Enron by Lucy Prebble

Act 2


Enron commercial with ethereal voices singing 'Why?'

Scene 1

Fastow's lair where LJM has been fully and complexly constructed, like a large, supportive web.
Among the shadows there are strange movements going on. The Raptors scuttle about. Not entirely human sounds. In the centre, Fastow.
The tiny red box is safely put away, buried. We can see it throb. The Raptors creep eerily around in the shadows.
Skilling enters. The Raptors hide.
Fastow Jeff! Everything's peachy.
Fastow You won't believe the investment I got us. You wanted LJM to look official. Well, I've got fifteen million from J.P. Morgan, ten million Credit Suisse, five million from Merrill, everyone wants in with LJM –
Two more figures emerge from the shadows: it is the Lehman Brothers.
Fastow Oh, wait a second – it's the fucking Lehman Brothers. What do you guys want?
Fastow I'm busy here, what the fuck d'you want?
Fastow No, but that's the thing, Jeff. I can! They're all so desperate to be seen alongside Enron. And who's Enron's CFO? Check it out.
Fastow For Enron?
Fastow Way I see it, if I give you a contract worth tens of millions of dollars, least you can do is invest in a side project I got going on. Course Enron could always take its business elsewhere –
Fastow Let's start small, how 'bout ten million?
The Lehman Brothers give Fastow the money.
Fastow Good job, fellas!
The conjoined figures struggle to turn round in unison, both pulling in opposite directions. Eventually, they manage it.
Fastow Let me.
Skilling nods graciously.
Fastow If you rated us Strong Buy, more people would invest in Enron, right?
Fastow And if more people invest in Enron, we can finance more projects, which makes Enron stronger and therefore –
Fastow / A Strong Buy! See how it makes sense now?Now, get the fuck out before I change my mind.
The Lehman Brothers slink out.
Fastow I know! I think we've found the future of business … by accident.
Fastow Nothing.
Fastow Don't worry about it.
Skilling goes to explore. One of the Raptors approaches Skilling to check him out. It smells him cautiously.
Fastow The Raptors. You like 'em? They like you.
Fastow These sort of entities, we could never have them publicly at Enron, but LJM doesn't need to show its books. So we can … experiment here.
He feeds one of them a dollar bill.
Fastow Yes! And debt's just money. All money is debt.
Fastow If the bank gives you money, you owe them. You put money in the bank, they owe you.All money is debt. It's just how you present it.
The Raptors gain confidence at this and play with Skilling a little.
Fastow OK. Well, this one here, is dealing with Broadband. This one's taking care of Video On Demand while we set it up. And that one … that one's consuming all the fucking debt coming out of that rusting hulk of a power plant in Dabhol.
Fastow You gotta put a stop to all that.
Fastow A man's got a right to his balls.
Fastow He has to.
Fastow Her division's numbers?
Fastow I'd be surprised if there was nothing untoward. I mean, everybody … you know.Beat.You want me to take a look?
Fastow Well, sure, I mean. I can tell clever numbers. I'm the king of 'em!
Skilling strokes a Raptor.

Scene 2: The Purge

One of the Raptors runs towards Roe and chases her out of the building.
After a moment, Lay enters Skilling's office, looking pained.
Lay gives him one anyway.
Lay bows his head in prayer, his hands together. He closes his eyes. Skilling copies him.
After a few moments, Lay has not spoken. Skilling opens his eyes. He watches Lay, not sure what to do.
He watches Lay, fascinated.
After a little while, Lay stops his silent prayers and raises his head. Skilling immediately tries to bow his to make it look like he hadn't stopped.
Beat. Lay touches Skilling on the shoulder. It's a paternal, almost saintly action, but takes Skilling by surprise.
He drifts off. Pause. Skilling picks up the cigar left him.

Scene 3: Rooftop

Roe is having a last cigarette outside on the rooftop/terrace of the Enron building.
Skilling comes out.
Roe has been crying. She hastily attempts to cover any sign of her tears.
She stubs her cigarette out. She leaves him.
His Daughter blows bubbles somewhere on stage.
Skilling turns to his Daughter but she has disappeared, leaving only bubbles in her wake.

