Almost Paradise (2020) s01e06 Episode Script

Rise of the Kalangay

1 Kai, this was in your mother's hand when she passed.
I am so sorry.
Your mother was our spiritual leader.
We looked to her for guidance, as one day we will look to you.
When you are ready, of course.
Kai, I'll find out who did this and put him away forever.
But this is an opportunity for you to change and start a new life.
Take it.
He's gonna keep doing that.
Come on, guys.
I gotta get to my appointment.
I need my check.
You're a good daughter coming here.
Not good.
My mother was the spiritual leader of our village.
She believed so much in the power of the old ways.
She fought so hard to keep tradition alive.
She spent all her time using that to help people.
But me? I drank, I stole, ran with gangs.
Classic cries for attention.
You never though about following in her footsteps after she died? I believe in a gun and a badge.
The rest got buried with her.
And if he honks one more time, I'm gonna bury him, too.
Let's go.
All cars to the White Reef Resort.
- Homicide reported.
- Oh, no, no, no.
You guys done already? That's cool.
Sorry, I just I hate cemeteries, you know? I have this recurring nightmare where everybody I've ever arrested crawls out of their graves and tries to eat my arms.
If you guys can get me to my appointment quick enough, I can tell that to my doctor.
We'll drop you off right after we stop by the White Reef.
Wait, no.
- How's you guys know? - They text us now.
ETA ten minutes, White Reef Resort.
My name is Alex Walker.
I'm ex-DEA.
I quit the agency because my friend and partner betrayed me.
One of my first assignments took me to an isolated beach right here on this island.
I sold what little I had and bought myself a gift shop.
Just peace.
No stress, no drama.
Boy, was I wrong.
Must be some mess in there.
I need something decent.
Ocampo keeps sending me on these nuisance cases.
- Mm-hmm.
- Last night, he sent me on a lead that turned out to be a cow tied up to a power line.
You still got paid.
I get any more broke, I'm going to start having to give massages to Taiwanese accountants in the lobby.
- Oh, my God.
- What? No.
I'm not really gonna do that, Kai.
Man, I may have to do that.
I've hit rock bottom.
All right, I'll have dispatch let Dr.
Patel know that we're going to be a little late.
Ten minutes? 15? Detective.
Good to see you, sir.
There he is! The man.
The myth.
Hey, Chief.
How you doing? You still hiding behind a desk pushing papers? Do you see a desk anywhere? I see it right here.
Oh! Hey, kid.
Huh? You visit and Ocampo is the one you see first? Someone at the hotel tipped him off.
There was a car waiting.
Hard to be the chosen one, hmm? You want the title, take it.
My case load is murder, literally.
I had to book a flight to get away from the bodies.
Someone's watching you.
- Alex? - Yeah.
No, I know.
I just I dropped a seashell.
Got it.
Alex Walker, meet César Rabara.
Kai talks about you a lot.
All good stuff, I hope.
I call him to vent.
She says you're resourceful.
He's my mentor.
We have no secrets.
César! You got a minute? I told the men you'd take a look.
For old time's sake.
Oh, sure.
Coming? This guy bats a thousand.
I bat a thousand.
Almost a thou high fours easy.
- Now you've hit bottom.
- Who is this guy? Making Kai laugh.
Kai doesn't laugh.
Rabara caught her mother's killer 15 years ago.
He get a conviction? The guy shot himself before they could arrest him.
Rabara's case was bulletproof.
Got him transferred to Manila.
Drove Ocampo crazy.
He thought the promotion was his.
Where are you going? To watch Rabara do his stuff.
Maybe you can learn something.
Oh, I'm gonna learn something? Our victim's a visiting professor.
He's mid-draft in a book about pre-colonial mystical traditions.
The assailant is local.
Fragments of kaningag, a cinnamon plant unique to Cebu.
Not present are victim's shoes.
The killer didn't like that an outsider was poking around the old villages.
The professor's kalangaytotems were thrown against the wall.
In pre-colonial times, these birds were everywhere.
Now they're threatened with extinction, much like the old way of life.
Not that our perp is stuck in the past.
He has one foot firmly in each world.
He removed the bullet.
My guess wiped all fingerprints.
The killing was execution style, premeditated.
He wanted to stop whatever our professor was publishing from getting to press.
The question is why.
Figure that out, you have your killer.
One other thing.
He's short.
Angle of trajectory.
Sorry, sorry.
Parking meter.
César, you've got to stay on and work the case, remind Manila how we do things on the island.
Chief, it's my time off.
Come on.
