Cliffton High School


When people meet by the fence behind the gym, it is seldom for licit purposes as evidenced by the broken bottles and used condoms that litter the ground. So it comes as no surprise that Dennis Dubois chose this spot to have a private conversation. Unfortunately, the man who initiated the meeting is late, so Dennis attempts to assuage his annoyance with 30-year-old memories of his student career here. Football practice with classmate Dick Francis with whom he is no longer on speaking terms. Drinking beer with his buds while his brother made out with Charlotte Cliff behind this very gym. Fighting with the racist farm boys...

His reverie is broken by the arrival of Trip Genovesiano.

TRIP
You couldn't find a nicer spot?

DENNIS
You couldn't be on time?

TRIP
I feel like a criminal, meeting like this.

DENNIS
You are a criminal.

TRIP
Hey, hey hey! I'm a legitimate businessman.

DENNIS
So how come you told me this had to be so secret?

TRIP
'Cause the business I'm discussing ain't as legitimate as I am, okay? And if you didn't know that already, you wouldn't have picked this pisshole to meet in, so let's cut the shit and get down to it. I represent certain parties that have an interest in seeing you succeed in your land grab.

DENNIS
It's not a land grab. That land belongs to my people.

TRIP
Yeah, yeah. Whatever. The point is, once you got that land, we're interested in partnering up on a gaming venture.

DENNIS
Why would I want to partner up with you?

TRIP
You know who I am?

DENNIS
Yeah. You're Lucky Genovesiano's kid.

TRIP
So then you already know why.

DENNIS
Because you'll break my legs if I don't?

TRIP
That's an extremely unfair and insensitive statement. I think I deserve a little better than a racial stereotype from a bastard redskin like you. We don't bash kneecaps no more, we get you where it really hurts -- your credit rating. You don't play ball with us, I can guarantee you no computer in the world is going to approve you for so much as a car loan, let alone enough scratch to build a casino. But I digress. I'm not here to make you an offer you can't refuse, I'm here to make you an offer you're going to like.

DENNIS
I doubt it.

TRIP
There's nobody knows the gambling business like us. We been in it 50 years, and we're deeper in it than anybody else, despite what the Nevada Gaming Commission thinks. We can guarantee that your venture is a success, we can put together all the financing you need, and we can save you twice as much in tax-free skim as we're gonna cost you.

DENNIS
And exactly what will you cost me?

TRIP
Fifty percent. Right down the middle.

DENNIS
We don't sell real estate for beads and trinkets anymore.

TRIP
Look. I'm a hairdresser, okay? Not some old-time paisano with a corkscrew for a fist. You don't want to treat me with respect? Fine. I'll just go back to my salon and dye roots. But my father ain't as reasonable as me. He don't get what he wants, he'll send a palooka down here to play "She Loves Me, She Loves Me Not" with your extremities.

DENNIS
You don't scare me.

TRIP
Like I said, I'm just a messenger. You don't hear me? He'll send someone louder. You're going to get the message no matter what. The question is, how many bones is it gonna require?

DENNIS
There's nothing you can do to me that comes anywhere near the torture my people have suffered at the White Man's hands for 400 years.

TRIP
Yeah, I've noticed you suffering all the way to the bank with your little tavern. But let's not lose sight of the main thing here. We can help you make money. Even at 50%, you're going to make more money with us than without us, I guarantee it.
Dennis ponders this for a few moments. Trip is smart enough to keep his mouth shut. Dennis kicks an empty beer can into the fence, then reaches a decision.
DENNIS
Okay. No promises, but I'll meet with your old man to discuss it.

TRIP
I'll set it up.

The two men shake hands, but it is clearly an empty gesture to seal the deal. There is no love lost between these two.