Death Clock Countdown, part 6
INT-MOST SECURE LOCATION IN PE BUILDING-MINUTES LATER
FRY, LEELA,and BENDER stand outside a nondescript door in a
Bender, you're sure this is the most
Yep, right in the center of the building,
with good thick walls. Hermes stores
spare forms here, and I've stored lots of
...umm... presents here over the years,
and no one has ever noticed.
The door opens, and SCRUFFY THE JANITOR walks out.
Who are you?
Scruffy the janitor. Just checking up on
the contraband in here. Good place to
Through the door can be seen stacks of cigars, booze,
several wide screen TVs, CDs, and piles of Lovey Bears. A
section of the room has been made into a little sleeping
cubby, with magazines scattered on the floor. FRY looks at
Hey, it was an investment opportunity.
And who are you?
FRY instinctively looks toward LEELA to respond, but she is
using the death camera again.
We work here, but we need to stay in here
overnight, because a lot of robots are
trying to kill us. That OK?
Fine with Scruffy. Just don't ruin
Are those bagpipes I see in there?
Yep, Scruffy can really let loose in this
room, nice thick walls you see...
FRY and SCRUFFY enter the room. LEELA turns to BENDER.
Our death times are nice and stable.
Fry's seems to creep forward slightly,
but I've noticed that when he drinks a
can of Slurm it slides back to the
original time. Somehow we're playing
right into the hands of what's coming,
and I can't figure out why.
She rubs her hand over her eye.
Well, then stop doing what you're doing
and do what you're not doing.
Oh sure, why didn't I think of that
Hey, look on the bright side. If Fry's
times are really that stable, you've got
a betting advantage over us now.
LEELA stops rubbing and looks at BENDER.
Us? Who's us? There's more than robots
Oh yeah, the PE crew has placed some bets
as well. Hermes, Zoidberg, Fry...
Yeah, he's not allowed to bet on his own
death, cause he might cheat, but he
placed one on yours. Quite a bit of
money, I might add.
A glint of fire appears in LEELA's eye.
Fry bet on me? How much? For what time?
Hey, what do you think I am? I'm an
honest broker here, and all bets are
confidential. Now do you want to play or
not? There's plenty of slots left.
The horrible strains of a badly-played bagpipe float
through the door. LEELA stares through the door, lips
compressed, hands clinched.
"I want you to play it in the years
ahead," he said. And all the while--
I take it I can't bet on myself, but I
can bet on Fry?
How long is a slot?
Varies with time into the future. At the
time you've got on the camera, the slots
are one minute long.
OK, I'd like to spread my month's wages
over a ten minute period, or ten slots.
The winnings would go to my parents.
They could really use the money.
LEELA pulls out a piece of paper, writes down a time, and
hands it to BENDER, while entering a new countdown on her
15:34:35, 15:34:34, 15:34:33, 15:34:32...
The music stops. FRY and SCRUFFY emerge through the
doorway, arm in arm.
No problem, Fry. Scruffy will come by in
the morning and play.
A small favor for me.
As SCRUFFY exits, BENDER turns to FRY.
If you don't die in your sleep, another
three thousand bets will fall through.
So I'm going to stay in the room with
you, just in case, you know--
FRY AND LEELA
As BENDER exits into the room, FRY turns to LEELA, and
You're not so sad anymore! That will
make me sleep better.
I know you're really tired, so you can
sleep on the Lovey Bears.
They kind of creep me out anyway.
You know, I think I'm just going to stay
outside and guard the door. I'd rather
be alone right now anyway.
Are you sure?
Are you angry?
Why should I be angry, Fry? Here I am,
on my last night on Earth, most likely,
thinking that at least I have my friends
supporting me through this. Then I find
out they're keeping important secrets
LEELA stares expectantly at FRY, who looks confused.
So, are you angry?
Yes, I'm angry, but that's good. Anger
has kept me going all my life. In fact,
I feel wonderfully full of energy right
now. I can easily stay up all night.
By the way, you didn't drink your Slurm
this past hour, did you?
No, how could you tell--
You wouldn't mind keeping to your Slurm
schedule that I wrote out for you, would
you? The one that maintains you at your
original addiction level? I'd hate for
your death date to wander further, hmm?
She juts out her arm, holding a Slurm can. Fry
hesitatingly takes it.
Are you sure you want to be alone
tonight? Because, I'm a little nervous
about tomorrow..., not that I'm scared,
but I mean I'm feeling kinda...
Good night, Fry.
A subdued FRY walks back through the door, which slides
shut. LEELA enters a code to lock the door, and then she
grabs a chair and shoves it in front of the doorknob. She
then dials a number on her wrist thingie.
