Transcript for Episode 4: You Read it

WHAT’S THE FREQUENCY – EPISODE 4: YOU READ IT

INT. THE NOTHINGNESS –

 

CLICK

 

STATIC.

 

A music box opens and plays.

THE VOICE:

I remember… I remember that I can remember… a man. A voice. I remember a voice. Tethered to a man. A man tethered to a voice. A man tethered to a voice. I remember a man. I remember a man. I remember a man. I remember a man. Me a man. I remember what I remember… remember the flesh… remember the flesh… remember the flesh… remember the eyes… remember the eyes… remember the eyes… remember the eyes… the lips… the lips… the lips… the lips…

DISTORTION.

 

FEEDBACK.

 

STATIC.

INT. WALTER OFFICE APT. – DAY

WHITNEY:

(To herself)

Strange broadcast.

THE VOICE

(From the radio)

Remember the kiss… kiss… Remember the…Remember the kiss… Remember the kiss… the caress… the caress… the caress… the caress… Remember the blood… Remember the blood… Remember the blood… Remember the blood… remember the bone.

      WHITNEY

(To herself)

Just some nutcase talking nonsense.

THE VOICE

-remember the bone…

WHITNEY

Someone must be messing with the signal-

Whitney turns off the radio and sits in Walter’s chair at the desk.

Walter barges in from his bedroom drying off his face.

WALTER

There we are! Good as new!

WHITNEY

You’re still walking with a hitch and you have slight wheeze on your exhale and have you been listening to the radio over the last few days?

WALTER

But sergeant I’m field ready. My country NEEDS me!

WHITNEY

Spare me Troubles. I know what I know and hear what I hear. Walter peruses through his liquor bottles. Which brings me back to… every station on the radio is static.

WALTER

It’s broken. Power of deduction!

WHITNEY

The radio in the car. The radio in office. The handheld you keep under your bed.

WALTER

Again… stay out of my personal belongs.

 

KNOCK at the door.

Pause.

 

Another KNOCK.

WHITNEY

I have it!

Whitney sprints to the door Walter pours a drink.

WALTER

Tell them we’re not taking any clients right now! She opens the door.

Lillian is on the other side.

WHITNEY

Lillian.

LILLIAN

Whitney.

WHITNEY

Come. The patient is this way.

WALTER

What’s this Whit? Behind my back?

LILLIAN

What a warm welcome.

WALTER

Is there something wrong with wanting your visits to be more… social and less business.

LILLIAN

If I charged you correctly it would be business. This will count as social for now.

Walter SIPS his drink.

 

LILLIAN (CONT’D)

And I will take that please.

He hands it over.

WALTER

Two mother hens. What every boy needs.

WHITNEY

I’m a bit worried. Because he’s wheezy when he exhales and he still has a hitch in walk.

LILLIAN

Okay. Let’s take a look.

(Pause)

Whitney you may want to recuse yourself. Unless something has changed and neither of you are guarding your modesty.

WHITNEY

Really Lillian… you can stop… Ew… I’m going now. Excuse me! She exits to the other room.

WALTER

Effective trick.

LILLIAN

Shirt. Off.

WALTER

Why doctor! I believe you have the wrong idea about me.

(Pause)

Shirt! Coming off!

LILLIAN

(Giggle)

You are clown. A clown!

WALTER

A private clown detective to you. Whoa! Are those your fingers?

 

She grabs his sides.

WALTER (CONT’D)

Aargh!!!

 

WHITNEY (O.S.)

GROSS!!!

LILLIAN

What?

WALTER

Icicles would be warmer.

LILLIAN

You had that coming.

 

WHITNEY (O.S.)

I can hear you!!!

WALTER

I still hurt… all over!

LILLIAN

Ssssh.

Lillian shushes Walter.

 

CLICK.

 

STATIC.

 

INT. THE NOTHINGNESS –

STATIC.

 

CLICK.

 

MISSY

So ladies, are we alone? Good. Now that it’s just us girls I can share my secret on looking this good everyday. What is that secret? I use Spishak’s specially formulated Age BeGone Vanishing cream. Like no other vanishing cream on the market, Age BeGone melts the wrinkles from your face. Just apply a thin layer around your entire face being careful to leave some distance from your eyes. Do you feel it tingling? Good. That means it working. In five minutes just wash it away. With Age BeGone women fretting over losing their looks when hitting the big two five will fret no more. The fine men of Spishak’s science department have made sure of that. So ladies give yourself and your husband the gift that keeps giving. Your eternal beauty.

