Laters

5 bike thieves on the run...

What would you do with your last day of freedom?


OUTSIDE BETTING OFFICE

(STEVIE follows his dad out onto the street.)

BILLY
What the world coming to you when you can't smoke in a bookies, eh?  Now!
(lighting up)
What can I do you for, son?

STEVIE
Just needed a word.
(pause)
I dunno.  I was thinking…

BILLY
Dangerous game, that…

STEVIE
(half a smile…)
Yeah, takes some getting used to…  But I was thinking, like… well, wondering really… dad…

BILLY
(scribbling in his paper)
…Stevie boy…

STEVIE
If you had like - one day left - what would you do with it?

BILLY
One day?

STEVIE
Maybe less - see I've been thinking about it - what I'd do.  like, all the things you dream about - fantasies, knowhatImean? and my brain's come up empty.  I'm, like, walking round the streets and, you know it's such a beautiful day, you know, for the time of year, you know and Danny's off doing his own thing and I got all this cash and all time to meself and all I can think of to do is just wander. Until I found myself wondering what me dad would have done.

BILLY
You got yourself in a spot of trouble.

STEVIE
Well, sort of, maybe… yeah dad, I have.

BILLY puts down his paper at STEVIE and beams…

BILLY
Yeaaahhhh, son!  About fucking time, eh?  Ain't it?    I was beginning to wonder if they swapped you in the cradle, lad!  Finally my boy's come through with some genetics!  Does your brother know?

STEVIE
Yeah.

BILLY
Where is your brother?  I thought you two were joined at the head like Siamese.

STEVIE
Dad….

BILLY
Advice!  Simple!  Do What You Want.  Not what you think you should want - not what people say you should want. No need to weigh yourself down with great big fuck-off plans or manufacture no grand gestures, it's your life, waste it your way. The day we lost your mum - I looked at her, withered in her bed, like a crumpled crumbling faded rose and I realized: All the plans you make, all savings you've salted - all the dreams you've shared - they're all useless when you reach your last day.  I should've made love to her more - should have spent on her more - should have danced more, laughed more got pissed together more - we should have lived.  So I fucked it all off from that day on and did exactly what I wanted.  And here I am. If I'd wanted to see the Pyramids, I would have - If I'd wanted to marry that Pamela Anderson, I'd have gone for it.  But what I really wanted was little things - pack of fags - A Staffordshire bull terrier - scotch for breakfast and bacon butties at midnight, so I had 'em.  I wanted to make me living betting money on the gee-gees - so I did.  Eat what you want son, drink what you want, smoke what you want, shag who you want.  Every day is your last.  Advice given.  Sorted.

(Pause.)

STEVIE
Thanks.

BILLY
Got cash, have you?  Sly little bastard.  Fancy putting one on the next race?

STEVIE
Dad…

BILLY
A man ain't a man if he's never had a flutter… Come on, pick a winner.

(He thrusts his newspaper at STEVIE - Without taking it, STEVIE looks…)

STEVIE
…'Gaylord'.

(Beat)

BILLY
Good start...  Decisive.  Bit of an outsider, though…  How about the favourite..? 'Quiet Life?'

STEVIE
'Gaylord'.

BILLY
Fairplay…  fairplay… decisive - choice made.

(Beat)

Either way?

STEVIE
To win.  Here's a fifty.

BILLY
That's my boy. 
(stubbing out smoke)
Coming in?

STEVIE
Catch you up, yeah?

BILLY
In your time, son.

(BILLY wanders back in… STEVIE watches - his phone rings.  He answers.)

STEVIE
Yeah?