A F.I.R.M. convoy somewhere
STERN: Any minute, now.
MAN: (UNIDENTIFIED) All set.
VOICE: [ON WALKIE TALKIE] The cargo's on schedule.
STERN: Ready? All right, hit it.
STERN: Come on, get that lock off. We ain't got all night.
STERN: Let's move it, guys.
SLADE: Karl, what's going on here? Now, this wasn't part of the plan. Hey, level with me, buddy.
STERN: Don't concern yourseIf.
SLADE: Hey, I thought we were partners, Karl.
STERN: Partners? Dennis, you're hired help. $100,000 for a few minutes work. No questions.
SLADE: Yeah, but you forgot to mention the size of this escort. This deal is a whole lot bigger that you led on. I think we just may have to renegotiate.
STERN: Don't get greedy, Slade. You take your $ 100,000 and spend it in good health. Now, move it.
At a test range
[LASER FIRES. HOUSE EXPLODES.]
[LASER FIRES AGAIN. BRIDGE EXPLODES. MORE EXPLOSIONS.]
STERN: All right, pack it up. Well, Leo, what do you think?
LEO: I think, how much?
STERN: Gee, Leo, a big-time arms broker like you ought to know what something like this is worth. But, since I'm not a greedy man, let's say $10 million.
LEO: I usually get 10% to arrange the transaction.
STERN: They'll have to pay your share.
LEO: You know, Karl, when a weapon like this is stolen, the border slam shuts in a hurry. You'll be expected to deliver to an Eastern Bloc country if you want your money.
STERN: I'm aware of that. Don't worry. I'll get it out of the country.
LEO: If you can, there's a good chance I can make a deal. I'll be in touch.
STERN: Drive carefully, Leo.
SLADE: Karl, we gotta talk. That is really advanced...
STERN: Eavesdropping can be a very dangerous hobby, Slade.
SLADE: $10 million and you're offering me a measly $100,000? I'm not gonna let that happen.
STERN: So, what are you gonna do? Go to the cops?
SLADE: What, and take the rap for murdering those two guards? No way.
STERN: I'm gonna give you a bit of free advice, Slade. You're playing in the big leagues now. You start going around making idle threats, somebody's gonna hand you your head. Got it?
KIKI: Look, enough already. All you need is this and a pair or swimming trunks. Sometimes less.
HAWKE: Sounds like my kind of place.
KIKI: What's the matter?
HAWKE: Uh, nothing really. Let's get going. Now.
HAWKE: No. No, Michael, no.
HAWKE: They answer is absolutely, "No, not!"
ARCHANGEL: Hawke, I'm glad I caught you.
HAWKE: You didn't catch me, Michael.
HAWKE: I've got five days off, and I'm on my way to north shore of Oahu.
ARCHANGEL: Oahu, huh? Whatever gave you that idea? I'm Michael Coldsmith-Briggs.
KIKI: Kiki Tanabe.
ARCHANGEL: Kiki, Hawke and I need to talk.
HAWKE: No, we don't.
ARCHANGEL: Could you excuse us for just a couple of minutes, please?
HAWKE: Uh, Kiki, would you mind waiting on the front porch just for a minute?
KIKI: Okay, but, remember, I have to meet the rest of the flight crew in 45 minutes.
HAWKE: Just a second, honey.
ARCHANGEL: Stewardess, huh? I must start flying commercial more often.
ARCHANGEL: You're aware of the Firm's laser weapons research?
HAWKE: Vaguely. Some ray guns, proton blasters, stuff like that.
ARCHANGEL: Yeah, well, embarrassingly, we're missing one.
HAWKE: What's this "we" stuff, Michael? Don't you mean that you guys are missing one?
ARCHANGEL: Twenty-four hours ago, the Mongoose, an electron beam laser weapon, was stolen by parties unknown while it was in transit to our secret testing site. I needn't tell you all hell is coming down. Starting with the president himseIf.
HAWKE: High priority, huh?
ARCHANGEL: A man called this morning, who was part of the heist. He offered us the name of the individual who has the Mongoose in exchange for one million dollars.
HAWKE: So pay him. A million bucks is pocket change to you guys.
ARCHANGEL: Oh, we intend to. It's the how that's a little bit tricky. That's why I need you. We're supposed to send our bag man to the stunt men's tryouts at Old Silver City.
ARCHANGEL: Yeah. It's a touring Wild West Show. They start tomorrow. You can take Dominic and Caitlin, too, if you think they'll be of any help to you.
ARCHANGEL: You all work around stunt people all the time, you know the lingo. If anyone recognizes you, it'll look 100% legitimate.
HAWKE: I'll tell you something. We do aerial stunts, not cowboy stuff. Doesn't the Firm have some buckaroo on the payroll?