INT. POLICE STATION EVIDENCE LOCKER – DAY

Officer Gans is showing a trainee Officer Miles, 20s, the ins and outs of evidence handling.

GANS

See Miles this might seem like the “wrong end of a stick” assignment for two capable, MORE than capable in fact, officers such as ourselves. That’s right. Look around. We are tasked with maintaining the very artifacts that will make or break a case.

MILES

I hadn’t thought of it like that.

GANS

Of course, no one ever does. No one ever suspects.

MILES

What’s that?

GANS

We’re gods Miles.

MILES

Gee.

GANS

We are gods. Welcome to the club.

KNOCK.

 

Barton pops his head into the room.

BARTON

Hey Gans?

GANS

(To Barton)

What can I do for you Barton?

Pause.

 

Barton takes note of the trainee.

BARTON

(To Miles)

Hey, rook… I think it’s break time.

MILES

Not for another…

(Long pause)

I… will… go take my break!

BARTON

No need to rush.

Miles exits.

 

GANS

He’s new.

BARTON

I hope so.

GANS

How can I help you?

BARTON

How long have we known each other?

GANS

Three years give or take.

BARTON

Right. I’d say we’re pretty close.

GANS

(Pause)

Why not?

BARTON

I need help with an investigation.

GANS

They put you back on the beat?

BARTON

No.

 

GANS

Oh.

 

BARTON

It’s dangerous.

GANS

Dangerous?

BARTON

Treacherous even!

GANS

What are you getting at?

BARTON

I came into possession of a ledger that has documented proof of bribes to city officials and the police force.

GANS

Why are you telling me this?

BARTON

I trust you.

GANS

Gosh, thanks.

BARTON

Call it a detective’s instinct.

GANS

But you’re not a detective.

BARTON

Soon. We crack open this walnut of corruption they’ll give us a key to the city.

GANS

So… wait. Was this what Troubles was helping you with?

 

BARTON

Yes.

GANS

Why not just leave it for him?

BARTON

Some things you just have to do yourself.

GANS

But this type of stuff is what he does. We’re-

BARTON

We’re cops Gans! Sworn to serve and protect. This isn’t Troubles problem! This is my problem!

(Beat)

Our problem.

Pause.

 

GANS

You seem a little… wound up.

BARTON

I’m fine. Sorry for snapping.

GANS

We both know that we have some cops around here who are less than honest. Crossing the blue line and betraying other cops… could be suicide.

BARTON

We’re not the ones who should be fearful.

GANS

Can I think about it?

BARTON

What is there to think about?

(Pause)

Say yes. I need someone I can trust.

GANS

I don’t know Barton. I’m flattered.

BARTON

My dad was murdered because of a dirty cop. Some dirty low life coward hiding behind a badge pretending to be a protector of the people beat him to death. All because he wouldn’t cough up a monthly protection fee.

GANS

I didn’t know.

BARTON

No one does. Cops never looked into it. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out why. We live in Chinatown. Who cares what happens there?

(Beat)

I do. I care Gans.

GANS

So this cop… is he still on the-

Silence.

BARTON

Dead. Killed off duty by a mugger… a mugger who conveniently died in cell after they picked him up.

 

GANS

I’ll do it!

BARTON

Great!

GANS

No secrets though. We need to promise never to lie to each other.

BARTON

Partners don’t lie.

INT. ELLS HOME STUDY – NIGHT

Carmen sits at Joseph’s desk as TRUDY, late 30s, places a small toolbox a top it.

TRUDY

So… you want me to break open Joseph’s desk drawer?

CARMEN

No Trudy, don’t break it.

TRUDY

Don’t break it.

(Pause)

What am I supposed to do again?

CARMEN

Can’t you pick it?

TRUDY

Pick it?

CARMEN

Like the movies. Pick it.

TRUDY

No. Why don’t you just ask Joe to open it?

CARMEN

I can’t.

Pause.

TRUDY

I shouldn’t get involved.

CARMEN

Please?

TRUDY

Carmen, you and Joseph have been really kind to me over the years. When Steven didn’t come back from… I’m handy. Leaks, hanging stuff, changing the oil…

CARMEN

Please?

TRUDY

No. I don’t know how to a pick lock.

CARMEN

It can’t be that hard.

TRUDY

Then you do it.

CARMEN

Damn it!

TRUDY

What is it? What’s going on?

 

CARMEN

He’s missing. I don’t know how to find him.

TRUDY

Oh… I’m sorry.

Trudy opens her toolbox and removes a flathead screwdriver. She wedges it between the drawer and desk.

CRACK.

 

The drawer flies open.

