A/N: In February of 2004, I was informed of a planned VTV series focusing on a pre-Batman Bruce Wayne. The pitch was summarized as "Batman gets the Smallville treatment". I was given a brief overview of the series and invited to submit a sample pilot as an audition. Following is that pilot.

Disclaimer: All characters depicted here, Gotham City, and Wayne Enterprises are the property of DC comics. No financial remuneration is being derived from this work of fanfiction.

"Giri"

1.01

Written by:

Esther-Channah

CAST LIST

Bruce Wayne

Alfred Pennyworth

Vicki Vale

Harvey Dent

Lucius Fox

Selina Kyle

Slam Bradley

James Gordon

GUEST CAST LIST:

Lesley Thompkins /Debra Mooney

Young Bruce/Brett Loehr


TEASER

EXT. ALLEY – NIGHT

BRUCE WAYNE, eighteen years old, wearing black martial arts gi, black gloves and red headband moves stealthily with a fluid grace. Footsteps behind him make him pause. He spins round to face two NINJAS in garb similar to his but masked. Immediately, BRUCE shifts to a fighting stance. NINJA #1 lunges for BRUCE. BRUCE sidesteps the attack, seizing hold of his assailant and flipping him smoothly over one shoulder. NINJA #2 leaps, aiming a kick at BRUCE's head. BRUCE dodges left, one arm out protecting his face. The foot passes harmlessly over him as NINJA #2 lands behind. BRUCE, fists raised, spins around, kicking high and wide, catching NINJA #2 in the solar plexus. NINJA #2 staggers, but does not fall until BRUCE punches him in the face. BRUCE looks overhead. The roof of the building that he is facing has a half-dozen winged grotesques mounted on the roof. Standing on the roof, directly in front of one of them, is a man. In the dim light, it is impossible to discern any of the man's facial characteristics, nor whether we are seeing the wings of the grotesque or a cape flowing behind the figure. BRUCE's eyes narrow, as a hand seizes hold of his shoulder from behind. Caught off-guard, Bruce is pulled down by NINJA #1. As he falls, BRUCE manages to kick NINJA #1's legs out from under him and they fall together. They scuffle on the ground, rolling on top of one another. Apart from muffled panting, neither man utters a sound. Finally, BRUCE maneuvers NINJA #1 onto his stomach, and gets one of his arms around NINJA #1's throat. He squeezes. NINJA #1 struggles, but after several seconds, his eyes roll back and his body goes limp. BRUCE waits a few seconds more before relaxing his grip. NINJA #1 is unconscious but still breathing. BRUCE looks up to the row of grotesques and stands in line with the statue before which the unknown man is poised.

BRUCE

Who are you?

There is no response.

BRUCE (CONT'D)

What do you want…

As BRUCE utters the last word, an older voice more authoritative, chimes in:

MAN

…Want of us?

BRUCE whirls, a horrified expression on his face. The Ninjas have vanished, and the alley seems suddenly wider, the buildings higher. Several feet away, he sees in tableau THOMAS WAYNE a well-dressed man, his arm linked protectively with that of a woman, his wife, MARTHA, also elegantly attired. Facing them is a second man, wearing a bomber jacket over faded jeans. He is slightly crouched, training a gun on the couple.

GUNMAN

Your wallet. For a start. (To MARTHA) Those pearls real, lady? They sure look like it. Hand 'em over.

BRUCE watches, frozen, shaking his head in silent denial. He looks down at his hands to see that they are no longer gloved. They are the hands of a small child. A light appears at a lower level window, allowing BRUCE to see his own reflection mirrored in the glass. It is the face of YOUNG BRUCE.

THOMAS

Best to do what he says, Martha.

MARTHA swallows. Her hands move toward her necklace.

GUNMAN

Slowly.

MARTHA

(Nods as she complies)

BRUCE struggles to move but is apparently frozen in place, unnoticed by the three adults. Trembling, he shuts his eyes and cries out…

BRUCE (CONT'D)

Mom!

At his outcry, the GUNMAN, startled, pulls the trigger. A single shot is heard, as THOMAS slumps to the ground.

MARTHA

Thomas! No!

Bends over THOMAS.

MARTHA (CONT'D)

You've killed him!

GUNMAN holds the weapon in shock, one hand on the grip, one on the barrel.

I-I didn't mean for…

MARTHA (hysterical)

Murderer! You killed him!

GUNMAN

Shut up! Shut up, lady! It was an accident!

MARTHA

You—

GUNMAN

I'm warning you, shut it or—

MARTHA

…Murder—

A second gunshot is heard and MARTHA falls over her husband.

BRUCE

Nooooo!

GUNMAN runs away footsteps pounding on the pavement. The sound is more like a fist on wood than shoes on cement.

BRUCE

NO! Nononono

ALFRED

Master Bruce! Sir! Sir, do wake up, sir.

Scene dissolves to INT. HOTEL ROOM. NIGHT. Sounds of thunder and rain from outside.

BRUCE is in bed, drenched in sweat. ALFRED bends over him.

BRUCE

Alfred?

ALFRED

Another nightmare, Sir?

BRUCE

(Shakes his head) The same one, Alfred. The same one I've had every night since we booked our return trip back to Gotham. (Sits up in bed). I fight in the alley. I win, and then I see it all again. That night, after the movie when we cut through the alley. Only this time, I'm not with them. I see it all happen, and I can't stop it. If anything, I speed the whole thing up.

ALFRED

If I may, Sir… our imminent return to Gotham is likely awakening memories that you have done your utmost to suppress these last ten years.

BRUCE

Armchair psychology?

ALFRED

Merely a logical hypothesis. You are, of course, aware that your inability to prevent their murder in no way makes you responsible for it.

BRUCE

I know. Wish my subconscious did, too. If just the idea of going back to Gotham is doing this to me, what's it going to be like when I actually get there?

ALFRED

Master Bruce, perhaps the proper question to ask, is what Gotham will be like when you leave? The Wayne Family name is steeped in tradition. Your abilities and resources would seem to place you in what some would call a rather enviable position. You may opt to fritter your time away at mindless pursuits… or you may choose to hone your talents and leave a lasting and powerful impression.

BRUCE

Thanks.

ALFRED

Good night, Master Bruce.

Walks to door. Opens it. As he passes through…

BRUCE (settling back down)

G'night

INT. HOTEL SUITE SITTING ROOM. MODERATE LIGHTING. NIGHT

ALFRED (closes door to Bruce's room behind him)

Pleasant dreams.

EXT. HOTEL WINDOW – NIGHT. Camera pulls back and aims upward at ext wall of hotel. On rooftop are six grotesques at regular intervals. Lightning flashes.

