Encore: A Cinema Finis Story - Prologue


 "It's so bright!!!", the Theater Manager thought to himself as he looked at the new carpet, seat cushions, curtain and walls of the Theater.  

     It was various shades of red interspersed with patterns of black, yellow and a myriad of others. The paint on the steps between the rows of seats was newly applied as well and had darkness to it that reminded him of blood.  As he looked around he realized that all the shades of red reminded him of blood.  Maybe he always thought that, or maybe he hadn't.  He shook the thought from his mind only to have a new one enter.

     The theater had been about to go bankrupt but for the man who now approached him from the balcony doorway where he stood surveying the newly upholstered and painted interior.  Times had changed, people had changed.  The thrill of the movies had been lost in recent years...along with so many other things and he had been resigned to the fact the his theater was about to go under and could not be saved.  But two weeks ago that had all changed.  The day before the theater was about to close for good a stranger named Mr. Legion had appeared in the office with an offer.  He had an interested group of investors and they were prepared to give an influx of much needed funds to save and restore the theater. 
     "In exchange for what?"  he had asked dubiously.  It turned out that all that would  be asked of him was to allow all of the upgrades and renovations be left to them to decide.  All he had to do was keep running the theater like had always done.  It sounded too good to be true.  His theater would have an encore after all  had seemed so hopeless
     "My partners will be coming by in turn to offer their guidance and expertise.  We will provide all of the materials and labor.  You need only provide us this decrepit and dying enterprise for us to rebuild.  Call it a good deed...we like to spread good karma and we will help to bring the people back.  Lines will reappear outside of your building again my good sir...and most importantly...people of all kinds will have a place to go...together...to be entertained.  A place that will cater to the individual...and the group.  If it sounds to good to be true...IT IS!"  Mr. Legion cried with gusto and excitement.  The Manager felt overwhelmed with excitement...or maybe it was fear.  There was no choice really, or at least he felt like he had no choice...or maybe he had.  Regardless he had agreed to the terms.  The only other thing that was part of the bargain was that the name of the theater would be changed and they would inform him of the name in due time.

     That had been two weeks ago and since then he had met only one other of Mr. Legion's partners.  A  Mr. Samael who had coordinated the color upgrades in the main theater.  Every change he had made be it color or placement, size or shape seemed to be the best and most obvious choice available and his speech and delivery filled The Manager with confidence and appreciation for Mr. Samael's keen eye.  He had also been the one to leave The Manager with the news that the new theater name had been chosen.
     "We have the name and it is a good name." he had stated apropos of nothing.  "A very good name."  And The Manager knew that is was so.  

As the memory faded Mr. Legion had now arrived from his short walk through the balcony doorway emerging out of a bright white light emanating from what appeared to be the outside light.    The Manager had not recalled a doorway there before...or maybe he did.  The door slowly closed of it's own accord revealing the striking angular features of Mr. Legion
     "I have the name for you sir and it will soon shine in lights above this theater, calling one and calling all."  he cried with an excitement that bellied his speech.  He put his arm around The Manager and they both looked out from the balcony across the seats below and stared at the newly installed and drawn blood red curtain.  Mr. Legion took a deep breath and calmly said.....

     "Cinema Finis"


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