TRUDY

Sorry I broke your drawer… Joe’s drawer. I can fix it.

CARMEN

Thank you dear.

(Beat)

What’s inside? What do you see?

TRUDY

It’s a card.

CARMEN

Wha… what does it say?

Trudy removes the card.

TRUDY

(Reading)

I don’t understand.

(Beat)

You read it.

CARMEN

Fine. Let me look. It says-

(Reading)

I don’t understand.

(Pause)

You… read it.

(Pause)

I really don’t understand.

TRUDY

What just happened?

CARMEN

Would you like a drink?

INT. THE NOTHINGNESS –

 

CLICK.

STATIC.

 

Donald enters the front door.

DONALD

Honey, I’m home!

He closes the front door.

 

Donald enters the front door.

DONALD (CONT’D)

Honey, I’m home!

Louise is sitting at the couch reading.

LOUISE

(Distracted)

Welcome… home.

He closes the front door.

 

Donald enters the front door.

DONALD

Honey, I’m home!

He closes the front door.

 

Donald enters the front door.

DONALD (CONT’D)

Honey, I’m home!

 

He closes the front door.

LOUISE

(Distracted)

How was brunch?

DONALD

My brothers dead.

LOUISE

Darn.

(Beat)

Come sit.

DONALD

What is that?

LOUISE

This? It’s a book.

DONALD

Where did it come from?

LOUISE

The bookshelf.

DONALD

What does it do?

LOUISE

Don’t know yet.

DONALD

Would it be okay if I got a book from the shelf for myself?

LOUISE

Hmm. Better not. How about we just share this one?

DONALD

I don’t see as to why I should. There are an infinite number of books on our shelf.

LOUISE

Really? Infinite?

DONALD

Fine. Infinite plus the one you are holding.

LOUISE

Are you not capable of sharing?

DONALD

Of course I am!

LOUISE

Sit. Scoot closer you stick in the mud. He scoots closer.

DONALD

I don’t understand. Where are the words?

LOUISE

There aren’t any.

DONALD

Turn the page again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

(Pause)

Again.

LOUISE

Each page is the different but the same.

DONALD

It’s the sky.

LOUISE

Yes.

 

DONALD

Inside a book.

 

LOUISE

Yes.

 

DONALD

But it should be out there.

LOUISE

Out where?

DONALD

Up above.

LOUISE

The sky? Is…

DONALD

Outside these walls. Beyond that door.

 

LOUISE

Oh, look! There’s a door!

DONALD

Our front door.

LOUISE

And we can leave?

DONALD

Sure.

 

Donald gets up and walks to the door and tries to open it. It’s locked.

DONALD (CONT’D)

That’s… strange…

He jiggles the handle around.

DONALD (CONT’D)

How is this locked?

LOUISE

Are you using it right?

DONALD

Of course! Of course! Of course.

LOUISE

Then open it.

DONALD

I’m trying.

LOUISE

Open the door.

DONALD

I know how. I know how.

LOUISE

Open the door.

DONALD

I know how… right?

LOUISE

Open the door Donald!!!

DONALD

But I knew how!

LOUISE

OPEN THE DOOR!!!

STATIC.

 

CLICK.

DONALD

It won’t open!!!

LOUISE

OPEN IT OPEN IT OPEN IT!!!!

DONALD

IT WON”T OPEN! IT WON’T OOOOPPPEEEENNNN!!!!

LOUISE

OOOOOOPPPPPPEEEENNNNNNN!!!!!

EXT. BACK ALLEY EXIT OF YEE’S GRAND MARKET – DAY

 

Lillian steps out to the street from the market’s back door.

LILLIAN

I’m glad that the cream has done this well this quickly for your foot Mr. Yee. Thank you these tangerines they look delicious. Thank you.

Door SHUTS.

RIP, early 30s, KNOCKS into Lillian knocking the tangerines out of her hands.

The tangerines scatter across the alley.

LILLIAN (CONT’D)

Dang it!

RIP

Oh! Sorry! Are you okay miss?

LILLIAN

What is wrong with you?!?

RIP

Here, here, here… Let me help. Okay? I’m sorry

LILLIAN

Do you always walk down allies not watching where you’re going? I’m the only other living thing in the alley and you just happen to flatten me out?

RIP

Are you always this damn difficult to apologize to?

LILLIAN

Yeah.

RIP

Yeah?

(Pause)

Alright here is the last one.

LILLIAN

Yeah.

(She smiles)

Thanks for helping me pick these up.

RIP

Hey it was no bother to help you. The least I could do. Right?

LILLIAN

The least you could do is watch where you’re going next time.

