A/N: We were watching the movie (1979, directed by Michael Crichton) and were horribly disappointed when we reached the end to find that the best part of the story (in our humble opinions) had been butchered and left out. So…this how we think it should have ended. It starts right after the train pulls into Folkestone.

DISCLAIMER: There are direct quotes from Michael Crichton's novel, The Great Train Robbery. Any parallels are deliberate and we give credit to him where his credit is due.

Pierce walks toward carriage / Miriam smiling. CUT FROM MED CLOSE UP MIRIAM TO MED CLOSE UP PIERCE; ZOOM/PAN RIGHT BOTH IN FRAME. Pierce approaches from the left. Others in background. Pierce stops for no apparent reason. MED CLOSE UP: Pierce and Henry.

HENRY: I say, my boy, that's quite some woman you introduced me to.

PIERCE (looking off camera to MIRIAM): Oh, yes, I suppose she was. (beat, still looking at her) How was your trip?

HENRY: Quite pleasant: after all, we – my God, what is that awful smell? (sniffs air, wrinkles nose)

PIERCE: Oh, that? (glances down at clothes) I have a bit of a weak stomach; the motion aggravates it.

HENRY (disdainfully, backing up slowly, wrinkles nose): I'm, uh, sorry to hear that. (starts edging away) Sorry. I must be going.

He edges out of the frame.. PAN BACK TRACKING SHOT PIERCE TO MIRIAM. FADE as the carriage pulls away.

SCENE: a busy London street. Agar following a well-dressed woman, police officer (crusher) following Agar (unknown by Agar himself). Agar reaches for the lady's purse [SHOT FROM BEHIND THE THREE OF THEM] with his right hand. Crusher's right hand on Agar's left shoulder, spins him around.

AGAR (surprised look): Wha–

CRUSHER: I think you'd better come with me, sir.

FADE OUT, BACK IN. Interior of a police station, Agar interrogated.

EDWARD HARRANBY (flipping through a thick folder): Thievery, unarmed robbery, petty theft – well, you must know every feasible way to life someone's wallet, Mr. Agar. Your record certainly speaks for itself.

AGAR (confused): Sir?

HARRANBY: Are you aware that the penalty for repeated larceny is deportation to the penal colony of New South Wales?

AGAR (nervous, fidgeting with his hands, cracking knuckles): Oh? Well, I um, you see, I was…Well, it wasn't really larceny, you know. A few pence here and there, perhaps, but not theft, per se.

HARRANBY: Mr. Agar, in the eyes of the law, stealing is stealing, whether it is of a few pence or a few million pounds – (quieter) like that damned Crimean gold shipment scam.

AGAR (looks up abruptly): The Crimean gold shipment scam, sir? The one where –

HARRANBY: Yes, that one. It seems all of England knows of the theft but no one actually knows what happened.

AGAR (relaxed but calculating): That's curious, sir.

HARRANBY: Why curious, Mr. Agar?

AGAR (steeples fingers, carelessly, offhandedly): I just might happen to know something about that.


SCENE: A gentlemen's club. Indoors. Hazy from cigar smoke. Card tables, pool tables, bar. Pierce holding a glass of scotch, talking to Burgess. MED CLOSE UP Pierce and Burgess.

PIERCE: How is your wife these days?

BURGESS: Not well, sir. We're all a bit stressed, what with my recent sacking and all.

PIERCE (low voice): You'll get the money soon.

BURGESS: You've done it, then? It's taken awhile.

PIERCE: Wired and properly transferred to a variety of banks, my friend.

Shrill police whistles. Man scrambles from card table amidst shouts and chaos. Burgess looks surprised.

BURGESS: What the devil…?

WIDE SHOT, door kicked open; two officers, Harranby, Agar enter. Harranby smirks briefly, remains cold and professional. MED CLOSE UP: Pierce leans on wall in left edge of frame, Harranby enters right.

HARRANBY: You are Edward Pierce, the man also known as John Simms?


SHOT FACING Pierce and Burgess. Two officers walk into frame, grab Pierce's right arm, Burgess's left. CLOSE UP Pierce and Barker #1.

BARKER #1 (leaning into Pierce, softly): Come along quietly, or take a bit of lead for your trouble.

