Hecate’s Tear part 3

I had entertained the notion of just posting the rest of the screenplay today, since I’ve been very slow in posting only once a week and that means I’m looking at an entire month dedicated to this screenplay. Then I looked and realized I was barely half-way through it. So today is part 3, next week will finish it. And then we shall start up on April 1st with something kind of cool. It will not be an April Fool’s joke though, I guarantee that much. Without further ado, the continuation. 

EXT. GRAND LIBRARY – EVENING

Arachne exits the Library, and heads back towards the market. A figure steps out of the shadows of the stair and begins to follow her, keeping out of sight.

It reaches out, ready to snag Arachne’s bag.

ARACHNE
You try it and you’ll lose it Reeves.

REEVES laughs and steps out of the shadows, falling into step beside Arachne. He is an older man, probably in his forties at best. He’s lean and hard with steely hair and a well-trimmed beard.

REEVES
Come on Arachne. ‘Twas only a bit of fun, keep you on your toes.

ARACHNE
Right, because you thought you could surprise me when I was the
one who told you to meet me here.

REEVES
Worth a shot at least, don’t you think? So, which of these fine
establishments are we hitting tonight?

ARACHNE
None of them

Reeves raises an eyebrow

REEVES
So Arachne, The Great Loner, Miss “I Work Alone” asks me to meet her
in the middle of the largest concentration of wealth in the city.

Reeves gestures around them to the opulant houses of the nobles and merchants

REEVES (CONT’D)
And we’re not going after any big score?

Arachne reaches into her bag and pulls out a small scroll, sealed with wax.

ARACHNE
These are the original plans to the house of John Uncia, the spice merchant.

REEVES
And?

ARACHNE
They detail the secret passage, the traps, and the location of his
personal vault. They’re yours if you do exactly as I say.

Reeves accepts the scroll, practically salivating at the massive amount of money this means. Then his instincts kick in. Arachne is undoing her ponytail and beginning to braid her hair as they walk.

REEVES
This is an… impressive amount. You know, I got out of the more
unsavory-

ARACHNE
Don’t worry, I’m not asking you to kill anyone, or really do anything
that should push your skills in any way.

REEVES
That’s good. I like ya girl, but I’m a different man now.

ARACHNE
I know Reeves, otherwise I wouldn’t trust you at all. I’m going to meet
with a friend for drinks at the Silver Stallion, your job is to
make sure that all my drinks are watered down.

REEVES
That-That’s it?! You hand me a kingdom’s worth of wealth to make
sure ya don’t get drunk?

ARACHNE
And to forget that we met tonight. I mean it, no one is to know.

REEVES
And if I decide that this is something that the Boss needs to
know about?

ARACHNE
Then you’ll regret it.

REEVES
Ha, and what do you think you could do to me? I taught you knife work.

Arachne grins, the look is feral, crazed with her hair still partially done in some intricate braiding.

ARACHNE
I’ll tell Douther where his wife goes while he’s out conning.

Reeves grimaces, placing the scroll in a hidden pocket of his jacket.

REEVES
You, madam, are a right bitch.

He looks at Arachne grinning, his face freezes, turning into fear.

REEVES (CONT’D)
By the- What do you think you are doing! That is reserved for-

Arachne has finished with her hair, the braid is an intricate fishscale pattern that wraps around her head in a series of loops. It’s impossible to tell exactly where one
braid ends and the other begins.

ARACHNE
Temple acolytes? Particularly those of the Goddess Helia, blessed be her light.

Reeves grabs Arachne’s arm.

REEVES
You can’t go around impersonating a priestess, that’s-that’s-

Arachne places her right hand over top of his. Her whole demeanor is shifting, becoming kind, gentle, warm.

ARACHNE
You forget that I was an acolyte at the temple, until “personal
matters” called me away from my duties.

REEVES
But-

ARACHNE
And The High Priestess herself told me that I could resume my duties
whenever life allowed me the chance.

Arachne smiles slyly, a look unbefitting a proper acolyte.

ARACHNE (CONT’D)
Besides, who else but a priestess would a respectable establishment
like the Silver Stallion allow to escort a drunk young woman back to
her residence?

REEVES
It won’t work, you don’t have the seal. And servants of the gods
especially would never cover the symbol of their deity.

Reeves grabs Arachnes hand with his free one, desperate.

REEVES (CONT’D)
They consider it an insult, and you know what happens if you insult the
gods. Now, stop this foolishness before you end up-

The seal on Arachne’s hand begins shifting and Reeves eyes almost bug out of his head. After it is done Arachne’s seal is silver, with a double braided circle, and the symbol
inside is that of a heart, the top portion of which changes into flames.

