Int. Gilbert House - Night
Stefan sits on the couch in the Gilbert house watching The National Geographic channel. Tears stream down his face as he tries to suppress his sobs. Just then Elena enters through the front door and throws her jacket over the banister. Stefan quickly wipes the tears from his face and shuts the TV off. He stands, trying to act as tho he’s fine.
Stefan: Hey. You’re back early. Figured you’d still be at the movies.
Elena: The movie was too gory. There was so much blood splattering everywhere my hunger was getting out of control. Had to leave before I caused a scene.
Stefan: What movie you end up seeing?
Elena: The girls wanted to see Leo in Django Unchained.
Elena then notices Stefan has been crying.
Elena: Oh my God, Stefan, are you ok?
Unable to hold back, Stefan begins to sob again as he sinks back on to the couch. Elena crosses over and sits next him, concerned.
Elena: Stefan, what’s the matter? What happened?
Stefan: I’m embarrassed to say.
Elena: You can tell me. What is it?
Stefan: The National Geographic Channel just ran this special on endangered animals. Did you know the Rhinoceros has been poached into near extinction? 700 killed last year alone.
Elena: Wait, what? What are you talking about?
Stefan: The Rhinos are almost dead! All of them! Killed by poachers who sell their horns on the black market to men in Vietnam who can’t get a boner.
Elena: Stefan, what do you mean they can’t get a boner?
Stefan: People believe that ground up Rhino horn taken in pill form gives them sexual power.
Elena: Really? Do you think it works?
Stefan: That’s not the point, Elena!
The point is these beautiful, majestic animals are being poached into extinction over voodoo Viagra! Superstitious supplements!
Elena: I’m confused, Stefan. Since when did you care about the wellbeing of animals?
Stefan: Never! I’m just as confused as you! This is not like me. But NatGeo showed this story about a baby Rhino who’s mother was killed before its very eyes, and I shit you not, Elena, I’ve never heard such a heart breaking sob as I heard come from that baby Rhino. It broke my heart into a million pieces. I haven’t felt like this in over a hundred years.
Stefan composes himself, and looks determinedly at Elena.
Stefan: Elena, something must be done to stop the senseless slaughter of these innocent creatures.
Elena, coldly leans back.
Elena: You’re not gonna get all animal crusader on me are you?
Just then Damon busts through the front door.
Elena: I’m right here, Damon.
Damon sees her on the couch with Stefan, and quickly crosses over to them. Damon then sees Stefan has been crying. His demeanor shifts into compassion.
Damon: Hey brother, what’s the matter?
Elena: Don’t ask.
Damon: What is it Stefan?
Stefan: The Rhinos are almost dead.
Stefan: The Rhinos are almost dead! Poached into near extinction!
Elena: I need a drink. You want anything Damon? Stefan?
They shake their head no. Elena gets up and exits to the kitchen
Stefan: I feel so helpless, Damon. I was watching this special on NatGeo about how animal poaching is killing all the Rhinos and destroying our ecosystem in the process. It made me so damn angry. I want to do something about it, Damon. I wanna see those poachers dead. I wanna kill them all and watch them die a slow painful death.
Damon: Wait. Just slow down here. I’ve never seen you like this before.
Stefan: I know, me neither. I hate myself for it too.
Stefan: Because it makes me feel weak and powerless… Damon. Damon, I need to do something about this. Help me.
Damon sees how serious Stefan is.
Damon: I know someone who can help.
Damon: He’s an actor I just read about. He’s started a foundation to raise money and help spread awareness about these very kinds of problems.
Stefan: What’s his name?
Damon: I forget.
Stefan: Has he been in anything Ive seen.
Damon: I don’t know, but I’ll find out. Look, don’t worry brother. I’ll help you. We’ll figure something out. Together. Even if we have to go to Africa and kill a bunch of poachers to help save the Rhinos.
Stefan smiles. Grateful. Damon smiles back.
Stefan: Thank you Damon.
Damon: Hey, I’m just glad to see your humanity is turned back on. Tho I’m a little surprised it took a baby rhino to do it.
Stefan: Hey, don’t tell anyone ok. I don’t want people thinking I’ve gone all soft.
Damon: Hey, don’t worry about it. You’re secret’s safe with me. Ya big softy.
In the background, we hear Elena sigh a sound of revulsion. She then crosses in the background grabbing jacket off the banister and exits out the front door.
Damon: What’s her problem?
Stefan: I don’t think she likes rhinos.
We fade out.
To be continued…
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