SESSION #14 - BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY
On the street, Spike punches out a man.
On a train, Faye tranquilizes a man with a concealed device.
At the top of an escalator, Jet fires a net at several men.
Somewhere, a chess piece is moved.
The Bebop. Spike, Jet and Faye return to Ed and Ein.
ED: Welcome back... and how was it?
They all speak at once.
FAYE: Oh, they were just thugs! They went to the cops penniless!
JET: Dammit, was just a salaried employee that gave into his temptations.
SPIKE: Nothing to do with the syndicate. They just wanted money to play with.
ED: Then what? All of you caught the criminals, but no clue about the bounty we're really after?
Spike, Jet and Faye reach into their pockets, each drawing a king chess piece.
Gate Corporation Headquarters. The desk of the Head Executive is surrounded by tall stacks of paper.
EXECUTIVE: They still use paper just for all the complaints. Dammit, they're just harassing us. AND, it's a waste of valuable resources!
ASSISTANT: The e-mail server is going down from the sheer number of complaints. There is a movement out there to sue our company for damages...
EXECUTIVE: What the hell are the bounty hunters doing?! We already have huge bounty on him!
ASSISTANT: Yes, however...
The Bebop. Big Shot on the monitor
PUNCH: AMIGO! All you bounty hunters in the Sol Solar System, how are y'all doing?
JUDY: Once again, it's time for BIG SHOT!
PUNCH: We'll start with today's hot news! They apprehended the culprit in the series of recent Gate assaults!
JUDY: Really? The bounty on him was 12 million Woolongs, right?
PUNCH: But the weird thing is that 20 culprits were apprehended!
JUDY: What do you mean?
PUNCH: Apparently, they were all caught in the act, but none were the mastermind.
JUDY: Then you don't get the reward unless you find that mastermind?
PUNCH: But of course!
JUDY: Oh, my... I feel sorry for all the guys who caught the culprits!
Spike kicks off the monitor.
JET: Why the hell do these thugs that normally just rob convenience stores attack at the Gates?
SPIKE: Maybe there are fads in crimes?
FAYE: Like "Hyperspace Gates are the IN thing among today' fashion-conscious kids! That girl won't even look your way until you assault at least one Gate!" or something?
The ceiling fan suddenly shorts out.
FAYE: Hey, guys. Why don't we trade the information that we each have and split the bounty three ways?
SPIKE: What do you mean? You're the one that started all this, saying that we should research this case on our own.
JET: You also said that the occasional rivalry between comrades would be good for us.
SPIKE: Come on, did the reward amount make you lose your memory?
FAYE: What? You guys were really keen on the idea too! After all, we all wanted the bounty to ourselves, right?
Somewhere, an old man sits at a chess board.
The Bebop living room.
JET: In this case, all 20 cases were done the same way. All of them infiltrated the tollbooth deftly attached the hacking unit and in the exact moment that passing ships access the tollbooth to pay the toll they steal the entire balance from the credit card. Furthermore, the unit automatically sent the money data that it just stole. It immediately launders all the funds in a bank on Europa making it impossible to track where it went. All the culprits that were caught in the act have nothing in common. Age, gender, nationality, religion, criminal record. And on top of it, nobody has any of the money that they supposedly stole. Well, that's about all I know. How about you?
FAYE: The guy that I nabbed said that he was just following the instructions from a manual that he got through mail-order. Perhaps the other culprits are reading the same manual that he was?
Faye pulls an old warn out flyer from her coat pocket.
She hands it to Jet. Jet reads it.
JET: "A new criminal support software. Right now, it's a real bargain. For the low introductory price of 30 thousand Woolongs, you too can be rich!" What the hell?
FAYE: It's not easy to be a thief nowadays. I'm sure there are people who want manuals to help them.
JET: And where is this mail-order company?
FAYE: It's a store that's only on the net, so I don't know where it was. Besides, the store has already closed.
JET: Spike, how about you?
SPIKE: The hacking unit that was placed on the Gates was something that couldn't be made unless you knew about the Gate system really well. The mastermind's likely someone who has some connection to the Gate Corporation. That was my hunch, and I investigated that front-
Ed suddenly crawls by with an internet chess board.
JET: The programmers would be fishy.
SPIKE: But the guys from the Gate Corporation suddenly became uncooperative. It was as if they knew something, but didn't want us to find out about it.
Ed lifts a panel from the side of the wall. She tries to plug the board in and electrically shocks herself unconscious.
FAYE: Are you dead?
Faye pokes Ed. Ed pops back up and proceeds to set the board up.
SPIKE: Where were we?
Jet pulls out a chess piece.
JET: Well, I guess those are the only clues we have for now...
ED: Gimme that. Gimme.
Jet tosses Ed the chess piece.
ED: This is a memory cartridge for playing chess over the net. This piece has one match in its memory. And, when you push it, it connects to the net.
FAYE: And this has something to do with this incident?
ED: Nothing at all.
JET: Maybe all of this is a game. For now, continue playing that game with the opponent.
JET: I'll go talk to the Gate Corporation guys once more.
