In Beale Street, dawn has barely broken as a bitter winter chill fills the air. The clear desert sky has allowed an abnormal chill to fill the air, forcing the eight mercenaries currently waiting at the head of the street to don fur Ushunka hats, the ear flaps hanging down over the sides of their faces and lightly scraping against the shoulders of their thick, khaki-green padded parkas. Frank, barely visible due to pulling his furred hood up over his face, shivers slightly, rubbing his hands together vigorously. Beside him, Lynch simply stands tall and erect, arms folded as he gazes out at the sands.
Lynch: Don’t tell me you’ve never stood watch in Winter.
Frank [Teeth chattering]: N-N-No! It’s always been t-tucked in b-bed with c-c-c-cocoa!
Lynch: You make me sick, you little pansy. You don’t hear the others complaining!
Sal [Muffled]: It’s too fucking cold to complain!
Sal [Quietly]: Asshole..
Lynch turns around, scanning over the mercenaries accompanying him: Phil, Jericho, Sal, Bill, Billy, Ivan and Frank. Billy doesn’t even have a parka on, and is still dressed in a pair of long-sleeved striped pyjamas and a pair of rabbit-fur slippers.
Lynch: Scot. Nice to see you have some balls.
Billy: Oh aye, we’re used tae this weather up in the Highlands. Hell, this here’s a picnic!
Phil [Quietly]: …I can’t feel my legs…
Jericho: No-one wants to.
Ivan [Impatiently]: Vere are ze veapons?!
Lynch: Calm down, Russki.
On cue, a box lorry, the rear trailer painted a simple beige color, roars into view from the right-hand side of the sands, turning a sharp left at the head of Beale Street and turning to face the mercenaries. In the drivers seat sits the familiar salt-and-pepper stubbled face of Father Mercenary, his pearly whites gleaming as he barrels forward. Sal screams, ducking, only for Father Mercenary to crank the brakes, screeching violently to a halt mere inches from Lynch.
Lynch: Turn it around, Father.
Father gives a thumbs up, reversing slightly to the head of the street before twisting left, and then turning to the right, slowly turning to face away from the mercenaries before reversing towards them, stopping a few feet away this time. Father kicks the drivers door open, hopping out from the cabin and clapping his hands together, grinning brightly.
Father Mercenary: Hello, children. Got a brand new shipment of weaponry here that I am sure you will all enjoy.
Frank: Yeah, we better.
Father: And what’s that supposed to mean?
Lynch: We have reason to believe the Beauty and the Beast Unit are reliving their deepest, darkest memories.
Father [Darkly]: Which means we’re fucked.
Jericho: Yeah. Funny how things work, isn’t it?
Father [Bursting into a grin again]: Well, gentlemen, I have your cure right here.
Father Mercenary grasps the back of the box lorry, grasping a metal handle and quickly pushing up, squatting down as he does before wrenching to his feet, effectively throwing the metal shutter up and revealing several wooden crates stood up in neat rows as opposed to stacked upon eachother. Frank laughs slightly, looking inside the lorry.
Frank: Wow..Christmas has come early!
Father: M60’s, a few FNs, we threw in a few extra AK’s, and one or two little surprises. Basically, we just tossed everything we could scavenge as spares from the armory.
Ivan: Like a goody bag!
Father: Yes. A goody bag.
Ivan [Excitedly]: ANY EXPLOSIVES?!
Father: Woah, calm down there, Ivan! We shall see what Father Christmas brought us!
Bill [Darkly]: Father Christmas better have brought me an Uzi.
Father: We’re in the Middle East, Bill…..Yes, we have Uzi’s in there. We pulled a few favours from the Israeli’s for them.
Frank: Any Galil’s?
Father gives a booming laugh, throwing his head back powerfully as he does before snapping it back and looking at Frank.
Father [Growling]: You’re an idiot who expects too much.
Frank [Sadly]: ..It was an honest question..
Bill: So, how did you get favours from the Israeli’s?
Father: We guarded Israel’s borders during the Yom Kippur celebrations.
Sal: HOLY SHIT! You guys did that?
Father: Yes, we did.
Lynch: Why weren’t we invited?
Sal [Laughing in disbelief]: Because guarding Israel during Yom Kippur is like guarding the Queen during her birthday, or guarding the president during the Fourth of July! They don’t let any half-trained, half-brained trigger-happy unit do it!
Father: Touche. Needless to say, they were eager enough to hand us some Uzi’s…..Good thing we kept Nolastname’s photos hidden….
Phil: Look, Father, how many times do I have to tell you: Gaddafi’s guard captured me!
Father [Folding his arms]: For someone who hates women, you sure are compliant with them.
Phil: Have you SEEN his Amazonian Guard?
Father: Seen them? I’ve bedded them!
Bill [Smirking]: ….Now that’s hardcore.
Bill raises a hand and Father quickly high-fives him.
Phil: Yeah, well, I was forced against my will.
Father: So why did the photo’s include you holding a sign saying “Look Ma, I’m with Colonel Gaddafi”?!
Phil [Shrugging]: ……Well, because I was!
Father: It’s a good thing we’re secretly on good terms with Gaddafi and have encouraged him not to leak photos of a UN-sanctioned mercenary partying in his presidential palace.
Phil: Jericho was there too!
Jericho [Quickly]: ….SO WAS BILL!!
Bill: What can I say? His face looked like a melted marshmallow and it amused me.
Father [Sighing]: Look, just shut up and start unpacking, alright?
Father twists around, hopping into the back of the lorry and walking in, pulling a blue crowbar off the top of one of the box’s lids before grasping its side, slowly pulling it out. Lynch quickly hops in, sliding behind the crate and helping push it forward. It takes just a few seconds for Father and Lynch to guide the box out to the sands, landing with a dull thud as it does. Father looks at the crate before looking up at Phil, snapping his fingers.
Father: Nolastname, this crate has your name written on it.
Father: No, seriously, it does. Judging by your mental stability, I’m guessing it’s something that involves a large area of effect.
Phil: You calling me insane?
Father [Bluntly]: Yeah.
Phil snatches the crowbar out of Father Mercenary’s hand, slipping the hook under the crates lid and pushing down violently on the handle, the lid giving a resounding crack as the nails relinquish their grip on the crate and allow Phil to flip the lid, looking down into the straw packed into the crate. Phil leans deep into the crate, reaching in and grasping a smooth metal butt, pulling out what appears to the body of a FN2000 assault rifle.
Phil [Surprised]: Fucking hell!
Father: Yep. We need the vanguard better protected—
Jericho: Isn’t vanguard just a pretty word for ‘Meatshields at the front’?
Father: Well… [Grumbling]…shut up and be grateful.
Phil bends his elbow so that the gun is pointed vertically into the air, running his hands across the underside of the body.
Phil: Clip me.
Jericho slaps Phil around the back of his head.
Phil [Angrily]: How about I fucking beat the shit out of you, Jerry??!?
Father Mercenary reaches into the crate, pulling out a small grey magazine and throws it to Phil who catches it in his left hand, loading it into the FN2000 and pulling back on the slide, loading the weapon before aiming down the iron sights. Phil nods, quickly activating the safety and setting the weapon back into the crate.
Jericho: He does love his guns, this one.
Phil: You try not loving guns when every single woman you’ve been with wants to kill you.
Jericho [Chuckling]: And most of your friends.
Phil [Darkly]: Thanks Jerry.
Ivan: Vell, is zere anyving vor me? I could use a proper weapon.
Father Mercenary clicks his fingers, waving his finger as he succumbs to deep thought, turning around and climbing into the rear of the lorry and walking into the depths before kicking forward what appears to be a small, thin box. Ivan walks over to the lorry, reaching out and taking the box.
Father: M79 Grenade Launcher. Called it the Blooper back in ‘Nam. It’s old, but it’ll send those bastards down in Praying Mantis running for their mothers..especially with a guy like you using it.
Ivan [Paralyzed by happiness]: I vink I might kiss you.
Father: Woah, hold on there, Russki, let’s start with a handshake instead!
Ivan grins, clapping giddly as Lynch emerges from the second truck, grunting loudly as he pulls out another of the tall crates with a resounding slam into the sand. Lynch wipes his brow with the back of his right hand, glancing over at Ivan.
Lynch: …That’s never a good sign. Ivan cheerful.
Within ReLoaded, Courtney is standing in the fogged-up shower, situated on the top floor next to the bedroom, singing loudly as she washes her body with a red loofah. She stands on her tiptoes, glancing out of the small window embedded into the wall in the upper-right, turning her head to the right slightly and watching through the patterned glass as the mercenaries begin to unpack the crates. Courtney lets out a re-invigorated laugh.
Courtney [Singing inanely]: MONEY MAKES THE WORLD GO ROUND AND ROUND, AND ROUND AND ROU-OU-OUND!!!!
The white, wooden door to the bathroom creaks open and Tavi, eyes closed and wearing a pair of black cotton pyjamas, stumbles in, her hair ruffled as she lets out a deep sigh, pulling off her shirt and pants and pulling back the shower curtain. Courtney squeals, stumbling back slightly.
Courtney: [Shocked]: Tavi, get out for fucks sake!
Tavi: Leave me alone! I need to groom too!
Courtney [Angrily]: I’m trying to shower here!
Tavi: Oh yeah, and how about I join you?
Tavi: I need a shower, and I ain’t waiting.
Courtney [Shocked]: Tavi, get out! I need my privacy!
Tavi: Nope, I’m coming in!
Courtney: Don’t you dare! STOP!
Jericho, who is busy walking down Beale Street, looks up at the tiny window with steam from the shower billowing out of it before shaking his head and walking down the street.
Jericho [Muttering under his breath]: This place is fucking nuts sometimes..
Tavi climbs into the shower, huddling under the showerhead and letting out a small, content sigh as Courtney folds her arms, glaring at her.
Courtney [Scathingly]: Y’know, how about you fucking wake up early, then?!
Tavi: Hey, don’t get mad at me! Wolf never woke me up as she usually does!
Courtney looks taken aback, scratching behind her ear.
Courtney [Quietly]: ….Where is she?
Tavi: …Y’know, I don’t actually know.
Tavi grasps the window, getting on her tiptoes and shoving it fully open, leaning out of the window and looking right at the supply truck which is busy being unloaded by the mercenaries. Tavi gives a shrill whistle, catching Ivan’s attention who turns to her, busy carrying an opened wooden crate filled with straw and the butts of M60s peering from it.
Tavi [Calling out]: Oi! RUsski! Have you seen Crying Wolf?!
Tavi nods, shutting the window and getting back on the flats of her feet, turning to Courtney.
Tavi [Confused]: …..What the fuck?
Courtney [Gravely]: ….Fuck, you don’t think it’s related to Octopus, do you?
Tavi: You think she’s finally cracked and is remembering more of her past?
Courtney: …Certainly an explanation.
Tavi: Goddammit….This shits too heavy to think about when I’m barely awake.
Courtney [Darkly]: But it’s serious, Tavi. We’ve seen Wolf slowly degenerate before our eyes, succumbing to the level where she hungers physically for flesh…Could she have left??
Tavi: …I don’t know…
Courtney sighs, her back sliding down the porcelain-tiled wall and into the tub, hugging her knees to her chest.
