American Gothic (1995) s01e11 Episode Script

The Plague Sower

You mind? What? Ceasing and desisting with that thing.
I'm edgy enough, as it is.
Trouble sleeping? Trouble waking up.
This damn outbreak, whatever it is makes me just want to pull the covers up over my head and hide out till it's all over.
Sneden describe her husband's symptoms to you? She just said, "Get out here ASAP.
" Of course, that's what she said the time her first husband accidentally shot himself in the woods.
What? Yeah.
She claims he mistook himself for a six-point buck.
Sheriff wrote her up for hunting out of season and that was the end of that.
Okay, well let's take a look.
The radio.
I might better stay here in case something happens.
Sneden? Mrs.
Sneden, it's Dr.
Edith? Mrs.
Ma'am? Ben.
Here, let me.
Oh, God.
Now, listen to me! I'm sick and tired of it.
It's not my fault.
You damn stupid whore.
I tell you to do something, you do it.
Stop it.
Just stop it.
I'll stop it.
What is it? What's happening? Oh, my God, here's another one.
We're proud people, Sheriff.
Come flood or famine, ain't been no Tippett with his hand out.
Let's just cut through the pious bull and get down to business, A.
I know it's tough making a go of a small business these days what with the out-of-state chain stores circling around like vultures.
This ain't about the hardware store, Lucas.
It's about Go on, friend.
It's about me.
I'm, uh I'm having visions, I guess you could say.
Visions? Yes, sir.
Visions of what? Blood.
Everywhere I turn.
Open the icebox, there's blood in the milk blood in the leftovers.
I cracked open an egg this morning there's a bloody chick inside.
I'd say someone's trying to send you a message: "Cut out the cholesterol.
" Man, I'm serious, here.
I'm losing it, man.
I'm losing my mind, Lucas.
Now, you can stop it.
I know you can.
Man, I'll do anything, anything you want, just Please just make it stop.
All right, friend, take it easy.
Take it easy.
Tell you what, you remember that time your brother ran over that kid right in front of your store? No! No, Lucas.
Bobby wasn't anywhere near there.
He was up in Asheville.
Partner, didn't I just hear you say you'd do anything? I always have I've always done everything you wanted.
God, man, that's my brother.
I can't just Can't just sell him out? Well okay, then I guess you're gonna be seeing a lot more bloody chicks.
Here he is.
Relax, Wallace.
Remember your blood pressure now.
Sheriff Buck, what's going on in there? Your deputy wouldn't let me in.
Well, what for, Daniele? You look pretty damn healthy to me.
Come on, Sheriff.
There are unconfirmed reports of victims bleeding through their eyes.
Well, it grieves me that a few of our friends have taken ill but I give you my word that their recovery is well in hand, all right? Oh, yeah? Well, we heard the ambulance in the night and you're lying.
Calm down, Wallace.
You don't know what you're saying.
The hell I don't.
My cousin Roy was sitting in his truck at Tippett's.
He started bleeding out of his eyes and his mouth.
I know Roy, Wallace.
He's a good friend of mine.
And I've talked to him about that Tennessee sour mash he guzzles.
Folks, look, in a small town, rumors can act like a cancer.
This is no cancer.
It's something else.
You mind helping me out here.
People are running scared.
I've been telling them to keep calm but it might be more convincing coming from a doctor.
The Sheriff's right, people.
You just take ordinary precautions, you'll be fine.
You got another bleeder in there? She's an elderly woman with a broken hip.
Okay, there you go.
You heard the man.
If we hear anything else, we'll let you know.
It's Merlyn Temple, Dr.
She was such a beautiful girl.
Her daddy went crazy and hit her over the head.
Robin, I need two units of O negative right there.
I'm sorry, Dr.
Crower, there's nothing left.
That's impossible.
We've got 30 units on ice.
That was yesterday.
What about that help we were promised from County General? They called and they're not gonna come.
Why the hell not? They're afraid.
Son of a bitch.
You look like you could use some help there, buddy.
Crower, right? Billy Peele, Center for Disease Control.
You sent us some blood samples.
Yeah, right.
Did you find anything? No, nothing that makes any sense.
Has anyone on the staff gotten sick yet? No.
Then we can rule out an airborne contagion.
Just make sure everyone gloves up.
