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Transcript: Episode 3
1x03: "The Fun in Funeral"
[NIGHT OUTSIDE ACADEMY: Ned is watching fireflies hover around an electric bug zapper. A firefly gets zapped and falls dead on a bench; he touches it and it flies off. However, a nearby spider crawling expectantly toward a firefly suddenly dies and falls off its web]
Narrator: At this very moment, young Ned was 9 years, 34 weeks, 12 hours and 54 minutes old. He was a gifted boy – not academically, nor athletically – he was gifted in a way no other boy was gifted. Young Ned could touch dead things and bring them back to life. But if he touched the dead thing twice, it died again forever. The consequence of touching a dead thing twice was as cruel as any consequence, and that was something else had to die. Young Ned rationalized this consequence was beyond his control: he was not to blame. But to remain blameless, he had to understand. [SCIENCE LAB: Ned places seven dead fireflies on a platter and covers it with a clear glass cover, then starts a stopwatch; on another platter, he touches seven more dead fireflies and touches each one before covering it]
Narrator: He realized to give life, he had to take it. Death, however, had a grace period. What young Ned did not know was how long that grace period was: one minute. Fearing the consequences of his actions, Ned vowed to never, ever again bring the dead back to life for more than a minute. Until he did it again. [the 2nd jar of fireflies die while the 1st jar comes to life; he releases them and watches them fly off. DISSOLVE TO: THE PIE HOLE KITCHEN. Ned tosses over a moldy peach with a ungloved hand: it becomes fresh again and he catches it with the other gloved hand, then passes it to Chuck, who washes them off] The expression "Pie in the Sky" entered popular culture in 1911: it refers to a dessert so sweet that it can only be found in Heaven. If you’re craving something before you die, I recommend where The Pie Maker makes his pies. But if you’re like Chuck, you may enjoy the pie even after you die. Her sixty seconds came and went, she stayed alive; and instead, someone else had to die. [the marigolds in the plant box withers and dies; Ned’s face falls and Digby whines, but Chuck doesn’t notice] He kept Chuck blissfully unaware of this fact: she was alive again – that was that.
Chuck: Which birthday do I celebrate? I’ve got two of them now. First day I was alive and first day I was alive again.
Ned: The one that requires less explanation.
Chuck: You remember my eighth birthday? Right before my dad died? You remember what you got me?
Ned: [remembers; then, sheepishly] A T-shirt.
Chuck: [innocently] With a beaver on it! He had little lipstick kisses on his cheek and was holding a sign saying "Be Kind to Animals: Kiss a Beaver." I suppose I should be celebrating every minute, shouldn’t I?
Chuck: I can be anybody now, anybody I want. I like that idea: I’m going to give that some thought.
Narrator: The Pie Maker liked that idea as well. As long as her thoughts didn’t fall on:
Chuck: Why is it only a minute?
Chuck: A minute seems awfully arbitrary.
Ned: A minute’s a long time: a lot can happen in a minute. Besides, the longer someone’s around that’s not supposed to be around the more likely that something will happen. Not necessarily directly or by any fault of theirs, but y’know, butterfly wings and such.
Chuck: What about them?
Ned: They cause hurricanes.
Chuck: Oh, right. Am I a hurricane?
Ned: A little bit, but I like the weather – [Chuck suddenly approaches Ned with a sheet of plastic wrap, places it between their faces, and gives him a long kiss]
Ned: You really shouldn’t do that. [then they keep doing that]
Narrator: Chuck wasn’t the only storm brewing in The Pie Hole that evening: an innocuous, low-pressure system was forming that would soon become Hurricane Olive. Watching The Pie Maker kiss the woman that wasn’t her, Olive stopped breathing: it was as if all the oxygen had left the room. [DINING ROOM: Olive is holding a pot of coffee in each hand, staring at the two lovebirds, when a customer chirps in with:]
Alfredo Aldarisio: Espresso, please?
Olive: We have coffee.
Alfredo Aldarisio: [points behind her] You have an espresso machine.
Olive: It’s broken: it sits there being pretty, but nobody touches it. Decaf or regular?
Alfredo Aldarisio: No flavors? Hazelnut, French vanilla?
Olive: [explodes] Why can’t sugar be enough?! [brings him a sugar dispenser] Here’s your sugar! [sits in the booth and exhales] Whoo, I forgot to breathe. Ever felt like all the oxygen left the room?
Alfredo Aldarisio: Oh, my, yes.
Narrator: In that moment, Alfredo Aldarisio recognized a kindred spirit in Olive Snook. He also lived in constant fear of the oxygen leaving the room, but his pathology ran much, much deeper. [MONTAGE: Alfredo imagines that the table is shaking, then himself, then the restaurant, and with the wind whipping loudly, the roof blows off and he is sucked into the atmosphere] He was haunted by the notion that at any moment, the Earth could lose its atmosphere and he would be sucked into the vacuum of space.
Alfredo Aldarisio: Excuse me.
Narrator: A traveling salesman by trade, Mr. Aldarisio sells pharmaceutical alternatives which he also uses to manage his condition. [Alfredo takes a small bottle out of his pocket; using a dropper, he squeezes several drops into his mouth]
Alfredo Aldarisio: Medicinal. You’re not wrong about the oxygen leaving the room: the planet is losing its atmosphere, affecting gravity. Volumes aren’t what they used to be: they had to adjust the kilogram.
Olive: If you ask me, the kilogram needs to be taken down a peg. [gets up] Decaf or regular?
Alfredo Aldarisio: Regular, lots of sugar. [entranced by her] More than enough. [Emerson enters The Pie Hole and pauses at the front door]
Narrator: Emerson Cod, Private Investigator, made a business of murder. But before he could get down to business:
Emerson: I feel like ice cream. [at the counter, Olive serves him a scoop of ice cream]
Olive: Musing on the idea of setting someone on fire doesn’t mean you really want to set them on fire: it’s just the thought of it makes you really happy. But only for a second, then you feel bad, but then that second would feel like a lot of fun.
