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Popo...

New - 21 April 2006

Humanki -- Episode Three

 

DAWN is asleep in an airline seat as she begins to dream. She finds herself in the same crop circle as before. She sits upright, as if suddenly disturbed and alerted. She stands and looks around, studying her new environment. Then, with a suddenly understanding smile, she lifts one arm and makes a broad sweeping wave of her hand (as if experimenting with her powers). The wheat in the crop circle lays down magically and in response to her sweeping hand. Clearly delighted, she smiles even more broadly. Then she sees across her crop circle a lone male figure with a strong family resemblance to KURT and/or ANNA (and whom DAWN will later identify as ENKI). Standing in the ripe grain, ENKI is suddenly enveloped in a bright, white light and disappears. Meanwhile the circle has now increased in complexity and covers a slightly greater area.

The scene shifts to downtown Tlamacas, a bright sunny day (complete with Mexico City smog). A dull red Saturn, dusty and dirty from years of abuse, pulls up at a small cantina in the middle of Tlamacas. ALEX gets out of one side, while DAWN, somewhat more slowly, gets out of the other. The driver, ROGER Jimenez, also gets out, looking around the area while his passengers appraise the locale. The village is dusty and rather bleak. There are few people out on the streets despite the fact it’s later in the afternoon and the sun is no longer as hot as it was. Only the cantina shows any life and it looks as if it’s primarily used by locals avoiding the empty streets.

ALEX

(looking a little disappointed)

Tlamacas.

DAWN

(quietly to ALEX)

We're going to find the "White Lady" here?

ALEX

Let me make a few inquiries.

ALEX walks into the cantina, while DAWN surveys the immediate surroundings. She notices her lips are beginning to chap and pulls her backpack purse out of the Saturn. She then acquires some lip balm, slips her purse over her shoulders and applies the balm. ALEX returns, smiling broadly.

ALEX

There's a "mucho grande hacienda" nearby. We’ll have to leave the car here and go on foot.

(to ROGER)

We'll be back soon. Wait here for us. Okay?

ROGER

Si, Senor. I wait in Cantina.

ROGER walks away, as DAWN talks quietly to ALEX.

DAWN

Why leave the car?

ALEX

Apparently, they don't encourage visitors. So we'll have to pretend to be hiking the volcano, and then find an excuse to drop in unexpectedly. Keep the backpack. It lends credibility.

DAWN

Are you always this devious?

ALEX

I try to be.

The street rapidly turns into a path as it leads out of town, and then into a trail marked with both English and Spanish directions, telling them of routes and dangers on the slopes of Popocatepetl Volcano. ALEX and DAWN look quite normal, save that their mountain hiking equipment is minimal to non-existent. They walk quietly until at one point, ALEX stops, looks at two different landmarks, and then smiles. Without a word, he leaves the trail and climbs directly up the side of the mountain, scrambling along the steep slope. DAWN follows, working to keep up. At one point, she slips on a loose rock and goes down momentarily. Unhurt, she nevertheless is mesmerized by the fact that the single rock rolling down the hill is dislodging countless others. Both she and ALEX watch as rocks, debris and a few tons of gravel cascade down the mountain, showering the trail and below. No one is hurt, but there is a lot of dust.

ALEX

You okay?

DAWN

Oh yeah.

DAWN scrambles up to join ALEX, who is still looking down the slope at the debris.

ALEX

You know. It's actually harder to create a rock landslide than you might think.

(looking admiringly at DAWN)

Phenomenal!

Then he shudders, turns, and continues up the slope. DAWN shrugs her shoulders in reply and follows him. As they top a small rise, they see the White Lady's villa: A white walled, red tiled, multi-building structure, arranged in the hacienda fashion. The building appears to be well maintained and architecturally sophisticated. There is a foreign quality about it and a shape and style more Egyptian than Spanish. Despite some flourishing greenery, there is no sign of anyone in the area. ALEX is studying the layout, when the earth begins to shake beneath his feet. Small rocks, followed by larger ones begin rumbling down the slope, accompanied by a low roar and distant thunderings. He looks at DAWN, who has dropped down in order to steady herself.

DAWN

(defensively)

It's not me!

(gesturing toward the mountain)

The volcano!

ALEX turns to look and sees smoke and ash spewing out of Popocatepetl. ALEX looks around, and then at the hacienda.

