K.MARSCAPONE’S HOUSE INTERIOR
The ranch has a matching set of stairs off to the left of the entrance. The small house seems to have had walls removed; only the upward stairs set the small kitchen off from the rest of the house. Brown ceiling fans circulate regularly, buzzing just perceptively.
KEVIN allows CEDRIC to help him to his feet, slowly but firmly. He’s still winded from passing out.
KEVIN brushes himself off idly. He looks around his apartment. Two partially white canvases lay quietly on his easels. A piano’s white keys beg attention.
JUST, UH… (pause) GIVE ME A FEW MOMENTS TO TIDY UP.
SURE. WE’RE IN NO RUSH.
KEVIN plays a disconcerting set of minor chords on his piano (left hand only), pauses, then turns to the other side of the house and descends down a plain set of wooden stairs.
The basement of KEVIN’s house is cold. There is a mix of messily plastered walls and bare fieldstone. The floor, in contrast, is a warm wood, well-swept and clean.
KEVIN walks through a pair of open doorways to reach the back of the basement. A computer in black plastic sits on an ornate wooden desk.
KEVIN sits at the desk and pulls open the drawer to his right. He removes a silver cylinder, padded inside, a hygienic cloth white where the dim light caught its edges. It looks similar to a blood pressure monitor. He sets it on the left side of the desk.
When he places his arm inside the cylinder, the computer whirs to life and greets him with a overwhelmingly grey UI. KEVIN uses a mouse to fuss with the UI for a few minutes, reading and checking his own lifesigns. He seems nonplussed with the displayed graphs and readouts. When he removes his arm from the monitor, an animated hand waves goodbye.
KEVIN fades into his bedroom and prepares himself for the day.
// UPSTAIRS :
CEDRIC is sitting at the piano bench, resting his fingers on the keys as if he’s going to start playing. He moves his hands expressively over the keys but refuses to press them down, playing a whispered concert.
Behind him ascends KEVIN, dressed in a strange mix of clothes. A paint-stained white A-shirt is hidden behind an almost-black dress jacket. Jeans. CEDRIC hears him approach and sits straight up, removing his hands from the piano. The pair talk without eye-contact; CEDRIC looks at the piano (no sheet music loaded), while KEVIN stares absently in the general direction of CEDRIC’s blond hair.
(with pause) WE OFF?
CEDRIC gets up from the piano and exits the house. He stands at the bottom of the stoop, surveying the silence. KEVIN unlocks and locks the door with a simple brassy key. As a final remark, he jiggles the doorknob and tries to open it, satisfied when it refuses.
The children have disappeared and the street is empty. The cold air is windless. KEVIN gets in the driver’s seat of a bright sea-green sedan with a sort-of spoilered raised trunk. CEDRIC opens the opposing door on the right-back of the car and climbs into the seat. The leathered seats are wrinkled, the car is clean.
KEVIN puts on a floppy brown hat, fiddles with the controls, and starts the car.
When KEVIN backs out of the driveway, we see that the modest ranch sits on the edge of a large park. In the periphery is a bridge over the park. This looks strikingly familiar: it’s Astoria Park, a large park tucked underneath the Triborough Bridge.
KEVIN’s voice has changed timber. A few details in the car become visible; a credit card sensor, an NYC taxi badge that we can’t read.
CEDRIC takes a pause, looking out the window. KEVIN is driving away from the bridge, crossing under the 31st AVE elevated train, but he doesn’t get on the highway. Instead he drives on the neighborhood streets. The pair drive for many minutes before an airport sneaks in from the north. CEDRIC finally answers the question.
DIFFERENT TIME, SIR. AND I’VE ONLY GOT TWENTY BUCKS. SORRY.
They continue to drive in silence.
// STRAUD MANSION //
The Straud Mansion is a forbidding four-story home in Jamaica Estates. The snow is clean; the airy open driveway is covered with a soft, powdery snow that is freshly disturbed by KEVIN’s car.
KEVIN parks boldly, diagonal across the oval approach. HE, CEDRIC exit the car on the left side and ascend the steps.