EXT. JET - DAY

Sir Robert Densmore and Captain Krasker get off.  They are met by a black man in a white jumpsuit with "Commonwealth Mineral" printed on the back.  He is SEKOU NYERERE.

Sekou and Krasker greet each other warmly and shake hands.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                Good to see you, Sekou.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                                           (in good english)
                                And you, Captain Krasker.

Krasker grins and points at Densmore.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                You'll never guess who this is.  Go on, give it
                                a try.

Densmore rolls his eyes.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Oh, for goodness sake.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                                           (shakes his head)
                                I'm sorry.  I don't know.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                                           (grinning)
                                This is Sir Robert Densmore.  Your employer.

Sekou's eyes light up.  He takes hold of Densmore's hand and shakes it profusely.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                So good to finally meet you, Sir Robert.  I have been
                                in your employ for five years.  I am Sekou Nyerere.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Yes, of course.  We've spoken on the telephone several
                                times.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                If I may be so bold, Sir Robert, what on Earth are you
                                doing here?

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Yes, well . . . Overseeing the evacuation of company
                                people and assets out of Lome, actually.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                Then, I would suggest moving the jet to another
                                airstrip.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                Why is that?

Nyerere points to the nearby remains of a smoldering truck.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                We were under fire here early this morning by rebels.
                                Government troops repelled them, but now the government
                                troops have all disappeared.  I feel rather certain that the
                                rebels will return to loot and destroy everything at this
                                airport.  This jet would be a prime target.

Densmore sees the logic of what he's just heard.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Any suggestions?

                                                                 NYERERE
                                North of here is an abandoned airstrip, Sir Robert.  It
                                is little known and surrounded by dense jungle.  It will
                                serve admirably, I believe, for this purpose.  Have
                                Captain Krasker fly the jet to the abandoned airstrip.
                                I'll fly the helicopter into Lome.

Krasker looks skeptical.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                Why should I, your superior officer, allow you to go
                                into the thick of it while I go sit on my bum at some
                                bloody bleeding abandoned airfield?

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Not to mention that Lome is a war zone right now.
                                You'd be putting yourself into considerable danger.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                My wife is alone in Lome right now.  The danger
                                means nothing to me.  Someone must go for her.
                                                           (to Krasker)
                                Will you?

                                                                 KRASKER
                                                           (sighs)
                                And how am I supposed to find this abandoned
                                airstrip?

Nyerere hands him a map and writes the coordinates on it.


                                                                 NYERERE
                                Fly low and do not radio in for anything.  The Air
                                Force may have already gone ever to the rebels.
                                They consider all foreigners to be the enemy.  That
                                includes my wife and I.  We are from Cameroon.

Densmore and Krasker look at each other and shrug.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                All right, Mr. Nyerere.  Let's do it your way.

Nyerere sighs and nods.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                Thank you, Sir Robert.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Yes, well, just Robert will do.

Nyerere smiles.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                Then you may call me Sekou.

                                                                  KRASKER
                                                           (impatiently)
                                Shall we get moving, or would you both like
                                to see some photos of my children?

                                                                 NYERERE
                                One more thing.  Have either of you any weapons?

Densmore looks to Krasker.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                I have a pistol hidden in the jet.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                Come with me.

INT. COMMONWEALTH MINERAL'S HANGER/ LOME - DAY

Nyerere leads them to where the 212 helicopter is waiting.  He picks up a shovel.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                                           (frowning)
                                You're going to fight armed rebels with a shovel?

Nyerere walks to a corner of the hanger and starts digging.  In a moment he unearths a wooden crate.  He pries it open and reveals many Russian AK-47 assault rifles.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                Where did you get these?

                                                                 NYERERE
                                I bought them on the black market.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Russian assault rifles?  Brand new in the box?

                                                                 NYERERE
                                Who do you think is backing the revolution?

Krasker and Densmore each take a rifle and snap in a full 30 shot banana-clip into the breach.  Densmore turns to Krasker and pulls him to one side.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Well, old chum, things are a bit dicier than we antic-
                                ipated.  Wait as long as you can for us at this airstrip,
                                but at the first sign of real trouble get out of there.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                And how will you get out?

