Hello, loves! And now the moment you have all been waiting for, or not depending on how excited you were to read this film noir/Dashiell Hammett tribute. I know I am so excited to write this, so you better like it. 'Kay now, I'm going to set the scene so we can get on will this.
The colour changes, becoming slightly grainy and desaturated. Mysterious 40s music begins to play. Our set for this scene is the town square. A shadow emerges from an alley.
Noir-Authoress: (V.O.) It was late one winter night. The snow wouldn't cease falling and the wind was harsh.
A figure follows the shadow out of the alley and into the snow. The figure is wrapped up in a loose overcoat and a dark grey fedora covers its face. The Camera zooms in to the shadowed face. As the figure walks into the square, it looks up and we see the Noir-Authoress with a lit cigarette (it's not real, it's one of those trick cigarettes, so no worries. Cancer sticks are bad kids!) hanging from her lips. She looks across the street to see a figure exiting a carriage and entering the tavern.
Noir-Authoress: (V.O.) Yeah, that's me. The name's Authoress (dramatic chord). No last name, just Authoress. I got a job from one of the top dogs in the story. The pay wasn't great, but a job was a job. I was to investigate what could have been shady goings on in the town tavern. And this figure was my first lead.
The Noir-Authoress flicks her cigarette into a snow bank and makes her way across the square and into the tavern. Due to the late hour, the tavern is empty and the lamps are set low. Sasha is behind the bar wiping glasses.
Noir-Authoress: (V.O.) Sasha was a good friend of mine. If anything was going on, that Russian would know.
Noir-Authoress removes her overcoat to show that she's wearing a green striped shirt with a soft white collar, a green necktie, brown shoes, and a dark grey suit. The fedora still partially covers her face. She nods at Sasha and he acknowledges her with a wave of his bar rag. He throws down the towel and reaches for a glass. Noir-Authoress comes over to the bar and glances to a closed of lit corner. She nods her head toward the corner.
Noir-Authoress: Who's in there?
Sasha gives her the drink and looks nervously around.
Sasha: (nervously) I don't know.
Noir-Authoress: Don't give me that. What are you hiding?
Sasha looks around quickly and leans in close.
Sasha: (quietly) One of them came in just a few minutes ago. Gaston had called for him to come.
Noir-Authoress: (looking over at the corner) So Gaston and a stranger, huh?
Sasha: That's all I know.
Noir-Authoress: The other one ever been here before?
Sasha: No. I have never seen him.
Noir-Authoress: (downs drink) Alright, thanks Sasha. You're a doll.
She quietly makes her way over to the closed off corner. She sits at a table close to them so she can here every thing they say.
Since this is film noir and takes place in the 30s/40s guess what. That's right. Gaston is wearing a suit. If you've got a mental image, it might look a little weird. He's wearing a dark brown pinstripe suit, a yellow shirt, and a red necktie. Lefou is sitting beside him guzzling a beer and looking a little like Joel Cairo. The third man in this trio is Monsieur D'Arque, as voiced by Tony Jay, who is now dead. All mourn. Anyways…
Non-Film Noir Authoress: TONY JAY!
She glomps Monsieur D'Arque, knocking him out of his chair.
Non-Film Noir Authoress: Ok, carry on.
So D'Arque and Gaston are talking about an evil scheme. Our private eye is listening intently.
D'Arque: I don't usually leave the asylum in the middle of the night, so you'd better make this worth my while.
Gaston pulls out a pile of greenbacks hands them to D'Arque.
Gaston: Is seven Gs enough?
D'Arque flips through the bills.
D'Arque: You have my undivided attention.
Gaston: Alright. I've got my heart set on marrying Belle, but she needs a little…persuasion…
Lefou: Turned him down flat.
Gaston smacks Lefou. For those of you counting at home, I have no clue what number we're up to now. Sorry. Just take the shot and move on.
Gaston: Everyone knows her fathers got a screw loose. Even tonight, he was in here raving about some beast in a castle. (chuckles)
D'Arque: Maurice is harmless.
