Indiana Jones and the Dance of Aldebaran, Part 3 (continued)

EXTERIOR.  BY A WATERFALL.  DAY.  Indy, Angela, Alex and Quie are sitting on a large quilt having  a picnic.  Angela runs her hand across some flowers growing nearby.  She bends low to smell them.

                                         QUIE

They are called the Parasol Flower.

                                         ANGELA

They are so lovely, Indy.

                                         QUIE

They seem to thrive here in Shangri La.

                                         INDIANA JONES

As does everything else… or so it would appear.

                                         ANGELA

They look like little Chinamen’s hats.  (she hooks one on her finger and wiggles beneath it)  Ah so!  (she smiles at Indy)

                                         ALEX

Indy, there is something I’ve been meaning to tell you.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Why I am here?

                                         ALEX

You are here as my guest, Indy… as I have told you.  I will admit paradise does have it’s limits.  I missed the banter we had between us, especially concerning you, Angela.  I missed our competition, our discoveries together… perhaps I was a little bored.

                                         INDIANA JONES

You Alex?  Never!

                                         ALEX

Yes, you know me too well, my friend.  Angela, I regret the way I left you back in the States, perhaps I was afraid of making the commitment… but I did intend to return.

                                         ANGELA

I know, Alex.  I was a bit afraid myself… but it is in the past.  Things have way of working themselves out.  (she smiles at Indy)

                                         ALEX

Yes, normally I would say you were right.  But this time I fear something must be done and I didn’t know who else to turn to.  So you see, my invitation was not a purely selfish motive. 

                                         ANGELA

Alex, what are you getting at?

                                         INDIANA JONES

I think I know.  I’m here… we’re here, because of the Dance of Aldebaran.  You knew it would point the way to Shangri La’s entrance and you knew that the Germans were outside looking for that entrance.

                                         ALEX

Yes, Indy… but there’s more to it.  The Valley of the Blue Moon has an ore that resembles an amethyst.  The natives used to mine it and make little trinkets; rings and medallions, jewelry… and use it to trade with the porters for goods and services.  Later it was determined that gold was plentiful and far more in demand so the ore was forgotten.  Now it only serves us as a beacon.

                                         ANGELA

Beacon?

                                         INDIANA JONES

The full moon that accompanies the Dance of Aldebaran reflects the light from the valley and emits it through the crag, showing outsiders the way in.

                                         ALEX

I’m afraid that is only partly right, Indy.  Every full moon reflects some portion of the hue from the valley, each month to a greater or lesser degree, sometimes for longer intervals depending on the season.  But all a person need do is look in the right spot.

                                         ANGELA

How is that possible?

                                         INDIANA JONES

The Earth reflects light, much the way the moon does.

                                         ALEX

Yes, and the light reflected from Shangri La is so intense at times, well…  they don’t call it the Valley of the Blue Moon for nothing.  The Earth is 80% water and bounces light like a crystal.  Shangri La contributes to the phenomenon with each full moon.  For that brief moment we are the peak source for the earthlight reflected back into outer space.

                                         INDIANA JONES

So we didn’t leave the Germans out there waiting for another dance to occur two hundred years from now?

                                         ALEX

The Dance of Aldebaran points the way to the plateau at the foot of The Crest.  From there a person only need wait a maximum of one lunar cycle to witness Shangri La’s aura.

                                         INDIANA JONES

With my charts from the Roof of the World they’ll eventually reach the plateau and there is nothing we can do about them finding this place if the moon is right?

                                         ALEX

I’m afraid not.  Two hundred years ago Father Perrault, our first High Lama, was lost in the mountains and would have died if not for a villager he met near here.  The villager was from the tribe we now refer to as “porters.”  He actually saw the beacon from the crag and brought Father Perrault here.  As Father Perrault’s strength returned, he realized the powers of rejuvenation this place had.  He built the monastery with the help of this one man and of the people from the valley below.  Father Perrault has since died and a new High Lama has taken his place.  But the man that found the valley is still with us.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Chang!

                                         ALEX

Yes, Indy.  He looks 90 but has the fortitude of a man scarcely 40.

                                         ANGELA

But Alex, over two hundred years old?

                                         QUIE

Age is one of the barriers you Europeans place before your minds.

                                         ALEX

Chang was about Shorty’s age when he came here and has shown no signs of slowing down.  Here in Shangri La, the age process as we know it seems to be normal until about age 30.  Then it goes into low gear, to where a man’s appearance could go perceptively unchanged for decades.  It also appears that outsiders regress in age, as you have seen in me.  Bryant is around 60 and appears to be my younger brother.  Vivian was a silent screen star over 20 years ago but looks the same as her last films image.  Conway arrived here in his mid-forties but has polished up like a shiny, new penny.  Sondra has been here since she was a child.

                                         INDIANA JONES

No wonder the Germans are so interested in finding this place.  They want to hole up Hitler and some of his top brass until the war blows over.  He figures he can outlast his enemies here, that they couldn’t pass through the generations and confront him.

