Amazon Grace Shooting Draft

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Amazon Grace

Episode #6
Production #V0806

Written by: Jim Fisher and Jim Staahl

Directed by: Charlie Haskell

Production Draft - April 07, 1998
Pages 1-2A, 10, 12, 13-13A, 14, 17-17A, 18-18A, 19, 20, 20A, 22, 22A - April 27, 1998
Full Script - May 02, 1998

Pacific Island Pictures, LTD, All Rights Reserved © 1998

(missing Cast List and Set List pages)

Teaser

FADE IN:

EXT. ACADEMY - DAY

CHEIRON strides across the empty grounds. Suddenly, his ears perk up. Was that a NOISE coming from the gymnasium? Cheiron crosses to the gym and shoulders the door open.

INT. GYMNASIUM - CONTINUOUS

Cheiron enters cautiously. WHOOSH. With a lightning quick reflex, he grabs a javelin out of the air, inches from his face.

CHEIRON
(deadpan)
Careful. You could put an eye out.

LILITH, a young female cadet, rushes to Cheiron.

LILITH
Cheiron, sir, I'm sorry. I was using the day off to get in some extra practice.
CHEIRON
The outsider works twice as hard just to be accepted. I know.

He hands her the javelin.

LILITH
Will there ever be a time when I don't feel... different?
CHEIRON
Is there ever a time when you are not yourself?

Lilith readies to throw the javelin again. Cheiron stops her.

CHEIRON
Remember, Lilith, balance in all things.
LILITH
You're saying I should have gone to town with the guys.
CHEIRON
A good warrior trains for combat; a great warrior trains for life.
LILITH
(resigned)
You might mention that to the guys.

EXT. PATH - SPOOKY FOREST - DAY

Misty. Eerie. Weird noises. Shafts of light cast ghostly shapes as JASON, IOLAUS, and HERCULES walk.

JASON
(dramatically)
Then it came again -- the eerie scratching sound. So the knave and the maiden sped the chariot away. And when they get home --
(big, dramatic finish)
-- they find the monster's hook stuck in the side of the chariot!

Iolaus and Hercules exchange looks; they're unimpressed.

HERCULES
When I heard that, it was a farm boy and a peasant girl in an ox cart.
IOLAUS
I got a scary story! Took place in a forest, just like this. In fact, it could have been on this very road. There were two, no, three young warriors returning from Troy. There was a noise.

A NOISE in the distance. Heads turn to listen.

IOLAUS
Like that.
HERCULES
What? Minotaur? Cyclops?
JASON
Your stomach growling?

Iolaus gives Jason a playful shove.

IOLAUS
No. It was...
(dramatically)
Harpies. Half-woman/half-bird beasts that swoop down and tear the flesh from your bones.

A STRANGE BIRD-LIKE FACE watches from a tree above.

JASON
Feathers as strong as armor!
HERCULES
Impossible to kill.
IOLAUS
And I swear it's true. Pounced on them right down that path!

Iolaus leaps a barrier and heads down a dark diverging path.

HERCULES
Iolaus?!
IOLAUS
What?
HERCULES
Can't you read? 'No Trespassing.'

Herc points to an animal SKULL pierced by a diagonal ARROW, encircled in a WREATH OF TWIGS and seated atop a PIKE.

IOLAUS
So? It's a shortcut. What? Son of a god and future king scared?
JASON
I don't break laws just because it's convenient.
HERCULES
We'll meet you back at the academy.
IOLAUS
(calls mockingly to them)
Chic-ken! Bwak-de-bwak-bwak!

EXT.PATH - SPOOKY FOREST - DAY

The temperature drops, Iolaus pulls up his collar. He walks into a huge spider web. Ew. A SCREECH. Iolaus freezes. Out of the trees drop - WAILING, armored, bird-faced CREATURES!

IOLAUS
HARPIES!!!

FADE OUT.

Act One

FADE IN:

EXT PATH - SPOOKY FOREST - DAY - A MOMENT LATER

Iolaus stands encircled by harpies. SHRIEKING, they rush him. Hercules and Jason charge into the fray. Harpies descend upon Jason and Iolaus as two harpies dive at Hercules. He dodges one and seizes the other, pinning her to the ground.