Gaston: Yeah, but Belle would do anything to keep her father from being thrown in the nut house.
Lefou: Even marry him.
Gaston: How would you like some cement overshoes?
Lefou mimics zipping his lips.
D'Arque: Let me get this straight. You want me to lock up Maurice in order to get Belle to marry you?
D'Arque: That's despicable. I love it!
Gaston: So you'll do it?
D'Arque: Of course, but it will cost you a little extra…
Gaston: An extra three Gs when the job is done.
D'Arque: The Asylum thanks you for your contribution.
He pulls back his chair and looks at the table that was just occupied by Authoress. It's obviously empty. Noir- Authoress has slipped out and into the street. She pulls up the collar on her overcoat. A pair of officers stop her.
Dundy: Where you going?
Noir-Authoress: Get your paws off me.
Sgt. Polhaus: Be reasonable, Ress.
Noir-Authoress: What do you want?
Dundy: What do you know about the disappearance of this girl?
He shows her a picture of Belle.
Noir-Authoress: Who wants to know?
Dundy: Cut the questions. We know that she was a good friend of yours. So just what do you know about it?
Noir-Authoress: Just about the same as everyone.
Dundy: No one's seen her for days.
Noir-Authoress: Just what are you implying?
Dundy grabs Noir-Authoress' collar.
Dundy: Where were you last week?
Noir-Authoress: I told you to keep your paws off me. I didn't kidnap her.
Dundy: We didn't say anything about kidnap her. Now tell me what you know!
Noir-Authoress: Hey, Tom what's itching your boy-friend?
Sgt. Polhaus: Come on now, Ress.
Dundy pokes Noir-Authoress in the shoulder.
Dundy: Just this. You were seen walking into the forest with Belle a week ago. We want to know where she is.
Noir-Authoress: Ha! What do you know? Just because I was last seen with her you think that I had something to do with her disappearance. Well I didn't! Get that through your thick heads!
Sgt. Polhaus: Calm down, Ress.
Noir-Authoress grins at the pair.
Noir-Authoress: I know where I stand now. I'm sorry I got up on my hind legs, but you birds coming in and trying to put the work on me made me nervous. Her disappearance bothered me, and then you birds cracking foxy. That's all right now, though, now that I know what you're up to.
Sgt. Polhaus: Forget it.
The too walk off with Noir-Authoress grinning after them. She looks to the side and heads into a dark alley. Two people are there waiting for her.
Person 1: Did you get the information?
Noir-Authoress hands her a sheet of paper and disappears into the shadows.
Person 2: How many alter egos do you have?
The figures step into the light.
Authoress: As many as needed, but that one's my favourite.
Genie: Okay. What's our next step?
Authoress: Well, Tom and Dundy think something's up, so we've got to be careful. I've got a job for you.
Genie salutes smartly.
Genie: Ma'am, yes, ma'am!
Authoress: I need you to keep Maurice busy for a couple months. Can you do that?
Genie: Ma'am, yes, ma'am! Ma'am?
Genie: Can I call you Ress?
Genie: One more thing.
Genie: What's in the note?
Authoress: The, uh, the stuff that dreams are made of.
That's the end of the film noir tribute. The conversation between Film Noir Authoress, Dundy, and Sgt. Polhaus is inspired by Dashiell Hammett and FNA's last line in that convo was taken directly from his story: The Maltese Falcon. There were some other things, but I'm sure you want to get on with the story. So disclaimers later. BTW: We're back to colour and Gaston is in his regular outfit. Bonus points to the people who found the Gay Puree ref.
Maurice is in the cottage packing to leave.
Maurice: If no one will help me, then I'll go back alone. I don't care what it takes. I'll find that castle and somehow I'll get her out of there.
There is a knock at the door. Maurice opens it to find Genie floating there looking like a game show host. You know Gene Rayburn or Richard Dawson. Whatever works for you. Did I just seriously date myself with those references? In my defense, I watched a lot of Game Show Network when I was little.
Genie: You've just won an all expense paid trip around the world!
Maurice: But what about Belle?
Genie: Well, do you know where the castle was?
