Cincinnati, William stole Scotts car, drove round the corner and picked
up Dirk. They drove to Washington, D.C. together.
In the morning, hung over, Scott would awaken to the slow realization that his pals had ditched him.
Dirk and William had drugged Scott the night before with jello shots, and taken his laptop. And Scotts laptop had all his writing in it.
On the Pennsylvania Turnpike, on their way to have all of Scotts writing copyrighted in their own names, Dirk and William quibbled over who would get to claim authorship of all of Scotts works:
D: No no, give me The Thing or Im out: I quit the Unknown.
W: Ill give you The Thing if you give me That Kind of Couple and #148 and Cincinnaty.
D: I get the Cincinnati poem. I had to live there, damn it. You cant even spell it.
W: If I get the play.
D: Come on, William. You already got plenty of good political stuff, and plenty of drama, too.
W: So? It can hardly hurt to have more.
D: Listen to me. Goddammit. I need that play, William. I need it. Do you know, what, in fact, my actual lifelong dream is?
W: Get a job at a small liberal arts college in the Pacific Northwest teaching middle-class white kids about poets like T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound?
D: Nooooooo! Why are you not susceptible to hypnosis?
W: We covered that the first day of Curt Whites workshop.
D: My dream is to, yes, call me a sellout, write a fantabulous Hollywood screenplay. But a poetic one. Save American filmmaking, nothing less.
D: And? Cant you see? Americinferno is just what I need, a calling card. It will get me in some doors.
W: Okay. But I get The Thing.
D: Fuck it. On second thought, I dont need Scotts play: as a vehicle for my pursuit of Hollywood money (to be consumed with benign beneficent detachment), his didactic, pedantic, static two-acter is the equivalent of a Yugo on blocks. Ive got tons of great screenplays half-written in my dreams. I just wanted the play because its finished. Say what you will about Scott, he finishes stuff.
W: Like I dont?
D: Yeah, yeah, lets not get into another pecker-measuring debate about who writes the most. So take the play already. But I absolutely must have The Thing because it will last. It represents something so marvelous Im unashamed to steal it. Because I would have written it. If I had the genius of, say, Krass-Muellerbut thats Scotts department. Always has been. You know it. Anyway, I dont care what else I get anymore; just give me That Ball, too, because I was the first to suggest that Scott had created an exquisite diptych. So give me those two, take what you want, then divide the rest and lets quit this petty squabbling. I got enough of that from our dearly departed