This is gonna tell you everything I know, which is nothing except four deaths, all from unexplained hemorrhaging.
You give us two days.
We'll explain it.
My office is right there.
You make yourself at home.
Watch this, please.
Yes, Doctor.
Well, the pump's still working, mister.
Nurse? Can we get a unit of plasma over here? We need to jump-start this old boy.
Jenna, I'll hook up Elroy.
They need help on the south end, go ahead.
All right, thank you, Sheriff.
You're welcome.
You had your chance, Elroy.
You remember last Christmas? I offered you a new lease on life and you just practically spit in my face.
You have a good one, Elroy.
What the hell are you doing? Friend of mine down the hall is more critical.
I'll save you the trouble and take this by myself.
This man's a goner, anyhow.
Boy, and they accuse us doctors of playing God.
Well, okay.
Methandextrophine, and your heart's froze up like an old 283 with a blown head gasket.
Whoa, partner.
You don't want to do that.
No, I don't.
I'm here to find out what's causing this epidemic and I don't know who the hell you are.
Lucas Buck, Sheriff of Trinity.
Billy Peele, Center for Disease Control, United States Government.
You touch another ounce of my blood supply you'll be giving up a quart of your own, Buck.
Yes, Dr.
Hang in there, fella, you'll be all right.
Hook that up for me, would you? Well? Well, what's the population of Trinity? It's 9,000.
Something like that.
Maybe tobacco farms and villages.
You know, lung cancer's king down here but otherwise people are in pretty good health.
Five cases of exsanguination in two days? It's not good.
Exsanguination from what? I considered Rhinosporidiosis, Ebola, bonebreak fever.
Hell, even the plague.
It's people bleeding from their eyes.
It's like something out of the Old Testament.
We've ruled out a bacterial agent.
Maybe it's viral.
Of course, these days you get so many different mutations.
Sometimes God works in mysterious ways.
A little help here.
A little help.
Tie him down.
You all right? You got him? Hold on, you got him? You got him? Okay? Gail is not here.
What in the world makes you think I'm looking for that old cousin of yours? Because I've seen you looking at her, that's why.
No, sir.
I'm here to make sure that you have a pair of these.
And a mask.
What for? It ain't Halloween.
And I ain't planning on robbing a bank or nothing.
You better not or I'll have to run you in, young buck.
Actually, I robbed these from the hospital.
I wanted you to have them, just in case.
In case of what? In case you get around anybody who's sick.
You just take these with you, you hear? You talking as the head of the civil defense? I'm talking as your father.
Have you had contact with anyone showing signs of open bleeding, ma'am? No, of course not.
I keep to myself.
Have any of your neighbors been acting odd? No, no more than usual.
Well, what about strangers? Strangers? Sheriff Buck's no stranger.
Thank you.
I know you're seeing blood everywhere and I know you're hearing voices, Mr.
Tippett, and I know you're scared.
You don't want to die.
You don't want to go crazy.
So I'm here to beg you one last time.
Please don't listen to him.
Close your heart and your mind against him.
Please, Mr.
Tippett, you're on the wrong side.
You don't want to betray your brother.
Please, I can't let that happen and I won't.
Tippett? You mind if I come in? I hope you don't.
What's happening? Mr.
Tippett? Come on, let's get you patched up.
God, my teeth.
What is this, Dr.
Matt? It's horehound tea with anise.
Smells like wet dog fur.
You drink it anyway.
It's gonna build up your immune system.
Medicine won't help you now.
Help me with what? I don't know.
Against whatever's going around.
I heard Jimmy Watson's daddy hung himself at the farm.
It's hanged.
It's not hung.
Just drink.
This puff piece they ran locally, it's a disgrace.
What do you care? You didn't write it.
It goes to the integrity of my profession.
Come on.
The profession of journalism has about as much integrity as the world's oldest profession.
Maybe less.
At least whores don't kid themselves about their motives.
Don't you give a damn about anything? Yeah, but not journalism, not integrity certainly not the truth.
Then what? You.
Don't even think But I do think.
I think about what it would be like with you, don't you? Don't you? Yes, you do.
Yes, I do.
God, Lucas, I'm sorry, but But? There's something going on at the boarding house.
"A plague on both your houses.
" Tongues of fire.
Rivers of blood.