ED: Lesse. Eenie, meenie, miney, moe.
Ed makes a move.
ED: Play ball!
Somewhere. A dark room. The old man connects to Ed's game.
Gate Corporation Headquarters.
EXECUTIVE: Another bounty hunter? I don't care, send him back.
ASSISTANT: But he's asking about a chess-loving programmer...
An elevator opens. Jet sees the bounty hunter Jonathan, a familiar colleague.
JET: What, Jonathan, were you another one that went through all the trouble to get nothing?
JONATHAN: This thing isn't that easy.
The office of the Head Executive.
EXECUTIVE: I believe we have given out all the information. What more are you saying you would like to know?
Jet lights a cigarette.
EXECUTIVE: Sorry, but there is no smoking allowed in this building.
JET: Oops. I'm so sorry. Actually I had something that I wanted you to see.
Jet puts the butt into the pot of a plant.
EXECUTIVE: What is it?
Jet tosses him a chess piece.
JET: This is a planned game. You guys at the Gate Corporation should know what this means. I mean, to put a bounty on a mastermind that we aren't even sure exists suggests that its someone you don't want the police to know about, no?
EXECUTIVE: Bounty hunters should just look for their bounties. I don't know who you are, and whether or not you used to work for the ISSP, but it's better for you to not make any extra inquiries.
The turns his back and orders his assistant.
EXECUTIVE: He's going home. Make sure he is kindly escorted out of here.
The garage. Jet pushes tunes his communicator.
JET: Damn this old piece of shit...!
He listens in on a conversation going on in the Head Executive's office. The cigarette butt he left in the plant is a bug.
ASSISTANT: I believe our risk is too great. If that gets out to the general public -
EXECUTIVE: I am fully aware of our risk. If we don't catch him, the situation will just get worse.
ASSISTANT: But why is a ghost from 50 years ago coming back now?
EXECUTIVE: To think that he gave everyone a chess piece... Chessmaster Hex...
ASSISTANT: So it IS a game that he setup...
Jonathan spies from a dark corner.
JET: Chessmaster Hex...
Somewhere. In the dark room, Hex continues his chess game with Ed with pleasure.
The Bebop living room. Ed continues her game with Hex. Spike analyzes one of the chess pieces with the computer.
SPIKE: No good. This doesn't have anything other than chess data in it.
FAYE: I wonder what they were going to do with such a thing.
SPIKE: If there is no meaning to the content, maybe the pieces are the message.
Ed claps her feet.
ED: Great, great!
Jet calls them.
JET: Spike, I have a name. Can you investigate the guy? He might be the mastermind behind this whole thing.
SPIKE: Hey, Ed.
ED: Ed's really busy right now.
Somewhere. The dark room. Hex makes another move.
The Bebop living room. Ed flails her arms in the air. She makes a move.
ED: Here, here! Checkmate!
The dark room. Hex is startled.
ED: Or so you thought!
Ed makes an unpredictable move.
ED: I'll fork the king and the rook!
The dark room. Hex laughs heartily.
HEX: Indeed! This is either an idiot or a genius! I like this chap!
The Bebop. Spike finds information on Hex.
SPIKE: Chessmaster Hex. Estimated to be 98 years old. A programmer that had been dubbed a genius from his teens. In the Cosmo-net chess tournaments, he dominated the champion's seat for decades. He began work on the Hyperspace Gate control program when he was 30 and created the central control system that all Gates use to this day. However, that was his fatal error. He started to doubt the safety of the Gates he helped create and was against putting them to practical use. As a result, he was banned from the Gate Corporation. Ever since, his whereabouts have been unknown for 50 years.
Jet on Hammerhead in space.
JET: So he's the mastermind behind our current string of crimes.
FAYE: What do you mean? I mean, why is he seeking revenge 50 years after the fact?
SPIKE: If we figure out where he is, we'll know for sure. Hey, Ed.
ED: Ed's really busy right now.
FAYE: Hey, you, quit playing games so much and help out a little.
Faye reaches for the chessboard. Ed grabs it, turns to Faye and growls.
SPIKE: Ed, we want to figure out where a guy named Hex is.
ED: Hex... Hex... The Chessmaster?! That's who I'm playing chess against right now!
The Bebop takes off. Jonathan follows in his ship.
The Bebop control room.
JET: We're almost at the location we got from the trace we did on Ed's chess opponent. You guys standing by?
Spike in space suit in Swordfish II.
SPIKE: I really don't like this. I mean, he's basically giving us his exact location.
Faye in space suit above Spike in Red Tail.
FAYE: Can we even trust that trace in the first place? Ya think he'd be in a dump like this?
Jet in the control room.
JET: No, I think it was... that. I had heard once that there was a place where all the scrapped remains of obsolete Gates were gathered along with scrap metal and abandoned space ships and that there were people that started living there.
FAYE: Why the hell do they want to live here of all places?
JET: That area has no nationality, nor a government. You don't have to pay taxes, and there are no cops.
SPIKE: I see... It's the perfect place to hide yourself.
