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Bierstadtland

New -- October 1, 2003

 Multiple Choice

Episode VIII

                       

EXT:  BIERSTADTLAND

David falls directly into the lake he had previously described in his fantasy.  The lake is cold and he comes up out of the water breathless.  With rapid strokes, he begins to swim to shore as quickly as he can.  He is soon wading the last distance, and now naked, steps on to the shoreline.  Standing there shivering on the rocky and grassy shore (but with a bright sun overhead), he notices his nudity and then begins to look around.  His shivering is interrupted as his mouth suddenly falls open.

DAVID

The Bierstadt!  By heavens, I made it!  Aris!

He looks around, but there is no sign of Aris.  His smile dampens considerably, as he puts his hands on his hips and looks heavenward. 

DAVID

Good luck, sweetheart.  Donít forget me.

David turns back to the scene before him.  A big grin slowly creeps back on his face, as he begins to move about.  Then he shivers again.

DAVID

Brrrr.  Maybe if I rub two sticks together...

 

IRIS

How about some hot coals?

David turns to see Iris approaching him.  She is now dressed in a colorful, rainbow style outfit.  The material has the consistency of cotton, but is a series of broad stripes interwoven like a mat.  She is carrying a small clay pot, with just a hint of smoke rising from it, and in the other hand, more clothing in the same style as what sheís wearing.

DAVID

We meet again.

 

IRIS

Nice to see you too.

Iris unabashedly sizing up David tosses him the clothes.

IRIS

I brought you something to wear.  Later, Iíll show you how to make your own.  Itís pretty easy, and can even be fun.  As for a fire, where would you like it?

After glancing around, she turns to him.  He can only smile and look around.

DAVID

Where would you suggest?

 

IRIS

Over by those rocks.  Sheltered from the wind, and with little chance of it getting out of control.  Besides, the rocks look ideal for Feng Shui, such that you might want to build a future home there.

 

DAVID

Great!  I think.

 

IRIS

Fine.  Iíll get right on it.  Donít forget to put your pants on.

Iris walks away toward the rocks, while David watches her with a bewildered look.

 

EXT:  LATER

David and Iris are sitting around a small fire, close together.  The sky is near twilight, and a light breeze is evident.  He is eating fruit and a variation of corn-on-the-cob. 

IRIS

The twilight wonít last long.  Kehu, the second sun, is due up within an hour or so. Yeah.  Two suns.  You may find having twin suns to be quite interesting.  During parts of the year, when the planet is on the long end of the ellipse, itís pretty much a normal Earth-type, day-night rotation.  But other times, we get less than two hours of darkness a day.  Of course, youíll find very little need for sleep here.  Itís a very energizing place.

Suddenly, David notices a flashing akin to the phasing showing up in the sky behind Iris.

IRIS

The reality here is not quite set yet.  Not enough people.  The theory is that it requires something like 144,000 unencumbered souls to form what weíve begun to call a ďQuantum Consensus RealityĒ.  Until then, until we have enough consensus thoughts, parts of this world will keep phasing in and out -- material reality somehow just beyond its grasp.  But weíre getting there.  And I must say your choice of a Bierstadt painting is a great idea -- a great contribution.

 

DAVID

Iíve wanted this for a long time.

 

IRIS

Good.  Youíre emotionally attached to it.  That will help a lot to maintain this reality.

 

DAVID

How many unencumbered souls are here...?

 

IRIS

About sixty thousand.  Later if you like, Iíll show you around: Meet some of the others, find the local energy ley lines, the...

 

DAVID

The what...?

 

IRIS

Thereís a subtle energy grid about the planet, which if you know how, can be used for transportation.  Thatís how I got here today. There are also sound vibrations which can be used to help you build your home with rock and other natural materials -- makes it easy to move really heavy objects, for example. Finally, I can show you how make clothes, find food, that kind of stuff.  Of course, youíll also be learning about sacred geometry, zero-point energy, and so forth...

 

DAVID

This place is fantastic!  At the same time, itís a bit intimidating -- so much to learn.  Itís nice to know youíll be helping me.

 

IRIS

Like I used to say -- when I was still in the old reality called Earth -- The only viable social security is going to be your friends.

 

EXT:    BIERSTADTLAND -- WEEKS LATER.