Emerson: You thinkin’ of settin’ someone on fire?
Olive: No, I was just speaking in the figurative, but figuratively speaking, someone should set you on fire for throwing my heart under a bus when you told me Ned didn’t want me.
Emerson: That was the Truth Bus.
Olive: That wasn’t the Truth Bus: that was the Bitchy Crosstown Express.
Emerson: By "bitchy," you mean "frank" and "honest."
Olive: If I want Frank and Honest – well, I don’t want Frank and Honest. I never want Frank and Honest, so let’s just take it off the docket. While we’re on the subject of Frank and Honest, I don’t like that girl. Not one bit. [through the kitchen window, Chuck cheerfully waves at them; they both smile and wave back, neither of them being frank and honest about their feelings for her]
Narrator: Emerson Cod liked her even less. So much so, it warranted a private conversation with The Pie Maker. But not private enough. [Ned and Emerson sit in a booth; just as Emerson opens his mouth to speak, Chuck slides in next to him]
Chuck: So did somebody die? How did they die?
Emerson: They died mysteriously.
Chuck: He somebody or she somebody?
Emerson: He. [to Ned] I told you I wanted to discuss this in private.
Ned: Chuck is private: part of my private.
Emerson: She ain’t part of mine: I don’t know her.
Chuck: [oblivious to Emerson’s hostility] So what was the mysterious part? The way they died or the circumstances? I mean, did you find them with a noose around his neck and you didn’t quite know how it got there? Did he drown in his bed but the sheets were all dry?
Ned: [concerned] You’re obsessed.
Chuck: Am I? Do you think dying has made me morbid? [Ned nods] C’mon, how did this somebody die?
Emerson: Said it felt like life just got up and left him. Just like I’m about get up and leave you.
Chuck: Y’know what it could be? It could be like one of those untraceable poisons or it could be a staged poison – like when you have to actually touch four things before it actually kills a person – it could be that.
Ned: What did you say it was besides mysterious?
Emerson: I’ve not yet expressed my opinion.
Ned: Would you care to express it now?
Emerson: My opinion is you need to take a coupon for this conversation and redeem it at another date.
Ned: I want to use my coupon now.
Emerson: Redeem it tomorrow. There’s somebody in the county fridge that I need you to talk to. [scoots against Chuck so he can get out of the booth, then to Ned] In private. My private. Which doesn’t include her. So she better not come. [MORGUE OFFICE: Emerson and the Coroner are chatting]
Coroner: I can write a book on hand moisturizer. Nobody wants the last thing they been touched with to be ashy and dry. Take a gander. [holds out his hands]
Coroner: You got some serious cracks going on there. Put those down here. [he squirts moisturizer in Emerson’s palm; Ned and Chuck peek their heads inside]
Coroner: [to Emerson] Thought you just came by to say hello. [INSIDE MORGUE: The trio are staring at a covered corpse on the table]
Chuck: You won’t even know I’m here.
Emerson: ‘Cause you leaving?
Ned: C’mon, it makes her happy.
Emerson: You remember what that happiness looks like: redeem your coupon. [Ned approaches the corpse] Oh, now you’re gonna listen to me. No, no, I ain’t gonna say another word: Future Me, though, is gonna tell you "I told you so" up one side and down the other, but Now Me is just gonna sit back and watch. [Unnerved, Ned removes the sheet to reveal the sacrificial Lawrence Schatz, Chuck’s funeral director]
Ned: Oh, no.
Chuck: Oh, no, what?
Narrator: The facts were these: cunning and corrupt, Lawrence Schatz was a funeral director who made a living off the dead above and beyond his job description. Two days, 8 hours and 43 minutes before his death, he was exposed as a graverobber. [FLASHBACK: Lawrence Schatz is removing jewelry from a corpse when a relative busts him]
Lawrence Schatz: [sheepish] Oh. I was just prepping the body for burial. Your wife’s gorgeous – how did you guys meet?
Narrator: But before any legal action could be taken, before the spoils of his graverobbing could be found, Lawrence Schatz found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time. He was 44 years, 17 months, 10 days, 6 hours and 9 minutes old when he found himself in close proximity of The Pie Maker. But to keep his Sleeping Beauty alive meant that someone else had to die. [FLASHBACK: Ned first awakens Chuck]
Ned: What if you didn’t have to be dead?
Narrator: One minute later, The Pie Maker took a life and gave it to someone else. [OUTSIDE CITY MORGUE: Ned is fleeing to his car, while Chuck and Emerson follow]
Chuck: Why are you running away?
Ned: Vertigo, dizzy! The room started spinning and I, uh, I think it’s my shoes, they’re stiff and they pinch and I think they’re cutting off my circulation. [to Emerson] That was mean: that was a very mean thing you did.
Emerson: Really? ‘Cause Future Me is here now and he’s got something to say.
Chuck: But you didn’t touch him! How are we supposed to find out who killed him if you didn’t touch him?
Emerson: Already know who killed him.
Chuck: So the mysterious part is how he was killed?
Emerson: Already know that, too.
Chuck: Okay, how was he killed and who was the killer?
Emerson: [pointedly to Ned] Yeah, who was the killer?
Narrator: The Pie Maker’s eye twitched in anticipation of the lie he was about to tell, but instead what he told was the truth.
Chuck: What? You killed someone? Who did you kill?
Ned: I didn’t –
Emerson: You didn’t: that’s why somebody died.
Ned: [to Emerson] Will you stop talking.
Chuck: You didn’t what?
Emerson: [to Chuck] Lookee here: you need a ticket to ride this ride and if your ticket gets punched, you gotta take somebody else’s ticket.
Ned: [to Emerson] Why are you still talking?