RIP

Back to this?

LILLIAN

(Laughing)

Okay. I’m a jerk. Sorry.

RIP

My name is Rip.

LILLIAN

Lillian. Nice to meet you.

RIP

Say… where are you headed?

LILLIAN

Five blocks up from here.

RIP

Can I walk you? Not the safest of neighborhoods.

LILLIAN

Right. People could just run right into you at any moment. They begin walking.

RIP

Yeah… I guess you’re right.

(Beat)

So… yeah… you live around here?

LILLIAN

Like I said five blocks away.

RIP

Right… silly me. What’s it like living above a repair shop?

LILLIAN

I share the apartment with my brother… so it’s awful.

RIP

Is he there… uh… now?

 

LILLIAN

Maybe.

 

Silence.

LILLIAN (CONT’D)

Do we know each other?

RIP

I think I would remember a pretty woman like you.

LILLIAN

How did you know I lived above a repair shop?

RIP

Everybody lives somewhere… repair shop… market… police station.

LILLIAN

Thanks for walking me this far. Awfully nice of you.

RIP

I can see you the rest of the way. It’s perfectly fine.

LILLIAN

You must be needing to go off… to where ever it is that you were walking to in a random alley.

RIP

Couldn’t let you go now. Besides we’re almost there right?

Silence.

 

Rip CHUCKLES to himself.

RIP (CONT’D)

You know, I didn’t mean to insult you.

 

LILLIAN

What insult? You are fine.

They both stop walking.

Silence.

RIP

Now you insult me Ms. Wu.

 

LILLIAN

I don’t know what you want or what you think I have-

 

RIP

Your brother is Barton Wu correct? You may want to tell him he shouldn’t take things that aren’t his.

LILLIAN

Great… I’ll let him know. Are you done walking-

He pushes her up against the wall.

 

RIP

Hey! Why so rude? Haven’t I been a gentleman to you? Huh?!? Huh?!?

LILLIAN

Yeah. Thanks for your protection. You’ve been the perfect-

 

ELECTRICITY SURGES through him.

RIP

Aargh!

He slumps to concrete.

 

She gives the cattle prod another JOLT.

LILLIAN

I’ll walk myself the rest of the way.

(To herself)

Hm. Something Archie built that actually works the way it’s supposed to.

INT. FINE PUBLISHING’S BULLPEN – DAY

 

Walter and Whitney approach Melanie’s desk. She looks up and sets down her pen.

MELANIE

Oh… you’re back.

WHITNEY

It’s like we never left.

WALTER

Melanie is that you?!?

MELANIE

Uh… yeah?

WALTER

You look absolutely smashing. I thought they went and fired Melanie and put a model in her place.

MELANIE

Awww. Mr. Mix you’re so sweet.

WALTER

For a moment there I was really mad about this. Whatever you did keep doing it!

WHITNEY

So…Is Brick in the bullpen today?

MELANIE

(Beaming)

Yeah. Over there.

WHITNEY

Troubles…

WALTER

Till next time.

WHITNEY

…after you.

Walter and Whitney make their way to Bricks desk.

BRICK HOUSENER, mid 30s, very fit, is sitting at his desk scribbling on a scratch pad.

WHITNEY (CONT’D)

Anything interesting?

BRICK

Excuse me- Oh! Hello pretty lady.

Walter lets out a SNORT.

BRICK (CONT’D)

I’m Brick… Brick Housener. You are?

WHITNEY

Whitney and-

WALTER

(To Brick)

Hi I’m Walter. Pleasure is all yours. Truly.

(To Whitney)

Do you have the time?

BRICK

It’s one pm.

WALTER

Way to stay on top of things Brick!

(To Whitney)

You seem to have this part under control here. I’ll meet you downstairs. I have a phone to make.

WHITNEY

Really? Now?

WALTER

Look. He’s adorable. You’re adorable. You’ll get along great without me.

WHITNEY

That’s just… perfect.

WALTER

Downstairs in front of the building.

 

Walter exits.

BRICK

Is that your dad?

WHITNEY

Sure. He’s a real pill.

MELANIE (O.S.)

Bye Mr. Mix!

BRICK

Dad’s right? Mine rode me pretty hard.

WHITNEY

Right. Did Terry let you know we were coming?

BRICK

No. Terry is a pretty terrible boss.

 

WHITNEY

Troubles and I-

BRICK

Troubles?

 

WHITNEY

Oh… That is a sort of nickname…Mr. Mix and I were hired to find a former missing colleague of yours.

BRICK

Joe?

WHITNEY

Yeah. Have you heard from him?

