The Twilight Zone by Bill Kaba


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LONG LIVE THE KING

SCENE 1

A police station, Memphis, TN

The Narrator enters through the station door

NARRATOR: You unlock this door with the key of imagination. Beyond it
is another dimension - a dimension of sound, a dimension of sight, a
dimension of mind. You're moving into a land of both shadow and substance,
of things and ideas. You've just crossed over into the Twilight Zone.

Narrator takes a seat behind a desk. Tom Rollins, homicide Detective,
and his superior, Lieutenant Daniella Bixby, enter, discussing a case

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: I tell you Lieutenant, it doesn't sit well
with me. Something stinks about this case and it's gnawing at my gut
like bad barbeque and mushy collard greens.

LT. DANIELLA BIXBY: Tom let it go already. He died of natural causes
and that's all she wrote. Over and out. Case closed before it was
even opened.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Well I'm not satisfied one bit Daniella.

LT. DANIELLA BIXBY: All right Tom, make your argument again.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: First off, the guy had enough drugs in him to
start a pharmacy.

LT. DANIELLA BIXBY: Prescriptive drugs Tom. There's no law against a
man in ill health following his doctor's orders and medicating
himself. What's the point?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Except he didn't have prescriptions for all
of those different pills. And the coroner ruled the death "natural
causes".

The Lieutenant picks up the coroner's report and looks it over.

LT. DAN BIXBY: That's right. Cause of Death - Heart attack.
Means of Death - Chronic heart disease. So what?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: With a toxicology like that, it should have
read 'Means of Death Accidental overdose'.

LT. DANIELLA BIXBY: That's the doc's opinion and he has a zillion
years of medical school and another zillion years of practice looking
at stiffs to back it up. What else you got?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: There's the mysterious man leaving at noon,
just two hours before he died. Witnesses say that he came around every
so often. Always wearing the hat, sunglasses and windbreaker.

LT. DANIELLA BIXBY: So the guy is warm blooded and light sensitive.
What do you think, he was a drug dealer or something?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: I just find it kind of odd that he died two
hours later.

LT. DANIELLA BIXBY: Are you suggesting what I think you are
suggesting?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Yup, Homicide. Murder. Death by unnatural
causes.

LT. DANIELLA BIXBY: Get over it Tom, that's preposterous. The guy
was overweight, out of shape and over medicated. His heart just gave
out. Next thing you're going to tell me is that we buried the wrong
stiff!

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: As a matter of factHis body was never
identified scientifically. Only witness testimony. No finger prints,
no dental records.

LT. DANIELLA BIXBY: Tom, you're crazy. Everyone knew who he was. He
was the most famous person in the world. His body was found at his
house. He was surrounded by his fiancé, daughter and staff. Are you
trying to tell me that the guy buried in the family plot at Graceland
is not Aaron Elvis Presley, the King? And that he was murdered?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: That's my conclusion.

They stare at each other. Narrator get up and works to the end of the
stage.

NARRATOR
Death. Along with taxes, the only two inevitabilities known to man.
And in this case, the man is none other than Elvis Aaron Presley. Or
was he? Join Tom Rollins, Memphis Homicide detective, as we undertake
a journey of discovery, a journey into the unknown, a journey of a
thousand miles beginning with one a single step, into a place known
simply as, The Twilight Zone.

Exit Narrator. Tom is sitting next to a police sketch artist.

SKETCH ARTIST: Okay, I know you didn't see this guy for yourself but
this is what you described from eye witness testimony, right.

He holds up the sketch. Man with baseball cap, dime store sunglasses,
a bushy mustache, wearing a windbreaker. It could be anyone.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: That's what the witnesses say. About six
foot, hundred seventy pounds. Jeez, this guy could be just about
anyone couldn't he?

SKETCH ARTIST: Except today is you luck day Detective. I've seen
this guy around. And more than once.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: You're kidding me? Tell me more.

SKETCH ARTIST: The first time I saw this guy was at the Lonesome Café
on Beal. He was sitting at the counter eating lunch.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: And you remembered him the next time you saw
him? This guy, in this get up? I'm not buying it.

SKETCH ARTIST: First of all Detective, I noticed something funny about
the guy at the diner. Second of all, he didn't take off his hat,
jacket or sunglasses the whole time he was eating.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: To quote my Lieutenant, "Maybe he's warm
blooded and light sensitive".

SKETCH ARTIST: No, it was last July and hotter than heck. And the
power went out, and the place got as dark as my ex-wife's empty
soul.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Still not a big deal. What else you got.

SKETCH ARTIST: He order two sandwiches. Looked to be the same kind.
And he only ate one and left the other. And what's more, he left
ten bucks for three dollars' worth of sandwiches.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: The big tipper thing isn't that unusual but
ordering two sandwiches and only eating one is a little odd. You said
you saw him again?

SKETCH ARTIST: I saw him three more times. The next time, I was
waiting in line to do the tour of Graceland. Maybe a month later,
August last year. Same guy comes to the front door of Graceland and
the staff lets him in.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Now that's not just a coincidence. Did you
see him leave?