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Call my office and say "Omega."  They'll know what
                                to do.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                When you get to the airstrip, I'll be there.

Each of them takes several extra clips of bullets and stuffs them into the many pockets of their flight jackets.  Densmore and Krasker shake hands, then split up.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Sekou, let's get this show an the road.

Nyerere nods.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                Yes, indeed, Robert.


INT. JET - DAY

Krasker flies very low, barely above the thick blanket of jungle trees.

EXT. JET - DAY

As the jet crosses a small river, a group of armed rebels on the shore shoot up at it.  None of the bullets make contact and the jet is past them in seconds.

INT. JET - DAY

Several minutes later, Krasker spots a small opening in the jungle up ahead.  He picks up the radio handset.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                Come in, HVK this is XLM.  Do you read?

EXT. HELICOPTER - DAY

Densmore and Nyerere are in the 212 helicopter flying very high off the ground.

INT. HELICOPTER - DAY

Densmore takes the microphone.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Roger, XLM.  This is HVK.  Go ahead.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                                           (O.S.)
                                Destination in sight.  Everything looks okay.  I'm
                                going in.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Roger that, XLM.  Keep in contact.  Over.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                                           (O.S.)
                                Roger.  Out.

INT. JET - DAY

Krasker flies low over the abandoned airsrtrip and sees no people.

EXT. ABANDONED AIRSTRIP - DAY

The jet circles back around and lands.  It taxies to the far end of the landing strip and stops.

INT. JET - DAY

Krasker goes into the back of the jet and from a storage compartment takes a large green bundle.

EXT. JET - DAY

With his AK-47 slung over his shoulder, Krasker gets out of the jet.  The air is thick and sweltering, the mosquitoes are ravenous.  Sounds from the dense jungle on all sides fill the air.

Krasker quickly and expertly begins covering the jet with the roll of camouflage artillery netting.  His eyes constantly flick about looking for any signs of danger.

Once the jet is covered, Krasker goes into the jungle with a machete and brings back branches with big leaves and lays them over the netting.  With this accomplished he slaps the mosquitoes off of him and goes back into the jet.

INT. JET - DAY

He puts a kettle of water on the butane stove, settles back in a chair with the rifle on his lap, takes a copy of "Anna Karenina" from a seat pocket, opens to where his bookmark is and begins reading.

INT. HELICOPTER - DAY

Densmore and Nyerere watch as the land below the chopper begins to fill with huts and villages.

                                                                 NYERERE
                                We are nearing Lome.

Sir Robert begins tuning in the radio and speaking into the microphone.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Mayday, Mayday.  Come in British Embassy, this
                                is Sir Robert Densmore.

INT. BRITISH EMBASSY RADIO ROOM - DAY

CYRIL FRANKS, a young, British Army Corporal with curly black hair and thick eyebrows, immediately picks up the mayday call from the helicopter.

                                                                 FRANKS
                                Come in, Sir Robert.  This is the British Embassy.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                                           (O.S.)
                                This is Sir Robert Densmore in helicopter HVK
                                asking permission to land.

Franks sighs in relief.

                                                                 FRANKS
                                Thank God, HVX.  Let me get Undersecretary
                                Wolfitt.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                                           (O.S.)
                                Roger.

Franks pushes an intercom button on the phone beside him.

                                                                 WOLFITT
                                Yes, this is Wolfitt.

                                                                 FRANKS
                                I have Sir Robert Densmore in helicopter HVK
                                asking for permission to land, sir.  What shall I
                                reply?

Donald Wolfitt sighs in relief.

                                                                 WOLFITT
                                He certainly has my permission to land.  This is a
                                bloody war zone!

EXT. STREETS OF LOME - DAY

There is warfare raging in the streets.  Government forces have one side of the street, revolutionaries have the other.  There is shooting from both roofs.

A MAN holding a machine gun on the rebel side makes a dash from one building to another.  GOVERNMENT SOLDIERS appear at a second story window and the running man sprays some bullets at them, shattering the window.  The government soldiers reappear at the window with an M-60 machine gun and blast the front of the buildings across the street to rubble.  The revolutionary is shot to pieces.