Courtney: If she’s cracked, the world just became a more dangerous place for it..
Tavi [Smiling slightly]: Hey, don’t worry, we’re safe here..
Tavi remains quiet, humming under her breath as she washes under her arms. They listen carefully as they hear the rattling sound of gunfire filling the air.
Father Mercenary’s Voice [Panicked]: FUCKING HELL!!!! NOLASTNAME, WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING?!?!
Phil’s Voice: MY FINGER SLIPPED!!!!
Father Mercenary’s Voice [Angrily]: IT SLIPPED FOR TEN SECONDS?!?!?!
Phil’s Voice: …YEAH!!
Another burst of gunfire fills the air.
Father Mercenary’s Voice [Growing violently impatient]: MEMEH-PORPINGTON!!! WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING?!?! SHOOTING SEAGULLS?!?!?
Sal’s Voice [Disgusted]: ONE OF THEM SHIT ON ME!!!!!
Tavi lets out a small sigh, squirting some pale blue shampoo into her hands and begins rubbing it over her body.
Tavi: …Guess I was wrong.
Courtney [Bluntly]: Yup.
Back in Beale-Walker Square, the familiar office chair has been set up for the final day of interviews. Rex is giddily tapping the camera on the tripod himself as Johnny sits off to the side, sitting cross-legged in the sands with a steaming mug of coffee in his hands. In comparison, Tim is still stood slightly behind the camera, his boom-mic already raised in the air above the office chair, making it clear no time is being wasted in getting the interviews.
Johnny: A guy could get used to this.
Rex [Angrily]: SHUTUPIJUSTWANNAFINISHTHIS!
Tim: In English, Rex.
Rex [Patronisingly]: Shut up. I. just wanna finish. THIS!!
Johnny: Why? There’s nothing wrong with it here!
Rex [Scoffing]: HOW CAN A DESERT BE COLD?!?!?
Tim: Clear skies. No clouds to trap the heat.
Rex [Darkly]: Fuck you, Tim.
Tim: Hey, you asked!
Robbie, slightly underwhelmed by the bickering twosome, strolls into the Square, completely blanking the mercenaries unpacking weaponry behind him and slowly pulls on a leather glove, his Kriegsmarine overcoat fluttering dangerously in the light wind blowing a chill through Beale Street. He kicks out his leather boots slightly, sending a small puff of sand into the air as his footsteps ring through the Square.
Rex: So, who’s next?
Tim: The Nazi guy.
Robbie [Growling]: Excuse me, but I do not believe in the Nazi ideologies. I am simply an admirer of the World War Two-era German war machine, thank you very much.
Tim: …So, the Nazi guy.
Robbie [Sharply]: I’ll ‘Nazi’ you, you son of a bitch: I’ll snap your fucking neck.
Johnny: Quite violent, aren’t you?
Robbie [Sharply]: Very. So don’t fucking test me.
Johnny: I’m not going to mess with anyone who wears an SS uniform.
Robbie: I like you. You’re smart.
Rex [Rolling his eyes]: Stop kissing his ass, will you?
Robbie: How about I take his head and shove it up your ass?
Johnny: Why would I be the one getting punished?!
Rex: Look, just sit down, Nazi boy.
Robbie [Sharply]: Kriegsmarine aficionado.
Rex: That’s what I said, didn’t I?
Johnny: No, you said ‘Nazi boy’ again.
Rex scowls viciously at Johnny as Robbie calmly walks over to the office chair, parting his overcoat slightly as he sits down on the chair, placing his hands on his lap and looking at the camera.
Rex: Good, let’s get this done—
Robbie: I concur. You revile me too much for this to be a detailed, serious interview.
Rex [Grumbling]: Fucking charmer, aren’t you?
Robbie: I simply have an intolerance for such banal activities.
Rex [Bluntly]: Smartass.
Robbie [Spitting slightly]: No..SMART. Smarter than you, you dog.
Rex [Sighing]: ….Just sit down, will you?
Robbie: I am sat down.
Robbie [Clapping his hands together]: Well? CHOP CHOP, SLOTH!!!
Rex: Name. Place of Birth. Rank.
Robbie: Robbie Steinhatten. Classified information. Großadmiral.
Rex: Lovely. So, you won’t tell us where you were born?
Robbie [Sharply]: Why should I? The other idiots may, but I absolutely refuse to.
Rex: C’mon, open up.
Robbie: How about I open YOU up?
Johnny [Sniggering]: I don’t think he means that sexually.
Rex: I KNEW THAT! Look, Robbie, what can you tell us?
Robbie: About what?
Rex: I don’t know….What’s it like captaining an ancient piece of machinery?
Robbie [Angrily]: ANCIENT?! A U-BOAT IS A WONDERFUL PIECE OF MECHANISED WARFARE!!!
Rex: Woah, calm down!
Robbie [Snarling]: Fuck you, peasant! That U-Boat can destroy ships from underwater or on the surface! Every single ship we meet, we annihilate!
Rex: So that’s why your U-Boat is under construction in Port Said?
Robbie: Yes, but the difference between us and them is that their ships can’t be repaired. They are on the bottom of the Suez, rusting and providing homes for the fishes, their skulls fertilising the seaweed.
Rex [Shaking his head]: Such a charming man.
Robbie [Spitting]: I’m sorry, but do you want me to sugarcoat myself like my peers have? I like violence. I enjoy killing. It’s a sport. It’s a hobby. I do it to survive, simple as that.
Rex: How the fuck have you not turned a gun on your own comrades?
Robbie [Calmly]: An unquenchable thirst for violence does not instantly mean I am a loose cannon. They give me a wide berth, they respect me when they can, and in return I give them reinforcements from the sea. Why would I shoot them? I am comfortable here.
Rex [Patronisingly]: Alright, calm down—
Robbie: Rex, you’re new here, so let me just give you some information: When I’m not calm, I am killing. Your head has not been ripped from your shoulders, hence: I am calm.
Rex [Looking down at him]: …..My God, Does anyone even like you?
Rex: ….Isn’t Dave Jewish?
Rex: Just seems odd, what with you—
Robbie [Coldly]: Say it and I will tear out your intestines and hang you with them.
Rex: Alright, whatever.
Robbie: I am acquainted with the others, but more closely so with my crew. After all, I do depend on them. And Dave is a part of my crew, hence: I like him.
Rex: Anything else? Important missions you’ve been a part of?
Robbie [Shrugging nonchalantly]: I’m relatively new.
Rex: Oh, you weren’t part of the mythical Shadow Moses mission?
Rex gives an arrogant smirk, but Robbie simply narrows his eyes.
Robbie [Angrily]: We’re done here.
Rex: We are.
Robbie holds his hand out, pressing it over the lens to block himself from view as he gets to his feet, walking towards the alley connecting Beale Street and the square. A gunshot suddenly rings out, barely scraping past Robbie’s right arm.
Jericho’s Voice: Dammit, these things are misfiring!
A second gunshot rings out, chipping the wall near Robbie.
Frank’s Voice: Fuck this, I’m going inside.
Robbie walks into Beale Street, watching as Frank and Lynch jog up the stairs to their house and slam the door shut behind them. The F2000 in Phil’s hand suddenly rattles out a stream of bullets, sending him stumbling back to the floor on his rear.
Phil: Fucking hell! Could we at least get decent weaponry?!
Ivan suddenly looks down at his M79.
Ivan: HIT ZE DECK!!
The mercenaries dive to the floor as Ivan throws the gun away underarm, watching as it explodes in a small orange and black plume of flames. Robbie takes a deep breath, letting out a calm sigh.
Robbie [Satisfied]: Nothin’ like the smell of gunpowder in the morning…
*Frank, Lynch, Mantis, Raven, Dave, Robbie and Wills Flat*
Lynch pushes the net curtain back in front of the window, having watched the proceedings and giving a small sigh and turning to Bob, who is sat at a small wooden table to the right of the door, a large metal radio sat upon it as he clutches a headset to his right ear, tuning the dial.
Lynch [Impatiently]: Anything? Any news on Octopus?
Bob: No..some bad traffic, though. Might want to avoid driving for a good while.
Dave yawns and stretches, simply sitting on the couch wearing nothing but a pair of jeans and an old grey vest as he listens to the conversation.
Dave: Bob, baby, don’t fuckin’ worry. Octopus is probably out there singing, dancing and picking flowers.
Bob [Sighing darkly]: …Dave, this is time for real concern.
Dave: Why?! We made them forget their memories…..right?
Lynch [Bluntly]: Wrong.
Dave [Rambling angrily]: You know what? This story is just fucking confusing. Remember Metal Gear Solid? Huh? I LIKED THAT STORY!! THAT WAS SO SIMPLE!! It was us, protecting Snake, while he destroyed a giant robot! But nooooooooooooooooooooooo! Now we’re stuck with women regaining memories, portals sucking people up and SHIT!
Bob keeps twisting the dial, ignoring Dave’s incessant rambling.
Bob: May have got something. Two women heading east from Port Said.
Bob [Gasping]: …….Oh.
Dave: Oh is never good.
Frank shoves the door to his room open, clutching tightly at his own hair as his eyes dart frantically around the room.
Frank [Shakily]: Guys? Has anyone seen Mantis?
Bob: ..One female, short, blonde, blue eyes..Another female..taller..dark hair tied back..carrying two dolls……[Eyes widening in terrified realisation]....OH FUCK!
The sound of crackling laughing and screaming is heard piercing the headset, causing Bob to pull it off and throw it down. The sounds of static-covered cries and screams fill the air, followed by the sound of the individual relaying these area updates having their neck snapped twice.
Dave [Nonchalantly smirking]: …..Cool.
Frank suddenly turns dark pale. The receiver turns silent.
Mantis’s Voice [Hissing, static-filled]: …Blood….Blood..
The sound of ripping fills the air, presumably from flesh being torn from bone as the sound of Octopus’s screeching laugh pierces the headset. Lynch growls, cupping his hands over his ears, his left eye twitching.
Lynch [Twitching]: FUCK, THAT’S ANNOYING!!
Frank [Darkly]: …Oh God..
Bob: Shit. Fuck. This isn’t good.
Frank [Screeching]: Isn’t good? ISN’T GOOD?!??! THAT’S THE BIGGEST FUCKING UNDERSTATEMENT OF THE MILLENIUM!!! WE’RE FUCKED!!
Lynch: …..Frank, calm down.
Frank [Hysterically]: HOW??!?! WE’RE DEAD!!! DEADER THAN DEAD!!
Dave sighs, standing up and walking over to Frank, placing his hands on his shoulders.
Dave [Calmly]: Frank.
Dave slams his head forward, slamming his forehead into Frank’s and sending Frank stumbling back into the wall.
Dave [Spitting venomously]: WILL YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP, YOU FUCKING PUSSY?!?!?!
Dave [Spitting]: Seriously, it’s just fucking whine, whine, whine with you!
Frank: IT’S HARD NOT TO—
Dave: I will fucking cut you if you do not shut your fucking mouth!!
Frank [Hysterically]: OCTOPUS IS GONE! WOLF IS GONE! AND NOW MANTIS IS GONE! ALL THAT’S LEFT IS—
Will runs out of his room, wearing nothing but a pair of jeans and looks around, holding a Durex condom packet.
