STEVE CAMILLE LORRA BETRAND conversation with mother & daughter ------------------ ucf Rich guy - Mr. Cross Mom- Pres-friend Rick-friend Carly-girlfriend City Councilman Vernon Brown doesn't see the sport in cage fighting. "Boxing has rules, it has form and style to it," said Brown. "But the rules to this sport are, 'No gouging of the eyes, no fish hook to the mouth, no fingers in orifices.' Those are the rules. Those aren't rules. That's street fighting in a cage."

FADE IN:

INT. JEROME'S APT.

PRES and RICK, both slacker-type guys in their early 20s are laughing their heads off hysterically.  JEROME, a somewhat built guy the same age is just sitting there with absolutely no expression. 

PRES
Why do people cage fight anyway?

Pres imitates a police siren.

RICK
Girls do this too apparently.

Pres laughs hysterically.  Rick joins him.

JEROME
I'd never fight a girl.

RICK
Well, yeah, but you're not a cage fighter.

INT. JEROME'S ROOM - NEXT DAY

Jerome is wearing a suit and straightens his tie.

INT. RESTAURANT - MOMENTS LATER

MR. CROSS, a heavyish man who's easily in his mid-40s is dining with Jerome.

MR. CROSS
I've decided to invest $20,000 in your career.  Don't let me down.

Jerome is impressed.

JEROME
Are you sure you want to spend that much?

MR. CROSS
That's just pennies to me.  Prove me right and I'll invest much more.  Don't let me down tonight.  If you're not dead, you'll wish you were.

INT. CAGE FIGHTING ARENA

Jerome's back is slammed into the cage by OPPONENT, a man with a crazy look, about Jerome's height and stature.

Jerome recovers as Opponent grabs a beer bottle that a fan hands him through the cage.  Jerome misses the bottle when Opponent aims for his head.  Jerome spins Opponent and throws Opponent into the shattered glass from the beer bottle.  Blood is all over Opponent's face and left hand.

Jerome stands the victorious winner while the crowd cheers.  Jerome looks to the side to see Mr. Cross giving an approving nod.

EXT. STREET - MOMENTS LATER
Jerome is with CARLY, his attractive, skinny girlfriend with light brown hair.
CARLY
I always worry about you.
JEROME
You want to get some ice cream?
CARLY
You could end up paralyzed!
JEROME
Would you still love me?
CARLY
Of course, but...
Jerome kisses her cheek.
JEROME
Then itís all okay.

INT. CAGE FIGHTING ARENA - BACKSTAGE

JEROME
But Mr. Cross, I never agreed to fight "The Destroyer".

MR. CROSS
I have my money wrapped in this fight.  You're fighting him.

JEROME
But I'll die!  And you said I'd better not.

MR. CROSS
If you fight tonight and win, I'll let you live.  If you walk away from this fight, you'll die.

JEROME
What if I lose?

MR. CROSS
Don't lose.

INT. CAGE FIGHTING ARENA

Jerome is unable to stand.  The standy paramedic runs to Jerome's side to see if he can do anything.  Sirens can be heard.

EXT. JEROME'S MOTHER'S HOUSE - DRIVEWAY

Jerome is in a wheelchair.  Rick and Pres are passing by when they see him.  They almost turn in the driveway, but instead start laughing hysterically and walk away.

EXT. JEROME'S MOTHER'S HOUSE - DRIVEWAY - MOMENTS LATER

Jerome is with Carly and MOTHER, who is a short woman in her 50s.

CARLY
I always said I'd take care of Jerome no matter what.  I'll love him forever and this doesn't change a thing.

MOTHER
You're fooling yourself.  Ruin your life.  I don't care.  But I don't see how you can say that.  I have no more use for him.  He can no longer make me proud.

INT. JEROME'S APT.

Carly is fixing a nice dinner, while Jerome is sitting at the table.  The doorbell rings.

CARLY
I'll get it.

JEROME
No, you're busy fixing dinner.  I'll see who it is.  

Jerome wheels himself to the door, but before he reaches it, it's flung open and there stands Mr. Cross.  

Carly upon hearing the noise, hides in the kitchen.

MR. CROSS
I told you not to lose!

JEROME
Mr. Cross, I'll work hard to pay back the money you lost on me.  Just please don't hurt me.  I have my whole life ahead of me.

MR. CROSS
Some wouldn't say so. (beat) I already decided to have mercy on you before I came here.

JEROME
Oh thank you, Mr. Cross!

MR. CROSS
That's why I killed your mother.  You can pay me back with the money you get from her insurance policy.  You can use the remainder for the leg surgery that you couldn't afford before. 

Jerome can't say anything from shock.

MR. CROSS (CONT'D)
You'll be back to normal in no time.  Minus your mother's presence of course.  My condolences.

FADE OUT

THE END


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