FADE TO BLACK


ACT ONE

EXT. HUDSON UNIVERSITY – DAY

A blue Mercedes CLS500 is driving slowly along the tree-lined campus.

INT. MERCEDES – DAY

BRUCE is behind the wheel, scanning for a parking space. He spots one and attempts to parallel park. As he eases into the spot, he bumps the Honda Civic in front of him, triggering an alarm.

BRUCE

(Slams hand onto dashboard) Perfect!

VICKI VALE (off-camera)

Hey! (Runs to Civic)

VICKI (CONT'D)

Hey, that's my car!

BRUCE (exits vehicle)

I am SO sorry.

VICKI

Sorry? You're sorry?

Turns off alarm. Goes to inspect damage

VICKI (CONT'D)

This dent wasn't here, before, Mister… Mister…

BRUCE

Bruce Wayne. It was an accident. Look. Let me give you my insurance infor-

VICKI

Fat lot of good that'll do me. My deductible's five hundred… you said 'Bruce Wayne'?

BRUCE

Yes

VICKI

As in Wayne Enterprises, Wayne Foundation, and the Marion Wayne Memorial lecture hall over there?

Points to an imposing Victorian structure on the other side of the quadrangle

BRUCE

I… I didn't know about the lecture hall until I opened my orientation package, yesterday. Listen. I really am sorry about the car. (Pauses)

I've got an idea. Let me try pulling out of that parking spot. Maybe I'll get lucky and ding you again… just enough so they'll have to pay your claim.

VICKI

(Laughs)

BRUCE

Or you could just show me the mechanic's estimate, and I'll cover it. Do you have a pen? I'll just get your name and number and you can take mine and…

HARVEY DENT (Off-camera)

Vicki, don't tell me you're about to fall for that old trick!

Dashes onto scene. Turns to Bruce

HARVEY (CONT'D)

Harvey Dent, pre-law. Confess! This was all a cheap ploy to get the phone number off of the hottest thing this side of Mercury. Wasn't it? Wasn't it?

VICKI

(Laughs)

Harvey, please, I wasn't anywhere near the car when he bumped it!

HARVEY

Is that so? Well… hmmm…

(Pauses)

HARVEY (CONT'D)

Your Honor, I move that my earlier comments be stricken from the record. Let's start over. Harvey Dent.

VICKI

Vicki Vale.

BRUCE

Bruce Wayne.

HARVEY

Charmed.

EXT. MARION WAYNE MEMORIAL LECTURE HALL – DAY

BRUCE, VICKI, and HARVEY exit the building, walk down the steps, and stand at one side.

HARVEY

Breathe it in, kids. Our last hours of freedom before stifling academia tightens its grip.

VICKI

It couldn't be more stifling than that orientation lecture. Tell me that wasn't one of our future instructors!

BRUCE

Don't worry. The only undergrads that have Dean Collins are the fourth-year honors students taking the seminar in post-modern architecture.

HARVEY

What'd you do? Memorize the course calendar?

BRUCE

Didn't you?

VICKI

Oh, brother! I'm heading for the bookstore. Harvey, we still on for coffee, later?

HARVEY

You know it. Bruce, you want to come, too?

BRUCE

No, there's something I need to take care of.

HARVEY

Namely?

BRUCE

I have to take over the reins of a global corporation…

HARVEY and VICKI start to smile, then realize that BRUCE is perfectly serious.

EXT. WAYNE ENTERPRISES - DAY

A familiar Mercedes pulls into a parking space marked: Reserved for CEO.

INT. ELEVATOR OF WAYNE ENTERPRISES

BRUCE is in the elevator with 7 other people. During the scene the elevator will stop at several floors while passengers embark and disembark.

MAN (to WOMAN)

…two days before we were going to launch?

WOMAN

Right. Mal just called us all in and said we had to pull the campaign because Davenport just got theirs on the market yesterday.

MAN

Same product?

WOMAN

Identical. Mal bought one to compare and it's our specs. They rushed it, so it's got a few bugs, but they got it out FIRST. Sure, it's a hack job, but they'll get an upgrade out in a year or so. Meanwhile, they're on the market and we're out for the campaign. Ooh! If I get my hands on the person who leaked those blueprints, I swear it'll be justifiable homicide!

WOMAN and MAN exit elevator. By the time it arrives at the top floor, Bruce is the only one left in the car.

INT. WAYNE ENTERPRISES RECEPTION – DAY

BRUCE approaches the reception desk, looking around him, taking everything in.

RECEPTIONIST

May I help you?

BRUCE

I have a three o'clock appointment with Mr. Lucius Fox. My name is—

RECEPTIONIST

Oh, of COURSE, Mr. Wayne!

BRUCE

(Starts visibly)

RECEPTIONIST picks up telephone.

Mr. Fox, Mr. Wayne is here to see you.

Puts down telephone

RECEPTIONIST (CONT'D)

He'll be right out, Mr. Wayne. Why don't you have a seat?

BRUCE (sitting down)

Than-

RECEPTIONIST

Would you like some coffee, Mr. Wayne? Or should I have someone run down to the caf' and get you a danish? Or-

BRUCE

No, I—

LUCIUS FOX enters the reception area.

Mr. Wayne! Welcome!

BRUCE rises immediately

LUCIUS (CONT'D)

Lucius Fox, Vice President.

He extends his hand. BRUCE shakes it firmly if a little too quickly.

BRUCE

Bruce Wayne

LUCIUS

I understand you've been away for the last ten years.

BRUCE

Yes

LUCIUS (waits for BRUCE to elaborate)

Silence

LUCIUS (CONT'D)

Away at school?

BRUCE

In a manner of speaking.

LUCIUS

I suppose you'd like the grand tour, Mr. Wayne.

BRUCE

Fine.

LUCIUS leads BRUCE past the reception desk and down a long corridor. As they pass by, people fall silent and stare after them. LUCIUS is talking but BRUCE is barely paying attention. He takes in everything, silently, nodding to LUCIUS at intervals. As they round the corner, BRUCE stops in his tracks. Facing them is a large portrait of THOMAS WAYNE.

LUCIUS

Mr. Wayne?

BRUCE ignores him, walking slowly toward the portrait. After a moment LUCIUS joins him.

LUCIUS (CONT'D)

He was a great man.

BRUCE

Yes.

LUCIUS

His… passing was a shock to all of us here at the time. I can only imagine…

BRUCE

(Frowns)

LUCIUS

(Shakes his head) No. Of course I can't. Forgive me, Mr. Wayne.

BRUCE

Don't… don't call me that.

LUCIUS

I beg your pardon?