- What'll it take? - Mendoza.
I'll take the case if she's on it.
She doesn't have the experience.
Kai or I'm out.
All right.
It's just the three of us then.
Mendoza, you're on the case.
Thanks for that.
I'll put feelers out for anybody who matches your description.
- Not yet.
- Why not? There's one detail I left out in there.
The killer's a cop.
One of us did this? Meet me at the station in two hours.
Don't talk to anyone.
- Your boy's wrong, and he's way too nice.
- Here we go.
The only people that are that nice are car salesmen and serial killers.
- You're afraid.
That's what this is.
- What? You think he's gonna solve this case faster than you can.
- I'm not - No, sorry.
We are gonna solve it faster.
- That's just - What's gonna happen? Yeah.
Go massage a lawyer.
I have police work to do.
It's not lawyer, okay? It's accountant.
And I'm not gonna have to do that.
I'm probably not gonna have to do I was wrong.
That was the rock bottom.
Ernesto, he's Barbie-dolling her.
Barbie-dolling? It's when you turn someone's head around so they see everything backwards, and then you melt the hair and make the eyes really big.
You take something nice and you turn it into something terrifying and insane.
Don't the girls on the block had dolls, I had a lighter.
- Alex, you blew up her last undercover sting.
- I - Don't blow this one.
- He's gonna blow it for her, man.
Ocampo's gonna have her chasing electrocuted pigs for 20 years.
- They were cows.
- Whatever.
The guy's wrong, and the proof is in that room.
Let's see what happened.
Professor's writing his book.
Assailant enters.
Scary birds are still there.
Hold on.
Back up.
The blood.
Pattern's wrong.
Why didn't the blood drip on the carpet? There's no blood.
Where's the wastebasket? - Really? - Just doing a little yoga.
It's called the Happy Turtle.
You have no restraint, do you? - I do not.
- Why can't you leave anything alone? - This isn't about me, Kai.
- It's always about you.
- Well, he's got it wrong.
- Maybe you've got it wrong.
- I don't have it wrong.
- Here we go.
Look at the blood pattern.
- And where's the wastebasket? - Maybe the maid took it.
And just didn't bring it back? Where are you supposed to put your Kleenex - or your murder weapon? - You are a child.
I'm not you're the child! Good comeback.
I'm telling you, man, they got it wrong.
- Maybe.
No one bats a thousand.
- Thank you! The splatter is the key, all right? If that computer was open when the professor was shot, that would have blocked some of the blood, but it didn't.
It's all there on the wall.
That means the computer was opened after he was shot.
The killer staged it.
He wanted us to see what was on the screen so that we'd go the wrong way, which Rabara did.
Can you get your hand can you get that computer out of evidence? I don't know.
Ocampo gets territorial when Rabara's around.
Just don't let him see you.
Look, man, if we can figure this out before them, we can get Kai back on the right track.
There's a problem with the spatter.
There's evidence of high impact velocity, but something is off.
You should do it.
You know why? Closer in height to the killer? That, and you're a better shot.
But this is checked out to you.
I need to get it reauthorized.
- It doesn't matter.
- It's protocol.
Kai, there's a killer on the loose.
Shoot the damn gun.
Harness a little of that girl that I used to lock up in juvie every weekend when she was 14.
Sometimes you have to let go a little and trust your gut.
- Is that real blood? - Always use real blood.
It's more accurate.
What do you think? I think we need to get ahold of the professor's computer.
Make sure that it is done as soon as possible.
Alamares, what are you doing? Making sure everything's logged right.
I heard Manila's paying attention now that it's Rabara's case.
It's not Rabara's.
It's mine.
Manila should know that.
- Got it, boss.
- Stay clear.
- That goes for everyone.
- Yes, sir.
- Hey, man.
- Hey.
Be careful.
Ocampo's putting barbed wire around everything.
- You own an iron? - Yeah, I own an iron.
Why? You always look like a thrown-out napkin.
How are we gonna make it look like like it hasn't been tampered with? All right.
Let's see what the professor was working on when he got shot.
"Similar to how the Spanish were threatened by pre-colonial mythology, some youth moving from village to city life were angry toward old traditions and aggressive instances of violent rejection has occurred".
- That's weird.
- It's true.
The Spanish thought the old ways were witchcraft when they were really just about finding a balance between good and evil.
The thing that really pissed them off was the village leaders were women.
That's just stupid.
Your doctor ever bring up toxic masculinity? No.
Not that history is stupid, man.
That's "Yay, women", okay? I'm saying the way this is written.
Look at this.