EXT. BRITISH EMBASSY - DAY

A crowd of TWENTY REVOLUTIONARIES push against the gate.  Tenzing, Gueng and the other Gurkhas are there with their weapons in front of them, frozen at attention, ever so ready.

A helicopter descends from the clouds over the embassy and for a moment everyone's attention shifts upward - everyone except the Gurkhas, that is.

INT. HELICOPTER - DAY

Densmore and Nyerere look down on the crowd at the gate from the chopper.  They can see shooting going on two blocks up the street as well.  Sir Robert cocks his weapon.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                We seem to be here none too soon.

EXT. BRITISH EMBASSY - DAY

From the back of the crowd at the gate of the embassy steps Koudougou Boroma, his long face looking up at the helicopter.  From under his jacket he pulls out an Uzi, aims up at the helicopter and fires off the whole clip.

EXT. HELICOPTER - DAY

Bullets rip across the fuselage and through the main rotor blades.

INT. HELICOPTER - DAY

The chopper's controls at Nyerere's hands and feet go dead.

EXT. HELICOPTER - DAY

The chopper begins dropping from the sky.

EXT. BRITISH EMBASSY - DAY

Now the Gurkhas glance up, their weapons still trained on the crowd.  Koudougou Boroma steps forward, screams something in Togolese and runs away.

The helicopter crashes in the forecourt of the embassy beside a fountain.  Everyone in the embassy comes out to look, just as the revolutionaries crash through the gate.

The six Gurkhas with their carbines become a human machine gun.  Three fire, three cock their weapons, three fire, three cock their weapons . . . leaving very few of the twenty revolutionaries to get away.  The Gurkhas quickly move the dead and wounded bodies out and re-lock the gate.  Tenzing and Gueng both run for the helicopter.

INT. HELICOPTER - DAY

The Gurkhas open the side door and find Sir Robert underneath some boxes, bloodied, but okay.  Sekou Nyerere is really smashed up.  His legs are broken and his face is cut deeply.  He is quickly brought inside the embassy.  Sir Robert goes to the chopper's radio.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Come in XLM, this is HVK.  Over.

                                                                 KRASEER
                                                           (O.S.)
                                This is XLM.  What happened?

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                We were shot down, Chris.  The chopper is
                                totally destroyed.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                                           (O.S.)
                                I'll come and get you.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                No.  You haven't got a chance.  Wait there.
                                Call in "Omega."

                                                                 KRASKER
                                                           (O.S.)
                                But how long will that take?

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Forty-eight hours is what I've been told.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                                           (O.S. and skeptical)
                                Forty-eight hours?  I find that rather difficult to
                                believe.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Nevertheless, I hired this fellow and that's the
                                plan.  So just do it, Chris.  That's an order.

                                                                 KRASKER
                                                           (O.S.)
                                Roger, that, HVK.  Keep in touch.  Over.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Roger.  Over and out.

EXT. EMBASSY FORECOURT - DAY

Densmore climbs out of the wreckage.  Donald Wolfitt, Sir Ian and Julius Thornsby are all waiting for him.

                                                                 WOLFITT
                                Good try, old sport.

Thornsby steps forward.

                                                                 THORNSBY
                                I'm Julius Thornsby, Sir Robert, It's a real pleasure
                                to finally meet you.  I didn't think you would ever
                                actually come to Lome.

Densmore shakes Thornsby's hand.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Everything all set?

                                                                 THORNSBY
                                Yes, sir.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                That's fine.

Sir Robert goes up and shakes Sir Ian's hand.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Hello, Sir Ian.

                                                                  SIR IAN
                                Bobby, I'm damned glad to see you.  Very dramatic
                                entrance, I must say.  Good try though.  Don't see
                                how we'll get out of here now.

Densmore turns to all of them.

                                                                 DENSMORE
                                Oh, we'll get cut of here all right.  You leave that
                                to me.

                                                                                                       CUT TO:

EXT. CACTUS GROVE APARTMENTS/ SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS - NIGHT

The taxi drops Mike in front of the Cactus Grove apartments, which looks just like a motel.  Two floors of apartments all face in toward a pool.  Mike locates his friend Stan's apartment on the second floor and knocks.  No answer.  Mike knocks again.  Still no answer.