HARPY (CYANE)
Hercules!?

Herc bends close and pulls off a mask to reveal:

HERCULES
Cyane!?

Herc is enthralled at the sight of CYANE. A beat.

CYANE
You can let me up now.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. ACADEMY - GYMNASIUM - DAY

THE CADETS are paired off for practice. A wave of distraction passes over them. A CADET'S attention is diverted and he is knocked off the BALANCE BEAM by his PARTNER'S padded STAFF; a SECOND CADET is smacked by the return swing of the HEAVY BAG; A THIRD CADET gets whacked by the swiveling SHIELD of the PRACTICE DUMMY. Soon all eyes are riveted on the front door: Hercules, Jason and Iolaus stand with Cyane and the Amazons.

JASON
Now that we have everyone's complete attention, I'd like you to meet some friends of ours.
HERCULES
Fellow cadets, this is Cyane. She's the leader of the Amazons, Telaquir tribe.

"Amazons!" The word sweeps through the ranks as the cadets offer a tempered welcome. Iolaus sidles up to some CADETS.

IOLAUS
(under his breath)
And you guys said we couldn't meet girls.

Cyane eyes the cadets with disdain.

CYANE
(to Hercules)
Who's in charge here?

SIMULA, Cyane's trusted ORACLE, steps forward.

SIMULA
There she is.
HERCULES
But...

Too late. The cadets dutifully part ranks as Cyane leads the Amazons to Lilith and offers a salute of respect.

CYANE
We are honored to meet someone who has undertaken the difficult task of turning these boys into warriors.

Hercules catches up to Cyane.

LILITH
I'm not master of this academy. I'm Lilith, a cadet.
CHEIRON (O.S.)
Why do I not hear the sounds of practice?
HERCULES
That's our leader.

Cheiron clops in. Everyone parts to make a path for him.

SIMULA
He's sent a Centaur to announce his arrival.
(full of loathing)
Personally, I find them lowly beasts, but they make good servants.

Cyane nods in agreement.

HERCULES
(clears throat, whispers)
Cheiron is our leader.
SIMULA
A Centaur!?

The Amazons tense, fingering their weapons. Cheiron is a pillar of civility.

CHEIRON
(graciously)
At your service.
HERCULES
I offered Cyane our hospitality before they continue their search for a homeland.
CHEIRON
You are welcome here. The ancient feud between Centaur and Amazon is best left in the past.
CYANE
We accept your offer, Centaur. Our fight is with accursed Zeus, not with you.
HERCULES
(defensive)
I heard Zeus can be a pretty decent guy --
(off Cyane's glare)
Uh, when you get to know him.
LILITH
(stepping in)
C'mon, I'll show you where you can put your gear.
IOLAUS
(gentlemanly)
Want me to get that for you?

Iolaus reaches for a bag. An AMAZON slaps his hand away, hefts the bag and follows Lilith and the others.

IOLAUS
See that? A love tap. She likes me.
JASON
I don't know. I gotta go with Herc's technique. Keeping a sense of mystery.
IOLAUS
Mystery...?
(off Jason's skyward point)
You haven't told her Zeus is your father, have you?
HERCULES
I will.
IOLAUS/JASON
And that would be?
HERCULES
When the time is right.

Iolaus and Jason roll their eyes: 'That's good, that'll work.'

EXT. ACADEMY - GROUNDS - LATER

Hercules leads the Amazons on a guided tour of the Academy.

CYANE
Are they kicking a pig's bladder?

Iolaus, Jason, Lilith, and several CADETS form two teams engaged in an early version of soccer using a water-filled PIG's BLADDER.

HERCULES
Filled with water. It's one of Cheiron's foot drills.

Iolaus and Jason, shirtless, sweaty and panting, approach.