Emerson: I’m ripping off the Band-Aid!
Ned: I’m not a ripper – I pull up a corner a little at a time, then I run it under warm water and then I pull it up a little more – it’s a process.
Emerson: Let it rip!
Ned: I didn’t actively kill: I’m not an active killer. I’m not a killer!
Chuck: You killed someone for me?
Ned: It wasn’t my fault, it’s a random proximity thing. There was no choice or decision-making whatsoever, it just happened.
Chuck: But you knew it would happen.
Ned: I was incapacitated with not being able to think. I had one thought in my head and it was of you – and it clogged me up so no other thought could get through, including the one telling me to touch you again.
Chuck: So every minute I’ve been celebrating wasn’t really mine to celebrate.
Narrator: As Chuck considered the life she was living was not her own, Olive considered the life she was not living. [THE PIE HOLE. Olive is refilling a sugar dispenser, when a familiar intrusion:]
Alfredo Aldarisio: Can I make an observation?
Olive: Compliment or criticism?
Alfredo Aldarisio: A neutral thought that I would say was either complimentary or critical.
Olive: Neutral thought gives me pause.
Alfredo Aldarisio: Neutral for only this portion of the conversation, but I do have complimentary observations as part of a follow-up discussion. Which I intend to headline with an offer to fix your espresso machine.
Olive: What’s your neutral thought?
Alfredo Aldarisio: You seem decidedly unhappy.
Olive: I haven’t decided that.
Alfredo Aldarisio: No anxiety? Neuroses? Pathologies?
Olive: Garden variety – what are you beating at?
Alfredo Aldarisio: I’m beating at happiness. I’ve beaten it into submission and bottled it for convenience. [takes out a suitcase with an elaborate drawer system to reveal dozens of dropper bottles] It’s homeopathic.
Olive: Meaning it deeply relates to gay people?
Alfredo Aldarisio: Gay only in that they are bright and happy. You never have to worry about the oxygen leaving the room again.
Olive: Don’t go bothering the customers with this: this is a pie house, not some herbal crack den. [THE PIE HOLE KITCHEN: Chuck comes in through the back door with Ned on her heels, while Emerson strolls in]
Ned: Chuck, say something.
Chuck: I can’t for the life of me think of anything to say – oh, I forgot, it’s not even my life, is it? [Chuck leaves and Olive smiles, sensing an opportunity and follows him in the kitchen but Ned dismisses her]
Ned: Not now. [Olive leaves; then, to Emerson] I feel violated. That was my information – there’s your information and then there’s my information.
Emerson: That was our information: you let a man die on our time, a man who coulda been me.
Ned: But it wasn’t.
Emerson: But it coulda been. That was a business associate of mine: who do you think hooked us up with Corpse Bride?
Ned: He stole stuff off dead people.
Emerson: Regardless how he ran his own business, he never interfered with how I ran mine. You on the other hand, may be an accomplice to a murder.
Ned: Stop saying that, I didn’t murder anyone. There was no malice aforethought. Okay, maybe accidental, involuntary manslaughter.
Emerson: Oh, you "accidentally, involuntarily" let Dead Girl live?
Ned: Well ...
Emerson: Yeah, that’s what I thought you was gonna say. Lawrence Schatz was murdered enough for his brother to hire me to find out who killed him.
Ned: Why did you take this case?
Emerson: You want me to take this case. I’m making sure nobody else solves it. Look, I don’t want to go down this road with you: I’m sensitive to your experience, I understand that it’s traumatic, but now I need to chat with Lawrence Schatz before he goes into the ground – tomorrow.
Ned: I’m not going back that funeral home – it’s returning to the scene of a crime, that’s just sloppy. And by the way, to ask him what?
Emerson: I want to ask Lawrence what he did with all that precious family heirlooms.
Ned: So you can return it to the families and help heal the grieving?
Emerson: Yeah. ‘Cause after the grieving stops, you have joy. And with joy, comes money. And Louis Schatz will stop asking questions about how his brother died.
Ned: I’m not touching Lawrence Schatz, it’s too traumatic. I am fragile on this issue.
Emerson: That how it is?
Emerson: Whatever you say – killer.
Narrator: The Pie Maker rationalized circumstances beyond his control were responsible for Lawrence Schatz’s death. He was not to blame. Rationalizing those rationalizations to the man he inadvertently killed was something he’d rather not do. [THE PIE HOLE EXTERIOR: Chuck is sitting against Ned’s car when he comes out]
Chuck: I want to talk to Lawrence Schatz.
Chuck: I want you to talk to him, too.
Ned: Why would I do that?
Chuck: So you can apologize and I can say thank you.
Narrator: As The Pie Maker found himself back at the scene of his crime, Chuck found herself back where her second life began. Now, with the understanding of how it began. [SCHATZ FUNERAL HOME: The trio is standing before Lawrence Schatz’ casket. Chuck’s eyes widen as see a man who looks exactly like the deceased funeral director, only wearing a tracksuit and sporting a mustache]
Chuck: [to Ned] Have you already been here?
Ned: [shocked] Lawrence Schatz?
Louis Schatz: Louis. Lawrence is dead. Hey, Emerson.
Emerson: Hey, Louie.
Chuck: [smiles upon seeing Louis’ T-shirt sporting the logo for:] Darling Mermaid Darlings!
Louis Schatz: They just buried their niece, Lonely Tourist, Charlotte Charles. You see, they’re on tour.
Chuck: I do, that’s so exciting.
Louis Schatz: Tour’s cancelled: they’re in a dark place. Some kind of emotional relapse. [squints at Chuck] Have we met before?
Chuck & Ned: No.