Youth "were angry toward"? Maybe hostile toward.
And then "instances" conjugated in a singular? There's no way a professor wrote this.
I'm tell you right now.
There's gotta be something else.
There's nothing.
No other files.
That's 'cause you're thinking like a cop.
Or a killer.
You got to think like a professor.
Or better yet, how about an ex-DEA agent that has to make his word count on his dream journal.
You copy, you paste.
Your doctor falls for that? Nobody wants to read what's inside my head.
It's like if Stephen King wrote a romance novel.
When you copy something, it stays in the clipboard until you replace it with something else.
If we want to see what the professor was working on, I mean, really working on, all we have to do is press paste.
"An impression from evidence gathered in Cebu will reveal the true killer".
What killer? And what impression? That's what we gotta find out.
The professor was working on a murder case.
Hey, subpoena his phone records.
Find out everybody that he interviewed.
Ocampo will never sign off on that.
- We could ask Rabara.
- No, no, no.
We're not going to ask Rabara, okay? He's just gonna he's going to want to do all the interviews and he's just gonna mess everything up, and then good luck getting your evidence then.
That would have more weight if you didn't just tamper with evidence.
We gotta come at this another way.
Search for all incoming calls to the island, okay? Anybody that called the professor's number.
Ocampo has access from his office.
- Good luck, buddy.
- Yeah.
Make sure that it's done as soon as possible.
- Chief? - Do everything you can.
- Computer's gone.
- What? Let's calm down.
I'm sure it's just somewhere.
It has to be somewhere.
You guys request this? Didn't realize you had a courier service.
You run a tight ship here.
You know what they say.
What? That I run a tight ship.
- You good? - Yeah, great.
I said stay away from this case.
Sorry, boss, I was stalling.
You said you're the face of the investigation.
I figured you didn't want them looking at a key piece of evidence without you.
Won't happen again.
It better not.
Three, two, one.
Mendoza, let me see that laptop.
According to the records, the professor called the rental car company, hotel, hotel, the airline.
- How's Kai? - Seems tense.
Thank you.
Well, that's because she knows something's wrong.
Nothing Rabara's gonna find is going to lead them to a Gloria Bautista.
- Who's that? - Somebody the professor called.
Look it up on your phone.
Let me know.
It's Bautista.
B-A-U I can spell Bautista.
Can you spell orangutan? Hmm? I'll give you a hint.
There's no G.
- There's one G.
- O-R Gloria Bautista, age 53.
She lives ten miles from here.
Tomorrow we bring Kai with us.
Why? It's always better if a woman interviews another woman.
You mean it takes her away from Rabara.
Kai? Ernesto wants you to follow a lead with us.
There's no "us".
You're not on this case.
In fact, you're not even on the force.
I know, but I'm trying to help because I'm thoughtful.
You've never thought about another person in your life.
Sorry, bud.
Mind if I cut in? Listen, Kai, all right? I'm worried about you.
You don't need to worry about me, Alex.
I'm a big girl.
Besides, I'd rather play with someone who respects me.
Is that better? Are we cool? 'Cause we got a solid lead.
We have our own leads, thanks.
Yeah, I know you do, all right? But yours are wrong.
I don't need you to come in and be the hero.
- I can handle myself.
- I'm not trying to handle you.
Then what are you doing? I don't know.
- I just got a feeling.
- It's called arrogance.
I'm pretty sure it's something else.
- I know you, Kai.
- You know me? You have no idea who I am.
When my mother died, when my mother was murdered, Rabara gave me something that no one else could.
He let me see that it was possible to get it.
And to give it.
Changed my life.
Gave me a purpose.
Made me stronger.
I'm not saying that you're not strong, okay? I know that you're strong.
I'm just saying maybe you're blinded by emotion.
- Blinded? - Yeah.
I Then what am I not seeing? Please tell me.
Other possibilities.
It's called the Angry Frog.
Now come with me.
It's one lead.
- Don't tell me what to do.
- Okay.
You came to this island to get out of the police business, so get out.
They couldn't get your shoes clean, so I bought you new ones.
Oh, how thoughtful.
He's thoughtful, huh? Guy's a tool.
I don't I don't know how he ever solved a crime.
Rabara grew up in the villages, so he knew everyone.
Applying forensics in a place usually policed by superstition, he cleaned house.
Well, there's more to it than just forensics.
Professor Thornton.
We spoke on the phone.
This is my research assistant Fidelio.
Fidelio, yeah.
You sounded different on the phone.
Well, a little bit of a head cold.
Apologize for that.
