MAGNUM, P.I. / DEPENDABLE HORSES

Brian S. Wheeler

November, 26th, 2013

Universal/NBC owns all characters. No copyright infringement intended.

TEASER

EXT. - HAWAIIAN RACEWAY / OVAL TRACK - EARLY MORNING

The camera fades into its first shot. Placed low upon the ground, the camera centers upon the rapidly-approaching red sports car. The car is oddly quiet as it quickly rolls over the camera. The camera agains shifts, now showing an overhead view of the sports car racing around an oval track. The Higgins Foundation seal is painted upon its hood. The empty stands in the background flash by in a blur as the camera remains focussed on the speeding car.

The camera pans after the car makes another pass to show THEODORE CALVIN (T.C.) and his ten-year old grandson MARKUS CALVIN cheering as the red sports car blurs past them. Several people are seen focussed on the car's progress, chatting into headsets, or peeking at tablet computer screens. A man from this group (JACOB FRANKLIN) walks forward to stand at T.C.'s side.

JACOB

His split was right on the money. It's going to be close, but I think he might just do it.

T.C.

If anyone can push that car to the pace, it's Bryant. No one knows that car like he does.

MARKUS

He's flat-out today.

T.C.

Yeah he is. He's got that car just purring. You can hardly hear that electric rocket on wheels whizzing right on by.

JACOB

The foundation was lucky to find Bryant. We didn't think the perfect blend of driver and mechanic would be so close to us right on the islands. But Lily knew. It didn't take her but a minute to give us Bryant's name.

MARKUS

And you should see dad fly the helicopters. Only grandpa flies the whirly-birds better than dad.

T.C.

It happens when you raise a teenager in the middle of a helicopter hangar. Too many parts and too many engines.

The red car roars passed. Jacob peeks at his tablet computer and grins.

JACOB

He's got it if he keeps this pace. One more lap. This time is just what we need to turn heads. Let the industry know you don't need a combustible engine to go so fast.

T.C.

That boy sure worked for it.

JACOB

He's coming wide out of turn two.

T.C.

Looks like he's just hit marbles. Hold on, Bryant. Hold on.

The camera pans onto the red car. It's rear fishtails to the sound of screeching tires before the car spins out of the turn. Its driver loses control, and after spinning for several turns, the car slams hard, hood-first, into the retaining wall.

MARKUS

DAD!

T.C. pulls Markus' head into his chest.

T.C.

Hold on, Bryant. Lord, hold on.

The camera shifts to show the emergency truck arriving at the crash scene. Medics run to the side of the red car, carving at the door with their hydraulic jaw-cutters as they race to reach the driver.

The camera pans upward into the crowd before focussing in on a brunette woman seated in one of the race stadium's upper rows. The woman holds a camera to her eye, and there's the sound of a shutter snapping photos before the scene fades out with the sounds of sirens arriving in the background.

INT. - ROBIN'S NEST / STUDY - LATE MORNING

THOMAS MAGNUM sits behind Higgins' old desk. The Underwood typewriter is set on the table behind him. Thomas whistles as he polishes the lens to one of his favorite SLR cameras. He toys with the settings, loads a roll a film. Thomas whistles, and the German shepherd dog Hansel - seated to his right - looks up and almost smiles as Thomas snaps a photo.

DALTON BOOKER walks into the study wearing Cardinals baseball cap.

DALTON

There you are, Hansel. Should've know you'd be in here with Magnum.

THOMAS

I'm sorry, Booker. I shouldn't have fed them those cheese and crackers the other night. I could never do that with the old lads, and I just wasn't thinking.

DALTON

Oh, they also just take to you. And Hansel's not feeling up to going through the training paces this morning.

Hansel lowers on the floor and cups his head into his paws.

THOMAS

I got the camera all ready for you. I think picking up photography is a great idea. Been thinking I might take it up again myself.

DALTON

Higgins says a camera helped him with his nightmares as much as anything else did.

THOMAS

The majordomo never hesitated to expose film to the light. Where you thinking about going for some shots? Waimea Botanical Gardens might be a great start.

DALTON

Tell me that's not a film canister on the desk.

THOMAS

Of course it is.

DALTON

The estate doesn't have a digital camera?

THOMAS

Well, maybe. I don't know. But you don't want to learn on a digital camera. You want to learn on this. Aperture. Shutter speed. Maybe even film developing.

DALTON

I was thinking a digital camera would just have an auto picture button or something.

THOMAS

That's not photography. Certainly not he hobby Higgins was talking about. You don't want to be a hack, anyway. You want to be an artist, and this camera here can show you how.

DALTON

Can you even develop film anymore?

THOMAS

Of course you can.

The men do not notice as LILY MAGNUM enters the study. She carries a bright red digital, SLR camera over her shoulder. She takes a moment to listen to Thomas and Dalton bicker before handing Dalton the red camera.

LILY

Gentlemen, I give you the best of both worlds. Dad, you can teach Dalton all about f-stops and depth of field. Dalton, no developing in dad's ancient darkroom. Instant results with the click of a button.

The camera instantly absorbs Dalton's attention as he fidgets with the device.

THOMAS

Still no way to develop artistry, Lily.

LILY

Well, wish I had the time to debate it. I'm afraid I bring bad news for the foundation.

THOMAS

Something go wrong at the time trial?

LILY

Bryant crashed into the wall. T.C. says the car looked to go loose on him.