Narrator: The cause of The Darling Mermaid Darlings emotional relapse was this: after losing Chuck, Aunts Lily and Vivian had a better appreciation of the preciousness of life. With luggage packed, bonnets cinched, and sunscreen vigorously applied, they were ready at last to start their long-awaited comeback tour. [MONTAGE: A poster stating "The Darling Mermaid Darlings: A Synchronized Swimming Extravaganza. Coming Soon to a Body of Water Near You". CHARLES’ FOYER: Lily and Vivian are carrying mermaid-tail garment bags, getting ready to leave when Lily picks up the mail and flips over a postcard from Tahiti] But not today. To their surprise there was something waiting in the morning mail alongside the Thrifty Nickel and Pennysaver:
Aunt Lily: [excitedly] It’s from Charlotte!
Narrator: In that moment, only for a moment, Aunt Lily forgot Chuck was dead. At least dead to her. Then she remembered.
Aunt Vivian: Poor, poor Charlotte.
Narrator: And with that, The Darling Mermaid Darlings cancelled their comeback tour. [Lily turns back to go upstairs, pausing to lift her eyepatch to release a stream of tears]
Aunt Lily: I’m having a martini and going to bed.
Louis Schatz: Y’know, Larry died on the same day that we buried Lonely Tourist, Charlotte Charles. We don’t often bury a celebrity.
Emerson: [oh, please] Celebrity ...
Chuck: Burying a celebrity, even a pseudo-celebrity who’s only famous for how she died, must be good for any funeral home, I’d imagine.
Louis Schatz: It would be if it wasn’t for Larry’s graverobbing scandal. Or his murder. He’s in here. I got it locked so nobody can defile his dead body.
Ned: Are you sure he was murdered?
Louis Schatz: I’ve been putting it all together: boy, do I have a tale to tell ...
Narrator: And this is the tale that Louis Schatz told: He detailed a series of events that began when he caught his brother Lawrence in the act. [FLASHBACK: Lawrence is busted by a relative. Louis pops up behind the relative and shakes his head disappointedly]
Lawrence Schatz: I was just prepping the body for burial. Your wife’s gorgeous: how’d you meet?
Louis Schatz: Aw, Larry, how could you?
Narrator: When word of Lawrence’s graverobbing ways spread through the sleepy hollow of Coeur d’Coeurs, there was public outrage. [MONTAGE: The post office is inundated with hate mail addressed to the funeral home] Both hate mail and death threats by the hundreds, frightened the truth out of Lawrence. According to Louis, he only confessed his sins to the one person he knew would forgive him. [A crying Lawrence is confessing to his brother Louis]
Lawrence Schatz: I buried it all where no one could find it!
Louis Schatz: You gotta give everything back.
Lawrence Schatz: But I buried it really deep!
Narrator: Louis insisted that what his brother did not confess was where he had hidden the spoils of his graverobbing. That secret he took to his own grave when he presumably died of heart failure. [MONTAGE: Dozens of angry relatives are shouting at a sweating Louis] But as Louis was besieged by angry families, seeking the return of stolen heirlooms, he began to wonder: what if it wasn’t heart failure? What if his brother was murdered? What if in the hundreds of letters addressed to Lawrence Schatz threatening his life, one of them was a promise? What if his brother was murdered, and what if his murder was next? [VIEWING ROOM: Louis is looking down at his brother in the coffin]
Louis Schatz: I told Larry it was bad karma – the whole thing makes me sick, just sick! You know what it’s like to live in daily fear that one minute you could drop dead, right where you’re standing because of something somebody else did?
Emerson: I feel like I could smoke a cigar with you.
Louis Schatz: I don’t smoke: that was Larry. [takes the cigar in Lawrence’s vest pocket and hands it to Emerson] Here, take it: he would. It’s true what they say about twins: his life was my life. Strange to share someone’s life, I feel like mine’s tainted now. I would love to get back what he took.
Emerson: Um, we have a moment to pay our respects while you rustle up that hate mail to go? [Louis leaves and Emerson closes the door]
Narrator: As they stood over the man who died for one of them and was killed by the other, Chuck and The Pie Maker carefully planned their words. [Ned starts his watch and touches Lawrence]
Lawrence Schatz: Yes?
Ned: I’m sorry for what I did: it was mostly an accident but partially on purpose, however inadvertent, I’m sorry I did it. That’s all.
Lawrence Schatz: Lonely Tourist, Charlotte Charles? Are you part of my welcoming committee?
Chuck: More like a beneficiary in that I’m still alive which is why you’re not.
Lawrence Schatz: Am I human sacrifice? [looks around] Hey, Emerson!
Emerson: [cheerfully] Oh, hey, Larry! [then flatly] What you do with all that stuff you stole off them dead people?
Lawrence Schatz: Why don’t you ask Louis what he did with it.
Emerson: Louis said you buried it.
Lawrence Schatz: And you believed him? You met Louis? Hey, how did I die? Did somebody kill me? Hey, did Louis kill me?
Ned: Nobody killed you, per se.
Chuck: Yes, they did: it was so that I could live.
Ned: It wasn’t personal, I didn’t pick you, the selection was purely random, it just didn’t help that you were in the next room.
Emerson: Louis has all that stuff you stole?
Lawrence Schatz: We stole: it was a family business. Louis has everything but this watch! [gestures to a gold pocketwatch on his body with the initials "C.C."]
Chuck: [wistfully] My dad gave me a watch just like that.
Lawrence Schatz: [shamefully] Yeah, you were buried with it – well, you were supposed to be ... Caught me in the cookie jar ...
Chuck: [no longer wistful] You stole it off my dead body?
Lawrence Schatz: Your dead body wasn’t doing anything with it. [she grabs the watch and angrily shuts the coffin; Lawrence shouts are muffled] Hey, wait, what are you doing? Hey!
Ned: [tries to lift the lid] It’s stuck!
Emerson: [double-takes] You better playing!
Ned: [off his watch] Twenty-nine seconds!
