First movement.
kitten   September 20, 2003

EXT. STREET - NIGHT

CHOI is sprawled across the pavement in what looks to be an uncomfortable fashion. He's clearly regaining conciousness as he struggles to his feet and takes in his surroundings.

It's a dark alleyway of sorts, fairly nondescript, but with a sense of abandonment. He's nowhere near the bustle of the city. Boarded-up buildings loom in the background, and there's not much light since most of the streetlamps are broken.

He checks his bankchip - still intact.

Choi staggers in the general direction of a more diffuse light source - the city.

GIRL
You looking for a real good time?
Choi stops and turns. Behind him, a dark-haired girl, no more than 22 or 23.
CHOI
What do you mean?
He winces at the stupidity of his own question.

The girl sidles up to him and prepares the rest of her sales pitch.

GIRL
Not just -- the hell happened to you?
Indicating a rather nasty-looking cut on Choi's forehead.
CHOI
That's.. a good question. I don't know.

GIRL
Looks like it hurts.

CHOI
Uh huh.

GIRL
Sort of makes you look tough, though.

Choi keeps walking. Or tries to. The girl is practically wrapped around him.
GIRL
Some girls like tough guys. But you know, around here, even one night can make a tough guy tumble.
Choi stops at that. A hooker with culture.
CHOI
You've seen Chess?

GIRL
What?

CHOI
Chess. Nevermind. It's a musical from way back. And speaking of which, I get my kicks above the waistline, sunshine.

The girl smiles, amused.
GIRL
Really, wrong gender?

CHOI
Right gender. Wrong priority.

He continues walking. The girl keeps pace.
GIRL
Priorties, huh? So, hotshot, what are your priorities?
Choi doesn't answer immediately. He continues walking, staring at some lifeless glass tubing which spells out RE-OWNED CARS in dusty neon. The P at the beginning has burned out.
CHOI
What's your name?

GIRL
'Manda.

She stops walking. So does Choi.
CHOI
Manda?

AMANDA
A-manda.

CHOI
Right, well, A-manda, at the moment my priorities are pretty simple. I just wanna get back to LA.

Choi starts walking again. So does Amanda.
AMANDA
You're in LA.

CHOI
I kind of meant a part of LA that has, you know, streetlights. And trains and busses and office buildings. Civilization, you know.

AMANDA
What, you think that's better than where you are now?

CHOI
It's where I live, anyway. And yeah, I think it's better. I mean, look at this
place. All cracked and broken, no electricity.. you actually live here,
or what?

AMANDA
Yeah, I live here. So do others. We get by okay.

Choi snorts.
CHOI
Looks like a goddamned war zone.

AMANDA
We have electricity, too. Generators, little windmills, that sort of thing.

CHOI
Fantastic. Doesn't really entice me to stay.

AMANDA
Works for me. We do our own thing. All that stuff - vaccuum-molded gas stations and pollution and ozone warnings every day and night and people gunning each other down in the streets, and you call that civilization?

It's clearly an important point of contention for her, though Choi can't figure out why.
CHOI
Look, who is 'we'?

AMANDA
People. Just people.

CHOI
Just people.

AMANDA
The people that people like you didn't want around in your civilization. Guess you call us vagrants or misfits.

She's kicking a broken piece of concrete down the sidewalk as they slog along.
AMANDA
Guess maybe we are.

CHOI
Yeah. Well, some of us like to keep up with the times. Society evolves. I don't like the cops and ozone warnings either, but it's not all bad.

AMANDA
Shit.

She stops walking.
AMANDA
Evolution?

CHOI
What about it?

AMANDA
Evolution doesn't happen like that, hotshot.

CHOI
Really.

AMANDA
Yeah, really. Stuff evolves when it's small and left alone.

CHOI
What's your point?

AMANDA
That your civilization out there, that isn't evolution and never will be. You're doing your goddamned best to make everything the same. If genes were all the same, animals wouldn't evolve, and if culture is all the same, society won't evolve. Get it?

CHOI
Not really. I don't see why this is such a big deal with you. You don't even know me.

AMANDA
All I'm saying is that if anyone is evolving, it's us. Out here. Where everyone is different, not being shoved through civilization coming out clean and homogenized on the other side. Your LA, it's not going anywhere, and it's grinding itself to a halt. We can all see that.

CHOI
There's that 'we' again.

Amanda barely hears him.
AMANDA
Things change, but not when you prod at them. Things change when they have to, that's all. Here, we adapt 'cos we gotta. In your pretty little LA, you adapt the things around you, and you stay the same.
She smiles cryptically.
AMANDA
Lots of luck, hotshot.

CHOI
What is your problem?

AMANDA
You'll see me around.

She stalks off around a corner, beneath another dead street light, and is soon consumed by the darkness. Choi stands for a moment, wondering what he's missed.

He turns, and continues trudging off in the direction of downtown. Towards LA, towards civilization.

CHOI
Weirdo.
There's an edge of doubt in his voice.

FADE OUT.