Unring The Bell [COMPLETE]

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7 -USA Motel

DeShawn exits the motel room with a pair of luggage. He strides to the car.

Four MEN and two WOMEN agents of Chinese descent stroll to the room DeShawn exited. Several steps behind are Mr. Jinmai.

Shang wears a “strong woman” tee-shirt and holed jeans. She fixes her hair in the mirror. The door opens. She doesn’t glance.

SHANG

Shawn, you can use my card to pay for the room.

WU

That wouldn’t be wise.

Shock envelops Shang.

WU

The PRC might not approve the reimbursement for your... personal stay.

SHANG

Mr. Jinmai.

Wu sits in the chair.

WU

I vouched you were not a running dog. I was lucky to get a flight to bump into you. What a chance for us.

SHANG

A chance for what?

WU

I’m not talking about your American toy.

Shang stands rigid.

WU

He smells of your shampoo.

(pause)

It’s a tough job. We’re going to need your help.

DeShawn enters the room. Two agents seize him. He does not struggle.

DESHAWN

It’s not her fault. I am to blame.

WU

Oh, Mr. Harper. I’m not a racist. I don’t care what Ms. Mi does for her love life. It’s when it’s on the clock that grabs my attention.

Wu motions to an agent. The agent hands over a bag.

WU

Where are the two individuals that you observed?

Wu reaches into the bag. Shang and DeShawn are riveted by his motion.

SHANG

The African girl disappeared when the warlord militia attacked. The boy in Chicago vanished during the encounter with his father’s gang, seeking revenge.

Wu retrieves a deli sandwich.

WU

Please excuse me. Overseas flights have cut down on in-flight meals.

Wu takes a bite.

WU

You told me that already. I’m here to get more information. Such as that, you were ordered to return home for debriefing. No flight itinerary was filed, so that perked a couple of eyes. are we hunting oddities or on vacation?

Shang peeks at DeShawn.

SHANG

I’m sorry, sir. It was a mistake.

WU

I don’t think so. However, second chances are given to juniors.

SHANG

What about him?

She nods toward DeShawn. His eyes take in the room.

WU

His government has him on leave.

DESHAWN

How did --

WU

Mr. Harper. Our two governments may be neighbors arguing over tree branches in each other’s yards, but we have roots in one another’s yards.

DESHAWN

As her handler--

WU

Her supervisor.

DESHAWN

As her supervisor, it was not all her fault.

WU

I do not need to explain, but for an American loving the Asian persuasion. She used her assets to her advantage in a way not to threaten your fragile male ego. Which is smart.

Shang shakes her head in a slight no for DeShawn to behold her truth.

WU

We must see to the future Ms. Mi. What do you believe is the subsequent resolution we must take?

SHANG

I will accompany you home.

Wu takes another bite of the sandwich.

WU

I’m in town to speak to some people that I owe an engagement too.

DeShawn’s eyes go to Wu, then hunt Shang for insight. She nods about what you’d expect. He smiles, of course.

DESHAWN

Sir. Sometimes, we have strange terms on agreements.

WU

Mr. Harper. You don’t know how dangerous the game is. You don’t know what you’re doing.

DESHAWN

I don’t think you understand either. Shang and I witnessed a man out of a movie pull an honest to god Magento X-Men stunt. That’s not by any scientific law or human nature.

Wu takes another bite. An agent hands him a cup of water.

WU

Violating the laws of nature, physics, and man. The trifecta that harbors a threat.

DESHAWN

Shang can handle it.

Shang’s pupils dilate. A prideful grin sits on her lips.

WU

That is why I have come. You do not know who these individuals are, except for name and description.

SHANG

I might know where they have gone.

Wu looks interested.

SHANG

Each one was born in hostile locations. Both left when they were attacked.

WU

Information is already known.

SHANG

Sir. They created an oasis amid the turmoil. If we search other hot spots that have one like that, this is where they have gone.

WU

That would take time. We don’t have that currency.

SHANG

No. But Mr. Harper can use his resources to find the turtles from their shells.

Wu finishes his sandwich. He contemplates.