Amy? Hi, yes, I'm just fine. But I have
a favor to ask. Can you stop by my
apartment tomorrow morning and feed
Nibbler? Also bring some clothes for me?
Don't worry, my apartment's pretty sparse
--should be easy to find. And once more,
thank you and Kif for all your help.
You're absolutely right. A crisis really
does show who your true friends are.
She hangs up, and puts her hand over her face for a moment.
She then walks out of the corridor, reappears with a laser
rifle, and sits in front of the door, rifle cocked and
ready, staring fixedly down the corridor toward the main
15:19:11, 15:19:10, 15:19:09, ...
INT-PLANET EXPRESS CORRIDOR-MORNING, DEATH DAY
6:42:42, 6:42:41, 6:42:40, ....
LEELA has fallen asleep, chin resting on her chest, rifle
across her lap, chair leaning back against the closet door.
AMY, HERMES, and ZOIDBERG peer cautiously around the
You wake her.
No, you wake her.
Together, they turn to ZOIDBERG.
Maybe she's sick. You should go check.
This doctor prescribes a "no". She has
pulled out a couple of my spare organs
over smaller things than waking her from
Well, the DOOP troops are coming to
escort them, so we'd better get going.
HERMES is crumpling a paper form into a ball.
It occurs to me that a form U-459 has the
exact weight and thickness to travel
precisely the distance needed here.
HERMES arcs the crumpled paper ball through the air toward
LEELA. Suddenly a beam shoots through the air and
vaporizes the ball. Three more beams follow, drilling
holes inches from where ZOIDBERG is peeking around the
Great, always Zoidberg. Always shoot
LEELA is on her feet, sighting down the corridor. After a
moment she lowers the rifle.
Oh no. What time is it?
I never meant to fall asleep. I was
awake until at least four, and must have
slipped off around then. We should have
been moving hours ago! Robot Santa is
gunning the town!
Wait, you have a few minutes. Kif is
sending a few DOOP troops over now.
Just so you know, I'll let you charge
your time here overnight to overtime.
But not when you were sleeping. I have
to draw the line somewhere.
You're so sweet, Hermes.
NIBBLER runs into the corridor and jumps into LEELA's arms.
Nibbler! Oh sweetie, I'm sorry I haven't
been around. What are you doing here?
He refused to be left behind when I
stopped by your apartment this morning.
LEELA sets NIBBLER down, and he begins sniffing and
whimpering at the door.
Oh yeah. Guess I should let him out too.
The door slides open and moments later, FRY wanders out
with some serious bedhead, with BENDER following.
Wow, it was hard to sleep in there.
Those Lovey bears just kept staring, and
staring... At least those spare PI-314
forms make great pillows.
Ah yes, that was a very good vintage of
paper, that PI-314 issue was. Very good
for documenting irrational situations.
Fry, Bender, you've got five minutes to
get your sorry butts ready, and then
we're out of here.
LEELA, AMY, and HERMES exit.
At least she's not so down anymore.
Why should she? She's got a good chance
of winning her bet on you.
Bet on me?
INT-PLANET EXPRESS HANGAR-A FEW MINUTES LATER
6:31:23, 6:31:22, 6:31:21, ....
LEELA rushes in, slipping on her jacket, with AMY and
HERMES in tow.
Thanks for the spare shirt, Amy. When
are the troops coming?
Any minute. You might want to take a
moment to fix your lipstick. That shade
doesn't really flatter you.
LEELA glares at AMY, shoves a pistol in her pocket, straps
a knife to her boot, and cocks the laser rifle. As she
does so, FRY, SCRUFFY, and BENDER enter via the opposite
door of the hangar. SCRUFFY carries his bagpipes and is
dressed in a Scottish kilt. FRY munches on a piece of toast
and he looks at LEELA across the room as she finished
preparing for the day.
So all she knows is that I have a bet on
When it comes to gambling, stealing, and
whoring, I'm as honest as they come.
I've said nothing. Much.
FRY walks up to her, cautiously.
Here. Just grabbing something to eat.
(looking uncertainly at LEELA)
Want a bite?
No thanks. Drink your Slurm?
FRY makes a face.
Yes, haven't missed a one since last
night. I never knew acting like me took
so much planning. About last night,
We don't have time for this, Fry. I need
to focus on what's coming. Just try to
stay out of my way today.
The future doesn't know who it's messing
FRY looks at LEELA for several beats. He very much wants
to say something, but looks down.
I'm glad you're not scared, Leela. But I
need to do one quick thing before we go.
Another rock to shoot.
He turns to SCRUFFY, and nods. SCRUFFY starts warming up
on the bagpipes.
