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Dexter Pilot

FADE IN

ON THE FULL MOON

Millions of glittering stars behind it and as we start pulling back off the stars, we HEAR the even VOICE of --

DEXTER (V.O.)

TonightÕs the night. And itÕs going to happen again and again. Has to happen.

PANNING DOWN

Passing the moon -- wonderfully bright in all its redness.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Nice night.

PANNING FURTHER DOWN UNTIL

The moonlight illuminates the restless, inner city streets of Miami and we start moving through them -- passing the neon lit bars with enthusiastic DRINKERS, clueless GERMAN TOURISTS, wearing shorts, black socks and sandals, long legged MODELS flirting on the boulevard, blue collar CUBANO MEN sipping espresso, a few scantily clad HOOKERS hawking johns and a band of RUNAWAYS looking for handouts --

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
MiamiÕs a great town -- love the Cuban food, pork sandwiches -- my favorite...but IÕm hungry for something different now.

A nervous middle-aged COUPLE, clearly lost, RACES in and out of the pools of light cast by the city street lights.

A HONDA CIVIC, CIRCA LATE 1980Õs

Drives into frame, turns a corner, drives down a main boulevard, approaches an intersection -- the overhanging light turns RED and as the car stops, we push into --

THE WINDSHIELD AND SEE

A MAN behind the wheel of that Civic but we canÕt see his face.

CUT TO:

EXT. BAND SHELL - PARK - MIAMI, FL - NIGHT

PROUD PARENTS sit on the grass, opened picnic baskets in front of them.

Their eyes focused on two dozen BOYS (12-14) wearing snappy looking ties and jackets, singing a beautiful rendition of ÒBach Magnificat.Ó

With a flourish, the tuxedoed CHOIR MASTER (40Õs), handsome, all-American looking, with a scrubbed clean face, guides the boys to the stunning crescendo.

The CROWD stands, ERUPTS with applause. The boys smile.

The Choir Master turns, bows to the audience -- more applause, then rises, blows kisses to his perky little WIFE and their TWO young DAUGHTERS standing in the front row.

FREEZE FRAME ON THE CHOIR MASTER

DEXTER (V.O.)

There he is -- Mike Donovan. He is the one.

(contained excitement)

BACK TO SCENE

The kids all walk off the stage, join their happy parents on the lawn. The Choir Master joins his wife, bends down, gives her a kiss, hugs his two sweet little girls.

Everyone starts packing up their picnic baskets --

CUT TO:

EXT. STREET - BORDERING THE PARK - MIAMI, FL - LATER

The Choir Master walks his wife and daughters to a Buick sedan. Helps them get in, buckles up the kids -- waves as the car drives off.

He turns, walks up the street, passes the Civic, but the Man sitting behind the wheel is no longer there.

NEW ANGLE

The Choir Master comes closer, closer to a --

FORD TAURUS STATION WAGON

And STOPS right before us, so close we can almost touch him. He fumbles in his pocket for his keys and after a beat, the key finally enters the lock, the station wagon door opens and as the Choir Master slides in behind the wheel, SUDDENLY --

A MAN

POPS UP from the back seat, quicker than a jack in the box, and with incredible quickness WHIPS a fishing line around the Choir MasterÕs neck, pulls it very TIGHT.

THE CHOIR MASTERÕS EYES go wide and his face turns white.

The MAN behind him turns toward the camera, and we finally SEE --

DEXTERÕS FACE (30Õs), good looking with carefully constructed features, eyes that are full of life.

FREEZE FRAME ON HIS FACE

DEXTER (V.O.)

My name is Dexter -- Dexter Morgan and IÕm going to kill this man tonight.

BACK TO SCENE

Dexter turns back to Donovan, leans in close to his ear, whispers menacingly.

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
YouÕre mine now, so do exactly as I say.

DONOVAN

What do you want..?

(struggling, barely audible)

And Dexter pulls the fishing line tighter, cuts into DonovanÕs skin.

DEXTER

Be good and maybe IÕll let you live a little longer. Now drive.

(beat)

I want you to be quiet.

(hard)

And Donovan pulls out of the spot.

CUT TO:

EXT. DIRT ROAD - OUTSKIRTS OF MIAMI, FL - LATER

The station wagon driving down a dirt road flanked by swampland. It doesnÕt look good. We can see it in DonovanÕs eyes.

DEXTER

Turn here.

Donovan turns the wheel and the car rumbles toward --

EXT. AN OLD HOUSE - OUTSKIRTS OF MIAMI, FL - SAME

The car stops in front of a ramshackle home -- clearly hasnÕt been lived in for years. To the side of the house is a small yard where we see THREE MOUNDS of dirt piled high.

The car STOPS. Donovan stares at the mounds, then snaps his eyes shut. Dexter releases the noose.

DEXTER

Get out.

Donovan STUMBLES out of the car, falls to the ground, starts to whimper.

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
(sharp, demanding)
You have to listen and do what I say. You should know that. ItÕs important.

After a beat, Donovan slowly gets up and the two of them stare at each other. ThereÕs a weird understanding between the two. Dexter smiles, says softly --

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
In the house.

Dexter whips the fishing line back around the DonovanÕs neck and they both walk up to the front door and enter --

INT. THE OLD HOUSE - OUTSKIRTS OF MIAMI, FL - SAME

Dexter KICKS the door closed, quickly flips on a flood lamp, lights up the room, leans into DonovanÕs ear, whispers...

DEXTER

Look.

Donovan is too scared, tries to turn his head away --

DONOVAN

No.

DEXTER

Oh yes...

DONOVAN

NO! NO!

(struggling)

But Dexter twists the noose tighter and DonovanÕs SCREAMS are cut off.

DEXTER

ItÕs horrible, isnÕt it? IsnÕt it?

But Donovan SLAMS his eyes shut even tighter.

DONOVAN

Please.

(pleading)

Dexter GRABS the back of DonovanÕs neck, SPINS him around, SLAMS his face into a wall, then grabs his hair and pulls DonovanÕs head back.

DEXTER

OPEN YOUR EYES AND LOOK AT WHAT YOU

DID -- LOOK OR IÕLL CUT YOUR EYELIDS
RIGHT OFF OF YOUR FACE.

DonovanÕs eyes pop open wide, and we finally SEE ---

THREE SMALL BODIES

Three little dead BOYS laid out on plastic sheets and spread out in a semi-circle before them.

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
It took me a long time to get all these little boys clean -- one of them had been in the ground so long he was falling apart -- Pulled him out in bits and pieces.

DONOVAN

NO.

And then in a deeply heartfelt voice Donovan starts mumbling in a mantra-like way --

DONOVAN (CONTÕD)
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord...

DEXTER

STOP! That never helped anyone.

(furious)

DONOVAN

Please.

DEXTER

ItÕs time for the truth.

DONOVAN

Please...You can have anything --

(pleading again)

DEXTER

ThatÕs good. Beg. Did these little boys beg?

Donovan SCREAMS and Dexter lets go. Donovan falls forward and lands on his face sobbing, sniveling.

DONOVAN

I couldnÕt help myself, I just couldnÕt...Please, you have to understand.

Dexter looks down at him --

DEXTER

Trust me, I definitely understand.

Then Dexter grabs him, lifts him up, stares into his eyes.

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
See, I canÕt help myself either.
(w/disgust)
But children. I could never do that. Not like you. Never, ever kids.

DONOVAN

Why?

(rhetorical, plaintive)

DEXTER

I have standards.

And then in a flash, Dexter pulls a syringe out of his pocket, PLUNGES the needle deep into DonovanÕs neck. His eyes instantly roll up and into the back of his head and when we see nothing but white, he collapses onto the floor.

Dexter leans down, picks him up by his collar, drags him up the stairs.

CUT TO:

INT. SECOND FLOOR, OLD HOUSE - OUTSKIRTS MIAMI, FL - LATER

Flood lamps illuminate the clean, white, freshly painted room.

The windows are sealed with thick plastic sheets and on the table in the middle of the room --

Donovan lies naked, but his arms and legs are strapped down with duct tape. His eyes wide open and his mouth is stuffed with thick wads of white gauze.

Placed strategically around the room are boxes lined with white garbage bags and on a smaller table next to the Choir Master are bottles of chemicals, small saws, drills, scalpels and knives of every shape and size. ItÕs an unseemly display of gleaming metallic, sterile utensils.

Dexter, now wearing a clean set of pressed surgical blues and a pair of surgical gloves, looks down at Donovan.

DEXTER

Soon, youÕll be packed into a few neatly wrapped Hefties and my own small corner of the world will be a neater, happier place. A better place.

Dexter lifts a very sharp scalpel and an eye dropper off the table, leans over Donovan and with the scalpel makes a small precise little incision on the manÕs forehead.

Blood trickles out and using the eyedropper, Dexter very carefully, sucks a few blood droplets up and into the small tube of glass.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Blood. Sometimes it sets my teeth on edge.

When he sees the blood, Dexter clearly gets excited --

But after a beat, he controls himself, then very carefully squeezes the rubber top of the eye dropper over a glass slide and a few tear drops of blood gently spatter onto the slide, then he presses a second piece of glass over it, seals the two slides together --

FREEZE ON THE BLOOD SLIDE

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Other times, it helps me control the chaos.

BACK TO SCENE

Dexter slips the glass slide into his shirt pocket, smiles, then grabs a small surgical saw off the table -- we HEAR the whirl of its motor running and as Dexter slowly brings the saw down toward DonovanÕs crotch --

We fade to --

!BLACK.

!FADE BACK UP ON:

EXT. BOSTON WHALER - CANALS - MIAMI, FL - 4:30AM

Dexter stands behind the wheel of his little whaler, put-put-puttering past the early morning fishing boats -- a huge smile on his face.

Dexter eyes a leather-skinned FISHERMEN standing on his commercial fishing boat -- waves to him.

DEXTER

Ahoy -- Ahoy there, Captain. Any big Marlin out there today?

