Transcript for Episode 6: Books Containing Words

[CLICK]

[STATIC]

[Grinding noise]

DISTORTED VOICE
This story seems familiar. Familiar like in that way where you try to recall a dream. You find yourself unable to retell it, or at least to tell it correctly. Like a story you know how to tell, but you don’t have the words.

[Background voice]

LOUISE

[Rambling, “whose mouth is my mouth.”]

[CLICK]

INT. BARTON’S APARTMENT – NIGHT

[Eating / slurping noodles / utensils on bowl]

GANS [around food]

Mm, this might be the best Chinese food I’ve ever had!

BARTON

I believe it.

GANS

So you grew up in Chinatown? How does that go?

BARTON

Black man can’t live in Chinatown?

GANS

(Uneasy) Uh… sure but…

BARTON

But what?

GANS

It’s uncommon?

[Long awkward pause.]

BARTON

(Chuckling)

You should look at your face.

GANS

(Nervous laugh) Oh… You had me there.

BARTON

Yeah, it was definitely uncommon. Mr. Wu adopted my brother, sister and I as to not break up the family. What was left of anyways.

GANS

Wow. How old when your parents died?

BARTON

Ten. The twins were five. You come across any names you recognize yet?

GANS

Nope.

BARTON

Most of these logs of money going out are to the same man.

GANS

Weird I guess.

BARTON

Large amounts of money too.

[KNOCK at the door.]

[Utensils dropped in bowl.]

[Gun drawn from holster and cocked.]

BARTON (CONT’D)

(Hushed)

Take the ledger and hide in the bathroom.

GANS

No.

BARTON

Do it.

GANS

That makes no sense. If someone is here for the ledger the gig is up. We have no where to go.

BARTON

Ok.

[Barton walks toward door.]

BARTON (CONT’D)

Stay put.

GANS [Distant]

I’ll be right here.

LILLIAN [Outside]

Barton! Open up.

BARTON

Lil?

[Barton disengages a series of locks, then opens the door.]

[Lillian and Archie let themselves in.]

LILLIAN

Hello.

ARCHIE

Look… you know she doesn’t fall for me lying to her.

[Door closes.]

LILLIAN

It’s never worked. I know when a lie runs across his face. I also know when you’re up to trouble.

BARTON

I should have never come to you Archie.

LILLIAN

Who the little guy?

GANS

Hello.

[Gans continues eating noodles through scene.]

BARTON

That’s Gans. He’s a friend.

LILLIAN

Yeah. You’re trying to get the little guy killed too?

BARTON

This is why it’s important to leave you out of this.

LILLIAN

Why can’t you just go to work and turn a blind eye just like all the other cops?

BARTON

That would be the wrong thing to do.

GANS

I don’t know. There’s a lot to be said for looking the other way.

Can’t say I look forward to digging even deeper into corrupt cops.

ARCHIE

Protect and serve. That’s what cops do. If you aren’t going to be one of the good guys then you aren’t a cop. It feels wrong to let this go.

GANS [Muttering to self]

Can’t say I look forward to digging even deeper into corrupt cops.

LILLIAN [Over Gans]

No. This is foolish but it would be even more so to let you do this with Archie. Can you just let this go?

BARTON

I don’t think I can. I won’t. It isn’t right.

LILLIAN

You are ruining your life Barton. But it isn’t my job to be your keeper. Archie doesn’t have a choice in this. We have dad’s shop to run.

ARCHIE

Sorry Barton.

BARTON

It’s better this way. This has always been my crusade.

LILLIAN

Put a stop to whatever you think your doing before you end up getting hurt.

[CLICK]

[Static. Distorted clacking and bells.]

THE VOICE

His eyes. They follow me.

[Noise continues.]

DISTORTED VOICE

Deep laugh. [Cuts abruptly.]

[CLICK]

INT. THE NOTHINGNESS.

STATIC.

[Peppy music.]

SLICK

Every time I bring Enfield No. 2 brand cigarettes to my lips I’m treating your senses to the finest tobacco this country has to offer. Enfield No. 2 goes well with anything. After a delicious home cooked meal from the wife. At a cocktail or office party.

[Dark low rendition of the US National Anthem fades up]

But my personal favorite is when I find myself enjoying it’s refined flavor as I watch that sunrise off the coast of my beach front property.

And if the wind is just right…

[Peppy music fades out, giving over to dark Anthem.

SLICK [Voice drops pitch]

…I can smell death wafting off the enemy corpses piled high up along the battlefield. I feel calm though.

Safe. Why?

