Severance Pay (episode)/Transcript


(Mason reading Russian off a videotape and translating to himself.)

Larry: Comrade Gaddafi claimed the secret helicopter was destroyed by his air defenses while attempting to escape to an American carrier in the Mediterranean. Although our trailing submarines determined that no rendezvous with the carrier occurred, we cannot definitely conclude the helicopter was destroyed, since comrade Gaddafi produced no physical evidence despite our request. January 30, 1984.

(background singing of For He's a Jolly Good Fellow)

(background voices. Hey Larry, congratulations, pal. Did you know about this?)

Klein: Thank's guys.

Klein: Larry, the gang wants to say goodbye.

Larry: Joe, the Russians know too soon. Too quick. They know what Airwolf does as soon as it does it. They may even know about Hawke.

Klein: Larry, we're retiring. Today.

Larry: They paid till 5.30. They get till 5.30.

(background voice: How's you heart, Mr. Klein?)

Larry: Blood pressure pills? Cheap champagne?

Klein: Not so cheap. They like us. Come on, join the party.

Larry: All right. Just let me finish this up.

(Larry continues to read Russian off a videotape and translate.)

Larry: Although its mission was to sterilize the island, the helicopter used weapons systems known to exist on the secret machine comrade Gaddafi reported destroyed. The machine appears however to be in the possession of a civilian or non-military organisation. September 9, 84.

Larry: Holy son of a gun.

Lobby of Knightsbridge

Larry: Mr. Barnes.

Barnes: Mason. Thought you all had retired.

Larry: Not yet. Tonight's my last night.

Barnes: Well, good luck. You deserve it.

Larry: Umm, do you have a minute.

Barnes: It is important?

Larry: Well, it's that Airwolf business.

Barnes: Ah. I thought you'd finished with that.

Larry: No. It's all there, Mr. Barnes. I know I didn't give you enough the last time, but now we have the proof. Look at these reports. See the dates?

Barnes: Well, I'll be. There'll be a commendation in your file for this.

Larry: I'm retiring, remember.

Barnes: That's our loss. We could use more like you, Larry, I mean that.

Larry: Thank you, sir.

Barnes: Good night.

Larry: Good night.

Santini Air

Hawke: Er, Dom, where's the percolator?

Dominic: The what?

Hawke: Thing that looks like a coffee pot, you know.

Dominic: Oh, on the desk.... Only be careful when you pick....

Dominic: I fixed up the infra-red scanner on Airwolf.

Hawke: You fixed a 4 million dollar top secret advanced army sensitive scanning device with parts from a percolator, huh?

Dominic: All I needed was a little hook.

Hawke: You told me it was going to cost the FIRM 4 thousand dollars.

Dominic: Hey, that's where those big guys go broke.

Larry: He's absolutely right, you know.

Hawke: Larry! How you been? Larry Mason, remember he used to work for the FIRM.

Dominic: Oh, you're the guy who gets those little pieces of this and that from all around the world and then puts them all together and comes up with that important stuff.

Larry: Past tense as off last night. I'm a Gulf front property owner in Mexico.

Dominic: Ta da!

Larry: Actually it's only a coffee counter and a couple of row boats but it's all ours, Joe's and mine. Hey we're having dinner at the pub tonight. Joe and his wife. May be you could come a long. Both of you.

Larry: Huh? They're great people. I'll show you pictures of the place.

Larry: Hey, er. Hawke. You have a minute?

Dominic: Oh, I can leave....

Hawke: Er listen, if it's about business, Dom can hear.

Larry: Have er, have you ever had this place swept? For bugs I mean?

Dominic: What's so secret about the fact that I'm in hock? (laughs)

(Larry turns on radio. Music.)

Larry: Guys, the Russians know Airwolf wasn't destroyed. Question. How do they know?

Dominic: May be the same way that you pick up stuff.

Larry: No, no, no, no, no. I er, I intercept messages. From embassies, from agents, theirs, not ours. I pick up thread, I pick up hints. It takes me months, sometimes years. They do it in days. Sometimes hours. They know exactly what you've done with Airwolf. They try to cover it. They make it look like it's gathered intelligence. But the time of discovery is too close to the event.

Hawke: Moles, huh?

Dominic: Oh, brother. Then he has to be in the FIRM.