Emerson: Oh, HELL NO. [he takes off and flees the funeral home, fingers crossed all the way]
Narrator: One minute’s time was nearing its end: random selection was about to begin. [Ned and Chuck struggle with the lid; Ned grabs an urn]
Ned: Five seconds!
Chuck: Maybe I should let him have his life back!
Ned: Not how it works! No – regifting! [he successfully whangs the urn against the lid and it flies open]
Lawrence Schatz: That wasn’t cool, you guys – [Ned touches him and he dies again; Ned and Chuck collapse on the floor]
Chuck: [holds up the watch] That was so sweet of my aunts to bury it with me. My dad had it and then I had it. [gesturing to the coffin] And then I suppose he had it, which really steams me.
Ned: You got it back.
Chuck: Yeah, I did. It’s nice to get things back. [sadly] My aunts cancelled their tour. I was really looking forward to hiding out in the crowd with a big pair of sunglasses and a parasol watching them perform in their mermaid suits. He said they were in a dark place, they had some kind of emotional relapse! Couldn’t we just –
Ned: We can’t see your aunts. I’m sorry.
Narrator: If Chuck could not regift the life she’d been given, she at least wanted to find a way to share it with her aunts, Lillian and Vivian. [OUTSIDE: Ned and Chuck pulls up to Emerson sitting on a bench, smoking a cigar]
Emerson: Anybody dead back there that shouldn’t be?
Emerson: Sweet. [MONTAGE: A newspaper headline reads: "Dead Funeral Director Robbed from the Dead"]
Narrator: After Lawrence Schatz was exposed as a graverobber, the mailbox at the Schatz Funeral Home received 1,867 hate letters, each one a catalogue of heirlooms feared stolen and lost. [THE PIE HOLE: The trio is sitting in a booth, flooded with the hate mail]
Ned: Louis Schatz is a big fat liar – and I say "fat" in reference as his size as a liar, not as a judgment of his physical appearance.
Chuck: I’m not mad at him for lying: if I could pin my crimes on a dead relative, especially some guilty dead relative, I’d certainly consider it.
Emerson: Sucker played me like Boo-Boo the Fool. Hired me to make him look innocent ... he knew all along where the dead people treasure is buried. It’s all right, though: I’m gonna follow his lying, fat ass until he leads me right to it. Then I’m gonna take it.
Chuck: You can’t steal dead people’s stuff!
Emerson: I’m not the one who stole it. I don’t condone what they did, but it’s once removed now: I’m not the pirate, I’m just looking for treasure.
Chuck: That pirate metaphor is weak.
Emerson: It’s apt. I find a dead pirate treasure at the bottom of the sea and I take no matter whose it was if whose it was is dead ‘cause it’s mine now.
Chuck: [waves the pocketwatch] This – this isn’t a doubloon – this is somebody’s something. Stealing from a pirate who already stole is still stealing, it’s not once removed.
Emerson: Somebody didn’t want that something if they buried it somebody who can’t use it.
Chuck: What if Lawrence Schatz was murdered for this buried treasure – [to Ned] Well, was gonna before you got to him.
Ned: Why’d you have to say it like that?
Chuck: There’s a lot of hostility in these letters: do you realize how angry someone has to be before they put pen to paper? I mean, these people are furious! Anyone of them could be the killer.
Emerson: Lawrence Schatz wasn’t murdered. He was accidentally, involuntarily manslaughtered!
Ned: I appreciate that.
Emerson: There ain’t no killer.
Narrator: Be that as it may, murder was on someone’s mind. [OUTSIDE: a mysterious man hidden in shadow pulls his truck up and looks at the trio through The Pie Hole window. Later, Chuck is going over the letters alone] As Chuck catalogued a missing heirloom: she considered what her aunts had lost and how it could never be returned.
Chuck: This is depressing. [suddenly, Alfredo Aldarisio appears with his suitcase]
Alfredo Aldarisio: Did you say depressing? [opens it up] FDA-approved, pharmaceutical-grade herbology.
Chuck: Like a bully for your emotions.
Alfredo Aldarisio: Emotions need to be bullied. Indulging depression is like indulging a horrible, willful child. If they’re allowed to run roughshod, you’ll find yourself catering to its every whim. So, bully it and bully it good.
Chuck: Everyone needs to be bullied sometimes. Do you have any literature?
Alfredo Aldarisio: I have a pamphlet if you’d like to read that. Our herbs contain proven ingredients in appropriate doses manufactured with the strictest of quality control.
Chuck: Herbs for depression sound so much more civil than anti-depressants.
Alfredo Aldarisio: And fewer side effects.
Chuck: Can I have these?
Alfredo Aldarisio: I just can’t give them to you: it’s a controlled substance. But I have a sample pack. [gives a packet of droppers to her; later, alone in the kitchen, Chuck makes a pie, uses the vial to dispense several drops and proceeds to grate cheese over it]
Narrator: Chuck wasn’t thinking of herself: she was thinking of her aunts. Though the life she was living was not her own, Chuck found a way for her living gift to be the gift that kept giving. She took responsibility for Lily and Vivian’s happiness and took action. Even after she was dead and gone, Chuck found a way to do what she had done all her life: care for her aunts. [after it’s done baking, she puts in the refrigerator earmarked for deliveries. The next morning, Olive is supervising the Deliveryboy]
Olive: Oh, you forgot one.
Deliveryboy: Outside my zone.
Olive: Oh, it’s not so far. [takes out the box from the fridge] Do you want to be a Deliveryboy or a Deliveryman?
Deliveryboy: Boy. You be a man. [he leaves]
Olive: [calls after him] But it’s my day off! And I’m a girl!
Narrator: In her own way, Olive identified with the plight of the abandoned pie. It was meant for someone, whom without a little effort wouldn’t be with the one it was meant to be with. [she shuts the fridge and leaves, not taking notice of the identical twin brother dead in the other side of the refrigerator] And tragically for Louis Schatz, he was meant to be with his brother. [later, Ned is preparing a pie crust when Chuck walks in]
Chuck: Hey, I didn’t hear you leave this morning.