ARCHANGEL: No, we don't.
ARCHANGEL: Come on, I know you can ride a horse. You can fake the rest of it until you make the payroll.
HAWKE: How am I supposed to find this guy, anyway?
ARCHANGEL: He says he'll find you. So? Are we set?
HAWKE: No, no. Michael, I'm sorry.
ANNOUNCER: (COULD BE BARKER) Of course, Silver City has, in the past, been a favorite location of numerous movie and television westerns.
ANNOUNCER: We are pleased again this year to be hosting the stuntmen's auditions...
HAWKE: This looks like the place.
ANNOUNCER: ...for Annie Oakley's Wild West Showw. It's an exciting day, folks. So be ready for action at any time.
VILLAIN: Who's that lowdown varmint who claims she's Annie Oakley?
ANNOUNCER: Looks like wwe might have some trouble, folks. But there's no need to panic. Annie can take care of this sidewwinder.
ANNIE: You calling me out?
VILLAIN: I'm calling you a sneaking coward who don't deserve to be called an Oakley. Annie Oakley was the best shot there ever was! And you're a fake!
ANNIE: Maybe you'd like to try me.
VILLAIN: It's your funeral, lady.
ANNOUNCER: Uh-oh, folks, watch yourselves. They're fixing to tussle.
VILLAIN: I surrender! Please, Annie, I give up!
[MORE PISTOL SHOTS.]
VILLAIN: Okay! I'm just... You're Annie! You're Annie! You're the best, Annie! You win! Help!
ANNOUNCER: There she is, ladies and gentlemen, the greatest pistol shot in the world, the new Annie Oakley, queen of Annie Oakley's Wild West Show.
ANNOUNCER: Thank you for your attention. And let's give a final hand to Annie Oakley!
CAITLIN: Well, looks like Miss Fancy-Pants is running the show here. Think she's connected?
HAWKE: Oh, she's connected, all right. Well-connected. I guess I'll mosey on over and see if I can get us a tryout.
CAITLIN: Mosey? You hear him, Dom? You give a guy a cowboy hat and a pair of boots, and he thinks he's Gary Cooper.
REX: Mom, that was great!
ANNIE: You thought that was pretty good, huh?
REX: Sure, Mom, you're the best.
ANNIE: Oh, thanks, honey. I can count on you.
HAWKE: Excuse me, ma'am.
HAWKE: My friends and I just arrived. We're kind of looking to see if we can get a tryout.
ANNIE: Well, are you experienced stunt people?
HAWKE: Yes, ma'am.
ANNIE: What are your specialties?
HAWKE: Well, Caitlin, there, she can ride just about anything you can find a place to set her on it. Dom, he used to double Yakima Canutt.
REX: Horse pucky!
REX: Mom, everybody knows Yakima Canutt was the greatest stunt man ever, and no one doubled him.
ANNIE: But that doesn't give you any excuse to use language like that.
HAWKE: Fine-looking boy.
Actually, it took us a lot of work to get him to say "pucky." Now, you were telling me about your background.
HAWKE: MyseIf? Well, I can ride it, rope it, fall it down, and if it steps on me, I can cut its throat and eat it raw.
ANNIE: Well, I'm sorry, Mr. Hawke, we don't have any room for you today, but we could give you a tryout tomorrow.
HAWKE: That'd be fine with me.
SLADE: Say, didn't we work on a little feature down in Mexico?
HAWKE: Something called Death of the Mongoose? Maybe, for that Firm Deal Productions?
SLADE: That's right. It's good to see you again. Listen, why don't you fill this thing out and bring it back with you tomorrow.
HAWKE: Thank you, ma'am.
ANNIE: It's my pleasure. I just hope you're haIf as good as your sales pitch.
CAITLIN: How'd you do? I got us a tryout.
DOMINIC: Oh, my aching back. You mean... We're gonna be up haIf the night practicing.
HAWKE: Well, not really. I, uh, found our snitch.
That evening at the barn
SLADE: You here?
[HAY HOOK DROPS ON HIM.]
HAWKE: Find out anything?
DOMINIC: Yeah, the Deputy Sheriff said it looks like an accident. That Slade was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
c/I worked the crowd. Nobody seems to have seen anything. The stuntmen said Slade was neither particularly liked nor disliked.
HAWKE: I know what it looks like, but... I don't know. But it just doesn't seem like an accident to me.
At a rendezvous with Archangel
ARCHANGEL: What happened?
HAWKE: Your man got hit by a four-pronged hay hook. That's what happened.
ARCHANGEL: And you didn't get to talk to him?
ARCHANGEL: Damn it, Hawke! The president himseIf called the old man today. They want the Mongoose back, or in 1000 little pieces, whichever can happen first.