Will: …Guys, where’s Raven?
Frank [Sobbing]: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Lynch [Bluntly]: Yes.
Will: Why is the drunk hobo screaming? Someone sprayed him with water?
Frank turns to Will, grasping his shoulders roughly and forcefully slamming him into the wall to the right of the door to his and Raven’s room.
Frank [Crying]: WILL!! THE ENTIRE UNIT IS GONE!!
Will scrunches his nose slightly.
Will [Darkly]: Your breath literally smells of ass.
Dave simply slumps back down on the couch, shaking his head as Bob begins to twist the dial even more.
Bob: Fuck..Fuck fuck fuck….Fuck.
Lynch: Bob, you’re awfully calm about this.
Bob [Bawling]: FUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK!!!
Bob slams his head against the table, bawling loudly.
Lynch [Nonchalantly]: ….Oooooooooooookay.
Will grasps Frank’s hands, gently pulling them off of his shoulders before pushing him backwards.
Will: Look, if you assholes want me, I’m going to get something to eat. As far away from homosexual biker and drunken hobo as possible.
Dave: Call me homosexual biker again. I dare you.
Will: If you didn’t hear it the first time, no point repeating it to a deaf man.
Will laughs, rushing over to the door, pulling the door open and running outside as Dave stands up, growling darkly.
Dave [Angrily]: ..Why the fuck do we keep him around?!
Lynch [Shrugging]: Meatshield.
Frank: Guys, let’s be serious about this! WE! ARE! FUCKED!
Lynch: Frank, will you just shut the hell up?! BOB!! BOB!!
Bob slowly raises his head, gasping and choking. Lynch grasps his shoulders, slapping the side of his cheek roughly.
Lynch [Impatiently]: WAAAAAAAAAAAAAKE UP!!!!!!
Bob [Choking]: I’M AWAKE! I’M AWAKE!
Lynch lets go of Bobs shoulders. Bob gives a small hiccup, and Lynch slaps him sharply on the cheek.
Bob [In pain]: WHAT THE FUCK WAS THAT FOR?!
Bob sighs, cupping a hand to his left ear and pressing it there as he twists the knob.
Frank [Hiccuping slightly]: We’re doomed. That’s it. We’re doomed.
Frank slumps backwards against the wall.
Dave: Will you shut up?!
Frank: Dave, these are four of the most psychotic women we know. They are battle-hardened emotionless killers—
Dave: Emotionless my ass! Octopus laughs, Wolf cries, Mantis screams and Raven……gets angry a lot.
Frank [In disbelief]: IT’S NOT A STEP UP!!
Dave [Angrily]: Shall I tell you what isn’t a step up? YOU NOT SHUTTING YOUR FUCKING MOUTH!!!
Lynch: LADIES! LADIES! SHUT UP, ALRIGHT?! Bob. Are you getting anything?
Frank: Mantis is gone…Oh God, I’ll be first!
Bob [Muttering darkly]: Shit….I’m getting something else..
Lynch: Please tell me it’s good news.
Bob [Darkly]: An attack on the town.
Frank: An attack on the town?!?!?
Dave [Laughing]: Wow, these guys are growing some balls!!
Bob: Serious balls. We haven’t had a straight attack on this town in….forever. Not since the Gekkou’s started leaving us alone and attacking better targets.
Lynch: So why would they attack us now?
Bob twists the dial left and right some more, listening carefully.
Bob [Rubbing his eyes]: ……Capture. Capture? Hostages? It would make sense. It would certainly lower our guard substantially.
Lynch: Hostages? They’d actually take hostages?
Dave: Why not? What better way to demoralise your enemy than to take one of their own?
Frank [Shaking his head slowly]: ….No, they wouldn’t have the balls.
Dave [Bluntly]: They would.
Bob: How do you know, Dave?
Dave: Well, they’re crazy. And…………[Shrugging]….well, crazy.
Bob [Unimpressed]: So, your infallible evidence of a PMC kidnapping our soldiers is that they are crazy and they..are crazy. Alright.
Dave [Darkly]: Bobby, if you try the smartmouth with me again, I will cut you.
Lynch: Goddammit, what is it with you and cutting people?!
Dave: My day ain’t complete unless I’ve cut something. Speaking of which..
Dave sits forward, pushing himself to his feet and reaching into the back of the waistband of his jeans, pulling out a kitchen knife and turning to Frank, grinning brightly.
Frank [Raising an eyebrow]: ….Dave?
Dave: Time to cut the emo out of ya!!
Dave runs after Frank, who screams wildly and barges out of the door, running down the steps and into Beale Street as Dave runs outside, jumping down the stairs. Lynch grasps the door, slamming it shut.
Lynch: …Right, well, that’s two morons temporarily dealt with.
Bob: Sir, do you really think they’d kidnap us?
Lynch twists his head, watching as Dave sprints towards Frank, making stabbing motions with his knife while he screams wildly.
Lynch [Sighing darkly]: ….Why the fuck would anyone waste the effort kidnapping one of us?
Back in the Square, Rex is busy tapping the side of the camera impatiently. Tim is still standing behind the camera, back straight with the boom-microphone held over the office chair erected in front of the wall. Johnny flicks a few switches on the side of the camera before turning around and walking off. The three members of the documentary suddenly turn around, watching as Frank sprints through the Square, screaming inanely.
Dave suddenly runs into view as Frank runs into Walker Street, clutching his knife in his hand. He suddenly skids to a halt, sending a small plume of sand into the air as he turns to look at Rex who glares at him.
Dave: ….Uh oh.
Rex: You’re supposed to be next…Where’s your shirt?
Dave [Laughing nervously]: …….In my other pair of jeans.
Tim: Dammit, can we just get this over with??!?!?
Dave scratches his left chest, giving a small burp.
Dave [Calmly]: Yeah, sure.
Rex [Darkly]: Great. Mother will go into conniptions.
Dave: SHE’LL LOVE IT!!!
Rex [Angrily]: BULLSHIT!!
Dave sighs, slumping over and strolling over to the chair, sitting down in the chair and looking up at the camera.
Dave grins broadly.
Rex: Alright, tone it down. We’re not holding you at gunpoint…and put down the knife.
Dave frowns, dropping the knife to the sands at his feet.
Dave [Angrily]: HAPPY?!?
Rex smiles and nods.
Rex: Name. Place of Birth. Rank.
Dave: Dave Jackscar. None of your business. None of your business.
Rex: So you have no rank?
Dave [Impatiently]: I SAID NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS!!
Rex: Alright, Alright!
Dave [Scathingly]: Ask me a question that won’t have me punching your face in repeatedly.
Rex: ……..Do you like it here?
Dave [Bluntly[: Yes. Next question.
Rex: C’mon, elaborate!
Dave: I get drunk, I get to shoot at things, and I occasionally get to ride on a U-Boat. What’s not to like??
Rex [Sighing]: So, that’s it? That’s the extent of what you can tell us?
Dave: Have you ever seen a dead person after he’s been ran over by a tank?
Rex: ….No, why?
Dave [Grinning]: It’s awesome. It looks like a pile of red wallpaper paste mixed with mucus and bone shards.
Dave gives a small grin.
Rex [Somewhat disturbed]: …Oooooooookay. That’s pretty disgusting.
Dave: Look, what do you want me to tell you? Mother Mercenary is good, she takes care of us, Frank’s an asshole—
Dave [Spitting slightly]: Because he’s a fucking drunken monkey is why!! This close to Christmas, and the bastard is still having us run around and unload weaponry and watch the skies!
Rex: Why the skies?
Dave: He’s a fucking conspiracy nut! He thinks flying saucers and shit like that exists.
Dave: Yeah, seriously.
Rex [In disbelief]: ..Wow.
Dave: Yeah. He’s not even house-trained either. Not a lot of people like him. In fact, I’m sure that the people who do like him only like him for his novelty value.
Rex: Wow, Frank really does catch a lot of flak—
Dave [Scoffing]: Bastard deserves it, really. I can think of a lot of other people who’d make more competent leaders.
Dave [Sharply]: The fucking Teletubbies for one!
Rex: Is he that bad?
Dave: When the man’s not an emotional wreck, he’s drinking. When he’s not drinking, he’s an emotional wreck. See? He is the human equivalent of an ouroborus!
Rex: Nice analogy.
Dave [Bluntly]: It’s called an education. Get one.
Rex: What about Lynch?
Dave: No complaints from me. Guys got skills.
Dave [Shrugging]: I’d rather have Charlie Brown with me on the frontline than Sal..but he does have his occasional moment.
Dave: He’s alright. I’m just waiting for the day when he’ll snap and start talking to a sockpuppet, though.
Rex: Anyone else you like? Mother Mercenary?
Dave: She’s a pip. Gotta love her. Who doesn’t love big ol’ women?
Rex [Smirking]: …..No comment.
Dave [Chuckling]: What? She’s tough, and she’s got meat on them bones! I wouldn’t go for her, but she’s a pip. I mean, I’d hedge a bet that no-one else could lead us in whopping our bollocks into Liquid Ocelot’s face like she can. The woman can make the United Nations piss themselves.
Rex: What about you and Robbie? You help crew the U-boat, apparently.
Dave: That I do. Robbie’s a good lad. A few hotdogs short of a picnic, but he’s alright.
Rex: What do you mean?
Dave [Darkly]: He’s an ice cube. A killer through and through. A perfect soldier in some ways. Guy doesn’t register emotion when giving orders or killing someone.
Rex: That’s kinda scary..
Dave: Not really. Look around us! [Ecstatically] IT’S WAR, BABY! THERE ARE NO RULES!
Rex [Bluntly]: Geneva Convention.
Dave: That just means we can’t fling gas at people or torture them in inhumane ways. We can still hook their balls up to a car battery.
Rex: That’s kinda inhumane—
Dave: Bullshit! How long was Guantanamo Bay open? The United States can do it, but a bunch of United Nation-sanctioned mercenaries can’t?!
Rex: It was controversia—
Dave [Angrily]: AND?!
Dave [Glaring at Rex]: Shut up, Rex. If I want to beat a bitch with a whip, I will.
Rex: I never even said anything!
Dave [Bluntly]: Keep it that way: This interview is done.
Rex: No, it isn’t. What’s your favourite weapon?
Dave: My fists.
Dave suddenly jumps to his feet, launching a thunderous right hook forward and slamming it into the side of Rex’s temple. Rex stumbles backwards before collapsing backwards onto the sands as Dave waves his hand in pain.
Dave: FUCK! IS HE SUPPOSED TO HAVE THAT HARD OF A HEAD?!
Tim: Blame his incredibly thick skull.
Dave hisses violently, shaking his hand and dancing on the spot.
On Beale Street, Tavi is stood in the alleyway to the left of ReLoaded, standing beside the passenger door of a jet black Jeep while tapping her wrist impatiently, letting off a few irritated growls. Courtney suddenly rushes out of the front door, twisting around and jogging into the alleyway, jingling a set of keys.
Courtney: Got ‘em!
Tavi: Are you done? We really need to head out to Cairo.
Courtney: I know.
Courtney and Tavi exchange quick nods.
Tavi: Get in the jeep, Courtney.
Courtney: I will.
Tavi: Will you?