BRUCE

Don't call me that. (Points to portrait) Every time you call me 'Mr. Wayne', that's who I think you're talking about. My name is 'Bruce', Mr. Fox.

LUCIUS

Then, I suppose you'd better get used to calling me 'Lucius', Bruce.

BRUCE

(Smiles slightly) I'll try. It's just… you're…

LUCIUS

Older?

BRUCE

Well…

LUCIUS

Fine. I'm old enough to remember Birmingham, and you're CEO of the corporation. Either we're both on a first-name basis, or we aren't. Alright?

BRUCE

Alright… Lucius.

LUCIUS

Well. Shall we move on, …Bruce?

INT. ELEVATOR Doors open on ground floor. LUCIUS nods to guard at security station and leads BRUCE out the front door.

EXT. WAYNECORP – DAY

LUCIUS shows BRUCE a grassy area at the rear of the building.

LUCIUS

You can see clear over to the harbor from here.

BRUCE

It's… overwhelming

LUCIUS

You aren't talking about the view.

BRUCE

Lucius, I'm eighteen years old. I don't know the first thing about running a company. I've never even WORKED for a company.

LUCIUS

Would you like to start?

BRUCE

What?

LUCIUS

We usually have student interns in the summer. They work rotations within various departments. One week in marketing, one week in R&D, you get the idea. Maybe that would help you develop an appreciation for the workings of this place…

(Breaks off as he realizes that BRUCE is staring at him with a furious expression on his face.)

BRUCE

Develop… an appreciation?

LUCIUS (bewildered)

Yes

BRUCE

You think… I don't… appreciate this enterprise? Is that what you think, Lucius? You think I don't value my father's legacy?

LUCIUS

I didn't mean it like that—

BRUCE (softly)

Maybe you're right. Maybe I don't want his legacy. Maybe I'd rather just have him back.

Walks briskly toward parking lot.

LUCIUS

Bruce?

BRUCE

(Quickens pace Once he reaches his car, he gets in and drives off)

EXT. PARK ROW – FLOWER STAND - SUNSET

BRUCE points to a plastic bucket in which several bouquets of red and pink roses are arranged. There are other buckets containing carnations, daisies, etc. The FLOWER SELLER nods energetically and reaches toward the roses.

BRUCE

Red, please

(Money changes hands)

EXT. PARK ROW – ALLEY - SUNSET

BRUCE appears at the mouth of the alley. It is the same place that he saw in his dream, but now it appears narrower. With some trepidation, he advances. Slumped against a dumpster, SLAM BRADLEY sleeps, partially covered by newspapers, a bottle of cognac barely visible poking out from under the papers. BRUCE advances cautiously, one hand brushing the brick wall.

BRUCE (softly)

Why did I come here? What possible reason could I have had for coming back here, of all places?

(Leans against wall)

BRUCE (CONT'D)

I should have stayed in India. Or Japan. Hell, I should have stayed in Geneva. There, I could block it all out.

(Looks around and spots SLAM. Thinks it over, shrugs, and addresses his comments to the sleeping drunk)

BRUCE (CONT'D)

But ever since the plane touched down at Goodwin, I knew that now that I was back in Gotham, I'd have to come back to Park Row. Maybe because this is the last place I saw them alive… and part of me still hoped they'd be here, somehow, waiting.

(Shakes his head, and laughs, bitterly)

BRUCE (CONT'D)

I don't think I realized how absolutely idiotic that sounded until I said it out loud. They're gone. They're not coming back. I knew it when I was eight years old. I just don't think it ever really sunk in until now.

EXT. ALLEY – DUSK

In the fading daylight, the sounds of the city take on an eerier note. BRUCE shifts the roses in his arms and advances to the spot where the mugging occurred. Carefully, he lowers the roses to the pavement.

BRUCE

Forgive me, if there was anything I could have done that night.

(Shakes his head)

BRUCE (CONT'D)

I know. I know. Alfred told me it wasn't my fault. The police told me it wasn't my fault. But I still don't know if I believe them. I-I realize that in one way it's moot. If there's any way that night could have gone differently, it's too late, now. Too late for you. But somehow… Somehow, I'm going to make this city a place where murders just… won't happen.

(Sighs and half-smiles)

BRUCE

You're probably thinking that's a tall order. I know I am. And you're right. It won't be easy. But… if I can figure out how to start… the rest will follow.

(BRUCE touches the pavement gently, and then rises to his feet. As he turns, he sees his path blocked by four scruffy-looking youths. Two, LINK and SCRAGGS, carry lengths of chain, one, SULTAN, is holding a baseball bat, and the fourth, SHIV, has a knife.)

LINK

Hey, man. I can tell ya how to make sure one murder 'just… won't happen.'

SHIV

Yeah. (Smirks. Advances two steps closer to BRUCE, holding the knife, point-outward, at the level of BRUCE's throat.)

SHIV (CONT'D)

Let's see what you've got in your pockets.

FADE TO BLACK


ACT TWO

EXT. ALLEY – EVENING

BRUCE is surrounded by the four youths. SHIV is still training the knife on him. LINK and SULTAN have taken up positions behind BRUCE. SCRAGGS is several steps behind and to the left of SHIV. He twirls the chain menacingly.

BRUCE

You really don't want to do this.

SHIV

Oh, good one. What's next? Lemme guess: 'Don't get me angry, you wouldn't like me when I'm angry?'

YOUTHS

(All laugh)

SHIV

Last chance. You gonna turn out your pockets, or am I?

BRUCE

(Hesitates, then reluctantly reaches his hand into his pocket.)

SHIV

Slowly

BRUCE freezes. Scene dissolves to same EXT. ALLEY – NIGHT, TEN YEARS EARLIER. MARTHA and THOMAS both stand several paces before YOUNG BRUCE, shielding him from the GUNMAN

GUNMAN

…Hand 'em over.

THOMAS

Best to do what he says, Martha.

YOUNG BRUCE sees MARTHA's hands reach behind her neck.

GUNMAN

Slowly… (Pause) slowly… (Pause) slowly…

EXT. ALLEY – DUSK, PRESENT DAY

BRUCE pulls the wallet out of his pocket. As it slides free, it drops from his fingers to the pavement.

BRUCE

Sorry.

SHIV

Scraggs. Get it. (To BRUCE) Don't be any stupider than you've already been, Rich Boy.

SHIV advances knife-blade a fraction of an inch closer to BRUCE's throat as SCRAGGS stoops to retrieve the wallet. As SCRAGGS bends down, BRUCE flings himself to one side, away from the knife blade, while delivering a kick to SCRAGGS' jaw.

SCRAGGS

Ahh!

Claps hand to chin, dropping chain.