I should've known it would come to this.
I should have known.
Come on out.
Go on.
What's the matter with him? Has he got rabies or something? Because he looks like Old Yeller out in the corn crib.
Sleeping spirit God so loved the world that he gave his only son You're gonna be all right, Dr.
"Whosoever believeth in him shall not perish.
" You just hang in Go on.
Blessed are the children, blessed are the meek.
The sick, the sick in spirit.
And God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son That whosoever believeth in him shall live forever.
You all right, son? I'm all right.
Yeah, you're a tough kid.
That's good.
You talk to your sister lately? Merly? No, sir.
Why would I talk to her? She's dead.
That's a good point.
Well, take care, son.
You know something, Doctor? Part of me feels sorry for the poor bastard.
Sorry or responsible? What makes you say that? I saw you coming out of Mr.
Tippett's house before he got sick.
You think I made him sick? I hadn't decided yet.
You seem to be the missing link though, somehow.
Just kind of playing God, you know.
If you mean that little tussle over the plasma.
I figured you were new and you needed to know who the players are.
You know who you remind me of? Who? This guy named Fassal.
See, he's a warlord in Rwanda.
Can't really remember which side he was on, but it don't matter I just remember being ass-deep in the middle of a bunch of sick people.
I mean, they were butchered and dying by the pant load and this jerk was holding up the deliveries of medical supplies until he'd taken his cut.
I'm not looking for a cut.
No? What you looking for? Respect obedience.
Who's playing God now, Doctor? By the way, what happened to the warlord? You threaten him with a syringe, too? No.
One of his own gunmen ran him over in an armored jeep.
Accidentally on purpose, they say.
Got to watch your back every step of the way.
See you around.
Don't you give a damn about anything? Yeah.
I think about what it would be like with you, don't you? Don't you? Yes, you do.
Blood workups on all three victims death is almost certainly due to disseminated intravascular coagulation.
It's typical plasma-to-serum conversion.
Factor 12 triggering the cascade system, massive mucosal bleeding.
The major, I do mean major, anomaly identified so far is that none of the victims was in a state of existing chronic illness which is essential for the sudden onset of DIC.
Therefore, the invading agent remains a mystery at this time.
It's 10:42 a.
Eastern Standard Time, Trinity, South Carolina.
signed William Peele, CDC, et cetera, et cetera.
And, Annie, fax me a copy up here when you transcribe it, will you? Thanks.
Excuse me, what are you doing? Watching you.
Why? I just wanted to see the guy who stuck it to Sheriff Buck.
Did I make you uneasy? No.
Nothing makes me uneasy.
Except maybe seeing someone sitting on her ass in the middle of an emergency.
Well, I'm flattered you even noticed my ass in the middle of this big emergency.
So you came.
But it's not about anything else.
No heart, no soul.
That's the way you want it? That's the way I want it.
Where's the doctor, the one from Atlanta? With a patient.
Get him.
She just started bleeding.
What were you doing at the time? Never mind.
What's your relationship to Miss Emory? Buck.
That's none of your business.
We always gonna do this? Do what? Jerk around like this.
You just make damn sure she gets better.
Or you'll what? I'll think of something.
Well, don't give yourself a brain hemorrhage.
And while you're at it, think about this.
You need me, don't you? All right, I need you to fix her up.
Just get on with it.
I will.
But then Then what? Well, then you'll owe me.
I'm sorry, do I know you? No.
Not yet.
I like that "not yet" part.
Selena Coombs.
You're the epidemiologist from Atlanta.
Saint Charles, Louisiana, actually.
Just got a one-room studio in Atlanta with one box of stuff in it.
I still haven't unpacked since my last assignment.
And where was that? East Africa.
Cholera epidemic.
Well, this town must seem pretty tame after Africa.
Not so far.
It's hard for outsiders here.
You must feel like a fish out of water.
Yeah, I feel kind of a like the only normal guy in the nut house.
You know, present company excluded, of course.
Well, don't jump to conclusions.
Anyway, I got a message for you.
So this wasn't just a chance meeting? I'm taking a chance, all right.
Look out for Sheriff Buck.
Come on No, really.
Have you ever looked into the face of evil? I mean the pure, unadulterated thing.
I would probably be too busy to even notice it.
You will.