The fisherman smiles, waves back and Dexter smiles wide as he navigates his boat out of the bay.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Whatever made me the way I am left me hollow, empty inside. People fake a lot of human interactions -- but I fake it all and I fake it very well.

A couple of speed boats cross dangerously in front of him.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
And thatÕs my plight -- I care about people as much as I care about lawn furniture but I canÕt blame my foster parents for that. Harry and Doris Morgan did a wonderful job raising me. But theyÕre both dead now.
(beat)
I didnÕt kill them.
(beat)
Honest.

And just then a testosterone injected CIGARETTE BOAT cuts across his bow causing a large wave to SPLASH over DexterÕs deck and we --

FLASHBACK TO:

EXT. CAMPGROUNDS - CENTRAL FL - LATE AFTERNOON

ItÕs a beautiful, warm Sunday afternoon in the bucolic woods, overlooking a small, lazy river.

HARRY (50Õs), DexterÕs foster father -- a diamond in the rough, tough exterior, but soft at heart -- pulls a flask out of his pants pocket, slowly unscrews the top, downs a slug of booze, then slips the flask back into his pants.

YOUNG DEXTER (12) watches his father very carefully, then picks up a small bottle of milk, unscrews the top, takes a sip, screws the top back on, then tries to slip it into his pants -- just like his father, but it doesnÕt fit so he sets it aside.

Harry stares into nothingness -- then turns to his adopted son and says very softly, simply --

HARRY

YouÕre different, arenÕt you, Dexter?

Dexter swallows hard, looks nervously at his dad.

YOUNG DEXTER

What do you mean, Pop?

(haltingly)

HARRY

The Billups say Buddy disappeared.

Little Dexter turns away.

HARRY (CONTÕD)
(softly)
I found the grave, son.

YOUNG DEXTER

That dog was a noisy little creep, Pop. He was barking all night and Mom couldnÕt sleep and sheÕs very, very sick and that lousy dog was yapping at every leaf that blew down the sidewalk.

(defensive)

Harry looks at Dexter.

HARRY

There were a lot of bones in there, Dexter and...not just BuddyÕs.

Little Dexter fidgets.

HARRY (CONTÕD)
How long have you been doing this, son?

Dexter looks away then looks back into his fatherÕs eyes.

YOUNG DEXTER

Pop...Are you mad?

(beat)

About a year and a half.

Harry stares at little Dexter, then slowly drapes his arm around his son and pulls him close. And as they stare into the river water, weÕre suddenly --

!BACK ON:

DEXTER

And as his boat disappears into the morning fog, we see the back of the Whaler and itÕs named the ÒSLICE OF LIFE.Ó

CUT TO:

INT. DEXTERÕS APARTMENT - COCONUT GROVE, FL - DAWN

Dexter walks into his apartment, closes the door behind him. It appears more like a library than a home -- book shelves are everywhere and all the books are categorized, alphabetized and lined up perfectly.

Dexter walks past a stack of files, all labeled ÒMISSING PERSONS: PROPERTY OF MIAMI P.D.,Ó heads to the air conditioner stuck in the window -- turns it up even colder.

In the middle of the room is a large desk -- with a computer and the book GrayÕs Anatomy on top.

Dexter whips out a set of keys, unlocks the bottom desk drawer, pulls out a long rectangular wood box, sets it on his desk, lifts off the lid and from his shirt pocket, pulls out the slide of blood we saw him extract from Donovan.

Dexter stares at it for a beat, then --

DEXTER (V.O.)

And so am I.

(beat)

At least the code of Harry, my wonderful father, is satisfied.

He files it amongst many other slides inside the box, slams the drawer shut, locks it, then picks up a Miami Police Department folder entitled: ÒJAWORSKI.Ó

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
He was a great cop here in Miami, taught me how to think like one, even though IÕm not. Taught me how to cover my tracks.
(beat)
IÕm a very neat monster.

As he puts the folder down, he notices his answering machine is BLINKING. Dexter eyes it, presses a button and we HEAR --

DEBRA (O.S.)

Dexter...DEXTER, YOU THERE?! ANSWER THE FUCKEN PHONE.

SMASH CUT TO:

EXT. PARKING LOT - LA MAMACITA HOTEL - MIAMI, FL - SAME

And we see DEBRA (20Õs -- DexterÕs outstanding-looking foster sister) dressed as a classic cheap whore, her shapely body shrink wrapped tight in a pink neon tube-top, mini-skirt, fishnet stockings and high heels, talking urgently into her cell phone.

DEBRA

Okay...Dex, please, soon as you get in -- IÕm at a crime scene by this shit-hole, the Mamacita Motel and I need you here right away...Okay, Dex? Please. Pretty fucken please with cheese on top.

She slaps her cell phone closed and we --

CUT BACK TO:

DEXTER

Smiling.

DEXTER (V.O.)

ThatÕs my marvelous foul-mouthed foster sister, Deborah.

CUT TO:

INT. BATHROOM - DEXTERÕS APARTMENT - COCONUT GROVE, FL - LATER

Dexter takes a very hot shower, lathers up all over, scrubs his face hard, then kneads the shampoo deep into his scalp and enjoys the whole experience a great deal.

DEXTER (V.O.)

SheÕs the only person in the world who cares if IÕm alive or dead. She loves me. Why? I donÕt know. IÕm unlovable. I have no feelings about anything.

CUT TO:

INT. BEDROOM - DEXTERÕS APARTMENT - COCONUT GROVE, FL - LATER

Dexter quickly gets dressed. Slips on a snappy looking bowling shirt, khakis, all light and airy. HeÕs good to go.

DEXTER (V.O.)

...But if I could have feelings at all, IÕd have them for Deb.

CUT TO:

EXT. PARKING LOT - LA MAMACITA MOTEL - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter gets out of his air conditioned Civic, is momentarily stunned by the brutally hot morning sun.

He heads toward A CROWD OF polyester-wearing RETIREES, hand-me-down-wearing CUBANO refugees and bikini-wearing TOURISTS, standing behind the yellow police tape cordoning off this dingy low-life, hell-hole of a motel advertising hourly rates. But right now, the rooms are empty and the parking lot is full with COP CARS, AMBULANCES, and MEDICAL EXAMINER VANS.

DEXTER (V.O.)

ThereÕs something strange and disarming about looking at a homicide scene in the bright daylight of the Miami sun. It makes the most grotesque killings look antiseptic, staged -- like youÕre in a new and daring section of Disney World. Dahmer-Land.

Dexter scoots under the yellow tape when SUDDENLY a very intimidating-looking UNIFORMED COP blocks his path.

COP

You better be a cop.

Dexter flashes his OFFICIAL MIAMI-DADE FORENSIC DEPT. I.D.

DEXTER

No. Forensics.

The Cop eyes the badge then waves him in. Dexter walks past him, then SEES amongst all the other COPS hanging around --

Debra still looking like a cheap whore, running up to him.

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
Jeeze Deb, where the hell do you keep your gun?

DEBRA

Cut the crap -- They found another hooker. At least, they think itÕs a hooker.

(catching her breath)

DEXTER

Why?

DEBRA

Hard to tell from whatÕs left. ThatÕs the third in the last five months.

DEXTER

You mean thereÕs...

(intrigued)

Third?

DEBRA

Hell yeah we got a serial killer, Bro - - the other two were up in Broward County -- chopped up in bits and pieces too, and they say thereÕs no connection. Any drooling moron could see these kills are connected. But that bitch...

DEXTER

What bitch?

DEBRA

That bitch. That thin-hipped dope, Lieutenant Laguerta -- Look at her.

And Dexter turns and SEES --

LT. MARIA LAGUERTA (30Õs), the definitively thin-hipped, but intensely sexy, Cuban born head of Miami-Dade homicide, talking rapid fire to a clearly nervous Cuban PORTER.

DEBRA (CONTÕD)
SheÕs the lead on the case. How the hell does that happen?

DEXTER

SheÕs a born politician -- kiss enough ass and you get the post. Maybe you should try it sometimes.

DEBRA

Blow me. SheÕs convinced thereÕs a witness and I want in on this case -- itÕs my beat but instead of using me, sheÕs got some detectives I never met interviewing my whores who -- trust me -- are not going to talk to those dudes. What an idiot. Idiot. Idiot.

LaGuerta catches DexterÕs eye and in the midst of her rapid paced conversation with the Cuban Porter, smiles at Dexter, then her eyes quickly scan the crowd, the crime scene.

DEXTER (V.O.)

Uh oh...thereÕs that frown and those darting eyes. Perhaps sheÕs hoping a clue will leap out of nowhere and she can shoot it.

DEBRA

Dex...DEX...Jesus, where the hell did you go?

Dexter turns, smiles at Deb.

DEXTER

What are you going to do?

DEBRA

IÕm going to get the hell out of this sex suit and get into the homicide division, thatÕs what I want to do. But that ass kissing puta is gonna stick her bony ass in the way. Shit, why does she have to hate my goddamn guts?

DEXTER

Cause you hate hers.

DEBRA

Look, I donÕt need you to reiterate the fucken obvious. Okay? Now are you going to help me?

DEXTER

IÕll do anything for you, but...

DEBRA

DonÕt be fucken dense on me now. You know what I need, Dex -- you have these things, these hunches -- you know with these types of murders.

(cuts him off)

DEXTER

All right, let me take a look and in the meantime, avoid LaGuerta and talk to Captain Mathews and ask him to put you on the case. But keep the sex suit on -- itÕll help your cause.

(off her look)

Just sometimes, Deb...

DEBRA

Why do I love you?

(shakes her head)

And with that, she takes off. Dexter smiles.

CUT TO:

EXT. DOWN THE ALLEY - MIAMI, FL - SAME

Dexter walks down the alley and SEES --

VINCE MASUKA (30Õs), slight, half Japanese, half white, sporting a slicked-back ÒDon HoÓ haircut, meticulously brushing for fingerprints around the exterior of a large green dumpster while...

ANGEL BATISTA (30Õs), the corpulent, chain-smoking Miami-Dade Medical Examiner, leans into the dumpster and very carefully plucks out body parts which are all individually wrapped up in white butcherÕs paper and neatly tied with twine.

