a screenplay by
based on the album by Pepper Coyote & Fox Amoore
Copyright (c) 2018 R.A.A.A.R.
INT. HOTEL MEETING FLOOR - DAY
The sound of footsteps ring through darkness in a distant echo upon tiled floor. Fade from black to a poorly lit hallway, covered in stained and cracked off-white tiles. A light overhead flickers. Cobwebs line the corners of the hallway. To one side is some construction equipment, roped off by yellow caution tape.
The footsteps become rhythmic as a set of heels joins in the beat with click-like percussion. Slowly, more varied footsteps join in the rhythm. The jingle of keys adds a bit of melody.
In a pitch black room, yellow light beams from around a rusted door frame. The footstep rhythm gets louder and faster in pace. A shadow slides across the bottom of the door and stops as it fills the frame. Keys jingle. There’s a pause. The door lock clunks. Light creeps into the room as the door opens.
DIEGO, a wiry, spotted hyena in a black heavy metal t-shirt, dark baggy pants, and all the air of a rock star or stage performer, walks into the room. He drops a set of keys into a chair, which erupts with a cloud of dust. KAREN, a short, timid looking fox in a skirt suit follows Diego into the room. She fans away the dust from her face and flips on the light.
Diego pulls a plastic tarp away from a large meeting table, dust flying everywhere. Karen bends over and lets out 3 short sneezes, sniffles, and stands upright.
What a lovely place you’ve chosen to meet.
(snaps his fingers and points to Karen)
Well, as you know, the con will go bankrupt soon if we don’t slow its growth.
Yes, I brought it up to you last week.
Yep, and thank you for that! Well, I had an idea!
ROJO, a husky with brown coloring and a singular flop ear walks into the room. Following him is HERMES, a panda bear, and DASH, a slender griffin.
Hey! Glad you could make it! That’s everyone, so listen up! After considering the financial info we got from Karen and last year’s incident which I think could have been prevented with more staffing, I came up with an idea to make the con more manageable.
Karen lets out a barely audible sigh. She rolls her eyes up, as to plead to the heavens and mouths “why?”
We need to shrink our attendance down to what our staffing can handle. And so, we’re holding the con in, wait for it–
(interrupting, wrinkling his nose)
Here? You mean, here?
Yes Rojo! Thanks for ruining my thunder!
Oh, sorry, I just meant this place is kind of a … a fixer-upper.
Hang on, you want to run the con here, in a run-down hotel in the middle of the desert?!
Karen buries her head in her hands.
Hey, as long as we can decide where to put registration, I’m not worried.
(pointing to each person as he addresses them)
Come on guys! First off, Karen, this’ll be cheaper; Fursuasion might go bankrupt if we don’t do something. Hermes, Dash, we’ll get the lower attendance you need! Something our staff can actually handle. And Rojo! Imagine how much easier your life would be with fewer events and a smaller con space!
Diego puts his hands up to emphasize his words
Because of last year’s fiasco of a con, the hotel is threatening to cancel next year’s contract! If we don’t do something this year, Fursuasion might not happen.
Yeah I remember. I was pulling my fur out when I learned the hotel was thinking about canceling.
I don’t like it, but the last hotel’s con space was pretty confusing.
It’s unreasonable to ask everyone to go to a different location every few years. This place is terrible! We might lose a big chunk of attendance.
That’s the point! Oh, Karen! We should consider raising the price, too. I’ve put enough of my own hard-earned money into keeping Fursuasion out of bankruptcy. I don’t want to lose my house and our con. Look, we need to make concessions to stay afloat. Step one: We find the worst location for a con. When’s the last time you heard anyone go to Reno for a vacation? Step two: We find the worst venue for a con. Look! All of the stores are boarded up, and there’s barely anything within walking distance. Sure, we may be setting this thing up to be a bit of a flop, but it’ll keep the bank from coming to knock on all of our doors!
Karen sighs and looks with sympathy at Diego.
Diego, this sounds like a really terrible idea. It’s almost like you’re trying to kill the con.
As far as I see it, it’s pretty much dead anyway.
INT. CLOVER’S KITCHEN - DAY
A burst of blue flame ignites on a range top. The flame calms and shrinks.
CLOVER, a polar bear of average build, sets a lidded stockpot over the flame. He leans against the stove, stirring a second pot. With his free hand, he adjusts an apron that reads “Bear-y good cook.” The apron clashes with a Hawaiian shirt and faded slacks.
(over his shoulder)
Just ten more minutes. How’ve things been at the art store?
A pencil glides across a page of smooth bristol. A few more confident strokes are drawn out to reveal a cartoonish horse chowing down on a huge plate of spaghetti. BAZ, a slender sergal with gray fur, dressed in colorful clothes and wrapped with a poofy letterman jacket, sits at the dinner table with her sketchbook. She holds up the sketchbook at various angles. She glances over to Clover and then back to her work, and she smiles with approval.
Oh that place? The new management was an absolute nightmare, so I quit! It was exactly the push I needed to get out of there. I’ve been meaning to go full-time with my art anyway.
Oh? You’ve got a couple months cushion in your savings, right?
