³PAYDAY´

Written and Directed by: Fabian Lopez

1

Opening Scene: As credits are seen, we see the van driving to pick up Bryan from his house. On the last name, we see the van pull up to Bryan¶s house, at curbside view. The driver honks horn. From inside the house, Bryan grabs his hoodie with a piece of toast in his mouth as he runs to the door. Bryan Alright Mama, I¶m gone to work. [As he approaches the door, his mother reaches out and stops him] [As she pulls the phone from her mouth]

Mama Whoa, whoa speedy. . . you already late. A little sugar ain¶t gonna make you any later.

Bryan [smiles] Sorry Mama, it¶s just a big day at work---

Mama I know, I know, and I¶m praying for you. [She grabs him by his chin] Make us proud.

Bryan Us«? He ain¶t even here. He don¶t even know I have a job. [Horn honks again] I gotta go²

Mama Bryan²

Bryan Ok« I will. [Kisses her on the cheek and runs out the door]

2

Mama [With a big, proud smile on her face] Bye baby!

Bryan Bye!

Mama [Speaking to a person on the phone] Na girl, he still works at the record store. But he should be getting promoted to team leader today. [Person on the phone says something insulting] Hey, well you know what, it¶s better than what his father is doing. . .at least it¶s legal. [They wave one last time to each other before Bryan opens the door and gets in the van]

Driver/Rick My time is money.

Bryan Sorry sir. My mom---

Frankie It¶s cool. Bryan that¶s Rick. Rick, Bryan.

Bryan [Sticks out his hand] Nice to meet you.

Rick [Looks at Bryan¶s hand] Sµup?

James Man, your mama care about you. My T-Jones could give a shit about where I am. . . or what I¶m doing. She don¶t even care that I¶m working a 9-5. . . trying to stay out of these streets.

Frankie You¶re kidding me, right«? Wait, first of all what the fuck is a T-Jones?

3

James My T-Jones. . . My T-lady. . .

Bryan It means mother.

Frankie Oh, ok. Well, second of all, stop talking that street shit, µcause you don¶t know shit about the streets. Besides, that quarter of a mansion you live in ain¶t exactly screamin¶ poverty, okay µLeave it to Beaver¶. [Turns to Bryan] What¶s with this guy, always tryin¶ to make his life sound tougher than it is.

James Man, whatever. You don¶t know the struggle.

Frankie I don¶t know the struggle? I can show you some shit you never seen, youngster. Plus, I didn¶t have both parents and a full ride.

James Whatever, man. You don¶t know my struggle.

Frankie What« The decision to go to SMU or just settle for UTA? Real dilemma, bro.

James Man, whatever. They just sweatin¶ a nigga µcause I got hoop skills.

Frankie And reading skills« and biology skills« and²

Bryan And he can do the hell outta some trigonometry. [Bryan and Frankie burst into laughter.]

4

Frankie Wow. Now that¶s gangsta. [James flips off Frankie then turns his finger to Bryan]

Bryan Ok, ok. In James¶ defense, he didn¶t pay for those bad ass kicks he¶s wearin¶.

Frankie No shit?

James No«shit.

Bryan [laughs a little] Na, he¶s still tryin¶ them on actually. [giggles] He asked for a different size«and as soon as the guy went back to the stockroom« [makes a cartoonish running sound. They share a little laugh]

Frankie Wow, the rising of Nino Brown over here.

Bryan And if he wasn¶t such a fast runner, that mall cop woulda caught him.

James Oh yea, that¶s real funny. How you gonna try and talk, you ain¶t never done no real dirt.

Frankie Exactly. But he ain¶t tryin¶ to front like it either.

Bryan Well. . . I haven¶t done any dirt yet, anyway. [Frankie and James look at Bryan and then at each other]

5

Frankie I think he¶s fucking serious. We see the van turning the corner. Then it turns to go into the alley behind the store.

Rick Aight, y¶all.

Bryan Well our boss doesn¶t open the door for us until 8:30.

Frankie Even though we gotta have the store ready and open by 9am sharp. . . sonof a bitch. [Driver turns the engine off. Short pause] Oh well, I guess we got time to burn one. [Pulls out a blunt and lights it. Takes a puff and passes it to James. James puffs and passes it to Bryan]

Bryan Ah, no thanks bro, I¶m good.

Frankie Come on, it will put you where you need to be. [Before Bryan can think about it, Rick the driver snaps his finger; James hands him the blunt. He takes a puff and notices a car pull up.]

Rick That ya boy right there?

James [Seeing the guy get out and go to the door] Yep. Now we gotta wait even longer for him to come back and unlock the door. See, he wont let us in with him. We gotta wait until he goes in and does whatever it is he does and then he come back to open the door for us. And that bitch is always late, leaving us to wait for his ass in the cold. [Zipping his hoodie] Actually, I¶d rather be out there; it¶s colder in this raggedy ass van.

6

Driver Hold the fuck up, lil nigga. You better tell this chump; I¶m not here to fuck around with his little muppet baby ass. I will toss you the fuck outta my raggedy ass van. You better tell this bitch. [Chris enters the store from the back door. He checks his watch, wondering why his employees haven¶t shown up to work yet.]

