The Valley of the Tools Episode 16

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic

Rob gets arrested for driving under the influence, Whitney sends a PI to determine what Hannah is doing after work and Evelyn assists Luther in his hunt for a new apartment.

Submitted: September 03, 2018

A A A | A A A

Submitted: September 03, 2018









“A sippy cup to keep a cap on all the screaming of songs. What happens when the drink is gone? Nothing, stuffing down a stifled little yell. Desperation now, numb me at night”

  • Merrill Garbus


(We open on a shot of Luther’s door. Affixed to it is an eviction notice. Luther walks up to the door, groceries in tow, pulls off the eviction notice and stares at it with great shock. He balls up the notice and walks towards the stairs. Daniel is standing there)


LUTHER: Daniel, what the hell is this?


DANIEL: My cousin Jack is coming to town and needs a place to live.


LUTHER: Wha- but I live here!

DANIEL: Not anymore, clearly. You have thirty days to get out.


LUTHER: You can’t do that!

(Daniel takes a step forward)


DANIEL: This isn’t a lease agreement. I can kick you out for any reason or no reason. You have thirty days.


(Daniel pats Luther on the back and walks away. Luther grinds his teeth in a nervous snit. Cut to Rob in the conference room at Altmire-Stone, watching MSNBC. Richard Lui is reporting on the Manafort conviction and Cohen charges)


RICHARD LUI: If you’re just tuning in, we’re following two key pieces of breaking news- one, that Donald Trump’s former campaign manager has been convicted of eight felonies, and two, Michael Cohen has been plead guilty to a litany of felonies and has claimed that “a federal candidate” directed him to make payments to Karen McDougall in exchange for her silence.


ROB: Well, goddamn.


(Whitney comes in with a bag of popcorn in hand)


WHITNEY If an “N-Word” tape could drop, this might be the only time where it’d be buried under breaking news.


ROB: The President’s been implicated in a felony.


WHITNEY: This is a day for the books.


(Whitney sits down)


ROB: I remember when Nixon was accused of a felony, we got drunk as fuck and partied all night.


WHITNEY: You weren’t born when that happened.


ROB: But, that’s what I imagine I might have done. Dear Jesus, I can’t wait to see Trump in shackles.


WHITNEY: Rob, honey, that’s a liberal wet dream. The Justice Department still says you can’t indict a sitting President.


ROB: MMmm, but I just want to see a shirtless Robert Mueller whip Trump on the back- “you’ve been a bad boy, Donny, you’ve been a bad boy!”


(Hannah walks in)


HANNAH: I thought you guys fired Miles. (Hannah sits down) And I didn’t think you would replace him, Rob.


ROB: Just LOOK at this news, though!

WHITNEY: Maybe I’m jaded, but I think Trump will be fine. He’ll just keep revoking security clearances and firing his political enemies and Republicans won’t say anything.


HANNAH: Plus, he’ll keep firing missiles at buses full of Yemeni children-


WHITNEY: Yeah, and insulting our brave intelligence professionals, you’re right!

HANNAH: That’s not what I said.


ROB: Who cares what you said?! Look at what THEY’RE saying! Sarah Sanders can’t guarantee that no “N-word” tape exists! Is this the end stage of the Trump Presidency? To find out, buy my book- (Rob takes out a book entitled “AMERICA GOT TRUMPED- the story of how America got Trumped” accompanied by a picture of Rob putting a cigarette out on Trump’s Walk of Fame star while holding a PBR and wearing sunglasses”) “America Got Trumped- the story of how America got Trumped”.


WHITNEY: Kind of a redundant title.


HANNAH: Are you a resistance grifter now?


ROB: I’m a man with deep faith in the American people’s ability to fight tyranny by giving me money.


(Luther comes in)


LUTHER: Are we gonna start this meeting or keep our eyes glued to the TV? (Luther sits down) My dad once said, “TV will rot your brain”, and as evidenced by this President, he was right.


ROB: Is your father still with us?


LUTHER: Not really. He’s serving forty years in Federal Corrections. His bunkmate is Blagojevich.


ROB: God, I’m sorry. What does he do with his time?


LUTHER: Mostly watches TV.


WHITNEY: Speaking of which, we should make some. (Whitney opens up a folder) What’s the 411 on hiring a replacement for Miles?


(Hannah takes out a stack of resumes as Rob mutes the TV)


HANNAH: I’m combing through resumes, but no one stands out yet. This guy- (Hannah picks up a resume) was fired by Aaron Sorkin for being too sanctimonious.


ROB: Well, then he’d be perfect for our message-heavy programming.


WHITNEY: Rob, you know as well as I do I want our message to be subtle. (Whitney turns to Hannah) Are there women in that pile?


ROB: If I had a nickel for every time I’ve been asked that-


WHITNEY: Shh. Are there?


HANNAH: Yes, but I need to keep looking.


WHITNEY: Okay. Rob. Any word from CBS on Hannah’s pages?


ROB: No, nothing yet.


WHITNEY: Really? It’s been almost a week. Have you called to check in?


ROB: …Well, no, but… (beat) I’ll do that as soon as I can.


(Focus on Rob looking embarrassed and distracted)


WHITNEY: …Great. Luther. Any writers for “untitled battered women’s shelter project” that we need to pay attention to?


(Cut to Rob fixing himself a drink in his office. There’s a knock at the door)


ROB: Come in. (Whitney comes in and shuts the door. Rob turns around with a rum on the rocks in hand) You want a drink?


WHITNEY: You’re not supposed to drink in the office.




ROB: So, do you want a drink or not?


WHITNEY: What was that today? You never called CBS?


(Rob sighs)


ROB: I have a lot on my mind.


WHITNEY: You always do.


ROB: Did you lose two fathers this year?


(Whitney winces)


WHITNEY: I’m probably never going to see my parents again.


ROB: Your parents are bad people- (Whitney raises an eyebrow) okay fine, mine are too, but not my mom!


WHITNEY: Rob. Take a load off. Go somewhere with Lilly.


ROB: She’s out of town.


WHITNEY: Then go out with McKenzie and her dipshit boyfriend. They’re always doing something.


