6 x 06 - Alone
Start from blackness. Music begins, something poignant, acoustic and quietly sung. I’d love to use Angie Hart –Blue, but unfortunately that was used on ‘Conversations With Dead People’. Something like that though, preferably utilising the word ‘alone’ as often. We fade to (all mute):
Scene: A motel room. LORNE is sitting at in a chair with a drink in his hand. Scattered around the chair are dead bottles from the minibar. Quite a few of them. We arc around him slowly and watch as he takes a sip from his drink.
Scene: The Hyperion, ANGEL’s room. The camera moves in an arc around ANGEL, sitting in the leather chair, brooding heavily. A drawing pad is sitting next to him, containing half-finished sketches of FRED, all of them smudged and blurred.
Scene: An alleyway. CONNOR is crouched on top of a girder above it, watching a gang of vamps attacking a girl. He swings down and launches into them, fighting like he’s out of his mind.
Scene: WESLEY’s apartment. WESLEY is sitting on a settee in a darkened room, still looking utterly broken. We see him from the back and he’s holding something in his hands.
Scene: Another bar. SPIKE is moping, nursing a whiskey and looking around disinterestedly.
Scene: The alleyway. CONNOR stakes a vampire, throws another one out of the way and pushes the girl to one side. He launches himself at another vamp, stake raised up high. Then the vampire dusts before he can strike, revealing ALEX standing behind it. CONNOR’s swing brings the stake down and he stops it just millimetres from her heart. Both of them stare at each other in surprise.
Scene: WESLEY’s apartment. The music fades and is replaced by WESLEY’s rasping breathing. We’re still staying behind him and just stay with him, very quiet apart from nervous breathing. The camera moves around very slowly around to the front. Then we hear a click-click.
The camera keeps moving and we can see WESLEY holding a pistol on the flat of his hands. He stares at it for a moment. Then we move to:
Scene: The alleyway. CONNOR and ALEX are still in the same positions as they were before. Then ALEX pushes him away.
ALEX: What the hell do you think you’re doing?
CONNOR just scowls at her.
ALEX: I’m serious man, this is no place for amateurs.
She tries to push past him, but CONNOR bodychecks her into a wall. ALEX stumbles, unprepared and then bounces back to shove him away.
ALEX: What is wrong with you? Are you looking to get beaten down?
CONNOR’s still stony.
ALEX: What? You wanna throw down over some dead vampire?
CONNOR: She wasn’t just some vampire.
ALEX: Right, right, she was your sis, yeah. Except she had a small problem with death.
CONNOR: I could’ve made it right if it wasn’t for you.
ALEX: What were you gonna do? Make her mend her ways and promise never to be naughty again? Never gonna work bro. Once they take that drink, they’re gone forever.
CONNOR (cold): I could’ve brought her back to how she was if you hadn’t…
ALEX (hectoring): If I hadn’t done my job?
CONNOR (shouting): Murdered her! <beat> I could’ve saved her.
ALEX: Well, you didn’t. Instead I saved you from getting caught in her teeth, which now I’m thinking wasn’t a great move, since all you seem to do is bitch.
She tries to push past him again, but CONNOR grabs her arm and shoves her back into a dumpster. ALEX gets up, looking very, very annoyed. She advances on CONNOR, who swings again. ALEX dodges, using CONNOR’s weight to send him stumbling into a pile of rubbish bags. CONNOR falls heavily. ALEX looks at him for a second, fists bunched, before dropping her guard.
ALEX: I saved your life.
CONNOR: You destroyed it.
ALEX: I’m a Slayer all right? That means I don’t get to dance about trying to redeem the dead. A thing is what it is. You can play make-believe all you want, but I’ve got to live in the real world. And here, if I hesitate, people die.
She turns to walk off. CONNOR struggles out of the rubbish pile and shouts after her.
CONNOR: Yeah, you’re a real hero.
ALEX turns to look at him.
ALEX: Who said I wanted to be a hero?
She turns and walks away.
ALEX: I just want to be left alone.
CONNOR picks himself out of the rubbish pile and scowls at her retreating back. His knuckles turn white around the stake and he looks murderous. Then he whirls, storming away in the opposite direction, launching a small tantrum at the dumpster as he passes, denting it severely.
Scene: WESLEY’s apartment. WESLEY is still sitting in the same position we left him in, holding the revolver in the flat of his palms. He hefts it and then wraps his fingers slowly and very deliberately around the stock. There’s a pause and the only noise we can hear is WESLEY’s breathing.
Then there’s a crash as someone comes flying through WESLEY’s window. WESLEY turns and fires instinctively, but the figure has moved and the bullet thuds into the wall. The figure flies towards WESLEY and knocks the gun up in the air, sending the next shot wild into the ceiling. It twists the gun in WESLEY’s hands, forcing it to point up to the ceiling. WESLEY tries to punch, but the figure blocks, leaving WESLEY open to attack. Then it moves forward into the light. It’s ANGEL.