Swordfish II and Red Tail take off into the floating junk heap.
JET: It might be a trap. This might be the continuation of the game.
SPIKE: Whatever happens, happens.
Spike and Faye land and enter the floating heap.
FAYE: Looks like we have air.
JET: Then there is someone here...
The Bebop control room. Jonathan calls Jet.
JONATHAN: Yo, Jet.
JET: Jonathan! How the hell did you get here?
JONATHAN: Thanks for leading the way!
JET: You were following us the whole time?
JONATHAN: Tough luck for you, but I have important business with that guy. So I'll be going ahead.
Jonathan fires his laser canon at the Bebop and takes off.
The junk heap. Spike finds a cat floating along.
SPIKE: What the...
Faye spots tomatoes growing from the ceiling.
Spike comes across more house pets.
SPIKE: How the hell...
Faye spots a cache of homeless men.
FAYE: What is this?
Spike finds a flock of pigeons.
SPIKE: What is this?
Faye enters a smoky room and spots two hippies.
HIPPY A: Hi! Peace to the world and love to my bank account!
A hippy offers Faye a joint.
HIPPY B: You want one?
The Bebop. The chess game between Hex and Ed continues.
ED: Wow! Amazing!
Hex's room. Hex laughs. Suddenly two doors are kicked in. It is Spike and Faye. They point their guns at Hex.
SPIKE: Chessmaster Hex?
FAYE: All right, give up!
HEX: You guys, can you be a little quieter?
Spike and Faye are confused. Jonathan suddenly appears.
JONATHAN: Old man! Don't joke with me!
He points a large gun at Hex.
SPIKE: Hey, wait a minute.
JONATHAN: You won't get away with pretending to be senile!
FAYE: Who are YOU?
JONATHAN: If you don't hand over the money you stole you'll get a nice hole in your brain!
Hex pushes aside the barrel of the gun.
HEX: That's a big tube you got there...
Old Man Antonio suddenly enters.
ANTONIO: Hey, whatcha doin', Hex?
HEX: You gotta hear this. It's my first formidable opponent in quite a while!
Old Man Carlos enters.
CARLOS: Must be some player if you have trouble winning!
Old Man Jobin enters.
HEX: But before that, where's lunch?
ANTONIO: What are ya saying? You just ate lunch a while back!
HEX: Oh, is that so?
ANTONIO: Really, you've lost so much of yer mind that all you can do is play chess!
Spike and Faye step asside.
FAYE: Who are these guys?
SPIKE: Dunno. But you know, this old fogey...
JOBIN: Have ya lost it?
ANTONIO: Like you can speak... You...
Jonathan breaks down.
JONATHAN: To... To think my life savings are never coming back... Damn... Goddammit... Anyone and everyone, you and that guy over there... The world is all a mistake!
He starts firing his gun in random directions. Spike kicks him in the face and he crashes into a pile of junk. Faye takes his gun.
FAYE: What are we gonna do? This old man doesn't seem to remember anything about yesterday, let alone 50 years ago!
SPIKE: That's right. Hex is no longer here. Here we merely have an old man that loves games.
Gate Corporation Headquarters.
JET: Back then, Hex was riled up for revenge, and planned this all out. He made it so that this incident would happen 50 years later...during the one moment that the Gate program gets automatically updated. Even making those that physically commit the crime hold chess pieces to hint that it was his doing. However, to that old-timer, 50 years was too long. He went senile and had completely forgotten about the traps that he himself had set. Well, it works out better for you this way. Because now you don't have to worry about the fundamental defect in the Gates leaking out. Although, the price you paid was that WE learned about that defect.
EXECUTIVE: What do you want? Money? Or are you planning to leak this information to the press?
JET: Just leave that old guy alone. That's all I want. It's a good deal, isn't it? Ed would get lonely if she lost her chess partner.
The Bebop living room. Faye walks by and spots Ed on the floor with the chess board.
FAYE: You're playing that thing again?
ED: Not again. Still.
FAYE: Still? You've been playing that thing this whole WEEK?!
FAYE: I see. Well, good luck.
The junk heap. Jonathan smokes a cigar with a serene look on his face. The old men float by.
CARLOS: Yo, newcomer. You seem happy today.
ANTONIO: He's a really easy going fellow, isn't he?
JOBIN: That he is...
Hex's room. Hex makes a final move.
The Bebop. Ed screams and collapses.
ED: I lost...
Hex falls asleep.
SEE YOU SPACE COWBOY
FAYE: Love... It is to believe everything.
SPIKE: Hey, now, are you serious?
FAYE: Love... It is the heart that provides for all.
JET: Come on... was that what the story was about?
FAYE: Love... It is the heart that accepts everything.
SPIKE: You know, this is getting fishy...
FAYE: Whitney... you loved me that much...
JET: You really can't trust the previews on this show...
FAYE: A romantic love story for all you lovers. Next episode: "My Funny Valentine."
SPIKE: I'm sure it's a lie.
JET: Yeah, a lie. A lie.
MY FUNNY VALENTINE
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