REEVES (CONT’D)
Tha- That’s impossible. How did…

Beat.

REEVES (CONT’D)
you went to that crazy bastard Altai didn’t you? After his
experiments ruined James’ hand you went to him for the same crazy scheme…

ARACHNE
Yes, just like any of you would have if you thought it had a chance
of working.

REEVES
But it didn’t work. The magic of the seals is too well protected…
It shouldn’t have worked… unless, is it because you’re-

Arachne pulls back, her hard, street tough self fully breaking through her current persona.

ARACHNE
Yes, it’s because of that.

Beat.

They reach the entrance to the market square.

ARACHNE (CONT’D)
Meghan will be waiting for me. Don’t forget our deal Reeves.

REEVES
I won’t. I honor my bargains, but are you sure about this girl. It
isn’t too late.

Arachne walks away, disappearing into the crowd. Reeves stands there, watching her go, suddenly seeming wearied with age and memory.

REEVES (CONT’D)
Risking the anger of the gods, I hope it’s worth it. Whatever it is
you’re after.

FADE OUT.

EXT. OUTSIDE OF THE ROYAL ESTATE – NIGHT

Arachne carries the young MAID down the streets, towards the Royal Families ancestral estates. Her hair has been removed from her braiding. The maid is in a drunken stupor, fading in and out of consciousness.

MEGHAN
You know… I think I like… that… what’d you call
it…Ambro… Andro… aroo… that stuff. I feel…gooood

The maid slips and Arachne adjusts her grip. Her tattoo is trying to copy the complex seal of the Draganov family from the hand of the maid. The color is a brilliant gold. Multiple interwoven circles make up the exterior with a half-closed eye gazing upon a crown in the center.

They turn a corner, finally bringing the servants gate to the estate into view. The gate is average size, big enough for a farmer’s cart carrying supplies, and made of polished
copper. The Royal Eye is etched into the keystone above the gate.

Two Imperial Guardsmen are on duty. These men are clearly better armed and trained than the guards at the library. Their armor is polished, and inscribed with runes around the
edges, giving them mystic protections. They each carry a longsword and a flintlock pistol at their sides.

Arachne approaches, timid, and pretending to struggle under the weight of the unconscious girl.

ARACHNE
Greetings, may we pass?

GUARDSMAN 1
And what were you doing out so late?

ARACHNE
Celebrating sir, my sister just had her first child.

GUARDSMAN 1
Congratulations, but we just closed the gate. No one is allowed in.

ARACHNE
Please sir, Meghan will be in trouble if she doesn’t report in to
Mister Boal in the morning.

Arachne adjusts her grip, showing the Meghan’s seal to the guard.

ARACHNE (CONT’D)
We’ll head straight to our quarters.

The guard wavers, but he isn’t convinced

ARACHNE (CONT’D)
Please, I don’t think I could carry her all the way back to my
sister’s, and who knows what sort of people are out there this late at night.

He hesitates

MEGHAN
Don’ worry Anne… I’ve got the… bill. It’s only… proper…

GUARDSMAN 1
Very well, but straight to the servant’s quarters, no detours.

ARACHNE
Of course sir, may the gods bless you for your kindness.

The guard takes a gem from his belt and holds it before the eye.

CLUNK.

He and his partner pull open the doors, just wide enough for Arachne and the maid to slip through They close the gate, re-lock it, and resume their watch.

GUARDSMAN 2
So, why shouldn’t I tell the Captain about this?

GUARDSMAN 1
Because you know it would be wrong to force two defenseless women to
wander the streets this late at night?

GUARDSMAN 2
Sure sure… and?

GUARDSMAN 1
Five silver.

GUARDSMAN 2
Ten and I pick the bar tomorrow.

GUARDSMAN 1
Deal.

FADE OUT.

INT. SERVANT’S QUARTERS – LATER

Arachne lays Meghan into bed. The room is dark, but a single candle on the nightstand gives them light. It is a nice room, but without personal touches. The wardrobe, nightstand, the trunk at the foot of the bed, none of them show signs of heavy usage. Other than the maid snoring lightly in the bed, this room could have never been occupied.

Except, near a small window, there sits a small statuette of a woman and an offering bowl filled with fresh incense to be burned in the morning. The woman looks kind and gentle, with
long hair flowing over her shoulders and a simple robe. Etched into her chest is a flaming heart, the symbol of Helia.

Arachne hesitates a moment, then kneels before the statue.

ARACHNE
I am sorry, my lady, for wrongfully claiming to serve you. But I am
doing this for one dear to me. I mean no offense.