BatistaÕs last grab is clearly a foot and...Angel sets it down amongst a lot of other body parts (legs, hands, individual fingers...) on a blue plastic tarp, and like a puzzle weÕre beginning to see the complete human figure laid out. ItÕs gruesome, but still, thereÕs something...something almost intriguingly artistic about it.

Masuka looks up, wipes the sweat off his brow, sees Dex and smiles with a big fake smile.

FREEZE ON MASUKAÕS FACE

DEXTER (V.O.)

SomethingÕs wrong with this guy, Masuka.

ItÕs like he learned how to smile from those models in a Sears catalogue.

BACK TO SCENE

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
Nice haircut, Masuka.

MASUKA

Saw your sister. Damn...looking hot.

(too excited)

DEXTER

She should. ItÕs hot as hell out here.

MASUKA

So what brings you here?

(shrugs)

DEXTER

Came to see how the real experts operate.

Masuka flashes that fake smile again, then starts laughing -- his whole body convulsing in great heaves and gasps, almost sounds like heÕs drowning.

Dexter stares at him in amazement, then --

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
And that laugh. Do I perform CPR or the Heimlich?

Masuka finally stops laughing.

MASUKA

Seriously, why are you here?

DEXTER

ItÕs a crime scene.

(rhetorically)

MASUKA

Yeah, but you do blood spatter.

DEXTER

So?

MASUKA

So, thereÕs no blood here.

Dexter stares at him, then suddenly feels light-headed, takes a step back, something has happened. His world is clearly rocked. Finally, he recoups, focuses back on Masuka.

!DEXTER (V.O.) (CONT'D)

DEXTER

What was that?

MASUKA

Yeah...ThereÕs no blood in or on or near the body at all. ItÕs the weirdest thing you ever saw.

PUSHING INTO DEXTERÕS HORROR STRICKEN FACE

DEXTER (V.O.)

What a gorgeous idea.

(and then his face relaxes)

Why hadnÕt I thought of that? No blood.

(beat)

No blood. No sticky, hot, messy, awful blood. NO BLOOD AT ALL.

Dexter quickly spins around to Angel, then whips out a pair of surgical gloves, snaps them on, leans down next to Angel whoÕs slowly unwrapping a hand with his scalpel.

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
How does he do it? How does the killer get rid of the blood?

ANGEL

Hard to say. The bodyÕs in good shape and she was muy bonita. Had a big ass too. Her headÕs over there, take a look.

Dexter ignores that, leans in, inspects the exposed hand.

DEXTER

This is unique.

MASUKA

No shit and no prints either.

(laughs)

Angel picks away until he finally reveals the tip of an ankle with a small tattoo of a butterfly still on the skin.

DEXTER (V.O.)

This guyÕs good. Good as I could do. IÕve never seen such clean, dry, neat looking dead flesh. Wonderful.

Dexter looks at Angel.

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
Very clean.

ANGEL

Yeah, but he didnÕt finish - no terminado.

DEXTER

Looks pretty completo to me, Angel.

ANGEL

No, look -- he cut the leg in four pieces, almost like using a ruler, but this leg is only in two pieces, and here. Looks like he started to make a third cut but stopped. Possible, he got interrupted.

MASUKA

ThatÕs why LaGuerta is looking for a witness. Working on that motel Porter back there. God help him.

(laughing)

Dexter looks at them both.

DEXTER (V.O.)

I have to get out of here.

(beat)

No blood. I canÕt think.

Dexter rises -- takes one last look at all the marvelous bloodless body parts laid out on the tarp, then without saying anything, turns, walks away from Masuka and Angel.

ANGEL

Dex, donde vas? Where you going?

But Dexter keeps walking and heads out of the alley and disappears behind a group of COPS standing by the squad cars.

CUT TO:

EXT. PARKING LOT - LA MAMACITA MOTEL - MIAMI, FL - SAME

Dexter keeps walking, passes LaGuerta who winks at him.

DEXTER (V.O.)

I wish sheÕd stop that. ItÕs one of those mating rituals which I really donÕt understand.

He suddenly finds himself crowded in by a group of REPORTERS, pushing their microphones and cameras into the face of --

CAPTAIN MATHEWS (50Õs), slick and manicured, three hundred dollar shoes, five hundred dollar suit, and a million dollar ego.

CAPT. MATHEWS

I have the utmost faith in this department and with Lt. LaGuerta leading...

REPORTER

Captain Mathews...Captain -- we understand there were similar killings in Broward...are we talking about a serial killer?

(interrupting)

CAPT. MATHEWS

ThereÕs no evidence to suggest...

REPORTER

Then itÕs the work of a lone psychopath?

CAPT. MATHEWS

Listen, we live in Miami so I guess, the chances are good.

And as Dexter looks back at the crime scene, we hear --

DEXTER (V.O.)

That bloodless body -- This guy may have exceeded my own abilities.

CUT TO:

EXT. MIAMI BEACH TENNIS CLUB - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter pulls into the white picket-fenced parking lot, filled with top of the line BMWÕs, Mercedes, finds a spot -- Dexter has a clear, unobstructed view of the main entrance of the Club and SEES --

A steady stream of beautiful, tight bodied, bronzed skinned MIDDLE AGED LADIES in their cute little tennis outfits walking in and out of the club.

Dexter turns his head, then SEES --

JAMIE JAWORSKI (30Õs), a short, stocky, pleasant enough looking man, whose large brown eyes might be a little too close together, wearing a traditional janitorial outfit. A small broom and shovel in his tattooed hand.

FREEZE ON JAWORSKI

DEXTER (V.O.)

This guy likes hanging around the wives of the rich and famous. Works the country club circuit, cleaning lockers, painting picket fences.

BACK TO SCENE

Jaworski sweeps up a little dirt, some leaves, while eyeing all the pretty ladies.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Six months ago, I think he fell in love with a pretty brunette, Mrs. Jane Saunders.

Dexter opens a Miami P.D. missing personÕs file, pulls out a picture of Jane Saunders -- and she is a very beautiful brunette.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
A sweet mother of two, married to Harry Saunders a successful banker. They all lived a pleasant life in an overgrown modern house, until she unfortunately disappeared.

FLASH TO:

EXT. NICE HOUSE - UPSCALE NEIGHBORHOOD - MIAMI, FL - DAY

The distraught, handcuffed HUSBAND is led out by COPS. His two KIDS (10-12), surrounded by SOCIAL WORKERS, sob. Off to the side we SEE --

A younger looking LaGuerta proudly talking to the press.

DEXTER (V.O.)

The cops arrested the husband for murder. They never convicted him, but all wasnÕt lost, because they still managed to destroy his life and leave his kids emotionally deficient forever. But I knew he was no killer.

BACK TO SCENE

One of the LADIES drops her tennis bag, bends over and Jaworski freezes, stares at that pantalooned bottom.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
My favorite janitor was a suspect for a while but the cops could never make anything stick.

After a beat, Jaworski, skulks away and disappears into a shed off to the side.

CUT TO:

INT. POLICE HEADQUARTERS - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter, carrying a box of donuts, walks down the high-tech brushed metal walls and the glass enclosed office cubicles, passing UNIFORMED COPS -- weaves in and out of a bunch of casually dressed POLICE DEPARTMENT ADMINISTRATORS, then comes upon two veteran DETECTIVES.

DETECTIVE #1
Hey Dex...

They stop, dig into the box, each grab a cream-filled donut.

DEXTER

Hi Bob, Dan...HowÕre the families?

(happily)

DETECTIVE #2
(with mouth full)
Mmmm...good...You..?

Dexter nods, smiles.

DETECTIVE #1
See you at the next blood bath?

DEXTER

Never miss a party.

The Detectives laugh, mumble ÒthanksÓ and keep walking. Dexter watches them disappear down the hall, then we --

FREEZE ON ALL THE DIFFERENT PEOPLE IN THE HALLWAY

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Salt of the earth these people and they try hard, but with the solve rate for murders at about twenty percent -- Miami is a great place for me to play. A great place for me to hone my craft.

Viva Miami. (accented) Si...Viva Miyami.

BACK TO SCENE

Dexter turns down another hallway, then HEARS --

DEBRA (O.S.)

Dex...

He turns around, sees Deb smiling, dressed in plain clothes and running toward him.

DEXTER

I like your other outfit better.

Debra reaches into his box of donuts, grabs a powdered one.

DEBRA

YouÕre a sick bastard but guess what...the sex suit worked and the Captain put me on the case. LaGuerta wasnÕt happy, but she needs to get laid.

DEXTER

I guess. So congrats...

DEBRA

Got any ideas yet?

(jams the donut in her mouth)

DEXTER

Nope...

DEBRA

Gotta go.

(kisses him)

Well start doing your mental autopsy because I need your theories and thanks for the fucken donut. It sucked.

And with that sheÕs gone. Dexter smiles, turns around and heads down another hallway.

CUT TO:

INT. RECORDS ROOM - POLICE HEADQUARTERS - MIAMI, FL - SAME

And we see CAMILLIA (late 60Õs) sitting at her desk, reading the paper, stirring her Sanka.

!DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)

DEXTER (O.S.)

Donut?

SheÕs frail and thin, too thin, looks almost moth-eaten from the wear and tear of being the sole gatekeeper of the Police DepartmentÕs Office of Records for the past twenty years. SheÕs a tough, intuitive woman who appreciates the donuts Dexter gives her but more importantly loves the attention he pays her.

Behind her are endless rows of ceiling high metal shelves packed with records and files. She looks up, smiles wide, then eyes Dexter suspiciously.

CAMILLIA

Keeping your fingernails clean?

DEXTER

Never leave home without my rubber gloves.

And Camillia dives in, grabs a few crullers.

CAMILLIA

Good boy.

DEXTER

Anything new?

And she hands him a fat file, labeled ÒJaworski.Ó

CAMILLIA

Why do you keep coming in here for this stuff?