THOMAS

Is he alright?

LILY

Broken leg. A couple cracked ribs. He'll recover. But even if we could put the electric prototype back together in time, Bryant won't be able to challenge the track record with the electric engine. Without some kind of publicity, fundraising's going to get a lot harder.

THOMAS

How's T.C.?

LILY

Angry. Claims there was negligence on part of the track. It's getting looked in to. But I have an idea. A way to get back in the spotlight again. Help feature the electric engine and keep fundraising moving.

THOMAS

That's why Higgins wanted you to head his foundation.

LILY

I want to drop the electric engine into the old Ferrari.

THOMAS

No.

LILY

It belongs to the foundation.

THOMAS

You wouldn't be so cruel to your father.

LILY

I would. If that would put that Ferrari to good use. If doing so would promote the foundation's efforts to diversify vehicle fuel options.

THOMAS

Get another car. Not the Ferrari. No reason to tinker with the dependable horsepower under the hood.

LILY

I wonder how sure you are of that. When was the last time you drove it, and what do you know about engines?

THOMAS

I drove that car for close to ten years.

LILY

Doesn't make you its owner, or a mechanic.

THOMAS

I don't know if I can suffer much more than this. This is a time when there's nothing at all wrong with a classic car that runs on a classic tank of gas. Hansel, come with me.

LILY

What are you doing?

THOMAS

I don't know. Maybe we'll visit the shrubs.

Thomas rises from the desk and pulls out a tennis ball he has kept in the pocket of his khakis. He tosses it to Hansel, who catches it with a jump and snatch. Together, they leave the study. Lily frowns. Dalton aims the camera, and takes a picture of a very annoyed Lily.

INT. - RICK'S BEACH RESORT / CONFERENCE & BALLROOM - NIGHT

The scene opens to a ballroom crowded with dancers swaying together with music. As several pairs of dancers twirl out of the camera's frame, a set of some dozen, large sketches behind a long table comes into view. A tall, hotel tower constructed with shining glass and steel is sketched on each panel, each canvas showing the hotel resort tower from a different viewpoint. The surrounding geography and neighboring buildings remain in black and white and fade into the background. The words "Baylor Group" are printed in large serif font across the bottom of each piece.

RICK WRIGHT, dressed in a white dinner jacket, walks along the table with a plate of hors d'oeuvre. A man in a black tuxedo, WILSON BAYLOR, approaches Rick and shakes Rick's hand.]

WILSON

So, what do you think, Rick? Think that tower has a chance of standing one day?

RICK

I hate to have to imagine it. A building like that would sure squeeze my operation. A lot of rooms could fit in a building like that. A lot of rooms with a lot of amenities.

WILSON

Don't mistake my intentions. I'm in the construction business. I don't know anything about the hotel and restaurant racket. That's why I've assembled all of you here tonight. I just want to build it with someone else's money, and I'm hoping the prime rib tonight helps me get it.

RICK

Judging the crowd, I think you have a real chance.

WILSON

But what's your opinion? You're possibly the island's premier resort player. Think I could entice you to put your gold into this project? I can see your face reflected in all of that tower's glass.

RICK

You have all the numbers on paper. But there's one thing you're not telling me. Not telling us.

WILSON

And that's where this tower's going to be.

RICK

Bingo. Unless you know something I don't, I can't think of any place this tower might plan on standing. Like they say, Wilson, it's just that folks aren't making land the way they used to.

WILSON

It's only a matter of paperwork before we can announce it. I assure you, Rick, it'll be a prime spot.

RICK

Make sure you let me know. I've been squinting at all the buildings in the background trying to figure it out. I might think about playing if I knew where this tower was going to drop. Excuse me, Wilson, but my wife Cleo's calling me to join her on the dance floor.

A brunette woman (SARAH EVANS) in a sequined, red dress glides to Wilson's side as Rick joins Cleo and begins dancing in the crowd.

SARAH

Is Mr. Wright biting?

WILSON

Maybe.

SARAH

Is anyone else?

WILSON

Maybe.

SARAH

We've already invested plenty in this. We've got too many things lined up for me to keep taking "maybe" for an answer.

WILSON

What's new with the Hemphills?

SARAH

They're feeling the heat.

WILSON

But they're not yet on fire?

SARAH

Oh, they're about to combust at any time.

WILSON

The sooner the better. You know, it might be a good time to refresh our presentation material after the interest shown to us tonight. You should go over to the track tomorrow afternoon with the camera, when all this Hawaiian light is just right. Get us more pics. Try to capture a bit of the sky.

SARAH

And I won't forget to twist the screws.

WILSON

One day closer to the comfort, Sarah. One day closer.

EXT. - ROBIN'S NEST - FRONT OF ESTATE / NEAR GARAGE - DAYBREAK

The camera opens upon the front of the classic, red Ferrari. Thomas Magnum wears his trademark, hawaiian floral shirt, dark sunglasses and Tigers cap for the first time in season nine as he pushes the car further down the drive until it is next to the estate's new, black Audi. Thomas' narration begins as he jumps the Ferrar's battery off of the Audi and siphons gas through a hose from the Audi's tank.

The narration continues as the camera follows overhead as Thomas drives his Ferrari across Hawaiian highways. The narrations ends as Thomas pulls up to a stoplight's red stoplight, where a car full of teenagers is waiting for the light to turn.

