LEGEND - FOUR GOBLINS

1. EXT. FOREST - NIGHT

The setting is utterly tranquil and majestic, and there is something magic in the air. Numerous small animals frolic about. Squirrels, deer, rabbits, mice. We see hints of something bright and white flashing over the brow of a distant hill.

Nearby, BLUNDER, a small figure wearing an oversized horned helmet that hides his head completely, is walking along a shallow stream bed. Occasionally, he will stop and glance about, as though sensing that something is "amiss." As he continues, a hand suddenly shoots out and grabs him and pulls him into the bushes.

BLUNDER

(startled)

Ahhh!

It is BLIX, a brigand goblin hunter. With green skin, a long nose and pointed ears, a slung with savage weaponry, he is a terrifying sight.

BLIX

Blunder. Forgive this intrusion, but we goblins are a free-spirited lot.

Gripping Blunder by his helmet horns, he gives him a rough shake. Blunder wrenches free and turns, bumping into POX, a fat, furry goblin with the face of a pig. Pox grins and Blunder turns back to Blix; it is clear he is a new addition to their group.

BLIX

Now, tonight is your first big hunt, so we're going to teach you what being a goblin is all about.

BLUNDER

(eager)

I wants to learn! I craves knowledge!

He is interrupted by a sudden, distant BIRDCALL. All three turn towards TIC, the fourth member of their group. He wears a helmet similar to Blunder's, except one horn is broken off.

Tic is holding a lit lantern and standing a few yards off, gesturing excitedly. It was he who make the birdcall, and he repeats it while pointing at the distant hillside with the flashes of light emanating from behind it. Blix, intrigued, purses his lips and returns the call.

Drawing an arrow and nocking his bow, Blix turns and sets off through the underbrush silently towards the hill. Pox pauses to take a drink from the stream before turning and moving off to the right. Blunder lingers for a moment, bending down to pick up a large mushroom, before he hears an UNEARTHLY CRY, like the song of a whale, echoing through the night. He looks up into the treetops, brandishing a large axe.

Meanwhile the other goblins are approaching the hill, which is crested with a large tree surrounded by giant mushrooms. The closer and closer they get to the hill, the wind begins to pick up, blowing flower petals and leaves through the air as Blix is joined by Pox on his left and Tic on his right. They stare uncomprehending at the flashes of light, as the whale-song continues. Blunder is nowhere to be seen.

BLIX

(quietly)

Where's--

Suddenly, a few feet ahead of them, Blunder pops up from some bushes like a jack-in-the-box, startling some birds. He gawks as he is bathed in the white light. Blix is furious.

BLIX
(harsh whisper)
--Blunder!!!

Pox tosses a rock, which CLANGS off of Blunder's helmet. He realizes his error and scurries back into hiding, but it is too late. The startled birds have made the surrounding animals realize the presence of the goblins, and begin to scurry off in all directions.

BLIX

You idiot!

With a loud cry, Blix charges over the hilltop, followed by the other three who wave their weapons about wildly, yelling, but by the time they've made it over the hill and down the bottom and into a flower-filled glade, whatever was making the flashes of light is gone. Only Blix continues running, mounting a fallen log in time to catch a glimpse of the light retreating through the trees in the distance.

The wind dies down as Blunder, meanwhile, finds what appears to be a long strand of hair caught on a thorn bush. He grabs it. It is silver and shiny and he and the other two goblins immediately begin to fight over possession of it.

TIC

Give it to me!

BLUNDER

No! It's mine!

POX

No! It's MINE!!!

They roll around on the ground, punching and kicking one another like children. Blix, turning, races over and begins bashing them with his bow repeatedly while yelling.

BLIX

(screaming with rage)
Ahhhh! Ahhhhhh! AHHHHHHHHH!!!!! STOP IT!!!

The fighting instantly stops. As they sit there, dazed, Blix then takes the long strand of hair for himself and examines it curiously in the moonlight.

BLIX

Disgusting and pure, like a prayer. There be magic in this hair. We must take this to our master.