DEXTER

IÕve told you before -- and donÕt tell anyone, but blood spatter isnÕt really a full time job. Anyway, itÕs like a hobby -- maybe I can help out -- fills my nights.

(leans in, whispers)

CAMILLIA

You have a morbid sense of fun.

DEXTER

ThatÕs probably true.

(genuinely)

CAMILLIA

You should find a pretty girl.

DEXTER

I found you.

CAMILLIA

Charming like your father -- just donÕt get me fired.

DEXTER

Then who would I bring donuts to?

(smiling)

CUT TO:

INT. LAB - POLICE HEADQUARTERS - MIAMI, FL - SAME

Dexter, light footed as ever, walks through the large, glass enclosed lab, passing the ÒAnalytical,Ó ÒForensicÓ and ÒSerology (blood)Ó sections all packed with SCIENTISTS and ANALYSTS in white coats, hovering over microscopes, computers, and other high tech machines. He reaches into his box of donuts, grabs the last one. Stares into the empty box.

DEXTER (V.O.)

Just like me. Clean, crisp outside, and nothing at all on the inside.

Dexter dumps that box into a garbage can, passes Masuka cataloging prints, heads toward the back of the room and enters his small little glass enclosed office --

INT. DEXTERÕS OFFICE - POLICE HEADQUARTERS - MIAMI, FL - SAME

Where heÕs immediately confronted by --

SGT. DOAKES (30Õs), a large, imposing BLACK MAN, whose cold frosty eyes are framed by a face fixed with a permanent look of hostility -- especially when heÕs around Dexter.

SGT. DOAKES

Where the hell you been?

(hard, impatient)

DEXTER

Crime scene?

Doakes stares at him then looks around the office, eyes --

The poster of MiamiÕs, ÓMatadorÕs Hockey Team,Ó taped to one of the glass walls, but the other walls are plastered with images of blood stained walls, floors, and carpets -- looks almost like a ÒJackson Pollack exhibit.Ó

SGT. DOAKES

What about these?

Doakes shoves two oversized color photos of A COUPLE OF BODIES, lying dead on the carpeted floor of a large hotel room into DexterÕs hands.

SGT. DOAKES (CONTÕD)
(hard)
The hotel coke-head murders? This dealer and the girl?

Dexter scans them -- eyes the blood spatter on the walls.

DEXTER

This hallmark-looking couple didnÕt die by the hands of a professional killer. Nope. This is childÕs play. Messy work -- all that blood on the walls -- looks like finger painting.

SGT. DOAKES

You give me the fucking creeps, you know that Dexter?

DEXTER

Yeah, I know. Sorry about that.

SGT. DOAKES

Fuck you.

(takes a step in)

DEXTER

Is there something I can...

(beat)

Okay...

SGT. DOAKES

Yeah. You can give me your fucking analysis on the blood spatter on these killings. You think IÕm here to invite you to my nephewÕs bris?

DEXTER

I didnÕt know you were Jewish.

SGT. DOAKES

Shut the fuck up and just write your report already.

DonÕt even know why I need you -- so just grab a crayon, psycho and scribble this down: Rival dealer came in -- two scum-bags slashed to hell -- dealer stole the drugs. Wham, bam done and I donÕt give a shit what you say, cause thatÕs what happened and thatÕs who IÕm looking for -- WeÕre looking for a motherfucking thief dealer. Got it?

DEXTER

Okay...sure...I guess, but I need to get back...

(uncertain)

SGT. DOAKES

Then get back there already, you fucking weirdo, I need it quick.

DEXTER

IÕm on it, Sergeant.

And Doakes storms out of the office.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
The only real question I have is why, in a building full of cops...

FLASH TO:

A montage of different DETECTIVES interrogating a series of tough, defiant PERPS.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
...all supposedly with a keen insight into the human soul, is Doakes the only one that gets the creeps from me?

CUT TO:

INT. OCEAN VIEW HOTEL SUITE - MIAMI, FL - LATER

The sliding doors on the balcony are open and hot gusts of wind whip the curtains around.

And in the middle of this suite are a couple of what look like tall microphone stands and --

Emanating from the top of each stand is a series of individual strings stretched across the room and pinned to the blood splattered on the opposite wall and curtains.

!SGT. DOAKES (CONT'D)

On the far right side of the room, the wall is almost entirely covered with one big dripping splotch of blood.

The left side of the room is very different.

The wall is covered with thousands of seemingly random little dots of blood, but like a Pissaro painting, when you step back and away, those abstract dots suddenly transform into a beautiful series of descending arcs, like rainbows of blood.

Dexter pins yet another string to a tiny splat of blood on the wall completing a complex maze of strings -- a massive catÕs cradle hanging across the room.

Dexter walks back away from the wall, stands next to a young buff UNIFORMED COP (20Õs). Dexter admires his work --

UNIFORMED COP

So what are you going to do, catch the guy in this big fucking spider web youÕre making?

DEXTER

Just looking for patterns.

UNIFORMED COP

I heard they brought them out in chunks.

DEXTER

And lots of little pieces too.

(up-beat)

UNIFORMED COP

So this coke dealer and his girl -- The killer used a sword?

DEXTER

Nope, probably a very sharp knife. Look at the blood spatter. Look at the patterns, tells a story. See this big pond of blood right there?

And he steps to the large blot on the right side of the wall.

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
That was from the initial slice. The male victim was standing right here...
(points)
...and the killerÕs knife swooped across, slashed his throat. See -- Notice the long, thick, heavy drips, here and here.

UNIFORMED COP

Yeah, nice.

And Dexter points to the arcs of blood on the left side.

DEXTER

Now over here are nice clean sprays of blood and thereÕs a rhythm to them, and that can only happen when youÕre holding something light, moving quick, nice, sharp slices through the body -- no splashes, no drips, clean and easy, graceful cuts like skipping pebbles across a lake. This guy knew how to use a blade.

UNIFORMED COP

So weÕre looking for a Sushi chef?

FREEZE ON THE COP

DEXTER (V.O.)

Oh God...No wonder Miami suffers a pitiful twenty percent solve rate.

BACK TO SCENE

Dexter stares at the Cop, then very tongue in cheek.

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
Yeah...Sushi chef is possible... WouldnÕt be my first choice -- but hey, you never know.

Dexter walks around the room, picks up his camera, focuses on the cats cradle. Flash, flash...

UNIFORMED COP

Now what?

Dexter looks at the Cop --

DEXTER

Now I eat.

CUT TO:

EXT/INT. DEXTERÕS CIVIC - STREETS - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter drives down a squalid residential street, surrounded by low income housing, barbecue joints and crumbling Catholic Churches. Gang-looking KIDS hang out in front of bodegas, drinking, smoking -- their boom boxes blasting.

Eating a juicy Cuban pork sandwich, Dexter pulls into a parking spot, then puts the sandwich down.

DEXTER (V.O.)

The problem with eating and driving, which I love to do, is not being able to employ the ten-two hand position on the wheel. ItÕs a matter of public safety.

He picks up the new ÒJAWORSKIÓ file Camillia gave him.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
But thereÕs always a sacrifice.

Dexter scans a few pages of the Jaworski file.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Looks like JaworskiÕs been busy...

He turns his head, looks across the street and focuses on a small shitty looking house with a rusty chain link fence blocking the side alley running along the house.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
...recently picked up for a peeping tom episode and flashed a poor soccer mom.
(beat)
Time to take a little tour.

CUT TO:

INT. JAWORSKIÕS HOUSE - MIAMI, FL - DAY

And as soon as Dexter steps inside the front door, we HEAR the loud, vicious BARKS of massive DOG and Dexter FREEZES.

He then SEES that massive mangy dog, out in the backyard, BANGING against the glass sliding door trying to get inside the house.

DEXTER (V.O.)

Animals donÕt like me. Especially dogs.

And that monster dog spins around, bangs into the glass door again -- desperately wanting to take a bite out of Dexter.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
I donÕt think they approve of what I sometimes do to their masters.

And that dog recognizes me, as easily as I can recognize Jaworski...or any other killer.

Dexter calms down, looks around the house. ItÕs small and messy, but above all, sordid. ThereÕs a paper towel holder next to the unmade bed. In the middle of the room is a desk with a computer on it and an expensive looking digital video camera. Dexter picks it up, eyes it curiously.

He then notices a stack of S&M porn magazines -- picks one up -- flips through it, stops on the classifieds, reads a few. Some have been highlighted.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Interesting taste in literature. His needs are evolving -- turning violent. HeÕs on the fast track.

And as Dexter walks out of the house, closing the door behind him, we HEAR --

HARRY (O.S.)

ItÕs okay, son, go on.

Then we slowly --

FLASHBACK TO:

EXT. CAMPGROUNDS - CENTRAL FL - LATE AFTERNOON

Harry still has his arm draped over little DexterÕs shoulders -- looks down at his son.

YOUNG DEXTER

Well...I kinda, you know feel something, like inside, watching me...

HARRY

Do you hear voices?

YOUNG DEXTER

No...itÕs not really a voice -- itÕs something...something different.

And little Dexter looks away.

HARRY

And this something, it makes you -- kill things?

After a beat, Dexter looks back at his father.

!DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)

YOUNG DEXTER

No, well...it doesnÕt really make me. It just makes it seem like a really good idea.

HARRY

Have you ever wanted to kill something else? You know, something bigger than a dog?

YOUNG DEXTER

Yes.

(softly)

HARRY

Like a person?

YOUNG DEXTER

Yeah, but nobody in particular...

HARRY

Why didnÕt you?

Dexter and Harry lock eyes for a beat, then --

YOUNG DEXTER

I thought you wouldnÕt like it. You and mom.

HARRY

ThatÕs why you didnÕt?

YOUNG DEXTER

Are you, Pop?

(beat)

I, uh...I didnÕt want you mad at me -- you know, angry or disappointed.

(fumbling)

And as Harry locks eyes with little Dexter, we --

CUT TO:

EXT. OCEAN AVE - SOUTH BEACH - MIAMI, FL - EVENING

Dexter, looking showered and fresh and wearing another snappy, new bowling shirt, carries a paper bag filled with goodies, walks through the extraordinary parade of gorgeous MEN and WOMEN. Rumba music BLASTING through restaurant speakers follows him as he goes.