See you around.
If you want to, you can go in.
It's okay.
He's not contagious.
How you doing, Dr.
Matt? I'm dwelling in the house, Caleb.
Everything's going to be all right, Dr.
Everything's going to be all right.
So what do you want? You're the link.
I can feel it.
I thought scientists went on facts, not feelings.
Chasing viruses, it's a whole new field.
We rely on our guts as well as data.
Maybe you're an unwitting host.
Maybe there's a symbiotic relationship between you and the infected that you're not aware of.
Or maybe some monkey's running around Trinity doing his thing with bored housewives.
How come every time you whisper in someone's ear, blood pours out? I mean, you give that fisheye of yours to some poor bastard and he's down for the count.
And how come with all that kind of contact you ain't sick? Right living.
You been in Africa too long, friend.
You sound like a witch doctor.
Roll up your sleeve.
Not this again.
No, this time it's not a game.
Roll up your sleeve.
I need a sample.
I give you my blood you'll be giving me yours, Peele.
Kind of funny how these days the thing we fear the most is our very lifeblood.
Yeah, hysterical.
So what do you do with this? We send it down to Atlanta and we wait.
And you think it'll show what, that I'm the Plague Sower? Typhoid Mary? I'll let you know.
All right, people, now the Sheriff is not here, and I'm not authorized to make any statements about anything.
Come on, Ben, just give us the death toll.
That's so morbid.
What is it? Five? Eight? Have they closed the elementary school yet? No, we haven't.
Look, we don't want people to get all panicky just because Just because the Trinity River has turned red? What is that about? What that's about, friend, is an unfortunate red dye spill at a paper mill upriver in North Carolina, just south of Wilmington.
Now, I've been in contact with the public authorities up there and they've assured me that the malfunction has been corrected.
All right? Anything else? Have you also been in contact with the investigator from the CDC, Sheriff? Yes, ma'am, I have.
He's helping me with my investigation and I have offered him my full cooperation as well.
Ben, you want to bring the car around for me? Now what? Now we wait.
No, you go on.
I'll wait.
For what? I mean, there's nothing out here on a night like this except Except for what, Ben? Spirits? Well, all right.
Lord protect us all on a night like this.
All right, here I am.
Merlyn Temple, you listening to me? I'm sorry.
It's a trying time for me, my people are afraid and I haven't been able to help them.
So I thought No.
Never mind.
Thought what? Thought you could help me out.
I mean all this blood, no offense, Merly, but that's kind of heavy-handed I know it's your job to keep people on the straight and narrow.
I've been there and it's easy to get carried away.
You lose sight of your goals.
Protect the good.
Punish the wicked.
Or is the whole thing one big ego trip? You start to lose yourself.
You start to fall.
You are the one who has fallen, not me.
You need me.
I can show you all the pitfalls to avoid.
I know what I'm doing.
Lord I don't mean to bug you or nothing but things are really getting out of hand.
If you could make my cousin Gail all better and help poor old Dr.
Lord, they didn't do nothing.
That's not exactly true, Caleb.
Says who? Says me.
I saw Dr.
Matt lying to the people, telling them that nothing had happened.
He's just calming them down.
That's his job.
Well, they won't get crazy and turn on each other.
Well, he should've told the truth.
Lucas' job is to lie, to deceive.
Well, he's got Matt now.
He owns him.
Cut it out, Merly.
He's just an old guy.
You're doing this, ain't you? You made him sick.
And Gail? Gail made herself sick.
She laid down with Lucas.
Stop it, Merly.
What's happened to you? Well, I was told to punish the wicked and warn those that would sin.
Who told you this? You're listening to them voices, too, like Dr.
Matt? Then maybe you're crazy.
You just leave him alone.
Leave us all alone.
But they've sinned, Caleb.
Not like you have, Merly.
Not by a long shot.
And what about me? I spent time with Lucas.
You going to make me sick and crazy, too? Of course not, I love you.
Then love them, too, Merly.
All of them.
All of us down here, we need it.
Leaving without saying goodbye, Billy? Nope, not leaving.
I'm sticking around.
What for? To collect.
You still owe me.
Looks like the deal's been consummated, already.
Not our deal.
We ain't even started yet.
No, we haven't.
How you feeling? I feel fine.
You? I'm okay.