Larry: Not just in, near the top. May be even on the Committee. The British had one. The French did.

Hawke: You told this to the Committee?

Larry: Too risky. I told security. You guys better watch yourselves. I mean I don't want them getting either you or that ship. Hey, I got to hustle.

Hawke: Hey, Larry just a sec....

Larry: I'm late for a meeting at Records and Grievances. Listen, I'll talk to you at dinner tonight. Seven o'clock, the pub, okay?

Hawke: Okay.

Bureau of Records of the FIRM

Klein: Just cut that damned check.

Clerk: It's not that simple.

Klein: Don't you understand. If we don't bring the checks to their lawyers by 5.30 today, we blow the deal.

Clerk: Apparently the computer is still rejecting your request.

Klein: I'm telling you, we've been planning this for years.

Larry: Joe, come on, we'll get it done. Right?

Klein: I can't take this. The humiliation. After all this time, we're begging. Hoo! I can't take this. My pills.

Larry: Can't you do something?

Clerk: The problem is, temporary employees are not due retirement bonuses.

Klein: We're not temporary. You call twenty years temporary?

Clerk: The computer....

Klein: Is wrong!

Larry: Joe, sit down. You don't look well.

Klein: That's it. That's it. No more excuses. I want my retirement bonus check now. In black and white here this minute. Not tomorrow, not next week, no stalls, no delays, no more! Do it!. Urgh....

Larry: Call a doctor. Call a doctor!

(thud as Klein falls to the ground)

Larry: Joe, Joe, Joey, Joey!

Clerk: (on the phone) This is an emergency. Send the paramedics.

Larry: Come on Joe. Joey. Come on Joe. Come on Joey.

Clerk: He's dead.

Larry: He's Klein and I'm Mason. Don't you even know who we are!

Larry: I can't do it all alone. I can't run it alone. Joe, come on.

Night time at the Bureau of Records

(Larry comes in, sets up a bomb and then leaves.)

(At a call box outside. Punching buttons.)

Larry: Wait till you see this one, Joe.

(Inside Bureau of Records, a phone rings.)


(Sirens. Truck starts and drives off.)

Archangel's office

Hawke: I don't believe it. Larry Mason sings the Star Spangled Banner every morning before breakfast.

Marella: Hawke, he phoned two hours ago. He said he was responsible for last night's explosion. He wanted to talk to Archangel. I stalled. I said he wasn't here. He said he'd call back at noon and he wanted you present.

Hawke: He wouldn't do anything crazy like that unless he had a reason.

Marella: He's got a reason. At least he thinks he does. His partner died of a heart attack while trying to make a retirement claim at that office.

Hawke: Great.

(knocking. Barnes enters with Henderson.)

Barnes: What's he doing here?

Archangel: Larry Mason wants him here.

Barnes: What's your tie in with Mason, Hawke?

(phone rings)

Hawke: We're friends.

Marella: His profile said he was prompt.

Archangel: Mason....

(Larry from a call box)

Larry: This is Larry Mason.

Archangel: Mason, I'm going to put you on a speaker.

Larry: I don't care what you do, just listen. Is Hawke there?

Hawke: Yeah Larry, this is Hawke.

Larry: I hate to drag you into this, kid. But I think you'll convince them I'm serious.

Hawke: I'll sure do my best.

Larry: Okay, take this down. To the FIRM. The matter of the status of agents Klein and Mason is brought to your attention for the two hundred and fifty second and last time since 1958. So cut and process the retirement bonus checks and forthwith.

(Marella starts scan. Computer beeps.)

Hawke: Larry, I gotta tell you they're trying to trace your call.

Larry: Don't sweat it. I got it covered.

Larry: As I was saying, if these grievances are not resolved, and the check is not sent to Mrs. Klein in the next 48 hours, I will make certain classified data available to the press everyday until you comply.

Marella: Larry, this is Marella. How did you get your hands on our new tracking scrambler?

Larry: I didn't. I found these plans in an old file that was rejected by Development a few years ago. It cost me ten dollars to make. What did you pay?

Barnes: Mason, Arthur Barnes. I promise you that I will personally look into yours and Klein's grievances. Just come in. We can talk.

Larry: I can but he can't. Pay what you owe! (hangs up)

Hawke: Pay the man his money.

Barnes: It's not that simple.