Iris is sitting, looking at the lake.  Behind her is an attractive stone cabin, flowers neatly planted around it, and enough other items to suggest a homestead which has grown and prospered.  A doe is munching the greenery nearby, until she abruptly looks up and starts moving away at an easy but rapid gait.  Iris sees the movement, and then looks up toward something in the sky approaching rapidly.  David comes flying in without any mechanical devices, but out of control.  He hits the ground running and stumbling, and heading directly for the lake, where he ends up going in head first into the water by the shoreline.  After which, he manages to pull himself back up, and stagger back out of the water.

DAVID

Whoa!  Flying these ley lines is great -- if I could just catch on to the landing part.

 

IRIS

Iím sure youíll get the hang of it eventually.

 

DAVID

One would hope so.

 

IRIS

So, show me your big project.

David smiles, and gestures to a place up the hill.

DAVID

Ah, yes.  Come into my parlor, said the slider to the spy.

 

EXT:  BIERSTADTLAND -- TOP OF A ROCKY RISE

David leads Iris up to the top of a rocky rise, where extensive stonework is in progress on what appears to be an elaborate system of rock paved paths along the sides of the hill.  In addition, on various sides of the path system are large, standing stones -- boulders of the caliber of Stonehenge and Avebury in England -- all situated in a large complex of rock.

IRIS

This is going to be the labyrinth?

 

DAVID

Yeah.  The Cretan design.  One way in and one way out.  Sort of a soul journey.

 

IRIS

You certainly picked the ideal place.  The energy here is fantastic.

 

DAVID

You should try the center.  Massive trip!

 

IRIS

Thanks, but I think Iíll wait until itís done. Do the whole thing from start to finish.  Take full advantage of your idea.

 

DAVID

Youíre always welcome.  Everyone is.

 

IRIS

 Iím sure the thought will get around. 

IRIS then hesitates, taking a careful look at David, who is looking admiringly at his work.

IRIS

So tell me: Have you heard from Aris?

 

DAVID

No.  Have no idea where she is or what sheís doing.  It was such a joy to find this place.  But without someone to share it with...

 

IRIS

Reminds me of the old adage:  Everyone needs something to do, something to hope for, and someone to love.

 

DAVID

Hey!  Two out of three ainít bad.

 

IRIS

Youíre work is certainly grounding.  And you know what you can eventually become.

 

DAVID

Meanwhile, sheís learning her potential.

 

IRIS

And you have no urge to join her...?

 

DAVID

Not any more.  Iíve got to allow her her space.  Besides, I used to be into excitement myself. At any costs.  But now... Itís like none of it counts.  All the other dramas, the other traumas: theyíre just choices you donít have to make.

 

IRIS

No regrets at all?

 

DAVID

Well... maybe just a little bit.  There's always the appeal of blood pounding excitement of a battle for something important.  But it mostly passes.  It's just that the choice is always there.

 

IRIS

Speaking of choices, Iíve some of my own. Time for me to take a running leap...

Both smile and hug each other with affection.  Then she turns and walks between two of the large standing stones, waves to him, and then becomes very quiet and very still.  David watches her, as currents of air ruffle her clothing, and her arms and hands slowly rise up, until her whole body begins to slowly levitate.  Her eyes still closed, her body moves forward and begins to accelerate.  Within seconds, she is out of sight, angling off past the peaks surrounding the lake where David first arrived in Bierstadtland.  He smiles, and looks around the ground before him.  Quietly, he grabs a clay pot and starts down the hill.

 

EXT: THE WATERFALL (BIERSTADTLAND) -- MOMENTS LATER

David stoops down at the edge of the waterfall, holding out the clay pot.  Jeremiah suddenly flows past, knocking the pot out of Davidís hand and onto the adjacent ground. Jeremiah ends up in the pool of water below the waterfall.  The intruder, with a sword in his hand, thrashes about for a moment, only slowly recovering his wits. 

When he sees David, a slight smile crosses his face and he slowly begins walking out of the pool with his sword swinging -- as if sensing the weight and feel of the finely tempered steel weapon.  David can only look dumbfounded.  Jeremiah is still in his elaborate sword-fighting garb and has a disgusted look on his face as he approaches David.  His sword remains lowered but ready.  Then he stops and simply stares at David.  David watches every move.

JEREMIAH

Iíve been sent here to kill you.  Once and for all, eliminate your meddling.

 

DAVID

Uh, I donít think so.  Thatís not what itís about here.  Just look around.

 

JEREMIAH

Impressive.  Your idea?

 

DAVID

Some of it.

 

JEREMIAH

Ah, yes: The ideal retreat -- a home away from home, where everyone knows your name, where all the problems of the world seem distant.  Until, of course, they arrive on your doorstep.  Which is why Iím here.  The only question now is whether or not youíve the courage to defend your paradise. 