HAWKE: What do you want me to do, Michael? I got sent here to bird-dog some snitch who all of a sudden is not talking at all.
ARCHANGEL: Sorry. Running into stone walls makes me a little cranky.
ARCHANGEL: Besides, I got a feeling the Mongoose is here somewhere.
HAWKE: That could be. But you know, I wouldn't know it if they served it to me for breakfast.
ARCHANGEL: I'll get you a sketch and the specs on the weapon. Lydia here, will deliver it tomorrow. Anything else you need?
HAWKE: What about the woman?
LYDIA: Her real name is Louise Mackey. She's an army brat. Her father taught her how to shoot. He was on the Army's pistol team.
HAWKE: Any financial problems?
ARCHANGEL: Not really. She's not getting rich, but she's making it.
HAWKE: What about personal?
ARCHANGEL: No serious relationship at the moment. One previous marriage that didn't last very long, but resulted in a son, Rex. Lives with her parents while she's on the road.
ARCHANGEL: For the past year, she's been involved in a custody battle with her ex-husband, a man named Stern. We're checking on him right now. Other than that...
HAWKE: So you want us to stay here, nose around and see what we can find out, right?
ARCHANGEL: Yeah. Right now, you're the only chance we've got.
In a workshop
STERN: I can't afford any mistakes, Larson. Are you sure it's the right size?
LARSON: No sweat.
STERN: You do nice work. It'll be ready by tomorrow?.
LARSON: Yes, sir.
STERN: Fine. Then we'll proceed just as planned.
Next morning at Silver City
ANNOUNCER: And here she comes. How about that, folks? Caitlin O'Shaughnessy, doing a pony express!
CAITLIN: How'd I do?
ANNIE: Well, a little too good. I'd better look out, or you'll have my job.
ANNOUNCER: Look out, folks, there's trouble on the saloon roof. The sheriff has finally caught up with the Kid.
ANNOUNCER: Better get your cameras ready, folks.
HAWKE: All right, Kid, you're under arrest.
ANNOUNCER: Watch it, Sheriff!
ANNOUNCER: Oh, what a fight! He's getting awfully close to the edge!
DOMINIC: String? String? String!
DOMINIC: Are you all right?
HAWKE: Dom, remember, it was left, left, right!
DOMINIC: Sorry, String. I blew it.
ANNOUNCER: How about that high and hard fall, folks? You'll never see better.
ANNOUNCER: That was Stringfellow Hawke and Dominic Santini. Take a bow, Dominic. Thank you, thank you! Let's give them a big applause, folks. Folks, we're nearly to the end of today's schedule.
ANNIE: Are you all right?
HAWKE: Yes, ma'am, I'm fine.
ANNIE: I have got to tell you, that was the best fall I've seen in a long time. You looked totally out of control.
HAWKE: Well, that's the way it's supposed to be, isn't it?
ANNIE: Congratulations. Very realistic.
DOMINIC: Thank you, ma'am. You know what they say. Practice makes perfect.
ANNIE: The blood's a nice touch, too. It almost looks real.
HAWKE: Yeah, that's the good stuff. I make it myseIf.
REX: Beauty, Mr. Hawke.
ANNIE: You know, I'd sure like to use you guys, but we don't usually have a high-fall set with the traveling show.
ANNIE: But didn't you list automatic weapons as one of your specialties?
HAWKE: Well, yes, I've had my hands on a few, a time or two.
ANNIE: Do you think you could handle a Gatling gun?
DOMINIC: Handle it? Why, he can lay down a field of fire and make it whistle Dixie while he's doing it.
ANNIE: That's great. I've been working on a routine where I shoot against a Gatling gun. Why don't we give it a try after lunch?
HAWKE: That'd be fine by me.
ANNIE: All right. I'd better get the show back on the road, though. I got to keep 'em hopping. Come on, partner. Congratulations.
DOMINIC: Well, I thought everything worked out real fine, huh? The crowd loved us.
HAWKE: `Yeah, maybe I should have broken my neck for real. We might've been the hit of the show.
DOMINIC: Aw, String.
Outside Silver City
STERN: So do we have a deal? What happened?
LEO: Their eyes lit up like it was Christmas morning. You've got it. $10 million on delivery. They want to know when and where they can take it.
STERN: I plan on having the weapon in East Berlin in about two weeks.
LEO: Excellent. Listen, Karl, they want this weapon at any cost. If you run into trouble, call me at this number. I usually don't get involved, but I'll make an exception in this case. I got connections in Mexico. I can arrange for you to take the weapon across the border, and from there into Cuba. Remember, if anything goes wrong...
STERN: Right. I'll call you.