DEXTER (V.O.)

Friday night. Date night in Miami. Every night is date night in Miami, and everyoneÕs having sex, but breathe easy, Dex -- ItÕs okay because for me, sex never enters into it.

Dexter walks past a good looking COUPLE sitting at a table at an outdoor cafe, stops -- does a double take...

And sure enough the GUY is sipping a Mojito, while the pretty young GIRL, smoking a cigarette with one hand, slowly and casually massages the guyÕs crotch with the other.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
I donÕt understand sex. ItÕs not in my nature. I donÕt have anything against women, and I certainly have an appropriate sensibility about men, but when it comes to the actual act of sex, it just seems so undignified.

More sexy, young hip WOMEN wearing micro short, tight dresses saunter up and down the boulevard.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
But I have to play the game and after years of trying to look normal, I have finally...

Dexter turns off the boulevard and heads down --

A RESIDENTIAL STREET

DEXTER (V.O.)

...finally met the perfect date...

EXT. FRONT DOOR OF THE HOUSE - MIAMI, FL - SAME

He RINGS the bell. Ding-dong.

DEXTER (V.O.)

...and thatÕs because she is...in her own way...as damaged as me. Been seeing her for about a year now -- just after her ex-husband...

And just then the door SWINGS open, Dexter smiles wide.

INT. MODEST HOUSE - MIAMI, FL - SAME

The door closes, Dexter faces the blushing --

RITA (30Õs), sweet and delicate but vulnerable and amazingly attractive in that breezy, skimpy sun dress sheÕs wearing.

RITA

Be ready in a sec -- just have to talk to the sitter.

DEXTER

Oki-doke.

As she smiles --

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Deb introduced us.

FLASHBACK TO:

INT. SMALL CUBAN RESTAURANT - MIAMI, FL - DAY

Dexter and Deb (now dressed as a uniformed cop) sit in a booth eating plates of crackling chicken.

DEBRA

You need a good woman. Met her on a domestic dispute call.

(and then --)

This is the fucken best.

(chews)

Met a girl last week, Dex...

FLASH TO:

INT. RITAÕS HOUSE - MIAMI, FL - DAY

And we see RITAÕS EX-HUSBAND flipping the dining room table over, grabbing a chair then smashing it over RitaÕs head -- Her two little CHILDREN cower in the corner, and as the ex-husband continues to pummel Rita --

Debra and her MALE PARTNER, both dressed as uniformed cops, run into the house.

DEBRA (V.O.)

He was a fucken crack addict, a sick abusive psycho and I beat the living daylights out of him. But sheÕs pretty -- once her face heals. Anyway sheÕs single now.

Her Male Partner quickly grabs the two kids and Deb rips out her billy-club and starts WHACKING and BASHING the ex-husband over his head. She finally puts him into a choke hold and knocks him unconscious.

BACK TO:

INT. CUBAN RESTAURANT - MIAMI, FL - SAME

Still eating the chicken.

DEXTER

Sounds promising.

DEBRA

Yeah, sheÕs perfect for you -- vulnerable, low self esteem, you know what they say about those kind of girls...probably fuck your brains out. She needs someone to treat her nice. Want her number?

BACK TO SCENE

RITA

Present?

(re: the bag)

DEXTER

Yes, but even though you look wonderful, itÕs not for you.

Rita smiles, spins around, revealing --

Her two children, ASTOR (8), a soft spoken, sweetheart of a girl wearing soft cotton jammies, and her brother CODY (5), a soft skinned, polite young boy, wearing an oversized t-shirt as a nightgown.

ASTOR

Hi, Dexter.

(very softly)

Dexter drops to his knees, smiles.

DEXTER

May I observe that you look lovely this evening.

She eyes him, drops her eyes to the floor, then says coyly --

ASTOR

Okay.

DEXTER

And Master Cody, handsome as ever.

(turns to --)

Dexter rises, walks into the living room -- modest and simple, right out of a cheap catalogue, then turns back to the kids and smiles --

FREEZE ON ASTOR AND CODY

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
I like kids. TheyÕre important and they matter more to me than their mom. But children who witness their crack addict fathers trying to kill their mother with the hard to assemble Ikea furniture...tend to be slightly withdrawn.

BACK TO SCENE

Dexter pulls cartons of ice cream out of his bag.

DEXTER (CONTÕD)
Vanilla, chocolate and strawberry.

CODY

No coffee?

DEXTER

But which do you think melts faster?

(smiles, then --)

They giggle like crazy and just then Rita pops back in --

RITA

Ready?

And as she smiles, we --

FREEZE ON HER DARLING FACE

DEXTER (V.O.)

Deb didnÕt know that her ex-hubby raped her...

FLASHBACK TO:

INT. RITAÕS KITCHEN - MIAMI, FL - NIGHT

And Dexter carrying a box of pizza walks into the living room and SEES --

Rita slip on a nightgown over her pajamas, then wrap herself inside a big cotton robe, curl up on the couch, grab the remote and turn on the T.V.

DEXTER (V.O.)

...and infected her pelvic region with some horrible crack house disease. Ever since then, sheÕs been completely uninterested in sex. Lucky for me.

BACK TO SCENE

RITA

Oh damn, my pocketbook...

And she runs out of the room again. Cody watches her disappear, then turns back to Dexter.

CODY

Are you going to the movies?

DEXTER

If we can find one that doesnÕt make us throw up.

ASTOR

Do you throw up a lot at movies?

(teasing)

CODY

Asstorrrr...

(been through this)

ASTOR

Do you?

(turns back to Dexter)

Well, maybe he does. Maybe he has a vomit problem.

(eyes Cody, smiles)

DEXTER

No, but maybe I should.

And as they laugh Rita bounds back in, her plastic pocketbook in her hand.

RITA

Bed at nine, okay?

CODY

Will you be back?

RITA

Of course IÕll be back.

CODY

I meant Dexter.

(sweetly)

DEXTER

YouÕll be asleep.

CODY

No I wonÕt.

DEXTER

Then IÕll stop in and weÕll all play cards. High stakes poker.

And Cody and Astor lean into Dexter and wrap their arms around his waist -- hug him tight.

RITA

Give Mommy a kiss...

CUT TO:

EXT. JOEÕS STONE CRAB HOUSE - SOUTH BEACH, MIAMI - LATER

Fidgeting, Dexter stands next to Rita, while waiting on a very, very long line, full of the BEAUTIFUL and the HIP, slowly snaking its way into the famous crab shack.

DEXTER (V.O.)

Needless to say, I have some unusual habits, yet all these socially acceptable people canÕt wait to pick up hammers and publicly smash their food to bits.

FLASH TO:

A montage of hammer wielding DINERS maniacally smashing defenseless crustaceans into bits and pieces. And as the shells fly around the room like shrapnel from an exploding car bomb, the diners greedily pick at the meat.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Normal people are so hostile.

BACK TO SCENE

And Dexter smiles at Rita.

CUT TO:

EXT. BAYFRONT PARK - DOWNTOWN MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter and Rita walk through the park packed with D.J.Õs, and CONGA AND BONGO PLAYERS blasting Cubano, Caribbean and hip-hop crap. Blinding strobe and laser lights illuminate the HUNDREDS of skimpily dressed WOMEN and MEN dancing and drinking tequila under the intense midnight heat -- ItÕs a bacchanalian human flesh feast -- but curiously none of these people seem to be aware of --

THE CRIME SCENE

Just yards away, at the edge of the park -- cordoned of with yellow tape and crowded with a dozen POLICE CARS, AMBULANCES, their red and blue lights twirling. DexterÕs suddenly very interested -- grabs RitaÕs hand tight, STOPS walking.

DEXTER

They might need me.

RITA

DonÕt you have a pager?

DEXTER

They donÕt always know they need me.

And with that, he fights his way through the sweltering crowd, heads toward the crime scene and Rita calls out --

RITA

DEX...

CUT BACK TO:

DEXTER

Rushing past COPS, then SEES --

Lt. LaGuerta talking to a few eager REPORTERS but Dexter avoids eye contact, quickly maneuvers around some DETECTIVES and COPS, then SEES --

Angel Batista (the M.E.) in the same position we saw him at the last crime scene -- bent over, examining wrapped body parts (legs, toes, arms) which are once again all neatly laid out on a blue vinyl tarp. Angel looks up -- heÕs grim, tense.

ANGEL

Son of a whore.

DEXTER

Who?

ANGEL

IÕm talking about this hijo de puta -- this ass-hole killer, this maricon savage who makes us work on a Friday night.

DEXTER

Only on Mondays through Thursday. ThatÕs what I always say.

ANGEL

Of course -- be reasonable. Who wants to work on a Friday night? So como ta? What are you doing here?

DEXTER

Why? Same guy, same pattern?

(then eyes him)

Was in the neighborhood...

ANGEL

Bone dry. No blood again.

And Dexter suddenly feels light headed again, paces, re-coups, then leans down next to Angel -- focuses.

ANGEL (CONTÕD)
Mira aqui -- thereÕs a small difference in the cuts this time.
(points to an exposed hand)
Very rough here. Almost emotional. Then here -- not so much, here and here and in-between.

DEXTER

Muy bien.

ANGEL

Yeah, nice, but look at this.

Angel nudges the severed hand aside, taps an exposed femur.

ANGEL (CONTÕD)
Look -- all bone. The killer, flayed the skin completely off. Why would he do that?

Dexter takes a breath, looks at Angel.

DEXTER

HeÕs experimenting. Trying to find the right way.

ANGEL

Is he experimenting with the head too?

DEXTER

What do you mean?

ANGEL

I mean, la bestia took her fucking head. There isnÕt one around here and God knows what heÕs doing with it.

Dexter stares at Angel, gets up and slowly walks away deep in thought.

DEXTER (V.O.)

HeÕs certainly raising the bar. Damn, this guy is good.