Is can we step in, please? It's a lovely place you have here.
And in remarkable condition.
Well, some of us still hold on to the old ways.
Mm, a good thing that is, huh? If not, my work would be impossible.
Bautista, did your husband believe in the old ways as well before he passed? Professor, why did you come here? I told you on the phone I have no interest in talking about my husband's suicide.
It's been 15 years, and I just want to forget.
I understand.
But if I may ask, are you absolutely convinced it was suicide? You already asked me that on the phone, and I answered you.
- Right.
- Please stop torturing me.
I'm sorry.
I need you to leave, please.
I need to lie down.
And, Professor, please don't call me again.
That kalangay totem, it's almost identical to the professor's.
Suicide in a Mactan village 15 years ago.
Same year Kai's mother was killed and her killer committed suicide? It's too coincidental.
And as you said, the totems match, which means they were both from this village.
But what did the professor want from her? I don't know yet.
The only thing I'm sure of is these cases are connected.
We need to see the original case files.
It's execution style, but the detail of the wound tells us more.
There's no evidence of anxiety, no drift in aim.
The shot was right through the middle of the head.
- Which means? - Which means this guy's killed before.
He's a cop.
Could have been in the line of duty.
I crossed that with anybody who's trained in crime scene collection procedure.
- The wiped prints.
- I pulled anyone between 5'3 " and 5'6" who grew up in a small town but moved to a metropolitan area.
A foot in both worlds.
Came up with ten suspects.
We need to narrow it down further.
What about motive? Stop the professor from publishing the book.
That was just a book.
His theories weren't even new.
We're overlooking something.
What? He's a white guy from England.
The only connection to the material is that he's been here.
Hang on.
He's been here on this island for months.
So? He's been looking at evidence on violence towards pre-colonial traditions.
Maybe in the process, he stumbled upon the perp's first murder.
The killer finds out someone knows his secret, he wants to take him out.
That's his motivation.
We need to get these guys in here.
- Not yet.
- Why not? Because if the killer's motivation is to cover up an old crime, there's another lead that just became very important.
What? Not here.
I'll tell you on the way.
The murder of Diwata Mendoza.
The last person to check it out was the professor, a week ago.
He was looking into her murder and he found something.
Do Rabara and Kai know about this? Not specifically, but Kai thinks the assailant killed the professor to cover a past crime.
Yeah, like killing her mother.
This is what the professor stumbled on, this marking right here.
Is that the death blow? No, maybe part of the struggle.
Struggle with who? Gloria? I don't think Gloria was strong enough.
Then her husband.
I don't think it was either one of them.
The professor didn't get an impression, he saw one a physical impression, enough to cause Diwata's scalp to bruise.
I know this.
- Paper? - Over here.
This is an unopened receipt pad.
You do actually sell things here? Just draw it, man.
We make a good team.
- You can't beat history.
- Our history sucks.
It's pain and death.
- Oh.
- Screw our history.
You know, I spent so much time resenting my mother for never being around.
She was always going from house to house, one crisis to another.
Some of them spiritual, all of them crazy.
Or at least that's what I thought.
But now I know what it really was.
She just really loved her people.
She just wanted them to feel safe, whatever that looked like.
You know, she just she just couldn't help herself.
- She was almost like a - A cop.
Hey, thank you for sticking around.
It's nice to know there's one person on my side.
Just try to get rid of me.
- Alex, you know what this is? - Yeah.
Kai's ring.
She left this mark on me when we were sparring.
We're supposed to believe Kai killed her own mother? No.
But somebody wants us to believe that.
Come on.
Who's that? No one important.
She's not picking up.
This is not good, man.
It's not good.
Has anyone seen Mendoza? Uh, she left with Rabara.
Do you know where they went? No idea.
This is all the evidence that points to the killer.
Alex, Kai fits all of these.
Yeah, so does Rabara.
Look at this.
That was taken 16 years ago.
16 years ago? That's a year before Kai's mother was killed.
Look at Rabara's hand.
- It's Kai's ring.
- No.
It's his.
When Kai's mother was killed, the killer took all of her jewelry.
The only piece they found was the ring she was holding in her hand, Everybody assumes it was hers.
What if it wasn't? What if she grabbed it while she was fighting for her life? Rabara killed Kai's mother.
Yeah, and he's gonna kill Kai.
I know where.
I don't understand.
What are we doing here? This is the lead.
This is my mother's cemetery.
Trust me.
Rabara killed Kai's mother, framed Gloria Bautista's husband, - then made it look like a suicide.
- Yeah, exactly.