(Rob shrugs)


ROB: Maybe.


WHITNEY: After all you’ve been through, you deserve a break. So you can get back to slaving away for me.


ROB: We work together.


(Whitney smiles)


WHITNEY: Yes we do.


(Whitney leaves. Rob sighs. Cut to McKenzie in her office, scrolling through her phone. Rob comes in and she quickly puts it down and types gibberish on her keyboard)


ROB: Relax.


(McKenzie takes a deep breath and looks at Rob)




ROB: You manage my business affairs, you’re gonna have a few free moments.


MCKENZIE: What can I do for you?


(Rob scratches his face)

ROB: Nothing, just… (Rob sits down) I know you and Kevin go out a lot, and I was hoping to


(McKenzie perks up)


MCKENZIE: Ooh, you wanna join us? We’re doing karaoke tonight. Partially, it’s a going-away party for Ryan.


ROB: I’ll let you know if I can make it.


MCKENZIE: You sought me out, Rob.


ROB: My people will let your people know.


(Rob nods and leaves)


MCKENZIE: I AM your people!

(Cut to Luther walking outside of the 9150 Wilshire building. He receives a text that reads simply- “Karaoke 2nite?” with a smile emoji, microphone emoji and flame emoji. It’s from McKenzie. A bus roars to a stop in front of Luther. Several people get off as Luther notices an ad on the side of the bus- a picture of Evelyn in a suit, her arms crossed, bearing no smile. The ad reads “EVELYN PROST- Apartment Hunter, Call 424-890-5075”. Luther is dumbfounded, and texts McKenzie back- “sure”. Cut to the karaoke bar. Ryan, Kevin, McKenzie, Luther and Rob sit in a booth as Matt Ball sings “I Got a Feeling” by the Black-Eyed Peas on stage)


MATT: I got a feeling! Ooooh, ohhh- that tonight’s gonna be a good night. That tonight’s gonna be a good night! That tonight’s gonna be a good-good night, tonight’s the night! Let’s live it up! I got my money! Let’s spend it up!


(Pan over to the booth as Matt’s singing falls into the background. Rob slams down a tequila shot)


ROB: Ooooh! They don’t make tequila like that anymore!

RYAN: I want a shot.


ROB: Bar’s right there, kid.


MCKENZIE: Rob! It’s Ryan’s going-away celebration, pick it up for him!

KEVIN: I would do it, but I only know Ryan from when I caught him crying in my closet a few weeks ago.


RYAN: You mean when you forcibly held us in your house against our will?


KEVIN: WHAT?! When did that become the official version of events?!


ROB: I’ll get you something, Ryan.


(Rob scoots out of the booth and heads to the bar. A female bartender in her late 20s heads over)


BARTENDER: What can I get for ya, Rob?


ROB: I’d love a tequila shot for that- (Rob points to Ryan) late-stage mall goth over there, and how about a Dark & Stormy for daddy?


BARTENDER: Could you be slightly less creepy when ordering drinks?


ROB: If you have a problem, take it up with Altmire-Stone- actually, don’t! They might take that seriously. You’re cool, right, Valerie?


(Valerie rolls her eyes and starts fixing the drinks. Rob turns to Ryan, pounds his chest and points at him. Ryan smirks and nods. Suddenly, Evelyn walks in, as robotic as always, and approaches the bar. Luther immediately notices her and perks up. Valerie serves Rob his drinks and slides over to Evelyn)


VALERIE: What can I get for you, Evelyn?


EVELYN: I’d like a gin & tonic, and my next three drinks are, in order, whiskey-coke, gimlet and an Aperol Spritz. Do you have that?


VALERIE: I think so, but you may need to remind me-


EVELYN: Write it down.


(Valerie nods and begins making her drink. Rob brings the drinks to the table as Luther moves past him and approaches the bar. Valerie hands Evelyn her first drink)


VALERIE: Do you want to start a tab? What am I asking? You have three drinks lined up after this.


LUTHER: I’ll get all four of them.


EVELYN: Oh my. What a cheap ploy to win my affections.


LUTHER: Cheap or not, I’m doing it.


(Luther hands Valerie his card. Valerie shrugs and runs the card)


EVELYN: …I suppose I won’t turn down free drinks.


LUTHER: You need all the money you can save, right? With your grocery store job- oh, you know what’s crazy? I saw a woman who looked just like you and had your same name on the side of a bus earlier today.


EVELYN: That is interesting. But you know what they say, a day with no coincidences is the least likely thing of all. Anyway, nice talking to you-


(Evelyn begins to move, but Luther steps in her way)


LUTHER: Evelyn. (The bartender places Luther and Evelyn’s drinks on the bar) You forgot your drink.


(Evelyn takes the drink)


EVELYN: Thank you.


(Evelyn moves to leave again)


LUTHER: I need a new apartment.


(Evelyn stops in her tracks and turns to Luther)


EVELYN: …You do? (Luther nods) You know this is why I don’t tell men about my real job, right?


LUTHER: I ain’t lyin’.


EVELYN: Is that right?


LUTHER: Hey I could show you my eviction notice, let’s go.


EVELYN: Very well, then. Mail it to me.


LUTHER: Can I at least tell you my price range?


(Evelyn huffs)


EVELYN: Go ahead.


LUTHER: A thousand to seventeen hundred a month.


EVELYN: Ah. Well. Then you want our- (Evelyn takes a folder out of her purse) discount selection.


(Evelyn plops the folder on the bar. Luther opens it and rifles through the listings)


LUTHER: Why are they all in Santa Monica?


EVELYN: That’s where I’m based. Do you have a problem with residing in Santa Monica-


LUTHER: No, no, of course not, I was just, wondering. (Luther hands the folder back) I’d like you to show me some of these places.


(Evelyn stuffs the folder back in her purse)


EVELYN: Set up an appointment with my people.