Chris Where are those clowns? [As he unlocks and looks out the back door, he gets a phone call] Ya?

Dealer Hey, I¶m in the neighborhood and figured I would drop off kinda early.

Chris Kinda early? You mean like 3 hours early.

Dealer Look here, don¶t get smart assed. I¶m going to go see my kid today; s¶posed to have some big news. So anyway, I¶m dropping off early. I¶m outside.

Chris All right. Give me a sec. [hangs up and calls Frankie] Where the hell are you guys? Did you forget we open at nine?

Frankie Yea. . . uh. . . my car broke down. We had to find another ride. We¶ll be there in a few. [Nonchalantly hangs up and takes a puff before Chris can respond]

Chris Asshole. [Chris walks out the back door as the dealer pulls up. He makes an exchange in the driver side window. Stuffs a brick of coke in the front of his pants then heads back inside]

7

James Damn. . . that¶s like a kilo. That nigga be pushin¶ some heavy weight.

Bryan I told y¶all he was dealin¶. Kinda early though.

James Whatchu mean?

Bryan Well, he usually don¶t make these transactions til¶ noon.

Frankie What, you stalkin¶ him now?

Bryan Na. I noticed it when I was takin¶ out the trash«on my lunch break. [At this point, the camera is at Bryan¶s face. His facial expression grows from scared to gung-ho. A slow motion tone of Frankie in the background] Frankie Oh well« [Puts out the blunt] Y¶all ready to clock in?

James Yeah, I¶m ready.

Frankie Bryan. . . What about you?

Bryan [Short pause. His eyes blink in slow motion] Yeah. [he hops out of the van. Frankie turns his gaze from Bryan¶s exit to James]

Frankie Time to rock n¶ roll. 8

[He pumps the shotgun and tosses the bag to James]

James [Excited with a big smile on his face] Hell yea, nigga! [They pull their masks down and hop out of the van. Music starts. They run over to the door where Bryan is waiting. James anxiously looks around. Bryan is breathing heavily and looking as if he¶s trying to think his way out of it. Music fades into a quieter volume]

Frankie There is no turning back now, bro. Just do it.

Bryan You sound like a freakin¶ commercial.

Frankie Snap, Crackle and Fuckin¶ Pop! [Bryan takes a deep breath and opens the door for Frankie. Bryan quickly follows behind with James in tow. Frankie catches Chris coming out of his office and smashes his face with the tail end of his shotgun. Chris falls to the floor before he can realize what hit him; he blacks out. After Chris blacks out, we see the driver light up another blunt. As he takes a puff, a car pulls up. A young lady gets out of the passenger side and goes to the back door of the store. The driver tries to call and inform Frankie, but he soon realized that Frankie dropped his phone in the back of the van]

James [Coming back from the front of the store] Okay, blinds are closed and I made sure the front door is still locked. Bryan [Finishing the knot he tied on Chris¶s wrist] Alright. Now what¶s the combination?

Chris [Disoriented from the blow to the head] What combination?

Bryan The safe. What¶s the combination?

9

Chris [Playing as if still disoriented] What safe. . . I don¶t--[Bryan quickly grabs him to drag him into the office when the back door buzzes. James quickly runs to the back door to check the peephole]

James It¶s Veronica.

Bryan Veronica? What the hell is she doing here? I thought you said she was off today.

James She¶s supposed to be.

Frankie [Recollecting] Fuck. It¶s payday. She¶s here to pick up her paycheck.

Bryan/James Shit! [Seeing this as a chance to be rescued, Chris makes a desperate attempt to be heard]

Chris Veroni--[He is quickly silenced by Frankie¶s shotgun butt and blacks out along with the camera. Veronica buzzes again]

Bryan Shit, shit , shit!! What do we do? Frankie We got two choices« we either wait her out and risk the possibility of her calling the cops, or« we bring her in and tie her ass up too.

10

Bryan Fuck« shit! Umm. . . alright. I got an idea. [He grabs Chris and rolls him over] Alright, you¶re going to have to give her her check and send her on her way.

Frankie Are you fuckin¶ serious? He¶s a weasel. He¶ll try something. [Bryan looks at Frankie and back at Chris]

Bryan You even think of trying something, it¶s the last thing you¶ll think.. . . If you even get an inkling in your spikey fucking head, just remember what that shotgun felt like; only this time the pain will be coming from the other end. Got it?

Chris [Mumbles] I got it.

Frankie [Pulls up his mask] Damn. Couldna said it better myself.

Bryan Thanks. [Camera is on the outside of the door as the door opens up slightly]

Veronica Gosh, took you long enough.

Chris Uh« yea, sorry, I was in the bathroom.