                                         ALEX

That is precisely their plan.  Once they reach the plateau it’ll only be  matter of time before the next full moon lights the pathway here.

                                         INDIANA JONES

If they wait on the plateau.  We’ve been here around 3 weeks or so, I doubt they’ll just be camped outside waiting for the next full moon.

                                         ALEX

Why would you doubt that, Indy?

                                         INDIANA JONES

Why would they?  My calculations will lead them to the plateau which will seemingly be a dead end.  They’d have no more reason to camp there and wait then the Man in the Moon…

                                         ANGELA

Unless they knew in advance about the beacon, Indy.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Naw… the only way they could know is if… (he looks at Alex for several seconds and realizes…)  You?  You told them about the aura and the light through the crag?

                                         ANGELA

Oh, Alex… why?

Alex is silent for a moment. He reaches out to touch Quie’s hand, then with the other hand he reaches for Angela’s.

                                         ALEX

Love, Angela… love makes a man do strange things.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Love, Alex?  For whom?  Adolf Hitler?

                                         ALEX

Love for a cause, my friend… for an ideal.  Nazism did not begin to be the monster it is now.  In the beginning my relationship with Stromberg was vested in our mutual belief of a better world through the Third Reich.  Years ago I thought only by man’s hand could paradise be achieved.  Coming here I found how much I had been mistaken.  But I realized it too late.  I’d all ready made contact before the full benefits of Shangri La had claimed me.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Professor Stromberg!  No wonder he was so sure of finding this place!  You sent him that ring he wears!  All he needed was to find the threshold, he all ready had the key.

                                         ALEX

Yes, Indy.  Finding the plateau… that is what has thwarted past attempts.  The Dance of Aldebaran points to the apparent spot where one can “Descend into the Valley of the Blue Moon.”  A dance that occurs once every two hundred years.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Well… you can bet they are out there by now.  The moon will be full in a few days and they’ll be watching for that reflection.

                                         ALEX

That would be my guess.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Have you told the High Lama?

                                         ALEX

He has declared it to me.

                                         ANGELA

He knows they are there waiting?

                                         ALEX

Yes, Angela… the High Lama is aware of everything concerning these mountains and this monastery.

                                         INDIANA JONES

But… what is to be done, Alex?  Hitler will ruin this place, his intention of building a Third Reich will flourish within the confines of these mountains.

                                         ALEX

I struggle with the knowledge that I paved the way for it to happen, Indy.  My only hope was that I could somehow counter act what I have done and restore balance to Shangri La once again.  Stromberg will find this place… unless somebody stops him.

                                         INDIANA JONES

You mean me…

                                         ALEX

Yes, Indy, I mean you.  I didn’t intend for Angela to be even requested that she make the trip.  I wouldn’t have risked her welfare… or yours.  But you were the only person I could think of that couldn’t resist the chance to solve the mystery of the whereabouts of Shangri La. 

                                         INDIANA JONES

And charge in to the rescue?  I led them here, Alex!

                                         ALEX

No Indy, Aldebaran’s dance led them here, as it led you.

                                         INDIANA JONES

What of the High Lama?  If he has known about this impending disaster, why didn’t he take steps to avoid it?

                                         QUIE

Shangri La has always been open to everyone.  There are no strangers here, only guests.  So it has been for over two hundred years.

                                         ALEX

It has been the belief of the people that Shangri La can change everyone for the good, given enough time.  The people here won’t put up even passive resistance.  They rely on these mountains, this valley and this monastery to provide an Ambassador of good will that will disarm even the most hostile invader.  It is not in them to fight.

Indy stands up and helps Angela to her feet.  He brushes himself off and stands looking down at Alex and Quie.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Alex, you know that is a bunch of malarkey.  There are things that any man if pushed hard enough will defend.

                                         ALEX

I’m sorry to have gotten you into this, my friend.  Your choosings are contrary to our beliefs.

                                         QUIE

Violence is not the way of my people.

                                         INDIANA JONES

There are some things that are just worth fighting for!

 Indy takes hold of Angela and they head back towards the monastery.

                                         ALEX

Where are you going, Indy?

                                         INDIANA JONES (over his shoulder)

To see your royal Highness!

                                         ALEX

But He only grants an audience when HE feels the need to do so…

                                         INDIANA JONES (stops and turns)

He’ll feel the need, trust me.

FADE

INTERIOR.  THE MONASTERY.  DAY.  Indy comes across Chang in the foyer.

                                         CHANG

Good afternoon, Dr. Jones.

                                        INDIANA JONES

Chang, I need to find Conway right away!

                                         CHANG

That is most interesting, Dr. Jones.  He has asked me to locate you!  Please accompany me.

They head off towards a staircase leading to the next level and find Conway waiting at the top.