(Evelyn finishes her drink, places a cigarette in her mouth and makes a B-line for the door. Luther smiles. Cut to Hannah’s acting class. Every student is paired off, each of them staring into the other’s eyes with an uncomfortable intensity. Hannah is staring into Xandra’s eyes. The middle-aged, turtleneck-dawning acting instructor chaperones them with the grace of a philosopher-king)


ACTING INSTRUCTOR: …Don’t break eye contact. This is about vulnerability. Let your partner examine your soul.


(The instructor walks by Darla checking her phone and slaps her hand)



ACTING INSTRUCTOR: Let go of distractions, just exist in this moment with this person.


XANDRA: (Whispering) When does Roswell make us kiss?


(Hannah giggles as Mrs. Roswell walks over to Xandra and Hannah)


MRS. ROSWELL: It’s Hillary, Xandra. And I would encourage you all not to use humor as a defense mechanism. Be vulnerable in this moment without a hint of irony or distance.


(Hillary walks away)


XANDRA: (Whispering) There’s another party at my place tonight, 10 o’clock.


HANNAH: (Whispering) Oh, maybe I should skip this one, Whitney gets worried-


XANDRA: Red, you’re not missing this one. I couldn’t live with myself if you missed this one. It’s gonna destroy you.


(Hannah smirks)


HANNAH: Sounds fun.


(Cut to Xandra’s palatial penthouse apartment. Music is blasting, people are drinking and dancing, Xandra, Darla and Hannah are sitting on the couch, drinking and talking with a group of others)


DARLA: Something about Roswell is so pretentious-


XANDRA: Try “everything about her”.


HANNAH: She’s nice, though.


XANDRA: I feel for your childhood if that’s your definition of “nice”, red.


(Hannah smiles)

HANNAH: She’s passionate. People sometimes mistake it for rudeness.


(Xandra finishes off her drink)


XANDRA: Well, I’m passionate about getting another fucking drink! (Xandra taps her glass incessantly) Jerry?!


(A finely groomed young man named Jerry comes over and pours Xandra another drink)


HANNAH: That’s just being rude, though.


(Xandra chuckles)


XANDRA: You’re adorable. Jerry is my good friend.




(Hannah nods)


XANDRA: Even though I’m his employer, he’s still one of my best buds. Isn’t that right?


JERRY: Yes, ma’am. Would anyone like a side of cocaine with their drink?


(Jerry pulls out a silver platter of cocaine lines)


HANNAH: Oh, wow.


XANDRA: Leave it on the coffee table. Thanks, Jer-Bear.


(Jerry nods and leaves the platter upon the table. He walks away)


DARLA: Finally. Let me at that shit.


(Darla takes a straw)


XANDRA: Hey! Bitch, we have to pray first.


(They all laugh, including Hannah, who appears more than a tad uneasy. Darla snorts half a line and takes a moment to take in the rush)


DARLA: Shit, that’s good! What is that, Peruvian?!


XANDRA: I don’t ask questions. (Xandra snorts half a line) Yeah, that’s Peruvian. (To Hannah) Hannah, do you want some?


HANNAH: No, I’m fine. Thank you.


DARLA: Come on, Hannah, just a tiny bump-


XANDRA: Darla. She said “no”.


(Darla is caught off guard, but sheepishly nods and backs off. Cut to Hannah and Xandra sitting by the pool a little later, talking as their feet soak in the water)


HANNAH: I can’t believe you built this off of Instagram modeling.


XANDRA: You probably think I managed to use just the right filters and ended up with a penthouse apartment in Malibu.


HANNAH: No! I’m not discounting it, you worked hard for this. Modeling’s a competitive business.


XANDRA: Yeah, and I don’t use filters. Unless it’s sepia tone to hide the weird birthmark on my lower back.


HANNAH: Yeah, but then you look like you’re from an exhibit called “A Series of Daguerreotypes; Prostitutes of the Old West”.


(Xandra laughs)


XANDRA: Oh my God. Have you ever read about the women who opened brothels in the old west?


HANNAH: They were badass bitches.


XANDRA: They built the west. We wouldn’t be here without them. (Xandra scoffs) Sometimes I wonder where I would be if I pursued sculpting like my parents wanted.


HANNAH: Your parents wanted you to pursue sculpting?


XANDRA: Did your parents pressure you to do anything?


HANNAH: …Not my parents. The only thing they pressured me to do was not be a lesbian.


(Xandra chuckles and grabs a miniature bottle of schnapps. She offers it to Hannah. She takes it and swigs it)


XANDRA: You didn’t listen to them then, why would you listen to anyone else now?


(Hannah smiles. Cut to Rob at the bar, drunkenly talking at McKenzie)


ROB: (Slurring) You know what, Kenz?




ROB: Those nights we slept together-




ROB: No! No! Those nights we slept together, they were fun! There shouldn’t be anything wrong with admitting that! How was I supposed to know I would be with Lilly over a year later!?


MCKENZIE: You knew you were with Lilly when you- you know what, never mind.


ROB: Wait, no, hold on, talking is important. Communication makes world go “oh hey, I like that”.


(Rob slams his drink back)




MAN: (OS) You know what, Shelly!? If you can’t handle how much I work, you don’t have to live in my goddamn apartment, you hear me!? Oh, you’re scared now, huh!?


(Rob looks over with a furrowed brow)

ROB: Hey! (Pan over to a brown-haired man in a sweater, early 40s, and his brunette, late 30s girlfriend sitting at the bar) Leave her alone!

MAN: Mind your own business, beardy!

(Rob stands up)


ROB: That woman deserves your respect! I respect women, motherfucker!


MCKENZIE: Oh, Christ.


(The man stands up)


WOMAN: Mike, don’t-


ROB: Shut up, this is our fight.


(McKenzie throws her arms in the air)


MIKE: You respect women, huh? That’s not what I’ve heard on the news.


(Rob angrily throws a punch at Mike, it knocks him back)



(Rob’s friends rise from their booth, concerned. Mike punches Rob back and Rob knees Mike in the stomach)




(Quickly, a tall black bouncer grabs Rob and another bouncer grabs Mike)






BOUNCER: Come on, buddy, it’s time to go.






(The bouncer physically throws him out of the bar, onto the street. The other bouncer lets go of Mike)


MCKENZIE: He is just incapable of being convincingly progressive.