I was reading recently about my brother's
son, my, uh...
Right, Philip Fry. Anyway, one of his
life stories said a branch of our family
came from Scotland. I guess that's where
I get my red hair from.
You actually read something?
No, not really--it was actually a little
movie clip. Anyway, when Philip was
about to land on Mars for the first time,
he played bagpipe music, because just
before a big fight in Scotland, the
fighters played it, to scare their
enemies, but also to make themselves feel
He nods to SCRUFFY.
And when I saw the bagpipes last night, I
thought that today we're going into a
fight just as real as any real fight, so
why not play the music of my family, to
get ready? Because I'm not really ready
Now warmed up, SCRUFFY begins in earnest. The hangar is
filled with the martial tones of ancient bagpipe music.
Everyone except FRY covers their ears.
Screetsch! So that's where the Martian
national anthem comes from. I can
believe the scare away your enemies part.
But didn't they want to keep their
Great JAH's ghost! Excuse me, I'd better
start preparing your discharge papers and
Yeah... I'll go watch the front for
As the music reverberates in the open space of the hangar,
everyone except BENDER, SCRUFFY, LEELA, and NIBBLER leave,
the latter two with hands over their ears.
FRY however, seems not to notice. The music has changed to
a waltz, sorrowful yet solemn, and FRY starts to dance with
an imaginary partner just underneath the nose of the Planet
Express ship. His eyes are closed, and the traces of
nervousness on his face relax away.
LEELA is leaning against the wall, arms crossed. The
hardness on her face softens as she watches the lone figure
spin around the floor. And as FRY starts to spin his
imaginary partner, she straightens up and moves to join
him. However, SCRUFFY has just ended, and FRY makes a bow
to his invisible partner.
I'm ready. Thanks, Phil.
A slow clapping fills the silence.
Somewhat naughty, but also a little bit
SANTA is standing at the main exit of the hangar. He lifts
a bazooka onto his shoulder.
Scruffy's going to check the boiler now.
SCRUFFY hastily beats a retreat.
Wow, that's the quietest entrance I've
seen you make.
Dr. Zoidberg let me in when I knocked.
He was happy to get his present early
Idiot. No excuse to let your guard down.
(to ROBOT SANTA)
And why are you here?
Replaying official log of Captain Zapp
Brannigan, DOOP vessel Nimbus, two days
ago: "Cause of vessel crash traced to
absence of experienced pilot. Lt. Kif
Kroker was removed from shuttle duty at
the last moment at the personal request
of Captain Turanga Leela, whose
helplessness and confusion prompted this
captain to offer the services of Lt.
Kroker, with subsequent unforeseen
ROBOT SANTA swivels his head toward LEELA.
ROBOT SANTA (CONT'D)
Sometimes judging the naughty and nice is
easy. Someone clips a toenail and leaves
it in the bed -- clearly naughty, capital
punishment required. But sometimes the
consequences of an action aren't
immediately obvious, and the causes and
effects have to be traced back to find
those ultimately responsible for the
naughtiness. There are riots on Neptune
from the lack of velour. I'm going to
have to wear green as Santa this Xmas.
Justice must be done, and the trail of
responsibility leads here.
He swivels the bazooka towards LEELA.
Wait, it wasn't her fault Kif wasn't on
that ship. It was really mine.
Well you see, I kinda made the whole
thing start... I thought someone else was
going to die, so I brought the camera,
and Amy used it...
(turns to BENDER)
Bender, help me out here!
Preparing data download...
A screeching modem sound is heard as BENDER wirelessly
downloads data to SANTA.
Download complete. I see. Yes the
naughtiness trail goes back farther,
doesn't it? You, then Farnsworth, then
his father, then his father's father,
Hmmm...then Philip Fry, Jr., who was
named after... you! There you are again!
You're doubly responsible, first for your
own actions, and then for indirectly
influencing the fate of Farnsworth's
line, who invented the device that you
showed to Leela, which moved her to stop
Kif, whose absence crashed the shuttle,
which destroyed the velour, which caused
my green Xmas! Very clear line of blame.
(stepping in front of LEELA)
Yes, so in the end I'm responsible.
Leela was just a domino on the chessboard
(steps back in front of FRY)
Enough of this, Fry! I knew this was
going to happen! Remember, you're first,
And how the hell can you judge all
causality! If you traced all evil acts
to their roots, you'd end up trying to
Offering to take each other's
place...that is very nice of you. Just a
moment, adjusting naughtiness quotient...
He puts down the bazooka, and pulls a plasma rifle out of
Punishment adjusted. This should be
slightly less painful.
