Arc 2 Episode 10

Arc 2 Episode 10

NOVA

Alright, this is it.

HATOV

(doubtfully)

This?

NOVA

Yup, flashing lights and a sign would kind of ruin the whole (beat) vibe.

HATOV

Nova, it’s a hole in the ground.

NOVA

Perfect with the overhang, slips right under the drone’s radar, move it.  If we stay out too long, there’ll be hell to pay.

HATOV

Nova, what is this?

NOVA

Fuck, everyone’ll know you’re (beat).  Uhm (beat) could you try not to look so (beat)

HATOV

So, what?

NOVA

Punchable?  Well, whatever, it’s done.  If we stay near the center, you (beat) well, your odds are a lot better.

HATOV

Nova, is this safe?

NOVA

There are different types of danger pretty boy.  Getting the shit beat out of you will be better than what the G.U. does on this planet.

HATOV

(whispers)

What do they do?

NOVA

You want the long or short version?

HATOV

Ehm, short.

NOVA

Well, if you don’t fit with the ideal they’ll make you fit.  Break you down, remold you into the perfect Unia citizen.  There’s a 70% survival rate.

HATOV

Oh.

NOVA

Ah, shit, what was it again?

Knocking in a rhythmic pattern

Metal slot slides open

CITIZEN 1

That’s the old knock, it’s been (beat) oh, Nova?

NOVA

Hi.

Door unlocks and opens, quick footsteps and a hug

Oh, we’re (beat) we’re doing this, huh?  Alright.

CITIZEN 1

(happily, but with knowledge)

Can you put the knife away?

NOVA

Mmm.  Reflex. You should know better.

CITIZEN 1

I knew you wouldn’t hurt me.

NOVA

(sighs)

Yeah, because I’m stupid.  What’s this about the knock?

CITIZEN 1

We changed it two months ago, we had some union soldiers snooping around, thought it was as good a time as any, but it’s slow to catch.

NOVA

I bet it is. What is it now?

Different pattern

The G.U. anthem?  Really?

CITIZEN 1

(shrugging)

Everyone knows it, and it’s the last thing people would suspect.  Who’s he?

NOVA

A friend of mine.

CITIZEN 1

(Pause, obviously measuring Hatov up)

He’s going to be eaten alive.

NOVA

We’re staying near the center.

CITIZEN 1

(beat)

I’m not sure that’s going to help.

NOVA

(thoughtfully)

I was afraid you’d say that, uh, (sound of her taking off her cloak) fuck, I feel exposed.  Come on Pretty Boy, put this on.

HATOV

You’re wearing more (beat) weapons than I expected.

NOVA

I said I don’t like it here. (To CITIZEN 1) You think he’s at least (beat) less punchable?

CITIZEN 1

If he keeps the hood down, maybe?  He doesn’t have anything valuable on him, does he?

NOVA

Fuck no.

CITIZEN 1

Good.  Welcome to the Underground.

Door opens and they walk through

Large cavernous place, lots of echoes, lots of talking

HATOV

(quietly)

It (beat) it doesn’t seem that bad?

NOVA

I didn’t say it was bad, I said it was dangerous.  These aren’t bad people, they’re desperate.

HATOV

Shouldn’t the union help them?

NOVA

(snickers)

Not for the price they’re asking for.

HATOV

But

NOVA

Pretty boy, if someone dipped their fingers into your head and scooped out every notion of your goddess, your planet, your princeness and left behind only love and Unia, would you be you anymore?

HATOV

But (beat) but they can’t do that.

NOVA

(quietly)

No, they can’t.  But they can damage enough of your brain that it hardly makes a difference.

HATOV

I thought you said the Galactic Union wasn’t evil.  That feels (trails off)

NOVA

That’s not G.U. sanctioned, it’s all Unia. Some of the native population wasn’t all gung ho for being taken over in the beginning.  The G.U. just hasn’t stopped it, that’s all.

HATOV

But

NOVA

Galaxy Eyes, this is how things are, here.  Okay?  Unia is supposed to be a Utopia.  Well, this is how they went about doing it.

HATOV

  (quietly)

And all those people above?

NOVA

Living perfectly happy lives, worshipping the union, sleeping in comfortable beds, never questioning a thing.

HATOV

And they’re happy?

NOVA

Weren’t you?

HATOV

(long pause)

Ah

NOVA

Come on, we’re here.

HATOV

A (beat) a tea shop?

NOVA

They also sell lunch.

HATOV

But (beat) why?

NOVA

Because it’s better than the shit they sell topside and I don’t have to pretend to be braindead for four hours.

HATOV

Oh, ehm, what was (beat)

NOVA

He says hi, and you look(beat) you know what, you don’t need to know.

HATOV

What?

NOVA

(beat)

Uh, he says, You look like someone you’d take into a back alley and rob, is that what I’m planning, and can he have a cut?

HATOV

Nova

NOVA

I said no, and that you’re a client.  I also asked for a table for two and promised him a really nice tip if he doesn’t tell people that there’s a target sitting by the back window

(beat)

You’re welcome.

HATOV

Uhm (beat) thank you?

NOVA

Really, he’s a sweetheart.

HATOV

It doesn’t seem like it.

NOVA

(shrugging)

Well, the medical fees have to be paid somehow, right?  The menu isn’t in Galactic Common.  They have well, soup, flatbread, and not much else.  Interested?

HATOV

(Uncomfortably)

Uh (beat) the flatbread?

NOVA

Ohh, bad choice.

HATOV

Wait, no

NOVA

Too late.

Footsteps fade

HATOV

(beat, quietly)

Nova, why here?

NOVA

Well, part of the allure is that he’s fully deaf.  He can read lips, but only if you’re speaking Galactic Common, or Ockeno.  I’m speaking neither and Alula spoke Aodese.

HATOV

Alula came here?

NOVA

Yup.  Do you want to know why?

HATOV

Ehm

NOVA

(slightly excitedly)

This.

Pulls back curtain unmuffle sound of waterfall

This is all that’s left of the underground forest and that water fall over there?  That’s their god.

HATOV

The water?

NOVA

Nope, the whole waterfall.  It feeds the entire forest, and for the longest time that was their source of life, it used to send off rivers and tributaries around half the planet.

HATOV

  And now?

NOVA

It feeds half of what’s left.  And it’s the reason why the soup here is absolutely fucking phenomenal.

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