                                                                 MIKE
                                                           (resignation)
                                Oh, great.

Mike drops his duffel in the doorway.  He sits down on it and rests his head against the door.  In one second he's asleep.

                                                                 STAN
                                Well, if it ain't old dickface Kelsy.  What're you
                                doin' blocking my doorway?

It takes Mike a long moment to come out of his deep sleep.  He looks up at the dark figure looming over him and can't place where he is or who's speaking.

                                                                 MIKE
                                I, uh . . . Stan?

                                                                 STAN
                                Who do you think it is?  This is my apartment.

STAN reaches down and gives Mike a hand up.  Stan is also a big guy.  He is blond, tall and handsome.

                                                                 STAN
                                How long have you been here?

                                                                 MIKE
                                I don't know.  What time is it?

Stan unlocks the door.  Mike shakes his head.

                                                                 STAN
                                Three.

                                                                 MIKE
                                I don't know what time I got here.

INT. STAN'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

It's not badly furnished but the place is a wreck.

                                                                 STAN
                                Wanna beer?

                                                                 MIKE
                                Sure.

                                                                 STAN
                                So what are you doing here?

                                                                 MIKE
                                Well, I got kicked cut of the Air Force.

Stan laughs.

                                                                 STAN
                                What a coincidence.  So did I.

                                                                 MIKE
                                                           (Shocked)
                                What?

                                                                 STAN
                                Yeah.  A month ago.  Why did they kick you out?

                                                                 MIKE
                                Flat feet.  What about you?

                                                                 STAN
                                They found a pound of pot in my locker.

                                                                 MIKE
                                Wow!

                                                                 STAN
                                Yeah, pretty stupid, huh?

                                                                 MIKE
                                So what're you doin' now?

They crack their beers and Stan shakes his head.

                                                                 STAN
                                Good question.  I got a few irons in the fire and
                                I'm just waiting to see what comes through.
                                What about you?

Mike shrugs helplessly.

                                                                 MIKE
                                I have absolutely no idea.

Stan starts laughing, walks over and socks Mike on the arm kind of hard.

                                                                 STAN
                                Three weeks in the Air Force, that's pretty pathetic,
                                motherfucker.  You always had pretty rotten luck.  I
                                remember when Mr. Schwartz punched you?  And he
                                was the nicest teacher in school.

Mike smiles nostalgically.

                                                                 MIKE
                                Yeah, those were the days.  Or when you and I were
                                smoking a joint under the bleachers and the wind blew
                                the ash right into my eye just as Mr. Collinson appeared
                                out of nowhere.

Stan keeps laughing.

                                                                 STAN
                                You ran your right into that steel thing.  You got
                                caught and got a concussion, too.

                                                                 MIKE
                                                           (grins happily)
                                And five stitches.

                                                                 STAN
                                                           (bolting to his feet)
                                Let's have another beer.  It's good seeing you again,
                                dude.  I forgot how much we used to laugh together.

                                                                 MIKE
                                I didn't.

                                                                 STAN
                                I didn't really either.  I just sorta got caught up in
                                other things.  Remember the state wrestling finals?
                                What a gas!

                                                                 MIKE
                                Yeah.  It was the greatest.  Me and you were a team.
                                We did everything together.  What happened to
                                that?

                                                                 STAN
                                                           (shrugs)
                                Hey, pal, I don't know.  You grow up and go your
                                separate ways.  Nothin' lasts.

                                                                 MIKE
                                Yeah, but some things should last, though.  Like
                                friends.  I've been lost since you left.

                                                                 STAN
                                You've gotta get your own life together, Mike.
                                You can't depend on me.

                                                                 MIKE
                                                           (sadly)
                                I know.

Stan turns on the phone machine as he goes to the fridge.  Mike's voice comes out of the machine.

                                                                 MIKE
                                                           (V/O)
                                Hello, Stan.  This is Mike Kelsy.  Very funny
                                message, you fooled me.  I'm coming over.  See
                                ya.