2. EXT. BOG - NIGHT

Blix, Pox, Blunder and Tic ride on their horses through the dark woods and arrive at the edge of a vast, disgusting, vile swamp. Dead trees rise up out of the water and drip with moss and slime. Tying their steeds up, the four goblins head in, picking their way across the bog, stepping from old chunks of masonry to submerged logs. A V-shaped ripple, like a submerged crocodile. It passes underneath the goblins as they cross a rickety log bridge. Blunder watches it go worriedly.

BLUNDER

This place gives me the creeps!

BLIX

We visit Dark Lord like all-time same. Why you worry? Think had thoughts and relax.

The others are liking this less and less. Blunder and Pox follow their leader without complaint, but Tic is clearly beginning to grow irritated with the entire affair. He trails along behind reluctantly. At the center of this fog-enshrouded mire is a large island where sits the ruins of a long-forgotten castle, built into the base of a giant, dead tree. This is what is known as the GREAT TREE, and it is a place of unspeakable evil. This is the goblins' destination.

3. INT. GREAT TREE - ENTRANCE

Blix enters through a small opening and enters the Tree's interior, which is a vast, hollow stump. Blunder, Pox and Tic crowd in behind him as they stand at the top of a steep embankment leading down. At the bottom is a deep, narrow chasm with a ledge jutting out over it. On the other side is a small tree tree affixed with a large, curved horn.

BLIX

(impatient)

No time to gawk, come on.

He starts down. The others follow and they begin struggling down the embankment, muttering and cursing among themselves as they go.

TIC

Frog spit!

BLUNDER

Snail sperm!

Blunder shoves past Blix and in his eagerness winds up losing his footing and rolls over and over down the embankment with a loud clatter. Blix sighs. Blunder lives up to his name. Blix and the other two make it to the bottom, Tic a slow last, as Blunder flails about like an overturned turtle.

Blix helps him up, then regards the pit. Several vines hang down. Blunder reaches for one randomly, but Blix slaps his hand away. He takes a vine himself and gives it an experimental tug, then, sure of himself, swings over the chasm like a green Tarzan.

Spinning he tosses the vine back over, laughing.

BLIX

Come on, Blunder!

Blunder catches the vine and hesitates, looking down the seemingly bottomless pit.

BLUNDER

I wish I'd stayed at home in bed!

BLIX

Come on!

Blunder grips the vine tightly and is given a shove by Pox. With a yell, the small goblin swings across, legs kicking. He almost doesn't make it. Blix has to reach out and grab him and pull him over. Blunder clings to Blix but the other goblin angrily shoves him off, and Blunder tumbles head over heels to safety as Blix throws the vine to Pox.

Pox catches it, and swings over as Tic complains loudly.

TIC

Why all the rush? All this fuss about a hair!

Pox lands next to Blix, who gives him a shove to go and stand by Blunder. Blix tosses the vine to Tic, the last one left on the other side of the pit. But he doesn't catch it. Blix looks annoyed.

BLIX

Come on, Tic.

TIC

No! No! I'll fall!

He shakes his head furiously. Blix is losing his patience.

BLIX

Come on! It's easy!

TIC

No! This is stupid! I'm not swinging over!

Blunder and Pox watch this with growing worry. They begin motioning with their arms for him to come over.

BLUNDER

Come on, Tic! Come on!

Blix smirks with evil insincerity.

BLIX

Trust me.

Finally, looking extremely fed up, Tic grabs the vine and swings over...only to have Blix bring his foot up and kick him in the chest, knocking him backwards! Blunder and Pox then watch in shock as Blix draws his sword, Tic dangling helplessly over the pit.

TIC

No! Ahhh!

Laughing evilly, Blix cuts the vine, and down Tic goes with a cry, dropping out of sight. Blunder and Pox come running to stand on either side of Blix, staring down into the abyss. Blunder frantically yells down into it.

BLUNDER

Tic! TIC!!!

Blix turns towards him, sword still drawn. Reflexively, Blunder draws his own weapon.

BLIX

Forget about Tic! Less is more! Better we split three ways than four!