Scene 4: The American Spirit

Skilling gives a speech to Employees.

Scene 5: Andy's Lair Of LJM

Skilling enters. Fastow is with the Raptors watching the election results roll in.
Fastow Sure. We're having a party.
Fastow turns round. He has a bottle of champagne. They all stare at the screen.
An electoral map of the United States on screen:ALABAMA: TOO CLOSE TO CALL.
Fastow Hey, it's early.
Fastow Hey, they're calling my baby – !It's blue.NEW JERSEY: CALLED FOR GORE.+ 15.
Fastow Goddamn you, New Jersey. I love you, but you break my fucking heart. That's my cousins, there.
Fastow Lone Star! It's red.TEXAS: CALLED FOR BUSH.+ 32.
Fastow Come on!
Fastow Surprise!
Fastow No.
Fastow What about Colorado, we might get Colorado.
Fastow Hey, come on, we've had eight years of this shit, we'll have eight more –
Fastow Come on, man – scares you?! I've seen you nearly die on a quad bike just to see what it feels like to nearly die –
Fastow Have a little faith.
Fastow (shock) You, personally?I got money – I can –
Fastow No, no, I … We'll get through this.
Fastow Pay them in stock, with our stock price –
Fastow No, it can't. This whole set-up is founded on / the stock price –
Fastow Are you saying it's going down?
Fastow That's what I'm saying.
Fastow I'm trying to make it work here!
Fastow You need capital. You need cash. One, two, three?
Fastow Four million I can find …
Skilling stares at him.
Fastow You need four billion dollars? Cash?!
Fastow That's not what I do. This is all … this is structured finance. This is how it looks … I can't make real money just appear.
Fastow Wait, look –Screens go red.RECOUNT: FLORIDA CALLED FOR BUSH.
Fastow If you need actual capital …
Fastow If you need cash coming in the door, actual cash, then you need to sell something real …
Fastow Fox says yes!
Fastow No!
Fastow Well, they gotta decide.
Fastow Someone has to call this.
Fastow They can't do this. If there's one thing this country won't stand for it's ambiguity.Flicking through channels.Who's won? who's / won?!
Just then, Lay enters, hanging up on a phone call. He is deliberately oblivious to the strange, exaggerated world of LJM. The Raptors scuttle away.
Skilling is clutching his stomach.
Skilling falls to his knees with the relief.
Fastow There's your cash!
Lay grins.
Video footage of George W. Bush being sworn in as President of the United States.

Scene 6: Texas Vs California

The floor is flooded with Traders.
During the following, Traders are manipulating California's electricity market by moving energy around. It should be tremendous fun, extremely fast, physical and overlap is encouraged.
They all look.
News reports begin playing between and underneath the traders. They should overlap as appropriate.
Short physical sequence.
Physical sequence.
He hangs up the phone.
Physical sequence.
A climax of sound and activity is being reached. It builds and builds.
Everyone and everything is at fever pitch, yelling and encouraging.
A climax.
Every light in the world seems to go out.
Utter darkness everywhere. For a shade longer than is comfortable.
And then …
Nothing but the light from a small doorway.
In front of the light of the doorway, a man comes into view. It is the short, homuncular figure of Ken Lay. A suited man comes on stage and goes through the door, first shaking Lay's hand.
Arnold Schwarzenegger steps into the meeting, followed by Lay.
The door closes.

Scene 7: Skilling's Office

Skilling is in a meeting with the Lawyer.
The red box throbs from deep underneath.
A large Enron Security Officer appears in Skilling's doorway.
Skilling looks dishevelled and highly strung.
The Lawyer leaves.
The Security Officer checks around the office surfaces.
The Security Officer gets down on the floor too. He copies Skilling who puts his ear to floor. They listen, lying on the floor together.
They listen.
Skilling's head is leaning on his wrist with his watch on. He gets up, embarrassed.
They laugh.
Skilling nods.
Security Officer leaves.
Skilling's intercom beeps.