Beat.

Arachne stands, and reaches into her bag pulling out her thief’s outfit, black, well-worn leather with multiple pockets at the wrists, chest, sides, ect.

She changes clothes, folding and placing her old clothes into her bag. During this we think we see something on her bare back, but the poor lighting of the room from the candle
on the other end makes it impossible to know for sure.

Arachne spins her hair into a quick bun and places the bag behind Meghan’s wardrobe. Then she blows out the candle and exits the room.
CUT TO:

INT. DINING HALL – LATER

The Dining Hall is a vast space,with tapestries hung high on the walls and only dimly visible in the darkness. The floor is pure white marble, with dark mahogany tables arranged
before a raised rectangular dais. The short ends point towards the other tables and the back wall as the long ends point towards the side walls where the tapestries hang.

On the dais sits a beautiful central table upon which a handful of candles flicker, revealing BOAL, the Steward of the House, The CAPTAIN of the guards, with his plumed helmet
placed on the table near his elbow, the HEAD CHEF, and the Captain’s LIEUTENANT. Each man has a stack of gold and silver coins in front of him, and the Chef is currently shuffling a deck of cards. There is also a large bottle of red wine and fine silver cups on the table.

The captain looks at the young officer sitting on his right.

CAPTAIN
Something wrong?

LIEUTENANT
Sir… I don’t mean to question your judgment, but are you sure
this is okay?

CAPTAIN
You worry too much. Me and Boal have been doing this for almost
twenty years.

The Captain takes a long draught of wine.

LIEUTENANT
But if the King were to learn that we were-

BOAL
The Royal Family has not set foot inside this estate in a long time, son.

The Chef deals out the cards to each man. Boal picks his up and studies them. The Captain sets down his cup and picks up his cards.

BOAL (CONT’D)
And if they were to come they would not arrive at this late hour. No
one except the people here know about our little game.

CAPTAIN
And we’ll keep it that way, correct?

The Captain slaps a heavy hand on the young man’s shoulder

LIEUTENANT
Yes, of course sir.

In the shadows behind the Captain we see movement, none of the men notice. Arachne is creeping forward, low to the ground using the dais as cover.

She’s heading towards an ornate door behind the dais. The wood is pale, almost white, with carvings of an eye looking down upon a set of scales set into the hilt of a sword. The carvings are covered in gold leaf and the frame of the door seems to be bronze.

Arachne stops at the corner of the dais, almost directly behind the Captain. The light from the candles bounces off the golden door and pours across the floor. She can see the divide between where she can remain unseen and where the men gambling will spot her. She settles in, prepared to wait them out.

DISSOLVE TO:

The candles burn low, nubs resting in pools of melted wax. The money has changed hands, the largest pile of gold sitting in front of Boal, while the Captain is down to his last few silvers. The bottle of wine lies sideways on the table, empty. Everyone is a little tipsy, none more so than the Captain.

CAPTAIN
Damn Boal, if I didn’t know better I’d say you were a cheating bastard
instead of just a bastard.

Boal stiffens slightly, but keeps a friendly smile, if sour smile.

BOAL
Well my friends, would you like to go another round or try and win it back.

LIEUTENANT
I think I shall be withdrawing for the night. Busy morning.

The Lieutenant gathers up his coins, his pile is smaller than it was, but not by much.

CAPTAIN
I should try another round, but I know when luck is against me.

The Captain grabs his coins and stands, knocking his helmet off the table. It CRASHES against the dais and again against the floor as it rolls over the edge towards the golden door.
The sound echoes in the chamber as the Captain cusses under his breath and jumps down on the side towards the door to pick up his helmet, creating a loud THUMP.

As he bends, he freezes, catching the hint of movement. Did something just slip around the corner of the dais?

He draws his sword and makes eye contact with his Lieutenant. The Lieutenant nods and draws his sword as well.

BOAL
What are you-

The Captain silences Boal with a sharp gesture then indicates for the Lieutenant to cover the other end of the dais, surrounding the long side.

They advance slowly, eyes sharp for anything out of place.

The Lieutenenant jumps down sword raised as the Captain rounds the corner. Nothing. Quickly the Lieutenant rounds the other corner, towards the tables. Nothing.

CAPTAIN
All three of you start checking under the tables. We don’t need
some gossip telling everyone that we were sitting at the King’s Table.

BOAL
Are you sure that-

CAPTAIN
Move or I’ll drag you before the King in chains myself!

Reluctantly Boal and the chef jump down and they begin searching the room for any trespassers.

As they focus on the front of the room we see the golden door open slightly and something slip through.

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Hecate’s Tear part 3

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