“A TALE OF TWO TRIALS PART 2”
“Justice delayed, justice denied. An unjust lawyer motto and pride only to show their wit as they ride in the hall of justice with all stride. But never for lawyers who abide by truth their conscience can't hide”
(We start with Ethan, Micah, Ryan, Kimberly, Jacob, Madeline and Rob sitting in the Donahue living room. Ethan is sitting back in his recliner listening to Mozart’s 12th symphony with his eyes closed while everybody looks at him. This goes on for about ten seconds)
MICAH: What are you uh…doing?
ETHAN: I’m relaxing, Micah. I’ve adopted some relaxation techniques to help me deal with the stress of impending jail time.
MICAH: Ethan, I assure you that’s not going to happen.
ETHAN: Oh yes, they only have documentation, eyewitnesses and (He stands up and takes a glass of water and throws it at a wall, to everyone’s shock) FUCKING TERRIFIC LAWYERS!
JACOB: That relaxation method seems to work well.
ETHAN: I’m sorry, okay? Rob, could you pick that up?
KIMBERLY: Rob, don’t, pick it up yourself, Ethan!
MADELINE: Dad, I have been trained in hypnosis, have a seat and I will relax you.
(Ethan sits down and Madeline goes over and sits near him)
MADELINE: You are about to go into a deep trance. You may close your eyes, if that tickles your fancy. (Ethan closes his eyes) Listen only to the sound of my voice. At a certain point, you may lose track of what I am saying to you. This is perfectly okay when this happens. Just allow yourself to drift along and let hypnosis happen. I want you to imagine you’re on a beautiful beach. The waves are riding up against the shore; you can feel the sand in between your toes, you can hear the seagulls…playing with each other-(Ethan opens his eyes) Why’d you open your eyes?
ETHAN: Because you said seagulls were playing with each other! Seagulls can’t do that; it took me out of the experience!
MADELINE: They weren’t playing volleyball or anything, they were probably-
ETHAN: Shitting on me! Just like everything in this world.
(Ethan turns off Mozart, which was playing on his iHome)
MICAH: Ethan, you’ve got to relax. You’ve got to get your game face on, the court reconvenes tomorrow.
ETHAN: Shit, it does, doesn’t it?
MICAH: Yes, and that doesn’t give us a lot of time to sure up our case.
ETHAN: How did they get that evidence?
MICAH: David Merkely snap chatted me last night, saying they got it from Detective Zimmerman.
KIMBERLY: How did he get it?
JACOB: I’m sure he has resources.
RYAN: But Dirk’s Warriors had something to do with it.
JACOB: Who are they again?
RYAN: Oh my God.
ETHAN: I need a woman’s touch on this case. Sue did pretty well, right? Why doesn’t she accost Zimmerman to see where he got that evidence?
(Sue walks in holding coffee)
SUE: Really? I could do that.
ETHAN: Yeah, but you should probably have a man go with you. Micah?
MICAH: Yes sir!
(Micah and Sue leave the room)
MADELINE: Should we go on TV and cutely profess your innocence so the jury feels bad for us?
ETHAN: No, you guys are past your “cute little kid” stage.
(Cut to Ryan, who’s suddenly in a Pikachu costume)
RYAN: I’m cute!
ETHAN: How did you-look, I don’t want to use my kids as props for my own personal gain, people who do that are despicable. Like the balloon boy’s dad.
JACOB: Well I’ll keep my mouth shut unlike that kid.
KIMBERLY: Nobody has picked that glass up yet!
(Cut to Mayor Sarandon having sex with Ellen Alexander in his bed)
MAYOR SARANDON: ELLEN!
MAYOR SARANDON: LET’S DO IT ON THE BATHROOM FLOOR!
ELLEN: FOR THE LAST TIME, WE’RE NOT RE-ENACTING “IT WASN’T ME”!
(Cut to Mayor Sarandon lying in bed next to Ellen afterwards)
ELLEN: That was terrific, tubby bear.
MAYOR SARANDON: I learned from the best.
ELLEN: That axillary intercourse thing was…adventurous.
MAYOR SARANDON: Well, I’m a sexual safari leader, Ellen.
ELLEN: It was more like you were a submarine commander continuously crashing into a rock.
MAYOR SARANDON: Dick in the armpit’s not for everyone.
(Ellen flips on her side and faces Mayor Sarandon)
ELLEN: Do you think you’ll get off?
MAYOR SARANDON: …I think the 2011 law’s our best bet. But it’s not looking good.
ELLEN: Who would replace you if you went to jail?
MAYOR SARANDON: Either Ethan or Evan. But if I’m going to jail, Ethan’s going to jail, so…probably Evan.
ELLEN: So either way, I’m in a relationship with the Mayor?
MAYOR SARANDON: (Smiles) I supposed so.
ELLEN: Well I’d much rather it be you.
MAYOR SARANDON: Right…Ellen, can I ask you something?
MAYOR SARANDON: If you are so unhappy with Evan, why don’t you leave him?
ELLEN: I don’t know, mostly for Scott’s sake. Scott needs a good family structure; especially since him and other hipsters think man-on-mandolin action is normal.
MAYOR SARANDON: I know, how did Mumford have sons if they fuck musical instruments?
ELLEN: Welcome to the music industry.
MAYOR SARANDON: Well…isn’t Scott going off to college soon?
MAYOR SARANDON: Well, there you go.
ELLEN: There I go? (Mayor Sarandon starts necking her, but Ellen removes his head from her neck) What do you mean?