Without any more ado, he sheathes his sword and marches past them. Pox shrugs and follows. Only Blunder lingers at the chasm for a moment or two longer, staring down into it, before finally turning and scurrying after the other two.

BLUNDER

Wait up, you guys!

4. INT. GREAT TREE - GREAT HALL

A sharp contrast to the exterior, the great hall of the Tree is a vast, ornate room, swathed in examples of royalty. The only light comes from a roaring fireplace opposite a banquet table heaped with exquisite foods. The fireplace's hearth is decorated with a massive sculpture depicting what appear to be damned souls writhing in agony and torment. Sitting in the center of the room, is a large high-backed throne, seen only from the rear in this scene. The LORD OF DARKNESS is sitting in it, although we can only see his arm.

LORD OF DARKNESS

(softly, to himself)
Mother Night, fold your dark arms about me. Protect me...in your black embrace. I sit alone, an impotent exile, whilst this force--this PRESENCE returns to torment me!!!

There is a KNOCK at the door.

LORD OF DARKNESS

Enter!

Slowly, the door creaks open. Blix walks confidently inside. Blunder and Pox linger fearfully in the doorway.

LORD OF DARKNESS

Ahhhhh...Blix. Come closer.

His clawed finger beckons, and Blix slowly approaches the throne.

BLIX

Hail, Divine Dark one, strong like lion, swift like shark. Though unworthy of the task, Great Lord, I found this, for your amusement.

He produces the hair and holds it up for Darkness to see. Before Darkness can reply, however, Blunder comes charging in and shoves past Blix angrily, shaking his fist.

BLUNDER

Don't listen! I found it! ME! Blunder the Bold!

LORD OF DARKNESS

Silence!!!

He points at Blunder and the goblin's fist erupts in flame, instantly transforming into a hideous, deformed chicken claw. He yowls in agony, clutching his wrist and backing away.

BLUNDER

Aahhhh! AHHHH!!! Thank you, Your Lordship! Thank you!!!

Pox comes over and has a look at the claw as Blunder experimentally clenches and unclenches it. He nods in approval.

POX

Quite stylish, actually.

Now Darkness has the hair and he holds it up close to his (unseen) face.

LORD OF DARKNESS

Where...?

BLIX

In the woods, six leagues back, 'tween Twin Oaks and Dragon's Track.

LORD OF DARKNESS

And did my bold hunter chance to see the quarry which cast this spore?

Blix shakes his head.

BLIX

I stalked it, Sire, but much too slow. What beast it be, I do not know.

LORD OF DARKNESS

This hair is from an angel of light. The purity of its heart is an abomination to me!

BLIX

Must be dread, indeed, to trouble YOU, Lordship.

LORD OF DARKNESS

Looking upon these frail creatures, one would not think think that they could contain suck power!

He clenches his fist around the hair and it disintegrates in a puff of flame! The goblins gasp. Suddenly, Darkness points at Blix.

LORD OF DARKNESS

You must find them for me! And DESTROY THEM!!!

At this, the goblins become very excited.

BLUNDER

We catch it! We catch it!

POX

Oh, yes! Field and fen! The glories of the chase!

There is a sudden pause, and then Blix voices the question that is on all their minds.

BLIX

Uh, what do they look like, Lord?

LORD OF DARKNESS

Fool!

He grabs a dagger off the banquet table and slams the hilt against Blix's forehead so that the blade is pointing upwards. Blix freezes and for the first time, we see him genuinely afraid.

LORD OF DARKNESS

Let this serve to remind you. They are each crowned with a single spiral, reaching like an antennae straight to heaven!

BLIX

I get the point, Lord.

LORD OF DARKNESS

Good. Bring the horns to me.

Removing the dagger, he tosses it aside and it clangs noisily onto an empty plate on the table. Blix looks relieved.

BLIX

Where shall I look, Sire?

LORD OF DARKNESS

There is only one lure for such disgusting goodness. One bait which never fails.

BLIX

(eagerly)

What be this bait? Oh, Divine Dark One, I beseech thee. Please, you teach me.

There is a pause. The goblins wait with bated breath. Then...

LORD OF DARKNESS
Innocence. In-no-cence!

Blix bows.