BRUCE grabs SHIV's arm, chopping at his wrist. The knife falls. BRUCE whirls, keeping SHIV between himself and LINK and SULTAN. They fall back, waiting. BRUCE tightens his grip on SHIV, maintaining the standoff. There is a clanking sound as SCRAGGS swings his chain. It loops around BRUCE's ankle, jerking him off-balance. As BRUCE falls, he keeps hold of SHIV, pulling the youth down on top of him. SHIV gropes for his knife. BRUCE tries to prevent this, but SHIV breaks free and retrieves the blade. As soon as SHIV is clear, SULTAN delivers a kick to BRUCE's ribs.

BRUCE

Uhnnh!

LINK swings his chain down toward BRUCE's shoulder. BRUCE raises an arm to protect his face and the chain falls heavily on his wrist and arm.

BRUCE

Aa-aah!

SHIV

Link! Sultan! Hold him!

LINK and SULTAN each take one of BRUCE's arms and haul him to his feet.

SHIV

Told you not to try anything stupid, punk, didn't I?

BRUCE struggles in obvious pain

SHIV

I don't think so.

Brings blade to BRUCE's cheek

SHIV (CONT'D)

You forgot to shave tod—

A cognac bottle hurtles through the air, catching the side of SHIV's head. SHIV drops. The knife cuts into BRUCE's cheek as SHIV falls. BRUCE slams his heel down on SULTAN's instep. SULTAN releases BRUCE's arm. BRUCE delivers roundhouse punch to LINK while SLAM pummels SKRAGGS into unconsciousness. BRUCE delivers a sharp kick to LINK. SLAM bends down to inspect SHIV. SULTAN flees.

SLAM

He'll be out for a while. You OK?

BRUCE

Never… unh! Better.

SLAM

I've heard that one before, Kid. You owe me for a bottle of cognac.

BRUCE

I… owe you for my life. But that bottle was at least three-quarters gone.

SLAM

Very good. How'd you figure that out?

BRUCE

Puddle on the pavement. 'Ts too small…

SLAM

Kid!

BRUCE

(Staggering) I'm fine.

SLAM

Slips BRUCE's arm around his shoulders and his own arm around BRUCE's waist.

SLAM (CONT'D)

Sure ya are, Kid. Sure ya are. More guts than smarts but ya obviously got plenty of those, too. Don't worry. Ol' Slam Bradley knows a place to get you fixed up. An' it's jus' around the corner from here. Think ya can make it?

BRUCE

(Groans)

SLAM

That's the spirit! Come on!

EXT. THOMPKINS CLINIC – NIGHT

INT. THOMPKINS CLINIC – NIGHT

BRUCE is propped up in a cot as a NURSE bandages his forearm. BRUCE is shirtless, and a bandage is wrapped around his lower torso. SLAM sits nearby.

NURSE

You'll live.

SLAM

Appreciate the update. Wanna tell us something we don't know?

LESLEY enters.

LESLEY

Mr. Bradley. I think that this is the soberest I've seen you drunk in a good long time.

SLAM

Now, Doc. Quit flirting with me. You know I've got a wife. Leastwise until the divorce gets finalized.

LESLEY

Bruce? It is you, isn't it?

BRUCE

L-Lesley?

They embrace.

LESLEY

Alfred wrote that you two were coming back. I was hoping to see you again, but not like this. What on earth were you thinking… Slam? You found him in Crime Alley?

SLAM

Yep.

LESLEY

I'm sorry. I should have realized.

She hugs BRUCE harder. He winces. LESLEY quickly releases him.

SLAM

I take it you two know each other.

LESLEY

Dipsomania hasn't totally obliterated your deductive skills, Mr. Bradley. Bruce's father was a good colleague of mine. And a better friend.

SLAM

You're last name's 'Wayne,' Kid, ain't it?

As BRUCE nods, ALFRED bursts in.

ALFRED

Master Bruce!

BRUCE

I'm fine, Alfred. It's just been a really long day.

ALFRED

Indeed, Sir? Well, I shall look forward to the details. Doctor Leslie, is he fit to be discharged?

LESLIE

I've missed that.

ALFRED

Ma'am?

LESLIE

Alfred, you are the only person who has ever addressed me as 'Doctor Leslie.' It's good hearing it again. Bruce has a snapped rib and that arm's going to ache for a few days. Ditto the ankle. The cut on his face shouldn't leave a scar, but I'll give you some salve for it, just to be sure.

SLAM (to ALFRED)

Cap?

ALFRED freezes. Looks Slam over carefully.

ALFRED

Good L-rd! Private Bradley!

SLAM

Never forget a face Cap. But your accent ain't what it used ta be.

ALFRED

Indeed.

BRUCE

Wait. You know Alfred?

SLAM

Alfred, is it? Funny. When he introduced himself to me, I coulda sworn he told me he was Alex Farthington, 3 RAR.

NURSE (off-camera)

Doctor Thompkins?

LESLIE exits

ALFRED (sotto voce)

Alfred Pennyworth, MI-6. While Britain was not an official participant in the Vietnam conflict, her neutrality did not prevent the placement of certain intelligence operatives within the Australian Armed Forces.

SLAM

Yeah, well, listen up, Kid. When yours truly got himself cut off from his platoon and cut up by VC shrapnel, it was this guy here who found me, patched me up on the spot and hauled me through enemy territory and no man's land to a MASH unit.

BRUCE (to ALFRED)

You never said a word.

ALFRED

Discretion IS one of the key requirements for intelligence operatives.

SLAM

But not for loudmouthed PI's like yours truly. Hey, sorry, Cap. Didn't mean to blow your cover.

ALFRED

In present company, you have not. Though I would be cautious about bringing up the subject in other circles. And perhaps it would be best were you to refer to me as 'Alfred' in future.

SLAM

Whatever you say, Al. And listen, if there's ever anything I can do for ya—

LESLEY re-enters, accompanied by JAMES GORDON

LESLEY

Bruce? This is Detective James Gordon. He has some questions for you, if you think you're up for it?

GORDON

They can keep for a day or two, but it's best to go over details while they're still fresh in your mind.

BRUCE is silent.

GORDON (CONT'D)

What were you doing in this area?

BRUCE (looks at ALFRED and LESLIE. Closes his eyes.)

Nothing

GORDON

Nothing?

BRUCE

Nothing that could possibly be of interest to you. I wasn't buying drugs. I wasn't looking for a one-night-stand, or a bottle of cheap wine. My business was… personal. And it wasn't the reason they attacked me.

GORDON

Let me give you a little advice, Son.

BRUCE (bristling)

I'm not—

SLAM

At ease, both of youse

GORDON

Stay out of this, Slam.