MAYOR SARANDON: I think I made it pretty apparent.
ELLEN: I don’t know how serious this is yet, Brian.
MAYOR SARANDON: Fine, then I guess we’ll see, right?
(Brian starts necking her again. Cut to Detective Zimmerman on the phone at his desk at the Hansbay Missing Persons division)
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Yeah, I’m friends with the President of China, it’s like, whatever. Who cares, right? (Pause) I mean, I guess he’s good at COD. He’s more of a Gears of War type of guy though- (Sue and Micah enter stage right) I gotta go. (He hangs up and stands up) What is the meaning of this? This is highly unorthodox!
MICAH: Not really, we just walked into your office.
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Who are you people?
SUE: Oh, you haven’t heard of us? Maybe this’ll refresh your memory.
(Sue puts a copy of “Shark Night: 3D” and the December 22, 2012 copy of the Hansbay Quintessential with the side headline “Donahue picks Micah Schwartz, Sue Farenthold as defense lawyers in corruption case” right next to the headline story, reading “This woman baked cookies!” with a picture of a woman holding cookies next to it. Detective Zimmerman sits down and studies what Sue has given him)
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: I see. You’re Ethan’s lawyers?
MICAH: We are.
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Why did you gave me Shark Night 3D?
SUE: I had a cameo in there.
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: What do you people want?
MICAH: We were wondering how you attained the evidence that is being presented against our client.
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Dumb luck, I suppose. I just stumbled upon them.
SUE: Where’d you stumble upon them?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Would you get this? I LITERALLY stumbled upon them. I was just walking down the street and tripped over a bunch of incriminating documents about Ethan and Brian. Who would have thunk it?
MICAH: You expect us to believe you?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Believe whatever you want. You have no proof that I got that evidence using nefarious means.
SUE: What kind of nefarious means could you be referring to?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: You’re not going to chime me into that game, sweetheart.
MICAH: Perhaps a court order will chime you into that game…sweetheart.
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Good luck getting a court order. Judge Marwick is a notorious stickler for decorum and procedure when you ask him for things. He makes his son bow three times when he leaves his bedroom. His own bedroom!
MICAH: I’ll bow to any limey Judge to get you to give up where you got those documents!
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Fine, go get a court order. I dares ya!
SUE: Why don’t we? It seems like an important detail.
MICAH: We will then! Be back in fi with a court order!
SUE: It’ll probably take longer than five minutes.
MICAH: Yeah, because of lady troubles.
SUE: Oh my God…
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: That’s so true, brother!
(Micah and Zimmerman high-five)
SUE: You two are buds now? We’re about to get a court order against you!
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: It’s bro code.
SUE: To get court orders against each other?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: No, to high-five in celebration of misogyny!
MICAH: I should know bro code; you learn about the Bro Code Act of 1968 on the first day of law school.
SUE: Can we go?
MICAH: After Zimmerman and I wrestle.
(Cut to Ryan, Jacob, Madeline, Rob and Ethan sitting in the living room. Ryan is no longer wearing his Pikachu costume)
JACOB: Dad, what are you going to do if you go to prison? How are you going to handle it?
ETHAN: Jacob, I’m a big kid, okay? I’m forty-ish.
RYAN: Seven years off.
ETHAN: Fine, thirty-three!
ETHAN: Anyway, I can make it through. I’m an adult. I got my own casa. I got a driver’s licencia. I got a nice coche, I got a pasaporte.
MADELINE: You’re not going to have any of those things in jail.
RYAN: Dad, if you go to jail, how are we going to come and see you?
ETHAN: Conjugal visits. Maybe bring me a cake?
JACOB: Prison guards have got to see through that at this point.
ETHAN: You don’t have to put anything in it, I just want a cake.
RYAN: Well…I’m just surprised you’re going to jail before I ever did.
ETHAN: Why are we so resolute that I’m going to jail? Look, I could still get off, it’s not like this is the first time a family member of mine has gone to the slammer.
MADELINE: When was the other time?
ETHAN: My father Leonard went to jail for a year when I was six.
JACOB: Really? Why?
ETHAN: It was 1971, the year that tobacco advertisements were required to display health warnings, plus tobacco advertising was banned on television. My dad had left the clothing industry and had begun to work at an ad firm in 1969. While at the firm, he and a few other employees stole a thousand dollars’ worth of cigarette ads with warnings on them and replaced them with the older cigarette ads without the warnings. The judge he stood before was very liberal, and because the value of the thievery was a thousand dollars, he was legally allowed to sentence him to a full year in prison.
RYAN: Wow, what was he thinking?
ETHAN: I don’t know, but…his kids grew up without him. When he left I was five, but when he got back I was already six. I was basically the man of the house, I had a job too.
MADELINE: Not to diminish how tragic this is, but…what are you talking about?
ETHAN: No man should miss out on the pride of seeing his son graduate Kindergarten.
JACOB: Didn’t Grandpa Leonard and Grandma Lynn move to Burlington?
MADELINE: We should go visit them!
JACOB: That’d be pretty fly.
ETHAN: I don’t know, I feel like I should stay here to see if Micah and Sue come here with Zimmerman’s balls on a velvet pillow.
RYAN: If feel like that would be comfortable.
JACOB: If his body was attached to them.
MADELINE: Alright then, so can we go to grandpa’s house?
ETHAN: …Ah, what the hell? Micah can call me on my cell phone or put out the Star of David signal in the north sky.
(Ethan, Ryan, Madeline, Jacob and Rob get up.
