Burying Frank

by Hayley Hofbauer

  • Literary (Genre) Comedy
  • Literary (Length) Long (3000+words)
  • Scripts (Medium) Film

The first 25 pages of a feature film script. When Frank suddenly drops dead at 48, his wife Luciana is left with surprising burial instructions and the perceived truth that her life has been squandered. Luciana enlists her suburban neighbour to fulfill her last obligation to Frank before freedom can be hers. Unfortunately, a posthumous curse forces both women on the run from the law in a foreign country and increasingly absurd world. It's through running from the past and present that they both find a new path towards the future.

OPENING CREDITS ROLL over a black screen. CREDITS END.

INT. LUCIANA'S HOUSE/BEDROOM - EARLY MORNING
Luciana, 40's, Italian/Canadian, typically average Suburban wife and mother, is sleeping alone in the BED of her large but dated bedroom. Luciana awakens to muffled but audible BOOMING MUSIC from OFFSCREEN. Luciana looks at a bedside CLOCK that reads 6:48am. Luciana looks out the WINDOW to see a CAR with the motor running parked askew in the DRIVEWAY. She is disgusted.

CUT TO:

EXT. LUCIANA'S HOUSE/DRIVEWAY - MOMENTS LATER
Luciana is seen EXITING the FRONT DOOR in PAJAMAS, as she marches towards the driver side door of the car. Swiftly, Luciana opens the DOOR where DON, 40's, Italian/Canadian, drunkenly SPILLS out of the car onto the pavement. Luciana reaches into the car to turn the MUSIC OFF.

LUCIANA
What the hell are you doing? Jesus
Christ! The kids are going to be up
soon!

FRANK
Hhhuhhh???

Frank sniffles as a white powder coats his filthy snout.

LUCIANA
Into the house right now. The
neighbors for God's sake!

A BUSINESSMAN, 40's, professional wearing a suit and holding a BRIEFCASE is seen leaving the house across the street, to begin his commute to gainful employment.Unlike Frank...

FRANK
Honey, I'm home...The car broke down -
had to get a a...miss you?...The
car...

LUCIANA
Uh-huh.

Luciana peels Franks up off the pavement and drags him into the house.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. LUCIANA'S HOUSE/FRONT FOYER - MOMENTS LATER
Luciana drags Don up the STAIRCASE in the front foyer. Her mother, ROSA, Italian, 60's, fast talking, professional homemaker from the old country, lets herself into the home holding two large bags of TOILET PAPER. Luciana stops midway on the stairs while holding Frank up.

LUCIANA
Ma, what are you doing here so early?

ROSA
I couldn't sleep. Thinking about
you and the kids using that 'recycled'
toilet paper. Makes a me sick.
This 'economic friendly' it's not a
right. You get sick.

LUCIANA
Ma - I told you - it's not used toilet
paper...

ROSA
Toilet paper should only be used
once I tell you.

Rosa notices a drunken Frank.

ROSA (CONT'D)
Luciana, What the hell is wrong with
him?

LUCIANA
He's sick.

ROSA
Again? He's a bum. A no good bum.
What sick? Luciana, You keep him at
a home at night. He's sick in the
head. Why you let him out? You
must keep him out of the trouble.
Sick...I'll give you sick...

Rosa climbs the stairs to help Luciana carry Frank. The two women schlep Frank towards the bedroom while they chat.

ROSA (CONT'D)
Maria from the church has a gout
that would kill a mule. Mary mother
of God, is he alive? Good for
nothing...I'll send Papa to the
shop to cover for him.

LUCIANA
Ma, don't worry - I'll go to the
shop today. Can you get the
kids ready for school while I get
him to bed? The bus is gonna be
here soon.

ROSA
OK - but who a gonna clean the house
if your at the shop?

Rosa scurries off. Luciana drags Frank into the bedroom.

LUCIANA
Thanks Ma.

CUT TO:

INT. LUCIANA'S HOUSE/BEDROOM - MOMENTS LATER
Luciana drags Frank, and plops him on the bed where he instantly SNORES loudly. Luciana is disgusted.

LUCIANA
Frank. Are you insane?
You could've killed someone.

Frank is barely conscious. Luciana gazes at the pathetic sight of Frank. Frank MUTTERS through his SNORING.

FRANK
Mmm - sit over here...