JASON
Care to give it a try? A little co-ed competition?
HERCULES
Ah, guys, I'm not so sure it's a good idea.
IOLAUS
C'mon. Girls against the guys.
CYANE
(nodding towards Lilith)
Is she one of the guys?
IOLAUS
Lilith? She's, uh --
LILITH
(tough competitor)
A cadet. Let's play.

WIPE TO:

EXT. ACADEMY - GROUNDS - A MOMENT LATER

Hercules displays dazzling footwork as he dribbles past several Amazons. CRUNCH. Cyane wipes him out with a vigorous body check. He looks up, a bit woozy. Staring down at him is Cyane.

CYANE
Is this how it is played?

She dribbles off with the pig's bladder.

HERCULES
(shouts)
You're not playing by the rules.
CYANE
(over her shoulder)
What rules?

CRUNCH. It's Cyane's turn to be wiped out. Shocked, she looks up from the ground at Lilith! She dribbles off.

CYANE
(calling)
Excellent move. Worthy of an Amazon.

Intense action: The Amazons, playing hard, knock the cadets reeling as they work the pig's bladder towards Iolaus defending the "goal" between the two spears. Cyane breaks free. She delivers a mighty kick that sends the ball sailing toward Iolaus. SPLOOSH. The bladder knocks him off his feet as it explodes into a shower of water. Herc rushes over to Iolaus and Cyane. As the rest of the cadets pick themselves up off the ground, Herc picks REMNANTS of the bladder off the prone, soaked Iolaus.

IOLAUS
(rubbing his chest)
Let's call it a scoreless tie.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. ACADEMY - GYMNASIUM - DAY

CLOSE ON - A javelin. As Lilith's hand reaches in to pick it up, another hand (Jason's) grabs it instead.

JASON
Here. Let me help you with that.

Lilith takes the javelin from Jason, eyeing him, annoyed, but in control.

LILITH
(pointed)
You going to throw it for me, too?
JASON
(not getting it)
Uh, no. Of course not.

Lilith raises the javelin and gives it a heave. The javelin nails the target with authority (not perfect, but a very nice throw). Jason is impressed. Lilith smiles.

LILITH
I'll let you know next time I feel a wave of helplessness coming on.
JASON
(smiles, charming in defeat)
I look forward to it.

Jason exits. Lilith looks after him, shaking her head and sighing with frustration. Men... A beat, then Cyane enters.

CYANE
Have you seen Hercules?
LILITH
No. Care to join me in our javelin drill?

Lilith picks up a javelin and sends it flying through a series of hanging rings toward the bull's-eye across the room. Cyane chooses a javelin, tests its weight, then throws. It splits Lilith's.

CYANE
Why do you train with boys?
LILITH
I wanted to be a warrior. There was no academy for women. So came here to the best. It's just been a little hard fitting in.

Lilith swings several of the rings, then makes the tough shot.

CYANE
An Amazon warrior takes pride in who she is, not how she fits in with others.

Cyane swings all the hoops... and hits the mark, very close to Hercules, who has just entered.

HERCULES
Hope I'm not interrupting.
CYANE
Hercules, I've been looking for you. I have something to tell you.
HERCULES
Good. I've been looking for you.
CYANE
Last night, Ares gave me a sign in my dreams. A land we can settle as our own. A days ride to the Northeast. So tonight there will be a big celebration.

Iolaus and Jason enter.

IOLAUS
Do I hear party? We're there.
CYANE
And for one cadet volunteer, it will be a very special evening.
IOLAUS
That would be me.

WIPE TO:

EXT. ACADEMY - GROUNDS - NIGHT

A BONFIRE rages. DRUMS pound out an INFECTIOUS RHYTHM. Herc and Jason approach Iolaus. He is painted in bright colors.

JASON
Guess you haven't found the right time to tell her, yet.
HERCULES
Not with you two butting in.

Jason and Herc finally notice Iolaus.

IOLAUS
Hey, check it out. They painted me to represent the male in the Amazon culture. Colorful...
HERCULES
and practically useless.
JASON
They couldn't have picked a better representative.

On one side of Iolaus and the bonfire, the Amazons begin their celebratory dance (BS&P: NOT AS SEXUAL AS ON "XENA"). On the other side, a line of awkward and shy cadets watch.