THOMAS NARRATION

A person might think it foolish for a man pushing the age I'm pushing to sneak around his own home at dawn, acting as if he's seventeen and is about to sneak out in the family car. Siphoning gas for the Ferrari from the Audi certainly reminded me of my days battling over estate resources with Higgins, but I hadn't done much anything foolish for a long time.

Truth might have been that I was starting to worry that I had forgotten how to do something silly, and sneaky and fun. Lily was right. There hadn't been any excuse at all to keep the Ferrari parked away for so long. There just came a sunny afternoon where I had thought of taking it for another drive along the coast, and suddenly decided not to take her out for fear a rock might crack the windshield. That's a sad way to treat a car, or a person.

So that morning, I just wanted to be foolish and hear that Ferrari rumble another time. Watch the sunrise from the front seat of a fine, if old, piece of automotive craftsmanship. She coughed and hacked a bit, but with a little prodding, the Ferrari got rumbling well enough, and the two of us went back down that drive as the same, best of friends.

We were both older. But we both remained strong. Dependable. And I couldn't remember the last time the Hawaiian sunrise looked so good.

But a person could be right. I might just have been acting foolish.

A car brimming with high school boys pulls up at a stoplight next to Magnum. The boys do not look particularly menacing at all. Music thumps out of their window. The driver turns, sees Magnum's car and rolls down his window. Magnum appears to enjoy the attention.

TEENAGER 1

Hey, that's an awesome car!

THOMAS

She's not bad is she?

A second teenager cranes his neck from the passenger seat.

TEENAGER 2

Is it from a museum?

THOMAS

It is not from a museum.

A third teenager rolls down a back window to join the conversation at the red light.

TEENAGER 3

That's a kit car. That's not a real Ferrari. A Ferrari like that wouldn't still be around.

THOMAS

Listen, it's no kit car.

The fourth, and final, teenager in the car yells from the backseat.

TEENAGER 4

Look at that shirt. Are you a tourist?

THOMAS

I am not a tourist! This is not a kit car! We are not so old that we belong in a museum!

The light changes to green. Thomas peeks both ways and accelerates through the intersection. The Ferrari revs. It churns several blocks down the road before their is a pop, and a puff of smoke, and the engine freezes up on Thomas with a terrible grinding noise. Thomas wrestles the Ferrari to the side of the road as smoke billows from the hood. The teenagers pull up alongside. They appear legitimately concerned for the man stranded in the strange car on the side of the road.

TEENAGER 2

You alright?

THOMAS

Oh, afraid I've cracked this car and my ego. Any of you boys mind if I might borrow a cellphone?

All four of the teenagers offer their smartphones to Thomas.

EXT. - HAWAIIAN RACEWAY - GARAGE AREA - AFTERNOON

The camera is centered upon the Ferrari as it is towed to the front of a waiting garage. Thomas, Dalton (red digital camera slung over his shoulder) and Lily walk towards the garage, passing a strange gathering of vehicles along the way that all date back thirty years ago - a 1984 Chevrolet Corvette C4, 1984 Ford Thunderbird, 1984 Dodge Daytona Thunderbird (or similar such models). Thomas looks at Lily and shakes his head.

THOMAS

What are you planning, Lily?

LILY

I only did what you and Higgins taught me to do.

THOMAS

What's that?

LILY

Always have a back-up plan.

Sarah Evans emerges from a neighboring garage, waving as she approaches Lily. The women shake hands.

SARAH

Pardon me, Ms. Magnum, but I hope you don't mind me strolling over to introduce myself. Sarah Evan. Wanted to tell you how excited all of us at the Baylor Group were to hear your idea. You know, that's none other than Wilson Baylor's Porsche being fitted with one of the electric engines now.

LILY

The pleasure is mine, Ms. Evans. The foundation is honored that Mr. Baylor has offered his vehicle for the time trials.

SARAH

Oh, don't think him too much of a philanthropist. That car's always been Mr. Baylor's pride and joy. Says it was the car he dreamed of driving when he first starting the Baylor Group forty years ago. He wouldn't pass up any chance to show it off.

THOMAS

Show off is one thing, but you're about to place an entirely new heart beneath the hood.

SARAH

I wouldn't say that's how we look at it. We think it's a grand idea. Putting new engines in old frames. Give them a little more life. Save these vehicles from the junk yard, and promote innovation all at the same time.

THOMAS

A lot of these cars might not have needed the junkyard.

LILY

The foundation agrees with you, Ms. Evans, and we thank you for your sponsorship, and for such a beautiful car.

Thomas makes a sour face a moment before T.C. emerges from an office doorway. He shakes hands with a man (LYLE HEMPHILL) and a woman (CAROL HEMPHILL) who follow him, and upon seeing Thomas staring at his Ferrari, waves his friend over.

T.C.

Thomas! Just the man I wanted to talk to!

LYLE

We apologize once more, Mr. Calvin. I hope we'll convince you how we're doing everything in our power to keep this track in peek condition.

T.C.

I understand. I understand it's not easy starting a new enterprise like this one. Even a driver as good as Bryant can't eliminate all the risk.

CAROL

It's just that our luck's been so horrible. We've had three other accidents on this track in last two months.

LYLE

It's alright, hun. Mr. Calvin doesn't need to hear all of it.

Carol appears on the verge of breaking into tears as Thomas strides up to the group, Lily and Dalton slowly following him.

