Scene 3

INT. MICHELLE’S APARTMENT – DAY

Michelle sits in front of her desk in her CONsent uniform. She is awkwardly rigid and has a headset on. Sekel is on the screen. He rolls his chair back to pull a stack of papers from his fax machine. Michelle presses her lips nervously as he flips through a few pages. He sets it aside and looks back up at her.

SEKEL

I understand an NDA is unusual at this step of the interview process, but as you learn more about our operation, you will understand.

(beat, glances away)

Before we begin, I’m sorry to hear about the death of your… husband?

MICHELLE

Thank you. It’s actually very common people ask for him.

SEKEL

Still, I’d like to apologize for not doing more research before I called. I assure you, that is uncharacteristic. I was under a…

(beat)

A unique amount of pressure.

MICHELLE

(nodding)

I appreciate your apology.

SEKEL

Now, tell me a little bit about CON-sent. Is it CON-sent or CONsent?

MICHELLE

I usually call is CON-sent, but leaving it up to the customer actually reveals to us a bit about their needs or attitude.

Sekel looks torn between being impressed and confused.

MICHELLE

My husband started the company to perform as a safety team for anime and science fiction conventions. Over time, it just expanded and took a more permanent form as a professional private security and protection team. We still work conventions and events like marches and rallies. We’ve worked alongside the Secret Service at rallies for both 46 and 47. The Kardashians hire a team whenever they visit or have local events. We have a semi-permanent anti-stalker team at one of Taylor Swift’s residences. Right now we’re working three nights at our area’s premier nightclub.

SEKEL

(leaning forward excitedly)

My wife loves Taylor Swift. Can you tell us some dirt?

MICHELLE

(also leaning forward)

No.

She sits back with a composed shake of her head.

SEKEL

Very good.

(beat)

Well, I’m sure you’re curious about our operation and what Sekel Corp. is all about.

MICHELLE

Absolutely, very. I did a bit of research, but all I could come up with is that it is a pharmaceutical company and government contractor.

SEKEL

Both of those are correct. Sekel Corp. researches and develops medications for abnormal psychological conditions, particularly those associated with violent or self-harming behavior. We are seeking a private security force for a small, semi-open community known as Hattersville, population twelve-hundred, occupied by Sekel Corp. employees, their spouses, and patients undergoing treatment using highly-experimental drugs. The location is classified, and there is nothing to distinguish the employees from the patients.

MICHELLE

So, Hattersville refers to…

SEKEL

(clears throat)

Yes. We are not beyond a little humor. That name was selected by popular vote during our annual potluck.

(beat, clears throat)

One of the reasons your team came so… highly-recommended is that your staff is over sixty-five percent appear to have some experience with violent or self-harming patients, as EMTs, firefighters, police officers. And did I read that you have experience yourself? You went to graduate school for abnormal psychology?

MICHELLE

(hesitantly)

I studied abnormal psychology for a year and a half before I switched to criminal justice and law enforcement.

SEKEL

(raising a brow)

Not your cup of tea?

MICHELLE

It’s far easier to experience in fiction.

Sekel narrows his eyes and nods.

MICHELLE

Which is not to say – I mean that from a studying point of view. Law enforcement and crime prevention are entirely different…

(weakly)

Perspectives.

Sekel continues to nod skeptically. He looks down to scribble a note. Michelle sighs, knowing she has just bombed.

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