SKETCH ARTIST: No but I did see him at the dinner a few months later,
same seat at the counter, same outfit, same two sandwiches. Then again
two months ago.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Thank you very much, you've been a great
help.

SKETCH ARTIST: Hey that's funny.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: What's funny?

SKETCH ARTIST: You said Elvis's trademark line.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: What? Oh, "Thank you very much"?

SKETCH ARTIST: Yeah. But it's "Thank you very much". (She
imitates Elvis)

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: That's great. I got to get going. I have a
man to see about a sandwich.

SKETCH ARTIST: You mean two sandwiches!

Exit both.

SCENE 2
The interior of The Lonesome Café. The man from the sketch drawing is
sitting at the counter. He's eating a sandwich; another identical
sandwich is on a plate next to the one he's eating. A lone waitress
is behind the counter. Enter Tom.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Is this stool taken?

MAN: No sir. Make yourself at home.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Thanks. Waitress, cup of coffee please. Black.
Say, what's good here?

The Waitress comes over and pours him a cup.

MAN: I couldn't say sir. I order the same thing, and it's not on
the menu.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Say, haven't I seen you before? At
Graceland?

MAN: Could be. I have taken the tour. I mean, who lives in Memphis and
hasn't been to Graceland?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Yep. 3754 Elvis Presley Blvd. What a place.

MAN: Sure is. A little too fancy for my blood though.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: You mean you wouldn't want to live there?

MAN: Heck no sir. I'm a simple country guy. Give me a little place
on a farm away from the hustle and bustle of the city any day of the
week.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: You mean to tell me you wouldn't have
changed places with Elvis it you had the chance?

MAN: No way mister. The poor guy never got a moment's privacy. Every
time he sneezed about a hundred newspapers reported that he was sick
as a horse, that he ate his way into the oak sack and got himself a
twisted belly full of oats.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: You my friend, are one in a million. I bet
just about every slob in America would have traded places with the
King, may he rest in peace.

MAN: Rest in peace Elvis.

The man lifts his glass, Tom lifts his coffee, and they toast.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: To Elvis!

MAN: To Elvis! Rest in Peace man!

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Rest in Peace King!

They both take a sip.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Getting back to Graceland. When I saw you, you
weren't taking the tour. You were at the front door. And you were
let into the house.

MAN: Wow mister, you got a great memory!

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: So you know Elvis?

MAN: Not exactly mister. I'm a delivery boy. For Watson's Drug
Store.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: You delivered drugs to the King?

MAN: You making it sound like I'm some kinda drug dealer man! But
yeah, I dropped off Mr. Presley's prescriptions on a regular basis.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: And they let you in the house?

MAN: Hey man, I'm house broken!

He laughs and pats Tom on the back. Tom returned the laugh.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: That's funny. Hey, my name is Tom. Nice to
meet you..

MAN: Name's Reno. Vince Reno. Please call me Vince.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Nice to meet you Vince.

They shake hands.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: That names rings a bell.

MAN: Yeah. Reno Nevada, divorce capital of the world!

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Yeah, maybe that's it. So, you were a
regular at Graceland?

MAN: Hey man, you know I can't talk about that stuff. Doctor-patient
privileged conversation and what not. Confidentially. What if you're
a reporter for some sleazy tabloid trying to smear old Elvis's good
name.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Oh that was done a long time ago. Especially
these last years what with all the bad that Elvis had befallen on the
King.

MAN: That's what I'm saying man! Poor guy was falling apart and
the press wouldn't let him be.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: The bigger they are.

MAN: Come again?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS
The harder they fall. And no one was bigger than the King. Or fell
harder.

MAN: Hey, the guy was dealing with a lot of demons man. He was just a
simple country boy that trusted a bunch of city slickers and all they
did was temp him like the devil tempted old Eve. Same thing happened
to Mickey Mantle!

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: So you got to meet Elvis at Graceland when you
were making deliveries? Come on Vince, that's not confidential.

MAN: Yeah man, I meet Elvis. And more than once. He was one broken cat
man.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Broken. He was irreparable if you ask me.

MAN: Say, what's that supposed to mean?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: He was beyond repair.

MAN: Well, just between you and me, I can't argue that. He was a
wreck man. Look at the guy, already. He was hopped up on pills,
shooting his gun off within city limits, and pushing three hundred
pounds already. And just sitting around Graceland wasting away.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Maybe dying was the best thing that could have
happened to him, am I right?

MAN: Yeah Tom, that's what I'm saying. The King wasn't regal
anymore. Those last few weeks, he barely got out of bed. Not even to
play with his kid, that sweet precious little Lisa Marie. The guy was
smearing the good name and reputation of Elvis Aaron Presley. He
needed to snap out of it already.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: And you were just the guy to help him? With
all those pills?

MAN: Hey mister, just between you and me, I was trying to bring him
good pills, homeopathic, new age stuff. Stuff that the Dali Lama took,
and all those hippies in California. I was trying to save the King.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: What happened Vince? Why is he dead then?