Luciana nods her head. She begins to undress Frank as if he is a child.

INT. LUCIANA'S HOUSE/KITCHEN - NIGHT
Luciana and her friend SYDNEY, 30's, very attractive, former fashionable city girl turned fellow suburban mom, sit at the typical family style kitchen table and chat. Luciana cooks while Sydney enjoys a juice.

SYDNEY
I don't know about going back to
work. The commute to the city, the
long hours, the showering, make-up,
high heels. Maybe I'll stay at home.
Avery is only five, and Michael is
always at the office. That husband
of mine works like a demon.

LUCIANA
Well then he has something in common
with Frank - Frank is a demon!

They laugh.

SYDNEY
Why don't you just leave him already?

LUCIANA
And do what? Indirectly kill my
parents through the embarrassment?
Torment my children with divorced
parent issues? It would be an
emotional massacre.

SYDNEY
Luce, I think the kids would live.
It's just a divorce - not unloading
an oozie from a bell tower. They're
teenagers. They care
about smoking pot and having
sex. God that sounds fun... Why don't
you threaten Frank with a divorce and
he'll be scared into decency. Maybe
I should try that...

LUCIANA
What are you talking about?

SYDNEY
I don't know. Michael has just been
so weird, ya know? Distant,
irritable, angry all the time. He's
always at the office. Or the gym
suddenly. He just
doesn't seem to like me anymore.

LUCIANA
Welcome to my life.

The phone RINGS. Luciana answers.

LUCIANA (CONT'D)
(to phone)
Hello?
(pause)
Yes, this is she.
(pause)
Yes, Frank Anthony is my husband.
Who is this?

Luciana listens intently, and then DROPS the phone which
HITS the FLOOR. Luciana looks stunned.

SYDNEY
Luce - what the fuck?
Luce!

Luciana looks at Sydney.

LUCIANA
Frank's dead.

Luciana is frozen and stares at Sydney.

SYDNEY
What?!? What are you.. wait a minute.
Wait a minute. Are you sure?

Luciana freezes for a moment, then quickly grabs the PHONE off the ground.

LUCIANA
(to phone)
Hello? You there?
(pause)
Okay - who are you?
(pause)
Uh huh...
(pause)
On the football field?
(pause)
What?
(pause)
Cocaine?!? Uch. Are you sure he's
dead? He's probably just passed out.
(pause)
Okay. I'm on my way.

Luciana puts the PHONE on the counter, and is frozen.

SYDNEY
Luce, is Frank dead? Like, dead
dead?

LUCIANA
Ahh, I don't know. That's insane.
Dead? No! That can't be right.

SYDNEY
Holy Shit. Wow. What do you do?
Like, should you call someone or
something?

LUCIANA
No - I think I'm the someone that
was called. Is this happening? I
thought he'd live forever. I thought
he was pickled.

SYDNEY
Oh my God. What now?

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. LAWYER'S OFFICE - DAY
LAWYER, 50's, male, well groomed sits behind a ornamental wooden DESK in a stately office. He reads DOCUMENTS. Luciana, dressed in black, sits across from Lawyer, and beside Rosa, dressed in black, holding her hand.

LAWYER
It appears that the burial
instructions are quite specific.

LUCIANA
I don't understand. He never said
anything about being buried in Italy.
He's never even been to Italy.

Rosa breaks out into hysteric sobs.

ROSA
He was a great husband. A great
father. Taken so young!

Luciana is mystified by her mother's words, but re-focuses at the task at hand. Lawyer hands a Rosa a TISSUE.

HELEN
(to Lawyer)
Okay. Walk me through this. Where
is Saterno?

LAWYER
Apparently, it's outside Sorrento.
The plot in the cemetery has been
fully paid for. It states here,
(Reads from documents)
that Frank's father purchased this
plot many years ago as a gift.

ROSA
(sobbing)
What a beautiful gift. Eternity in
the old country.

LUCIANA
Well, this is certainly the first
I've heard of eternity in the old
country...
(pause)
I think he should be buried here
for the kids sake. I mean, I think
a ceremony and a burial near our
home would be best for them.

LAWYER
Naturally, that is ultimately your
decision. As for the dissemination
of the estate, we are waiting on
documents from the insurance company,
and we'll meet sometime next week to
go over the details.

Rosa enters a dramatically hysterical episode and falls to her knees.