ANGEL: Wes, it’s me.
WESLEY: Angel? <beat> What the hell are you playing at?
ANGEL pulls the gun out of WESLEY’s grasp and releases him.
ANGEL: I could ask you the same question. This <brandishing gun and tossing away> - not the answer.
ANGEL: I know you’re hurting Wes, God knows I felt it when Buffy died but… this isn’t the way. You’ll get through this. And I’m here to help you. Every step of the way.
WESLEY looks at him in bewilderment.
WESLEY: What on earth are you talking about?
ANGEL (confused): The gun… I thought… You weren’t going to…?
WESLEY chuckles, not quite the right side of sanity. A little hysterical. He stands and flexes the wrist ANGEL grabbed.
ANGEL: But the gun… it was loaded.
WESLEY: Strangely enough, I keep it loaded in case something should come crashing through my front windows. <thoughtfully absent, examining the bullet hole in the wall> I suppose I shall have to practise my aim.
ANGEL: So you weren’t…? <beat> Well, that’s a relief.
WESLEY: It’s nice to know that you have so much faith in my coping skills.
ANGEL: Wes, I know how hard this must be for you.
WESLEY (absent, still looking at bullet-hole): Yes, I imagine you would.
ANGEL looks slightly thrown by WESLEY’s complete absence of emotion. He puts a hand on WESLEY’s shoulder.
ANGEL: You don’t have to do this alone.
WESLEY turns and walks back to the settee, allowing ANGEL’s hand to drop.
WESLEY: I know.
He sits down on the settee and picks up a book. ANGEL stares at him for a minute. WESLEY looks up and seems surprised to see ANGEL still standing there.
WESLEY: Was there anything else?
ANGEL: We worry about you Wes.
WESLEY: I noticed. The next time, can you worry a little less and use the door rather than the window?
ANGEL still stands and looks at him and WESLEY waits patiently, before closing his book and folding his hands on top of it.
WESLEY: Angel. I’m grateful for your concern, but I’m okay.
ANGEL gives him a sceptical look.
WESLEY (stoic): I’ve lost Fred once before. I know that… she would want me to go on. Fight the good fight.
ANGEL: Is that enough?
WESLEY (looks at him): I suppose it will have to be.
Scene: LORNE’s motel room. LORNE is asleep in the chair, head crooked at a an odd angle, with his fingers half-curled around an empty bottle on the tabletop. Ominous music. Focus on him for a minute, curling around him. He stirs in his sleep.
We hear a faint voiceover as LORNE twitches.
LINDSAY (V/O): You don’t think a man can change?
LORNE (V/O): It’s not about what I think.
LORNE twitches again, the bottle falling from his fingers with a clink. It rolls across the table-top. LORNE twitches again, making an asleep-grunt, almost a ‘No’.
LINDSAY (V/O): I could sing for you.
LORNE (V/O): I’ve heard you sing.
Sudden flash – a picture of LORNE shooting LINDSAY, timed so it appears twice, once with each gunshot. LORNE jerks in his sleep with each shot. The bottle rolls off the table and smashes on the floor and LORNE bolts upright in the chair.
He squeezes his eyes shut and rubs them with the balls of his hands. He looks absolutely terrible, hair mussed, bags under his eyes. He runs his hands through his hair and looks down at either side of his chair. We follow his gaze to see bottles, a few of them, all empty. LORNE picks one up and shakes it to make sure it’s empty. Then he grabs a coat and goes outside.
Scene: Streets of LA, night time. LORNE is walking along in a new Homburg and trenchcoat, head down, hands in the pockets of his coat, trying not to make eye contact with anyone. There’s very few people around and only a couple of cars on the streets. LORNE walks around a burned out car, still smouldering slightly, that’s parked slanted halfway across the road and pavement.
He stops still and looks down at something by his feet with a mild look of distaste, as though he’s just avoided stepping in a muddy puddle or something. We pan down to see he’s looking at a puddle of blood and a despairing smudged handprint, as though someone was dragged away here. He sighs and sidesteps it, skirting around the blood like it is just a puddle. He doesn’t care who was here anymore; he just wants to avoid soiling his shoes. We focus on his feet as he passes a looted shop, his shoes crunching on the glass on the pavement.
There’s a crossroads ahead and Lorne pauses, waiting for the traffic lights to change so he can cross the road. A car pulls up at the lights – a big heavy truck with a couple of gangster wannabes inside. Rap music is playing and the two gangabes are bouncing their heads and rapping along. LORNE gives them a brief glance, listening to their singing, and then turns away, shuddering, walking quickly across the road and away from the truck.
The lights change and the truck squeals away from the lights, the driver showing off their masculinity with silly driving. LORNE looks up and watches it tear down the street. It gets about 200m down the road before a figure leaps out in front of it. The truck screeches to a halt, slewing across the road as the wheels lock. We watch from a distance as the gangabes open the doors, preparing to start shouting, only to be set upon by a gang of vampires, who drag them out and start feasting.