Hawke: Why?

Archangel: Take it easy, Hawke. Mason and Klein signed on as temporary personnel to OSI but they didn't change their status when the FIRM absorbed OSI.

Barnes: Personnel can't just reclassify them. That would set a precedent that could open the FIRM to thousands of claims.

Marella: To compound the problem. Temps don't get a pension. They also don't get a medical. Which means they owe the FIRM for health services they obtained. It was deducted from their last checks.

Hawke: I don't believe this.

Barnes: Hawke, obviously he has a grievance and we can rectify it in time, although his reaction was a little strong to say the least.

Hawke: The man's friend died. Trying to get back what he earned.

Barnes: I sympathise. But in addition to his act of terrorism last night, I just heard him threaten to release classified information. We can't allow that.

Hawke: Pay him the money.

Archangel: We will. But Barnes is right it will take a little time.

Hawke: Then give me a little time. I'll bring him in.

Barnes: That is not our prerogative.

Hawke: Then you take it to the Committee.

(Door. Hawke leaves)


Archangel: I would like time to allow Hawke to bring Mason in.

Barnes: I agree with that recommendation except that the Committee should recognise that once Stringfellow Hawke is involved, it could provoke interest from other quarters, especially if he uses Airwolf.

Archangel: I don't see any necessity for that. Do you, Hawke?

Hawke: No.

Zeus: We can't the other side becoming interested in this.

Hawke: I understand that, sir.

Zeus: Very well. We'll give you forty eight hours. After that....

Hawke: Thank you, sir.

In a van next to a manhole

(Larry connects wires. Keyboard taps. Computer beeps.)

In a park

Hawke: You know Larry, you can't just go around blowing up government buildings, no matter how justified you feel.

Larry: I did that in the heat of the moment. I won't do it again. I don't have to. I know where all the bodies are buried. Literally. I can make it very embarassing for the FIRM.

Hawke: Well, that's another thing you can't do, Larry, give away FIRM secrets.

Larry: Aw, nothing important, just embarassing stuff. I pulled what I need out of the FIRM computer last night.

Hawke: How the hell did you do that?

Larry: Do I ask you how you fly a helicopter?

Larry: Hey Hawke, I'm flat broke. That retirement bonus is all I have. It's all Joe's wife has. And if I have to embarrass a few people to get it, so be it.

Hawke: Okay. Before you do anything, will you talk with Archangel? One on one? He'll fix it, I promise. He's waiting on us right now.

Larry: Okay.

Larry's truck

Hawke: It's got pretty good pick up for an old van like this.

Larry: It's my one luxury. It has a custom double overhead cam engine. I found the plans in a Swedish hot rod magazine a couple of years ago. You know Hawke, they ought to fire all those high-tech engineers. And let the kids design the secret weapons.

(car pulls up alongside)

Hawke: What's wrong.

Larry: That's Henderson back there, Barnes's aide.

Hawke: Barnes's aide?

Larry: Oh sure, you're surprised.

Hawke: Hey Larry, I swear. The Committee gave me 48 hours.

(wheels screeching)

Hawke: You're going in circles.

Larry: So are they.

Hawke: What are you doing?

Larry: It's called preparation.

Larry: The police shift should be changing about right.... now!

(van backs up)

Hawke: How d'you learn that one.

Larry: A spy novel.

Larry: Get out!

Hawke: Larry, I swear I didn't set you up.

Larry: I don't know what you did. But I have to think, so get out.

Carling Morgan's office

(voice on TV. The temperature is 74. We have clear skies, perfect day for baseball....)

Carling: Get me the night editor. George! We just got our Emmy story!

Archangel's office

Archangel: You were to stay out of it.

Barnes: Henderson was acting on his own. And I won't know why until I find him. Larry Mason was putting together Airwolf reports from the other side. That can only lead to one conclusion. There is a double agent in the FIRM.

Archangel: Why didn't you report that to the Committee?

Barnes: Because the mole could be on the Committee.

Hawke: And you think it's Henderson.

Barnes: I didn't say that.

Hawke: No, but that is what you are thinking.

Marella: I think you better take a look at this.