Courtney : Yes. Yes I will.
They nod at eachother. Courtney climbs into the drivers seat, and Tavi quickly climbs into the passengers seat, slamming the door shut. Courtney fires up the engine, driving out of the alleyway and turning right, quickly speeding past the mercenaries and the lorry they are busy unloading. Jericho and Ivan scream, diving to the sands as the Jeep narrowly misses them, speeding out north from Beale Street. Jericho quickly picks himself up, dusting off his trenchcoat.
Jericho: …The fucks their rush?
Father quickly hops out of the back of the lorry, walking over to Billy who is sat on top of a crate, examining an M60 that appears to be close to rusting, the khaki paint flaking from it.
Father [Quietly]: …I need something doing.
Billy [Grumbling]: Ahhhh..fuck.
Father: Look, you’re pretty much the only mercenary I know of who actually has some steel testicles.
Billy: I forged them in the fires of hell!!!
Father: Otherwise known to human beings as Glasgow.
Billy [Shrugging]: ….Actually, I forged them in Livingston. I lost my sense of morality in Glasgow…..I also lost my sense of self-respect in Aberdeen—
Father: Billy, your life story really does not interest me. [Whistling shrilly] OI! BILL! GET YOUR REDNECK ASS HERE!
Bill hops out of the back of the lorry, busy tearing off the left sleeve of his blue-and-white flannel shirt.
Father: I want both of you to tail Courtney and Tavi.
Father: You know that the Unit have scattered to the winds?
Bill: Oh. That’s why people were screaming earlier.
Father: Yeah!...Well, that and seagulls were shitting on them.
Bill [Rolling his eyes]: Lovely.
Father: I want to know where they are going, and why they are in such a hurry to be there, got it?
Billy: …I guess?
Father: I’ve got a Humvee parked up in Walker Street. I’ll tune the ham radio into Bob, who’ll give you directions. It’s a standard recon mission.
Bill groans loudly.
Bill [Angrily]: Recon?! That’s boring as shit! I just wanna shoot something!
Father: You will hold your fire, got it?
Father: I was talking to the redneck.
Bill [Groaning]: Holding our fire is boring as hell! Can’t we just pop their tires or somethin’?
Father growls loudly, and Bill quickly steps back.
Father: This is going to be done by the book..
Bill: Fuck books!
Jericho [Chuckling quietly]: Well, that explains a lot..
Bill [Angrily]: You got something to say, Limey?
Jericho: No I don’t, Cheeseburger muncher.
Father gives a shrill whistle, causing Bill and Billy to wince near him.
Father: Take Sal and Vince with you.
Billy: Where is Vince?
Father: In the Humvee.
Billy [Raising an eyebrow]: Hang on..what? The bastard didn’t even turn over when we left the house this morning!!
Father: I took the time to contact him.
Billy: …So you knew this would happen??!
Father: No. I phoned him a few minutes ago and bribed him with some sort of weird Japanese manga novel we found one night in the Academy. He ran down here faster than light.
Billy [Bitterly]: Fucking asshole..
Father [Clapping his hands]: CHOP CHOP!
Billy scowls, nodding at Bill as they turn left, heading towards the alleyway that cuts into the Beale-Walker Square. Father Mercenary looks over at Sal, who is sitting with his eyes closed while cross-legged on the side of the road with a flask of tea in one hand and a plastic cup in the other. Sal opens one eye, looking at Father.
Sal: Spot of tea?
Father: Spot of a kick in the testicles?
Sal [Calmly]: How very barbaric.
Father jolts forward and Sal screams, jumping to his feet and spilling tea over his black dress shirt.
Sal [Angrily]: DAMMIT! I JUST HAD THIS TUMBLE-DRIED!!
Father [Snapping]: FOLLOW BILLY AND BILL, NOW!!!
Father: Or I’ll call Mo—
Sal disappears in a plume of sand.
Lynch: You know, you don’t have to be that cruel. You must know that her name causes many a mercenaries bowels to void.
Phil: He ain’t kidding.
Father: But it’s fun!
Lynch [Smirking]: …Yeah, you’ve got me there.
Billy and Bill emerge from the Square and in Walker Street with Sal jogging quickly in tow. In front of them, parked a few feet North of the Garage is a beige Humvee, dashed with yellow and white to make it blend in easier with the desert surroundings. In the back seat behind the passenger seat is Vince, sitting back in the seat and flicking through a book. Billy walks over to the window, pressing his face against the glass.
Billy [Groaning]: MURRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!
Vince screams, scrambling away as Billy and Bill laugh loudly. Vince breathes heavily, slapping the window with his palm.
Vince [Angrily]: FUCK OFF!!
Billy: Don’t get your Japanese schoolgirl panties in a twist, Vinnie.
Bill [Sighing]: Do we really have to bring him along?
Billy: Yeah. Well, it’s either him or Mother.
Bill growls lowly, grasping the door behind the drivers seat and pulling it open, sliding in and slamming it shut before looking at Vince.
Bill: …What the fuck is “Death Note”?
Vince: It’s a brilliantly dark manga about a boy who can kill people by writing their name in a book!
Bill: You know how I kill people?
Bill reaches into the side waistband of his jeans, pulling out a Beretta and pointing it at the side of Vince’s temple. Vince scrambles backwards, pressing his back against the door.
Vince [Frightened]: FUCKING HELL!!
Bill laughs loudly.
Bill: Yeah, we don’t need no pussy-ass book. Real men use guns.
Billy climbs into the drivers seat, looking over at the dashboard to his left where a small ham radio has been placed shakily upon it, the receiver hanging lifelessly from the radio. Sal climbs into the seat next to Billy, turning on the ham radio.
Bob’s Voice: Ah!! Hello? Hello?!
Sal simply looks at the radio, then at Billy, both of them shrugging nonchalantly.
Bob’s Voice: HEY! Someone answer! Johan, this better not be you!
Sal sighs, grabbing the radio before Billy snatches it from him.
Billy: Commencing tailing mission.
Billy looks at the ignition, noticing the key has already been placed in. He twists it, firing up the engine with a violent roar.
Vince [Clapping his hands]: ROAD TRIP!!! YAY!!
Billy revs the engine.
Billy: Brace yourselves.
The Humvee screeches as Billy reverses violently, speeding backwards down Walker Street before braking violently. Vince shoots forward, his head slamming off of the back of Sal’s seat and knocking him unconscious.
Billy [Laughing]: THAT’S why.
Billy slams his foot down, the tires screeching violently as they burst ahead.
Out in the Romani Desert, the beige Humvee holding Bill, Billy, Sal and Vince is busy heading down a road in the middle of the Romani Desert. The road, only barely marked out thanks to the vicious sandstorm that occurred last week, winds amongst the scorched sands, heading towards Cairo. A black Jeep, holding Courtney and Tavi, is busy speeding in front of them, clearly trying to arrive to a destination in a hurry. Billy reaches onto his dashboard, grasping the radio and holding it to his mouth.
Billy: Alpha, this is Flying Scotsman: We are tailing tha suspects. Repeat: Tailing tha suspects.
Bob’s Voice [Crackling from static]: Anything yet?
Billy: Everything’s real quiet.
Vince: Shall I pop their tires? I think I have a good shot from here.
Billy sets down the radio, looking at Vince.
Billy: Do you know what ‘tailing’ means?
Bill: It means we follow them. Quietly. Without shooting them.
Billy: Exactly, so shut tha fuck up and keep reading yehr stupid comic, Vince.
Vince [Patronisingly]: It’s not a comic..It’s manga.
Bill: I’ll ‘manga’ your face if you don’t shut up.
Vince: ….That makes zero sense.
Bill pulls Vince’s manga from his grip, slapping him in the face with it before dropping it onto his lap.
Vince [Yelping]: Fuck! That hurt!
Bill [Smirking]: Told you that I’d ‘manga’ your face.
Tavi and Courtney’s Jeep continues driving down the road in front of them, not stopping or even faltering with its speed. Billy leans back in the seat of his Cobra, yawning and following them. Bill scratches his ear, while Sal looks over Vince’s shoulder, glancing at his manga before retching slightly and looking at Bill, nodding.
Sal: So, anything we can talk about?
Billy: Where do yeh think they’re going?
Bill: Cairo, obviously. Don’t know why, though. Probably doing woman stuff.
Bill [Shrugging]: Oh, you know….tampons and shit. Lesbian activities.
Sal: Do you think that’s all girls do?
Bill: Hey, I’ve never been lied to by XXXBabes before!
Sal [Snorting]: So classy.
Bill: Hey, you have a better idea on how I can pass the time?!
Sal: Practice shooting? Take up odd jobs around the town?......Actually move?
The Jeep stops suddenly, forcing the Humvee to screech to a halt.
Billy [Hastily]: Quick! Act inconspicuous!!
Sal: How? We’re in a fucking jeep!!
Billy quickly slides down in his seat, as well as Bill. Vince remains reading his manga while Sal looks over his shoulder, occasionally glancing at the Jeep. Courtney steps out of the drivers side, pulling the shemagh down from her mouth and squats down, checking the front tire. She leans in, peeling off the flattened, blood-soaked body of a snake before tossing it aside and climbing back in, roaring the engine into life.
Billy and Bill sit up, following the Jeep as it rolls down the road.
Bill: Are we going to do this every single time they stop?
Billy: Yeah, why?
Bill [Shiftily]: I gotta pee.
Billy and Sal look at Bill, who nods.
Bill: Yeah, I have to.
Billy: We told yeh not ta fucking drink, yeh idiot!!
Bill: I only had four bottles of Bud!!
Sal [In angered disbelief]: FOUR BOTTLES?!
Bill: I thought this was going to be a dangerous mission! I needed liquid courage!
Billy: Jesus Christ!
Vince: Just piss out the window, then!
Bill looks back at Vince, beginning to unbuckle his utility belt.
Billy [Angrily]: DAMMIT BILL!!
Bill carefully stands up on his seat, turning slightly and winding down his window using the tip of his foot, pulling down his zip and starting to urinate out of the moving Humvee.
Sal: That is the single most disturbing thing I’ve ever seen.
Billy: Yeah, they won’t notice us at all!
Sal: Well, I hope no-ones tailing us, all they’ll have to follow is the stream of piss!!
Bill: SHUT UP!
Billy sighs, shaking his head and grabbing the ham radio with his right hand.
Billy: Alpha, this is Flying Scotsman. Permission to beat the fucking shit out of Rattlesnake.
Bob’s Voice [Sighing]: That’s a negative……What’s he doing?
Billy: Pissing out of the moving car!
Bob’s Voice: …..Permission denied. Beat him AFTER the mission.
Billy: Roger that. Flying Scotsman out.
Billy sets down the ham radio as Bill zips himself up, stepping down and back onto his seat, fastening his belt as the Humvee drives on. Courtney and Tavi’s Jeep moves through an open security checkpoint, which appears to be home-made and constructed out of sandbags acting as a guard for the guards, with a barrier made from scrap metal. Two men, wearing shemagh scarves and sunglasses to obscure their faces, watch from behind the sandbags as the Humvee passes by. One of the guards raises his arm in the air.
Guard One [Calling out]: Praise be to Allah!
Billy: Peace be upon him!