Maurice: Well, no…not exactly…
Genie: Then we need to search the whole world!
Maurice: I'll do anything to find Belle.
Genie: Then away we go!
They disappear to parts unknown.
Gaston pulls up to the cottage just as they disappear.
Gaston: Maurice? Belle?
Lefou: Huh, I guess their not here. Oh well, better luck next time.
Gaston: Oh hell no, we're not getting out of it that easily. Lefou, don't move from that spot until the instant they get back.
Lefou: Both of them or just one of them?
Gaston: Just one of them.
He jumps on the back of a wagon and rides away.
Lefou: Aw man.
He kicks the side of the house and snow falls on his poor little head.
Belle, Footstool, and Phillipe are all playing in the snow. Beast, Lumiere, and Cogsworth are watching from a balcony.
Beast: I'm getting this weird feeling. I haven't felt like this about anyone before. I wanna do something for her! (kinda discouraged) But what?
Cogsworth: Well, there's the usual things-flowers, chocolates, promises you don't intend to keep...
Ha ha. I love that line.
Lumiere: Ahh, no no. It has to be something very special. Something that sparks her inter-wait a minute! Show her the library! Bitches love libraries!
Cut to int. hallway leading to library. Beast and Belle are alone.
Beast: Belle, there's something I want to show you. (Begins to open the door, then stops.) But first, you have to close your eyes. (She looks at him questioningly.) It's a surprise.
Belle closes her eyes, and Beast waves his hand in front of her. Then he opens the door. He leads her in.
Belle: (Just as she enters the room) Can I open them?
Beast: Did I say you could open them? No. So take a chill pill, hold your horses and wait a minute.
Beast runs to draw back the curtains. He skids to a stop, but not soon enough. He slides through the window and out into the ground.
Beast: I'm okay, I think.
Belle: Now can I open them?
Beast runs up flights of stairs, and an escalator, and stops at an elevator with a sinister looking bellhop outside it.
Bellhop: Going down, sir?
Beast: Um, actually no.
Bellhop: But it's fast.
Beast: Well, ok.
The Bellhop is happy, almost too happy.
Bellhop: If you'll just take a seat sir.
Beast: Um, okay. Is that a seat belt?
Bellhop: Just a precaution sir.
The Bellhop exits the elevator.
Bellhop: Have a nice fall sir.
He's cut off because the elevator is free falling 13 stories and he's screaming like a little girl. The elevator goes up and down a couple of times until it stops at Beast's floor.
Rod Serling: (V.O.) A warm welcome back to those of you who made it, and a friendly word of warning, something you won't find in any guidebook: the next time you check into a deserted hotel on the dark side of Hollywood, make sure you know just what kind of vacancy you're filling, or you may find yourself a permanent resident…of the Twilight Zone.
Authoress glomps Rod, knocking him to the ground.
Authoress: I love you, you short little creepy Twilight Zone guy!
Rod: (addressing the audience again, this time from the floor) A word of caution for all of you. Next time you're in an enchanted castle in the middle of a ridiculous parody, don't forget to look out for…the Authoress.
Glass shatters from the pitch of the Authoress's squee and Rod disappears.
Beast: I think you murdered my eardrums.
Authoress: (not paying any attention whatsoever to Beast) I can totally check that off my bucket list now!
Beast: Uh huh…tell me again why I had that weird elevator installed again?
Authoress: Because you promised Disney you would test out the ride.
Beast: Oh, right.
He runs back into the room and pulls back the curtains. Belle reacts to the light as it floods into the room.
Belle: Can I open them now?
Beast: All right. Now.
Belle opens her eyes and the camera pulls back to reveal the gigantic library filled with books. There can't be that many books. Some must be doubles or fakes or he must have a lot of encyclopedias.
Belle: I can't believe it. I've never seen so many books in all my life!
Beast: You-you like it?
Belle: It's wonderful.
Beast: Then it's yours.
Beast: Oh, thank you so much!
Cut to Belle and Beast in background, with Objects including Chip in foreground watching them.