Veronica Daaamn, I feel sorry for the bathroom. Hahaha! Whoooo! I¶m glad I didn¶t have to work today. Haha! I had meskin food last night too; so we woulda been fightin¶ for the toilet--[Quickly cut off by an annoyed Chris]

11

Chris Veronica, just take your check. [As he is handing her the check, he uses his pocketed hand to send a distress signal via text]

Veronica Ugh« [Grabs the check] Rude. [She turns to walk off, but remembers she needs to sign for it] Oh, don¶t I have to sign for it? [She gets cut off by the door slam] Asshole. [Walks away mumbling] See, that¶s why I can¶t stand working for him« [From the van¶s point of view, we see her get in the car and they drive away. As they pass the van, Rick turns his face so they can¶t see him. Back inside, Frankie is walking Chris back to his office with a shotgun to the back of his head. He throws him on the ground, where Bryan begins to tie Chris¶s hands behind his back] Frankie Alright, now for the last time. [Points the gun at Chris] What¶s the combination?

Chris There is no combination---

Frankie ---Don¶t fuckin¶ lie---

Chris ---It¶s a key, it¶s a key! I use a key.

Bryan Well, where is it? [Chris drops his head and sighs, hoping to buy some time. We see the dealer pull up outside the front of the store. He gets out and notices the closed sign and locked doors. He picks up his phone and tries to call Chris. Back at the store, we see James on a chair looking through a cabinet trying to find the key] 12

James Bingo!! [He untapes the key and jumps off the chair and heads to the safe. He opens the safe] Now this is what I call payday. [He starts to put money in a bag, and notices a gun. The others are distracted by Chris¶s phone ringing, so he sneaks the gun in his hoodie]

Chris If I don¶t answer, someone¶s going to know something¶s wrong.

Frankie Bullshit. See who that is. [Bryan searches Chris¶s pockets and reaches for the phone. The caller ID says Mr. White]

Bryan It says Mr. White« who is Mr. White?

Chris That¶s my supplier. I better answer that.

Frankie Ha!

Bryan How stupid do you think we are?

Chris Pretty stupid, if you don¶t let me answer that phone. He¶s all about promptness. If I don¶t answer, he will come back.

[After no response, the dealer immediately drives to the back of the store. Frankie gets suspicious about the phone call and motions for Bryan to hand him the phone. He checks the recent outbound calls]

13

Frankie Ah, you sneaky son of a bitch«

James [Afraid that he was spotted nabbing the coke and the gun] What«

Frankie This fuckin¶ snake dialed out! Let¶s get outta here. [James grabs the bag and they get ready to exit the office. Feeling like he has nothing to lose, Chris yells out profanities]

Chris Yeah that¶s right, you better run«you fuckin¶ roaches! Be careful not to meet your maker on the way out, you dirty fuckin¶ scum! You pieces of dirty ghetto trash! Etc.

James Maybe we should gag him.

Frankie Now you¶re thinking, µleave it to beaver¶. Good idea. [James is searching for a gag and Bryan pulls out a bandana]

Bryan Here, we¶ll use this. [He goes to gag Chris and they exit. Meanwhile, outside at the van, the driver sees the dealer pull up, so he reaches for his gun and as he comes back up he is startled by Fred, the neighborhood drunk]

Rick Oh shit!

Fred Heeeyyy, what it be like? Rick Damn it Fred, you scared the shit outta me. You almost got blasted.

14

Fred You shouldn¶t be in the alley playin¶ with ya¶self.

James Bryan, go get the checks.

Bryan What for? We got enough money.

James Man, we worked hard for that shit.

Bryan [Giving in] Ugh«okay. [He heads back to get the checks]

Rick Fred, seriously. I¶m workin¶ man.

Fred Aw, foot. You ain¶t doin¶ shit. Let me borrow a dollar.

Rick Man, I ain¶t got a dollar; holla at me later.

Fred Aw come on man, a lil¶ change will do. I need my medicine. [He pulls his empty bottle out of a brown paper sack] I¶m fresh out. [Rick starts throwing ash tray change at him] Rick Here nigga. Damn. Now go. [He reaches for his gun again, cocks it and mumbles] Shit, these suckers gonna get me a third strike.

15

[From a distance we see Fred scrambling for the change thrown at him. Rick slides out of the van, but his attempt at silence is failed by the creaking of the rusted van door. James exits the back door and is immediately struck with a baseball bat to the gut by a waiting Mr. White. White grabs the bag of money as James crumples to the ground. White points the gun at James, but abruptly turns to shoot Frankie coming out of the door. Frankie goes down without a fighting chance. He turns the gun back to James] Dealer/Mr. White Show your face, you little shit. Maybe I¶ll let you live.

James Fuck you! I¶ll show you this. [He pulls the stolen gun from his hoodie pocket and is quickly shot down by Mr. White. Bryan, startled by the gun shots runs out the back door where he is shot dead center in his chest asheµs pulling up his mask in disbelief. With a shocked look that quickly turns into confusion, he falls to his knees]

Bryan «Dad?... [The camera gets a close up on his face, he blinks his eyes in slow motion and when the camera pulls away, Bryan is back in the van. We hear Frankie in a slow motion tone]

Frankie Y¶all ready to clock in?

James Yea, I¶m ready.

Frankie Bryan, what about you?

Bryan [Beat] Yeah. [He steps out of the van]

Frankie [Puffs one last time and puts out the blunt and sighs] Let¶s rock n¶ roll.

16

James

Yep, another day, another dollar.
[They exit to go to work. The van drives off]

END

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