Out of Nowhere | Invulnerable pt 1 ch 1

From out of nowhere came a man with a miraculous message


Part I - Safe

Chapter 1 - Out of Nowhere

A small clot of people mill about on a city street. One looks up, points to the sky and shouts.

Man #1: "Look! Up in the sky!"

Woman #1:"It's a bird!"

Man #2: "It's a plane!"

Man #1: "It's…"

We draw back from the scene to see the clot of people is small, standing on a curb in a run-down neighborhood. There's a subway station sticking out of the sidewalk behind them, a bum slumped against the buildings behind that. Trash blows down the street. Vehicles rush by.

Down on the ground…

I'm… working my territory.

One of the clot of people says,

Man #3: "It's a plane..?"

We reverse the angle of observation, as if from the bum's point of view. Now we see the clot from behind, the street beyond them, the subway exit in the middle ground.

Man #2: "It's a plane… painted to look like a bird?"

Woman #1: "Weird."
Man #3: "Duh!"
Man #2: "Who cares?"

A lone figure rises up out of the subway.
My thing…

Asking for spare change…

He pops up out of the subway.
Looks at me.
(Nobody looks at me.)

And he says,

Man: "This is Chicago, right?"

Bum: "um…"

Guy's lost. I'm lost, but at least I know what city I'm in!

Man: "I just, sorta…. picked one at random."


Not lost.


Man: I guess here is as good a place for me to start as any.

Man (whispers): [Inaudible] help me.)

Man: Okay, here goes!

Oh, no!
Is he going to pull a street preacher scam… on my corner?
Flashback to balding, white-bearded street preacher, holding Bible, donation pot set up nearby. About him float symbols, a heart, a cross, a dollar sign. We see the bum, in the background.
Last summer … I think … Preacher took up half a block away.
Moments later: The Preacher holds a hand over his left eye, drops of sweat or blood fall, the symbols around him are now a skewed star, a lightning bolt. The Bible lies on the ground. The bum is standing, staring angrily at the Preacher, holding the donation pot, now bent and damaged, by one leg. The preacher is giving the bum the finger.
I persuaded him to move on.
The stranger is standing right in front of the bum, back to the bum, facing the street, about to spread out his arms. Behind him, on the ground, the bum's arms are wide out.

Bum: Hey!"

Suddenly, the young man turns on the bum, clasping his hands on the bum's shoulders. The man's hood falls back from his head, his hair blowing in the breeze. We see for the first time, close-up, smiling, the face of a rather ordinary-looking young man, Midwestern caucasian perhaps, smiling with tremendous boyish energy at the bum.

The bum's cap falls to the ground.

Man shouts: "YOU'RE SAFE! SAFE!"

Bum: Urk!

(Uh oh!)


Didn't he mean saved?

He said safe.

The young man's face segues into the face of an angry, snarling older man.
My old man
couldn't control his temper.

Worse when he drank
of course
which was always.

We see in flashback his screaming father, pointing at us, shaking with rage, waving a belt above his head as his wife cowers behind him, shielding a little girl.
I was never safe.
We see the bum as a young man, shaking down a little kid.
So I was the same.

A bully as a kid.

We see the bum, older now, screaming at his crying, terrorized wife.
A terror to my wives…
We see the bum, bottle in hand, watching as his wife walks away, suitcase in one hand, in the other, their child dragged behind her.
…my kid…


The bum from behind, dressed in gray with numbers on his back, clutching cell bars.

Couldn't control my temper.

After she and the kid left,
quit trying to.

We see in close-up the stubbled haggard face of the bum, drunk and angry, holding the damaged donation bowl of the preacher.
I just was… Hit first and ask… No…
…don't bother asking questions.
We see his fist, clutching a foot-long piece of steel.
I pull out my lead pipe.

I'm about to teach this preacher a hard lesson…

When… I… don't…. Huh!

Man: How do I say it?

We see again the smiling face of the young man, reduced to just eyes, nose mouth.
When he surprised me…
We see again the scowling face of the bum's father.
I got … scared.
Don't like surprises.
Surprises make me scared.
Now we see the hard, but dull-eyed, aged face of the bum's father.
Scared makes me mad.

Just like Dad.

We see only closed slits of eyes and mouth around a line of nose, the bum's father, gone.
Until he got old real fast and died.
The smiling young man lays a gentle hand on the shoulder of the ragged, tired-looking bum.

Man: How do you feel?


How do I feel?


Not angry.

I… feel!

There's a progression, as the lifelong dull anger seems to vanish from the bum's face, a light comes to his eyes, his brow unfurrows somewhat, and he almost starts to smile.

The young man sees a bent-over, rag-bag street lady approaching them. He points to her and speaks to the bum,

Man: "Tell her how you feel!"

The bum, steel pipe still resting in his hands, looks at her.


No, man!

That's Crazy Amy. You don't talk to Crazy Amy! We think maybe she's Russian or something. Only person on the street possibly even angrier than I am.

than I …was.

The scowling, squinting old lady does not look up at them as she nears them. The bum looks at her, with new and different eyes.

I feel SOBER.


As the young man looks on, arms at his side, a giant smile on his face, the bum drops his weapon. He grabs the bag lady by the shoulders, she looks up at his face, dropping her bags of junk.

Bum: AMY! WE'RE SAFE! It's okay! WE'RE SAFE!

At first, she looked just like she does when she's about to start screaming incomprehensible foreign profanities.

Instead, she… laughs!
We all laugh. Heartily. For a long time.
Then, there we were,
three idiot bums on the street,
Crazy with laughter.

The lead pipe and the groceries lie on the ground forgotten.
Our laughter settles to chuckling, and we stand there in a bizarre quiet peace.
For the first time ever, I hear Amy speak, in plain English.

Amy: Now what?