CUT TO:

INT. DEXTERÕS CIVIC - IN FRONT OF RITAÕS HOUSE - MIAMI, FL - SAME

The Civic stops. Dexter and Rita sit in silence, then --

RITA

Will they catch him soon?

DEXTER

Doubt it. The killer is an artist...

RITA

What do you mean?

(confused)

But now DexterÕs in his own world and he says very softly...

DEXTER

His technique...itÕs incredible.

RITA

What..? Dex, I can hardly hear what youÕre...

But before she finishes, Dexter SUDDENLY leans over and KISSES HER, long and hard on the mouth.

She pushes him away -- a look of horror crosses her face. She pats her dress down, frantically runs her hands through her hair.

RITA (CONTÕD)
IÕm sorry...I donÕt think I want to -- I mean, IÕm not ready for -- Damn it, Dexter. WHY!?

She unbuckles her seat belt, jerks the door handle up, jumps out of the car, SLAMS the door shut -- runs into her house.

BACK ON DEXTER

DEXTER (V.O.)

Why did I kiss her?

(beat)

No blood.

(beat)

What have I done now? IÕm not even interested. And why canÕt I get that neat stack of body parts out of my head.

And as we push in tight to DexterÕs face, we --

CUT TO:

INT. LIVING ROOM - DEXTERÕS APARTMENT - COCONUT GROVE - LATER

And Dexter looks grim and angry -- sits at his desk, faces his computer -- the large ÒJaworski FileÓ just inches from his fingers and right next to that, is the same porn magazine we saw in JaworskiÕs apartment.

Dexter pounds away on the keyboard and as the images on the computer screen reflect off his face, his shoulders tighten, and his eyes turn cold and black.

DEXTER (V.O.)

ÒScream and Cream.Ó The mother of all rape sites.

(beat)

ThatÕs it. HeÕs definitely the one.

PLAYING ON THE SCREEN

Is a grainy video of the attractive, but the struggling, desperate Jane Saunders is tied down to a stained mattress lying on a filthy basement floor -- and humping away on top of her is -- a short, stocky, masked man with the same tattooed hands we saw on Jaworski.

ItÕs unseemly and nauseating, then it becomes pure evil as we watch Jaworski climax, reach under the mattress, pull out a knife, and as he raises it high in the air, we --

CUT BACK TO:

THE FURIOUS DEXTER

Staring at the computer -- hatred all over his face.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
...Now itÕs just a matter of time before he becomes a drop of blood in my glass slide collection.
(beat)
But I have to wait, because what I do requires infinite planning and I have to be careful and follow the code of Harry.

And as Dexter pushes back from his desk, we hear --

YOUNG DEXTER (O.S.)

Is that why we took this trip, Pop?

FLASHBACK TO:

EXT. CAMPGROUNDS - CENTRAL FL - LATE AFTERNOON

The sun is going down and little Dexter is helping his father build a campfire -- throws a couple of twigs into the pile.

YOUNG DEXTER

To talk about this?

Harry gets on his knees, blows into the embers, the fire ignites, then he stands, faces Dexter.

HARRY

See -- ItÕs not a question of getting soft or seeing things in shades of grey instead of black and white. I really believe itÕs just a matter of understanding things differently -- Understanding things in a better way.

(sits next to Dexter)

IÕm getting old, son, and I think when you get older, people understand things differently.

YOUNG DEXTER

I think I understand.

Beat.

HARRY

YouÕre a good kid, Dexter.

(gently)

Ten years ago, I would have had you committed -- but now I know better.

YOUNG DEXTER

No Pop, IÕm bad. IÕm...

(sincere, distraught)

HARRY

No...YouÕre good...You are, Dex...I know it and you know it and I know it because...because otherwise you wouldnÕt care what me or your mom thought -- youÕd just do it. But weÕre not going to be here forever so we have to get you sorted out.

(cuts him off)

He stares into DexterÕs eyes.

YOUNG DEXTER

Pop, IÕm sorry.

HARRY

Come here, son.

(beat, then very gently)

Harry leans over, flicks the hair away from DexterÕs face.

HARRY (CONTÕD)
What do you remember from before? You know, before we took you in?

Beat.

YOUNG DEXTER

Nothing.

HARRY

Good -- nobody should remember that, because what happened to you as a little boy shaped you.

YOUNG DEXTER

Will I ever remember?

HARRY

I hope not.
(beat)

What happened was too strong, it was too much. It got into you too early, son and itÕs going to stay there -- and listen to me carefully now -- itÕs going to make you want to kill and you wonÕt be able to stop it.

YOUNG DEXTER

So, IÕm going be like this forever?

(sad)

HARRY

This will be our secret. Just between you and me? No one else can ever know.

(beat)

I going to teach you how to choose what and who you kill. Teach you how not to get caught.

(beat)

Yes, and nothing can change that -- but you can channel it. Control it. We can use it for good.

YOUNG DEXTER

Are you sure?

HARRY

IÕm absolutely sure and Dexter -- I want you to, because there are plenty of people who deserve it.

YOUNG DEXTER

So youÕre not mad at me?

HARRY

No, son. I love you.

As Harry smiles at little Dexter, we HEAR --

DEBRA (O.S.)

DonÕt bullshit me, Dex. Give me something before they shut me out.

SMASH CUT TO:

INT. WOLFIEÕS DELI - MIAMI BEACH, FL - MORNING

Crowded and chaotic. Dexter and Deb sit in a booth wolfing down stacks of pancakes and eggs.

DEBRA

LaGuertaÕs still convinced the killer was seen, too scared to finish so she still has me interviewing hookers.

!HARRY (CONT'D)

DEXTER

ItÕs a waste of time. Think, Deb. If he was interrupted...

DEBRA

Jesus Christ Almighty -- Right, because then howÕd he get the time to wrap up all the pieces? What a skinny idiot she is.

(cuts him off, excited)

DEXTER

But now we have a fourth body and the cuts were different. ItÕs telling us a story -- the ritual is changing... HeÕs looking for some inspiration and heÕs not finding it.

(beaming)

DEBRA

So he keeps doing it until he gets it right.

(realizing)

DEXTER

I could be wrong.

But he isnÕt and Deb knows it, then shovels a forkful of pancakes into her mouth and after a couple of hearty chomps --

DEBRA

So, how the hell was your date last night?

(with mouthful)

DEXTER

Great. You ought to try it sometime. You need a life.

DEBRA

I need a transfer to Homicide, then weÕll see about a life.

DEXTER

I understand, it would certainly sound better for the kids to say, ÔMommyÕs in homicide.Õ

DEBRA

DonÕt make me hit you.

(exasperated)

DEXTER

ItÕs a natural thought. And then we can talk about nephews and nieces. More little Morgans. Why not?

DEBRA

You sound like mom.

DEXTER

IÕm channeling her.

DEBRA

Well, change the channel and tell me what you know about cell crystallization?

DEXTER

What do you mean?

(eyes her)

DEBRA

I heard the coroner say it last night - -- he was talking about the dead headless chick.

DEXTER

You got that look in your eye.

(stares at her)

DEBRA

I was there before you and I noticed the body looked different from the others. Her pieces were cold -- Like meat packing cold, so thatÕs what IÕm pondering -- Is that what cell crystallization means?

FREEZE ON DEXTER

DEXTER (V.O.)

My God, why didnÕt I think about that? ItÕs beautiful.

BACK TO SCENE

DEBRA

Dex...what are you thinking?

Dexter looks at his sis, sips some water.

DEXTER

Sorry...But it makes sense. Cold -- slows the flow of blood.

DEBRA

Why the hell is that important?

DEXTER

Just a feeling...but I think maybe he has a thing about blood.

DEBRA

TheyÕre all making fun of me, bro...Calling me Officer Einstein.

(pained)

ThatÕs not enough. Come on, I need to show LaGuerta and her boys.

DEXTER

Why?

DEBRA

If tits were brains.

(as if...)

Dexter looks at her, then after a beat, says --

DEXTER

Refrigerated truck.

Deb eyes him, leans in close, then says softly and slowly --

DEBRA

What-the-fuck-are-you-talking-about?

DEXTER

A refrigerated truck. He wants a cold environment to slow the blood flow. Clean and...mobile, so he can dump the garbage afterwards.

(thinking --)

DEBRA

So weÕre looking for a refrigerated truck now.

DEXTER

Think there are a lot of stolen trucks out there?

(beat)

Probably a stolen one.

DEBRA

You nuts? In Miami?

They break into smiles, then Deb gets up, kisses his head --

DEBRA (CONTÕD)
Love you...thanks.

And sheÕs gone. Dexter looks around takes out a little note pad and pen and starts writing a list. ÒFishing line, scalpels, saws, syringes, heavy-duty garbage bags...Ó

SMASH CUT TO:

INT. DEXTERÕS APARTMENT - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter pours over blue prints that are clearly labeled Baywater Condos.

DEXTER (V.O.)

Preparation is vital. No detail can be overlooked.

SMASH CUT TO:

INT. LARGE ROOM - HALF-BUILT BAYWATER CONDOS - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter staples thick sheets of plastic over the windowless window frames, then mops the unfinished cement floor.

DEXTER (V.O.)

And the ritual is intoxicating.

SMASH CUT TO:

INT. LARGE ROOM - HALF-BUILT BAYWATER CONDOS - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter SNAPS a rubber sheet over a stack of sheet rock in the middle of the unfinished room, pats it down, then cuts pieces of Duct-tape off a large roll and sticks them to the side of the sheet rock.

DEXTER (V.O.)

Duct tape, rubber sheets -- Necessary tools of the trade.

SMASH CUT TO:

INT. LARGE ROOM - HALF-BUILT BAYWATER CONDOS - MIAMI, FL - LATER

He sees a roll of shrink wrap, quickly whips out his filet knife, cuts up the shrink wrap, makes himself a mask, leaving his face pressed in and distorted. He quickly makes a small slit in between his lips so he can breathe. He pulls it off his face, then folds it neatly.

DEXTER

IÕm a big fan of the little things in life.