David tenses, as he glances at the waterfall and then back toward a smiling Jeremiah.

JEREMIAH

Not this time, Mr. Accidental Tourist.  No more bailing out at the first sign of trouble.  You now have whatís called a ďvested interestĒ.  Did you think you and whatís-her-name could drop in and out of every reality, pick and choose whatever looked interesting, and then run when things got rough?  Just for you, the mountain has come to Mohammed.

 

DAVID

Wait a minute!  Iím not buying this!

 

JEREMIAH

You donít have any choice.

 

DAVID

I always have a choice! 

Jeremiah continues to smile cynically.  Silently, he gently swings his sword back and forth.  David watches the sword, his confidence being seriously eroded.  David looks around nervously for a weapon -- but none are in sight.  Then as Jeremiah makes no move other than to get the feel of his sword, Davidís stern expression slowly turns to curiosity.

DAVID

Well?  What are you waiting for?

 

JEREMIAH

You in a hurry?

 

DAVID

No, but... 

 

JEREMIAH

But what?

 

DAVID

You donít seem particularly enthusiastic about getting on with this.

Jeremiah continues to stare at David.  Then, instead of raising his sword, he allows the point to drop to the ground.  He then grasps it as he might handle a cane or walking stick.

JEREMIAH

Actually, Iím not.

 

DAVID

Which means...?

 

JEREMIAH

Iím just wondering if youíre worth it.

 

DAVID

Worth what?

 

JEREMIAH

My disobeying orders.

Davidís expression suddenly brightens.

DAVID

Oh.  So... do you need my resume, a few recommendations from friends?  Did you know I was once an Eagle Scout?

 

JEREMIAH

Actually, itís not about you.  Itís about me.

 

DAVID

The appeal of obeying someone else's orders waning, perhaps.

 

JEREMIAH

Something like that.

David raises his eyebrows, an understanding smile on his face.  Jeremiah returns the smile.

Until something catches his eye.  David follows his gaze to look further up on the hill where Ugly Dude and the FIRST RUNNER UP in the ďUgly DudeĒ contest are standing. Both uglies are scowling and dressed to kill.  Slowly the two behemoths begin sauntering down the hill, two sets of ugly smiles beginning to cross their ugly faces.  First Runner Up walks with an arrogant strut, swinging his broadsword.  Ugly Dude focuses on Jeremiah.

UGLY DUDE

We figured you was too gutless to do your duty.  So I brung my cousin to take care of you while I do your job.  As for this other clown, Iíve been wanting to impale him for centuries.

Ugly Dude begins moving directly toward David, swinging his huge sword in sweeping arcs.  His companion follows, but angles slightly to go after Jeremiah.  Jeremiah pulls a second sword out of his back pack, and tosses it to David.

JEREMIAH

 Here!

David catches the sword, and then dodges as Ugly Dude takes his first, clumsy swing.  David quickly begins dancing to avoid the ugly behemoth, dodging and weaving to avoid the heavy swings.  Ugly Dudeís expression turns into one of frustrated anger.

UGLY DUDE

Stand still and take it like a man!

 

DAVID

Do you have any idea just how dumb that

statement is? 

Ugly Dude lunges again at David, who uses his sword to block the move, just as First Runner Up goes after Jeremiah.  David and Jeremiah are quickly separated, as David retreats under Ugly Dudeís free swinging broadsword.  David continues to back up, and begins to show immediate signs of fatigue as he blocks each of Ugly Dudeís heavy handed broadsword swings.  David keeps glancing around, looking for help.  Then Davidís face lightens, and his jaw relaxes.  A slight smile of hope appears on his face.

DAVID

Okay.  What I need is Excalibur!  Now!

A shimmering quality suddenly appears on Davidís sword.  As Ugly Dude tries another overhead swing to pound his adversary into the ground, David raises the newly improved version of his sword to ward off the blow.  ďExcaliburĒ slices through Ugly Dudeís sword, causing the bad guy to momentarily look surprised. 

As David smiles broadly, Ugly Dude begins to smile himself, and promptly pulls out a laser pistol.  David leaps to one side to avoid the first blast.  Ugly Dude laughs viciously, and begins firing randomly in the general direction of David, who runs like crazy, ducking among rocks and avoiding the onslaught. 

Turning one corner, he sees yet another mean-looking offshoot of the Ugly Dude family. Raising his sword, he fires something akin to a bolt of lightening at the new arrival, which takes out the man immediately.  Taking a close look at the tip of his sword, David takes a moment to blow the smoke rising from it and strike a heroic pose.