MAN: Hey man, you sound like a cop or something.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Good guess Vince.

Tom presents his badge.

MAN: Hey man, that was cold man. Aren't you supposed to identify
yourself?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: To get a cup of coffee and chat with a
stranger? Nothing in the book about that Vince. I'm just passing the
time having an interesting conversation with a guy that knew Elvis.
Intimately. Provided him with drugs. Drugs that might have killed
him.

MAN: That sounds like an accusation or something.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: And your statements sound like the beginnings
of a confession. How about we go down to the station and chat some
more about your relationship with Elvis Presley?

MAN: All right man, I guess I was sort of confessing. I can't hold
it any more. I gotta tell someone the truth Tom, and now's as good a
place to start as any, and you're a nice enough feller and as a good
listener to start with.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: So did you kill Elvis?

MAN: Not exactly Officer.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Please. Call me Tom.

MAN: Alright Tom. I didn't kill Elvis. I killed Gary Trumble.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Gary Trumble? Who the heck is Gary Trumble?

MAN: Gary Trumble is the guy that was pretending to be Elvis for the
last three year's man.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: So you killed an Elvis impersonator?

MAN: Not an Elvis impersonator, the Elvis impersonator. Trumble was
the best Elvis impersonator in the business.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: And he was living at Graceland with the real
Elvis who was doing what?

MAN: Elvis wasn't living in Graceland. He changed places with
Trumble.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: And why would the King, the most famous man in
the world, adored and beloved my millions, trade places with some
cheap impersonator?

MAN: You just answered your own question Tom. Elvis was sick of the
limelight, the booze, the broads, the constant touring and attention.
Everybody wanted a piece of him, the Colonel, his so called traveling
buddies, his ex-wife, the fans, and the media. And the only piece
Elvis wanted was peace and quiet. Yeah, he traded that in with this
Trumble fellow.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: And you killed Trumble because?

MAN: Now that's the real mystery, isn't it detective? And if you
think about it, you know the answer.

Silence. Tom ponders the statement.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: You killed Trumble because he was making Elvis
look bad?

MAN: Bingo man! We have ourselves a winner! Give the man a kewpie
doll!

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: But what gives you the right to kill Trumble?
Unless you're.no, you couldn't be.

Reno takes off the hat and muffs His hair is in a bouffant. He peels
off the mustache. He replaces the dime store glasses for Elvis gaudy
glasses. When he next speaks, he makes the famous Elvis sneer and
sounds like Elvis.

MAN: (In Elvis's voice) What do you think man? I was just doing a
little TCB man, taking care of business.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: You're Elvis?

MAN: That's right Tom. Thank you very much!

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Holy crap. And you're confessing to murder?
Why?

MAN: Like I was saying, I was tired of the living under a microscope
and being leached off of by all those parasites. I wanted out. So I
cut a deal with Trumble. He became Elvis, and I became

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Vince Reno. From All Shook Up.

MAN: So you are a fan! Again, thank you very much. But old Trumble was
turning Elvis into a freak show. So I ordered him to stop. And he
refused. So I took him out. Yeah, I killed Gary Trumble.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: I can't believe this. And you're willing
to come to the station peacefully and swear out a full confession?

MAN: Yes sir. Just, can I finished my sandwich?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Is that a

MAN: Peanut butter and banana sandwich? It sure is?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: What about the other one?

MAN: I kind of lost my appetite for it.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Say, I've always wanted to know what it
tastes like. May I?

MAN: Sure thing chief. Better than letting it go to waste.

Tom takes a bite and swallows.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Say that's quite good.

MAN: Kill it man!

Tom continues eating.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: I can't believe I'm eating a peanut butter
and banana sandwich with Elvis. Or that you're alive.

MAN: Or that you cracked the crime of the century?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: That too!

Tom stops for a moment. Hey loosens his collar. He starts sweating.

MAN: What's the matter Tom? Banana's not sitting right with you?

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Something isn't sitting right with me.

MAN: Yeah, it's called arsenic.

Elvis produces a bottle of poison.

DECTECTIVE TOM ROLLINS: Whathave.you.done.tome?

Tom starts coughing. He loosens his collar more.

MAN: You see Tom, you're pretty smart. But I'm smarter. You think
you're the first feller to figure this out. Auf vieder sein Tom.
(Elvis starts walking out; he sneers at Tom) You've been a great
audience. Thank you very much.

He turns and walks. Tom stands and reaches out. Elvis sings.

MAN: (Singing) Are you lonesome tonight? Do you miss me tonight? Are
you sorry we drifted apart?

The Narrator opens the door for Elvis, who begins to walk out. Tom
falls to the floor, dead.

MAN: Elvis has left the building. Good night everybody.

NARRATOR: The last stop on a long journey, as yet another human being
returns to the vast nothingness that is the beginning and into the
dust that is always the end. This station happens to go by the name
of, The Twilight Zone.


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