ETHAN: Rob, you can’t go. Sorry.
ROB: Why not?
ETHAN: You’re not a Donahue and this house needs a strong leader while I’m gone, okay? You’re the man of the house for the next couple of hours, capiche?
ROB: I won’t let you down.
ETHAN: You’d have to try really hard to.
(Cut to Mayor Sarandon and Ellen sitting at Mayor Sarandon’s dinner table, both dressed in street clothes)
MAYOR SARANDON: So, what do you want to eat?
ELLEN: I don’t know, how about something sloppy and messy and haphazard, like we’re kids again?
(Mayor Sarandon chuckles)
MAYOR SARANDON: Fabby!
(Fabio comes over)
FABIO: Yes sir?
MAYOR SARANDON: Make us ribeye steak with butter in the pan.
FABIO: Yes sir.
ELLEN: Ribeye steak’s a little much, don’t you think?
MAYOR SARANDON: Not at all. Didn’t you want something messy, sloppy and haphazard?
ELLEN: Yeah, but like, waffles or pop tarts, something keeping with the torrid and unabashed theme of this relationship.
MAYOR SARANDON: It’s not even going be medium rare, don’t worry.
ELLEN: Brian, you know what we should do?
MAYOR SARANDON: What?
ELLEN: We should go to a hotel and bang there. We’ll get separate rooms and we’ll just casually walk by each other and slip into one of our rooms and just go crazy on one another.
MAYOR SARANDON: Why would we go to a hotel when we have a perfectly good mansion right here?
ELLEN: I mean…hotels are…mints. On the pillows. Andes, those are good.
MAYOR SARANDON: Ellen, (Mayor Sarandon moves closer to Ellen and holds her hands in his) we don’t have to parade around the town square declaring our admiration for each other, but we don’t have to treat this like some sort of affair.
ELLEN: This is an affair though!
MAYOR SARANDON: Yeah, and I’m the funnel cake booth. So let me throw rings on you for money.
ELLEN: You want to do something with you for money?
MAYOR SARANDON: This isn’t an affair in the traditional sense!
ELLEN: Well, it’s definitely not a fair like how you described it.
MAYOR SARANDON: Ellen, I have to read the newspaper. (Mayor Sarandon takes out the Hansbay Quintessential, which has the headline story “SARANDON, DONAHUE TRIALS RESUME WEDNESDAY” and the sub-headline “This woman baked more cookies!” and there is a picture of a woman with a plate full of cookies, even more than before) …gas prices are crazy, right?
MAYOR SARANDON: …I heard there’s a new Quiznos right near here-
ELLEN: Brian, this is boring married people talk!
MAYOR SARANDON: Listen, Gloria- I mean, Ellen-
ELLEN: Wait, who’s Gloria?
MAYOR SARANDON: Who is she?
ELLEN: I’m asking you, you called me Gloria.
MAYOR SARANDON: …It was a joke.
ELLEN: You calling me Gloria’s a joke?
MAYOR SARANDON: I just-(sigh). Gloria…she’s my ex-wife.
ELLEN: Oh. You mean…?
MAYOR SARANDON: Yes, the one that died.
ELLEN: God, I’m…I’m sorry. When did she die?
MAYOR SARANDON: It was January of 2004. She died of complications from anesthesia during surgery.
ELLEN: Jesus…(Ellen puts her arm on Mayor Sarandon’s shoulder) I am so sorry to hear that.
MAYOR SARANDON: Thanks. It’ll be nine years tomorrow.
ELLEN: I see…the same day your case will be decided.
MAYOR SARANDON: That’s correct. I’m sure Gloria Sarandon would be proud of me.
ELLEN: She’s in a better place now.
MAYOR SARANDON: Well, I was in a better place after she died. The bottom of a bottle of Gray Goose. It was better than facing the day sober without her. I almost resigned, but…I felt like she wouldn’t have wanted me to.
ELLEN: I’m sure you’re right. Hey, is this why you wanted to have a steak dinner with me and talk about the news? Because you miss doing that married people stuff with your wife?
MAYOR SARANDON: First of all, we’re still doing the steak dinner thing. FABBY? (Fabio comes over with a plate of waffles) What? No!
FABIO: (Donkey impression) And in the mornin’, I’m makin’ waffles!
MAYOR SARANDON: Did you disobey me to make that joke?
FABIO: She chuckled!
ELLEN: I did chuckle!
MAYOR SARANDON: Fine, just leave them here.
(Fabio puts the plate of waffles down on the table and Mayor Sarandon and Ellen dig in. Cut to Micah and Sue in an otherwise empty courtroom with Judge Marwick presiding)
MICAH: Your honor, I would request-
JUDGE MARWICK: Right off the bat, neither of you are wearing corsets and you are therefore in violation of the decorum that should be used when making requests of the court.
MICAH: Why would I wear a corset?
JUDGE MARWICK: Fine, a corset and a yarmulke, does that tickle your Jewish fancy, you semitic?
MICAH: Did you just call me a semitic?
(Cut to Micah and Sue sitting outside Judge Marwick’s courtroom on a bench)
SUE: Nice lawyering, Micah.
MICAH: Hey, don’t blame me! It’s Marwick and his ridiculous rules. I mean, I’m a renowned lawyer; I invented the butt scratch defense!
SUE: What the hell is that?
MICAH: Some cop killed a black dude, he was put on trial, I said that the black dude was scratching his ass and the cop thought he was going for his gun, you know how those ghetto types are always holding their taints hostage with a magnum.