Carling: (broadcasting on TV) This alleged particular group of Latin freedom fighters in the Miami area were supplied with the latest in hand weapons, explosives and bullet proof vests. And they proceeded to use the equipment against banks in the southeast. Until they were finally stopped by a special team acting outside the FIRM. Stay tuned. My informant promises more and better bulletins.

Hawke: Well he did say he knew where the bodies were.

Marella: The Committee's not going to like this.

Hawke: Oh, come on, there's nothing.

Archangel: Tell that to the Senate when we go up for appropriations.

Barnes: I have to find him.

Hawke: Well I still got 36 hours to bring him in.

Marella: 37 to be exact.

Barnes: No, this is getting out of hand. I have a responsibility and so do you , Michael. We can't let this continue without taking action.

Hawke: What kind of action?

Barnes: That's up to the Committee to decide. Michael?

Archangel: He's right Hawke, it is getting out of hand. Whatever his grievance, he's gone too far.

Marella: If it'll make you feel better, hit it.


Marella: Better?

Hawke: Yeah, a lot better. I broke my knuckle.

Marella: Look, the only thing you can do is wait for Larry to contact you again.

Hawke: You know, he thinks I set him up.

Marella: He knows better. Just give him a little time to realize it. He'll call and you'll bring him in.

Hawke: Will you tell me what action the Committe takes?

Marella: Hawke, I could lose my job.

Hawke: Um hm.

Marella: Well, if it would keep you from busting any more knuckles.

Hawke: Thanks, Marella. I'll be at the hangar.

Santini Air

(night. Hawke lights an arc welding torch. Welding sounds.)

(someone outside puts a fuel nozzle on the ground. Fuel is pumped out and spills onto the floor.)

Dominic: I see what you mean. And it couldn't have started by itself.

Hawke: Sorry Dom, you could have lost everything.

Dominic: Uh huh, including you.

(phone rings)

Hawke: That must be Larry.

Hawke: Larry?

Marella: (on the phone) oh Hawke, he's gone too far.

Hawke: Marella?

Marella: Turn on channel 3. It's all over the news.

Hawke: I don't know what you are talking about.

Marella: Larry Mason. He released a story that got some of our people killed.

(click. TV turns on. Carling's voice)

Carling (on TV) ...has confirmed the official police findings but refuses to comment on allegations regarding the victims being supposed US spies. The bodies have been identified as being that of the Romanian embassy chauffeur Anton Romachek and Irinin Nevalsky. Evidently the story as presented to us yesterday by an unknown source in the United States was designed to expose these agents. Something this reporter could not have known at the time. It looks as though someone deep inside the international intelligence community has a great big axe to grind. Sources in New York confirm the communist leader....

(phone rings)

Hawke: Santini Air....

Larry: (on phone) Hawke, I didn't put the finger on those agents. I couldn't.

Hawke: Oh Larry I believe you. But don't you see that by staying out you are playing more into the hands of whoever's doing it?

Larry: Hawke, I'm scared.

Hawke: Then come in.

Larry: That's easy to say.

Hawke: Larry....

Larry: Look, I trust you Hawke, but I need some assurances from the Committee.

Hawke: Give me a couple of hours. Till then.

Larry: Okay, you can reach me at....

Hawke: Don't say it. Think of a place we know about. You can contact me at a place we know is not bugged.

Larry: Um, how about that place we were going to have dinner at the other night.

Hawke: Okay.

FIRM headquarters

Zeus: Gentlemen you all have read security's report on Larry Mason, the former reader. Recent disclosures indicate that we should declare him a Mad Dog.

Archangel: All you can actually accuse him of so far is bad judgment.

Zeus: Isn't he responsible for that disaster in Europe?

Marella: That hasn't been proven yet, sir.

Barnes: Gentlemen, this is becoming worrisome for all of us. How many more dead before we take action to stop him.

Zeus: All in favor of terminating Lawrence Mason....

Archangel: We must not terminate this man until we question him.

Zeus: Signify in the usual manner.

Zeus: Against?

Carling Morgan's office

Hawke: Excuse me, I'm Stringfellow Hawke. I want to ask some questions about Larry Mason.

Carling: I told you no on the phone.

Hawke: Miss Morgan. American agents are dying because of your broadcast.

Carling: You hold it, don't you lay that kind of pressure on me. I had no idea when I broadcast those items that people would die. I'm sorry that they did but what I have and where I get it is privileged information.