                                         CONWAY

Good afternoon, Indy.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Conway, it is imperative that I meet the High Lama at once!  I have an urgent matter to discuss with him that will not wait another minute!

                                         CONWAY

Yes, of course, Indy.  I’ll be pleased to accompany you and make the introduction.

                                         INDIANA JONES

You will…?  Fine, fine… then let’s go.

                                         CONWAY

Please excuse us, Chang.

Chang bows and exits back down the stairs.  Conway and Indy walk down the hallway.

                                         INDIANA JONES

This place is in danger; all of you are in grave danger!  The High Lama must be reasoned with before it is too late!

                                         CONWAY

The High Lama is always reasonable, Indy.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Let’s hope so.

CUT TO:  An interior room, dimly lit with an oversized chair.  Indy and Conway walk in and Indy looks around.  He turns to Conway.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Conway, there isn’t much time, please have the High Lama meet with me now.

                                         CONWAY

Indy, when you meet the High Lama… will you listen to Him?

                                         INDIANA JONES

It is he that must listen, Conway!  There are powers at work here that he must be prepared for!

Conway walks to the chair and strokes it’s back for a moment.  He turns and looks at Indy.

                                         CONWAY

The High Lama will grant you an audience, Indy.

Then Conway takes a seat on the chair and gazes at Indy.  Indy is silent for a moment, then realizes he is in the presence of the High Lama.

                                         INDIANA JONES

You!

Conway/the High Lama bows from his seat.

                                         CONWAY

How may I help you, my son?

                                         INDIANA JONES

You’re the High Lama?  Why did you keep it secret from me?  … from all of us?

                                         CONWAY

There are no secrets, Indy, only the truths we do not know.  I find it easier to read men’s hearts when they are relaxed and free of apprehension.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Have you read my heart?

                                         CONWAY

I have found you to be a good man, Indy.  A man dedicated to the fine fight; trustworthy and honorable, a man whose friendship I value greatly.  A man worthy of these surroundings.  Shangri La has benefited greatly from your being here.

Indy moves to Conway/the High Lama and sits at his feet.

                                         INDIANA JONES

You know of the trouble that approaches your community?

                                         CONWAY

I have sensed it for a long time.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Won’t you warn your people of the impending danger?

                                         CONWAY

There are forces at work that are beyond our powers to comprehend, at present.

                                         INDIANA JONES

There are forces at work that seek to destroy your way of life and yet you will do nothing to stop it?

                                         CONWAY

Events were set into motion that must run their course.  Shangri La and it’s people have endured for centuries by conducting themselves to one simple rule… to be kind.  Kindness will overpower all adversity, Indy.  It has been that way since the founding of the Earth.

Conway/the High Lama leans forward and places his hand on Indy’s shoulder and smiles.

                                         CONWAY

Do you recall the various emotions that accompanied your group when you arrived here just a few short weeks ago?  Animosity, anxiety, fear and suspicion?  Have you not noticed the tranquility amongst your fellow travellers?  Even your dog has taken to eating straw.  In Shangri La, “the Lion has lied down with the Lamb.”

                                        INDIANA JONES

You are the reader of hearts.  Doesn’t a person need to be inclined towards goodness before he can be persuaded to succumb to it?

Conway/the High Lama sits back and nods thoughtfully.

                                         CONWAY

You are a wise man, Indy.  It is true that not all souls are receptive to the benefits of Shangri La.  It is an oddity that still defies logic.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Some people are just plain crazy.

Indy stands before Conway/the High Lama, he thinks for a moment then backs away.

                                         INDIANA JONES

There are times when kind must be returned in kind.  There are times when you have to fight to do what’s right, and times when it is right to fight.  I respect your valley, it’s people, it’s beliefs and ethics… but there comes a time when things like these must be protected… fought for, if necessary.

                                         CONWAY

And we respect your convictions, Indy.  But if you take to using the sword… Shangri La will neither assist or hamper you.  If it is your choice, I’m afraid you must go alone.  Violence is not our way… it only begets more violence.

                                         INDIANA JONES

Sometimes… it is the only way, the only thing that your enemies understand because kindness begets advantage… advantage to the aggressor!  I would rather the world gather at your feet and sing Koom-Bi-Ya but I don’t see that happening anytime soon.

                                         CONWAY

So you are determined to go your own way in this, my son?

                                         INDIANA JONES

Every fiber of my being tells me I must try to stop this madness…

Indy bows and then exits.

                                         CONWAY

Go in peace, my son.

Chang re-appears in the doorway.

                                         CHANG

This one is as difficult as your brother was.

                                         CONWAY

With the exception that this ones motivations are pure, Chang.  Self sacrifice is the noblest of all virtues.

                                         CHANG

Will he return?

                                         CONWAY

He has a helper, and one he has not counted on.  I see his heart will remain with us, he will spend a lifetime seeking to regain it.

(to be continued with the conclusion of Indiana Jones and the Dance of Aldebaran) 

                                      

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