But why did he kill Kai's mother in the first place? She figured out he was framing people.
That's how he bats a thousand, huh? You make up a crime and you blame it on somebody else.
That's why Ocampo was going through all of his past cases.
He's always known something stinks.
The professor saw a picture of the ring and he pieced it together.
Rabara had to take him out or he would have gone public with it.
But the only problem with that is you create another loose end.
But if he cleans that up, then he's in the clear forever.
But that means you have to get another person to take the fall for three murders.
- Kai.
- Yeah, he's gonna frame her.
And he's gonna kill her.
Someone's playing with us.
I'm going back.
No, no, no.
This is a joke.
Where did that lead come from? Did Alex send this to you? I bet you it was Ocampo.
He's doing it again.
Come on.
Do you see any cow anywhere? A cow? In a power line? Remember? I didn't tell you about that.
Sure you did.
You called in that lead.
You made sure I was alone when the professor was killed with no alibi.
You brought the actual gun to the firing range and made sure I was the only one who touched it.
You collected his actual blood from the crime scene and put it in a dummy's head just so you could get the DNA evidence on my shoes.
You're framing me for his murder.
Well done, Kai.
I knew you'd figure it out, though it took you longer than I thought it would.
You know what your problem is? You want too badly to believe in things.
You're like your mother that way.
Know what your problem is? You stand too close.
Now that's the Kai I remember.
I missed this rage.
Nice to see it come out and play again.
It's too bad you can't control it.
It's going to get you killed some day.
You made me trust you.
You made me think you believed in me! And the worst part is you made Alex right! Don't move.
Over there.
Over there.
The cemetery.
He's going to make it look like a suicide.
Why would Kai kill herself? Guilt over her mother, you know? I mean, it's a believable story.
She kills the professor to keep him from exposing her.
An old friend comes into town kicking up all these feelings of remorse.
Everybody's seen her acting strange, so she ends it all, alone, in the only place that she can't escape.
It's perfect.
Except for one thing.
She's not alone.
Diwata Mendoza.
How I miss her judgmental stare.
You know what the irony is? Your mother and I were in the same business, ridding the world of evil.
The only difference is I created mine.
You'll never get away with this.
Get away with it? I'll be decorated for it.
Don't be so sure.
Why me? You were my friend.
You were my family! Why would you do this? Because he killed your mother.
And he's gonna frame you for it, too.
No one would ever believe I would do that.
Everybody knew you hated her.
I didn't hate her! Maybe you don't now, but I was there.
Remember? You made her life miserable.
If I hadn't killed her, you would have.
Kai, don't.
Kai, put the gun down.
When I was 15, he told me he would give me justice.
Now he can.
Yeah, but that isn't you.
You're not a murderer.
Maybe I am.
I don't know anymore.
You have no idea what it's like to be stabbed in the back by the one person you trust.
Yeah, I do.
And betrayal eats you alive, but you can recover.
You pull that trigger, and there is no coming back, and you can trust me on that.
You become someone else.
Yeah? Who is that? Me.
Look, I've made bad choices, bad decisions.
I've let people down that cared about me, that depended on me, but that is not you, all right? And you know that.
Ernesto and I know that.
Your mother knew that.
So, please, huh? Put the gun down.
Let's lock this guy up and throw away the key.
What do you say? You have the right to remain silent.
You're weak.
I said silent! Book him.
Love to.
I've been waiting 20 years to do this.
Lock him up.
Why doesn't this feel like a victory? Maybe a victory is somewhere else.
I knew he didn't do it.
He loved your mother.
I loved your mother.
She was very important to all of us.
Your smile reminds me of her.
Thank you.
I guess we're both victims here.
Not anymore.
No, not anymore.
Mom, I'm gonna make you proud.
You'll see.
I wish you could have seen this island before all the developments.
I did.
It was a special place.
Still is a special place, even under all the mega resorts and the nightclubs and the memes.
A meme's a thing, not a place.
Man, no wonder no one will drive me there.
Speaking of which, how about giving me a ride to my appointment? How about I call you a cab? - Call me a cab? - Yeah.
After I talked you off a ledge? You'd be a murderer right now if it wasn't for me, huh? Let me explain to you something about human interaction, okay? When someone gets you out of the electric chair, you're obligated to give them a ride wherever they want to go for, like, a month.
- Why don't you just buy a car? - 'Cause I can't afford a car, okay? I'm rubbing attorneys, remember? You own a gift shop, Alex.
Yeah, well, come in and buy something, Kai.
I got snowglobes, man.
I got suntan oil.

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