The guard walks around the Humvee, flanked by his companion as they examine it, checking for any weaponry or explosive device.
Bill: You actually like those guys?
Billy: Don’t care, as long as they aren’t shooting at us.
Vince: True, true.
Bill: ….Shit, hang on.
Sal [Desperately]: BILL, NO! NOT NEAR THE TALIBAN!
Bill stands on his seat, unzipping himself and groaning loudly as he begins to urinate, directly onto the shoes of both guards.
Vince [Hastily]: DRIVE! DRIVE!
Billy slams his foot down, speeding off as the guards aim down their assault rifles, taking angry potshots at Bill who whoops loudly.
Bill [Ecstatically]: DAMN! YOU DON’T GET TO DO THAT EVERY DAY!
Billy grasps the receiver of the ham radio, looking down at it, then at Bill.
Billy: Bob is going ta one nasty place.
Bill [Confused]: Huh?
In Tavi and Courtney’s Jeep, Tavi twists the dial of the radio, turning up the cassette player.
Tavi: No news or anything..like they’ve vanished off of the face of the Earth.
Courtney [Snorting]: That’s their specialty, isn’t it? Disappearing, hit and runs..
Tavi: I guess, but doesn’t it strike you as…odd? Pre-orchestrated?
Courtney [Calmly]: Yeah.
Tavi: You don’t seem too shocked.
Courtney: We all knew this day was coming. All we can do is sit back, relax, and wait for the radar to go haywire. No point in hunting them down when we can just wait and watch them hunt us down.
Tavi: So, they’ll come for us as they relive their memories?
Courtney: Undoubtedly. If it was a plan…It’s one of the fucking smartest plans I’ve heard of..
A loud scream pierces the air, and Tavi and Courtney look around.
Tavi [Shocked, scrambling in the dashboard for her sidearm]: WHAT THE FUCK??!
Bill’s Voice [In the distance]: MY ASS! MY PERFECT ASS!
Courtney sighs, shaking her head.
Courtney [Bitterly]: Sometimes, I wonder if they actually understand the basic fucking concept of stealth..
Already sat in the chair, the very essence of punctual timing and grace, is Karab, wearing a distinctive plain dark-green uniform over a tan shirt and brown tie with a thick black leather belt wrapped over his waist. On his head, tilted slightly, is a tan tilted hat, the black strap placed around Karab’s chin and cutting into his beard, still remaining visible. Notably, the hat is replacing Karab’s usual turban, albeit with his huge swath of hair hidden within the hat. Johnny is busy setting up the camera, due to Karab arriving earlier than expected, as Rex watches with his arms folded.
Rex [Scathingly]: See? This is what happens when we stop for dinner! One of the only people who acts like an actual soldier shows up!
Johnny: I thought he’d be as late as the others!
Rex [Angrily]: YOU THOUGHT WRONG!!
Rex slaps Johnny around the cheek, causing him to yelp and fiddle quicker with the camera.
Johnny: The things I do for Mother!
Rex: How about you get that camera working or she’ll be the least of your worries!
Johnny [Spitting]: What can you do? Slap me? Pull my hair? Throw coffee in my face?! Fucking Californian bitch!
Karab clears his throat noisily and Rex turns to him.
Rex [Angrily]: YOU WANT SOME, PAKI BOY?!?!
Karab raises his eyebrows, reaching into the side of his belt and swiftly pulling out a large knife, the blade roughly the size and width of his forearm, glinting maliciously in the sun: A Kukri, with it’s distinctive curved blade, the signature knife of the Gurkha’s. Rex quickly shuts his mouth.
Karab: Look, if you people are going to be racist, at least get it right: I’M INDIAN….slash Nepalese. [Bitterly] BUT MAINLY INDIAN.
Rex: That’s what I said—
Karab [Angrily]: You called me a Paki, an insult to someone from Pakistan. I am from India. That would be like me calling you a Canadian fuckwit.
Rex [Voice cracking]: Did you just…just call me…Canadian?....Man, that’s harsh…
Karab: Then just get on with the interview.
Johnny gives a small thumbs up as Rex turns to Karab.
Rex: Name. Rank. Place of Birth.
Karab: Karab Tevany. Private First Class. Hyderabad, India.
Rex: Indian? Interesting.
Karab: Used to be a Gurkha, sir. Nepalese Father and Indian Mother.
Rex: So you’re essentially the most diverse person here?
Tim: Don’t break your arm patting yourself on the back.
Karab [Shrugging half-heartedly]: I am usually a humble person, but sometimes? I do like to recite my advantages.
Karab: I was a Gurkha.
Rex [Raising an eyebrow]: ……………….And?
Johnny [Bluntly]: Rex, that’s sort of a big deal.
Rex: Never heard of ‘em!
Johnny [Rolling his eyes]: Then how the hell did you ever become a part of the military?!
Rex [Stroking his chin lightly]: I……uhhh….so what? Why do I have to know who Gurkha’s are?!
Karab: The Gurkha’s are amongst the most feared and respected military units in the world. Sam Manekshaw once stated that “If a man says that he is not afraid of death, he is either lying or is a Gurkha.” He wasn’t lying.
Rex [Rolling his eyes and chuckling]: Ooooo! Am I supposed to be scared?
Tim: I would be.
Rex: Well then, why is he here?!
Karab: I was part of the Shree Naya Gorakh Battalion, a battalion within the Nepalese army. Original Gurkha battalions. Fearless, filled with pride, honor and respect.
Rex [Unimpressed]: And?
Karab: ….We had a mission a few years ago. A mission in Bolivia, in an attempt to disperse Pieuvre Armament PMCs from the area. We were part of a bloody battle: Kukri’s tore off limbs, men screamed, and the Gurkha’s advanced like a tidal wave of death upon the PMC. They got shot, they got stabbed, and a few Gekkou’s even showed up and started raining hot lead: It didn’t phase us. We marched and we marched and we marched until our feet were raw and our bodies were bathed in the blood of our team-mates and our enemies.
Rex: So what happened?
Karab: Well, as we moved onto the Pieuvre Armament barracks just outside the city of Sucre, Ocelot threw forth a battalion of Gekkou’s. [Sighing, voice cracking slightly] I…..well…….kinda ran.
Rex suddenly bursts out laughing as Karab shuffles uncomfortably.
Karab: It’s not funny!!
Rex [Laughing inanely]: FEARLESS MY ASS!!!
Karab: Hey, Gurkha’s are fearless!!!!!!...Just not me.
Rex continues laughing, slapping the top of the camera.
Johnny: Knock it off, Rex.
Karab: Stop laughing! My family hate me because of it!
Rex [Cackling]: GODDAMN! THAT’S PATHETIC!
Rex suddenly stops laughing as instantly as he started.
Rex: Hold on, Lynch told us that you were transferred here for blowing up a bomb outside of Hyderabad.
Karab: I LIED!! Wouldn’t you?!?!? It’s horrible!! I dishonoured the Gurkha’s! I dishonoured my family! Worst of all, I dishonoured myself!! I personally removed myself from the Gurkha’s and saw that I was sent here…I just made that shit up to make myself sound…better.
Johnny, Tim and Rex [Shocked]: WHAT?!
Karab [Nodding]: Yeah. I feel I was only in the regiment because my father’s memory still lived on amongst the old guard. I was introduced too soon. I felt that more training would be helpful, as opposed to being forced through into the ranks of a regiment that has a history too proud for me to disgrace.
Rex: Are you fucking nuts?! What the hell do you like about this place?!
Karab [Thinking slightly]: …They’re….charmingly backwards.
Karab: I mean, come on: They make me the chef at a kebab shop despite being a Gurkha. They give me a shield. They drink, they don’t practice good hygiene and they’re the worst soldiers you would have the misfortune to come across…..I love it. It’s a breath of fresh air. Plus, it helps my sense of confidence since I do much better than them on the field of battle.
Rex: I see.
Johnny [Shrugging]: Well, it does make sense.
Rex: Do you like anyone here?
Karab: Actually, all of them are charming in a sick sort of way. Dean and Samuel are great guys, though, and Lynch is a leader who is second-to-none….but I can’t stand Will.
Rex: Had a feeling you’d say that. That’s our second recurring theme.
Karab: What’s the first?
Rex: People hating Frank.
Karab [Shrugging and chuckling sadly]: ….I don’t hate Frank. He’s like a big dumb puppy.
Tim: Big dumb ugly puppy.
Karab: But no matter how much you slap him on the nose, he simply does not learn.
Rex: Indeed he doesn’t. So..Karab.
Rex: Any stories to tell us?
Karab [Chuckling quietly]: My friend, you wouldn’t believe the stories I have to tell….Like the time me and several others fought against a horde of mutated animal zombies.
Rex remains silent.
Karab: Or the time we went to Shadow Moses and made REX do an Irish jig.
Rex keeps silent.
Karab: Or that time I came across….[Widening his eyes for dramatic effect]...EL CHUPACABRA.
Rex: Alright, what are you smoking and where can I get it?
Karab: No, really, we did come across the Chupacabra.
Rex [Bluntly]: Alright, you’re excused.
Karab [Hysterically]: I told you that you wouldn’t believe the stories I have to tell! Let me tell you, friend: Science can only explain so much!
Suddenly, Dave runs into the Square, screaming and waving a Bowie Knife around before pointing the tip towards Rex.
Dave [Enraged]: YOU?!?!?!? DID YOU STEAL MY LAST JELLY DOUGHNUT?!??!
Rex [Panicking]: H-h-h-h-h-h-hey!! I DIDN’T!!
Will calmly walks past Dave, giving a small burp and covering his mouth. Dave sniffs the air.
Dave [Cackling]: ….I…smell….JELLY!!!!
Will screams, running out of the Square and into Walker Street as Dave sprints after him.
Karab [Rubbing his eyes]: You know what science will truly never explain? How these mercenaries can actually operate firearms.
Rex: That’s one thing we both agree on.
Karab sighs, getting up to his feet and walking forward. Will quickly re-appears from Walker Street, running across the Square. Dave sprints, moving in front of Karab who lunges an arm out, cracking his forearm across Dave’s chest which sends Dave frontflipping to the sands with a heavy thud.
Karab [Calmly]: Now if you’ll excuse me, gentlemen, I do believe it is time for some tea.
Karab calmly walks out of the Square as Rex looks over at Dave in amazement as he lets out a pained groan.
Back in Beale Street, the wooden crates are now littering the sands between the flats belonging to Frank and Phil. The lorry’s engine is now purring peacefully, signalling that the cargo is almost unloaded and checked and that it is soon to drive off. Ivan, Lynch and Father are busy dragging out crates while Jericho stands idly by, yawning. Phil is grasping a crowbar, prying off the lid of one crate and leaning inside, pulling out a hunting shotgun that has been turned into a Sawed-Off Shotgun, the barrels roughly sawn indicating its status as nothing more than a last-thought of weapon to give the mercenaries. Phil gives a small nod, pulling down the barrels and checking inside them. As he does, Will wanders down the concrete steps from Frank’s flat, heading over to Phil as his eyes dart around in his sockets.
Will: Phil, I never talk to you because I hate you, but…..uhh..,,Have you seen Raven anywhere?
Phil: No, why?
Will: She’s gone. We can’t find her.