Ned: I didn’t hear you come in last night.
Chuck: I was having conversations with myself.
Ned: What did you guys talk about?
Chuck: I asked myself if I were storming a castle to save a Sleeping Beauty from the jaws of death, and in the melee, my sword of truth flew swift and sure and killed an unfortunate outlaw huddled nearby, how would I feel?
Ned: Did you successfully save the Sleeping Beauty?
Chuck: In the scenario, yeah.
Ned: And how would you feel hypothetically?
Chuck: I’d feel happy, then bad, primarily happy, then I’d think about it too much, then I’d feel bad again.
Ned: That’s kinda how I feel/slash/exactly how I feel. I don’t want you to think I’m a killer. [goes to the fridge]
Chuck: I don’t want to think you’re a killer: I want to think of you as Prince Charming. I’m not setting a standard for you to live up to, it’s just –
Ned: That’s not good. [steps aside so Chuck can see the corpse of Louis Schatz inside the fridge]
Chuck: Did you – ?
Ned: No. [she looks at him doubtedly] No!
Narrator: As Chuck and The Pie Maker considered the dead Schatz brother in the freezer, Olive Snook considered the consequences of driving several towns away to make a delivery to an address that was not part of the regular delivery route. [OUTSIDE CHARLES’ HOME: Olive’s overactive imagination is cranked on high as she hesitantly walks toward the door. The clang of the gate and squawk of a bird overhead is more than enough to unnerve her]
Narrator: As she drew closer to the front door, Olive considered the sheer number of crimes against deliverypeople and how they were on the rise. [finally making it to the porch, her finger hovers over the doorbell; she finally rings it, drops the pie on a table and makes for the front gate, but can’t open it]
Olive: [frantic] SOS-OS-OS-SOS! [Vivian pops up from behind holding a parasol and the pie box]
Aunt Vivian: Your pie smells delicious! [CHARLES’ SITTING ROOM: Vivian is serving pie to Olive]
Aunt Vivian: Pies for breakfast always remind me of mother.
Aunt Lily: [stumbles in] Vermouth always reminds me of mother. [to Vivian] Why are we having pie? [to Olive] And who the hell are you?
Aunt Lily: Forgive Lily: the last time we had visitors, there was a home-invasion.
Olive: [realizing] That was all over the evening news: you’re Darling Mermaid Darlings, Vivian and Lily Charles! I saw you perform at the Callum County Country Fair when I was a little girl! [stops when she sees that the aunts could care less]
Aunt Vivian: Olive is in the pie industry.
Aunt Lily: Really?
Olive: Someone has made you the happy recipients of a pie from The Pie Hole, as in "Shut Your". Or in this case, "Open Your", ‘cause it’s real good.
Aunt Vivian: Pie Hole – I like it – it’s provocative!
Aunt Lily: You must love pie to make it your life’s work.
Olive: Lots to love at The Pie Hole!
Aunt Lily: [takes a bite] There’s gruyère baked into the crust.
Olive: Oh, I didn’t even know we did that.
Aunt Lily: [trying not to tear up] Charlotte loved gruyère ...
Aunt Vivian: We recently lost our niece, Lonely Tourist Charlotte Charles.
Olive: It’s all over in the news: I am so sorry for your loss. I’m sure you’re sick of hearing it and I don’t want to beat a sentiment ... [but of course she is beating it] I’m so sorry for your loss.
Aunt Vivian: This has to be from that young man who lived next door when Charlotte was a girl.
Aunt Lily: Oh, he had a filthy mind as a child. He gave Charlotte a beaver T-shirt for her eighth birthday. [to Vivian] What did we call him?
Aunt Vivian: Beaver Boy.
Aunt Lily: [remembering] Beaver Boy ...
Aunt Vivian: He grew up to be a nice young man.
Aunt Lily: Beaver Boy did say he grew up to be a pie maker. Imagine he gives lots of people pie.
Olive: [freezes in recognition] Beaver Boy’s a pie maker?
Aunt Lily: Mmm-hmm.
Olive: ... Who was childhood sweethearts with your niece, Lonely Tourist Charlotte Charles? Who is dead? Presently? [the aunts stop eating and stare at Olive]
Narrator: The truth about the dead girl who wasn’t dead vibrated on Olive’s tongue. She dared not let it out, so she took another bite. Not realizing Louis Schatz was dead and wedged between chilling dough and yesterday’s eggs, Emerson Cod prepared to monitor every move he made in efforts of finding buried treasure. [EMERSON’S OFFICE: The phone rings and he answers it]
Ned: Hi, um, one of the Schatz brothers –
Ned: Yeah, Louis is in my freezer and I’m not sure how he got there ‘cause it doesn’t seem to be his own doing on the account of he’s dead and all.
Emerson: You being set up.
Ned: He says we’re being set up.
Chuck: Why would anyone want to set us up?
Emerson: No: you being set up.
Ned: Why would anyone want to set me up?
Emerson: Hell, if I know, maybe since they figured you killed the other one.
Ned: Have I been exposed? Does somebody know?
Emerson: Somebody knows something and that somebody probably already called the police. [a knock at the locked Pie Hole front door: the police are peering in]
Ned: Hey, the police are here. [Ned starts his watch and touches the frozen Louis and he comes alive]
Louis Schatz: Hi.
Ned: You need to follow us.
Louis Schatz: Where we goin’?
Chuck: You’re going to heaven!
Louis Schatz: I got in?
Chuck: Yeah! Heaven’s like closing in five minutes!
Ned: Or one actually.
Chuck: Heaven’s like closing in one minute. [ALLEY: Emerson backs his car by the back door while Ned and Chuck help the still frozen Louis outside]
Louis Schatz: [sees Emerson] Hey, Emerson, you going to Heaven, too?