ALEX

Come on! Any port in a storm! They can hardly turn us away now!

The two run down the slope toward the nearer of the hacienda's two open gates.

As DAWN and ALEX run into the villa's courtyard, an old man, NANAU, appears across the courtyard. Without a word, NANAU gestures for them to run toward him. They do, and as they approach him, he opens a door in one of the smaller buildings. Gesturing them in, he stands to one side. They enter and he follows them in, closing the door. ALEX and DAWN take a moment to catch their breath.

NANAU

Buenos dias. Mi casa es su casa.

ALEX

Mucho gracias.

NANAU

Norte Americanos, I presume.

ALEX

Si. I mean, yes, we are.

NANAU

You’ve come a long way to witness Popo’s wrath.

DAWN

You don't seem particularly concerned...

NANAU

We will be quite safe here. The ash and smoke will only lay a gentle frost upon the valley. It will be a welcome covering.

ALEX

Thank you for allowing us to take refuge here. We were on the mountain hiking and uh...

NANAU

(quickly noting their lack of equipment)

But you are not climbers.

ALEX starts to say something, but is intimidated into silence by NANAU's uncompromising stare.

DAWN

We came to this house hoping to gain entrance. We're looking for someone.

Both men turn to face DAWN, ALEX’s mouth open and frowning and NANAU abruptly smiling.

NANAU

And for whom are you looking?

DAWN

The White Lady. The Mother.

NANAU

(showing surprise)

And who searches for such a legend?

DAWN

I'm Dawn Riordan. This is Alexander Dukas.

NANAU

Hmmm. I am Nanau, the caretaker here.

ALEX

(aggressively)

Is the Lady here?

NANAU ignores ALEX and his question, focusing his attention on DAWN and smiling.

DAWN

Do you actually live here?

NANAU

Yes. For a very long time now.

DAWN

But the volcano...

NANAU

If you believe it dangerous, why are you here?

DAWN

The White Lady... We need her help.

NANAU smiles as he intently studies DAWN. DAWN winces slightly as if being probed. When NANAU turns to ALEX, his smile lessens, but does not vanish. He turns back to DAWN.

NANAU

The Lady has returned to her home on the underside of the world. She now resides at the last bastion within the Realm of the Storm God. You will find her near the Temple of the Three Windows.

ALEX reacts as if suddenly understanding. NANAU notes ALEX’s reaction and smiles.

NANAU

If you go there, perhaps you might carry from me a message. You might tell her: The frying pan is once again becoming quite warm.

NANAU then laughs, his eyes displaying his delight.

The scene shifts to where ALEX and DAWN are walking back to the Cantina, along a side street of Tlamacas -- now just before sunset.

ALEX

What do you suppose Nanau meant by “Soon there should be much entertainment for you.”?

DAWN appears not to hear, her eyes focused on a far horizon. She slows her pace, lifting her hand slightly to slow ALEX as well. He stops, glances around furtively and at DAWN.

ALEX

What's wrong?

DAWN

I don't know.

Together, they begin to move more cautiously. Approaching an intersection with the town's main street, ALEX cautiously peers around the corner. DAWN mimics his actions. From their vantage point, they can see a large man dressed casually, loitering around the Saturn, as if checking it out. ALEX and DAWN duck back behind the corner.

ALEX

Do you recognize him?

DAWN

No. But I'd like a better look.

Backtracking, they sneak around a back street until they find a small wall much closer to the cantina. Crouched down, they approach the wall and begin observing. The man is still loitering around the Saturn, and a Ford Explorer is parked along the side of the cantina. The cantina's proprietor comes out the front door, followed by ANNA and ROGER. The proprietor gestures in the direction DAWN and ALEX had taken, with ROGER agreeing. ANNA says something to ROGER and the proprietor and both go back inside. ANNA then turns to the man by the SATURN and gives him an order. The man acknowledges and quickly begins the process of searching the interior of the Saturn. ANNA goes back into the cantina.

ALEX and DAWN turn and look at each other, and then back toward the Cantina. ALEX leans close to DAWN as if to plan a conspiracy.

ALEX

I'll make a diversion up the street, allowing you to get to the Saturn. You can then pick me up on the way out of town.

DAWN

I don't think I like this idea.

ALEX

Trust me! I’m good at this.