CUT TO:

INT. POLICE HEADQUARTERS - MIAMI, FL - NEXT DAY

Dex walks into the crowded main lobby, then freezes at the sight of --

THE CHOIR MASTERÕS WIFE

Standing in front of the DESK SERGEANT, crying.

WIFE

I donÕt understand...Do something, please. Put out an Amber alert, put his face on milk cartons -- JUST FIND MY HUSBAND!

DESK SERGEANT

MaÕam, I understand and weÕre trying -- the detectives are looking into everything and when we know...

(patiently)

As we pan off the Sergeant and his voice trails off, we settle --

ON DEXTER

Eyeing the Wife.

DEXTER (V.O.)

IÕm pretty certain I made no mistakes.

Dexter turns, heads toward the briefing room, then feels a hard poke into his shoulder and stops. He spins around and stares into the face of --

SGT. DOAKES

I saw you staring at that woman. What do you care about her?

DEXTER

I donÕt...I was just...

SGT. DOAKES

You like when women cry? You like that? WhatÕs your thing, psycho?

(cuts him off)

DEXTER

Just heading to the briefing room.

SGT. DOAKES

You got no call to be in there, so flee.

(hard)

But Dexter turns, keeps walking --

SGT. DOAKES (CONTÕD)
Hey! IÕm...

With Doakes right behind him, Dexter grabs the briefing room door, pulls it open, and we SEE --

Lt. LaGuerta standing right inside.

SGT. DOAKES (CONTÕD)
(to LaGuerta)
This fucking guy doesnÕt belong. IÕm still waiting for his spatter report on the coke head murders.
(back to Dexter)
Go do that.

LaGuerta shoots them both a look. Dexter retreats.

DEXTER

ItÕs okay. I donÕt want to make anyone unhappy.

Dexter turns, but LaGuerta reaches out, grabs his hand.

LAGUERTA

IÕd love your input and weÕll discuss your case after the meeting -- so how about we get started?

(to Dexter)

He can stay.

And LaGuerta pulls him into --

INT. BRIEFING ROOM - POLICE HEADQUARTERS - MIAMI, FL - SAME

The room is packed with UNIFORMED COPS, DETECTIVES. LaGuerta sashays toward the front of the room. Dexter spins away from Doakes, runs into a COP.

COP #2
(playfully)
Hey, Dex, I got some spatter in my shorts, want a swab?

Dexter smiles at him, looks for a seat, slides past a few more COPS, then SEES --

DEBRA

Sitting alone in the back -- cuts through the crowd -- GRABS a seat next to her, squeezes her knee with encouragement.

DEXTER

You ready?

DEBRA

IÕm gonna shame this bitch.

(confidently)

DEXTER

Just state your case, clean and easy, and youÕll be the hero.

And just then, Masuka slides into a seat next to Deb.

MASUKA

Deb, how about I give you a hundred bucks and you let me put my head between your babaloos?

DEBRA

How about I stomp on your dick?

(right back)

Masuka starts heaving and choking with that laugh and Deb stares at him with a mixture of amazement and disgust.

ON LAGUERTA AT THE PODIUM

LAGUERTA

Okay, settle down. Now, has anyone tracked down our witness?

Mumbles throughout the room. Her face tenses, sheÕs pissed.

LAGUERTA (CONTÕD)
COME ON, PEOPLE -- SOMEONE NEEDS TO FIND SOMETHING HERE.

DEBRA

Uh -- Lt. LaGuerta...

Everyone turns -- LaGuerta looks at Deb, rolls her eyes.

LAGUERTA

Oh, Officer Morgan...DidnÕt recognize you with your clothes on.

Titters all around. Deb hesitates then faces LaGuerta.

DEBRA

I have an idea -- something in a different direction.

LAGUERTA

Then please, share it with us.

(smiles)

An idea? Really?

Deb stands, takes a breath and says --

DEBRA

Cell crystallization --

DEXTER

A little more confidence, please.

(very softly)

LAGUERTA

Excuse me?

(overlapping, to Deb)

DEBRA

...On the last victim. IÕd like to check and see if any refrigerated trucks have been stolen in the last week or so.

SILENCE. Everyone stares at Deb, then --

LAGUERTA

Like ice cream trucks?

(dismissive)

Refrigerated trucks?

They lock eyes. ItÕs a stand-off.

DEXTER (V.O.)

She doesnÕt get it -- None of the brick-heads get it and poor Debra isnÕt making them see it.

DEBRA

No. Not ice cream trucks. A refrigerated vehicle that could cause that kind of tissue damage -- A refrigerated truck that is mobile, so heÕll be harder to catch -- a refrigerated truck, that might give us a lead.

(hard, w/growing anger)

Everyone fidgets uncomfortably in their seats.

LAGUERTA

ThatÕs very interesting -- very creative, but letÕs keep looking for the witness. We know, he or she is out there -- The forensic evidence, the interrupted cut, proves there was an eyewitness -- someone saw something so letÕs concentrate on finding that person. Okay?

(patronizing)

DEBRA

But...

LAGUERTA

Okay, thatÕs all for today.

(beat)

Just keep talking to all your hookers.

(sharp, hard)

And as everyone rises and leaves the room, Dexter looks at LaGuerta who winks at him.

DEXTER (V.O.)

Shit...

But Dexter RACES out of the room and down --

THE HALLWAY

Where he grabs Deb storming away. She spins and out of frustration SCREAMS --

DEBRA

DAMN HER.

Then she PUNCHES Dex hard in his chest.

DEXTER

Ouch...Jesus, Deb...

DEBRA

Sorry...but she made me look like a fucken idiot. SheÕs such a COCK!

DEXTER

Cock?

DEBRA

You know what the fuck I mean. I mean, what the fuck was I supposed to say?

IÕm just there because the Captain said they had to let me in.

DEXTER

But he didnÕt say they had to listen to you.

DEBRA

Right again, so say adios to my career. IÕm going to die a meter maid.

DEXTER

There is another way. Find the truck.

And just then LaGuerta appears.

LAGUERTA

Dexter. My office, please.

(smiling to Dex)

Excuse me.

LaGuerta turns, saunters away. Deb stares at Dex with a look of utter amazement.

DEBRA

What the hell was that? What the fu...You boning her? Oh my God...

And Deb takes off.

DEXTER

NO...Deb, wait...

CUT TO:

INT. LAGUERTAÕS OFFICE - POLICE HEADQUARTERS - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dex has all his pictures of the blood splattered hotel suite on easels. Faces Lt. LaGuerta and Sgt. Doakes.

DEXTER

It has nothing to do with drugs.

SGT. DOAKES

This is a waste of our goddamn time.

LAGUERTA

I think Sgt. Doakes is right.

Dex eyes LaGuerta and Doakes looks like heÕs about to pull his gun. Dex eyes him, then says evenly --

!DEBRA (CONT'D)

DEXTER

ThatÕs who IÕd look for.

(beat)

I read the other reports -- all the other forensic analysis and everyone agrees. The coke-head murders had nothing to do with cocaine. It was a crime of passion. The murderer came there to kill the woman -- not the dealer. He did him quick and got him out of the way but he sure as hell took his sweet time slicing up that lady and you donÕt do that unless you have a long personal relationship with someone -- probably an ex-boyfriend.

LAGUERTA

Okay...ItÕs a bit of a push, but Sgt, you should check it out anyway.

SGT. DOAKES

IÕm watching you, motherfucker.

(stares at Dexter)

And as we push into DexterÕs face, we HEAR the CRACK of thunder, and we --

CUT TO:

EXT. BAYWATER CONDO DEVELOPMENT SITE - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter drives through the pouring rain, then turns onto a construction site bordering the bay -- passes a damaged sign that reads ÒBaywater Condominiums.Ó

The land has been cleared of all trees and a series of half built two-story condoÕs sit abandoned in their place.

DEXTER (V.O.)

Another huge development that was going to improve all of our lives by turning trees and animals into cement and old people from New Jersey. But this place ran out of money -- stalled, inert, lifeless.

Dexter stops his car behind a large pile of old brick and timber. After a beat, he slips silently out of his car, walks slowly toward a half-built condo.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
JaworskiÕs been coming here for weeks...likes to steal all the copper wire. Good money in that.
(beat)
No security guards. ThatÕs good.

CUT TO:

EXT. HALF-BUILT CONDO - MIAMI, FL - LATER

!SECOND STORY WINDOW P.O.V.

And through the sheets of rain we SEE --

Jaworski pull up in his pickup, get out, a large wrench in his hand. He steps through the puddles and heads into the building.

INT. HALF-BUILT CONDO - MIAMI, FL - SAME

!MOVING P.O.V.

And we see Jaworski slowly head up the stairs, walk down the hallway, then disappear into a second story room.

!DOORWAY P.O.V.

And we see Jaworski, struggling with a large piece of copper tubing, turning his wrench, over and over until the tubing is finally freed.

Sweating, Jaworski, picks up a pile of tubing, cradles it in his arms, heads for the door and as soon as he steps into the doorway, he stops -- FREEZES.

SEES a picture of Jane Saunders pinned to the wall.

Then in a FLASH --

Dexter, wearing a rubber apron over his clothes and his face all pressed and distorted from that shrink wrap mask is behind him -- his filet knife pressed into JaworskiÕs neck.

DEXTER

DonÕt move and donÕt make a sound.

JAWORSKI

Hey, wait a...

And with that, Dexter pulls a syringe out of his pocket, plunges the needle deep into JaworskiÕs neck and Jaworski crumbles to the ground.

CUT TO:

INT. LARGE ROOM - HALF-BUILT CONDO - MIAMI, FL - LATER

JaworskiÕs naked body is shrink wrapped down over a stack of sheet rock. Duct tape stretched across his mouth.

Next to him is a small table covered with a gleaming, lethal set of filet knives of various shapes and sizes.

Dexter peels the mask off his face, leans over Jaworski and stares into his eyes.

DEXTER

LetÕs talk.

Jaworski struggles, shakes his head and Dexter rips the duct tape off his face.

JAWORSKI

Fuck...