SUE: Yeah, well when I was prosecutor, I successfully prosecuted a high-profile murder case.
MICAH: Which high-profile murder case?
SUE: Um, I think his name was, Jim something.
MICAH: Ah yes, the Jim Something murders. I remember he used a whatchamacallit to asphyxiate a nurse.
SUE Fuck you, dude.
(Sandra walks over)
SANDRA: Hey, is this where the Donahue trial is taking place?
MICAH: Sorry, it doesn’t reconvene until tomorrow.
SANDRA: Oh that’s okay. I just want to see my ex-boyfriend testify.
SUE: Wait, aren’t you Zimmerman’s ex?
MICAH: Yeah, I remember seeing you when he busted that prostitution ring.
SANDRA: That was my signature roll.
MICAH: I hadn’t realized you guys broke up.
SANDRA: Yeah, Zimmerman was enamored with Kimberly still.
MICAH: Wait, what?
SUE: Zimmerman had a crush on Kimberly?
MICAH: What are we in high school? Did Zimmerman like Kimberly or like like her?
SUE: Okay, that’s more immature.
SANDRA: Like like and crush? For God’s sake, they fucked.
MICAH: What? Really?
SUE: Zimmerman and Kimberly?
SANDRA: They fucked like it was going out of style, which I guess it was, because they only fucked once. Now I guess Zimmerman is hell bent on getting Ethan in the slammer because he believes Ethan’s not an adept husband.
MICAH: Well, this is juicy. Tabloids y’all!
SUE: It’s more than that Micah, that could mean Zimmerman was in the Donahue household at one point.
MICAH: Yeah, getting’ the freaky business on with Kimberly.
SUE: Could your lawyer instincts override your male instincts right now?
SUE: Zimmerman could’ve gotten access to some records at the Donahue household.
MICAH: Holy shit.
(Sue and Micah get up and run out. Cut to 77-year old Leonard Donahue and 75-year old Lynn Donahue sitting in their Burlington Apartment. Ethan, Ryan, Madeline and Jacob are seated in their living room)
LEONARD: I remember when the iPhone came out. Lynn and I were waiting outside the Apple store as this anticipatory silence came over the line outside. Then, they let us in and we rushed in like wildflowers.
ETHAN: Dad, could you share a wistful memory that’s a little less…recent?
LEONARD: This was nearly six years ago Ethan, that’s a century in the world of technology.
ETHAN: I’m sure the kids remember that day better than you do, you were seventy-two.
LEONARD: Let me tell you kids about the day they killed Osama Bin Laden.
ETHAN: Dad, just tell them about your time in prison.
LEONARD: Oh, I don’t know, Ethan.
ETHAN: If you don’t feel comfortable talking about it, then that’s fi-
LEONARD: Oh, okay! I was put into Marble Valley Regional Correctional Facility. Boy, was it awful. We had to turn over all of our possessions and trade them for a prison jump suit. The worst part is, when I got out of prison, one of the comically dopey prison security guards had eaten the only possession I left with them.
LEONARD: Indeed. I think his name was Faulkner.
ETHAN: That can’t be the worst part.
LEONARD: I don’t know, it was pretty scary. Thank God there isn’t a lot of Negros in Vermont.
ETHAN: Dad, you’re not supposed to say things like that.
RYAN: C’mon dad, it’s like watching an antique puppet show!
LEONARD: Is this your son?
ETHAN: Yes, dad.
LEONARD: Why is a hairy spider wrapped around his head?
ETHAN: Dad, that’s his hair. He just grows it out and straightens it.
RYAN: Yeah, didn’t you have subcultures when you were growing up in the 40s and 50s?
LEONARD: No, we didn’t have subcultures. We had megacultures. If you were a teen, you wore a collared shirt and khakis. If you were an adult, you wore a gray flannel suit or you got the fuck out of the way.
RYAN: Didn’t you guys have greasers?
LEONARD: They were a bunch of homos.
ETHAN: And that brings us to Ryan.
JACOB: As much as I enjoy shitting on Ryan, let’s focus on Leonard’s jail time.
LEONARD: Ah, yes. So I joined a group of other ad executives who went to jail for perjury, mail fraud, embezzlement and of course, murder.
MADELINE: Why “of course”?
LEONARD: I don’t know, but obviously I felt uncomfortable around that crowd. So I found a hobby in prison. Widdling. I widdled wood into my favorite ad icons, like the Pillsbury Doughboy and…
LEONARD: That was it, because the first time I widdled they took what I had made and tried to sodomize me with it.
LYNN: Dear God!
MADELINE: Jesus Christ.
ETHAN: Okay, story time’s over.
LEONARD: Ethan, I’m just trying to warn you of what’s in there! You need to beat this! I’ve always knew that between you, Paul and Allison, you would be the most successful! But you can’t go to jail or else the most successful of my kids will be a woman! You need to save the family line, Ethan!
ETHAN: Dad, I’m going to, I just…I’m scared is all.
LEONARD: Ethan, remember what I told you back in ’75?
ETHAN: No I don’t.
LEONARD: Yes you do! (Leonard turns his chair and looks Ethan directly in the eyes, but Ethan averts his gaze) Ethan, you do, Goddamnit!
ETHAN: FINE! You said “when the going gets rough, pussies always fail”.
LEONARD: And it’s just as true today as it was when Mahatma Gandhi uttered it in 1949!
RYAN: Wait a minute, dad, out of the three of us, who do you think is going to be the most successful?
LEONARD: Ryan, sonny boy, don’t make a father make that kind of a decision.