ROSA
Ahhhhhhhhhh. Why our Frank??? Why?!?
Take me! Why didn't you take me!

LUCIANA
(to Lawyer)
Would you mind giving us a minute?

LAWYER
Of course.

Lawyer EXITS the room. Luciana tries to collect Rosa.

LUCIANA
Ma, you gotta breath.

ROSA
Our Franky is gone! He was such a
good man.

LUCIANA
Ma, no he actually wasn't - calm
down.

ROSA
Luciana!

Rosa pulls out a ROSARY and does a hail Mary.

LUCIANA
We will do a beautiful service at
the Holy Mother Parish. How about
that?

ROSA
(gasps)
You spit on his grave! Curse you!
He has to be buried in Saterno!

LUCIANA
Ma, what? That's the church we were
married in - I thought you'd love
that idea.

ROSA
You curse yourself!

LUCIANA
Please stop with the curses. Not
today.

ROSA
You have to respect his dying wish.

LUCIANA
(to self)
Surprised he didn't want to be buried
in Columbia...

ROSA
You bury him in the old country. As
he wished. God rest his soul.

LUCIANA
I'm not schlepping his carcass to
Italy. That's ridiculous.

ROSA
Then he shall curse you for eternity.
The resting place must be where the
dead choose or his wretched, angry
spirit will haunt you forever. Let
our Franky rest in peace.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. LUCIANA'S HOUSE/BEDROOM - EVENING
Luciana is seen emptying Frank's CLOTHES out of the closet and laying them onto the BED. She folds the CLOTHES up to put into a BOX. Suddenly the bedroom door SLAMS closed by itself.

LUCIANA
Hello?

The silence is deafening.

LUCIANA (CONT'D)
Hello! Who's there? Tony, Christina?
You guys home?

There is silence. Uncomfortably, Luciana resumes folding clothes. Suddenly the bedroom door SWINGS open by itself. Luciana rushes over to the door, looks around and finds no one.

LUCIANA (CONT'D)
Kids! That's not funny!

The phone RINGS. Luciana answers it.

LUCIANA (CONT'D)
Hello?
(pause)
Christina is Tony with you?
(pause)
Where are you guys?
(pause)
No, just pick up your brother and come
home.

Suddenly the LIGHTS shut OFF and the room is DARK. Luciana continues to talk on
the phone.

LUCIANA (CONT'D)
Christina?
(pause)
I think there's a blackout.
(pause)
You sure you can see our street from
where you are? You don't see a
blackout?
(pause)
Just get home.

Luciana hangs up the PHONE and lights a CANDLE. Luciana talks to the empty bedroom.

LUCIANA (CONT'D)
Are you kidding me?

Luciana looks around.

LUCIANA (CONT'D)
Really?
You wanna ruin my entire life. The
first half wasn't enough? I don't
think so.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. AIRPLANE/ECONOMY CLASS - MORNING

Luciana is seated at the window seat, as Sydney, donning sweats and hair in a ponytail, is seated next to her in the aisle seat. Luciana looks out the window. Sydney flips through an Italian FASHION MAGAZINE.

SYDNEY
These clothes are fabulous. I love
Italians. Remember heels and new clothes?
We should do some major shopping.
How much are you getting from Frank's
life insurance?

LUCIANA
Syd, I have no idea. Let's just
bury Frank. I want him in that plot
as soon as humanly possible. I'm
telling you that son of a bitch is
gonna haunt me forever if I don't.

SYDNEY
I'll tell ya, that poofy mullet of
his is gonna haunt me forever.

Sydney notices that Luciana looks
stressed.

SYDNEY (CONT'D)
I'm sorry Luce. That was really
insensitive of me. His hair wasn't
that bad.
(looking for a smile)
Really? That was funny.

LUCIANA
It's fine. I just can't relax until
I know he's buried where he wanted
to be. Not that I knew anything
about that, or anything else that he
was doing for that matter...but this
it and then i'm free.

SYDNEY
We'll bury him right away, okay?

LUCIANA
Okay. Thanks for coming. There's
no way I could do this alone. I
hope they stored Frank alright.

SYDNEY
Of course they did. I'm sure they
transport dead people all the time.

LUCIANA
You think?