Frowning but committed to going along with ALEX’s plan, DAWN moves up the side street where the Explorer is parked. As she approaches the Ford, she sees a small side door in the cantina just ahead where, based on the noise coming from inside, is apparently open. DAWN hesitates as she looks at the door. Then she glances inside the Ford. Seeing keys already in the ignition, DAWN shrugs her shoulders and jumps into the Ford. DAWN rolls down the window, and waits.

ALEX (voice over)

Fire! Fire! Help us! Fire!

DAWN (frowning to herself)

In English?

DAWN looks heavenward and turns on the ignition. Putting the Ford in gear she floors it and comes around the corner in front of the cantina in a cloud of dust. The man searching the Saturn had already gotten out of the vehicle and had begun looking up the street -- but showing no apparent inclination to respond in any way. When he sees DAWN screaming around the corner, he acts by pure reflex and jumps out of the way. ANNA walks out of the cantina just in time to see DAWN in the Ford Explorer. ANNA’s eyes widen at seeing DAWN.

DAWN roars further down the street until she sees ALEX running across the street. Just before she runs him down, DAWN slams on the brakes and ALEX opens the passenger side door to jump in. DAWN then floors it again and ALEX falls backward -- only his having a good grip on the door and the seat back prevents him from falling out of the Ford. Then as DAWN make a right turn, she brakes again and the Jeep slides sideways, the revised momentum causing ALEX to be thrown forward and into the frontseat of the vehicle against the dashboard. The door closes of its own accord. Simultaneously, a shot crosses the front of the Ford and blows off the hood ornament. DAWN floors it again and ALEX is thrown back against the seat, where he begins to frantically wrap himself in the seat belt. A bullet then hits the back window of the Jeep. The Jeep makes it around an adobe-wall corner. As DAWN continues to drive up the street, ALEX slowly recovers and sits up in the seat, shaking and wide-eyed. DAWN glances at him.

DAWN

(smiling weakly)

You know, this is the first time I've seen you use a seat belt.

ALEX

What?

DAWN

By the way... "Fire"? In English?

ALEX

I was improvising... As apparently you were.

DAWN grimaces slightly as ALEX glances around.

ALEX

Where are we?

DAWN

(swerving around yet another dusty corner)

I have no idea.

ALEX

Neither do I. Try turning right at the next corner.

DAWN

Right?

ALEX

Right.

DAWN does so and drives down another street. Suddenly they come out into a small plaza adjacent to the cantina where the Saturn can be seen from the rear.

In front of the cantina, ANNA is arguing with ROGER when the man who had been searching the Saturn sees the Ford and points, just as the the Ford disappears down another narrow street. The man then jumps in the front passenger side of the Saturn, while a second man comes out of the Cantina and jumps in the driver’s seat. ROGER scurries to jump in the back seat beside ANNA, as the driver turns the Saturn around in as tight a corner as possible.

In the Explorer ALEX is looking very surprised, while DAWN is concentrating on driving.

DAWN

I think I recognize this as the way out of town.

ALEX

Wonderful... You want me to drive?

DAWN

No.

ALEX

You want me to stop and ask directions?

DAWN laughs. She shakes her head, “no”.

Thus follows the gratutious chase scene on the outskirts of Thalmacas. DAWN continues to drive like a bat out of hell, as the Saturn's driver comes into sight and begins to match her stride for stride. Only the winding nature of the road prevents a gun battle. ANNA’s gunman occasionally sticks his head out the Saturn’s windows in order to take a shot -- only to duck back in as the vehicle swerves and he is almost thrown out of the vehicle. Soon, they are outside the town of Tlamacas.

ALEX keeps looking back nervously. DAWN appears calm, but is intent upon driving. As she comes around one corner, she sees an old cart loaded with stones. She immediately swerves.

DAWN

Hang on!

ALEX reacts accordingly, his eyes wide open. The Explorer hits the cart in a heavy sideswipe, the vehicle bouncing off from the close encounter and the cart collapsing and spilling the rocks onto the narrow road. DAWN keeps driving while ALEX turns to stare at her.

ALEX

What the hell!?

DAWN glances in the rearview mirror and ALEX turns to look back as well.