Cogsworth: Oh, would you look at that?
Lumiere: Ha ha! I knew it would work.
Chip: What? What works?
Cogsworth: It's very encouraging.
Featherduster: Isn't this exciting!
Chip: I didn't see anything.
Mrs. Potts: Come along, Chip. There's chores to be done in the kitchen.
Chip: But what are they talking about? What's going on? Will someone explain this to me?
Objects walk away. Fade to breakfast table with Belle at one end and Beast at the other, with Mrs. Potts between them. Belle is served breakfast, and as she begins to eat, she looks at Beast, gobbling up his food with no table manners whatsoever. Chip laughs, but Mrs. Potts shoots him an admonishing look. Belle turns away and tries to ignore it, but Chip comes to the rescue.
Super Chip to the rescue! Seriously he should have a cape or something…but I don't know where he'd wear it…he doesn't exactly have shoulders. Eh, I digress.
He nudges the spoon with his nose, and Beast reaches out for it (very 3-D-ishly). Belle looks at him in wonder as he tries to eat with the spoon, but he has little success. Finally, Belle puts down her spoon and lifts her bowl as if in a toast. Beast looks at the compromise and does the same. They both begin to sip their breakfast out of their bowls. Fade to courtyard where Belle and Beast are feeding the birds.
Belle: Feed the birds
Tuppence a bag.
Tuppence a bag
Authoress: Uh, Belle? Wrong song…again.
Belle: What? Oh right. Sorry.
There's something sweet
And almost kind
But he was mean
And he was coarse and unrefined.
But now he's dear
And so unsure,
I wonder why I didn't see it there before.
Belle is trying to attract some birds to Beast, who shoves a handful of seed at them. Finally, she takes a handful and gently spreads it out, creating a trail. Like Hansel and Gretel. Except not. One bird lands in his hands, and Beast looks up mad thrilled.
Beast: She glanced this way
I thought I saw
And when we touched
She didn't shudder at my paw
No it can't be
I'll just ignore
But then she's never looked
at me that way before.
Translation: She totes thinks I'm hot. She wants me.
Belle has ducked around a tree, leaving Beast with the birds. She begins to look doubtful again, but turns her head around the tree and laughs. Beast is covered with birds.
Beast: F-ing birds.
Belle: New, and a bit alarming
Who'd have ever thought that this could be?
True, that he's no Prince Charming
But there's something in him
that I simply didn't see.
Belle throws a snowball at Beast, who had looked at her proudly after the birds flew away. He begins to gather a large pile of snow. We cut to the Objects, looking out of a window at the two. In the background, Belle throws another snowball at Beast, who drops his huge pile of snow on his head. He chases her around a tree, but she ducks around the other side and sneaks up on him from behind.
Lumiere: Well who'd have thought?
Mrs. Potts: Well bless my soul.
Cogsworth: And who'd have known?
Mrs. Potts: Well who indeed?
Lumiere: And who'd have guessed they'd come together on their own?
Mrs. Potts: It's so peculiar
All: We'll wait and see
A few days more
There may be something there
that wasn't there before
Fade to den where Belle sits in front of a roaring fire and reads to Beast. Objects inc. Chip watch from doorway.
Cogsworth: Yes, perhaps there's something there that wasn't there before.
Mrs. Potts: There may be something there that wasn't there before.
Chip: What's there, mama?
Mrs. Potts: I'll tell you when you're older.
Chip: Will someone tell me what the (censored)'s going on? I mean seriously! I'm a supporting character! I should have some sort of knowledge of what's going on. I may be a "precocious child" character, but really. I've been turned into a (censored)ing teacup. A TEA CUP! I think I deserve to know something. I'm so sick of being the only one in this (censored) castle not knowing what's going on! I mean everyone gets it, even Cogsworth! And Cogsworth is a socially retarded monkey!
The other objects just stare at him.
And that's the end of this chapter. Hope you liked it. Who would of guess that Chip would have such a mouth on his little teacup self? Next up. the romantical chapter including the much anticipated song 'Beauty and the Beast.' See ya real soon!