SYDNEY
I don't know but I'm here for you
sister! Everything is gonna be fine.
Greener pastures.
(beat)
Besides this trip will also give
Michael a chance to miss me and
realize what a dick he's been. There is
no way he can juggle his job, the
house and Avery without me. Absence
makes the heart grow fonder right?

The overhead speaker comes on with an announcement. STEWARDESS voice is heard speaking English with an Italian accent. The SEATBELT SIGN lights up in front of Luciana and Sydney's seat.

STEWARDESS
The seat belt sign has been turned
on as we are approach our descent
into Naples. Please remain in your
seats with your seat belts fastened
until the plane has come to a complete
stop. Grazie.

Luciana closes her eyes and firmly grips the ARM RESTS with her HANDS.

CUT TO:

INT. NAPLES AIRPORT/BAGGAGE CLAIM - MORNING
Luciana and Sydney, carry their small overnight BAGS are amidst a CROWD of people waiting at the empty BAGGAGE CLAIM BELT. Luciana and Sydney stare at the BELT.

SYDNEY
(to Luciana)
Should we be looking for a coffin?
Like, is a casket gonna come down
the belt behind somebody's golf clubs
or something?

LUCIANA
Umm. No - that doesn't sound right.
Let's go ask someone.

Luciana leads Sydney to an ITALAIR desk, where SOPHIA in working. Luciana approaches Sophia as Sydney stands by her side.

LUCIANA (CONT'D)
Hi.

SOPHIA
Ciao.

LUCIANA
We just got off the flight from
Toronto, and we have a sort of ah,
special luggage, and I'm not quite
sure where to pick it up.

SOPHIA
What kind of special luggage you
have?

SYDNEY
(whispers)
It's a coffin with her dead husband.

SOPHIA
Aye, I'm a so sorry for your loss.

SYDNEY
(still whispering)
He was an asshole.

LUCIANA
(to Sydney)
Let me do this Syd.
(to Sophia)
Where would I find the...the...

SOPHIA
Yes, is, of course. Please follow
me.

Sophia comes from behind the DESK and leads the women towards a DOOR.

CUT TO:

INT. NAPLES AIRPORT/WAITING ROOM - MOMENTS LATER
Luciana and Sydney are seated in a bare, white room. They chat.

SYDNEY
We'll get the coffin, get a cab, a
really big cab, and go straight to
the cemetery.
Will the coffin fit in a really big
cab?

LUCIANA
They have a special car arranged.

Sophia ENTERS the room.

SOPHIA
Hello Ladies. I am very sorry, but
we require that you come and identify
the deceased for our records.

LUCIANA
I don't think I can look at him right
now.

SYDNEY
No problem. I'll go. Stay here,
I'll be right back.

Sydney gets up and follows Sophia out of the room. Luciana sits, as takes a deep BREATH. She begins to rifle through her PURSE, and pulls out a map with the word "SATERNO" printed on it. Sydney re-enters the room, with a strange expression on her face.

SYDNEY
(takes a deep breath)
How much cocaine did you say he ingested?

LUCIANA
I dunno - he OD'd, why?

SYDNEY
I'm no expert, but...
(thinking)
That's a dead Chinese dude in there.

LUCIANA
What!?!

SYDNEY
Well, the dude in that casket is
like a thousand years old and bald.
Totally mullet free. And very Asian.
Maybe the altitude of the flight
shriveled him up or something?

Sophia comes running IN the room.

SOPHIA
(to Luciana)
I am so sorry! Somehow your husband
and Mr. Cheung Ling got mixed up.

LUCIANA
(to Sophia)
How could this happen? Where is
Frank? Who is Cheung Ling?

SYDNEY
(to Luciana)
Isn't that the new buffet on Pine road?

SOPHIA
(to Luciana)
This must be very upsetting in your
time of grief.

LUCIANA
(to Sophia)
Ya think? When is Frank going to be here?
Where is he?

SOPHIA
Your husband is en route to Hong
Kong, but we may be able to re-direct
him during a stopover in South Africa.

LUCIANA
No no no no no. This can't happen.

SOPHIA
I understand Mrs. Anthony, and we
here at Italair will do everything
we can to retrieve him as soon as
possible. In the meantime, we have
booked you both a suite at the Hotel
Sorrento, and we will make all the
arrangements to ensure that he is redirected
promptly.

SYDNEY
A suite?

SOPHIA
Yes, of course Italair will cover
all your expenses. We are deeply
sorry for this confusion.