SLAM

Maybe you didn't hear, Jim, but I'm an eyewitness, too. (To BRUCE) Jim's only been with GCPD the last five years. (To JIM) Surprised your buddies on the force didn't brief you on this one before you came barging in, 'cause if they had, a smart guy like you wouldn't have had to ask that question. So, why don't we go off some place private and I'll tell you a little story about how Crime Alley got its name…

SLAM steers GORDON off to a far corner of the room.

BRUCE (to ALFRED)

I know. It was stupid. I just felt like I had to go there. And it was still light out.

LESLIE

(Sighs) Things have changed, Bruce. Park Row's dangerous in broad daylight, deadly after dark.

BRUCE

Why do you stay, here, then?

LESLEY

I'm a stubborn old lady, Bruce. Over the years, I've seen this area claim the lives… the souls, of people I cared deeply for—and I don't just mean your parents, either. Many good men, women… children. Children are the hardest. All that potential wasted. I take that back. There's something harder. When I see a young person embrace that same evil that took a friend, or a sibling, or, yes, Bruce, a parent away from them… that's another victory for the… call it darkness, if you like, though I find that a little melodramatic for my liking. (Sighs) Sometimes, I do think it would be better if I were to close up shop, here. I could retire, I suppose. Or open up a clinic in Newtown or Tricorner, where people pay their bills on time and bring in children with sports injuries instead of gunshot wounds. But, if I let the baser elements in the area chase me away, I think I'll be handing the violence another victory it doesn't deserve. So, here I am, last of the die-hard idealists. And, you, for one, are fortunate that I am running my clinic in this neighborhood, hmmm?

BRUCE

I'm not arguing.

SLAM and GORDON draw closer.

GORDON

I didn't realize.

BRUCE

I understand, Detective. But I'd rather not discuss that point any further.

GORDON

Fine with me, though when we get them, you may need to testify in court.

SLAM

(Snorts) Don't hold yer breath, Kid.

GORDON

Do you mind?

BRUCE

Detective, I think I'd rather deal with this tomorrow, after all.

GORDON

(Pauses) All right. Say two PM? GCPD Headquarters?

BRUCE

Fine.

GORDON

Hands Bruce a business card.

GORDON (CONT'D)

Watch yourself So… Sir. The city's changed, and not for the better.

BRUCE

So I hear.

INT. CLINIC WAITING AREA – NIGHT

ALFRED

…Really can't thank you enough for your assistance, Mr. Bradley.

SLAM

Aah, ferget it. He almost handled it without me. Explain me something? You care about him like he was your kid. But he isn't.

ALFRED

His parents were my employers. After their passing—

SLAM

Murders—

ALFRED

As you like. I was named executor of the Wayne estate. And, in the absence of any living relatives, young Master Bruce's legal guardian.

SLAM

Only now he's of age. Where's that leave you?

ALFRED

In his employ, for as long as he requires. After that, I'll confess I've not given the matter much thought. I'm afraid I may no longer be quite spry enough for the sort of intelligence work I once performed. I could always return to the stage, I suppose.

SLAM

(Laughs) Al, if the day ever comes when you need a job, I could always take you on as a private investigator.

ALFRED

Is that offer genuine?

SLAM

Sure. Any time. Least I can do for the man who saved my life. Wanna start tomorrow?

ALFRED

Not I, Sir. But I do believe that such an offer would appeal enormously to young Master Bruce.

FADE TO BLACK


ACT THREE

THOMPKINS CLINIC. INT. – NIGHT

SLAM

Him? Mind telling me why a kid like that would have any interest in hooking up with a guy like me? If he knows the first thing about investigative work, he knows that it can take months, sometimes years, to solve a case. If he's got eyes in his head, he's gotta realize that I'm not exactly on PI Monthly's 'Most sought-after' list these days. And if he doesn't know the first thing about investigative work, or don't got eyes in his head, then why would I want him in the first place?

ALFRED

Perhaps these are questions best asked of Master Bruce.

BRUCE has been glancing in their direction throughout the exchange. At their approach, he struggles to sit up straighter.

BRUCE

Mr. Bradley? I just wanted to thank you for—

SLAM

Ehh. Gordon's a good sort. One of the few boys on the force who's not on the take, and can't be scared off. Wouldn'ta put it past someone t'send him over and, um, forget to tell him a few things about your connection with this area. Gordon's not impressed by money or reputation. If you'd gotten him angry enough, he coulda hauled you in for obstructin' justice. He couldn'ta made it stick, but he coulda kept you in custody overnight. And then, when you and your lawyers raised holy hell, well Gordon might just have found himself busted down ta traffic cop, you follow me?

BRUCE

I wouldn't have—

SLAM

They didn't know that, did they? So. Alfred tells me you want to be a private investigator.

BRUCE

That's right.

SLAM

Not meaning to cast aspersions on your sanity, you understand, but d'you mind telling me why a guy like you, who can make a few phone calls and have the top names in the business busting their chops for you would want to get involved in the dirty work? And, it IS dirty work—don't let the TV shows fool you on that score.

BRUCE

I haven't watched TV in almost a decade, Mr. Bradley. As far as my reasons, the best one I can give you is that they never found my parents' killer. If you were in Gotham ten years ago, then you have to know what kind of media pressure was brought to bear on the police at that time. The investigation dragged on for months. But the trail went cold. I'm not saying that the investigators didn't do their jobs. But for them, that's probably all it was. A job. For me, it's personal. Mr. Bradley, I know how old the file is, now. I'm not expecting to solve the case next week. As it stands, most of what I know about investigative work comes from reading Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie, Charles Martel, and Andrew Forrester, Junior. And I've picked up a lot, that way. But book-smarts aren't going to give me the skills I need.

SLAM

Well, ya got that right, anyway. Look, kid, I'd like ta offer you a job…

BRUCE starts to smile. Extends arm in anticipation of handshake.

SLAM (CONT'D)

…But the truth is I'm… well, I'm something of a joke in the industry these days. 'Slam Bradley. Yeah, he sure was something back in the day, but now he's just a washed-up old drunk.' Kid, my marriage is over in all but name. I got two kids I haven't seen in over a year, and I haven't had a new case in nearly that long. Nowadays, I can barely afford the overhead on my office. As for taking on a rookie employee, hell, if I was bringing in anyone, it'd have to be someone with enough of a name to bring in some new business. Whattayou got for me?

