Bethlehem by David Fulmer | Script Revolution




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"It's a Wonderful Life" with random gunfire and sex on a dining room table.

BETHLEHEM by David Fulmer
Snow falls on Christmas Eve for the first time in seven years and Joe Kelly thinks his moment has finally come. It’s not just the weather; a few weeks earlier, he received the stunning word that a certain movie star’s production company offered to option his first, forgotten novel. The evidence of a dream has come true, in the form of a fat check, has just arrived.
Joe has managed to keep the amazing news secret from his wife Mariel and their two children, but as night falls, he’s ready to spring the surprise, remake his standing as a hopeless dreamer, revive his marriage, and change their lives forever. The final piece of his happy plan is the purchase of a rare pendant, an antique called an Epiphany Star that has a special meaning for Mariel but that he could never afford.
Meanwhile, across town, Nicole Weaver is praying that Christmas will arrive without any trouble for her and her daughter Malikah from the crazed mother of Terry, the boyfriend she met in rehab. At the same time, Franklin Callum, the reverend of a storefront church, heads out on a mission to transport souls who have lost their way in the cold and dark to shelter.
Joe brings the Epiphany Star home to begin the celebration of his good luck and the holiday. That luck changes in a raw shock when he gets there and finds Mariel in the lurid embrace of another man. Devastated in what was going to be a moment of glory, he escapes the house and sets out on a long night’s journey.
At his first stop, a lonely tavern, he encounters a woman he knew in high school. She invites him back to her apartment. The heat rises and he is tempted to stay when an odd happenstance changes his mind and he leaves her to venture on. At the house across town, a furious argument ends with Terry’s mother casting Nicole and Janelle out into the frigid night.
Joe gets lost, travels down the wrong street, and is accosted by two muggers. It’s turning mean when Reverend Callum appears to interrupt the crime and carry Joe back to his humble church where he finds quiet sanctuary − until the phone rings, that is, and the tale takes another turn. It’s Nicole calling, desperate for help.
Joe drives the church van to collect them, but the rescue is complicated when Joe gets into a scuffle with Terry, pouring his fury over his wife’s betrayal on the sick wreck of a junkie. He carries Danielle and Amber to a shelter, but when he sees what a bad, sad scene it is, insists they leave with him. They arrive back at the church to find that the reverend is not pleased. He warns Joe that he’s now responsible for mother and child. After a bit of soul-searching, Joe decides to carry them – and the reverend – to his house for Christmas morning.
They’ve just begun this last leg of the night’s journey when violence erupts, and Joe, Reverend Callum, Nicole, and Janelle find themselves bound together in a way none of them ever imagined.

Submitted: January 31, 2018
Last Updated: January 31, 2018
Times Downloaded: 3
Last Downloaded: June 10, 2019

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David Fulmer's picture

The Writer: David Fulmer

As the author of nine novels, one novella, and five scripts, David Fulmer has won the Shamus Award and a Benjamin Franklin Award and has been nominated for a LA Times Book Prize, a Barry Award, the Falcon Award, and the Shamus Award for Best Novel. His novels have been selected for numerous “Best of” lists, including New York Magazine’s “Best Novels You’ve Never Read” and Atlanta Magazine’s “Best of the Shelf,” and have received superlative reviews from, among others, The New York Times, USA Today, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Washington Post, The Times Picayune, The Boston Globe, Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, and The Christian Science Monitor. His next novel, Eclipse Alley, to be... Go to bio
Agency: ICM
Agent: RIch Green

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