KEVIN: I think he’s just drunk.


LUTHER: He’s probably gonna try to drive, somebody ought to stop him. (Luther looks around) I’m on it. (Luther walks outside and sees Evelyn smoking her cigarette) Did you see a tall guy, shirt two sizes too big-?


EVELYN: Rob? Yes, he drove away in his automobile despite my vigorous protestations.


LUTHER: …How vigorous were these protestations?


EVELYN: Reasonably vigorous.


(Luther sighs and walks back inside, greeting McKenzie and Kevin at the bar)

LUTHER: Rob’s gone.


KEVIN: Shit.


(McKenzie shakes her head and then receives a text. It’s from Hannah. It reads “If Whitney asks, I’m with you and Kevin. Thanks for covering my ass ????”. McKenzie sighs and puts her phone away)


MCKENZIE: What do we do?


KEVIN: I say we go outside for a cigarette before we’re summoned to go on stage again-


MCKENZIE: About Rob.


KEVIN: I know. (Beat) I know you hate to hear this, but he’s an adult. Technically. He makes his own decisions. Even if they might kill him or other people. Hey. (Kevin places a cigarette in his mouth) So do we, right?


(Kevin walks outside. McKenzie looks down, clearly in some worry. Cut to Whitney sitting in her darkened living room, as the TV glows in the foreground. She’s staring at the bright light emanating from her phone; a text from Hannah reads, plainly, “Out with McKenzie & Kevin. Sorry you had to work late!” Whitney angrily tosses her phone on the coffee table. Cut to Kevin and McKenzie smoking outside the bar. McKenzie extinguishes her cigarette under her feet)


MCKENZIE: I gotta use the restroom.


KEVIN: Come on, I’m almost done.


MCKENZIE: You can smoke without mommy dearest, Kevin. I’ll see you inside.


(McKenzie enters the bar)


KEVIN: …Mommy dearest? (Kevin gets a call from Whitney. He picks up) Hello?


WHITNEY: (On the phone) Hey, Kevin! Can I talk to Hannah really quick? She’s not answering her phone.


(Kevin puts out his cigarette)


KEVIN: Hannah? She’s not out with us tonight.


(Cut to Whitney in her living room, blood boiling)


WHITNEY: …Interesting.


KEVIN: (On the phone) Maybe she’s-


(Whitney hangs up. Cut to Kevin)


KEVIN: Working late, or… (Dial tone) wow. (Kevin puts his phone away) Rude.


(Cut to Rob speeding down the highway, clearly very intoxicated, as he blasts “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond)


ROB: (Singing) SWEEEET CAROLIIINE! BAH DAH DAH! GOOD TIMES NEVER SEEMED SO GOOOOD! (He swerves in and out of his lane, and finally a police sirens flashes behind him) Oh, fuck. (Rob pulls over to the side of the road and takes a deep breath as the police car parks behind him. He takes out a tin of mints, opens it, and sees only weed in there) Shit.


(Rob closes the tin and throws it in the back as the officer, a black female officer named “Officer Stevens”)




ROB: Uh-huh? Yes?


OFFICER STEVENS: Do you realize how fast you were going?


(Rob scoffs)


ROB: Couldn’t-a-been, (Rob puts a cigarette in his mouth) going faster than- (Rob lights it and exhales) thirty-five.


OFFICER STEVENS: Sir, you’re on the highway, you had to have been going faster than thirty-five.


ROB: That’s what I recall, but maybe your information is more accurate, I dunno.


OFFICER STEVENS: You were going ninety. And swerving in and out of your lane.


ROB: But would you be willing to testify under oath about that shit?




ROB: Doubtful.


OFFICER STEVENS: Sir, could you put that out?


ROB: Sure, hang on. (Rob throws the cigarette out the window right on the officer’s feet, much to her dismay) Would you mind stamping that out?


OFFICER STEVENS: Sir, step out of the car.


ROB: Oh, come on! One favor!?



(Rob sighs, opens the car door and stumbles out. Stevens shoves him against the car)


ROB: The fuck!?


OFFICER STEVENS: You’re under arrest for driving under the influence and drunk and disorderly conduct!

ROB: WOULD YOU BE WILLING TO TESTIFY ON THAT?! (Cut to a shot of Rob getting his mugshot. He looks rough, holding a plaque that says, “LOS ANGELES POLICE” and a long ID number. Cut to Rob sitting in the drunk tank with a litany of other slobbering, half-conscious drunks. Rob is staring at a birthmark on his jail-mate’s leg. It looks like a profile of a man with a long beard) …Is that the Devil?


(The dude glares at him. An LAPD officer enters the cell)


LAPD OFFICER: Mr. Altmire? (Rob looks up) You made bail. Your girlfriend is outside for you.


(Rob nods and stands up. The officer leads him out of the cell. Cut to Lilly driving Rob home. Rob looks out his window in shame. Lilly looks angry)


NPR: California Congressman Duncan Hunter Jr. and his wife Margaret Hunter were indicted Tuesday on charges of improperly using campaign funds for private use.  A two-year investigation found that the pair used political money to pay for their children’s tuition and spent thousands of dollars at shopping malls, Washington restaurants and surf shops. Hunter was the second congressman to endorse Trump and is the second Congressman in recent days to be indicted. It is unclear how long it will be until every Republican politician is in prison. This is NPR.


(Lilly turns down the radio)


LILLY: You could go to jail for this.


ROB: Can we, not, do this right now?

LILLY: This is your second DUI?


ROB: My last one was only…last year ago.


LILLY: …Plead guilty. And hope for leniency.


(They sit in silence for a few beats. Cut to Evelyn, now dressed as a realtor, taking Luther through a run-down studio apartment with cracks in the walls and ceilings, a broken fan spinning out of control, one light bulb dangling from the ceiling and blacked out windows)


EVELYN: This is by far the least expensive apartment in Santa Monica. But there’s a catch.


LUTHER: I think this whole apartment is “the catch”.


EVELYN: No, sir. There is a minor bat infestation.


LUTHER: What-?! (Evelyn reaches for the boiler room door) DON’T!