BRUCE

Mr. Bradley, I'm… I'm the CEO of Wayne Enterprises. Do you really think I'm looking for a salary? I want to learn the ins and outs of the field. Let me tell you something: joke in the industry or not, you've got the respect of the two people whose opinion carries the most weight with me. If you're looking for a new case… (Lowers voice) from what I saw today, I think that Wayne Enterprises is currently the target of corporate espionage. (In normal tone) Want to check into it?

SLAM (to ALFRED)

This kid's for real.

ALFRED

Indeed

BRUCE extends his hand again. SLAM grasps it firmly.

INT. WAYNE ENTERPRISES RECORDS DEPARTMENT – DAY

SELINA KYLE is sorting through files. One side of the room is a reading area equipped with long wooden tables and Windsor chairs. FIONA MAXWELL enters, with BRUCE in tow.

FIONA

We've found you some help, Selina.

SELINA

About time. Hi, I'm Selina Kyle.

BRUCE

Bruce.

SELINA

That's it? Just 'Bruce'?

FIONA

Well, I'll leave you two to get acquainted. Selina, you'll show him the ropes?

SELINA

Sure.

As the door closes, SELINA looks at BRUCE.

SELINA (CONT'D)

OK, what's the deal?

BRUCE

Sorry?

SELINA

Hey, I saw Fox give you the grand tour, yesterday. Now, Fiona's tossing you in here like you're some new temp. Did you swipe the last Boston Cream at the shareholders meeting, or am I on the new Candid Camera?

BRUCE

Neither. This was Lucius', I mean Mr. Fox's idea. He said something about how spending time in different area of the company would—

SELINA

Give you an appreciation for the workings of this place? (Laughs) He pulled that speech on me, too. Six months later and I'm developing an appreciation for the skills of the last file clerk. That person had a real knack… for goofing off. Well, I doubt you'll be stuck here for very long, you being the CEO and all. Let me show you what I do, down here, and when you move on to the next department, maybe you can do me a favor.

BRUCE

Such as?

SELINA darts behind a Windsor chair, clutching two of its wooden turnings as though they were bars. She "rattles" them despairingly.

SELINA

Get me out of here! Before I die of boredom!

BRUCE

(Laughs)

LUCIUS enters, looking grim.

LUCIUS

Excuse me, Ms. Kyle. Bruce, could I see you in private, please?

BRUCE

But, Selina was just—

SELINA

Certainly, Mr. Fox. (As BRUCE meets her eyes, SELINA mouths "Save Me" exaggeratedly.)

INT. LUCIUS' OFFICE – DAY

LUCIUS

Slam… Bradley? You went and hired Slam Bradley? What was this, some sort of whim?

BRUCE

He's got a great record.

LUCIUS

Records tell you what a person was like twenty years ago. Sure, he knows his job, and he gets results… but he's also got a drinking problem. He doesn't play by the book—

BRUCE

From what I've heard, neither do most of the police in this city.

LUCIUS

Be that as it may, Wayne Enterprises cannot be seen to have a connection with a man of his reputation.

BRUCE

So you're ordering me to… rescind the offer I made him.

LUCIUS

For the good of our corporate image, Bruce, I strongly recommend it.

BRUCE

(Silence)

LUCIUS

You're disturbed.

BRUCE

We shook hands.

LUCIUS

You're the CEO, Bruce. The final decision rests with you. But you are free to… umm… delegate the dirty work, if you'd prefer.

BRUCE

Thank-you for your input, Mr. Fox. I'll take your concerns under advisement. And now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go off some place and read Julius Caesar for tomorrow's class.

Exits without looking back.

EXT. HUDSON UNIVERSITY STUDENT SERVICES CENTRE – DAY

INT. HUDSON UNIVERSITY STUDENT SERVICES CENTRE – DAY

BRUCE, VICKI, and HARVEY are seated in the cafeteria with a pile of colored flyers. BRUCE is bent over an introduction to psychology text.

VICKI

…So I asked if they needed photographers and they said yes!

HARVEY

That's great, Vic. (picks up topmost flyer) Hey! The drama society's putting on Jekyll and Hyde. Want to come to the auditions?

VICKI

As long as I don't actually have to get up there and sing.

BRUCE

(Without looking up) You're prelaw. Are you sure those frivolous extra-curriculars won't cut into your study time?

HARVEY

Yes, Pop. Bruce, you're coming, too, right? If I do make a complete fool of myself, I'd rather you were there to pay off the paparazzi.

BRUCE

I can't.

VICKI

Why? Your board of directors will fire you if you miss a day?

HARVEY

(Laughing) Good one, Vicki. She's right, Bruce. You're eighteen. You're a kid. This is your year for finding out just who you are and what you want to do with yourself.

BRUCE

I did that, years ago.

HARVEY

Is everything, you know, okay?

BRUCE

(Shuts book) Everything is fine.

VICKI

Great! Then you can join us at the drama auditions tomorrow afternoon. Maybe even try out yourself. Loosen up a little.

HARVEY

More competition. Thanks, Vic.

BRUCE

No. I can't. I'll be busy.

VICKI

You know, I think I liked you better when you dinged my car. How badly do you have to mess up before you remember you're human?

BRUCE

I'd say we've just about exhausted the possibilities of this conversation.

(Picks up book and heads for exit.)

HARVEY

Bruce! Hold on. (To Vicki) What was that all about?

VICKI

Beats me. Maybe someone snuck carob powder into his Cocoa Krispies today. Did we say anything to set him off?

HARVEY

You mean, before you mentioned the car? I don't think so. But something's bugging him. I hate mysteries.

EXT. PARK ROW – DAY A row of rundown townhouses. A sign in front of one of the seedier proclaims Samuel Bradley, Private Investigator.

INT. SLAM'S OFFICE – DAY

SLAM is whistling to himself as he busies himself at his desk. BRUCE enters looking miserable.

SLAM

Right on time, Kid.

BRUCE

(Tries to smile)

SLAM

Your people didn't go for the idea.

BRUCE

I…

SLAM

(Waits)

BRUCE

I'm really… I

SLAM

Ahh… don't sweat it, kid. What's one more disappointment?

(Pulls fresh bottle of cognac out of desk drawer)

SLAM (CONT'D)

Want some?

BRUCE

(Shakes his head)

SLAM

Smart. Knew you were smart, kid. OK. Open the top drawer of that file cabinet and pull out the first folder you find. It should be the Sullivan case. Look it over, tell me what strikes you.

BRUCE

You mean, you still want to… I-I thought--

SLAM

What? I'd only take you on if you landed me that job? Kid, I thought you knew. Sure, the gig would've been good news fer me, but that ain't the only reason I told you to come round.

BRUCE

Isn't it?

SLAM

No. It ain't. I owed a favor. It got called in, last night.

