Episode 11: Cold Snap

[SCENE I. MELISSA and SARAH’s house. MELISSA is wrapped in several layers of blankets at the computer; SARAH is trying to build a fire. It is snowing outside. The snow isn’t very heavy, but a strong wind has it falling almost horizontally. Despite the cold, MELISSA looks quite pleased with herself.] MELISSA: Sounds like Seattle’s getting lots of snow.

SARAH: I thought you hated winter and all its grim trappings.

MELISSA: Not when Melina is adversely affected! (Beat.) I could do without the frigid cold up here, though. Make it stop.

SARAH: How am I supposed to do that?

MELISSA: Didn’t you summon a snow demon or something? It’s okay if you did. Just let me know. We can work something out.

SARAH: (Chastising.) That approach didn’t work for Canadian customs and it won’t work for you.

MELISSA: All right. But I’m watching you, Ames.

(A moment’s silence is interrupted by a knock at the door. When SARAH makes no move to answer it, MELISSA reluctantly rises to her feet and approaches the door, retaining a blanket as a cloak. She opens the door to find MELINA standing, poised to knock again. MELISSA gives her sister a sharp glare.)

MELISSA: Aren’t you supposed to be in Seattle?

MELINA: Good to see you too, Lissa. Mind if I stay here for a while?

MELISSA: Would it stop you if I did?

MELINA: No. (MELISSA steps aside, and MELINA brings her bike inside and leans it against the wall, drops a laden messenger bag by the couch, and stands, looking at her sister. Eventually MELISSA grins and gives her a hug.)

MELISSA: I was hoping you were buried in snow! What happened?

MELINA: I may have gotten fired.

MELISSA: Really?

MELINA: It turns out, when you disappear for several days to hunt down an old family nemesis, they don’t like it much.

MELISSA: Huh.

MELINA: So I figured I’d take some time off. Relax for a while.

MELISSA: Couldn’t pay rent, huh?

MELINA: Yeah. (She sits on the couch. SARAH has finished building up the fire and is now watching it intently.)

(MELISSA turns to move her sister’s bike into a more convenient location, then stops as she sees something outside the window.)

MELISSA: Okay, so I was joking about the snow monsters, but there’s something out there.

MELINA: Snow monsters?

SARAH: Oh, I thought you knew about those.

(A long pause.)

MELISSA: Apparently not.

SARAH: Yeah, we’ve got an abominable snowman. Or some sort of hairy white thing. Maybe a couple.

(Another long pause.)

MELISSA: And this is what’s causing it to be cold?

SARAH: Maybe!

MELISSA: Are you making this up?

SARAH: No!

MELISSA: Do you want to go after it?

SARAH: (Rising, putting on her coat.) Well, obviously.

(MELINA looks at both of them.)

MELINA: Well, I’m staying here.

MELISSA: Try not to burn the place down.

 

[SCENE II. The woods outside Portland. MELISSA and SARAH have just gotten out of MELISSA’s car. Both are bundled up in hat, scarf, gloves, et cetera, though SARAH seems a lot happier about it. They are walking deeper into the woods.]

MELISSA: Was this your idea or mine?

SARAH: Yours.

MELISSA: Remind me never to willingly go out in the cold again, then. My face is freezing.

SARAH: My grandma knitted you a balaclava for Christmas. You should wear it.

MELISSA: I’d look psychotic in a balaclava.

SARAH: (Looks hard at MELISSA. Beat.) You are never allowed to call me a hipster again.

MELISSA: (Smirking.) Fine.

(A brief silence. They arrive in a small clearing.)

SARAH: Okay, this is, uh, where I first saw it.

(MELISSA stoops to investigate some footprints in the thin layer of snow.)

MELISSA: Well, something big has been here recently.

SARAH: I wonder what he was doing in town?

MELISSA: Well, you know, there’s lots of things a monster could be– (Something in the distance catches her eye.) —doing. Don’t turn around, Sarah.

(SARAH turns around. We see a large, white, hairy ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN, dragging along a human who is either dead or unconscious. SARAH hurriedly pulls out her camera and takes a photo. After a few moments, the SNOWMAN looks up and sees MELISSA and SARAH standing there, watching it.)

SARAH: I think he sees us.

MELISSA: Yes, very good. Do you want to scream, or shall I?

(The ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN drops its human and rounds on the two.)

SARAH: I was just going to run. You can scream if you want to.

MELISSA: I like running. Running is good.

(The SNOWMAN roars. MELISSA and SARAH turn and run. He pursues.)

SARAH: In here, quick!

(SARAH ducks into the entrance to an abandoned mine. MELISSA quickly follows. They vanish out of sight. The ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN reaches the entrance and examines it thoughtfully, as if expecting a trap. It then seems to sit down and wait.)

 

[SCENE III. An abandoned mine, as illuminated by two flashlights–specifically, those carried by SARAH and MELISSA.]

MELISSA: Did you know this was here?

SARAH: Um . . . .

MELISSA: Come to think of it, why were you out here to look at abominable snowmen in the first place?

SARAH: No reason!

MELISSA: Sarah.

SARAH: All right, I came out here with Kelly Hayes.

MELISSA: (Beat.) That was kind of anticlimactic.

SARAH: Sorry. (Beat.) So, we’re trapped in a mine, about to be eaten by an abominable snowman.

MELISSA: Yeah, that happens sometimes. Will you be mad if we kill it?

SARAH: (Thinks about it.) No.

MELISSA: Good! Then do you have an idea for how to kill it?

SARAH: (Thinks about it.) No. (Beat.) Well, we could build an abominable snowman trap, I suppose.

MELISSA: That’s not a thing.

SARAH: Sure it is! Apparently you learn it in Girl Scouts.

MELISSA: Christ.

(SARAH gets up and walks off and begins gathering parts. A brief montage of SARAH passing by with, for example, a pickaxe, some parts from a mining cart, some sheet metal, bolts, etc., while MELISSA plays with her flashlight in apparent boredom.)

SARAH: It’s done! Now we just need to lure it inside.

MELISSA: Does this involve one of us being eaten or crushed?

SARAH: No. Just follow my lead.

(They head out to the surface, where the ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN is still waiting. It gets up and looks at them, menacing but unwilling to enter the cave.)

SARAH: Hey! Snowman! You’re fat!

(The SNOWMAN looks affronted.)

SARAH: Fat and greasy!

MELISSA: And unloved!

(The SNOWMAN is getting increasingly angry.)

SARAH: And you smell bad!

MELISSA: And you’re a lot dumber than you think you are, but everyone is too nice to say anything!

(The SNOWMAN lets out a furious howl and charges after them. They run back inside and take shelter. As the SNOWMAN approaches, it trips some form of trap, and a giant metal monstrosity falls from the ceiling, crushing it. SARAH and MELISSA come out of hiding.)

MELISSA: And winter is saved! Good thing you knew about abominable snowmen having fragile egos and short tempers, huh?

SARAH: Do they? I just kind of made that part up. And the scrap metal monstrosity isn’t actually a girl scout thing. I also made that up.

MELISSA: I honestly can’t tell if that’s comforting or annoying.

SARAH: I get that a lot.

(They walk out of the mine. Fin.)

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