LUCIANA
How long will this take? When will
he be here?

SOPHIA
Maybe one day.Maybe
four-five days.

Sydney looks like she just won the lottery. Luciana looks horrified.

CUT TO:

EXT. SORRENTO/HOTEL SORRENTO - AFTERNOON
A Conde Nast level beautiful Italian Villa is seen perched on the exquisite cliff population of Sorrento. A TAXI pulls up to the ENTRANCE of the elegantly tradtional Italian HOTEL SORRENTO. Luciana and Sydney get out of the TAXI. Sydney looks excited, while Luciana is moving slowly and looking around with care.

SYDNEY
Wow! And you said you'd be cursed...

Luciana looks around as if to avoid gun fire.

LUCIANA
I don't trust Frank. He must have
something up his sleeve.

SYDNEY
Well, it's not blood circulation.
Luce, relax! This is great! Let's
check out this suite!

Sydney b-lines her way into the Hotel. Luciana follows behind careful to look for any suspicious people or things.

CUT TO:

INT. SORRENTO/HOTEL SORRENTO/SUITE - AFTERNOON
The DOOR of an elaborate and beautifully decorated hotel Suite FLIES open, as Sydney bolts into the room with glee. Luciana mills about the doorway.

SYDNEY
Luce! We've hit the motherload!

Sydney examines the Rococco decor of this heavenly suite.

SYDNEY (CONT'D)
Luce, get your butt in here! Stop
seeking conspiracy. Let it go.
It's all good! He's dead and we get
a free five star vacation! God bless
him I say.

Luciana moves slowly into the Suite and smiles.

LUCIANA
You're right. I'm being crazy.
When Frank returns from China, we'll
bury him as he wanted. Let him haunt
the Chinese for a while.

SYDNEY
There ya go! That's the spirit!

LUCIANA
I'm gonna check out the bathroom.

SYDNEY
OK! That's my girl!

Luciana exits the MAIN SITTING ROOM of the suite, while Sydney finds a CHAMPAGNE BOTTLE sitting in a BUCKET of ICE on a TABLE. Sydney shouts out to Helen.

SYDNEY (CONT'D)
This is heaven! God bless Italy!
I haven't drank champagne in a
long time.

Luciana is HEARD from OS.

LUCIANA (O.S.)
This bathroom is insane! I think we
have a small pool! There's marble
everywhere - like a museum. You
gotta see this!

Sydney shouts a response as she POPS open the CHAMPAGNE and pours TWO GLASSES.

SYDNEY
Hang on - I'm gonna call home to
check on Avery, and let Michael know
what's going on.

Sydney picks up the TELEPHONE and DIALS while sipping the BUBBLY.

SYDNEY
(to phone)
Hello? Who is this? What do you
mean who am I - who are you? Hello?
Hello? Michael? Hey! Who answered
our phone?
(pause)
What's my hairdresser doing there...
(pause)
What!?!

Sydney drinks straight from the CHAMPAGNE BOTTLE while holding the phone to her ear. Luciana enters the room.

SYDNEY (CONT'D)
You fucking Asshole! 'Working so
hard for our family'... yeah, as
a Hooker! Where's Avery?
(pause)
Fine. Let her stay at my parents
for a few more days until I get home.
(pause)
A divorce?
(pause)
Love?

Sydney slams the PHONE down. Luciana is scared. Sydney turns her attention to Luciana.

SYDNEY
That son of a bitch has been boning
my bloody hairdresser. 'Sheila' for
fuck's sake! What the...

LUCIANA
Syd, I'm so sorry.

SYDNEY
This can't be happening. We have a
five year old daughter for fucks
sake. We're married! We took vows.
He wants to divorce me and be
with Sheila? I mean - Sheila?

Luciana goes to comfort Sydney.

LUCIANA
I know this is terrible. But maybe
he's doing you a favor. I lived
with a liar and a cheater for twenty
years and my life was a nothing but
a lie. I kept thinking he'd change.
He'd 'get it'. But he never did.
You don't want to waste twenty
years of your life like I did.

SYDNEY
I don't get it. Sheila has maybe a
grade ten education. Sheila has
fake boobs and lip injections! She
looks like a platypus! And her name -
Sheila?

The PHONE RINGS. Sydney grabs the PHONE and answers it by yelling like a raving lunatic.