RYAN: You just did!
LEONARD: Yeah, well Paul and Allison aren’t around. Well, Allison isn’t.
(Paul, who is 53, walks in wearing a green sweater, sweat pants and holding a plate of Totino’s pizza rolls)
PAUL: What’s going on?
LEONARD: Nothing, Paul.
PAUL: Cool. Hey, Ethan’s kids.
RYAN: Hey Uncle Paul.
JACOB: Hey Uncle Paul.
MADELINE: Hey Uncle Paul.
PAUL: I used to beat up Ethan when he was ten and I was sixteen.
ETHAN: Yeah and you’ve been coasting on that for what, thirty-eight years?
PAUL: Have fun in prison, asshole.
(Paul walks into the other room)
LYNN: When Leonard was in prison, I would write him love letters and sneak them in using a cake.
ETHAN: I told you guys!
LEONARD: She would write them on the cake, though.
LYNN: I would write romantic things like “Happy 36th Birthday” or “I Love You” or “There’s 500 dollars in here, buy a guard”.
MADELINE: Did they not notice that?
LEONARD: They thought it said “Buy Right Guard”.
JACOB: Yeah, who doesn’t tell people in jail to buy deodorant?
LEONARD: The point is, you have to avoid prison at all costs, otherwise, it’ll be such an extreme waste of talent. It’d be like casting Hugh Jackman as cashier number two in Shark Night 3D.
ETHAN: …You’re right. I can’t mess this up. What was the worst thing that happened to you in jail?
LEONARD: I got beat up by white supremacists. Since there’s so few Negros and Jews in Vermont, they eventually just got bored and beat up anyone with a big nose.
ETHAN: Good thing my nose isn’t big.
LEONARD: You look Puerto Rican from a distance.
(Cut to Mayor Sarandon and Ellen standing in a graveyard during the day. It is raining and they have an umbrella open. Mayor Sarandon is holding a single rose. Cut to a view of the front of the grave. It reads “GLORIA BLACKBURN-SARANDON, 1966-2004”. Cut back to Mayor Sarandon and Ellen looking at the grave. Mayor Sarandon breaks down in tears and kneels down to the grave, letting himself get drenched. Ellen looks concerned. A man in a khaki suit walks over)
KHAKI SUIT: The 2004s are great, but the 2013 graves, my, are they carved and polished.
ELLEN: Go away.
KHAKI SUIT: Message received.
ELLEN: It was a pretty blatant message, yeah. (The Khaki suited man walks away. Cut to Mayor Sarandon driving Ellen back) Um, so…I don’t feel that well. Can you drop me off like a block from my house?
MAYOR SARANDON: What about your car?
ELLEN: I took a cab so Evan wouldn’t suspect anything.
MAYOR SARANDON: He wouldn’t notice you’re gone?
ELLEN: I put a CD of kitchen sounds in the kitchen so he would think I was in there. (Cut to Evan sitting in the living room watching TV. He looks confused, because there are numerous jungle noises coming from the kitchen) Shit, I think it was a two-part CD.
MAYOR SARANDON: I’ll drop you off here.
(Mayor Sarandon stops the car on the side of the road. Ellen opens the door and takes out her umbrella. She then jumps out of the car)
ELLEN: Bye, Brian.
MAYOR SARANDON: Bye, Ellen.
(Ellen closes the door and walks down the street. Mayor Sarandon looks at her, conflicted. He then starts the car back up again and starts driving. Cut to Micah, Sue and Kimberly in the Donahue’s kitchen)
MICAH: It’s a simple question, Kimberly. Did you and Detective Zimmerman have illicit relations at one point?
KIMBERLY: Define “sexual”.
MICAH: I didn’t say sexual.
KIMBERLY: Define “yes”.
SUE: So you did?
KIMBERLY: Yes, and I’m fucking ashamed of it. Ethan has known for five months, we were apart for a while, but we got back together. Why does it matter?
MICAH: Was Zimmerman ever in this house?
KIMBERLY: Uh…yes. On three occasions. Only one of them was sexual, though.
SUE: When’s the last time he was here, Mrs. Donahue?
KIMBERLY: August 2012, when Ethan was in Tampa for the RNC.
MICAH: Who was on top?
SUE: Micah, no, did Mr. Zimmerman ever leave your sight while he was here?
KIMBERLY: …I don’t think so. I invited him in, he showed me a video of Ethan with a prostitute-
MICAH: Wow, you guys watched a porno and by chance discovered Ethan was a porn actor?
KIMBERLY: No, it wasn’t that! It was just security camera footage of Ethan, his friends and some whore going into a hotel room.
SUE: I think that’s worse.
KIMBERLY: Yeah, anyway, in a moment of weakness, we had sex in my bedroom. That’s the story.
SUE: Did you fall asleep afterwards at all?
KIMBERLY: No, he fell asleep so I went to get a pack of cigarettes I hadn’t smoked since the 70s. But when I got back, he was still asleep! Then once he woke up I told him to STFU.
MICAH: You told him to shut the fuck up?
KIMBERLY: I told him to shut the fuck OUT! As in, I told him to leave.
SUE: I see.Well, mind if we take a look around just to make sure he didn’t steal anything?
KIMBERLY: Be my guest.
MICAH: Don’t make us get a warrant.
KIMBERLY: I said you could look around.
MICAH: Good on ya! (Micah and Sue walk into Kimberly’s bedroom. Micah looks under the bed and sees a lot of guns) Wow, lotta guns.
