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Four to Eight Hours

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Or, Miles Hard

Dan Davis

**Scene: Les Miles walks into the Mall of Louisiana. It is Christmas Eve. It is 4 p.m.**

Miles: Oh jeez! Just a few hours left and the whole goshdarned family to buy for again. Waited to the last minute, just like I always do. Bo always said it would catch up to me sooner or later. Okay, okay, let's plan this this day out. Failure to plan is planning for failure. Kathy, Smacker, Manny, Ben and Macy. Oh! There's a Macy's here! I bet they have lots of stuff my youngest would like. Her name's in the store's name and Bill McCartney always said there's no such thing as a coincidence.

So here what we're gonna do we're gonna isolate Macy's and have a want to get as many gifts in one spot as possible, so let's make a beeline for that spot and oooooh a merry-go-round...

/5 hours pass

Miles: Wooooooo boy do I love a merry-go-round. Just a straight-ahead fun time. No frills, just leadin' ya in a circle just like a pullin' guard. Now where was I, oh yeah, Macy's for my Macy. Man this place has cleared out. Should be no problem gettin' what I need now.

/2 hours pass

**Miles walks out of Macy's as the security gate comes down behind him. A single manager scowls from behind it as he lowers the gate, grumbling inaudibly. The Mall is nearly completely dark, save for minimal lighting.**

Miles: Alright, one down and four to go. Macy from Macy's. The selection was of a one, such that I believe she will enjoy, and that was a quality young man that helped me check out. Now on to the rest. And I've even beaten the crowds. Fine job Miles. Bo would be proud.

**Near the Boulevard entrance, Mall security staffer Milo Fortenberry holds the automatic doors open for Fritz Karlsburg and his gang of very slick, professional looking criminals.**

Fritz: The Mall is cleared?

Milo: Yes. It's nearly midnight. The stores are closing, I've made sure the security is clear. We can make it right for the safe in the central office.

Fritz: Yes but first while we are at the shopping mall, let us get a few presents.

**Fritz and the crew randomly break into a store to grab a couple of items for their respective significant others. In a ladies boutique, they stumble upon Les Miles picking out a fur coat for his wife.**

Miles: Hey there sir, excuse me, this coat is just perfect for my wife. I'll just check myself out with it and be out of your hair.

Fritz: MILO! YOU SAID IT WAS CLEAR!

Milo: It...it was...I know this man. The local college football coach. The people are always calling him a buffoon. Leave him, he is of no concern.

Fritz: Yes but first, Marco, bring me his fur coat. Then we take him with us and make sure he can't call the authorities.

Miles: Hey there friends! No need to get physical here! There are plenty of coats, this one is just the perfect one for my wife! Give me a chance to check out and I'll be happy to help you pick out your own! Hey that's a really sweet-lookin' gun...

**The crew brings Miles with them through the mall at gunpoint, heading for the central office. Fritz holds the coat.**

Miles: Fellas, fellas, I love caroling as much as the next guy, but it's Christmas Eve and there is a real want on my end of things to get my shopping done, so if you don't mind...

**Miles stops walking. The criminal nearest to him puts a gun in his back and tries to prod him forward, but gets a little too close. Miles rams his head backwards into the man's nose, then dives into the nearest store, followed by a hail of gunfire.**

Fritz: I thought he was just a football coach! Milo if he interferes so help me you will never see Christmas! Come, let's get to the safe and get out of here.

Miles: Woooo baby these men are playing for keeps! If I'm going to get the piece of my shopping done I'll have to pull the guard, kick out the end and run a little power!

**After a couple stops in Bath & Body Works, Corn Dog Express and AT&T Wireless, Miles accesses the Mall's public address system.**

Miles: I came here to do a job, and that job was to fight like heck to give my family a Merry Christmas. For the holiday to be in a spirit that would be one of being festive, and to show my wife and kids how much I love ‘em. But now it seems like fate has had a want to throw a wrench in those plans gentlemen.

Have a great day.

Fritz: What the hell is he talking about?

Milo: I don't like this Fritz. We need to get this done and get out of here. This has already taken too long.

**Fritz slaps Milo.**

Fritz: IF YOU HAD DONE YOUR JOB IN THE FIRST PLACE THIS WOULD BE OVER. NOW WE HAVE A TIME MANAGEMENT ISSUE.

Miles, over the PA: My time to shine.

Fritz: HOW DID HE HEAR THAT?!

Miles, still over the PA: My hearing is of a certain quality.

Fritz: Goddammit let's just get the money and get out of here. Marco, Franco, you two stay here and watch our back.

**One by one, Miles eliminates members of the gang. Marco is hung via a head-set audio cable. Franco is blinded by decorative shower gel and chokes on a loofa stuffed down his throat. Meanwhile, Fritz and Milo have made their way to the vault.**

Fritz: Let's just get the money and get out of here.

/click

**Fritz turns to see Milo with his gun drawn.**

Fritz: Milo...

Milo: Fritz, I want my cut now. Not later. Now. And then I'm getting out of here and you'd better not follow me.

Fritz: That wasn't the deal.

Milo: A lot of things weren't a part of the deal. I see no reason we can't change one more thing.

Fritz: Fine. Let's just get out of here.

Miles, from behind: Now this is unfortunate...

**Both men turn to eye Miles in the office doorway. He is unarmed. With Milo distracted, Fritz fingers his own gun.**

Miles: It seems as though you two men have fought like heck to reach a goal, a piece of success and a prize that you both can enjoy. But there is ALWAYS a want to have a quality of teamwork. A sense of camaraderie with your mates. Breaks my heart to see this happen.

Fritz: What did you do to Marco and Franco?

Miles: They got a little knicked up. Return is questionable tonight. But you two, my gosh am I disappointed! You came here, you had a plan, you carried it out, you reached your goal, but there is ALWAYS a want to enjoy that with your teammate! Always! And years from now, when you're older and you look back on this time and there will be a want to have relived this day differently men. Breaks my heart men. I really gotta tell ya that. There is a quality that is inherent here....you just gotta have it. A piece that when it's missing...the want to fill that space is tremendous, and it's something that...

Milo: WHAT DOES THAT MEAN!

**Fritz pulls his gun quickly, but Milo spots it out of the corner of his eye they both turn and fire on each other. Fritz takes his bullet in the neck, Milo dead center mass. As they lay in ever-expanding pools of blood, Miles stands over them.**

Fritz, gurgling as he drowns in his own blood: How...the plan...it was perfect...had every detail...

Miles: Sometimes when you have a plan and you think you have all the details, but there's not a detail that you ever could foresee. And certainly you would have liked to had that contingency in the gameplan, but that site was not in your line of vision to foresee. And that's unfortunate. But I know you'll get it right. You have to. You're going to hurt like hell from this. It's going to sting for a while.

Fritz: wha...(gurgles)

/dies

Miles: Merry Christmas to all, and to all a great day. What time is it? Let's go finish that shopping.