Yeah, I should be fine…
Baz sinks slowly into her chair and hides inside her oversized jacket. Clover sighs and looks like he’s about to say something, but stops as the door bursts open and slams with a crack against the wall behind it. A figure falls through the door and thuds on the ground.
SAHNY, a hyena, jumps up, rubbing a hand through dyed-red, unkempt hair, a big smile of astonishment on their face.
Oh! Wow! You’re finally keeping the door unlocked! Glad I didn’t break it open it again.
I don’t keep my door unlocked all the time, I only do it for you.
(under his breath)
And for my door.
Clover walks around the corner of the kitchen archway, wiping his hands on a towel. Sahny hangs up their designer jacket, and turns to Clover. Sahny freezes in place for a moment and then nearly doubles over with laughter.
(in between laughs)
Oh my gosh! You kept the apron! The stare you gave me. Man, I thought you’d burned it by now! Ha!
Clover blushes, rolls his eyes and turns back to the kitchen. Sahny follows.
(over his shoulder)
Dinner’s almost ready. Since you’re late, why don’t you set the table??
I prefer the term “fashionably late”!
You know, I don’t understand how you can even be late. You live closer than Baz.
Sahny sets down plates and silverware. Baz, not looking up from her sketchbook, scoots her sketchbook out of the way as Sahny sets down a plate in front of her. Baz looks up at Sahny.
Hey, nice shirt!
Sahny stretches out a baggy, red shirt with a stylized symbol of a sergal head printed on it.
Awww yeeeeah! Bought ‘em soon as you put ‘em up!
Clover lugs the large stockpot over to the table, and he spoons a helping of spaghetti onto each of the three plates.
Sahny, can you get thistle on video?
Sahny, having already sat and started on their food, puts their fork down and gives a playful groan as they dig out their phone. Clover sits down and looks to Baz who is still sketching away. Clover nudges her with his elbow. Baz looks up at Clover with a scowl and sets her sketchbook aside before starting into her dinner.
(under her breath)
Don’t nudge a busy artist.
Sahny sets their phone down on an empty spot on the table facing the other three. THISTLE, a white shepherd mix with large, youthful eyes, appears on the screen, frantically waving at everyone.
Hi guys! Great, I was able to catch dinner! I was worried I was gonna be late. My schedule said eight pm sharp but I wasn’t able to get out of work until eight fifteen. What’d you make tonight Big D.?
Sahny barely stifles a laugh, swallowing hard to avoid choking on the full bite of spaghetti in their mouth.
“Big D.”? OH NO. Don’t tell me he calls you–
It’s short for big daddy! I came up with it at work today.
Clover covers his mouth with a napkin, his eyes filled with embarrassment. Sahny’s fork clatters against the plate. Sahny slaps the table and kicks their legs in a fit of laughter, nearly choking on a bit of food.
I’m crying! THERE ARE TEARS! I. CAN’T. BREATHE!
What? I … Did I miss something?
Thistle, you’re on the east coast, right? Did you go to AnthroFuzz?
No? What’s that?
That’s a furry convention near you. Um, it’s where a bunch of folk gather to dress in fursuits and hang out. The three of us go to a handful of conventions a year.
Oooh, yeah! Fursuasion is next up! Best. Room. Parties. EVER!
Oh? That sounds amazing! Are you going to that one, Big Daddy?
Sahny falls out of their chair laughing. Baz raises an eyebrow towards Sahny and takes another bite. Clover wipes his mouth.
(under the table, between laughter)
I. I. legit. can’t even!
(over Sahny’s giggles)
Yeah, we go every year. I used to volunteer there, but they keep moving it around.
Oh, speaking of which, we do have a spare spot in our room. Maybe Thistle could fit?
CAN I?! Oh, Big Da–
A loud thunk against the underside of the table. Everyone look down towards Sahny’s empty place setting.
Uhh, Clover, what do you think? I can search for the best flight. When do you guys arrive? It’s gonna be so cool to meet you all in person!
We all drive together. Probably to arrive, mmm sometime Thursday.
You should pre-reg now; the prices are pretty good.
Thanks, but I’m not worried about the cost if it means I get to see you guys!
(sing-songy, while sipping water)
A faint alarm sounds over on Thistle’s side of the phone.
Oh! Time to get ready for bed. I have an early shift tomorrow.
You schedule your sleep?
Sahny sits back into their seat while wiping away tears. Baz leers at Sahny, shakes her head slightly, mouths “Grow up”. Sahny sticks their tongue out at Baz.
Okay, Thistle! Good night, bud.
Don’t you mean “Li’l D.”?
Clover slaps Sahny on the back, who yelps quietly with a giggle.
Nah, that wouldn’t work. I’m just Good Boy. You know, Good Boy, LaCroix?
Wuh? That’s adorable. Someone should make a shirt of that!
Sahny shovels spaghetti in there mouth.
(with mouth full)
I should get going too. Thanks for the grub, old man!
Celeste is waiting for me.
Aww yeah, gurrrl!
Good night everyone!
BAZ, SAHNY, AND CLOVER
Okay, good night!
Clover hoists the pot back into the kitchen. Sahny clears the plates. Baz packs up her sketchbook.