Phil [Laughing]: Hey, Jerry, my life’s looking up!
Jericho: Why? Your last braincell evacuated the building?
Phil [Tutting]: Man, that’s fuckin’ harsh.
Will [Impatiently]: Will you two cut out the ass-patting? This is serious! We can’t find her! We think it might be the Unit going crazy!
Phil [Scathingly]: What’s with this ‘we’ stuff? YOU can’t find her, I don’t give a fuck. Capiche?
Will [Jabbing a finger into his chest]: FUCK YOU, YOU PIECE OF SHIT!! THIS COULD BE DANGEROUS!!
Phil: They already were, idiot. Who cares?
Will [Angrily]: YOU REALLY ARE A FUCKING IDIOT, AREN’T YOU?!??!
Phil: Cry more, Will. Your tears are delicious.
Will [Calmly]: I’m not crying.
Phil swings his knee up, catching Will right between the legs and in his testicles. Will squeals loudly, falling to his knees as his eyes well up, forming tears of absolute pain.
Jericho: Wow. Look at him.
Will [Squealing]: ….YOU BASTARD!!
Phil [Giving a thumbs up]: That’s me.
Robbie suddenly walks past them, shoving Will to the ground before continuing his walk down Beale Street, adjusting his overcoat.
Ivan: Hey, Vobbie, vere are you going?
Robbie: Make sure that repairs to my U-boat are finished in time for fucking Christmas.
Phil: Good luck. Unless you bribe those guys, they won’t move that fast.
Robbie [Spitting slightly]: Ten gold bullions.
The mercenaries watch as Robbie continues walking down the street, unphased by absolutely anything, his gaze transfixed forward.
Jericho: Why do we never get bribes that good?
Phil: Probably because—OH JESUS.
Phil jabs a finger over Jericho’s shoulder. Jericho sighs, slumping over.
Jericho [Sighing darkly]: She’s behind me, isn’t she?
Phil [Glaring at him]: CALL A FUCKING EXORCIST.
Jericho [Darkly]: YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO LEAVE THE COUNTRY AND FETCH THE RUBY CLAW.
Phil: …It slipped my mind.
Jericho lunges forward, grasping Phil’s shoulders and shaking him roughly.
Jerich [Venomously]: WE ARE BEING FUCKING HAUNTED!!! HOW COULD IT SLIP YOUR MIND??!?!
Phil [Bluntly]: Christmas shopping.
Jericho stops shaking Phil, glaring at him.
Jericho: There had better be some good presents under the tree this year.
Phil: Big ones.
Phil grins, nodding rapidly. Jericho eyes him cautiously as a hand places itself on his shoulder.
Jericho: Ivan, that had better be you.
Ivan [Bluntly]: Busy unpacking.
Jericho gives a deep sigh.
Father [Scared]: GHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSSSSSSSSTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!!!!
Jericho suddenly spins around, seeing absolutely nothing but Father Mercenary’s grinning face.
Father [Chuckling]: Scared ya!
Father chuckles to himself, shaking his head as he walks back over to the lorry, climbing into the back and watching as Lynch begins to drag out the final crate.
Jericho: …Then who the hell put the hand on my shoulder?!
Jericho turns around before screaming violently, Emilie between him and Phil, her index finger pulling at her bottom lip provocatively as she watches Jericho silently, hovering in mid-air as her rat scurries from her left shoulder to her right shoulder and her tattered, torn lace skirt flutters lightly.
Phil [Calmly]: Woman, you’re in my way.
Jericho [Terrified]: GHOST! GHOST! GHOST! IN THE MIDDLE OF THE FUCKING DAY!!
Emilie tilts her head slightly as Phil shoos her.
Phil: No, seriously, out of the way.
Emilie suddenly vanishes as Phil shakes his head, walking past Jericho who is standing there, panting heavily.
Phil: Always gets in the way, goddammit..ALWAYS.
Jericho [Grasping the sides of his head]: FUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKK!!
Ivan [Impatiently]: Vat is he vhining at?!
Phil [Bluntly]: Emilie.
Lynch: What’s an Emilie?
Phil: A VERY long story.
Lynch [Calmly]: I won’t even ask.
Phil: It’s best that you don’t, sir.
Jericho falls to his knees, hitting his head off of the tarmac as Lynch slowly takes a few steps away from him.
In Cairo, the narrow streets lined with marketstalls are packed to bursting point. The grains of sand upon concrete have been pounded into oblivion by the rhythmic marching of feet. One can barely think thanks to the noises of yelling people selling their wares, as well as the pulsing rhythm of speech from the crowd. Tucked in a small alleyway to the south-east of an L-shaped street, looking North, are Sal, Billy and Bill. Sal has a pair of binoculars hanging around his neck while Billy plays five-finger fillet, his hand on the sands as he slams a Bowie knife down between his fingers. Bill leans against the wall, adjusting his cargo pants.
Bill [Angrily]: You fucking asshole, Billy!!
Billy: Not my fault yeh pull yehr pants down when yehr takin’ a piss, yeh swine!
Sal: Besides, Bob’s screams were hilarious.
Billy: How did he know where I shoved the walkie-talkie, anyway?
Sal: Well, you did yell out that you did Bill in the ass.
Bill: That’s how rumours start, Billy! [Angrily] THAT’S HOW RUMOURS START!
Billy: Ach! Shut up!
Sal: ..Got something.
Sal lifts his binoculars, looking through them and noticing two distinct figures approach from the right, both clad in jet-black Burqas. One of the figures appears to have an incredibly hunched back, an odd shape that sets the figure out from the crowd.
Sal: Yeah, definitely the two of them. No sign of the Unit, though.
Bill [Calmly]: What if they aren’t following the Unit?
Billy: They obviously are!
Billy: Why else would they be out here?
Sal twists his binoculars to the right slightly, watching as Dean walks calmly past the alleyway with a burlap sack slung over his shoulder, whistling to himself. He suddenly stops, walking backwards and turning to Sal.
Dean [Grinning]: Hey guys.
Sal: Keep walkin’.
Sal: WE’RE ON A RECON MISSION!!!
Billy [Hissing]: Sal! Ix-nay on recon-bay!
Dean; Whatever dudes.
Sal: What the hell are you out here for?
Dean looks around shiftily.
Dean: ….Stuff not involving the smuggling of human kidneys.
Dean’s bag lets out a few drops of blood as the burlap sack begins to stain an odd dark shade of ruby.
Dean [Hastily]: Gotta go!!
Dean quickly rushes off, and Sal quickly snaps the binoculars back, watching as the figures begin to leave Sal’s field of vision.
Sal: They’re on the move.
Billy: Right, I’ll get onto Vince. Tell him to radio Bob.
Billy: I WANNA GO HOME!!
Bill: We have a mission to fulfil. An important mission. A solemn duty—
Sal [Scathingly]: Blow it out your ass, Bill. This is boring as hell. I wish Octopus would show up and start shooting shit or…something.
Billy gets to his feet, slipping the bowie knife into a sheath on the right-side of his waist, standing beside Sal and watching as the two figures turn right, sidling slowly out of view.
Billy: What do yeh think they’re up ta?
Bill [Quietly]: I don’t know, but I sense evil.
Bill [Edgily]: I don’t trust women, partner.
Sal lifts his binoculars, looking through them and watching as Tavi and Courtney squeeze through the crowd, their pace picking up.
Sal: They’re heading somewhere.
Bill: No shit, Sherlock.
Sal: Elementary, my dear asshole.
Bill [Bluntly]: Whatever, prick.
Billy: Where are they going?
Sal: ..How the fuck would I know? Heading north through the rabble—I’ve lost them.
Billy [Sighing]: Alright….
Billy grasps the walkie-talkie on his chest, switching it on and pressing down the button.
Billy: Scotsman ta Tard. Scotsman ta Tard. Come in, Tard.
All that is heard on the other end is a thick burst of static.
Billy [Angrily]: DAMMIT TARD, ANSWER ME!!
Sal looks through his binoculars, panning right across the street and noticing Vince stood in front of a stall, clutching a gaudily-painted bust of Nertiti.
Market Stall Owner: Yes, it is! Hand-painted, hand-crafted from fine clay…..Only ten thousand Egyptian pounds!
Vince: How about we haggle?
Market Stall Owner [Hesitantly]: …..Alright..but I won’t accept lower than ten thousand!
Vince [Calmly]: Eleven thousand.
Sal: …Alright, we’ve lost Tard. Looks like we’ll have to explore ourselves.
Billy [Venomously]: WHAT IS THAT IDIOT DOING?!?!?
Billy: For fucks sake…Alright, don disguises!!
Billy quickly wraps the shemagh around his head, leaving only a slit for his eyes which he quickly puts sunglasses over. He pulls a long duck-egg-blue Gallibaya from his pocket, pulling it over his head and slipping his arms into the sleeves, the body-length shirt-like garment covering his entire body and his uniform. Bill quickly puts on a baseball cap and a pair of glasses with a fake nose and moustache attached to them.
Billy [Sighing]: SERIOUSLY?!
Bill: What? You can’t tell it’s me! Look at you! You’re wearing Bigfoots shirt!
Billy [Shrugging]: Yeh kidding me? This shit’s comfortable!
Bill: Yeah? Well, if you think I’m bad, check out Sal!
Billy turns to Sal, who is now wearing a pitch-black Burqa, a flowing long robe which covers his entire body and even manages to obscure his body shape, accompanied by a matching Niqab which covers his face, leaving only a tiny slit for his eyes.
Billy [Grinding his teeth]: ……Sal. Those are meant for Muslim women.
Sal: Can you tell I’m a man?
Billy [Sighing]: ….Actually, I can’t.
Sal [Raising his arms and whooping]: WOOHOO! SEE?! MY DISGUISE IS BETTER!!!
Bill: Dude, you look like a ninja!
Sal: Burqa, asshole. Have some cultural sensitivity.
Sal grasps the bottom of the Burqa, pulling it up slightly and scratching his ass before letting it fall back down.
Billy: Alright, yeh two jessies, let’s go follow…the other two jessies.
Bill: What about Tard?
Billy: Hope the Taliban find him and remember the time he exposed himself in public.
Bill [Shuddering]: …That is one mental image I didn’t want.
Billy, Bill and Sal quickly head out of the alleyway, squeezing north through the rambunctious crowd in an attempt to follow Tavi and Courtney, a task proving difficult as the narrow, sandy streets fills with market dwellers, gullible tourists and the Egyptian natives heading to work. At the end of the street, they quickly tuck into a small alcove which opens into a narrow alleyway. Bill looks left down the street, quickly nodding to them and pointing ahead.
Bill: Heading west.
Billy: How do yeh know?
Bill [Seethingly patronising tone]: Well, unless one of those women has a hunchback, I’m guessing it might just be Tavi underneath that Burqa.
Billy [Shaking his head]: Let’s roll.
Billy, Bill and Sal quickly head left down the street before being forced to walk at a snails pace as the street once again becomes saturated with inhabitants. Billy stands on his tiptoes, watching as a distinctive hunch-backed Burqa slips into what appears to be an alleyway. Billy quickly squeezes through several people, keeping his head looking left before he notices an alleyway, slipping in to the entrance. Bill stumbles in behind him, as well as Sal.