(Kimberly walks in)
KIMBERLY: Ethan’s preparing for Obama’s gun control announcement tomorrow.
(Micah gets up)
MICAH: You know, your emo son could pretty easily access those.
KIMBERLY: Ryan would never do anything crazy.
MICAH: Didn’t Ryan once burn down a fence?
KIMBERLY: Yeah…he did.
SUE: (Offscreen) Eureka!
(Micah and Kimberly go into the bathroom where Sue is. Sue is on her knees looking into a cabinet)
(Sue stands up, holding up a DVD copy of the 1983 film “Eureka”)
SUE: I found a copy of the movie Eureka! Gene Hackman, Joe Pesci, Mickey Rourke, how could you go wrong?
KIMBERLY: Maybe we could go wrong by getting distracted by thirty-year old movies!
MICAH: Where did you even find that?
SUE: It was on the DVD rack in the bathroom.
KIMBERLY: Ethan likes to read the movie synopsis and the reviews while on the toilet.
MICAH: That’s weird, just give me the DVD, please. (Sue hands Micah the DVD. Micah goes into the bathroom, kneels down to the rack of DVDs and puts them in there. He then sees a grate behind the rack that is partially open. He moves the rack out of the way. He opens the grate to see a manila folder full of documents. He opens the folder and sees the first part is labeled “JANUARY 2012” and it goes onto February 2012, but then skips to July 2012. Micah gasps and goes into the other room) GUYS!
MICAH: I FOUND ETHAN’S FILES IN A GRATE IN THE BATHROOM, BUT FOUR MONTHS ARE MISSING!
KIMBERLY: Jesus Christ!
SUE: Well mammy, I do believe we just struck gold!
(Cut to Mayor Sarandon opening the door to his house. He comes in, still wearing wet clothes. He closes the door. Mayor Sarandon walks into the kitchen and takes off his coat and throws it on the table. He opens his laptop and sits at his kitchen table. He opens up a word document. He types “Office of The Mayor of Hansbay, Vermont, Brian Leonard Sarandon. January 15, 2013. To Whom It May Concern, I am resigning effective when my guilty verdict is rendered. I-“ he then gets a call on his cell phone and picks up)
MAYOR SARANDON: Hello?
(Cut to Ryan, Madeline and Jacob sitting in Leonard’s living room while the adults argue in the other room)
ETHAN: (Muffled, in the other room) Paul, where the hell does a 53-year old man with no job get the audacity to insult ME in front of my three children?!
PAUL: (Muffled) Oh sorry, I couldn’t hear that over the sound of you being a criminal!
ETHAN: (Muffled) NOT CLEVER!
LEONARD: (Muffled) YOU TWO NEED TO GET AHOLD OF YOURSELVES! Allison would never conduct her self with such a lack of deportment!
PAUL: (Muffled) SHUT UP ABOUT ALLISON!
LYNN: (Muffled) Do you guys want lemonade or something?
ETHAN: (Muffled) Sure.
PAUL: (Muffled) Yeah, I’ll take some.
JACOB: I’ve been pretty into Breaking Bad recently…
RYAN: So has everyone else, Jacob.
MADELINE: Vampire Diaries here.
JACOB: Oh God, why did I ask?
JACOB: Didn’t I just ask you what show you were into?
JACOB: Oh, I guess I just had a mini-nightmare that I did.
RYAN: You were completely awake! But since you ask-
JACOB: I didn’t ask!
RYAN: I’m into a show called “????????????????????” or as it’s called in English, “You just Don’t Get it, Do You?”. It’s about an overconfident space ship captain who constantly tells everybody that they just don’t get it, do they?
JACOB: I have no idea what you’re saying!
(Cut to Ethan, Paul, Leonard and Lynn in the other room)
LEONARD: Why don’t you two hug and make up, just like old times?
PAUL: We never used to do that.
ETHAN: Yeah, he was so jealous of me that when I was one and a half, he used the Newark Riots as an excuse to try to tip over my crib!
LEONARD: He hadn’t attained to the age of reason yet!
ETHAN: He was eight! And now he’s 53 and he’s a drug addict and he lives with his dad!
LEONARD: The age of reason for him is 54.
PAUL: So dad can sleep at night.
ETHAN: At least you’re being honest.
LEONARD: Lynn, are you going to get that lemonade?
LYNN: In a minute!
(Ethan’s phone rings and Ethan answers it)
MICAH: (On the phone) Ethan, we have reason to believe that Zimmerman acquired his evidence through illegal means!
ETHAN: Oh my God, really?!
MICAH: Fuck yeah! Come down here!
ETHAN: I’ll be over soon! (He hangs up) I have to go!
PAUL: Ooh, big important man with his big important business!
ETHAN: YES! As opposed to small unimportant man with his meth lab!
(Paul lunges at Ethan, but Leonard holds him back)
PAUL: YOU FUCKING CUNT! YOU FRESH PAIR OF TAINT SOCKS!!
LEONARD: CALM DOWN, PAUL!
LYNN: Who still wants lemonade?
ETHAN: Bye! Love you guys! (Ethan walks out of the room to see Ryan, Jacob and Madeline sitting in the living room) Kids, get your coats. We’re leaving.
MADELINE: Thank Jesus.
(Ryan, Jacob and Madeline grab their coats and walk out the door with Ethan. Cut to Ethan driving in the car with Ryan in the front seat and Madeline and Jacob asleep in the back. It is still raining)
RYAN: So…why’d you insist I sit in the front?