                                                                 STAN
                                Good message, huh?

                                                                 MIKE
                                Very funny.

Mike cracks his beer.  The phone machine is still on BEEP.

                                                                 GRUBB
                                                           (V/O)
                                Heya Wild Man, this is Randall Grubb.  If you're
                                still lookin' for a job gimme a call quick.  915-662-
                                6775.

Stan shuts off the machine.

                                                                 STAN
                                Well . . . I told you I had irons in the fire.  I've got
                                a job.

Mike sits up.

                                                                 MIKE
                                You think there might be something for me, too?
                                I'd take anything, really.

                                                                 STAN
                                Mike, you don't know what this guy does.

                                                                 MIKE
                                I don't care.

                                                                 STAN
                                But you should.  He's a merc.

                                                                 MIKE
                                                           (confused)
                                What's a merc?

                                                                 STAN
                                A mercenary soldier.  He puts together armies
                                for hire.

                                                                 MIKE
                                                           (impressed)
                                Really?  Well, that's why I joined the Air Force.

                                                                 STAN
                                Let me give old Randall a call back and see what's
                                coming down.  After two years in the service, I'm
                                skilled labor.  You're not.

                                                                 MIKE
                                But I could load or unload or haul shit or drive
                                or something.

                                                                 STAN
                                I hear you, dude.

Stan dials the phone.

                                                                 STAN
                                You may not want to work for this guy, he's a
                                certifiable nut.  He's an ex-Special Forces, jet
                                pilot, that's a rich Texan mega-burn-out.  He went
                                to Vegas one time and lost over seven hundred
                                thousand dollars in a single night!

The phone is answered.  Stan gets serious.

                                                                 STAN
                                Hi, is Randall there?
                                                           (a pause)
                                Tex, hi, Stan Gold here.

                                                                 GRUBB
                                                           (O.S.)
                                Heya Stan, how you be?

                                                                 STAN
                                Great.  What'dya got?

                                                                 GRUBB
                                The real thing, partner.  Are you ready, willing
                                and able?

                                                                 STAN
                                                           (uncertain)
                                Uh . . .

                                                                 GRUBB
                                You said you were interested, remember?  Really
                                interested.

                                                                 STAN
                                I know I did.  And I am.  When?

                                                                 GRUBB
                                Now!

Stan shakes his head in disbelief.

                                                                 STAN
                                Oh, wow, I can't believe this.

                                                                 GRUBB
                                                           (serious)
                                Are you really ready, Stan?

Stan straightens up, glances at Mike and sees him pointing at himself.

                                                                 STAN
                                Yeah, I am.  I'm really ready.  And I've got a friend
                                of mine here that just left the Air Force that's also
                                interested.

                                                                 GRUBB
                                Do you trust him?

                                                                 STAN
                                He's my best friend.

                                                                 GRUBB
                                All right, it's your buddy's lucky day.  Four guys
                                haven't called me back, and I can't wait.  Both of
                                you, leave now.  TWA.  Tickets'll be waiting for
                                you at the desk.  Move it.

                                                                 STAN
                                Yes, sir.

Stan hangs up and looks at Mike.

                                                                 STAN
                                I think you've got a job if you want it.

                                                                 MIKE
                                I want it.  What is it?

                                                                 STAN
                                It's gonna be dangerous, Mike.  That's what Randall
                                specializes in.

                                                                 MIKE
                                I'm ready, Stan.  Let's go for it.  We're back in
                                business.

                                                                 STAN
                                All right.  Let me throw some shit in a bag and
                                we're outta here!

Mike is up and bobbing and swaying.

                                                                 MIKE
                                By the way, where are we going?

                                                                 STAN
                                El Paso, Texas.  Land of the free and home of
                                the brave.

                                                                                                       CUT TO:

EXT. EL PASO AIRPORT - NIGHT

Mike and Stan step out of the terminal at the El Paso airport and are picked up by a limousine.

EXT. LIMOUSINE - NIGHT

The car travels along the Rio Grande river until it comes to the entrance of a large, Texas style ranch.  An arched wrought iron gate with "The Big G" passes over them as they enter the sprawling estate of Randall Grubb.

 

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