Hawke: Mason swears he didn't tip you that last bulletin. All I need is a way of proving he's telling the truth.

Carling: I don't know what I can do to help you.

Hawke: Could you give me the transcripts that he sent you over the computer?

Carling: Why not. They're no longer privileged.

Hawke: Thank you.

Carling: It's good? Do I get the story?

Hawke: Why not.

At a pub

(background voices in pub)

Hawke: That bad?

Archangel: It's even worse than we first thought. At least a dozen of our top people have been eliminatated.

Marella: I knew some of them. Nick, the chauffeur at the embassy. He used to put on all those funny hats. We called him Niko the clown. And Irene, his control, she was expecting a baby. We were bringing her home this spring.

Hawke: It's not Larry's fault.

Archangel: It's over Hawke, he's been declared a Mad Dog.

Hawke: You can't do that. He was hurt, he reacted. But he did not send in the story responsible for sending in those agents.

Hawke: Who invited him?

Archangel: I did.

Hawke: I trusted you. And I trust Marella. But no one else is to be involved until Larry comes in.

Barnes: It isn't Michael's fault Hawke, but he tied his hands.

Marella: Hawke, Larry's time is running out. This is the only way we could go about it.

Archangel: What's that?

Hawke: These are Carling Morgan's bulletins from Larry Mason.

Archangel: We've already questioned her. She couldn't tell us anything.

Hawke: That's the information she got from Larry. This is the one that got your agents killed. He didn't send that. Somebody else did.

Barnes: How do you know that?

Hawke: Well look at it closely. We all thought Larry was a reader, but he was also a writer. He wrote a report on everything he read. Now writers develop a style. The words are the same but the way they put them together is entirely different. The same way that a musician doesn't play the same song the same way as another. Mr. Barnes, you are the one Larry reported to. You read all his reports. Look at the last page. See there's a very large difference.

Marella: He's right. The styles are very different.

Barnes: I was of the opinion that Larry Mason was at the very least a fool. Appears he may have been an innocent dupe as well.

Waitress: mr Hawke?

Hawke: (picking up phone) Hello?

Larry: (on phone) Hawke, it's Larry.

Hawke: Larry. Archangel is here to speak with you.

Archangel: Mason, we want to bring you in safely. Where are you?

Larry: I'm in Mexico. Tampico.

Archangel: Mexico, Tampico.

Marella: There's an old airstrip 10 miles north of there, ah, Los Hermanos.

Archangel: There's an old airstrip at Los Hermanos. Can you get to it?

Larry: I'll find it.

Archangel: Are you sure?

Larry: I read about it once.

Hawke: I'll pick him up.

Barnes: It would look better to the Committee if he turned himself in to Archangel.

Marella: Don't worry, Hawke, we'll bring him home. Excuse me.

Hawke: Mr. Barnes, can I buy you a drink?

Barnes: I thought you didn't like me.

Hawke: I don't. But anybody big enough to admit they're wrong, why not.

Barnes: I'll have a scotch. Where's the john?

(Barnes punches phone buttons)

(voice on phone) Hello.

Barnes: It's Barnes. Archangel is picking Mason up at a small airstrip at Los Hermanos Mexico just north of Tampico. I would estimate 6 hours. Do we have a capability there?

(voice) We may have a pilot whose services are for hire.

Barnes: Is he any good?

(voice) By all accounts, yes.

Barnes: For all our sakes, he better be.

Santini Air

Dominic: Hey come on. Relax a little, will ya? Larry is on his way home and in good hands too.

Hawke: Dom, there's still something wrong. I don't know what it is but I've got a gut feeling.

Dominic: Oh you proved your point with those news reports, take a little credit, man. Take a little credit.

(phone rings)

Carling: Hello.

Hawke: Hello, Miss Morgan. I was wondering, this is Stringfellow Hawke....

Carling: Yes, Mr. Hawke.

Hawke: You might have something that you haven't told me.

Carling: No. Only those. Did it help?

Hawke: Well it helped very much, I'm very grateful. I'm just wondering if there were any further reports or....

Carling: Well I gave you everything I have.

Hawke: Okay, thank you, I'm sorry I bothered you.

Carling: Oh, Hawke, wait a minute. There was one thing. We changed a word.

Hawke: What was that?