Cyane breaks from the ranks of the dancing Amazons. Hot and sweaty, she crosses no man's land to Hercules.

CYANE
Come. Dance with me.
HERCULES
I'm not really a dancer... I'm more of a fighter.
CYANE
You don't want to fight me. You'll lose.

She laughs, pulls the reluctant Hercules into the dance. One-by-one the other cadets join in. Iolaus approaches an AMAZON.

IOLAUS
Hi. I'm Iolaus. What's your sign?
AMAZON
(clear rebuff)
'No Trespassing.'

She walks off as Jason steps up.

JASON
He shoots, he misses.
IOLAUS
You should talk. I don't see you with anybody.
JASON
(smiles, in jest)
That's because they're Amazons. If they were any other women, they'd be wild about me.

Iolaus looks over at Hercules.

IOLAUS
Herc's doing okay.

Hercules and Cyane walk away from the dance. Hand in hand --

EXT. ACADEMY - GROUNDS NEAR GYM - NIGHT

-- in the b.g. the dancing builds to a fever pitch.

HERCULES
(struggling)
There's something I've been wanting to say to you. Before you leave.
CYANE
(smiles)
Go ahead. You don't have to be shy with me.
HERCULES
Okay... Zeus is my father.
CYANE
(punching him, playfully)
Very funny. You know how I hate Zeus.
HERCULES
I tried to tell you.

Cyane yanks her hand away.

CYANE
You're not kidding.
(stunned)
What part of your father's plot is this?!
HERCULES
But I'm not like him!
CYANE
I don't believe you!

Hercules watches helplessly as Cyane stomps off towards the nearby door to the gym. Jason and Iolaus join him (from another direction).

IOLAUS
Looks like the honeymoon's over.
JASON
(consoling)
You had to tell her, Herc. She'd have found out.

Suddenly, Cyane cries out an ANGRY STARTLED CRY, then:

CYANE (O.S.)
(furious, imperious)
How dare you!

Hercules reacts, worried, and starts toward the gym. A beat, then Iolaus and Jason follow.

HERCULES
Cyane!

INT. GYMNASIUM - CONTINUOUS

Cyane trapped under a CARGO NET surrounded by IMPERIAL GUARDS. Hercules bursts in.

HERCULES
Hey, what's going on?

THESEUS steps out of the shadows.

THESEUS
I'm Theseus, the King of Athens. That woman belongs to me.

FADE OUT.

Act Two

FADE IN:

INT. ACADEMY - GYMNASIUM - A MOMENT LATER

The Amazons and Cadets, responding to Cyane's scream, rush inside to find Cyane trapped under a net and Herc held at bay. A skirmish breaks out between the Amazons and the Guards. The archers draw their bows. The troops brandish their weapons.

THESEUS
Hold it right there!

Iolaus and Jason step to the front.

JASON
Theseus!
THESEUS
Jason, my old friend!

Jason and Theseus embrace enthusiastically. Everyone's stunned. Skirmishes stop. Iolaus frowns, to Hercules:

IOLAUS
Did I miss something?

Jason pulls Theseus over to Hercules.

JASON
Theseus, this is Hercules, the best fighter in the academy.
HERCULES
We met.

Iolaus butts in, extending his hand to Theseus.

IOLAUS
(sarcastically)
I'm Iolaus, Hercules' old friend.
THESEUS
(re: Jason)
So, Jason, how the heck are you?
JASON
I'd be better if you didn't have that woman stuck in a net.
THESEUS
Don't be concerned. It's a minor matter. They're runaway slaves.

Cyane throws off the net.

CYANE
We belong to no one!
HERCULES
They were tricked. Captured by Zared and his pack of slavers.

The Amazons ready their weapons. Theseus' Guards raise their weapons. Cyane glares at Herc.

CYANE
I have Zeus to thank for this!

Cheiron makes his way to Theseus, Jason and Hercules.

