Crossfire

HANK and EMMA, a young couple, sit on a blanket by a tree in an isolated section of a public park. Hank is rounding second with his eyes on home.

Emma: I think maybe we should take it easy.

Hank: Why?

Emma: You're going to make it very difficult for me to say no to you pretty soon, I don't think this is the place for...(He begins to slip a hand up her skirt) Oh, god...

Hank: Who cares if somebody sees us?

He unbuttons his pants, begins to lift her shirt over her head.

Emma: I just think we should be caref...oh shit, what was that?

She springs up.

Hank: What?

Emma: There's somebody over there.

Hank: Where?

Emma: Behind that tree.

Hank: Hey! Come on out, asshole, the show's over!

Emma: Hank...

Hank: Hey, fucker!

Emma: Hank, I think he's wearing a mask. Is that...oh, god...

A tall figure clothed entirely in black - head to toe, including mask and gloves - approaches them, a pistol at the end of his outstretched hand. On his chest, a cross in rifle sights in bold red.

Killer: Quiet, sinner!

Hank: Oh Jesus, you're...

Emma: It's the Corinthian Killer!

She goes to grab her shirt.

Killer: Leave it there, filth. Let yourself arrive upon our god in a manner as disgusting and shameful as you left his precious earth.

Hank: Please, you don't have to do this.

Emma: Oh my god, oh my god...I don't want to die...

Hank (to Emma): Shh, it's going to be okay, honey. (to the Killer) At least let her go.

Killer: So that she can continue her fornicating ways in the sweaty folds of another?

Hank: Hey, watch it!

Emma: Hank, what are you doing?

Hank: How dare you imply she's a whore!

Emma: Wait a minute...

Killer: You can't protect her anymore. Her sin is apparent in the eyes of our righteous creator.

Hank: What?

Emma: Why would that make me a whore?

Hank: This isn't the time...

Emma: You know we're not official or anything, right?

Killer: Prepare to look upon the judging face of a vengeful, punishing g-oh my god, it's you.

Another man dressed entirely in black, also holding a gun, has stepped out of the bushes. On his chest, also in red, is a crown of thorns that has been modified into a rifle sight.

Killer 2: What's going on here?

Killer 1: You're the Corinthian killer! Oh my god, I'm such a big fan of your work.

Hank: Hold on, I thought you were the--

Killer 1: Seriously, I cannot tell you what an influence you've been on me, both personally and professionally.

Killer 2: Wait a minute, I know you. You're that asshole that's been going around copycatting me!

Killer 1: Oh my goodness - you know my work?

Killer 2: Of course I do - you've been running around dressed like me for the last month and a half. Kind of hard not to notice.

Killer 1: I'm so flattered. I mean, I've been a fan of yours since the beginning. I've studied all of your murders. I've always had this desire, this need to kill, you know? I just didn't really know how to fulfill it. I knew I had something valuable to say about our relationship with the divine creator through the destruction of human life, I just never had a voice with which to express it. But then you came along, and it was like someone had reached into my brain, scooped out these violent urges, and enacted them a thousand times more effectively than I ever could. At first I hated you, but then I realized the truth - that you had been put here to guide me. To give me someone whose footsteps I could follow until I finally started to find my own way.

Killer 2: You killed that old married couple in the Appalachians last August, didn't you?

Killer 1: That was me.

Killer 2: Son of a bitch - you know they blamed that on me?

Killer 1: That was the greatest moment of my life. I can only hope you felt some of the same pride, knowing that your good work was carrying on.

Killer 2: Pride? I've never felt so ashamed in my whole life!

Killer 1: Ashamed? I don't understand...is it because I fulfilled your mission so much more successfully than you ever had?

Killer 2: Fulfilled my mission? See, that's my point - you killed an old married couple, don't you understand?

Killer 1: I sprang upon them as they committed the sin of physical love, just like you would have done.

Killer 2: Married, Marr-ied. M-A-R-R-I-E-D! It's not a sin if they're fucking married. I mean, look at your symbol.

Killer 1: What about it?

Killer 2: A cross in the cross hairs?

Killer 1: Cross hairs. I thought it was clever.

Killer 2: But it represents the opposite of what I'm going for! You would get that if you actually understood my work.

Hank: Maybe we should go...

They start to sneak away.

Killer 2: Down, sinners!

Killer 1: Hey, these are my victims - I found them first. (to Hank and Emma) Down, sinners!

Killer 2: Well, at least that means you're learning.

Hank: Look, I'm sorry, but if we're going to be killed, do you think he can do it?

He points to Killer 2.

Killer 1: Him? Why?

Emma: We'd rather be killed by the real guy.

Killer 1: Right...the real guy...

Killer 2: Look, there's no point in embarrassing yourself further. Just leave now, and let's forget this ever hap--

Killer 1 raises his gun and shoots Killer 2 three times in the chest. Emma screams.

Hank: Jesus Christ!

Killer 1 takes a step towards the body, looks down sadly at it, and then shoots him one more time. He takes a moment, then looks over at Hank.

Killer 1: I had to do that, right?

Hank: What?

Killer 1: He needed to go so that I could fully come into my own, yes?

Hank: Uh, sure...

Emma: Yes, yes of course he did...

Killer 1: You're not just saying that because you're afraid of me?

Hank: No.

Killer 1: Because you're not afraid of me...

Hank: No, that's not what I meant.

Emma: Of course we are.

Killer 1: Do you mean it?

Emma: Yes!

But he knows that they don't.

Police sirens in the distance.

- cs