Bill: Well I’ll be damned.
They watch as the two women wearing Burqa’s slip through a pair of glass doors under a neon sign reading “The Red Sphinx”, the neon letters buzzing quietly above the building.
Billy: What the hell would the Unit be doing in there?
Bill: Maybe they killed Dion?
Sal: And cannibalized his remains?
Bill and Billy turn to Sal.
Sal [Nodding]: What? It could happen!
Bill, Billy and Sal head through the alleyway and slip through the glass doors into the small club that is the Red Sphinx. Tavi and Courtney have now discarded their burqas and are sitting at the circular stage, cocktail glasses in their hands as they look up at the silver pole expectantly. Dion, the club owner, walks out onto the stage, clad in a sharp scarlet suit, but stops when he notices the three men standing in the doorway. His eyes furrow for a moment, but his expression brightens into his trademark grin.
Dion [Happily]: FRIENDS!! How can I help you?!
Tavi and Courtney slowly turn their heads, looking at Bill, Billy and Sal.
Bill: I think our disguises are foolproof..
Tavi [Sighing and shaking her head]: What do you guys want?
Sal: I’m not a guy!
Courtney: He’s right: He isn’t a guy.
Sal [Angrily]: YOU TAKE THAT BACK!!
Billy slaps Sal around the back of his head.
Billy: Nice work, jackass.
Bill [Angrily]: ALRIGHT GIRLS, CUT THE CRAP!!!
Bill reaches into the back of his jeans, pulling out a Desert Eagle and pointing it at Courtney.
Dion [Panicking]: SON OF ALLAH!! PUT THE GUN DOWN!!
Bill: NEVER!! You ladies are going to tell us just what the fuck you are doing here!!
Courtney [Bluntly]: ….Drinking?
Bill: ….I meant in connection to the Unit—
Tavi: You think we’re here because of the Unit? How cute.
Courtney [Darkly]: We’re here for a drink and not to get bothered by you guys……something which, as always, has proved an impossible task.
Bill simply stands there.
Sal: So you girls aren’t here for a meeting with the Unit?
Courtney: We’re flattered that you think we’re in cohorts with them, but we’re not. We have no idea where they are, either.
Bill [Bluntly]: Damn.
Billy: So, you girls are here to drink—
Dion [Sharply]: It’s Ladies Day, fellas: Get the fuck out.
Billy: But when in Rome—
A bronzed male stripper, wearing nothing but a thin white toga and fake tan, strolls out onto the stage.
Bill [Taken aback]: …When in Rome, get your dick out?
Sal: Shit, so that’s how we’re supposed to look?
Tavi [Giggling]: …Indeed.
Dion: Men, get out.
Billy: Alright, alright!
Bill, Billy and Sal turn around, walking towards the door.
Billy: So they don’t even know anything?
Sal: What now?
Bill: Well, we’re fucked, aren’t we? They could be anywhere. They probably remember where we reside. They probably want to murder us.
Billy [Looking at Bill and Sal]: …………So, drink?
Bill [Grinning]: Drink!
Courtney: Goooo awaaayyyyyyyy..
Vince appears in the doorway, clutching a bust of Nertiti in his arms, grinning inanely as he cradles it.
Vince: I love this place—
An oil-slicked toga flies through the air, landing on Vince’s head.
Billy: I think that’s lucky…..I THINK.
Vince [Wincing]: ………This smells funny.
Dion [Angrily, pointing at the door]: GET OUT!!
Bill quickly bustles Vince out through the door as Billy and Sal follow, shaking their heads bitterly.
Back in the Beale-Walker Square, the mood for Rex is extremely positive as the final interview for the documentary is about to begin. While he is tapping his feet rhythmically, pumping his fists in joy, Johnny and Tim seem depressed and reserved, attending their dull routine of cleaning and fixing their equipment while Rex jigs about.
Rex [Ecstatically]: THIS IS IT! THIS IS IT! THIS IS IT!
Tim: We know: You’ve been saying that for the past hour.
Rex: THIS IS IT!!
Johnny [Impatiently]: WE KNOW!!
Rex stands there silently, grinning brightly.
Rex: Hey, Johnny?
Johnny [Sighing darkly]: ….Yes?
Rex [Grinning inanely]: THIS IS IT!
Johnny gives a guttural sigh, hanging his head.
Rex: Fuck me, lighten up you bloody emos! We can finally get this horrendous tour of duty done with, and after this? We get to go to better places! I heard a spot opened up in Brazil, focusing on Ocelot’s involvement in Carnivale!
Tim: So? Being here feels better. In Ocelot’s Carnivale, the entire Carnivale gets stopped every mile to be checked for weapons. Not to mention that every ten minutes, the crowd has to stand up and sing the Ocelot Song.
Rex: Hey, have you seen the women there?
Tim: Yeah, we have. We’ve also seen the men there, and we’ve seen the gay beaches too. We’ve seen the nightlife, we’ve seen the exotic clubs, we’ve seen the wildlife, we’ve seen the forests, and guess what?[Venomously] IT WAS NICE BEFORE OCELOT STARTED SUCKING PATRIOT DICK AND GOT HIS PMC’S STUCK INTO IT!!!!
Rex falls silent.
Rex [Grinning]: ……THIS IS IT!
Tim lets out a guttural sigh, slumping over.
Dean: Wow, look at this: Manic depressive’s.
Rex giddily spins around, watching as Dean uneasily strolls into the Square, adjusting the brown leather jacket pulled over his white dress shirt and stonewashed jeans.
Rex: Dude, nice jacket.
Dean: Keep your nose on your face and not in my ass, thank you VERY much.
Rex: Jeez, lighten up, will you?
Dean: I am lightened up! I just hate brown-nosers.
Rex: Then sit down and let’s get this done with.
Dean walks between Tim and Johnny, looking at Tim who stares back.
Dean [Bluntly]: The fuck you looking at?
Tim [Sctahingly]: One ugly motherfucker.
Dean stops, grinning and jabbing his thumb towards Tim while nodding at Rex.
Dean: I like this guy.
Rex: Yes yes, sit before he expects petting.
Dean: Nah, that’s Johnny’s job, ain’t it?
Johnny lets out a small cough.
Dean [Smirking]: Hey, it’s all cool here, don’t worry.
Rex: What’s cool?
Rex [Shrugging]: Whatever dude.
Dave: Hey, it is. We’re all tolerant here. Well, to most things.
Rex: What are you intolerant to?
Dean: Samuel. Ghosts. Monsters.
Dean sits down on the chair, looking into the camera lens and giving a cheesy grin before slicking his hair back.
Dean: That good?
Rex: Don’t know, don’t care. Are we ready?
Johnny flicks a few switches on the side of the camera.
Johnny: Yeah, we’re on.
Rex [Happily]: HERE WE GO! Name, Place of Birth, Rank!
Dean: Dean Chevrolet. Lawrence, Kansas. Specialist.
Rex: So, you have a specialty?
Dean [Bluntly]: Yeah, it’s called ‘cooking’.
Rex: Ah, yeah, the kebab shop…but you’re a mercenary, so you surely have another specialty?
Dean: OH, I DO!!
Dean grins brightly as Rex stands there.
Dean [Shiftily]: That’s a secret.
Rex: C’mon, just humour us.
Dean: Humour you? Alright..Knock knock.
Rex: Whose there?
Rex: Chang who?
Dean: WRONG, HIS NAMES CHANG HSU!!!
Dean grins brightly, but Rex’s face falls flat.
Rex [Bluntly]: Wow. I’ve never heard that one before….and I never want to hear it again.
Dean: You said for me to humour you.
Rex [Scoffing]: I mean…war stories! Surely you have good war stories to share??
Dean: Yeah. Like Shadow Moses?
Rex [Rolling his eyes]: THIS story again?!?!?
Dean: or the time we fought against animal zombies?
Rex [Scoffing louder]: …..Are you serious, bro?
Dean: Serious as can be. Man, they stank!
Rex: You do realise how much I DON’T believe you, right?
Dean [Angrily]: No shit. Fine, don’t believe me, but when a Skinwalker is strolling around wearing your face, I won’t come running to save you!!
Rex [Rubbing his eyes]: Whatever. So, war stories? Actual war stories?....Involving how you got here?
Dean: I’m here because I’m here, y’know?
Rex [Scathingly patronising tone]: ….NO WAY. I THOUGHT YOU ARRIVED FROM THIN AIR.
Dean: Alright, whatever: I’m one of the few guys here who voluntarily signed up to the academy. Me? No previous armed forces experience. Hell, most experience I had before the academy was hunting the paran—I mean…………..shooting….cans off of fences.
Rex [Eyes widening]: Are you insane? Why could you possibly want to join the academy voluntarily??!
Dean : Because it’s infinitely better than picking up odd-jobs or errands within a tiny community. I mean, we’re still in a fucking warzone scorched into the earth where the slightest hiccup or error will kill you, and where most PMC’s would love to bathe in your blood, but it’s better than sitting at home. Besides, the pay’s good, the people are a decent laugh, and we get to nothing most of the time! It’s a fuckin’ dream!
Rex: I’m sorry, but I believe your zombies story more. How can anyone want to be here?
Dean [In disbelief]: I JUST TOLD YOU!!
Rex: Wow..Pretty touchy, aren’t you?
Dean [Hissing]: Say that again and I’ll tear your jaw off and beat you to death with it.
Rex: Look, Dean, I really can’t be fucked with this. It’s the last interview, and we want to get it over with, alright? So just…bear with me.
Dean: Please, I can’t even bear Frank--
Rex: We know. We’ve heard from several mercenaries that they cannot bear Frank.
Dean [Straight-faced]: Oh.
Dean: Well…I can’t bear Will.
Rex [Sighing darkly]: WE KNOW.
Dean: I bet you don’t know that I cannot stand Sammy??
Rex: …Who’s ‘Sammy’??
Dean: My pompous-ass brother who I believe has demon blood within him.
Rex: Oh, yeah, I have a brother who acts like an ass too.
Dean [Shifty-eyed]: …..Yes, acts like an ass, that’s what we’ll call it.
Rex: Has anyone told you that you’re weird?
Dean: Multiple times, until they realise I don’t always have to wash my hands when they come for their stomped rat on a pita bread.
Rex [Sarcastically]: Lovely to see a sense of camaraderie.
Dean: I GET ON WITH PEOPLE!
Dean: Karab! He’s a great little guy. Weird, but lovable….Uhh…Jericho! Jerry’s a good laugh, and so are Ivan, Phil and Steve! Billy and Vince are great guys, so are Dick, Maurice and Moe….and Bob’s alright. A bit depressing, but alright. See? I like people here. I’m liked by people too!
Dean [Inanely]: YES! YES I AM! THEY LIKE ME!!
Rex: But you’re tight with these people?
Dean [Clearing his throat]: Yes, we get on well.
Rex: I see.
Rex and Dean fall silent. Dean twiddles his thumbs slightly.
Rex: ……Are we done now?
Dean [Shrugging]: What else can I say? I hunt the paranormal, my brother’s a dick, and I’m here mostly for the pay, the poon and the booze.