T.C.

Thomas, this is Carol and Lyle Hemphill. They purchased this track a year ago, and they're busting their rears to renovate the oval back to its glory. They've been real good to Bryant and the foundation's car out here.

Thomas

Have we learned any more about what might've caused Bryant's accident?

T.C.

We're still looking in to it. But the Bryant's garage boys have ruled out the track had anything to do with it. In fact, Thomas, the boys were telling me they would sure appreciate it if you came by and gave them your thoughts.

Lily snickers. But Dalton senses something in T.C.'s request and gently grips Lily's wrist, a gesture which turns Lily attentive and quiet. Thomas winks.

THOMAS

I'd be happy to help the boys. Mrs. Hemphill, I heard you mention you've had a terrible string of bad luck as of late. How's that affecting your efforts to give this track new life?

LYLE

It's why we have insurance. Only bumps in the road.

THOMAS

Yeah, that insurance can get real pricey, real fast, though.

Sarah Evans edges between Dalton and Lily.

SARAH

Mrs. Hemphill, I was hoping you wouldn't mind if I strolled the track a bit. It's a wonderful afternoon sky, and I thought I might capture some pics.

CAROL

By all means.

LYLE

Would you consider perhaps sharing some shots with us? We can use every good photo we can get for our marketing.

SARAH

I would be thrilled to share whatever I might get. It feels great, knowing that Mr. Baylor's precious Porsche is in good hands.

DALTON

Excuse me, Ms.?

SARAH

Sarah Evans, and you would be?

DALTON

Dalton Booker. Friends call me Booker. I was hoping you wouldn't mind if a tag along while you took your photos. I've got a new camera myself, and I don't know a thing about working it. Thought you might show me a few pointers.

SARAH

I'd enjoy your company, Booker.

Dalton and Sarah walk towards the stadium entrance. The Hemphills smile and return to their office. T.C. nods Thomas and Lily to follow him into the garage Bryant and his team have been renting throughout work on the car.

T.C.

Thomas, someone sabotaged Bryant's trial.

LILY

Are you sure T.C.?

T.C.

Yeah, the boys have been over every inch of that wrecked car hoping to find another reason. But that steering rod snapped, and the boys can't think how that might've happened unless someone went about doing it intentionally.

THOMAS

You think they might've been after Bryant?

T.C.

Bryant can't think of anyone who would want to hurt him like that.

LILY

Bryant was driving for the foundation. Someone's looking to sabotage the trials

THOMAS

We can't know that yet, Lily.

T.C.

But it's enough to look into.

THOMAS

Yeah. I'm on it, T.C. Let me see if there's anything for me to dig up.

T.C.

It's Bryant, Thomas.

THOMAS

I know.

T.C. taps Thomas on the shoulder and walks towards his Island Hopper Van (new model, new graphics, but same colors). The camera pulls back revealing the older vehicles gathered in the lot as a group of mechanics whose boiler suits are all marked with the foundation's seal on the back, push the red Ferrari into the garage.

Thomas stands to watch them as he rubs his chin. He runs a hand through his hair and turns away.

LILY

It's only a car, dad.

THOMAS

I know.

INT. - RICK'S BEACH RESORT - EMPTY CONFERENCE / BALL ROOM - NIGHT

The camera opens upon Thomas, Dalton, T.C. and Rick seated around a green poker table set in the wide open of a the resort's vacant conference room.

Thomas, T.C. and Rick wear their lucky charms - Rick, a golden watch thirty years old that Ice Pick gave him one Christmas; T.C., an old Island Hoppers shirt faded and worn; Thomas, his lucky accountant's cap.

Dalton does not appear to wear any such charms. He is still dressed in his carpenter's pants and a simple t-shirt, the Cardinals baseball cap again on his head. A giant pile of poker chips stacks in front of him, while the stacks of his rivals dwindle.

THOMAS

I raise two dollars.

T.C.

Call.

RICK

I'm out. Hey, Booker. Let me look at those photos again.

DALTON

Call. Raise five.

T.C.

I'm out.

DALTON

Here you are, Rick. They look better on a nice big computer screen, but Thomas insisted we stop by a drug store and have them printed.

T.C.

Man, Rick, you've been ogling those pictures all night. Act like you've never seen a Hawaiian skyline before.

THOMAS.

Call. Raise you three dollars more. Oh, T.C., I don't think Dalton was really all that interested in the sky. I think he was more interested in the company. He looked like a puppy following that brunette around the track.

DALTON

Call. You're not enticing me into this pot, Magnum. I suggest you fold. Just thought I might learn something. Develop an eye.

T.C.

Sure you did. Develop an eye. That's another way of saying it.

Rick places another card on the river assembled on the table. Thomas sips at his Coops and slaps his cards on the table as Dalton gathers another pot.

RICK

There's something strange about these shots. Feels like I've seen them before. Hey, wait a minute.

Rick stands from the table and drifts to the bar as Dalton gathers the deck and begins shuffling the cards.

T.C.

Hey, Thomas, you have any thoughts about Bryant's accident?

DALTON

You guys thinking there's something going on?

THOMAS

Maybe.

T.C.

What about North Star Global? Doesn't it seem strange an oil giant like that's so involved with the foundation's electric car initiative?