The Saturn first tries to avoid the rocks on the highway and then hits several of the jagged stones. The car swerves off the road, crashing into a rock wall, and smashing in the right-side front wheel. The motor is still running, but the steering is clearly wrecked. Steam is rising from the front hood, as the gunman struggles out of the car to get one last look at the Explorer. Meanwhile, ANNA struggles to right herself in the back seat. Then she begins to look around for something.

ANNA

(with a sudden realization)

Damn! My telephone's in the Explorer!

ANNA then stares at the three men who have turned to look at her.

ANNA

So! Who left the keys in the ignition?

As they continue on the road to Mexico City, ALEX, beaming, turns to look at DAWN. DAWN is looking back in her rear view mirror, when she smiles, and quickly glances at ALEX.

ALEX

I'm impressed.

DAWN smiles, but says nothing.

Later, DAWN is now driving on a much improved road and ALEX who appears relaxed, is looking straight ahead.

DAWN

You want to tell me where we're going now?

ALEX

Peru. More specifically, Machu Picchu.

DAWN

Why there?

ALEX

Machu Picchu is “the last bastion”, the Inca city the Conquistadors never found. It’s also where the Temple of the Three Windows is.

DAWN

And "the Realm of the Storm God"?

ALEX

The Storm God was the ruling deity of the ancient South American Civilizations. He derives from the Hittites of Asia Minor, in the same manner as do all of the gods of the Incas, Mayans, and Aztecs. Originally, they came from the Old World -- the Sumerian, Egyptian and Indus Valley Civilizations.

DAWN

But how can that be? Aren’t they just myths?

ALEX turns to look at DAWN. He hesitates, and then watches her as he begins to explain.

ALEX

A few innovative scholars now believe that all of the gods and goddesses of the ancient civilizations were in fact extraterrestrials!

DAWN

(raising her eyebrows)

You're telling me that all the mythologies -- Zeus and Hera, Aphrodite, Isis and Osiris -- were really about extraterrestrials?

ALEX

Yes, but they weren’t myths. They were true stories of actual beings. In fact, the ancient Sumerian texts refer to them as the Anunnaki -- "those who from heaven to earth came". These Anunnaki were extremely long-lived extraterrestrials who came to Earth a half million years ago in order to mine gold. They built the pyramids of Teotihuacan and Giza, and for that matter, their technology was probably responsible for all of the other wonders of the ancient world. Eventually, they became known to mankind as the gods and goddesses who ruled over the world.

DAWN

The immortal gods?

ALEX

Not at all. These gods and goddesses had a lot of human personality traits, including their being mortal. There are a variety of stories of several of them dying.

DAWN

And these extraterrestrials came to mine gold?

ALEX

Absolutely. The Sumerian and Babylonian texts were quite explicit about this. But what they didn't say was that it might have been the mono-atomic gold and other precious metals that they were really seeking.

DAWN, wide-eyed turns to look at ALEX, her mouth dropping open.

DAWN

Are you telling me the Manna was what made these extraterrestrials gods and goddesses?

ALEX

Quite possibly. It might be a part of their longevity, as well as their powers.

DAWN

Incredible!

ALEX

There's more.

DAWN glances at ALEX, and then pulls the Ford off the road onto a wide place. Then she turns to him, giving her undivided attention.

DAWN

As you've said before, there's always more.

ALEX, after watching her for a moment, then continues, quietly and matter-of-factly.

ALEX

There were two main gods among the Anunnaki. One was Enki whose name means Lord of Earth. The other was Enlil, Lord of the Command. They were half-brothers and the struggle between them and their offspring over the millennia pretty well defines sibling rivalry. These two were always at odds. But perhaps far more importantly...

ALEX hesitates while DAWN remains silent but intent. Then ALEX continues.

ALEX

Enki and his half-sister, Ninki, were, according to the ancient Sumerian texts, responsible for the creation of mankind.

DAWN

(her eyes squinting skeptically)

Wait a minute! If Enki and Ninki were just extraterrestrials and not gods in the true sense of the word, how did they create mankind?

ALEX

Through genetic manipulation. They cross bred the genes of the Anunnaki, "the sons of God", with Homo erectus, an advanced ape. Enki was the one who said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness." Essentially, Adam was the first test tube baby.

(pause)

The ancient Sumerian texts also make it clear that mankind was created in order to mine the gold for the Anunnaki.

DAWN watches ALEX . Then she turns, puts the car in gear and pulls on to the road again.

DAWN

That's got to be one of the craziest stories...