SYDNEY
(to phone)
How can have sex with 'Sheila'? Who
says, "fuck me Sheila"!?!
(pause)
What? Who?
(pause)
A car for what?
(pause)
Okay. Ciao.

Sydney hangs up the phone.

SYDNEY
(to Luciana)
We're going out.

LUCIANA
Syd, I really think we should stay
in this room until Frank returns.
I'm scared.

SYDNEY
No way!
My husband is leaving me for Sheila
the platypus. There's a FREE car
and driver out there for us,
and we're going out.

LUCIANA
Maybe Michael isn't really having an
affair. Maybe it's an illusion, a
mirage created by Frank...

SYDNEY
Have you lost your mind? Now get
your purse and let's go.

Sydney grabs her PURSE and EXITS the room as Luciana skulks behind.

CUT TO:

EXT. SORRENTO/HOTEL SORRENTO - EVENING
Sydney and Luciana get into a Mercedes.

CUT TO:

INT. MERCEDES - EVENING
GIUSEPPE, 50's, Italian Villager is seen in the Driver's seat reading a NEWSPAPER. A CU of the newspaper FRONT COVER with a photo of a WOMAN with long brown hair, large Black SUNGLASSES, wearing a black, hooded GREY SWEATSHIRT, accompanied by a headline reading, "BELLA KILLER" is seen. Guiseppe swigs from a WINE BOTTLE.

GIUSEPPE
Ciao Bellas. Where to take you this
evening?

LUCIANA
(to driver)
We don't really know. Should you be
drinking that when you drive?

GIUSEPPE
I'm Giuseppe. I drive you for
your stay in Sorrento.

SYDNEY
Hi. I'm Sydney. My husband just left
me. This is Lucy. Her husband just
died, and we're waiting for his dead
body to arrive here so we can bury
him.

Giuseppe hands his WINE BOTTLE to Sydney.

GIUSEPPE
Here.

SYDNEY
Thanks.

Maggie swigs from the WINE BOTTLE and offers it to Luciana who declines.

GIUSEPPE
I know the place to take you.
The men they come, they go.
Have some food some wine and buy a
dress.

SYDNEY
Okay.

LUCIANA
I want to go back to the room.

SYDNEY
Onward Giuseppe!

DISSOLVE TO:

EXT. SORRENTO/HOTEL SORRENTO - EVENING
The Taxi is seen screeching away from the hotel. The stunning sights of the Sorrento cliffside village is seen as the Taxi is driving through the twisty, narrow roads. The orange sunset on the Mediterranean provides an unparalleled natural beauty, quite contrary to Sydney's marital disaster.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. SORRENTO/PATIO RESTAURANT - NIGHT
Sydney is seen chugging back RED WINE while crying as an untouched PASTA entree adorns her place setting. Luciana is drinking a COFFEE and eating a SALAD. The Restaurant is perched on a cliff overlooking the SEA. CLASSICAL ITALIAN MUSIC is HEARD. Sydney is drunk. Luciana tries to hide her fear of impending doom.

SYDNEY
Just like that. What happened to
the vows? Love, honour, and other
shit...

LUCIANA
Eat your pasta. You need some food.

SYDNEY
I need Michael to love me again. I
can't live without him. What's
going to happen now...

Sydney wipes her eyes and rummages through her BAG and pulls out a large pair of DARK SUNGLASSES to put on her face.

SYDNEY
My eyes must look like shit. God
these things are dark.

LUCIANA
You look fine. Put down the wine.
You need a coffee.

SYDNEY
I need to go home.

Suddenly, CARLO, late 30's, very handsome Italian Police officer
walks past Sydney and Luciana's table. Carlo stares at Sydney. Sydney looks at Carlo.

SYDNEY
(to Carlo)
Go away! Ya 'Y'chromosome.

Sydney drops her head to the table and weeps. Carlo walks away taking a double take at Sydney.

LUCIANA
Oh boy.

Luciana looks around and call out to a WAITER.

LUCIANA
Check please?!?

SYDNEY
I need a plane. I gotta get
Michael...

LUCIANA
Syd, you can't go anywhere tonight.
Let's go back to the hotel, alright?
We'll get you a flight home tomorrow.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. SORRENTO/HOTEL SORRENTO/SUITE - LATE NIGHT
As Sydney falls into the Suite, the PHONE is heard ringing. Sydney falls over herself to answer it.