Because I’m packing…

[Anthem drops out, Peppy theme resumes]

SLICK [Normal voice]

Yes, packing a carton of finest cigarette’s this side of a baron wasteland. A mans cigarette. The kind of cigarette that if a woman were to gaze into it’s heavy heart…

[Dark Anthem replaces peppy music again. Combat noises: machine guns, bombings.]

SLICK [Deep Voice]

…she would find a world too burdened to comprehend. She would only be left with more questions than what she started with. Questions like…

[Peppy Music returns.]

SLICK [Normal voice.]

What makes Enfield No.2s number one? Why Spishak uses state of the art machinery that reproduces the famous hand rolled cigarette technique of Wild Bill.

[Gun shot.]

Enfield No.2 cigarettes… cigarettes so fine they explode with flavor.

[CLICK]

[Static. Rhythmic noise.]

[CLICK]

INT. WALTERS OFFICE APARTMENT – NIGHT

[Walter swings the office door open.]

WALTER

Let’s regroup! The game has been changed!

[Whitney and Krog follow in behind.]

WHITNEY

Can we go over what happen?

WALTER

We don’t have time! A type writer is missing!

WHITNEY

We need to stitch your eye and get ice on… your WHOLE face. Did you run into a delivery truck or something?

WALTER

Close. The big man over there.

WHITNEY

Did you have to hit him so hard?

KROG

I’s waz holdin back!

WALTER

Can we please review over our now TWO cases?

WHITNEY

Fine.

(to Krog) Can you sew?

KROG

A wound?

WHITNEY

Of course.

KROG

Yeah.

She tosses him the first aide kit.

WHITNEY

You broke it you fix it. You two stay here. I put my notes in the safe.

[Pause. Slurping noise.]

WALTER

Please try less spit on the thread.

KROG

Spitz? Spitz iz good. You shut yur mouf now.

WALTER

Ouch!

KROG

[Laughs] Baby.

WALTER

(wincing) So… Ronnie is it?

KROG

Yeah.

WALTER

It’s okay I guess. Krog is better. Ouch!

[CLICK]

[Static]

[Mechanical noise]

[CLICK]

INT. THE NOTHINGNESS

[LHD Theme.]

[Door opens.]

DONALD [Radio distortion]

Honey! I’m home!

[He shuts the door behind him.]

LOUISE [Clear voice]

DON’T… shut the door.

DONALD

Why not?

LOUISE

You’ve locked us in.

DONALD

Don’t be preposterous! See…

[He attempts to open the door. The knob won’t turn.]

DONALD (CONT’D)

That’s curious.

LOUISE

See.

DONALD

One moment.

[He tries with more might.]

DONALD (CONT’D)

HA! That door… that door will not open!

LOUISE

I know.

DONALD

Well… this would be your fault then. Yes?

[Tuner]

LOUISE [Radio distortion]

So much is.

DONALD

So, we are stuck. Care for a drink?

LOUISE

No.

DONALD

Suit yourself.

[Donald begins making a cocktail.]

[Tuner]

[LHD theme becomes clear]

LOUISE [Clear Voice]

Who’s door is this?

DONALD

My door. Actually our door. Everything that’s mine IS your’s… equally.

LOUISE

No it’s not.

DONALD

Sure it is.

LOUISE

This isn’t my door. It isn’t your door. These aren’t my hands.

DONALD

Lovely hands really.

LOUISE

This isn’t my dress. Not my dress or my skin.

DONALD

I sure hope this is my drink.

LOUISE

It isn’t!

[Tuner]

LOUISE [Radio distoriton]

These aren’t my words.

[Tuner]

DONALD

No… I suppose they aren’t.

LOUISE [Clear voice]

Those aren’t your words.

DONALD

By golly! They aren’t. Who’s words are they?

LOUISE

Someone else’s.

DONALD

What will we say next? Who will provide the words?

LOUISE

I don’t know. Where will they come from?

DONALD

We’ll have to forage for more words.

LOUISE

Yes! Check the liquor cabinet and I’ll look beneath the Davenport!

[Music continues]

[CLICK]

[Crackly static.]

[CLICK]

[Music resumes.]

[Click]

[Crackly Static and a mechanical typewriter.]

[CLICK]

[Music Resumes]

[CLICK]

[Crackly static.]

[CLICK]

[Typing]

[CLICK

[Crackly static]

[CLICK]

[Brief strain of music box]

[Click]

INT. ELLS HOME STUDY – NIGHT

[Clock ticking]

[Extended sequence of reels being removed from cannister and inserted into reel to reel audio recorder. Recorder is turned on.]

JOSEPH [Warbly recording]

Chapter four. Benny’s situation was getting more grave by the minute.