THOMAS

Yeah, but that seems too obvious. And I looked at the sponsors and their contributions back at the estate. They've put a lot into their electric engine, and they have for a good time before the foundation's time trials. Maybe they really are trying to develop new product. That road just doesn't feel right.

Rick returns from the bar, delivering T.C. a new mug of coffee and a slapping a shiny brochure on the center of the poker table just as Dalton prepares to deal the cards.

RICK

I knew there was something familiar about Dalton's pictures.

Everyone leans towards the table, peering at Dalton's pictures and the glossy cover of Rick's brochure.

T.C.

What is it?

DALTON

Hey, that looks a lot like one of the vantage points I shot from today.

Thomas grabs the brochure and a couple of Dalton's photos and begins shuffling through the brochure.

THOMAS

All these skylines in the brochure match up with the skylines in Dalton's photos. Only there's this sketch of that glass resort tower drawn over the sky in the brochure pages.

RICK

Weird right?

T.C.

Too weird. Thomas?

THOMAS

Where'd you get this brochure, Rick?

RICK

From a pitch from the Baylor Group. Big construction firm on the islands for the last fifteen years. They rented the ballroom the other night. Fishing for investors.

DALTON

Any fish biting?

RICK

Not yet. They brought the right kind of bait, but they couldn't tell anyone where that big, glass tower was going to go.

DALTON

They've sponsored a car in the time trials.

T.C.

But what would be their interest be in an electric engine?

DALTON

Maybe they're not interested in the engine at all. I followed that brunette all over the raceway.

THOMAS

I think I know where you're heading, Dalton. Let me hear it, though.

DALTON

They're interested in the track itself.

RICK

No. Not the track. Not exactly. They're interested in those skylines. They're interested in that land.

THOMAS

Booker, I think you've just warmed the trail again.

T.C.

Deal them out, Booker. Don't care if you take the rest of my chips tonight. We're on it!

THOMAS

I know just where to go first thing in the morning.

The scene cuts away as T.C.'s poor poker face grimaces for a terrible hand of cards, which he instantly tosses onto the table. The rest of the crew smiles and as the camera shifts and focusses on the glimmering glass tower shining on the front of the slick brochure.

EXT. - HAWAIIAN RACEWAY - GARAGE AREA - NIGHT

Lily Magnum cuts off her headlights as she turns her car in the raceway's lane and drives to the locked front gate. Lily slips out of her car, and after removing a lock pick from the leather bag pulled from her pocket, she unlocks the gate. She silently slides the gate open before returning to her car and slowly driving to an open spot between two of the older vehicles awaiting a new electric engine.

She peeks and lurks about the grounds. Her clothing is dark. The following narration takes place as she searches through the garage areas of the raceway.

(Season 9 of Magnum, P.I. introduces a new take to the show's structure. Thomas Magnum will not be the only character who narrates through this season. Lily Magnum and Dalton Booker will also narrate from time to time. This technique will hopefully show how transitions are taking place in Thomas' life, how Lily and Dalton will increasingly play a more prominent role in investigations throughout the ninth season).

LILLY NARRATION

Higgins once tried to explain to me how time can indeed be, if not broken, frozen. Certain moments would always feel like yesterday. That state-championship cross-country trophy. The first kiss. The first trip along the beach after receiving that first driver's license. Like the first broken heart, not all of them are good. But many are.

I know that one of those moments for my father was that day the Navy brought me to Robin's Nest, a five-year old girl who spoke fluent Vietnamese and French, but knew no English for her father's world.

That moment is frozen in my dad's timeline. It's why, when the friends of my parents were pushing their children out of the house, I didn't stray from home until I was twenty-six, the year Higgins died, the year I now realize left my father lonely.

But I was a woman and not a girl, and I had to have the space to fly.

And if there were some things that my dad preferred I didn't do, say picking a lock in the middle of the night, well then, he shouldn't have taught me.

Lily slinks around the race track garage, shifting through workbenches, lowering on the ground to peer beneath cars.

Father would tell me I was making assumptions, but assumptions were all I had to go on for the moment. Dad always talked about how he trusted his instinct. So I would trust instinct. And my instinct tells me the place to look first is the garage of North Star Global.

A light illuminates the office window built adjacent to the North Star Global garage. Lily presses agains the wall and hears Lyle and Carol Hemphill arguing in the background.

LYLE

We can't go that route, Carol. I've told you time and again the bank isn't going to give us the benefit of the doubt.

CAROL

I don't understand why they wouldn't. Why would they want to see our track go under so early? If they were so worried about the investment, why did they approve it so quickly?

LYLE

We had experience. And good credit. The bank gave us good terms, Carol.

CAROL

Go back first thing tomorrow. Just explain how our misfortune's bumped up our insurance costs. Just let them know it's bad luck. Plead with them.

LYLE

You mean beg to them.

CAROL

If that's what it takes. Yes.

Lyle grumbles. He throws something to floor. Lily tries to scramble behind a car, but the opening door's light hits her square in the face.

LYLE

Lily Magnum? What are you doing here? How did you get in?

LILY

Give me a chance to explain, Mr. Hemphill.

Carol appears in the lit doorframe with an aluminum baseball bat.

CAROL

Is it another kid looking to steal sockets?

LYLE

It's fine, Carol. It's Lily Magnum.

CAROL

What in the world is she doing out here?

LILY

I can explain.