Emerson: Yeah, we all going to Heaven.
Louis Schatz: That’s so weird, we died at the same time.
Emerson: Mmm-hmm – rapture.
Louis Schatz: No way!
Chuck: Yes, way!
Louis Schatz: Hey, is Larry here?
Emerson: Yeah, he told us to ask you what you did with all that stuff you stole off those dead folks.
Chuck: Yeah, but first you gotta tell us who killed you. Heaven will want to know.
Louis Schatz: I choked on a piece of tongue.
Emerson: Yours or somebody else’s?
Narrator: In this instance, the tongue belonged to a cow. [FLASHBACK: Louis is in his private office at the funeral home, eating dinner, when we see a shadow appear: Louis begins choking] Although Louis Schatz had been limiting his portions, they weren’t so small they couldn’t block his windpipe when he was confronted by an angry customer.
Louis Schatz: He said something about a Civil War heirloom, then I lost consciousness. I usually cough it up before I pass out.
Ned: [off his watch] Five seconds!
Louis Schatz: [looking around] There’s no seatbelts in this car.
Emerson: Wait, wait: what’d you do with all that stuff you stole off those dead – [Ned touches Louis, silencing him forever] – Folk.
Ned: Sorry. What are we gonna do with the body?
Emerson: We’re gonna put Schatz back exactly where he died and show whoever this sucker was how a sucker gets framed.
Ned: So we don’t know who this sucker is?
Chuck: Yes, we do: Wilfred Woodruff.
Narrator: In Chuck’s cataloguing of heirlooms feared stolen by professionals, she came across a particularly angry death threat, written by one Wilfred Woodruff. [FLASHBACK: Chuck alone in The Pie Hole booth reading the various hate mail. MONTAGE: A corpse outfitted in a Civil War uniform and sword in a coffin; a pair of hands takes the sword away] Mr. Woodruff claimed a Civil War heirloom, supposedly buried with his grandfather, was offered in an online auction, which was traced back to the brothers Schatz. Mr. Woodruff clearly stated in writing that punishment for insulting the Woodruff family honor in such a way was death. The letter reads:
It is with great venom with which I put pen to paper. I recently came to repossess an item of great family importance. The Woodruff family name has been tarnished! Much to my dismay, I recently purchased this family civil war heirloom. This sword had been buried with my grandfather. Unfortunately, I traced the sword to your establishment! Sir, I can assure you that you have insulted our family honor and punishment will be meted out accordingly! I will let loose the fateful lightning of this terribly swift sword and strike you down with it!
Look forward to killing you.
Best, Wilfred Woodruff VI"
[SCHATZ FUNERAL HOME: Chuck comes down the steps just as Ned and Emerson lug Louis in a wheelbarrow]
Chuck: It’s all locked up!
Ned: What? [OUTSIDE FUNERAL HOME: The trio consider an unlocked cellar window]
Emerson: I ain’t gonna fit.
Ned: You’ll fit: there’s plenty of room. [True to his word, Emerson is wedged in the window. From the inside the cellar, Ned frowns as he considers Emerson’s lower half]
Ned: Oh, the window looked bigger from up there.
Chuck: Are you stuck?
Chuck: Yes, you are, you’re like Winnie the Pooh! Give me your paws, Pooh. [Emerson gives up and holds out his hands; Chuck pulls, while down below, Ned pulls as well]
Emerson: Aah! You people stop pulling me! [CELLAR: in the dim light, Ned doesn’t see the gurneys with dead bodies … ]
Ned: [touches 1st gurney] Ooh! [touches 2nd gurney] Oh! Oh, this isn’t good at all. [uncovers the first sheet to reveal an old man]
Corpse #1: What part of ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ don’t you people understand? [Ned touches the man and he dies, then uncovers the second gurney to reveal a young woman]
Corpse #2: Honey, did you turn off the gas? [Ned touches the woman and she dies; eyes adjusting, Ned notices a body moving under a sheet on a gurney and reveals a young Asian man. He touches the man but nothing happens until he blinks awake and draws a sword – some would say a Civil War heirloom …]
Ned: [realizing] Wilfred Woodruff?
Narrator: The Pie Maker considered the choices he made that brought him to this very moment – a moment that may be his last. [Woodruff brings the sword down on Ned] The irony of being struck down by the man who murdered the twin who murdered the man he killed, was not lost on The Pie Maker. Also not lost: his agility.
Ned: Whoa! [Ned moves quickly to the side and Woodruff instead cuts off the foot of a corpse; both freak out simultaneously]
Ned & Woodruff: Oh, my God! [Ned picks up a long metal rod to defend himself]
Emerson: What’s going on in there?
Ned: Wilfred Woodruff found his sword!
Wilfred Woodruff: [strong Southern accent] I propose to fight on this line if it takes all summer!
Ned: What line? It’s autumn.
Wilfred Woodruff: Ulysses S. Grant said that. Not all of it: just the last part. Bad Luck Missionary Ridge? My great-great-great-great grandpappy fought proudly against him with this sword.
Ned: You adopted?