Suddenly, several laser blasts from different directions hit all around him -- all returning fire on his recently announced position.  An alien space craft begins a strafing run over him, causing him to raise his sword -- now transformed into a huge laser rifle -- and fire. Then David ducks as the shipís return fire craters the area around him.  The battle heats up as he glimpses Jeremiah and First Runner Up exchanging fire, and other ships becoming involved. 

David takes off running and reaches the top of rocky rise among the standing stones, which give him the questionable strategic advantage of height and a fortress-like structure surrounding him.  There he looks around, surveying the situation.  Jeremiah comes running in from one direction, dodging laser blasts from a strafing spacecraft.  A momentary lull ensues, and the two new partners look at each and quickly take stock of the situation.  To the right, Ugly Dude and six alien ground troopers are moving toward their position.  To the left, First Runner Up and another half dozen alien ground troopers are closing the vice.  In front and behind them, phalanxes of yet more aliens are approaching.  David and Jeremiah exchange looks.

DAVID

Well, Tonto, faithful Indian scout.  Looks like we are in big trouble!

 

JEREMIAH

What you mean, ďweĒ, White Man?

David looks at Jeremiah, who merely smiles.  David grimaces and turns to face the enemy as well.  Then, just beyond where Ugly Dude and his retinue are marching toward them, David sees Iris and Kayleigh standing with several others -- all looking on with keen interest.  Davidís adrenaline rush abruptly fades, and he straightens, marveling at the sight with a puzzled look.  As he looks around at the menacing forces, he breathes a heavy sigh.

DAVID

Okay, thatís it!  Cut!  Itís a wrap!

Immediately, the spacecraft phase and vanish from sight, while Ugly Dude, First Runner Up and the plethora of alien ground troopers disappear.  Jeremiah remains, standing a few yards from David and looking very confused.  Iris and some of the other onlookers then arrive at Davidís side, congratulating him on the drama.

ONLOOKER #1

Wonderful show!  Very exciting!

 

ONLOOKER #2

Such an imagination!

 

ONLOOKER #3

Yes, yes.  Very impressive!  Do let me know when youíre going to be performing again!

As the onlookers file past, congratulating Jeremiah as well, Iris approaches David.

IRIS

 Iím impressed.

 

DAVID

And Iím somewhat embarrassed.

 

IRIS

Donít be.  Weíve all been there.

Iris gives him a hug and joins the others.  Kayleigh, still at a distance, is smiling at David. He waves, whereupon she smiles even more and gently phases out of sight.  David turns, just as Jeremiah walks up, having watched the exchange between Iris and David.  Jeremiah is still looking at a loss, but now is carrying his weapon as if itís no longer of any use.

JEREMIAH

You want to tell me what just happened?

 

DAVID

I let my thoughts get out of hand.  I was relishing some memories of great stimulating adventures.  But then I changed my mind.  Sent it all back.

 

JEREMIAH

You make it sound like we have a choice.

 

DAVID

We do.  Havenít you noticed that by now?

Jeremiah watches David for a moment, a skeptical look on his face.

JEREMIAH

I donít know.  I might not be allowed. I donít exactly have a clean record.  My past, you know, is not exactly a thing of beauty.

 

DAVID

Hey!  Iím not perfect!

 

JEREMIAH

I rather doubt you have any idea of just how much hell Iíve caused.

 

DAVID

Actually, a lot better idea than you might think.

 

JEREMIAH

Lord knows, Iím tired of it.

David sits down on a low lying rock, while Jeremiah looks around at the scenery.

JEREMIAH

It really is beautiful here.

 

DAVID

Pull up a chair and stay a while.  Build a homestead.

 

JEREMIAH

Tempting.  But then again, Iíve always resisted temptation.

 

DAVID

Itís a lot more fun to go with your feelings, follow your bliss.

 

JEREMIAH

Iím not even sure what my bliss is.  Hmmm.  Maybe spend a little time with the loyal opposition.  Undo some karma.

 

DAVID

Whatever.  Itís your choice, not mine.  Itís not and never has been the externals.

 

JEREMIAH

Yeah, maybe.

 

DAVID

Keep in mind that guilt is the most useless emotion in the repertoire.

Jeremiah, with a skeptical eye, looks at David.

JEREMIAH

I seriously doubt youíre right.  It canít be that simple.  On the other hand, it might be interesting to test your theory.  In the process, I might actually undo a few of my doings.  Now that has a certain amount of appeal.