LYLE

You can explain in the morning. You've and the foundation's been good to us, Lily. Paid the bills. Gave us events. All you had to do is call. We'd let you in for any reason. Certainly no reason to sneak.

LILY

I'm afraid someone's sabotaged the foundation's car.

CAROL

Good Lord.

LYLE

All the more reason you shouldn't be slinking around here all by yourself.

CAROL

Have you searched all the garages then?

LILY

Only one left.

LYLE

It's screaming against my better judgement, but let's go look.

The camera shows that the final garage houses Wilson Baylor's vintage Porsche. Lyle strides ahead of Lily, and Lily sees a sudden flash from the corner of the garage. Flames suddenly leap onto the garage's ceiling and walls.

LILY

Look out!

The flames expand in a rush. They reach a set of tanks stored in the back of the garage, and garage explodes into a fireball that illuminates the raceway's track area. Lyle and Lily are thrown off of their feet, Lily hits the ground with a groan, her face contorted in page. But the camera shifts to show that Lyle has taken a far more severe impact, wheezing on the ground in front of Lily with the flames burning in the background. Lily grimaces and comes to Lyle's side, seeing that the Lyle has been burned.

LILY

Carol! Call 911! Carol!

INT. - HONOLULU GENERAL HOSPITAL - WAITING ROOM - MORNING

Thomas and Lily sit in the waiting room, waiting to hear news of Lyle Hemphill's condition. Carol is seated next to Lily, who holds her hand. Another segment of Thomas' narration plays as the camera pans back to show that several other groups of visitors anxiously await news of their loved ones.

THOMAS NARRATION

I've dealt with all kinds of nightmares during my life. Too many. But the worst nightmare I've ever had to face concerned Lily. A phone call in the darkest, moments of early morning. A police officer's voice on the line. An accident. A hospital. Nothing ever shakes me as badly as that nightmare.

LILY

Are you going to forgive me?

THOMAS

Yeah, but not at the moment. What did you have to move on?

LILY

North Star Global. Big oil.

THOMAS

That's not fair, Lily. You let your bias get in the way of your judgement. I looked at the books. North Star's invested more than anyone in this electric engine initiative. You don't treat them fairly. You can't afford that thinking as the head of the foundation.

LILY

I thought it was instinct.

THOMAS

You're not old and seasoned enough for instinct. Not yet.

A doctor enters the reception room and strides to the group.

CAROL

Will he be o.k.?

DOCTOR

He'll be fine. Given a little rest and a little time. We've given him some medicine to help with the pain of those second degree burns on his arms and face. We're really more concerned about the concussion. We'd like to observe him another day.

CAROL

Thank goodness.

The doctor nods and moves on. Carol trembles in relief. Lily hugs her.

LILY

Forgive me for prying. But are you and Lyle going to be alright through this?

CAROL

We will. Thank goodness Lyle kept up on the health insurance. You know, we've had to juggle with the bills. But he always paid that one. We'll make it through, but I'm not so sure about the track. Not with this now.

THOMAS

We don't know that fire was the track's fault.

CAROL

Does it matter? We've had such a terrible string of events. The forklift runs through a garage wall. Tools cabinets emptied during the night. Vandalized cars. Mr. Calvin's accident. Now this. What is the Baylor Group going to think about losing their car? The bank's been pushing hard. They're looking for any reason to call the loan due. I'm afraid this is the last straw.

LILY

We'll deal with that when we must. But Lyle's alright now. That's what we have to focus on.

Rick Wright hustles into the reception room. He smiles politely at Carol. Thomas stands from his seat and follows Rick to a small room off the reception room where there's coffee and candy vending machines.

RICK

I gave Wilson Baylor a call this morning, Thomas. Asked for some further details. Told him I was real interested, that I was just curious to see a list of some of the other interested backers.

THOMAS

That raise any eyebrows?

RICK

Raised both of them. There are several real big boys in on this deal. Mr. Baylor's just trolling for small fish to help disguise the big boys. Little fish like me. Because there's a connection between the big boys.

THOMAS

A bank.

RICK

You got it. The bank made Lyle and Carol a very, very generous loan eight months ago to help cover the cost of renovations. Too generous. And now they're pushing hard to foreclose on that track after the Hemphills have been late on several payments and have missed their last one.

THOMAS

Following a coincidental string of bad luck.

Lily pokes her head around the small vending room's corner.

LILY

Dad, Sarah Evans just called Carol. She's fuming mad. I can hear her screaming in Carol's phone. She's demanding that Carol have the remains of Mr. Baylor's car towed from the garage.

THOMAS

We can't let that happen. That car has to be examined for forensics.

LILY

That's what I told Carol. But Ms. Evan's saying they won't press for damages if Carol gives them that car. Says they won't turn it in to the insurance.

RICK

They can afford not to. Meanwhile, they leave Carol and Lyle with all those damages to the garages. That'll do them under and leave room for the tower.

LILY

Tower? What tower?

THOMAS

I'll explain here soon. Lily, you tell Carol to promise Ms. Evans just that.

LILY

We're not giving her the car.

THOMAS

Of course we're not, but we're getting her.

Rick grins at Thomas and punches his friend in the shoulder. Thomas grunts and rubs his shoulder. Rick grimaces and flexes his fingers.

LILY

Seasoned you may be, but the two of you are no longer boys.