(Evelyn opens the boiler room door and a swarm of bats fly out, causing Luther to duck. Cut to Evelyn leading Luther through another apartment, a run-down place with no doors, no windows and homeless people sleeping in it)


EVELYN: Though this apartment cannot boast of windows, doors or working AC, it does have very cheap cable if you’re willing to steal it from your neighbor. Serendipitously, my gracious friends here are experts in this field.


(One of the homeless men gives a toothy grin)


HOMELESS MAN: We gotta watch Sharp Objects somehow!

LUTHER: Sharp Objects?


EVELYN: It’s some new show, don’t worry yourself about it.


(Cut to Evelyn leading Luther through the Santa Monica apartment where Ashton Delay was murdered. Luther is in awe)


LUTHER: Look at this! You’re telling me this is going for 1000 dollars a motherfuckin’ month!?


EVELYN: Yes. I am.


(Luther walks into the bathroom and examines the floor)


LUTHER: There’s no sign of roaches, rats or any shit like that! (Luther comes back out) There’s gotta be a catch, what is it?




LUTHER: Shit, is this place haunted?


EVELYN: …Maybe.


LUTHER: …What do you mean?


EVELYN: There was a murder here. Fairly recently.


LUTHER: Oh. (Luther leans in) When? Last couple years?


EVELYN: About a month ago.


(Luther is taken aback)


LUTHER: Shit. (Luther shrugs) Well, hey, I don’t believe in guests or none of that. Shouldn’t be a problem. (Beat) Any idea who it was?


EVELYN: A young man named Ashton Delay. Some manner of Gangland execution.


(Luther’s eyes widen)


LUTHER: Fuck. (Beat) Did they ever find out who did that?


(Cut to a shot of Ryan at his desk, doing coverage on a script. Luther walks up to reception and looks at Ryan. Ryan looks up)


RYAN: What?


LUTHER: Good morning to you too, dude. Shit.


RYAN: Sorry, I’m just focused on destroying this young writer’s career because I’m in a bad mood.


LUTHER: I signed a lease agreement last night.


RYAN: Congrats.


(Luther nods. He then grabs a copy of the LA Times and flips it around to show an article entitled “McCain Discontinues Cancer Treatment, Sources Say Death is Imminent”)


LUTHER: Hear about this?


RYAN: Yeah. I met him about six years ago, when I was in D.C. He’s a nice guy when he’s not fighting for genocidal wars and stuff.


LUTHER: …I’m gonna miss you, Ryan. You’re a ray of sunshine.


(Luther walks into the creative lounge as Ryan re-focuses on his studies. Cut to Luther coming into the creative lounger and sitting across from Hannah)


HANNAH: Good morning.


(Whitney pokes her head in)


WHITNEY: Have fun the other night?


(Hannah looks at Whitney)


HANNAH: Yeah. Sorry you had to work late.


(Whitney shrugs)


WHITNEY: It’s alright. I’m glad you had a good time. (Whitney gives a seemingly genuine smile. Hannah smirks back and Whitney walks towards Rob’s office, whips open the door and closes it behind her. Rob turns to Whitney, wearing a full suit) I need your PI.


ROB: What?


WHITNEY: Don’t ask questions. I just need his number.


(Rob shrugs and grabs his number from a drawer and hands it to Whitney)


ROB: Don’t call him before 5pm. He volunteers at a youth shelter. (Whitney glares at Rob) Okay, he plants evidence in people’s apartments while they’re at work.


WHITNEY: Got it. (Beat) What? No oversized Celtics t-shirt?


ROB: I have to go to court today. In fact. I’m going right now. I’m gonna clear my good name.


WHITNEY: Wait, what’s the charge?


ROB: Drunk driving. And actually, I’m not clearing my good name. I have a bad name. Which is why I’m pleading guilty. I could go to prison for a year. Anyway, see ya.


(Rob hurriedly strides past Whitney and out of his office)




(Cut to Rob standing before a Judge named Derek Ming in an LA County Court. His lawyer sits beside him)


JUDGE MING: Mr. Altmire, in the case City of Los Angeles V. Robert Altmire, how do you plead?


ROB: Guilty on all counts, your honor.


JUDGE MING: The defendant having pleaded guilty, it is up to the Judge’s discretion on what kind of penalties should be assigned. Let me deliberate.


(Rob’s lawyer stands up)


LAWYER: Your Honor, it should be noted for the record that Mr. Altmire is a white male celebrity.


(The lawyer sits down)


JUDGE MING: Your contribution is appreciated, counsel, but the Judge has come to his decision. Mr. Altmire, you are sentenced to serve one month of house arrest.


ROB: This is a grave injustice.


JUDGE MING: Court is adjourned.


(Ming slams the gavel and exits to his chambers. The lawyer stands up and faces Rob)


LAWYER: Rob, baby, this is the most lenient punishment you could have gotten.


ROB: Drew, how am I supposed to work with a goddamn ankle bracelet?!


DREW: Aw, Robby, Robby, Rob! You work from home! Lilly can suck you off while you’re filling out Excel spreadsheets, it’ll be beautiful! Don’t worry about it, come on!

(Rob sighs)


ROB: If only I was more privileged.


(Cut to Rob sitting in his living room as an electronic bracelet is affixed to his ankle by a sweaty technician. Lilly looks on as the technician stands up, his job completed)


TECHNICIAN: Alright, it’s pretty simple, if you get more than a five-hundred feet from your front door, this thing starts beeping and gives you sixty seconds to return, if you don’t, it calls the fuzz automatically, pretty standard, understood?


ROB: Uh-huh.


TECHNICIAN: Great. If you have any questions, look it up. Have a wonderful day.


(The technician curtly exits. Lilly faces Rob)


LILLY: Rob. Look at you.


ROB: Gladly.


LILLY: No, it’s not a compliment, you look like shit. Now you’re literally in a prison of your own…purchasing. You know what I mean.


ROB: What is it you mean?


LILLY: You need to see someone. Addiction counselors can do house calls. Which is good, because I’m emotionally stunted.


ROB: I know.


LILLY: You know what?