Narrator: Wilfred Woodruff was not adopted. [FLASHBACK: A white man is watching coolies build a railroad when he passes out] On a hot day in the summer of 1863, Wilfred Woodruff’s great-great-great-great grandfather, Fambing Woo, was laying track for the Central Pacific Railroad. [the coolies promptly take off running, while Fambing Woo takes off in another direction] The decision was made to find a better life. As the Civil War was still raging, the other men chose to go northwest: why Fambing Woo chose to run southeast is not known. Some said it was the hand of destiny; others felt it was heat stroke. [later, Fambing Woo is stealing clothing] Eventually, Fambing was forced to steal the clothes off a fallen soldier. [as Fambing finishes putting on the soldier’s clothing, a band of Confederate soldiers come up from behind] Returning to his journey, he soon realized he was not alone. Fambing immediately realized he did not belong to this place at this time. [the not-too-bright soldiers salute Fambing and he nervously salutes back] But this time and place seemed more than happy to have him. [Fambing opens the coat to reveal the name "Woodruff" sewn inside; as he walks away, the soldiers blindly follow him] Decorated for his bravery at Missionary Ridge and the second battle at Meffreeseborough, Fambing went on to found his own branch of the Woodruff family tree. [back in the morgue, Ned valiantly fights off Woodruff]
Wilfred Woodruff: This sword was supposed to be buried with my grandpa, instead it shows up at some online auction, at which I take umbrage! [OUTSIDE: Oblivious to the battle inside, Chuck is still trying to pull Emerson out]
Chuck: Remember: mind over matter makes Pooh unfatter.
Emerson: I might be stuck, but I can still reach my gun. [MORGUE CELLAR: Woodruff is successfully backing Ned up the stairs]
Wilfred Woodruff: I thought you should know I was thrice named Alternate Swordmaster at the Southern Area Regional Volunteer Military Reenactment Regimen.
Ned: I wanted to be a Jedi. [the men cross swords and struggle for control] You killed Louis Schatz and stuffed him in my freezer! I put food in there!
Wilfred Woodruff: It wasn’t my fault: it just happened! Not like you killed Lawrence Schatz!
Ned: Did not!
Wilfred Woodruff: I saw you!
Ned: You didn’t see squat!
Narrator: Wilfred Woodruff saw more than squat when he approached Lawrence Schatz about his great-great-great-great grandfather’s sword. [FLASHBACK: Woodruff approaches Lawrence Schatz after he collapses in the bathroom and sees Ned run out of the viewing room, chasing Chuck’s hearse] He saw The Pie Maker fleeing the scene of Lawrence Schatz’s murder.
Ned: I didn’t touch Lawrence Schatz, not until after he died and in his coffin.
Wilfred Woodruff: I didn’t touch Louis Schatz: not until after he died. And I rolled him onto a dolly truck.
Ned: But you wrote a nasty letter!
Wilfred Woodruff: I wrote a death threat. Then someone died. That has a way of coming back to haunt you.
Ned: You framed someone for murder, you ass!
Wilfred Woodruff: I had no choice!
Ned: Of course you did! Everything we do is a choice: highway or side street, kiss her or keep her, we make choices and we live with the consequences, if someone gets hurt on the way, we ask for forgiveness, it’s the best anyone can do!
Wilfred Woodruff: I can do better! [Ned leaps off the staircase and drags a red curtain down to safety. Suddenly, Chuck appears at the top of the stairs]
Chuck: Ned? [Woodruff sees her and starts to run up the stairs; Ned throws his sword vertically into a wall so that Woodruff trips and falls backwards; Ned catches Woodruff’s sword. Woodruff gets up right by Emerson’s lower body when Chuck seizes an opportunity:]
Chuck: Pooh! Kick, Pooh! Kick! [Emerson kicks out his legs and knocks Woodruff out; Chuck sees Ned draped in the red curtain holding the sword]
Narrator: At that very moment, Chuck saw The Pie Maker – perhaps not as he really was, but as he would always appear to her – as Prince Charming. [the curtain falls off the rod to reveal a cabinet full of precious heirlooms. THE PIE HOLE: Olive enters with renewed hope and newfound knowledge]
Narrator: Olive Snook’s blood stirred with revelation and opportunity: she could see that Chuck had faked her death for some nefarious purpose.
Olive: I could smell trouble on her like she stepped in it and it stuck to her heel.
Narrator: What she couldn’t see was the distant glimmer of her own Prince Charming. [she notices that the espresso machine has been fixed] The broken espresso machine – sitting there being pretty with no one to touch it – had been touched, filled with water and packed with coffee grounds. [she sips an espresso and doesn’t notice Alfredo watching her from behind the door] For the time being, the romantic gesture was lost on Olive: her espresso was much too bitter. But this would not be her last cup. [EMERSON’S OFFICE: He is looking at a placard from the Schatz Brothers Funeral Home. He gets off a scale and pats his stomach satisfactorily]
Narrator: Not at all bitter was Emerson Cod: he learned a lesson from the Brothers Schatz. It wasn’t what he wanted to gain: it was what he wanted to lose. He didn’t want to lead the life they led. Not to say he didn’t want to make a living off the dead. He made a decision while wedged in the window that day never to be wedged again. [CHARLES’ SITTING ROOM: Lily and Vivian are eating Chuck’s pie and smile at each other] At that same moment, Lily and Vivian Charles were enjoying a wedge of happiness with gruyère baked into the crust. [NED’S APARTMENT: Ned and Chuck are surrounded by heirlooms and are repackaging them for their proper owners, while on the TV:]
Newswoman: Woodruff was being charged today for his involvement in the death of Louis Schatz, a key player in the graverobbing scandal.
Narrator: The gift of life given to Chuck was indeed, the gift that kept giving. She went about matching hate mail with heirlooms, and regifting them to their rightful heirs. Like she had been regifted to The Pie Maker.
Ned: [suddenly] I would do it again.
Chuck: Hmm? [looks at the box she’s wrapping] I think it’s nice the way it is.
Ned: No. I made a choice and I would do it again. I let Lawrence Schatz die and if I was faced with that choice right now, I would to make that same choice. You could put me in a loop and I would make the same choice every time, that’s how confident I am that it was the right choice for me to make. I’m sorry if that makes me a bad person. But I’m not sorry that you’re alive.
Chuck: I like that you made that choice and the fact that you did it on purpose makes it more fun than if you did by accident. [they smile at each other]
Ned: I’m going to see if I’ve got some plastic wrap.
Latest page update: made by IronChefCrazy
, Nov 19 2007, 6:42 PM EST
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