ETHAN: Well…Ryan, I love my brother. I mean, I have to. He’s my brother. That’s an obligation of the Lord. However, he destroyed his life. With drugs. Meth, particularly.
RYAN: I would never take meth!
ETHAN: Wow, really defensive, really early on. Listen, you took E. I know that much. I look at you, with some of the progress you’ve made in KDGM and with your band, I don’t necessarily approve of all of it, but I’ve seen people make a ton of money from that demonic shit. The point is, you have a lot of potential. I don’t want you to destroy it with drugs, like Paul did. But then I look at my life…and I think, yeah, I made money. Yeah, I have a job. But what…good…have I done? It’s um…it dogs me. So as much as I don’t want you to be like Paul…I don’t want you to be like me either.
RYAN: Then who do I have to look up to?
ETHAN: Um…Lance Armstrong?
RYAN: That’s true. (Ryan gets a notification on his phone. He looks at his phone) Ah, Goddamnit!
(Cut to Ethan, Micah, Kimberly and Sue in the Donahue office)
MICAH: So here’s how we think it all went down. And viewer discretion is advised, we think he did this after he had sex with your wife.
ETHAN: Oh God.
KIMBERLY: I’m so sorry, Ethan.
(Ethan and Kimberly hold hands)
MICAH: So basically, Kimberly left the room after Zimmerman fell asleep. Zimmerman then woke up and went to the bathroom. That’s when he saw the grate. He busted it open, quickly grabbed all the evidence he needed and then quickly leapt back into bed to pretend to be asleep when Kimberly came back. We believe he hid the evidence in his coat and took it with him once Kimberly told him to ROFL.
KIMBERLY: What does that stand for?
ETHAN: He ran off fucking away with my wife.
KIMBERLY: Ethan. Listen, we deeply appreciate this.
ETHAN: Absolutely, we’re willing to pay extra for this.
SUE: Oh, don’t sweat it-
MICAH: Sue, they just offered us more money!
SUE: You don’t even try to defy your stereotype, do you?
MICAH: How much are we talking?
ETHAN: I need to call Mayor Sarandon.
(Ethan takes out his phone. Cut to Mayor Sarandon at his laptop on the phone)
MAYOR SARANDON: ARE YOU FOR REAL?! AWESOME! (Mayor Sarandon closes his laptop really hard, breaking part of it) Shit!
(Cut to the following day in Judge Marwick’s court. The defense, the prosecution, the jury, the judge and the gallery are all seated. Judge Marwick bangs the gavel)
JUDGE MARWICK: The court will come to order. I understand the prosecution has a witness?
MARY: Your honor, I call Dina Sarandon to the stands. (Ethan laughs) Laugh all you want, Mr. Donahue. You ass gon’ get busted!
JUDGE MARWICK: Order, please.
(Cut to Dina Sarandon, who is a 46-year old, bitter-looking strawberry blonde with an orange blouse, on the stands with Mary questioning her)
MARY: Mrs. Meadows, was your husband an alcoholic when you married him?
DINA: No, Brian was actually quite mindful in his deportment. But then, he became a city councilman in 1993 and all hell broke loose. Power went to his head and booze…went to his mouth.
MARY: That pause was a little much, but anyway, would he often drunkenly flash strangers?
DINA: Not often, but if he was especially drunk, then yes, mailmen, milkmen and our butler Fabio would often be subjected to his inattention to the fact he had no pants on. In fact, I bet he has no pants on right now!
MICAH: OBJECTION! IRRELEVANT!
JUDGE MARWICK: I’m surprised you didn’t object on the grounds that it’s speculation, but alright, sustained.
(Cut to Mayor Sarandon at his trial zipping his pants up. Then cut back to Mary and Dina)
MARY: I have no further questions, your honor. But this demonstrates Mayor Sarandon’s proclivity to flash people and therefore, it would suggest that Ethan would go to the lengths of bribery to protect his precious boss! WE GOT YOU! NOWHERE TO HIDE!
(Judge Marwick bangs the gavel)
JUDGE MARWICK: ORDER! (Mary takes a seat) Mr. Schultz?
MICAH: Your honor, could I ask the prosecution if they’d like to go ahead and call Detective Zimmerman to the stands?
JUDGE MARWICK: They’re right there, aren’t they? Am I like a translator to you people?
MARY: Judge Marwick, could you ask the defense why they are hurrying his testimony?
JUDGE MARWICK: Are you giving them the silent treatment?
MICAH: Tell the prosecution they’re being stupid!
MARY: Your honor!
JUDGE MARWICK: Order! Prosecution, would you like to call Detective Zimmerman up to the stands?
(Cut to Detective Zimmerman on the stands. Mary is questioning him)
MARY: Detective Zimmerman, you called the Hilton hotel in the Cayman Islands and asked for that tape, correct?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Yes I did. For the good of the people.
MARY: Why did you call the Hilton on the Caymans?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: I uh-for the good of the people. Jumped the gun there.
MARY: How did you feel when you saw the footage?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Shocked, schcared, sha-stunned. All of the above, Mary.
MARY: I see. I have no further questions, your honor.
(Mary sits down. Sue rises)
SUE: Your honor, permission to cross-examine?
MICAH: Permission for me too?
JUDGE MARWICK: Only Sue.
(Micah sits down in dejection as Sue strides up to Zimmerman)
SUE: Detective…here’s a question that hasn’t been brought up. Where did you get the evidence of Ethan’s corruption?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: I have friends, you know. Big friends in high places. Plus, my biggest friend in the highest place, God.