CHEIRON
You are forgetting, Theseus, that as guests, the Amazons are under the protection of the Academy.
THESEUS
Ah, you must be Cheiron. Your reputation for bravery and wisdom is well known. Don't get involved in this. If you do, I would be forced to destroy your Academy.
IOLAUS
You and what army?
THESEUS
My army. They are only a day's march behind.
CHEIRON
(standing firm)
They too are welcome... as guests.
HERCULES
Wait. This is all my fault. I invited Cyane here.
THESEUS
Good. Then you can un-invite them and the matter is settled.
IOLAUS
Herc, you can't let them take the Amazons. Nobody should be someone else's property.
HERCULES
I know.
JASON
Theseus has a contract. In the eyes of the law, he is right.
HERCULES
I know.
CYANE
But the law is wrong.
HERCULES
I know.
CHEIRON
Allow us twenty-four hours to offer a reply.

Theseus's men draw their weapons. The Amazons draw theirs. Theseus looks between the two groups, then turns to Cheiron.

THESEUS
Fine. Twenty-four hours.
(hardens)
But it will do you no good.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. KORA'S INN - NIGHT

Packed and rowdy. Jason, half-loaded down with scrolls, approaches Herc seated at a table.

JASON
We brought the scrolls you asked for.
IOLAUS (O.S.)
We?!

Iolaus enters, comically overloaded with scrolls, and struggles, dropping one or two, to make his way to the table.

HERCULES
Is that all there was about Combat by Champion?

Iolaus dumps his load, more or less on Herc's table.

IOLAUS
Isn't that enough? There's gotta be something in there to use against
(nasty)
Jason's 'old buddy.'
JASON
It may be wrong, Iolaus, but the law's on his side! You can't just ignore the law.
IOLAUS
Just watch me!
HERCULES
Knock it off! I'll need both of you if this is gonna have any chance to work.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. ACADEMY - GYMNASIUM - MORNING

Everyone is assembled. Herc stands in the middle.

HERCULES
I have a solution.
(to Theseus)

You're right, when you say I should obey the law.

(to Cyane)
And you're right when you say slavery is wrong. Therefore, a fair solution is the tradition of champions.
THESEUS
Sounds fair to me.
CYANE
Fair?
(referring to Hercules)
Why should I trust him to be fair?
THESEUS
If a king can trust a stranger's word, a queen should do no less.
HERCULES
The combat between the champions will be a test of skill in the ropes. The first to knock the other to the ground is the winner. If it is Theseus' champion, the Amazons will become his servants. If it's Cyane's champion, the Amazons go free.
CYANE
I don't need a champion! The Queen of the Telaquir Amazons fights her own battles.
HERCULES
Theseus?

Jason nudges Theseus.

THESEUS
Yes, I'd like a champion. I choose... you, Hercules.
HERCULES
(acting surprised)
Me?! As your champion?
THESEUS
You wanted the Rules of Champions. By the way, you know if you lose, you will serve me in place of the Amazons. That's how it works.
LILITH
(worried, aside to Jason)
Can he do that?
JASON
(aside to Lilith)
Don't worry! Herc knows what he's doing... I hope.
HERCULES
If we're all agreed, then I'm ready to start.
CYANE
I warned you. You don't want to fight me. You'll lose.

Cyane and Hercules climb up the ropes, carrying padded staffs. Then...

CHEIRON
Begin!

A real acrobatic display. They leap from rope to rope. Bump each other. Kicks. Shaking ropes. Slash and dodge. Thrust and parry. Lilith watches, amazed at the action.

LILITH
(to Jason)
Cyane is an incredible warrior.
JASON
(grimacing, worried)
I've noticed.

Then, high on the ropes, Herc gets a momentary advantage, raises his staff to knock Cyane flying, but pauses. With a WAR CRY, Cyane lunges, legs first, and gets Herc in a scissors lock, legs around his chest.

CYANE
If you have no heart for battle, you should not have agreed to be champion!
HERCULES
(crushed/constricted)
It seemed like a good idea at the time. Aaa!

Cyane lets go of her rope, but keeps the leg lock on Herc. She tumbles down, and the sudden jerk of her weight yanks Herc from his rope.