ROB: …That I need help. Luckily, I know someone.


(Cut to Whitney sitting across from Rob’s PI Todd Gates, in her living room)


WHITNEY: Her name is- (Whitney puts down a high school yearbook photo of Hannah) Hannah Delaney. She’s been lying to me.


TODD: Cheating?


WHITNEY: I don’t know.


TODD: So, it’s up to me to find out.


WHITNEY: Yes. Tail her after work today. I guarantee you she’ll be out.


TODD: How do you know?


WHITNEY: Because I’ll be working late.


TODD: On what?


(Whitney takes out a bottle of rum)


WHITNEY: On this.


(Cut to Whitney sitting in her office, sipping on rum. Hannah comes in and Whitney hurriedly hides the rum and unconvincingly types gibberish on her keyboard. Hannah sits down)


HANNAH: It’s 5:45.


WHITNEY: I know. (Whitney melodramatically rubs her temples) Man, have I got a backlog of work to do- I haven’t had time to itch between my boobs.


HANNAH: You’re working late again?


WHITNEY: ‘Fraid so. I’ll be- (Whitney whips out a lantern and lights it) burning the midnight oil, for sure.


HANNAH: Babe, that’s a fire hazard. And it’s still light outside. And we have electricity.


WHITNEY: Not for long if I don’t finish this work. You go ahead, enjoy yourself.


HANNAH: Okay. See you later then. (Hannah stands up) Love you. (Beat) Love you!

(Whitney looks up)


WHITNEY: Love you, too.


(Hannah smirks and leaves. Whitney leans back. Cut to Todd Gates pulling up to Xandra’s apartment building in Malibu- “Loftwood Rich Heights”. He pulls out binoculars and spies Xandra and Darla smoking weed on Xandra’s balcony on the fourth floor. A party rages inside. Hannah joins them on the balcony and takes a toke of their joint)


TODD: There you are. (Todd pulls out a dart gun and aims it) Wait. (Todd opens his glove box and peeks at his contract with Whitney. In bold, red letters near the bottom it says “DO NOT TRANQUILIZE” and underneath Whitney & Todd signed their names and put the date as “8-23-18”) Never mind. (Todd puts the dart gun away) Damnit.


(Cut to Hannah, Darla and Xandra on the balcony. Hannah coughs as she hands the joint back to Xandra, who hands it to Darla)


XANDRA: Do you eat spicy food, red?


HANNAH: No, my god, it makes me nauseous.


(Xandra smiles)


XANDRA: Adorable.


DARLA: At least she’s trying new things. (Darla takes out a plate and makes a perfect line of cocaine on it) That’s more than I can say for my bitch-ass brother.


HANNAH: How old is he?


DARLA: Thirteen.


(Darla snorts half her line)


XANDRA: How’s the TV business?


HANNAH: Slow and frustrating. An armada of tiny penises running around looking for something to fuck.


(Xandra cracks up)


XANDRA: Now you know how I feel.


(Hannah chuckles)


HANNAH: I swear, even the well-intentioned men seem to get horny every time they start writing for female characters.


DARLA: That’s so true. That reminds me, I need to take off my top and bra. (Darla removes her shirts and brassiere) That’s better.


XANDRA: At least you have these to take a load off. Your shoulders look really tense.


(Xandra places her hand on Hannah’s shoulder. Cut to Todd filming this)


TODD: Oh, my.


(Cut back)


XANDRA: Do you want me to work that out?


(Darla hands Xandra the plate of cocaine)


HANNAH: Nah, I’m alright. Thanks, though. (Xandra nods and removes her hand. She then uses her nail to take a bit of coke and snort it. Hannah looks on, curiously) Do you mind?


(Xandra is surprised)


XANDRA: Look at you.


(Xandra takes a nail full of coke and brings it to Hannah’s nose. She snorts it)


HANNAH: Oh, my God.


(Hannah starts sniffing and coughing as Xandra and Darla chuckle)


DARLA: And to think you can’t handle wasabi.


XANDRA: Come on, let’s go inside before the cops notice us.


(Darla, Xandra and Hannah walk inside. Cut to Todd filming this)


TODD: Well…don’t know if I need more than that.


(Cut to Xandra, Hannah and Darla moving through the crowd at her party)


XANDRA: Do you wanna hit the pool?


HANNAH: Yeah, sure! Do you mind if I borrow a swimsuit again, though?


XANDRA: No problem, red! My room’s right here.


(Xandra and Hannah arrive at Xandra’s bedroom door)


DARLA: I’m gonna go to the other side of the room and then come back to this side of the room a few dozen times, sound good? Sound good? Sound good?


HANNAH: Uh-huh, yeah it does.


XANDRA: Good luck, babe. (Darla scampers off as Xandra and Hannah enter her dark and quiet bedroom. Xandra closes the door and flips a lamp) Let me get it for you.


HANNAH: Okay. (Hannah sits on Xandra’s bed as she enters her walk-in closet. Hannah looks around, sees a framed photo of Xandra with her stoic and conservative parents, right next to a framed photo that’s facing down. Curious, she lifts it up and sees Xandra kissing a black man on the Santa Monica pier. She quickly puts it facing down again. Xandra comes out of the closet wearing a bikini) Could you not find it? (Xandra sits next to Hannah and tries to make out with her. Shocked, Hannah pulls away) What are you doing?


XANDRA: Come on, just let go.


(Xandra goes in again, but Hannah scoots away)


HANNAH: Xandra, don’t.


XANDRA: But…but, this face. (Xandra clutches one of Hannah’s cheeks) I want this face.


HANNAH: Xandra. (Xandra lets go of her cheeks) I’m sorry. You know we can’t do this. (Xandra sighs) I didn’t know you were-


XANDRA: I’m not. Or. I’m not lesbian, I just, I know what I want.


HANNAH: …I should go.


(Hannah stands up and heads for the door)


XANDRA: Please tell me this doesn’t end our friendship.


(Hannah turns around)


HANNAH: Of course, it doesn’t. (Beat, as Hannah thinks) Is it safe to drive on coke?