Barker leads Pierce towards the door. MED CLOSE ON Agar and Pierce, profiled, facing each other.

PIERCE (calmly): Turned nose on me, did you?

AGAR can't look him in the eyes.

PIERCE: Doesn't matter. I've thought of this as well, you know.

AGAR (blurting uncomfortably): I had no choice!

PIERCE (shrugs, offhandedly): You'll lose your share.


SCENE: Harranby's office. Harranby at his desk. SHOTS SWITCHING FROM CLOSE UPS OF Pierce and Harranby.

HARRANBY (calmly): Where is the woman called Miriam?

PIERCE: I don't know.

HARRANBY (getting frustrated): Where is Miriam?

PIERCE: I don't know.

HARRANBY (extremely angry): Where is Miriam?

PIERCE (still calm): I don't know.

HARRANBY (sighs, visibly collects himself): Then where is the money?

PIERCE: I don't know.

HARRANBY: There seems to be an awful lot of things you do not know.


FADE OUT, IN. EVERYTING IS THE SAME but Pierce's beard has grown. (A month later).

HARRANBY (calmly): Where is the woman called Miriam?

PIERCE: I don't know.

HARRANBY (getting frustrated): Where is Miriam?

PIERCE: I don't know.

HARRANBY (extremely angry): Where is Miriam?

PIERCE (still calm): I don't know.

HARRANBY (sighs, visibly collects himself): Then where is the money?

PIERCE: I don't know.

FADE OUT, IN. EVERYTING IS THE SAME but Pierce's beard has grown further and he is more disheveled in physical appearance.

HARRANBY (calmly): Where is the woman called Miriam?

PIERCE: I do not know.

HARRANBY: Where, I repeat, is the womanMiriam?

PIERCE: I do not know.

HARRANBY: Where is the woman Miriam?

PIERCE: I do not know.

HARRANBY: Then where is the money?

PIERCE (nonchalantly): In a crypt, in St. John's wood.

HARRANBY: Where – I beg your pardon?

PIERCE: The money. A crypt, in St. John's wood.

HARRANBY (tiredly): And why have you not come forth with this information before?

PIERCE (shrugs): I did not want to.

FADE TO CRYPT. Noontime, man with axe. He breaks the vault open. CLOSE UP gaping, empty hole. A pair of eyes raises eyebrows at Harranby, who looks away. FADE to Harranby's office.

HARRANBY: Would it interest you to learn, Mr. Pierce, that the crypt you directed us to was empty?

PIERCE (unconcerned): Why, the fools must have robbed me.

HARRANBY: Does this concern you?

PIERCE: No, it's just my ill luck. (beat) And yours.

BLACKOUT, a courtroom. Pierce on witness stand.

PROSECUTOR: You, Edward Pierce, sometimes known as John Simms, are accused of high theft from Her Majesty; namely £150,000 of gold to be shipped as part of the Crimean war effort. How do you plead?

PIERCE: Guilty.

PROSECUTOR: Jury, I present you with the testimonies of Messrs. Agar, Trent, Fowler, and the rail guard on duty. I leave you to your decision.

JUDGE: Mr. Pierce, the court would like to know your motive; what made you commit this heinous crime?

PIERCE: I wanted the money.

[Unrest in courtroom]

PROSECUTOR: Mr. Pierce, I put it to you directly: did you never feel, at any time, some sense of impropriety, some recognition of misconduct, some comprehension of unlawful behavings, some moral misgivings, in the performance of these various criminal acts?

PIERCE: I do not understand the question.

JUDGE: No, I don't suppose you would.


NARRATOR: In 1857, Burgess was sentenced to Marshalsea prison, where he died of cholera the following winter. Robert Agar was sentenced to life in the penal colony of New South Wales, where he died a happy and wealthy man in 1902. Mr. Harranby was killed in 1879 by a horse that kicked him in the skull – he was flogging it. Mr. Trent died of a chest ailment, and Mr. Fowler died of supposed unknown causes. And what of Pierce, or Miriam? Well, no one really knows. First, they were thought to be living splendidly in Paris. Then, their alleged location changed to New York. Neither report has ever been confirmed – and the money from the Great Train Robbery was never recovered.