SUE: Did you get a copy of the city’s check for 12,000 dollars from God?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Well, of course not. I have connections in less imminent organizations.
SUE: Ah, the obligatory courtroom joke. How’s this for a joke? You say you had connections to get that check? So you’re connected with the Vermont Department of Taxes?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: …Yes.
SUE: I see. So the Commissioner of the Vermont Department of Taxes Mary Peterson would say she knows you?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Well…”knows” is a strong word, I think that word should only be used for the face.
SUE: Okay, that one didn’t go over well.
(Zimmerman becomes increasingly nervous and sweaty)
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Heh.
SUE: Okay, so Mary Peterson doesn’t know you? I mean, she, Ethan and Mayor Sarandon are the only ones who should have access to those kinds of checks. Do you have connections at AT&T where those cell phone records would’ve come from?
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: Can you hear me now?!
SUE: What about the Bank of Hansbay where those expense records would’ve come from?!
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: BANK JOKE!!
SUE: YOU CAN’T JOKE YOUR WAY OUT OF THIS ONE, ZIMMERMAN! EITHER YOU TELL US WHERE YOU GOT THE EVIDENCE OR WE’LL FIND OUT ON OUR OWN!
(Mary stands up)
MARY: YOUR HONOR!
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: FINE! I STOLE THEM! I STOLE THEM FROM KIMBERLY’S HOUSE AFTER I DID THE OLD “IN AND OUT” WITH HER!
(Zimmerman puts his heads in his arms)
JUDGE MARWICK: ORDER!
MICAH: Your honor, the illegal obtainment of vital evidence is completely out of line!
JUDGE MARWICK: I have cause to call a mistrial, Mrs. Morrissey.
MARY: Your honor, we have other vital evidence that was legally obtained!
JUDGE MARWICK: It matters not, Mrs. Morrissey, the jury has already been influenced by illegally obtained evidence. I hereby dismiss exhibits B, C and D as fruit of the poisonous tree and pursuant
to that, I have declared this a mistrial. Case dismissed!
(He bangs the gavel. The defense cheer with joy as the gallery and jury gasp and the prosecution looks dispirited. Cut to David Merkely at Mayor Sarandon’s trial)
DAVID: Your honor, the companion case of State of Vermont V. Ethan Donahue has been dismissed due to the poisonous tree evidence, and I hereby move that this case meet the same fate, considering we have similar evidence.
JUDGE MCGLYNN: I agree. This case is hereby dismissed.
(He bangs the gavel. Cut to Patrick White at the news desk)
PATRICK WHITE: The United States has announced it will speed up troop withdrawal from Afghanistan and that all American soldiers patrolling Afghanistan will be out by 2014, where they can then come here and patrol out streets as homeless people. (He holds his ear piece) Hold on. I’m being told the court proceedings for Ethan Donahue and Mayor Sarandon have suddenly ended, let’s go to Matthew Chambliss to see what they ruled.
(The screen splits with Patrick White on one side and Matthew Chambliss outside the Hansbay courthouse on the other)
MATTHEW CHAMBLISS: Okay, I’m waiting for the interpretive dancers to tell me the verdict. (An interpretive dancer comes out and starts dancing) …yeah, I have no idea what that means.
(Zimmerman walks out of court behind Matthew, but court cops come up to him and put him in handcuffs)
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: WHAT ARE YOU DOING?
COURT COP: You’re under arrest for lying under oath!
DETECTIVE ZIMMERMAN: OATHS DON’T MEAN ANYTHING! ASK THE PRESIDENT! Ooh, that was a good one.
(A court cop hits Zimmerman)
COURT COP: SHUT IT!
(Cut to Ethan, Kimberly, Rob, Ryan, Jacob, Madeline, Micah, Sue and Mayor Sarandon at dinner in the Sarandon household. They are all dressed nice except for Ryan, who still just has a an enclosed hoodie. Mayor Sarandon stands up with a glass of champagne in hand)
MAYOR SARANDON: To injustice!
(They all raise their glasses)
ALL: HERE HERE!
(Cut to Mayor Sarandon drunkenly stumbling into his bedroom. He falls on the bed. Fabio comes in)
MAYOR SARANDON: Go away, Fabio!
FABIO: Yes sir.
(Fabio closes the door. Mayor Sarandon looks at his bedside table to see a picture of his dead wife. He then starts crying. Cut to Ellen walking into her living room to see Evan on the couch. The jungle noises are still playing in the background)
EVAN: Hey, what’s with the jungle noises in the kitchen?
(Ellen ignores his question and just sits very close to him and wraps her arms around him, and he embraces her. Cut to March 19, 2012. A 46-year old Ethan is sitting at his desk outside Mayor Sarandon’s office. He is on his computer, looking at an online article from the 1971 version of the Hansbay Quintessential reading “AD EXEC LEONARD DONAHUE ARRESTED FOR THEFT”)
ETHAN: God, I hope I never end up like that.
(Ethan receives an intercom message)
MAYOR SARANDON INTERCOM: Ethan, come into my office, please.
ETHAN: Yes sir. (Ethan stands up and opens his door, and then walks down the hallway to open Mayor Sarandon’s door. Mayor Sarandon is turned in his chair towards paintings on the wall behind him. He spins around in his chair upon noticing Ethan’s presence.) What would you like, sir?
MAYOR SARANDON: I would like to talk to you, close the door.
(Ethan closes the door and we cut to black)
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Short Story / Mystery and Crime
Short Story / Mystery and Crime
Short Story / Mystery and Crime
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