BRUCE

Y-you mean Alfred

SLAM

Gold star for you, Kiddo. He saved my life. I may be a washed-up old has-been, but I pay my debts.

BRUCE freezes

SLAM (CONT'D)

Aw, Kid, don't take it that way. I wasn't thinking about…

BRUCE runs out of office. Door bangs shut behind him.

INT. WAYNE MANOR – EVENING

ALFRED has set the table for two in the dining room. BRUCE enters, sits down, and tucks in.

ALFRED

Detective Gordon rang the manor at two-thirty, today.

BRUCE

Oh.

ALFRED

Indeed, Sir. Oh. Apparently you failed to keep your scheduled appointment.

BRUCE

I'll deal with it.

ALFRED

Also, a Miss Vale called for you.

BRUCE

Vicki? What did she want?

ALFRED

I did not wish to pry into what may have been a private matter, but she did ask whether you might reconsider attending the auditions, tomorrow.

BRUCE

(Silence)

ALFRED

Master Bruce?

BRUCE

No.

ALFRED

Perhaps it's not my place, Sir, but have you considered that, given your current schedule, an extra-curricular activity might be of some benefit?

BRUCE

Between classes and Wayne Enterprises, I don't have time.

ALFRED

And your position with Mr. Bradley.

BRUCE

That… isn't going to work out.

ALFRED

Indeed, Sir? Might one inquire as to why?

BRUCE

No.

ALFRED

Sir, I might point out to you that commitments, once made, ought not be broken easily.

BRUCE

I don't want to discuss it.

ALFRED

That, Master Bruce, is up to you. Now, regarding Mr. Bradley, what has changed between last night and this one?

BRUCE

I said I don't want to talk about it.

ALFRED

Your wishes, Sir, are your prerogative. We are going to discuss this.

BRUCE

(Mumbles) I'm tired of this

ALFRED

I beg your pardon?

BRUCE

I said, I'm tired of this.

Throws down napkin and heads for door.

ALFRED

Sir! Sit. Down!

BRUCE

I'm not a child, anymore, Alfred. And you're sure as hell not my father. So lay… OFF!

Both freeze, shocked. ALFRED recovers, wheels smartly on his heels, and marches silently into the kitchen. BRUCE sits, rests his right elbow on the table, and covers his eyes with his right hand.

FADE TO BLACK


ACT FOUR

INT. WAYNE MANOR DINING ROOM – MORNING

BRUCE enters, finds place set for one with three pancakes on plate. BRUCE digs in, then pauses, realising that the pancakes are still warm. Carries plate into kitchen. Alfred is seated with a cup of coffee.

ALFRED

Did you require anything else, Sir?

BRUCE

Why are you eating in here?

ALFRED

I had thought that it would be preferable, Sir, in light of recent events.

BRUCE

Umm. Yeah. About last night—

ALFRED

Not at all, Sir. Upon reflection, I must confess that it would appear that I have presumed over much, these past years. You are no longer a child, and it is high time that I stopped treating you like one.

BRUCE

Alfred, you haven't treated me like a child since I was about twelve. Last night, I acted like one. It won't happen again.

ALFRED

Come, now, Master Bruce, a gentleman's word is his bond. One ought not make commitments that one will be unable to keep.

BRUCE

What happens if one makes a commitment… and fully intends to keep it, and then discovers that there are… complications involved that would… make it impossible to honor his word?

ALFRED

I believe that, in circumstances such as you describe, one would not be held accountable. However, Master Bruce, one must always strive to determine whether upholding one's commitments, in a given instance, is truly impossible… or merely inconvenient.

BRUCE sits down at kitchen table with plate.

ALFRED (CONT'D)

Master Bruce, those pancakes must be stone cold. Allow me to rewarm them.

BRUCE

A minute ago you said you were going to stop treating me like a child. If I want them warmed, what makes you think I can't do it myself?

ALFRED

Recollections of the din of smoke detectors, which heralded your prior attempts, Sir. Incidentally, Master Bruce, it has come to my attention that a pankration master has taken up residence in Gotham and is available for private lessons. As I understand it, promising martial arts students frequently have nightly sessions with the man, although with your current responsibilities, the added time requirement may well prove to be too much—

BRUCE

Hold on, Alfred. I might be able to work that. If I do my course reading during my free periods, and don't leave papers for the last minute… and Lucius has been handling Wayne Enterprises just fine without me, there's no reason why he shouldn't continue with the day-to-day running of the corporation. I mean, it's not like anyone expected me to take over, right now… and I still have three weeks to decide if I want to drop courses… maybe… if I took a reduced load, that might be enough… could you arrange an appointment?

ALFRED

Regrettably, no, Master Bruce. You see, there is no pankration master. I confess I concocted said individual out of whole cloth, as it were. However, now that you have managed to free up a considerable block of time, I might point out to you that you ought consider attending those auditions this evening, after all.

BRUCE

(Stunned silence)

ALFRED

I believe firmly, Sir, that my own experience on the London stage proved an immeasurable asset to my subsequent intelligence work. The decision is yours, of course.

BRUCE

I'll think it over. I'd better get moving.

ALFRED

Your breakfast…

BRUCE

I'll get drive-through

ALFRED

You will do no such thing.

Hands BRUCE brown paper bag.

ALFRED (CONT'D)

Do not protest. Do not argue. Do not attend class on an empty stomach. Sir.

BRUCE accepts bag, with sheepish smile.

BRUCE

You made this before you knew I would come in here to try to apologize.

ALFRED

Untrue, Sir. I prepared it before you came downstairs, yes. But I flatter myself that, after all this time, I gained some insight into your likely behaviour, following such words as were exchanged last night.

BRUCE (smiling faintly)

What if you'd been wrong?

ALFRED

In that case, Master Bruce, you would not have deserved the contents of that bag. Good day, Sir.

EXT. APARO EXPRESSWAY – DAY

BRUCE's Mercedes shifts into the lane for Hudson University, then abruptly switches back to the lane headed for downtown Gotham.

EXT. WAYNE ENTERPRISES – DAY

BRUCE emerges from parked Mercedes, dashes into WE building.

INT. WAYNE ENTERPRISES – LUCIUS' OFFICE – DAY

LUCIUS is at his desk on the telephone.

LUCIUS

I don't care how you beef up security, Sal, just get it done. We cannot get caught with our…

There is a knock on the door. Before LUCIUS can acknowledge it, BRUCE bursts in.

LUCIUS (CONT'D)

I'll have to call you back, Sal.

Hangs up phone.

LUCIUS (CONT'D)

Bruce, forgive me, but aren't you supposed to be in class?

BRUCE

This is more important. Lucius, regarding our conversation yesterday. You told me that ultimately, the final say was mine, correct?