Cyane flips and deftly grabs a rope.

Herc tumbles toward the ground and grabs another rope at the last second, swinging an inch from the floor, then back up on his rope.

Jason and Lilith continue to watch. Jason smiles at Herc's move.

JASON
(to Lilith)
Herc has a few moves left.

Frustrated, Cyane attacks with renewed fury.

Cyane has Herc almost beaten, when, in a flashy, impossible move, Herc turns the tables and sends Cyane to the floor. Theseus' Guards CHEER.

Jason pumps his fist in triumph as Lilith smiles.

JASON
All right!

The Amazons gather up their fallen leader.

THESEUS
Jason, you were right as always. He is a worthy champion. Well done, Hercules. Pack your things, ladies.

The Amazons brandish their weapons. Theseus' Guards unsheathe theirs. Hercules rushes between the two groups.

HERCULES
Just a minute, Theseus. You're forgetting something.
THESEUS
And that would be?
HERCULES
The Rules of Champions. I won. I get a reward.
THESEUS
(bristles)
Reward!? What are you talking about?
JASON
It's in the scroll, old buddy. Sorry about that.
HERCULES
Rules are rules.
THESEUS
(begrudgingly)
What do you want? Land? Money? A new wing on the academy?
HERCULES
Make slavery illegal in your city.
THESEUS
You can't ask for that! The Amazons will go free!
HERCULES
Read the law. I can ask for anything I want.
IOLAUS
(to Lilith)
Can he do that?

Jason moves to Theseus and claps him on the back.

JASON
(enjoying it)
It's like that one time your chariot beat mine. You told me great kings learn from their losses.
THESEUS
Today was an expensive lesson.
HERCULES
Instead of paying passage to that pirate, Zared; pay wages to good people willing to work.
THESEUS
Hmmm, wages? That has possibilities. Then I could tax them.
THESEUS
(off Hercules dirty look)
Not too much, of course... I'm liking this idea.
(clasping Herc's arm)
Agreed.

Iolaus pulls Jason aside.

IOLAUS
(weighing with his hands)
Cyane loses... but the Amazons get to go free.
JASON
Rules of Champions. Herc won, Theseus has to grant him a reward.
IOLAUS
Oh, I knew that. But what if Cyane would have won?
JASON
(dry, matter-of-fact)
I would have had to declare war on Athens.
IOLAUS
(impressed)
Oh.

EXT. ACADEMY - GROUNDS - DAY

Theseus, at the front of his Troops, talks to Jason.

THESEUS
Jason, it's been too long since your last visit.
JASON
Hermes' speed, Theseus.

Theseus takes his Imperial Guard and departs. Hercules walks over to Cyane as her Amazons gather up their belongings.

HERCULES
I suppose you're eager to settle your new lands?
CYANE
It's been a long, hard journey.

Lilith sashes out after the Amazons with her stuff.

LILITH
I'd like to join that journey, if you'll have me.
CYANE
Of course you are welcome.

Iolaus frowns to Jason:

IOLAUS
She just got here!
JASON
(shrugs)
Women. Go figure.

Cheiron clomps up to Lilith.

LILITH
Cheiron, I'm only sorry that my training with you will end.
CHEIRON
Every beginning comes at another beginning's end. May you find what you seek with the Amazons.

Lilith hugs Cheiron, then joins the Amazons.

CYANE
I never thought I would say this to a man, but you taught me a lesson, Hercules. Don't judge the son by the father.

Cheiron, Iolaus and Jason join Hercules.

HERCULES
I hope our paths will cross again.
CYANE
I do too.

Cyane turns and leads the Amazons from the Academy. Herc stays with Cheiron, Jason, and Iolaus.

IOLAUS
I learned something from all this.
HERCULES/JASON
You?
IOLAUS
Body paint's not all it's cracked up to be.

Lifts his shirt to reveal his body still painted. Cheiron shakes his head in resignation.

HERCULES/JASON
Iolaus!

As Jason and Hercules double over in laughter, Iolaus frowns and rubs a little at the paint as, we...

FADE OUT

THE END