SYDNEY
(to phone)
Michael? It's my fault.
I'm a bitch. Everything is my fault.
Your affair, the Middle Eastern
conflict...
(pause)
Rosa? You're Where's Michael.
(pause)
Here's Luciana.

Sydney passes the PHONE to Luciana and sloppily begins to toss random THINGS into her BAG. Luciana talks on the PHONE.

LUCIANA
Ma? I was just going to call you.
How did you know I was here?
(pause)
Oh, good thinking. Yeah, the airline
is putting us up until Frank's body
arrives.
(pause)
The lawyer said what?
(pause)
But the Life Insurance Policy was
taken out years ago...
(pause)
He what?!?
(pause)
How many mortgages did he take out?
Wait! I didn't sign for any of those!
(pause)
Ma, what are you telling me.
(pause)
Nothing? No Nothing? I'm gonna
call the lawyer tomorrow to straighten
this up. You must be confused. Let
me call you tomorrow. Bye.

Luciana hangs up the PHONE. She is frozen. Sydney tries to pick up her overstuffed BAG, and falls over.

SYDNEY
Ahhh. Fuck the bag.

LUCIANA
It can't be true.

SYDNEY
It's just a bag.

LUCIANA
That son of a bitch.

SYDNEY
What?

LUCIANA
Not only did Frank cancel his life
insurance policy, but he must have
forged my name to take out two
mortgages on the house. I owe the
bank three hundred thousand dollars!

SYDNEY
Holy shit! Really?

LUCIANA
That's what my mom said. She
spoke to the lawyer today. I need a
drink.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. SORRENTO/HOTEL SORRENTO/SUITE - MORNING
Sydney's slowly opens her EYES, as she is awakening from a night of sleeping on the FLOOR beside the COUCH. Luciana is hovering over her.

LUCIANA
Syd, get up. Come on. We have to
go to the airport. There's a flight
home for you and Frank's body is
arriving in an hour.

FRANK
(groggy)
Huh? Already? I thought he went to
China? Where's Cheung Ling? I'm hungry.

LUCIANA
The flight to China was delayed and
they got him off the plane and flew
him here.

SYDNEY
Oh God. Michael left me
for Sheila?

LUCIANA
Yup.

Luciana throws a GREY HOODED SWEATSHIRT at Sydney's head.

LUCIANA (CONT'D)
Here. Put this on.

Sydney struggles to get into the sweatshirt. She puts the HOOD over her head.

LUCIANA
Syd, I have a huge favour to ask.
Can you lend me some money before
you go?

SYDNEY
Of course. Oh my God - Frank
left you in massive debt! Right.

LUCIANA
I don't know. I have to speak with
the lawyer. But I want that man in
his grave before I do anything.

SYDNEY
Yeah, of course. No problem. Let
me go to the front desk and get a
cash advance on my credit card.

LUCIANA
Thanks Syd. I owe you.

Sydney shuffles out of the room and puts on her large DARK SUNGLASSES.

SYDNEY
Don't worry. I'll be right back.

Sydney leaves the room.

CUT TO:

INT. SORRENTO/HOTEL SORRENTO/LOBBY - MORNING
Sydney makes her way to the front desk where she notices CARLO in his POLICE UNIFORM, holding the same newspaper PICTURE of a cloaked woman in large SUNGLASSES as Giuseppe was reading the previous day. Sydney stops dead in her tracks as she sees and hears Carlo talk to the HOTEL RECEPTIONIST.

CARLO
Sydney Grier.

Carlos shows the Hotel Receptionist a WANTED FLYER with a PICTURE of a woman in DARK SUNGLASSES aiming a GUN at a MAN in a BANK who looks eerily like Sydney. Sydney sees the PICTURE with the words "Identified as SYDNEY GRIER" written on the cover. Sydney looks at herself in a MIRROR, looks around and dives behind a decorative TREE. Carlo can be seen talking to the Hotel Receptionist as Sydney crawls behind any FURNITURE in the lobby to escape towards the elevator and crawls in as the elevator doors open and a STYLISH ITALIAN COUPLE exit. The doors close behind Sydney as Carlo is seen watching the elevator.

Contact Author

Other Works by Hayley Hofbauer

Poems For the Wry

Most Mortifying Moment EVER!

Woman with Child

Internal

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