LUCIUS

That's right. I did.

BRUCE

Fine. Mr. Bradley will be here tomorrow morning at ten a.m. You will arrange to have someone brief him on what's been going on here in terms of security issues. Mr. Bradley will have the full cooperation of every officer and employee of this company. If the board objects to paying his salary, I will pay it out of my own pocket, or they can deduct it from mine—whatever's easier. If anyone has a problem with Mr. Bradley's methods or any of his… personal issues, they can bring it up with me, directly. Or they can bring it up with you, and you can bring it up with me. That's my final say. I trust you'll back me?

LUCIUS

Repeat that last sentence.

BRUCE (blinks)

I trust you'll back me?

LUCIUS

Without the question mark at the end. It makes you sound insecure.

BRUCE

I trust you'll back me.

LUCIUS

That's better. Sir. Well, if you're that adamant—

BRUCE

Oh, I am.

LUCIUS

Fine. Then you have my full support.

BRUCE

Looks at watch

BRUCE (CONT'D)

I also have seventeen minutes to get to Hudson U if I don't want to be late. See you in the afternoon.

Exits office at dignified gait. Before door shuts, running feet are heard in the hallway.

INT. MERCEDES – DAY

Bruce sits in drivers seat hyperventilating.

EXT. HUDSON UNIVERSITY STUDENT SERVICES CENTRE – DAY

BRUCE exits alone. SLAM is waiting for him.

BRUCE

Mr. Bradley.

SLAM

Fox called an hour ago. Said you were expecting me tomorrow morning. When were you going to let me know?

BRUCE

I was going to stop off at your office on my way back to the company. Is something wrong?

SLAM

You didn't think to ask me if I still wanted the job? You think I like being jerked around? First it's on, then it's off, now it's on again? I got my pride, boy. If it was charity I was after, I'd apply at the Wayne Foundation, not Wayne Enterprises.

BRUCE

It's not charity.

SLAM

No? Then what would you call it?

BRUCE

Giri

SLAM

Come again?

BRUCE

It's Japanese. It means… it's the same reason you agreed to take me on, the other night. And it's why I should have stood up for you yesterday.

SLAM

That all you got, kid?

BRUCE

No, there's more. I didn't ask you to come on board in the first place as some kind of… make-work project. There's something going on at WE that needs looking into. And even when Lucius was trying to convince me that bringing you on was a mistake, he told me that you don't follow normal procedures—

SLAM

Neither do the scum I bring in.

BRUCE

He also mentioned, ummm…

SLAM

Pantomimes guzzling from a bottle

SLAM (CONT'D)

Right?

BRUCE

Well…

SLAM

One thing you gotta learn fast in this line of work, Kid: lotsa times, you'll end up telling people things they don't want to hear. When that happens, one trick to get it over with is to just come out and say it. Fox told you I drink, right?

BRUCE

Yes

SLAM

Considering the shape I was in when we met, how big a shock was that to you?

BRUCE

Considering the shape I was in when we met, how much do you think I noticed?

SLAM

If you noticed how much cognac came out of a broken bottle, you knew damned well what happened to the rest of it.

BRUCE

Fine. I knew. What I was trying to say is that when he was listing your negative points, he didn't mention incompetence. If, like you said before, you're a 'joke' in the industry, and despite that, Lucius still couldn't attack your capabilities, I think that says something. (Pauses) I should've said that to him yesterday.

SLAM

You'll learn, Kid. Ten tomorrow?

BRUCE

Yes.

SLAM

I'll be there.

BRUCE

Starts to say something, then stops.

SLAM

And I'll be sober. Don't worry. Tell Al I said 'Hi', for me, willya?

BRUCE

Sure.

INT. GCPD – DAY

OFFICER FLASS

Jim! Call for you on three.

GORDON

Got it. (Picks up receiver) Gordon here. Oh, Mr. Wayne. No, no, I understand. I'm usually in fairly early… Fine. Eight tomorrow morning it is. I'm sorry, no; we don't have them in custody, yet. Right. Tomorrow, then.

Hangs up phone

INT. HUDSON U STUDENT THEATER - EVENING

HARVEY and VICKI are talking together. Harvey is eying the competition.

HARVEY

Did that guy bring his own sheet music?

VICKI

Relax. You'll be fine.

HARVEY

Now, that one I've seen on TV, shilling Zesti.

VICKI

Well there you go. All that soda must be bad for the vocal cords.

HARVEY

Really?

VICKI

How would I know? I'm a journalism major. But I'll bet it would make one heck of an investigative report.

HARVEY spies BRUCE bending over a signup sheet. Walks over to him.

HARVEY

Thought you couldn't make it, tonight.

BRUCE

So did I.

VICKI

So…

BRUCE

So?

VICKI

Do you have any clue how annoying that is?

BRUCE

Look, I know I was a jerk, yesterday. I had a lot on my mind. Someone suggested this might be a way to relieve some tension.

HARVEY

You mean, by letting frivolous extra-curriculars cut into your study time?

BRUCE

Alright. I deserved that. I guess I'll be seeing you around campus, then.

HARVEY

Hey, whoa, whoa, wait a minute. You know, we're never going to have a decent conversation if you start walking off just when things get interesting.

ROMAN (off-camera)

Is there a Bruce Wayne… or a Wayne Bruce around here?

BRUCE (turning in the direction of the voice)

I'm Bruce Wayne

HARVEY

And here we go, again…

ROMAN

Roman Sionis. Senior make-up designer. Notice you put your name on the signup sheet. Do you have any experience?

BRUCE

Not really.

ROMAN

That's what I was afraid of. Let me see your schedule, afterwards. We'll need to get together a few times, so I can teach you some of the basics.

Moves on.

VICKI

Make-up?

BRUCE

Make-up.

VICKI

Why?

BRUCE

Why not? Look, everyone talks about the "magic" of theater. I'd like to find out a few of the tricks. You never know when something like that might come in handy.

VOICE (off-camera)

Harvey Dent.

HARVEY

I'm up! Wish me luck.

BRUCE

Break a leg, Dent.

VICKI

Knock 'em dead, Harv.

INT. WAYNE ENTERPRISES – DAY

FIONA

Oh, Selina, before you go, if you wouldn't mind shredding these?

SELINA

Sure, Ms. Maxwell, no problem. (Mumbled) No problem at all. Thank-you so much for handing this to me at four fifty-five. If I miss my train…

Carries stack of documents down hall into shredding room, still muttering.

Close-up of woman's hand feeding pages into shredder. Close-up of same woman's hand slipping one sheaf of papers into briefcase and snapping it shut.

FADE TO BLACK