Dean: I hunt the paranormal. Fairies, to okamis, to zombies, to--
Rex: Alright, you can stop it no--
Dave [Counting them off on his hand]: --yeti’s, to hookhands, to wendigos, to--
Rex [Impatiently]: ALRIGHT! CUT IT OUT, YOU WEIRD SHIT!!
Dean gives a small grin.
Dean: Well, can I say hi to my family?
Dean: Sammy…Fuck off and die.
Dean nods firmly at the camera, remaining still for a few seconds.
Johnny: Aaaaaaaaaaaand we’re done.
Rex [Jumping up and down, pumping his arms]: WE DID IT! WE DID IT! WE DID IT! WE DID IT! WE DID IT! WE DID IT! WE DID IT! WE FUCKING DID IT! IT’S OVER! IT’S ALL OVER! YES! YES! YES YES YES YES! YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!
Johnny: Rex. Camera’s still on.
Rex quickly flips the switches on the side of the camera, shutting it off before air-guitaring.
Rex [Inanely]: BOW CHICKA BOW BOW WOOWWWOWOWOWOWOWOWWWW!!! WE DID IT!!
Dean slowly pushes himself to his feet, rolling his eyes and walking across the Square.
Dean: Yeah, and I’M the weird one?
Jericho storms past Dean from Walker Street, followed by the hazy form of Emilie floating behind him.
Jericho [Angrily]: LEAVE ME ALONE, GODDAMMIT!!!!
Dean stands still, watching as Jericho storms towards Beale Street.
Dean: LOOK! LOOK! LOOK!
Dean jabs a finger firmly at Emilie, watching as she quickly disappears from view. Rex looks over at where Dean is pointing before laughing.
Rex: I don’t want to give you attention.
Dave sighs, stomping over to Rex, grabbing his ears and slamming him down into his knee before stomping off to Beale Street.
*The Lamb and Flag*
Inside the Lamb and Flag, as purple and orange dashes the sky as the sun begins to set, several mercenaries have already packed themselves into the pub. Oddly enough, a circle of mercenaries, consisting of Phil, Jericho, Vince, Ivan, Bobby, Johan, Bill, Bob, Brick and Frank are sat around what appears to be a circular table-top, torn from one of the tables, while Steve sits at the head of the table, clutching a blue plastic cup over his palm which he is busy shaking roughly. Billy, who is stood at the bar, takes a bottle of Budweiser from Dick before turning around, taking a quick swig and watching them.
Bobby [Impatiently]: C’mon..JUST ROLL!
Billy [Sneering]: …The fuck is this?
Vince: Cho-han! It’s brilliant! The yakuza play it all the time! It’s what the Japanese do!
Billy: Yeah, the Japanese like watching tentacle rape too, so when are you going to bust out the tentacles and shove one up Sal’s ass, huh?!
Sal: What? I didn’t sign up for that!
Phil: Just like how you raped Bill’s ass, Billy?
Billy: FUCK YEH!! I never touched tha lad!
Bobby: According to Bob, you and Bill were involved in hot gay action.
Bill [Angrily]: WE WEREN’T!!!
Jericho: Y’know, heterosexual people don’t normally shove things up people of the same sex’s arseholes.
Brick: What ‘bout that time Dean done shoved a warhead up a guards ass in Shadow Moses?
The table lets out a ripple laughter.
Vince [Smiling]: Man, that was great..
Jericho: Sure miss those days..
Bill [Sighing happily]: Yeah..
Frank: …Remember the time we made REX do an Irish Jig?
Phil: Or the time we were stuck in that elevator with a mutated Phall chasing us?
Maurice’s Voice [From the kitchen]: Man, those were the days, lads!
Bill: The time we fought the Man in the Banana Suit using nothing but a locker with Will inside it..
Phil: Or the time Ahmed Johnson came to our help..
Johan: And the time we escaped in a hail of bullets..
Steve [Sadly]: …My Flareon..
Frank: Or even..EVEN! The time we all marched across the Snowfield, a united horde….stood as one.
A small, united sigh is exhaled from around the table.
Johan [Calmly]: Steve.
Steve slams the cup down.
Steve [Beaming brightly]: Even or Odd, gentlemen?? EVEN OR ODD?!
Phil: Fuck you!
Jericho [Laughing]: Why? The Elephant Man was luckier than you!
Phil: That’s fucking harsh, man.
Steve: PLACE BETS NOW!
Ivan [Shrugging half-heartedly]: …..Even.
Steve raises the cup, revealing the dice faces: A four and a two.
Steve [Beaming]: SIX! EVEN!!
Phil leaps to his feet, pointing at Jericho.
Phil [Inanely]: HA!! FUCK YOU, JERRY!! FUCK YOU!!!
Jericho [Snarling]: Sit down, cunt.
Dick: Keep it down!
Dick [Shrugging]: Because your voices annoy me.
Frank: Speaking of irritating voices…Where’s Lynch?
Bob: I am so going to tell him that you said that.
Frank [Bitterly]: Do it and I’ll hang you with your own fucking colon!!
Bob: Do it. I dare you.
Jericho: Woah, Bob, found your balls?
Bob [Blankly]: Octopus is gone. All I have now is death.
Dick: Drown your troubles?
Bob pushes himself to his feet, strolling over to bar and slumping onto a stool, tapping the bar.
Bob: Give me what he’s having.
Bob jabs a thumb towards Frank.
Dick: …..Woah, you sure?
Bob [Impatiently]: I SAID GIVE ME WHAT HE’S HAVING!!!
Dick uneasily sets down a plain brown bottle which has been corked. Bob pulls out the cap.
Jericho: The wind-up..
Bob takes a quick swig.
Bill: There’s the pitch!
Bob sets the bottle down, nodding before slowly falling backwards.
Bob hits the floor with a crash.
Billy: Aaaaaaaand he’s doon.
Bill: Don’t you mean ‘down’?
Billy: Fuck yeh…….Confederate swine.
Bill [Smirking]: …Thanks man.
Billy: My insults are educated—
Sal: --Unlike you yourself.
Bill and Jericho laugh, slapping Sal on the back.
Jericho [Laughing]: Boy’s still got it!
Frank sighs, taking a quick drink from his bottle and shaking his head. Dick looks over at him blankly.
Dick: What’s wrong, Frank? You’re not sucking peanuts and coins from the floor like usual.
Frank [Sighing]: I…don’t know..I feel….kinda…..down.
Dick [Turning to the bar]: One Punch To The Teeth coming right up.
Frank [Hesitantly]: …Is that a real punch to the teeth?
Dick [Laughing]: I wish! No, it’s just a mixture of absinthe..some Pernod..drop of Drambuie..and some…
Frank: Alright, alright, my curiosity has been piqued.
Frank pushes himself to his feet, walking over to the bar. Dick sprays something into a half-full glass before turning to Frank and setting the glass down. Frank looks down at his now-smoking glass.
Frank: That looks somewhat hazardous--
Dick [Impatiently]: PAY UP AND DRINK UP, RUMMY!!!
Frank sighs, reaching into his pocket, pulling out a few crumpled dollar bills and slams them on the counter before taking a swig of the drink. He suddenly collapses backwards onto the floor, a chest-length beard sprouting from his jaw. Dave walks into the pub, looking over at Frank.
Vince: Hey, are you in or are you out?
Dave [Confused]: Say wha’?
Dave rushes over, sitting cross-legged in front of the table-top.
Dave [Excited]: Sweet! I love a good game of Texas Hold ‘Em!
Vince: …We’re playing Cho Han.
Dave: ……What the FUCK is Cho Han?
Vince: It’s a Japanese--
Dave [Rolling his eyes]: Say no more, you fucking dweeb.
Sal: Dave, 1992 called: They want their insult back.
Dave [Spitting]: Sal, 1980 called: They want you to shut your fucking whore mouth!
Johan: That makes absolutely no sense.
Dave: It’s an insult, Johan, it’s not meant to.
Johan [Calmly]: Yes it is.
Dave: Lucky for you, I’m not suicidal, or I would argue all night with you.
The doors to the pub fly open as Marcus Lynch walks in, rubbing his wrists from the days work of moving and opening crates. Lynch shoots a dirty look at Frank on the floor, before looking over at the gambling mercenaries.
Dick: Boss! Can I get you a drink?
Lynch [Shrugging]: …Does it feel.. ‘off’ to you?
Dick: Lack of morale?
Lynch looks down at Bob, tutting.
Dave [Speaking up]: No offence, Boss Hog, but we don’t exactly have much to be excited about.
Billy: Aye, he’s got a point…No missions…No shooting..We’ve barely got ta shoot anything, and ta top it off: Ten days til Christmas and we got nay decorations up!
Lynch ….. Dick, get the Christmas decorations out.
Billy [In disbelief]: Did yeh nay hear me about me the lack of shooting?!?!?
Dave: I’d love to shoot something.
Phil: Me too.
Bobby [Waving his hand]: Don’t forget me.
Steve [Bitterly]: ALL OF US WOULD!
Everyone turns their head to Steve, who flashes a quick grin.
Steve: Place bets?
Dick scoffs as Steve begins to shake the cup roughly. Lynch turns his head to him, furrowing his brow.
Lynch: With the shitstorm heading our way, we need a day where we can eat, drink and be merry.
Dick: You bastards do that every single day! Why do you need a day set aside just for doing that?! If anything, the Academy should be setting up a mission or two! All you guys do is sit on your fat arses, whining and moping.. ‘Wah! The Unit’s gonna kill me!’, ‘Wah! This beer’s watered down!’, ‘Wah! Moe spat in the sandwiches again!’..What is needed is an injection of swift and blinding violence!
Lynch: …Look, just shut up, will you? I want the tables lined up into one, long table. I want meat. I want alcohol. I want alcohol with my meat. Capiche?
Dick [In disbelief]: LISTEN TO US, FOR FUCKS SAKE!!
Lynch [Storming forward, grabbing Dick’s shoulder and leaning into his ear, whispering quietly]: I’ll make sure a few crates of alcohol meant to raise the morale of Canadian troops mysteriously….disappears.
Dick [Hissing]: Canadians?....
Lynch gives a small nod and Dick looks around shiftily.
Dick [Quietly]: Add in a few crates of maple syrup, some Kraft Macaroni, a few Canadian hams, and a crate of Oh Henry! Bars, and you have a deal.
Lynch: No problem.
Dick turns around, jogging forward and pushes the kitchen door open, whistling shrilly for Moe and Maurice.
Dick [Ecstatically]: BOYS! WE’LL BE EATING LIKE KINGS FROM NOW ON!!
Lynch: Well, I guess I can’t turn back now..I’m the king of these peasants…Need to keep them safe..Keep them ready…Can’t back down now..
Lynch sighs, turning to the table where most of the mercenaries have gathered as the sound of a cup slamming down fills the air.
Dave’s Voice: Odd.
Johan’s Voice: Odd.
Bobby’s Voice: Odd.
Phil’s Voice: Even.
Jericho’s Voice: …Definitely Odd.
Phil’s Voice [Angrily]: That’s it, Jerry!!
Lynch gets on his tiptoes, watching as Phil grasps the cup and slams it against the side of Jericho’s head. Jericho stumbles back slightly, but lunges forward, tackling Phil to the ground as the crowd roar with approval.
Lynch [Sighing darkly]: ….Fuck it, I abdicate.
The scene fades to black.