BRICK

No. Not since he quit.

WHITNEY

Did you guys collaborate often?

BRICK

Care for a Enfield No. 2?

WHITNEY

Yuck.

BRICK

Suit yourself. I suppose they are after all made with a mans tastes in mind.

WHITNEY

I bet they are.

Brick lights the cigarette.

 

INHALES.

 

EXHALES.

 

Whitney COUGHS.

BRICK

Did we collaborate? Yes, sometimes… but I hated it.

WHITNEY

How so?

INHALES.

 

EXHALES.

 

Whitney COUGHS.

BRICK

He was a hack. I felt bad for guy so I’d throw him a bone from time to time.

WHITNEY

Any idea where he may be?

BRICK

What are you doing later?

WHITNEY

Looking for Mr. Ells.

BRICK

I mean after that.

WHITNEY

Thanks for taking the time to talk. If you’ll excuse me.

 

BRICK

Sure. You should talk to Joe’s brother. If anyone knows where he is it’d be him.

WHITNEY

He has a brother?

BRICK

Yeah. He showed up here all time. Always borrowing money from Joe.

WHITNEY

His name?

BRICK

Julian.

WHITNEY

Great. Thanks.

BRICK

Wait. Do you want to leave me your card? Incase I think of anything else?

WHITNEY

Gosh… I gave Melanie our last one. I’m sorry. Just ask her if you think of something.

Whitney walks over to Melanie’s desk.

WHITNEY (CONT’D)

Here’s our card Melanie. Call us if you guys can think of anything else or if Joe turns up.

MELANIE

Miss Whitney may I walk you to the elevator?

WHITNEY

Ok… yeah.

(Beat)

Why not?

Melanie rolls her chair out away from the desk. They walk awkwardly to the-

 

ELEVATOR HALLWAY –

 

Whitney presses the call button.

 

WHITNEY (CONT’D)

What’s on your mind?

MELANIE

Here. I wanted to say something when you were here last. I just… She hands over a stack of letters.

WHITNEY

What are they?

MELANIE

I was supposed to destroy those letters. Terry was worried about liability but I couldn’t… I knew something could happen.

WHITNEY

Slow down.

MELANIE

I have to get back. Could you tell Walter I’m free this Friday?

WHITNEY

No.

MELANIE

Maybe make it seem like it was his idea.

WHITNEY

Okay, I won’t.

Melanie quickly shuffles back to the office.

MELANIE

I didn’t give you those.

EXT. FINE PUBLISHING’S OFFICE BUILDING – DAY

 

Walter picks up the phone receiver.

 

He drops a coin in.

 

The phone RINGS.

WALTER

A bad time to not answer.

Continues to RING.

WALTER (CONT’D)

Damn it.

 

A car pulls up alongside and comes to a stop.

 

A cloth hood goes over Walter’s head.

WALTER (CONT’D)

Hey!

 

Walter gets dragged out of the phone booth.

 

Walter lands a few blind PUNCHES.

 

He is overpowered and shoved into a car trunk.

 

He BANGS away from the inside of the trunk.

 

The cars PEELS away.

 

OUTRO

 

What’s The Frequency? was written and created by James Oliva.

 

Production and sound design by Alexander Danner.

 

What’s The Frequency’s theme music composed by Kurt C Nelson.

 

We’d like to announce we now have an online store for show merchandise on the Big Cartel Which you can visit by going to whatsthefrequency.bigcartel.com.

 

If you really enjoy the show please consider contributing to our Patreon campaign at www.patreon.com/wtfrequency  

 

For the month of January and February we are running a contest. For every person that signs up as a Patreon supporter at the $3 and up will be put in a raffle for a limited edition signed and numbered poster. In addition ANY Patreon support level you sign up for in those months will earn you free shipping on any order from our store.

 

We’d like to give special thanks to Jen and Chris Sugden of audio drama podcast Victoriocity, Richard Penner of audio drama podcast Infinite Now as well as  Amanda McLoughlin and Julia Schifini of Spirits Podcast.

 

(James gets stuck on the names of Richard Penner and Julia Schifini. Exits the recording booth, still repeating the names, gets a drink. James makes his way back to the recording booth)

 

This episode contained audio from the Nancy Drew Reporter 1939 and new material by our composer Kurt C. Nelson. Additional music and sounds used from public domain and creative commons sources.

 

(James continues to repeat the names under the rest of the outro recording. Cracking himself up and doing funny voices)

 

We’d like to thank all the fans that voted for us in the Audio Verse Awards. We appreciate it more than you could know.

 

As always I’m James Oliva. Till next time.  

 

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