Carling: On the broadcast we said the radio was hidden behind the wardrobe. The original said chifforobe but nobody knew what that meant.

Hawke: Chifforobe? I don't know what that is either.

Carling: Well, it's a southern word that means wardrobe.

Hawke: Thank you.

(hangs up)

Hawke: Hey, Dom.

In a Learjet out of Los Hermanos

Larry: I'm er sorry about what happended.

Marella: We know that.

Larry: I didn't release that story that got those people killed. I might have a grievance but I'm not a traitor.

Marella: We know that too.

Larry: Who do you think released it?

Archangel: That we don't know. But we'll find out.

Larry: Was it Henderson?

Archangel: There'd be no reason for him to do it. Once he exposed himself by going after you, he'd have no need to release information through the press.

Larry: Well if it wasn't Henderson, you have another mole in the FIRM.

On board Airwolf

Hawke: Anything?

Dominic: Nah, too far to reach them on the radio.

Hawke: What about long range radar.

Dominic: I got a DC-9 heading for Mexico City, couple of private jobs on the coast but no Lear.

Hawke: No jets out of Nicaragua?

Dominic: Not yet.

Hawke: Figured that's how Barnes will have to bring him down.

Dominic: May be he's going to wait until he lands at Langley and try to knock him off there.

Hawke: Nah, no way. He's got to do it over Mexico or the Gulf.

Dominic: Hey hey. I got them. There's a Lear climbing over Metzizo.

Hawke: Any MIGs?

Dominic: Nope. Just that DC-9. Hey wait a minute. I got something else. That's not a MIG, it's not even a jet.

In the Learjet

Marella: Hang on.

Archangel: What the hell....

Marella: We had to bank so hard to avoid that fool we got a compressor stall.

Larry: Are we going to crash?

Marella: Not if I can help it.

(Mustang dives after Lear)

(Lear engine relights)

(flame out again)

Larry: An unmarked plane. 50 mm cannons in the wing, 2.75 rockets in the belly.

Archangel: Well, that's encouraging.

Larry: Well, it's a P-51. We can outrun it.

Marella: Not with one engine.

Larry: I wonder why he hasn't shot us down already.

Marella: Oh you're just one bundle of optimism.

Archangel: He's trying to make it look like an accident.

(Lear engine relights)

Archangel: You're pulling away from him now.

Larry: Now, he'll shoot us down.

(P-51 fires a rocket)

(Airwolf intervenes. Music. Launches a missile. Explosion.)

(P-51 fires guns at Airwolf, launches rockets. Explosions.)


(Airwolf fires guns)

(Airwolf fires missile. P-51 fires rockets. Explosion.)

FIRM headquarters

Barnes: Are we absolutely sure there's no hope?

Zeus: They're hours overdue. Air rescue found some wreckage along their route over the Gulf.

Barnes: I feel responsible.

Zeus: Nonsense. You found Henderson. Terminated him.

Barnes: But too late to save Archangel, Marella, Mason.... You can have my resignation.

Zeus: Perhaps after you explain why a mercenary pilot in the employ of the Soviet mission to Mexico tried to shoot Archangel down.

Barnes: Who said that?

(doors open)

Hawke: The pilot, after he baled out and we picked him up.

Barnes: Well, gentlemen, what can I say? It's been a long run for someone in my position. I shall patiently await the next prisoner exchange.

Archangel: We don't exchange what we terminate.

At a small airport

Larry: I can't believe I'm going to ride in her.

Hawke: Straight back to Mexico.

Archangel: The Committe made an exception.

Dominic: The Committe? Hah! We didn't give them any choice.

Larry: What about Joe's wife.

Marella: It's done. She gets his benefits and you get yours. The Committee also hinted they'd like you back as a senior adviser in the Reader's section.

Larry: It's very nice of the Committee. But er may be I'll just go ahead with the marina. Joe might be disappointed if I didn't.

Archangel: You're turning us down?

Larry: No, no, no. I didn't say that. More like er, I'll let you know.

Larry: Mach 2, Dom? 82 thousand feet?

Archangel: The fellow has gall.

Hawke: And don't you forget it. Or I'll have to tell the press about a little story that he told on you to me.

Archangel: Me? What story?

(Airwolf engines start)

Archangel: What's he talking about?

Marella: I wouldn't know, sir.

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