EXT. - HAWAIIAN RACEWAY - GARAGE AREA - MID DAY

Sarah Evans' vehicles pulls through the open gate at the racetrack, passing along the various vehicles of the eighties in the parking lot. No one comes out to great her, and so Sarah exits her car and walks through the raceway's entrance and enters the sidelines along the inner face track.

A 1984 model of sport car (perhaps a Nissan 300ZX) chases along the racetrack, running virtually silent because of its electrical engine.

Lyle and Carol Hemphill are not in sight. So Sarah Evans approaches Thomas Magnum, who watches the car speed along the track, timing the car's pace with a hand-held stopwatch.

THOMAS

Real shame about your car.

SARAH

Thomas Magnum, right? Yeah, it's terrible. Mr. Baylor's broken up about it.

THOMAS

Well, I suppose one does need to make sacrifices sometimes for the bigger picture.

SARAH

What does that mean?

THOMAS

A garage exploding like that. In the middle of the night. People hurt.

SARAH

I wasn't aware people were hurt. How badly?

THOMAS

Oh, not too badly. A little time. A little patience. A lot like Bryant Calvin's diagnosis. Could've been a lot worse. Fire started out of nowhere, kinda just jumped to some Acetylene tanks the Hemphills stored in the corner.

Sarah turns pale at this news. She scans along the track. She seems to fidget with her purse.

SARAH

I'm sorry to hear that. I've only come for the car. Mr. Baylor doesn't want to press for compensation. I'm really only here for the car. Where are the Hemphills?

THOMAS

I'm afraid I can't let you have the car.

SARAH

I'm afraid it's not your say.

THOMAS

It isn't. That's a police matter know.

Carol turns and begins to walk away from Thomas. But uniformed policemen appear at the entrance. The car continues to speed around the track. Thomas momentarily looks away from Sarah, clicks the pocket watch and whistles at the time.

THOMAS

You know, I figure the foundation's electric engine trials gave you and Wilson good cover. Enter a car. Play the role of a good philanthropist. Get real close to the property you're looking to make the play on. Help give it that final push towards insolvency.

SARAH

I don't know what you're talking about.

THOMAS

A nice loan. A few bank executives in on the take. Before you know it, the Hemphills are out, and the Baylor group cuts in and gets prime real estate at a cut-rate price.

SARAH

Nonsense. What would we want with a track?

THOMAS

Nothing. But this land would've been a great place for a tower. If only no one would've been hurt last night. If only no one had been around that garage. You could've made it here first thing in the morning and towed that car straight out by promising the Hemphills that the Baylor Group wouldn't seek any damage. Thus removing the evidence of that last push.

SARAH

I'm just a little girl in a tank with sharks. It's not my idea. You can understand that. I can give you bigger fish.

THOMAS

Oh, I think Lily can handle the big fish just as well as I can handle the small fish.

Sarah Evans gives little resistance as Thomas nods and a pair of police officers place her into handcuffs. Thomas smiles and turns around to watch the sports car go so quickly, and so quietly, around the Hemphill's race track.

EXT. - HAWAIIAN GOLF COURSE - DRIVING RANGE - MID DAY

Dalton Booker hammers drives off of a driving range tee. Middle-aged men in golf shirts stare at Dalton as he hits the golf balls so straight and far, admiring his swing and wondering if it's rude to watch a man so competent at driving a golf ball no matter the prosthetic legs starting at the knees. The camera shows a couple of Dalton's swings, shows the balls arcing towards a flag waving in the driving range's distance.

Wilson Baylor rolls up to the driving range in a custom golf cart, one of those models with the enclosed cab, with the artificial grill and the hood ornament in front. He nods at Dalton as he grabs a bucket of golf balls and climbs to the driving range tee boxes.

WILSON

That's a beautiful golf swing.

DALTON

Thanks. My father taught me.

WILSON

Did you learn with those legs? Was that too personal a question?

DALTON

It's alright. No. Lost the legs in Afghanistan.

WILSON

We thank you for your service.

DALTON

Oh, you're welcome.

WILSON

Hey, do you mind looking at my swing? Maybe giving me a pointer?

DALTON

Not at all. But it will cost you a name.

WILSON

Wilson Baylor.

DALTON

Dalton Booker. Friends call me Booker.

Wilson Baylor pulls a well-cleaned, expensive driver from his oversized golf bag, one of those drivers with the giant heads. He stretches his fingers as he puts a new golf glove on his hand before carefully setting the golf ball into the ground.

DALTON

I can't say anything about your equipment.

WILSON

If only it was that easy.

Wilson swings and makes fairly solid contact with the golf ball. Yet the ball does not fly as straight or as far as Dalton's.

WILSON

Like always, short and to the right.

DALTON

Yeah, pretty mortal mistake that one. You're dropping your back shoulder. Try to hit down on the ball more.

Wilson takes a second swing, and the flight of his ball is much improved.

WILSON

Hey, what do you say to a round of eighteen? Give you plenty of chances to critique my form.

DALTON

Afraid we won't have a time for that.

WILSON

You have an appointment?

DALTON

Afraid we both do.

WILSON

What are you talking about?

DALTON

The tower will not stand, Mr. Baylor. I'm with the Higgins Foundation. The foundation you donated you vehicle to before the explosion last night. Lily Magnum sent me. Thought the foundation should give you a chance to turn yourself in.

Wilson grips his driver.

WILSON

For what? You're mad.