Had he known the owner would be home and not two thousand miles away as he had been advised, he wouldn’t moved about the home in such a careless manor. He made a mental note to never trust an anonymous tip written on the inside flap of a pack of matches. Of course this lesson would mean nothing if Mr. Oldman continues his search for the mystery noise behind the couch. Bennie wouldn’t be surprised with his luck of late. Maybe he’d make a run for an exit once he was sure that Oldman was on the opposite side of the spacious mansion.

Then all he’d need to concern himself with are the armed men Oldman keeps employed. At least he was lucky enough to avoid them on his way in… or unlucky if you will. There could also be a third option. To the best of his knowledge Bennie could recall the very place he saw Mrs. Oldman the previous night retire her necklace. Mrs. Oldman… there was a dame.

With legs that seemed to go on forever and her… unique way she filled out her dress. But those thoughts were useless to him now. A choice needed to be made about what to do. The sands of time were falling. What was it going to be?

[The tape winds down.]

CARMEN

This story sounds familiar. Familiar like in that way, when you try to recall a dream some days later. You find yourself unable to retell it.

[Pacing]

Or at least tell it correctly. No matter how many times you try to start it over but it never comes out right.

[Digital glitch]

CARMEN [doubled with electronic distortion echo]

Like story you know how tell but don’t have the words.

[Digital glitch]

CARMEN [Normal]

I’m crazy. I’m sitting in my husband’s study. Poking my nose into his personal things looking for clues on how to find him.

Holding in my hand a card that was lock inside a drawer with a creepy message written on it. And now we’re talking to ourself… We?

(Chuckles)

And now it’s “we”. That confirms it. I’m touched with a little madness. I should stop. I hired someone to find Joseph and I should let them do their job. I’m just a housewife after all.

(Pause)

Just a house wife?!? You are more than “just” a house wife! Why would you say… why would I say that?

(Beat)

We should go to bed. That’s right we need sleep… I need sleep. I’ve had too much gin and now you should close my eyes.

(Beat)

On the other hand… I shouldn’t just give up. We need to go with my instincts here. My instincts are telling me that this isn’t just Joseph not calling or lying about where he is. I know my husband. I know him more than any other living creature on this planet. No. I will not go to bed. He left us a clue here. He was in trouble and he left me a clue in this very room.

[She walks to the book shelf.]

Maybe inside one of his books. Maybe hidden inside some secret panel I will find another card. A more useful card. Something that will say… I don’t… “Come find me here.”

[She slides a book from the shelf.]

[Digital glitch]

[She leafs through the pages, which echo as they did on LHD.]

CARMEN [With digital, but slightly different, echo]

Words.

She leafs through more.

Words.

(Beat)

Every page… words.

In large bold typeface is the word “Words”… on each page… the word “Words”

[Flips.]

The same.

[Flips.]

Again.

[Flips.]

Another.

[Flips.]

Another.

[Flips.]

Another.

[Flips.]

Yeah…

[Digital glitch]

[She throws the book across the room.]

CARMEN [Normal voice.]

Well Carmen… the only thing you’ve discovered is… you are cracked as a mad hatter.

INT. THE NOTHINGNESS –

[CLICK]

[LHD theme resumes]

[Tuner]

[Music continues]

THE VOICE [Deep, with higher pitch echoes]

There are times when he looks at me…

THE VOICE [Deep]

I am unsure how he looks. At me. There is something to it.

THE VOICE [High, doubled, pan out of synch]

His eyes follow me.

THE VOICE [All]

Side… to side… Side… to side…

[Music]

Side… to side…

[High Voice continues refrain of “Side to side” behind deep Voice.]

THE VOICE [Deep]

from the corners…I am unsure of what he is thinking…

THE VOICE [All]

When he smiles…

THE VOICE [Medium]

(Continues refrain of “side to side”

THE VOICE [High]

When he smiles…

THE VOICE [DEEP]

…his skin pulls back and distorts… distorts his face… distorts his face… distorts his face… Warps his face so…

THE VOICE [High]

I don’t know what he’s feeling.

THE VOICE [Deep]

What does he want… What does he want…

[Medium voice ends refrain]

THE VOICE [ALL]

from me?

THE VOICE [DEEP]

If I reach out will he accept me…

THE VOICE [HIGH]

…or…

THE VOICE [DEEP]

…will he bite me. Taste my blood.

THE VOICE [HIGH]

Snarl for more…

THE VOICE [DEEP]

Snarl for more… For now we choose caution and going forward… offering…

THE VOICE [ALL]

…respect…

THE VOICE [DEEP]

in our distance.

[Long static]

[CLICK]

[Static. Rapid typing. Music box plays at breakneck speed. Very brief.]

[CLICK]

INT. WALTERS OFFICE APARTMENT – NIGHT

WHITNEY

So let’s start the rundown, shall we?

[Walter crosses floor. Turns on gramophone. Music plays.]