WU

Mr. Harper. Considering Shang having the first-hand experience with these individuals and the obvious fact she is infatuated with you, right now, I need to know. It’s not simple curiosity. Can you do as she says?

A fire ignites in his eyes.

DESHAWN

For her, I would do all she asks and more.

DeShawn’s eyes shift to something primal. Her chest heaves as she feels like a goddess.

Wu gauges his agents. He ponders a moment.

WU

Alright. Ms. Mi. You have seventy-two hours to find them and report to me. We must not allow the wrong powers that be to get them. Nor can we allow them to operate freely. Imagine that type of ability in cities, an airplane, or in a federal building.

Shang bows in acceptance. The agents release DeShawn.

WU

Don’t make me wrong.

Wu and the agents depart.

DESHAWN

I hope I didn’t --

Shang bounds over to him. Purest bliss covers her expression when she kisses DeShawn. He places his hands on her hips. She melts into him. The kiss is a pure, universal need.

SHANG

I love you, too.

DESHAWN

Where do we start?

Shang opens the window drapes.

SHANG

Yin to yang.

DESHAWN

I don’t follow.

SHANG

Well, think about it. You said it yourself. There might be more like them. Instead of hunting for two needles, we find the thread.

DeShawn sits in the chair.

DESHAWN

Do you mean what do the two have in common?

SHANG

Right. What if they appear in the worst hellholes on the planet?

DESHAWN

That’s a lot. Wars, crime, corruption. You name the sin and I can randomly throw a pin at a globe and we’ll find it there.

SHANG

Not necessarily. The intel I was given was for these two. Each on one continent. One location.

DESHAWN

America and Africa.

SHANG

Exactly.

DESHAWN

Okay. Now you have to tell me what went down in Africa.

SHANG

I can’t.

DESHAWN

Your boss said you yes.

SHANG

No. I can’t because it was so bad.

DESHAWN

Sha’, we’re a team. I can handle the truth.

She sighs and faces plants into her palms.

SHANG

She was a young woman. Gorgeous. Her eyes were like cherry wood and her hair green like pine needles. She’s breathtaking.

DESHAWN

What about what she can do?

SHANG

She can manipulate wood, trees, plants.

DESHAWN

Oh great. Poison Ivy with The Swamp Thing’s power. That’s not horrifying at all.

SHANG

Who is Swamp Thing?

DESHAWN

You’re kidding, right? In the comics, he’s like one of the most powerful beings on the planet. He uses the elemental force that connects all plant life and ecosystems.

SHANG

Yep. Sounds like Eywa from Avatar.

DESHAWN

That giant tree?

SHANG

Yeah. Where both flora and fauna – are connected by a neural network and can be tapped into by the locals.

DESHAWN

Exactly!

(pause)

So, this woman can do that?

Shang has a faraway expression.

SHANG

She desiccated her father who raped her mother. He was a militia general that was popular with the warlords. They came for revenge. She Godzilla’d them and vanished.

DeShawn shakes his head.

DESHAWN

Day-um. We got a Magneto and a Swamp Thing. How the hell do we find people like them?

SHANG

I believe we can regard those areas that have the worst crisis. Yemen, Syria, and powder kegs.

DESHAWN

That’s still a lot. Afghanistan is layered with caves and strongholds. How do we narrow the search?

SHANG

Seven continents. We ticked off North America and Africa. What about South America or Canada?

DESHAWN

Canada is part of the North American continent. Too much wilderness. Same with jungles in the South. What about Europe or Asia?

SHANG

Hmm. Europe? Eastern region?

They take notes on the motel scratch paper.

DESHAWN

Russia is too big.

SHANG

Pretty settled down. Think of the most dangerous places. Not just murder and crime. Poverty. Daily life or death on all sides.

DeShawn uses his phone.

DESHAWN

Hmm. Bulgaria.

SHANG

Bulgaria?

DESHAWN

Yeah. Like Chicago. Ghetto and death. It says here, Oldest Gypsy district in Bulgaria. Third world. Disease rampant, high pollution. Communist-era living with shanties in between. No running water and an ocean of trash.

(pause)

Come here.

She peers over his shoulder.

DESHAWN

Do you want an aisle or window?

Shang smiles.

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