DALTON

Fraud. Larceny. Harassment. Assault. I'm no attorney, though. We all just thought you might look a little better if you came along easy.

Wilson lowers his guard for a moment before suddenly darting towards his cart. He turns and throws his golf club at Dalton, who ducks out of the way well before the spinning driver can strike him. Dalton apologizes as he leaps into another person's cart and gives pursuit to Wilson's cart that is barreling down the driving range.

Golf balls rattle off of both carts as they spin forward. Wilson turns and cuts across the golf course. His cart cuts across fairways and golfers curse. Dalton turns off the pursuit, instead driving towards a bridge he anticipates Wilson must cross. Wilson doesn't notice Dalton doing so as his cart bounces across some shallow hazards.

The camera shows Dalton jump out of his cart. For the first time in season nine, we see that Dalton is a very quick runner on his artificial legs. Wilson sees Dalton too late and cannot turn off of the bridge. Dalton leaps into the cart and tackles Wilson to the fairway, instantly locking Wilson's arms in a grasp.

DALTON

I learned how to run like that after I got these legs.

Golfers stare in shock as Dalton drags Wilson back onto the custom cart and maneuvers toward the club house, where two uniformed police officers are waiting.

INT. - INTERIOR BOARD ROOM OF HAWAIIAN BANK TOWER - AFTERNOON

Light streams through the windows of a board meeting held in a lofty space atop a tall bank tower. A knock on the door surprises the gathered board of directors, who frown at each other, all of them curious to learn the nature of their meeting's distraction.

Lily Thomas strides into the board room dressed in her formal executive attire. Three suited detectives accompany her into the room. Lily smiles. She holds up a hand before anyone can say a word.

LILY

The detectives behind me only need a certain three of you to accompany them back to their office. I'll explain everything to the rest of you immediately afterwards. Oh, and I have a proposition. One that I think will play to everyone's mutual interest in this regard.

Three of the directors frown and stand from their chairs as the detectives escort them from the room. The others look perplexed as Lily walks to the boardroom door and closes the door on the camera.

EXT. - HAWAIIAN RACEWAY - TRACKSIDE - MID DAY

Thomas, Rick, T.C., Lily, Dalton and Lyle and Carol Hemphill are assembled at the racetrack as several older sports cars, now outfitted with electric engines, buzz around the oval. Journalists and cameramen gather to film the event, interviewing teams of technicians about the ramifications of such innovation.

Dalton snaps pictures of the blurring cars from time to time with his camera. He grumbles and frowns often at his results. Thomas cannot resist offering a little advice.

THOMAS

There's plenty of light, Booker. You need to increase the shutter speed.

DALTON

There's no shutter speed button on this camera.

Lily grabs the camera from Dalton and chuckles as she adjusts the settings.

LILY

There you go. Just as good as dad's old camera.

Camera back in hand, Dalton turns and tries to take further shots of the cars racing around the track. His camera seems to trail too slowly to focus on any of the cars.

T.C.

This really is something, Lily. The foundation's time trials were just the competition to boost these teams in their work. Man, takes one back. All those cars look brand new, and they're just purring around the track.

LILY

North Star has just crushed the benchmark. They've gone above and beyond. My assumptions were all wrong about them.

THOMAS

Well, you're smarter for it, Lily. It's instinct when it all works out, and its assumptions when it all goes wrong.

RICK

And Lyle and Carol, you two have this track looking fantastic! I can't believe the two of you are already putting up new garages.

CAROL

We have Lily to thank for it. The foundation wrote us a check that's going to cover the cost of whatever renovations are still needed.

LILY

Thank the bank. A little persuading, and the board of directors decided a little philanthropy to support a pair of local entrepreneurs was just the thing they needed. Good for marketing.

LYLE

We thank you for your persuasion all the same.

LILY

Hey, Dalton, you mind if I borrow you're camera for a moment?

DALTON

Not at all. You see something to shoot?

LILY

Oh, just a face.

T.C. and Rick grin and point Thomas in the direction of one of the entry lanes to the track. The Ferrari rolls towards them. Bryant Calvin steers the car to a grinning Thomas, while his son Markus, seated on his lap, blares on the horn. The camera clicks as Lily snaps shots of her father's expression as the Ferrari, polished, clean and gleaming in the sunlight rolls up to him. Thomas paces around the car.

THOMAS

Oh, it's wonderful, Lily.

LILY

Well, what do your bones tell you? Is it the same car?

Bryant and Markus step out of the car, both of them laughing and smiling. Thomas trails a finger along the hood's contours. He appears to stand a moment in memory.

THOMAS

The heart might be new, but she's got the same soul.

BRYANT

Well, Thomas, don't just stand there. There's one final time trial left.

THOMAS (Grinning)

Are you serious?

MARKUS

Get your rump in there. Race it flat-out!

BRYANT

Me and the boys worked real special on this one, Thomas. They're all standing behind me cheering for you.

Thomas looks up, sees the mechanics who wave at him, and he waves back before hurrying into the car.

The final shots of the episode show Thomas Magnum circling the track. Wind is in his hair, but somehow his trademark Tigers cap stays upon his head. Sunlight glistens off of his dark sunglasses. Thomas completes another lap for the camera in the sparking, red Ferrari - made new once more, two old friends again reunited in wonderful life.

The camera freezes to end the episode, focussed upon Thomas Magnum beaming a smile from behind the wheel of a famous, red Ferrari.