WALTER

Start us off Whit! Krog…

KROG

Ronnie.

WALTER

…listen up and learn something.

WHITNEY

I find the beginning to be the best place to start. Shall we start with Mr. Fine?

WALTER

Yes. Suspect number one.

WHITNEY

I did notice a couple of plaques he had mounted on the wall behind his desk.

WALTER

The awards his publication had received in recognition of it’s daring novels.

WHITNEY

The ones in Joseph’s name.

WALTER

He downplayed Mr. Ells’ contribution to the business but still displays the awards.

WHITNEY

Maybe he doesn’t like being dumped. You never know.

WALTER

I suppose not. He seems like the jealous type.

WHITNEY

I also chatted with Brick Housener a former… writing partner to Ells? He spoke quite poorly of Ells skills as a writer. Suggested he had been ghost writing for him.

WALTER

What was your take?

WHITNEY

Unlikely. When I got to his desk he was doodling on a scratch pad.

WALTER

And?

WHITNEY

His desk and waste basket were filled with discarded doodles.

WALTER

Ahh, writers block! Good eye kid.

KROG

Or maybee he waz.

WALTER

He was what?

KROG

Ghosts written fo him.

WALTER

It’s possible. Let stay open to that take for now. He could have done something to Ells not out jealously of talent but for lack of praise.

WHITNEY

Good work Krog.

KROG

Ronnie.

WALTER

And did you give him your number? I was sensing a love connection.

WHITNEY

Troubles! Gross. (Beat)

He also mentioned Joseph had a brother that would come to the office and not so subtly ask for loans.

WALTER

From Brick?

WHITNEY

No.

WALTER

Right, Mr. Ells. Do we not have the brother in our notes from the wife?

WHITNEY

Nope. No mention.

WALTER

A tad odd.

WHITNEY

I’d say.

WALTER

Circle him. Three suspects. Okay. So this is a good start.

WHITNEY

There is more.

WALTER

I love more. Please continue.

WHITNEY

As I was leaving, Melanie the secretary, asked me to walk with her to the elevator. She began talking cryptically about letters that used to come into the office and that Terry had asked her to burn them for fear of being liable for something.

WALTER

That sounds very unimportant.

KROG

Huh?

WHITNEY

He’s kidding, Krog.

KROG

Ronnie.

WALTER

What do the letters say?

WHITNEY

I don’t know. I haven’t read them yet.

WALTER

I don’t think your taking this terribly seriously Whit.

WHITNEY

Really?

KROG

Youz knead to bee syreeus Mix.

WHITNEY

Yes! (To Krog) Thank you.

(To Walter)

I was after all trying to save you… again!

WALTER

Oh yeah that. You’re doing a real bang up job Whit!

WHITNEY

Anyways… that is everything.

WALTER

UHP!

WHITNEY

Here we go… what did I miss?

WALTER

Come now. The whole thing.

[Closing title sequence fades up.]

WHITNEY

What did I miss oh wise and powerful and beautiful private detective Walter Mix?

WALTER

His typewriter.

WHITNEY

The secondhand one.

WALTER

Yes. He sold his previous typewriter.

WHITNEY

He’s having financial issues.

WALTER

Ding!

[Ding]

KROG

Wez luking fer a typwritter.

WALTER

I was getting to that if you would just let continue my train of thought Krog.

KROG

Ronnie!

WALTER

It’s not the same typewriter.

WHITNEY

How do you know?

WALTER

Easy. It wouldn’t make any sense if we were looking for the same typewriter.

[Title sequence plays.]

[Peppy music.]

JAMES OLIVA

This episde is sponsored by Jennifer LeBlanc, whose novella, “Tribulations of August Barton,” is about a young man named Auggie Barton in his freshman year of college. If that wasn’t enough to deal with, Auggie is also trying to deal with his increased anxiety, his parents divorcing, making new friends, romance, naked tresspassing, biker gangs, and his ex-prostitute grandma, who won’t stay in her nursing home. You can find this book available on Amazon, Kindle, Barnes & Noble, and now the audio book is available on Audible, narrated by our very own James Oliva.

What’s the Frequency is written by James. O. Lee. Va.

[National anthem plays.]

JAMES OLIVA [Stilted, fragmented speech.]

Production and sound design by Alexander Danner.

[Peppy music resumes.]

What’s the Frequency’s theme music composed by…

[Theme music plays.]

Kurt C. Nelson. If you really enjoy the show, make sure you are subscribed to the show.

[Peppy music]

Please consider taking time to review us on iTunes or through whatever podcatcher you are using right now.

[National anthem.]

As always…I’m James Oliva.

Till next time.

[Anthem ends, followed by peppy trumpet wah wah.]

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