(Cut to Todd sitting across from Whitney in her living room. A devastated Whitney closes the camera after watching the incriminating footage)


TODD: …That’ll be five-hundred dollars.


(Cut to the following night. Rob is sitting on his couch, watching MSNBC cover the death of John McCain. Brian Williams is onscreen)


BRIAN WILLIAMS: John McCain, war hero, U.S. Senator from Arizona and 2008 Republican Presidential nominee, died earlier today at the age of 81.


ROB: Damn shame.


BRIAN: He was, by all accounts, the best person who ever lived.


ROB: Well.


BRIAN: He is our new God now.


ROB: Oh, boy.


(Lilly walks over)


LILLY: I have to go force Subway down my gullet. Your counselor is coming tonight, right?


(Todd walks in, wearing a tweed suit, a blonde goatee and a blonde wig)


TODD: He’s already here!


LILLY: Oh. Nice to meet you.


(Lilly shakes Todd’s hand)


TODD: Mac Miller, at your service.


LILLY: Your name is Mac Miller?


ROB: No relation, I’m sure. Have fun at Subway, babe.


LILLY: Okay. Please cure him, so I don’t have to force emotional support much longer.


TODD: No problem, ma’am.


(Lilly nods and walks downstairs. Todd and Rob both listen for the door to close. It closes)


ROB: Mac Miller? Really?!


TODD: I didn’t know he was an actor.


(Todd sits down)


ROB: …Rapper. (Rob places a cigarette in his mouth) What’d you find out?


TODD: …Whitney’s considering Amanda Siegfried for the Battered Women’s show.


(Rob lights his cigarette and throws the lighter on the coffee table)


ROB: …Amanda Siegfried?


TODD: Yep.


ROB: She killed me off on Penis Envy. The network had to assure TMZ I wasn’t actually dead.


TODD: Well, she’s looking pretty good to Whitney.


ROB: You need to go in on Monday and quash this idea.


TODD: Yes, sir. That’ll be five hundred dollars.


(Rob sighs and takes out two-hundred and fifty dollars in cash)


ROB: You’re a greedy prick, you know that? (Rob hands Todd the money) You’ll get the other half when you’re through.


TODD: You’re the boss.


(Todd gets up and leaves. Cut to Luther pacing around his new apartment. He leans against the kitchen counter and takes a deep breath. He removes his phone from his pocket and calls Evelyn. It rings for a bit. Then, an answer)


LUTHER: Hello? Yes, what’s up, it’s Luther. (Beat) Yeah. I just wanted to thank you for- I know- I… (beat) I know adulation is unnecessary, but it was just super dope of you to help me out like that. I know I paid for it, but… (beat) uh-huh. No, no, I don’t thank the bee-keeper for keeping the bees. I don’t know any bee-keepers, listen, are you free tomorrow night? Uh-huh? (Beat) Yes, I’m interested in you romantically. (Luther chuckles) “Very well then” is good enough for me! See you then, Evelyn.  (Luther hangs up. He pumps his fist with great pride. He ambles on over to his couch and sits on the end of it. He takes out his phone and plugs it into the charger on the wall, placing the phone on his couch’s arm rest. He grabs his laptop and pulls it to his lap, but his elbow knocks the phone off the armrest and into the gap between the couch and the wall) Shit.


(Luther puts his laptop aside and puts his chest to the floor, reaching in the gap to retrieve his phone. After picking up his phone, he notices something. He uses his phone’s flashlight function to identify it. To his horror, he sees a small piece of brain. His eyes go wide and panicky as he stands up, clearly shaken. Cut to Luther looking through articles about the murder of Ashton Delay. Time lapse footage as the night turns into early morning. Luther is still researching the murder of Ashton Delay. Cut to Whitney walking into her bedroom. Hannah is asleep. Whitney walks over to the bed and starts shaking it. Hannah jolts up in shock)


HANNAH: What the hell are you-


(Whitney stops shaking the bed)


WHITNEY: You’ve been lying to me.


HANNAH: What? What are you-


WHITNEY: Damnit, Hannah, you’ve been keeping something from me, I can tell. Where’ve you been going every night? Kevin told me you weren’t out with him and McKenzie the other night.


(Hannah looks down)


HANNAH: …I see.


WHITNEY: What is it? (Whitney tears up) What do you have to tell me?!

(Hannah looks up)


HANNAH: Babe, it’s not that.




(Hannah stands up)


HANNAH: I’m…I’m taking acting classes. And, I’m going to a classmate’s apartment for parties.


(Whitney furrows her brow)


WHITNEY: Where’s her apartment?


HANNAH: It’s Loftwood Rich Heights, in Malibu.


WHITNEY: And what do you do at these parties? Have lesbian orgies?





HANNAH: Because it’s SO easy!? You’ve always wanted to create me in your image, whether you want to admit it or not!


WHITNEY: That is NOT true-


HANNAH: It is! You’ve never wanted me to go into acting, that’s why you got me a job at LA Weekly when I didn’t even ask you to!


WHITNEY: I let you on The Box!

HANNAH: Yeah. And once that fell apart, you forced me into Altmire-Stone.


WHITNEY: Forced you!?


HANNAH: I’m glad to have it, okay? But I want to do this, too.


WHITNEY: Hannah. I want you to do whatever you want to do.


HANNAH: You always say that, and yet your agenda continues unabated!


WHITNEY: Then what do I have to do to prove it?!


HANNAH: Let me audition for AstroManda.


(Whitney is taken aback)


WHITNEY: …What audition?


HANNAH: You know what I mean. If it gets to that stage.


WHITNEY: The levels of nepotism are-


HANNAH: Whitney. You’re doing it again. I’m not asking for the part, I’m asking for an audition.


WHITNEY: …Fine. (Hannah breathes a sigh of relief) You see how much of a mess this becomes when you don’t tell me things?


HANNAH: …I’m sorry.


WHITNEY: …Is there anything else that happened at these parties that you want to tell me about?




HANNAH: No. I swear.


(Whitney, unsatisfied, deflates)


WHITNEY: I need to take a shower.