 

DAVID

Trust me.  You wonít be bored.

Jeremiah laughs and turns.  Looking heavenward he raises his arms.  A whirlwind begins to wrap around him, and he quickly disappears in the wind. 

David watches with surprise, smiles broadly, and then stands up.  Seeing his clay pot on the ground, he goes to it and picks it up.  It is cracked with one piece dislodged.  Pulling the broken piece out of the interior, he sets it in place and with his hand mends the break.  Then he holds it up for inspection and smiles. 

Lowering the pot to a comfortable carrying position, he walks to the waterfall to try and once again fill it with water.  Once there, he hesitates, checks the water for falling bodies, and when the coast appears to be clear, holds the clay pot out under the waterfall.  But just as he extends his hand with the pot filling it half full, a futuristic warrior arrives in the waterfall, taking David and the pot into the pool with him. 

David is surprised by the abrupt fall into the water, but comes up relatively calm.  The warrior, on the other hand, comes up fighting.  He is dressed in the most warlike, Star Wars/Star Trek threatening Klingon and/or Romulan Warrior outfit imaginable, and looks as if heís still in the midst of an incredible battle.  He is also wearing one mean-looking helmet, such that heís not readily identifiable.  Scrambling out of the deeper water and into a knee-deep section of the pool, he looks around quickly, attempting to size up the battle situation.  David is still in the water as well, but is next to a rock where he is standing in waist deep water.  Then the warrior slowly turns to him, with infinite menace is the warrior stance.

DAVID

Look fella.  I know I didnít think you up.

The warrior continues to study David and simultaneously search the surrounding area for any threats.  Then turning his full attention on David, the warrior cradles his laser pistol in his second hand, as if fondling it in preparation for its use.

DAVID

Okay, fella.  Cut!  That's it.  This is not my stuff.  No drama.  Just leave, with or without my blessings.  Your choice.

The warrior doesn't phase, doesn't even flinch, and instead continues to look at David for a long moment.  Abruptly, he twirls his laser pistol back into the scabbard and takes off the elaborate helmet, revealing Aris with her long flowing hair and wry smile.  For a moment, she holds the helmet in her hand, bouncing it slightly.  

DAVID

Aris!  But I was just thinking about you!

Aris smiles as broadly at David, and then tosses the helmet aside and into the water, where it sizzles for a bit and disappears.

ARIS

Hi, honey.  Iím home.

 

DAVID

Have a good day at the office?

 

ARIS

It had its moments.  Exciting as hell; at least at first.  Then it sort of faded.  You know: Done that, been there, bought the T-shirt...

 

DAVID

I know what you mean.

 

ARIS

Was that Jeremiah I passed on the way here?

 

DAVID

Quite possibly. 

 

ARIS

Thought I recognized his energy.

 

DAVID

What brought you back here?

ARIS takes a long appreciative look at DAVID.

ARIS

Itís my own fault.  I couldnít stop thinking about you.  Besides, now I know what I can do.  Which is a lot!

 

DAVID

My invitation still stands.

 

ARIS

Thereís just one thing.  What with all the excitement of the battle and all, Iím still pretty turned on right now.  And assuming youíre available...

 

DAVID

Depends on how long it will take you to get out of that outfit.

Aris laughs sexily, and begins to shed pieces of the outfit as if they were all attached with Advanced Velcro (which she dislodges by slapping the respective place on her body and peeling off layers of armor) -- a Klingon Warrior version of a strip (and where there is no hint of a tease).  As she becomes nearly nude, she jumps into the water and swims to where David is.  They kiss and passionately embrace.  Then he steps out of the water, his hand extending down to help her as well.  She jumps up and sits on the same rock as the one on which David is standing.  Then, smiling from ear to ear, she grabs his leg, such that they once again take on the heroic, comic-book pose.  David laughs, at the positioning and holds his arm straight up -- while Aris wraps her arms about his leg. 

DAVID

Shazzam!

Nothing happens.  The beautiful, serene day is undisturbed.  David looks around, chagrin on his face.

DAVID

Hmmm.  Not quite what I had in mind.

 

ARIS

Donít worry, sweetie.  Iíll show you Shazzam!

David smiles at Aris as she seductively stands up and wraps her arms about his neck, planting a ferocious kiss on his eager lips.

FADE OUT TO:  THE END

 

Episode Seven -- Druidland

Forward to:

Screenplays         Short Cut to Fictional Works

 

               

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