(pained)

DEXTER

Talk.

JAWORSKI

What? What do you mean?

(eyes wild with fear)

DEXTER

I think you know what I mean.

JAWORSKI

No.

And with that, Dexter very casually and smoothly, draws the scalpel across JaworskiÕs cheek.

JAWORSKI (CONTÕD)
Oh, God...

DEXTER

Now talk to me about Jane Saunders.

(tight, hard)

Beat. Then Dexter lifts the scalpel again.

JAWORSKI

I did her.

(beat)

Okay...okay...

(weakly)

DEXTER

How?

Beat.

JAWORSKI

But IÕm not sorry.

(and then)

In a movie -- snuff film.

DEXTER

Of course not. And now, IÕm not sorry, either.

And with that, Dexter lifts up his knife and we --

CUT TO:

INT. LARGE ROOM - HALF-BUILT CONDO - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter cleans up, wipes his knife clean, whips the rubber apron off his body, and as he shakes his gloves off into his tote bag -- he suddenly stops, looks down, reaches into his pants pocket and pulls out his vibrating cell phone.

DEXTER

Hello?

(pleasantly)

SMASH CUT TO:

INT. RITAÕS HOUSE - MIAMI, FL - SAME

Rita has the phone pressed hard against her ear.

RITA

IÕm sorry...I mean, IÕm sorry about the other night, but uh...Well, uh, Dex -- I really need to see you, so can you --- I mean, can you come by tonight -- just for, you know -- like a little while. IÕm really...What are you doing now?

DEXTER

Looks at all the white Hefty garbage bags filled with bits and pieces of Jaworksi neatly stacked in a pile across the room.

DEXTER

Okay, bye.

(beat)

Just finishing up a little project, but IÕll try to come by later.

He hangs up, then lifts a double layered glass slide of blood out of his shirt pocket, stares at it, smiles.

CUT TO:

EXT/INT. DEXTERÕS CIVIC - BISCAYNE BLVD - MIAMI, FL - SAME

Dexter drives in the pouring rain down Biscayne Blvd --

DEXTER (V.O.)

I feel a lot better now. Always do afterwards. One less amateur film maker polluting the internet.

Then out of the corner of his eye, he SEES --

A REFRIGERATED TRUCK

Barreling down a side street. DexterÕs shocked -- whips his head around.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
No...CanÕt be.

But Dex makes a quick U-turn, almost fishtails, twisting and turning then heads down that side street where we SEE --

THE TRUCK

Speeding down one block after another.

DEXTER

Nails the gas, but his Civic struggles to keep up.

THE TRUCK

Now a few blocks away, makes a sharp right.

DEXTER

Follows, but the light up ahead turns red and as Dexter comes to a stop, he watches --

THE TRUCK

Turn onto the causeway and disappear.

DEXTER

Waits impatiently for the light to turn. Red...red...red... still red, then finally it turns green and Dexter floors it.

THE CIVIC

Screeches forward, turns onto the causeway, races down the highway, then SEES --

THE TRUCK

RACING BACK TOWARD DEXTER -- and itÕs getting closer, closer.

DEXTER

Turns white, then grips the wheel tighter and as he gets closer to the oncoming truck, he sees --

THE DRIVERÕS ARM

Pop out of the driverÕs side window and the DriverÕs hand is holding something very large.

THE TRUCK AND THE CAR

Are getting closer...closer and right before they collide --

THE TRUCK

Swerves and the Driver throws --

A SEVERED HEAD

Right into DexterÕs windshield. The glass SHATTERS and...

DEXTERÕS HORRIFIED

SLAMS on the brakes and --

THE HEAD

Rolls off the hood, BOUNCES onto the wet causeway and starts rolling and skipping, heading straight toward the edge of the road and coming dangerously close to falling into the water below.

DEXTER

Jumps out of the car, RACES after the rolling head, catches up to it, bends down and GRABS IT --

But the rain soaked, bloodless-head SLIPS through his fingers and scoots away from him. Then with a burst of energy, Dexter lunges -- TACKLES that head like a football and pulls it in close and tight with his hands.

He takes a couple of deep breaths, rises to his feet and...

Standing alone in the middle of the empty road, and with the rain still pouring down on him, Dexter lifts the head up, looks into her eyes.

CUT TO:

EXT. DEXTERÕS CIVIC - THE CAUSEWAY - MIAMI, FL - LATER

The rain has stopped and Dexter sits on the hood of his car, watching the PARAMEDICS gently roll the head off the causeway, onto a stretcher, then lift the stretcher and carry it into an ambulance. Dexter waves --

DEXTER

Bye, bye.

Dex looks across the street at --

Sgt. Doakes and Debra leaning against an unmarked police car and Debra smiles wide, gives him a thumbs up and just then --

LaGuertaÕs car pulls up, headlights momentarily blinding Dexter.

He shields his eyes, then after a beat, he sees LaGuerta get out of her car, and lock eyes with --

Deb who smirks at her, then turns, nods to Doakes. They both get into the unmarked car and take off.

LaGuerta shakes her head, SLAMS her door shut and walks towards Dexter.

LAGUERTA

You okay?

Lt. LaGuerta approaches. Dexter eyes her then says wryly.

DEXTER

What a way to get a head.

LAGUERTA

Cute...

(smiles)

LaGuerta looks around, then takes a step towards him.

LAGUERTA (CONTÕD)
So did you see the driver of the truck?

DEXTER

Nope.

LAGUERTA

But you didnÕt see the driver?

(off his nod)

You sure it was a refrigerated truck?

DEXTER

Nope.

LAGUERTA

And youÕre sure it was a refrigerated truck?

DEXTER

No question.

LAGUERTA

You seem pretty certain.

She steps in even closer.

DEXTER

Certain is my middle name.

LAGUERTA

I like a confident man.

(seductively)

And she presses her tempting, elegant body against his body.

LAGUERTA (CONTÕD)
Nice job on the coke head murders. Doakes picked up the killer. It was her boyfriend. But Doakes still hates you.

Her hand drops down, starts massaging his thigh.

LAGUERTA (CONTÕD)
HowÕd you get so smart, Dexter?

She runs her hands over his chest, then through his hair.

LAGUERTA (CONTÕD)
And you always wear such nice clothes.

DEXTER

Lt, I donÕt think...

She presses harder against him, whispers seductively --

LAGUERTA

Shhhh...

DEXTER

No, Lt...not here.

LAGUERTA

ThatÕs right, not here. My place.

And as she leans in for the kiss, Dexter quickly turns his face away, scoots to the side and...LaGuerta falls forward, hitting the car hard.

DEXTER

Lt...IÕm so, so sorry.

(horrified)

LaGuerta rights herself, whips around -- venom in her eyes.

LAGUERTA

You son-of-a-bitch.

DEXTER

No...Lt...Please, listen...I just had a head thrown at me and IÕm feeling a little out of sorts and IÕm afraid I might disappoint you.

They lock eyes. Dexter smiles wide and bright and LaGuerta finally buys it -- smiles back.

LAGUERTA

Okay, some other time...When youÕre less traumatized.

They lock eyes, Dexter nods, then ducks into his car and drives off.

CUT TO:

EXT. RITAÕS HOUSE - MIAMI, FL - LATER

Dexter stands in front of RitaÕs door, presses the bell. Ding, dong, ding, dong. The door swings open and Dexter SEES Rita bundled up in her robe.

After a beat --

RITA

I sent the kids next door.

(nervously)

DEXTER

Okay.

(unsure)

Beat.

RITA

Would you like to come in?

DEXTER

Okay.

And he steps --

INT. RITAÕS HOUSE - MIAMI, FL - SAME

Dexter follows Rita into the living room -- she turns, faces him.

RITA

I donÕt want to lose you, Dex.

DEXTER

Okay...Sure...

RITA

And I want you...

And with that, she opens her robe and shyly shows Dexter the simple but elegant nightgown sheÕs wearing underneath.

RITA (CONTÕD)
(nervously)
Dex...I want to make love to you.

DEXTER

Oh, okay, thanks.

And Rita reaches out, slowly pulls him close. They start to kiss, then she stops, pulls back --

RITA

DonÕt worry, the DoctorÕs cleared up that little problem I had.

DEXTER

Okay, thatÕs...thatÕs good.

(hesitantly)

And as they begin making love and the GROANING starts, we --

CUT TO:

INT. DEXTERÕS APARTMENT - COCONUT GROVE, FL - MORNING

Dexter steps inside, closes the door.

DEXTER (V.O.)

Wow. Sex. How did that happen? But she seemed pleased so I guess I didnÕt disappoint her.

He looks around the room, all seems fine and he heads into --

THE DARK KITCHEN

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
But thatÕs because I donÕt care, and chances are if you donÕt care about something, youÕll be better at it.

He flips on the light --

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
Performance anxiety must be a bitch.

And then he SEES --

A BARBIE DOLLÕS HEAD

Scotched taped and hanging by its hair on the refrigerator door and Dexter FREEZES -- stares at the head. HeÕs clearly tense, unnerved.

Dexter slowly approaches the refrigerator, touches the Barbie head and as it swings gently back and forth, he slowly opens the freezer door and inside he finds --

THE BARBIE DOLL BODY PARTS

Neatly stacked and tied together with little pink ribbons -- just like the bloodless bodies, sans the little pink ribbons.

After a beat, DexterÕs body relaxes --

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
I suppose I should be upset, even feel violated, but IÕm not.

And then he notices --

A SMALL VANITY MIRROR

Stuck in one of BarbieÕs hands. He pulls the tiny mirror out of the dollÕs hand, stares into it. And we see little fragmented images of DexterÕs face off the mirror.

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
No...In fact, I think this is a friendly message -- Kind of like, ÔHey, want to play?Õ

Dex puts the mirror down, closes the freezer door, and as he looks down at the little Barbie head swinging on the refrigerator door again, we --

FREEZE ON DEXTERÕS SMILING FACE

DEXTER (V.O.) (CONTÕD)
And yes, I want to play...I really, really do.

And on that, we --

FADE TO:

BLACK

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