(Whitney enters the bathroom and shuts the door. Hannah is left confused. Cut to Luther and Evelyn sitting on the outdoor patio of Lothario’s, where Luther used to work. Luther is dressed in a polo shirt and coat, Evelyn is wearing a black dress as a candle light fire roars between them)


EVELYN: This place once employed you?


LUTHER: Yeah. I didn’t think you’d pick this place, but, at least I know what’s good.


EVELYN: How do you know the two of us have similar tastes?


(Luther considers this)


LUTHER: We both like karaoke and hate expressing our feelings.


(Evelyn manages a smirk. Touché)


EVELYN: What do you suggest, then?


LUTHER: The bouillabaisse is pretty good- hey listen, you know that kid that was murdered in my apartment?


EVELYN: “That kid” was twenty-two years old. Why?


LUTHER: The fact that stands out to me the most is that they found only a tripod left at the scene of the crime. Why would this gang want to film Ashton’s murder?


EVELYN: As a warning to other gangs?


LUTHER: I thought about that, but just the fact that Ashton was killed would’ve been sufficient. Filming it is a stupid risk to take. Guess who’s known for taking stupid risks?


EVELYN: Me? Agreeing to go on this date?


LUTHER: Ashton Delay.


(Evelyn picks up the wine list)


EVELYN: Which wine do you think pares with bouillabaisse and a cigarette?


LUTHER: I researched this kid. He was a reckless, impulsive sociopath. (Evelyn lights a cigarette) I think he was about to film something, and then, something went wrong.


EVELYN: What are your hobbies and interests?


LUTHER: If we went to the Best Buy closest to Ashton’s apartment, and find out who purchased a tripod or a cheap camcorder that Sunday, we could find the person and see whether he knew Ashton.


EVELYN: How do you know they purchased it that day?


LUTHER: So, now you’re interested?


(Evelyn scoffs)


EVELYN: I mean…it’s a fascinating murder, but we’re not the police.


LUTHER: The police suck ass. (Luther grabs Evelyn’s hand) Let’s say we get out of here and get our hands dirty?


(Evelyn is shocked but intrigued. The waiter walks over to them)


WAITER: Excuse me, ma’am, you can’t smoke on our patio.


EVELYN: I’ll smoke elsewhere, then.


(Luther and Evelyn get up and, bounding with nervous energy, leave the restaurant. Cut to Noel manning the reception desk, writing coverage on his laptop. Todd comes in, dressed in a jumpsuit, fake beard and cap all while holding a watering can)


TODD: (Husky affectation) Good morning, my good man! Plant guy here. Don’t you feel the sunshine in your heart, today?


(Noel stands up)


NOEL: Yes, I do, sir! It bleeds out of every living thing.


TODD: Jesus, would you tone it down? I liked the last receptionist better.


(Todd walks past Noel, who is super confused and taken aback. Cut to Whitney in her office. Luther and Hannah sit in front of her desk)


WHITNEY: Okay, so, Dan Harmon is a definite “no”?


HANNAH: I didn’t contact him, but, just look him up and you’ll see that he’s a “no”.


WHITNEY: Goddamnit. Are there any decent guys in Hollywood?


LUTHER: Are there any guys left in this office? Miles was fired, Ryan’s back in New York, Rob’s on house arrest. It’s just me and Noel, and we don’t even pay that guy.


HANNAH: Yeah, but he has benefits.


LUTHER: He does-? Ohhhh, I feel you.


WHITNEY: Alright, let’s talk about Amanda Siegfried-


(Todd walks in)


TODD: Don’t mind me! Just the plant guy. Come to water your plants.


(Whitney squints)


WHITNEY: What happened to Vince?


TODD: Oh, it’s a terrible thing, died in a submarine crash. Luckily, he gave me the job in his will. Go on, pretend I’m not here.


(Todd turns and starts watering plants)


WHITNEY: …Okay. So, Amanda Siegfried, she used to write for Sabrina The Teenage Witch, Sex In The City, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and then she wrote for reality shows for a while. But, more recently, she wrote for Orange is the New Black and-


TODD: YOU KNOW, I heard she’s difficult to work with.


(They all turn and look at him)


WHITNEY: Excuse me?


TODD: Oh, nothing, just ignore little old me-


WHITNEY: No! Why the hell did you say that?


TODD: Well, ma’am. (Todd steps forward) I work in a lot of offices. So I’ve heard a lot of things.


LUTHER: Maybe if you focused on watering instead of eavesdropping, you wouldn’t drown our plants.


(Shot of water dripping out of one of Whitney’s plants)




TODD: I’ve heard she snaps at the slightest provocation. I’m talking throat-shredding screams.


WHITNEY: I don’t think I’ve heard anything like- (Whitney stops dead in her tracks and does a double take) …Todd?!


TODD: What? No, I’m Richard, Richardson! I’ve gotta-


(Todd tries for the door)



(Hannah and Luther get his arms)


LUTHER: Whoa, it is scary how quickly I complied with that.


WHITNEY: Did you really think a- (Whitney pulls off his fake beard) FAKE beard and a- (Whitney throws off his hat) hat would be enough to fool me!?


TODD: It worked for a while!



TODD: Nobody, I sent myself, I-


WHITNEY: Pull his ear.


(Luther pulls his ear hard)




LUTHER: Shit, how are you doing this?!


WHITNEY: I don’t care if it takes all night-




(Whitney nods and Luther lets go of Todd’s ear. Hannah and Luther let go of his arms. Whitney sits on the desk)


WHITNEY: …That son of a bitch.


TODD: He wanted to remain relevant-




LUTHER: STOP treating us like henchman!

WHITNEY: Oh. Right. Sorry. Get the hell out of here.


(Todd grabs his beard, hat and runs off)


LUTHER: What are you gonna do, fire him?


(Hannah raises her hand)


HANNAH: Can I be there when you do it?


WHITNEY: No, we can’t do it. He’s a partner, even if we do fire him, we have to buy him out.


LUTHER: That would set us back a ton.


HANNAH: So, what do we do?


(Camera moves in on Whitney’s face)


WHITNEY: We declare war on him.


(Cut to black)



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