Scene 8: Andy's Lair

Skilling enters Fastow's shady lair, all anxiety.
The Raptors stay visible. Two have grown very bold now – fast and aggressive. One of them is weak and sickly, the other two flank it to protect it.
Skilling approaches to pet them and one of the strong Raptors is aggressive. He backs off. It follows him and pins him. Skilling is deeply unnerved by them.
Fastow enters.
He tazers a Raptor to protect Skilling. It falls down, ultimately unharmed. The others back off.
Fastow Hey.
Fastow Something's spooked 'em.
Fastow It's sick. I don't know. Maybe I gave it too much.
Fastow Hmm? Oh, of the debt, Jeff.
Fastow No. I don't know.
He tries to look at and comfort the injured Raptor.
The Raptors seem to hear him and snap around, maybe moving towards Fastow for support.
Fastow Jeff?!
Fastow We can't. They're consuming a billion dollars' worth of debt.
Fastow What's in New York?
Fastow A reporter wants to talk to me!
Fastow What do you mean, it's not a positive article?!
Fastow Fuck them! We don't have to –
Fastow But we are a black box, Jeff.
Fastow I don't want to leave LJM.
Fastow Please don't make me go.
Fastow Jeff, I'm at my best here.
Fastow I created LJM.
Fastow What am I going to say?
Fastow Right.
Fastow What if they do want trouble? I mean, they're a magazine. What if they take a good look, what if they take a really close look and they come to the conclusion that everything's just hedged against our own stock –
Fastow What if they look and they see that underneath there's nothing actually there –
Fastow OK, OK! I'll go! I'll just take all the paperwork. Throw information at them. Bury them / in it.
As Skilling is at his most manic and the Raptors are circling, Ken Lay enters.
Lay is absolutely oblivious to the Raptors, the odd environment and the men's turmoil. He holds two scraps of material.
He holds the choices up.
Both men stare at him. The Raptors stare at him.
Fastow There's a loss of confidence. I think. Going on.
Fastow I mean, I was only doing what I was asked to do.
Lay doesn't look at the Raptors or anything except the material swatches and sometimes Skilling.
Skilling, desperately buying into the charade, points at one. Lay nods, satisfied and lowers the swatches.
Skilling, dead-eyed, gets ushered off by Lay.
Fastow So I'll just do … what you aked me to then, Jeff, yeah?
Lay turns back, eyes the minion.
Fastow I can – I'll take care of it, Mr Lay.
He leaves.
Left alone with his creations, Fastow rallies himself to do his master's bidding. He eyes the Raptors.
Fastow I'm sorry, girls. I gotta take you off the books.
He destroys the Raptors.
Fastow I don't care what they say about the company. As long as they don't make me look bad.
He torches LJM.

Scene 9: The Asshole

Skilling climbs stairs like a man on his way to the gallows, unkempt and addled.
He eyes the stock price.
As he goes up, he notices his presence pushing the stock price up a very little bit.
This spurs Skilling on.
As they go up, Enron Analysts and Journalists emerge from everywhere to listen to the conference call.
Silence. Skilling exhales.
There is utter silence as everyone realises what he just said to an important stock analyst.
Then suddenly there is frenetic activity.
The Analysts all get on their phones and BlackBerries to their banks and brokerage firms
The Analysts have taken themselves off, hurrying back to their marketplace hubs, a sea change in the offing.
But their effects are already painfully clear on the stock price, which is free-falling.
A spotlight on Skilling alone, unsupported. Just him and his representation of his self-worth, the stock price.
Skilling approaches it desperately, trying to regain former glories.
He ends, his arms outstretched, crucifying himself before the market.
The blocks beneath where Skilling was standing are removed by Analysts and Brokers as shares continue to be sold and the company weakens.
A sour, tuneless version of the 'Enron' barbershop quartet from earlier plays.

Scene 10: Private Meeting

Sheryl Sloman and Ken Lay are in a meeting with Skilling.
This seems to affect him deeply.
Skilling leaves.
With a reassuring squeeze of her arm, Lay stalks off, leaving Sloman thoughtful.
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