ALEX

It is that. But it also explains some things. Like why the biblical patriarchs lived for over nine hundred years, why we have junk DNA and excess brain capacity. Humans would carry the genes and the DNA of both the long-lived Anunnaki and the short-lived Homo erectus. But because the offspring may not have been taking the Manna properly, humans end up with an average lifespan of less than a hundred years, with their so-called junk DNA and brain capacity no longer being used.

DAWN

But why would these extraterrestrials deny us the Manna? Or not teach us how to ingest it?

ALEX

I suspect because we were caught between two warring factions: Enlil, who was always against mankind, but who apparently wrote the histories, and Enki, who was always saving mankind. It seems likely that it was Enki and his son, Ningishzida, who covertly kept what little we do know alive for us.

DAWN

And Ninki?

ALEX

She’s the original mother, the extraterrestrial who carried the first half-breed, the "Adama", to term. She is also probably the inspiration for the matriarchal religions which flourished thousands of years ago throughout the world.

DAWN

You mean, until the patriarchal gods took over, and imposed a male-dominant society...

ALEX

Yes. But there is another Sumerian goddess: Inanna, a granddaughter of both Enlil and Enki. Her birth may have been intended to bridge the gap before the two warring factions.

DAWN

(suddenly intent upon the next question)

But exactly whose side is Inanna on?

ALEX

Probably her own. From all her stories, I’d have to assume she has her own agenda.

DAWN

That’s probably a good bet.

(her frown waning slightly)

And the "Storm God"?

ALEX

That's a younger son of Enlil, named Ishkur. I think we’d have to assume that he’s definitely not on the side of humanity.

DAWN

We seem to be talking here about a seriously dysfunctional family of extraterrestrials.

ALEX

I'd say that's a pretty accurate description.

DAWN

At the same time, we're about to go charging into the Storm God's lair...

A cellular telephone rings. Both are startled. ALEX looks in the back seat, discovers the cellular telephone, grabs the instrument and sets it on the front seat between them. He looks at it, and then at DAWN. When she shrugs her shoulders, he takes a deep breath, and answers it.

ALEX

Hello?

A split screen now shows KURT in his War Room, while ALEX is still in the Explorer.

KURT

Doctor Dukas, this is Kurt Fox. I believe it is time to cease these pointless games.

ALEX

Exactly which games did you have in mind?

KURT

Running about the Mexican Highlands in a stolen vehicle for one. Dealing in mono-atomic elements for another. And inasmuch as I know where you and your companion are and where you’re going, you might want to consider an alternative plan. Fortunately for you and Miss Riordan, my associates and I are always open to negotiating with worthy and interesting adversaries.

ALEX

And if we’re not prone to negotiate...?

KURT

It’s a very dangerous world, Doctor. One’s only true social security is one’s friends.

ALEX

You’d like a meeting with us...

KURT

As I say, individuals with talent and expertise.. and flexibility... have unlimited opportunities. Provided they choose the right associates.

ALEX

I’m sure. But I think I’d like to discuss this with my companion.

KURT

And I will need a decision within the hour.

ALEX

Understood. You’ll be hearing from me.

ALEX quickly hangs up. He looks at DAWN.

DAWN

Who in the world was that?

ALEX

Someone named Kurt Fox.

(looking at the cellular telephone)

They know where we are.

DAWN

I wish I did.

Neither say anything further as they continue along the city streets of Mexico City. Then as they approach a relatively modern hotel, ALEX points to a parking space just beyond it.

ALEX

Stop at that corner up ahead.

DAWN

(as she pulls over to the curb)

What for?

ALEX

Leave the keys, and come with me.

DAWN does so and the two walk away from the vehicle toward the hotel. As they approach it, ALEX grabs a taxi just as it is unloading a hotel guest. He and DAWN get into the taxi and ALEX gives the destination.

ALEX

Airport. And pronto! We're in a hurry.

The driver rapidly accelerates into traffic. As they pass by the Ford Explorer, they see two young thieves already in the Ford and starting it. The Ford pulls out and for a moment follows the taxi. Then the Ford turns off and proceeds down a side street. ALEX turns to DAWN with a broad smile on his face. DAWN silently smiles in return.

FADE OUT

 

Episode Two --Come Fly With Me  

Forward to:

Episode Four -- And the Lady

               

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