One moment, Santa. Haven't they been
He points to the DOOP troops, peeking nervously behind the
DOOP SOLDIER #1
Umm.. Hands up?
SANTA flips the bazooka up into his other hand and launches
several rounds in an arc toward the troops. A section of
the hanger wall disappears in smoke, from which all manner
of return fire appears. After a ferocious firefight of a
few seconds, no further fire is returned from the rubble.
SANTA stands up and swivels his head toward the Planet
Express ship. LEELA's boot can be seen disappearing
through a doorway on the opposite side of the hanger.
SANTA begins to stride toward the far door, when he halts
and looks down.
Blocking his way, NIBBLER sits on the floor, a hint of a
smile on his face.
6:19:58, 6:19:57, 6:19:56, ....
INT-MUNDA AND MORRIS'S HOME, TWO HOURS LATER
4:19:58, 4:19:57, ...
MORRIS and MUNDA are sipping coffee at their dining room
table, when LEELA and FRY burst in, followed by BENDER.
Leela! Phil! Robot! Don't you just have
a few hours left before...
Yeah, wouldn't it make more sense if you
tried to keep to a regular routine, and
simplify it so you could recognize and
flag anything out of the ....
Dad! Trying! Robot Santa and random
robots trying to kill us! Left Nibbler!
Moving through the sewers to throw off
track..lost them... need to get to my
She presses a button on her thingmajig...
Kermit, everything OK for us?
Roger, site being prepared now. Santa no
longer at PE, location unknown.
Thanks, Clobberela out.
(turns to her parents)
Since we are winding through here I
wanted to at least stop by and say bye.
Bye, Mr. and Mrs. Turanga! Hello,
Phil, call me Munda, please. We haven't
seen you for such a long time! We missed
you around here! Here, you must have a
minute or two. I just baked some fresh
Oh great! I'm starving. Thank you.
LEELA is standing, pistol drawn, facing the entrance door,
eye darting back and forth like a feral animal. As MUNDA
enters with a try of cookies, FRY picks one up, only to
have it swatted out of his hand by LEELA.
Sorry. No food.
Turunga Leela, I have guests in my house
and I refuse to let them go hungry! I
know you are supposed to die, but that's
no excuse to lose your manners.
Fry was nearly poisoned last night, and
we are getting close to his death time.
We nearly lost our lives this morning
because I let my guard down, and it's not
You have the camera, right?
I.. forgot to charge it last night... We
need to get to the apartment. No time to
charge it here...
Well dear, I guess you do know what's
best. You're right. It's best to be
Also I haven't made cookies in a long
time, so you probably aren't missing
But maybe I am.
He reaches out, grabs a cookie, and eats it.
Now that was a good cookie!
You idiot! You stupid, moronic idiot!
If my death weren't linked to yours, I'd
just let you wander around until a bus
Don't you remember from yesterday? The
buses are programmed to stop-
Figure of speech! Figure of speech!
(softly yet firmly)
Sweetie, that's enough.
Oh yes. He's so generous. He's so kind.
I'm the mean bitch that's trying to keep
us alive. Remember what I told you about
him yesterday? How's he going to get
himself killed? He's already tried once
today! And he's so kind! Right! He's got
a bet on my death!
FRY starts to open his mouth, but then looks down at the
No, Phil, no need to say anything.
Leela, you are my daughter, and I love
you dearly, but you've got to calm down.
Remember, "free and focus your mind"?
Now, obviously you are angry with Phil
for some reason, but for now you need to
focus on getting both of you past the
next few hours, then you will have the
luxury of dealing with everything else...
But the cookie! The cookie! Fry, why the
cookie! You just don't think! I just
can't trust your judgement!
Yes, there was a small chance the cookie
would kill me. There is a small chance
that anything will kill me. But the
cookie is important. It means something
to your mom. And I think it means
something to me. If I do die, I didn't
want to die remembering not eating a
cookie from your mother because I was
scared. And it was good!
MUNDA ruffles FRY's hair.
You're a sweet boy. I would miss you,
OK, all of you need to go.
He hugs his daughter tightly.
Remember, we've watched over you all your
life. We can get to your room. Would
you like us there?
I would love for you to be there, but the
DOOP is guarding the place, and remember
what you just said, "as few complications
I know. Still, it's going to be hard for
us to wait here and watch the clock...
LEELA hugs him back, and then hugs MUNDA.
It's going to be hard for all of us. But
you're going to be there with me, inside
me... you know that.
OK, mighty leader. Time to go. Money's
at stake here.
One favor, young fella. If you do come
face to face with Death, do me a favor
and spit him in the face for me. He's
taken too many of my friends too early
4:09:28, 4:09:27, ...