LORNE watches from his distant position, looking completely unmoved and uncaring. He shudders once and turns away, stepping into a dark bar.
Scene: A demon bar. SPIKE is at the bar, nursing a whiskey It’s a dark, dingy place, full of the scum of demonica, as these places are wont to be. SPIKE is holding a piece of paper in his fingers and he turns it over and over. He unfolds it and we can see that it’s got “Young blonde, St Vigeus’s Arms, 9.30pm” written on it.
SPIKE casts a glance towards the clock behind the bar, which reads 9.29pm, knocks back his drink and looks around the bar. Right on cue, there’s a kerfuffle in a corner and a muffled squeal. It’s a young blonde girl, being dragged into a backroom by a VAMP in vampface.
The barman comes over to fill SPIKE’s glass and SPIKE slaps some money down on the bar, getting up from his stool, still looking to where the VAMP and girl have gone.
SPIKE: Double, mate. I’ll be back in a minute.
The barman takes his money and gives a nervous look as SPIKE strides towards the back.
Scene: The backroom of the bar. SPIKE pushes his way through a bead curtain or somesuch into a short corridor that opens into a room.. It’s darker than the bar and SPIKE looks around, trying to make sense of the gloom.
There’s a movement in the gloom and a little smothered shriek. We can see SPIKE move in the darkness, turning towards the wall and suddenly there’s light. A dim, uncovered bulb swings in the middle of the room. The VAMP looks round from his victim, snarling in anger at being interrupted.
SPIKE: Sorry mate, are you a “lights-off” kinda boy?
The VAMP snarls.
VAMP: Get lost.
SPIKE smiles smugly.
VAMP: What are you, some kind of hero? Get lost, or I’ll lose you.
SPIKE: Go on then.
The VAMP throws the girl to the floor and advances menacingly. SPIKE smiles, ducks the punch and punches the VAMP in the throat. The VAMP gags and swings again, but SPIKE catches it and sends a haymaker into his face. The VAMP falls and SPIKE whips out a stake from his belt, ready to administer the coup de grace.
Suddenly the vamp recovers, grabbing SPIKE’s wrist and using it to throw him into the wall. Both of them climb to their feet. SPIKE swings the stake, but the VAMP knocks it out of his hand, spinning to kick him in the inside of his knee in the same movement. SPIKE reels and the VAMP punches him hard three times in the stomach, sending him choking and coughing to the floor. The VAMP looks down on him with disdain and then brings his knee up in one swift, very violent movement.
SPIKE is bruised, battered and bloodied, his face streaming blood and gasping for breath. The VAMP sneers at him.
VAMP: We don’t much truck with heroes in this town.
Then he brings his boot down on SPIKE’s face.
Fade out/Fade in
SPIKE wakes, lifting himself from the floor with painful slowness. He holds his hand to his ribs and cough, obviously in great pain. The VAMP has gone and the room is empty. In the corner, the girl is lying on the floor, facing towards SPIKE. Her eyes are open and there are two bloodied holes in her neck.
SPIKE stares at her for a second. Then he limps away.
Scene: Random dark and dingy bar. LORNE is sitting at the darkest corner of the bar, nursing a drink He’s looking thoroughly morose and a little bit worse for wear.
WESLEY slides into the seat next to him.
WESLEY: Hello Lorne. <to barman> Double thanks.
LORNE (surprised): Wes! What’re you doing here; it’s barely nine o’clock in the morning!
WESLEY: Same as you I’d expect. <to barman as his drink arrives> Thank you.
There’s a beat and LORNE looks at WESLEY curiously.
LORNE (sardonic): Shouldn’t you be out fighting the good fight at this time of day?
WESLEY: Nowadays, I tend to find I need a deadener before the good fight starts.
He drinks and pulls a face at what is obviously some very rough alcohol.
WESLEY (controlled upset): You just can’t look at them all Lorne. Not anymore.
Something occurs and he looks up at LORNE in surprise.
WESLEY: Isn’t that why you’re here?
LORNE: Well, this is the end of my day, not the beginning. <off WESLEY’s look> It’s become not safe for me to wander around during the day.
WESLEY: Ah! <raising his glass as if in toast> The ever-changing face of American racism.
He drains the glass and orders another. LORNE’s giving him a worried look.
LORNE: Are you sure you should be drinking so much, so early?
WESLEY (as if the question didn’t happen): Angel wants to see you.
LORNE (archly): Really?
WESLEY: Oh yes, I’m quite sure of it. He’s very concerned about you…us… everything. <airy waves of his hand punctuating the words>
LORNE reacts with almost the beginning of a smile.
WESLEY (continuing): Oh yes, I’m sure he’ll be needing all of his allies shipshape and Bristol fashion for the fightback.
LORNE’s face drops as he realises that WESLEY didn’t mean that kind of concerned.
LORNE (disappointed): Allies.
WESLEY: Oh yes. I’d imagine Cordelia and Gunn are already at the Hyperion. I should probably be getting along.