06x10 - Cold Cold Man

GISELLE: Previously on Empire - I wanna buy your shares.

- Why would I sell?

We'll see.

There's almost no downside risk.

I don't need you anymore.

I'm not going anywhere.

You know, you're more than just an artist.

That's easy to say from the sidelines, Cookie.

You're a star, Melody.

(DRAMATIC HIP-HOP MUSIC)

I've been carrying these around for some time now.

LUCIOUS: You want a divorce?

It's time.

You think Lucious is your hero?

Well, he's not.

He owes you everything.

(LUCIOUS' "PAID IN CASH" PLAYING)

LUCIOUS: Yeah, I need all that Run me my money Cash, dollars, dinero Who do you think?

Yeah, I got the hood on lock People whisper my name Don't nobody tell me when it's time.

- (CELL PHONE RINGING)

- I say when it's time.

Yeah, bosses don't brag Gangstas don't advertise - Hey, bitch.

- TRACY (OVER PHONE): Lucious.

Lucious, don't hang up.

Philly Philly Street, he's ranting about how it was you all along, and he's finally gonna make you pay!

Bitches talk a lot of crap.

No!

You have to listen to me.

He is carrying.

He's on his way to kill you!

LUCIOUS: Money don't sleep, so I slept at the trap house Got tired of running out of luck Trying to make a buck Just to end up in county Till my time's up Counting dollars, yeah Now I'm big ballin', I'm pay But I'm still the same hitter from the old day - Yeah, I'm rich - (SCREEN BEEPING)

But I'm still a gangsta Run me my money Hand over the paper Make sure you pay me in cash (DRAMATIC MUSIC)

(LUCIOUS' "PAID IN CASH" PLAYING)

LUCIOUS: Dinero (GUN COCKING)

(SOLEMN MUSIC)

Go ahead, shoot me in my back.

It's what you do best.

That's what you came to do to me.

I feel your anger, brother.

It's deserved but it ain't gotta be that way.

Look at me.

I served 20 long years, and every second was because of you.

You're right.

(CHUCKLES)

So, what, you gonna tell me another fairy tale about Bunkie?

(LAUGHS)

Come on, let's hear it, Lucious.

Bunkie, Vernon, Shine All true.

But each and every one of those stories ends in tragedy.

(LIQUID POURS)

(BOTTLE CLATTERS)

When I tried to come up, I was so desperate to make it that I let the love of my life go to jail for 17 years.

And all I kept running into was one gatekeeper after another gatekeeper, one white man after another white man who put it in my head that the only way that I could make it is for one of my own not to make it.

So if I had to go through you or any-damn-body else, then you damn right I tried to take your ass out.

I'm not gonna spend another moment, I'm not gonna spend another night thinking about killing the wrong man over money I didn't even earn.

I guess it's too late, Lucious.

Hmm?

It's too late.

Then pull the trigger, man.

You've been down that road before.

Where'd it get you?

20 years.

(SIGHS)

The funny thing is, man, I'm the gatekeeper now, and I can make you a king with your own kingdom where you don't have to use your violence for your currency.

Use your talent now.

I'm not doing this no more, Lucious (BREATHING HEAVILY)

Not for you or that crazy white bitch getting me all riled up.

- White Tracy.

- Yeah.

She was the one that sent me.

(BREATHING HEAVILY)

And now we here, Lucious.

We right here.

(SMACKS LIPS)

She called me and said you were coming.

(LALA'S "ENERGY" PLAYING)

LALA: You wide open, better shoot your shot If I like it, give it all I've got I've been giving you the cheat code What's it gonna be, boy?

Can you catch my vibe?

Can you match my energy?

- Yeah.

- LALA: My energy Are you feeling me?

Yeah, yeah She ain't quiet no more, is she?

- I knew she had it in her.

- No, you did not!

- I did.

- COOKIE: Sisters!

We are looking at a nomination for Best New Artist, girl!

Temptation And if you're good, I'll be waiting Yes, girl!

We need some champagne, then.

Yeah, I would chill on that until the announcements come.

But we gotta get busy, though, all right?

We need to come up with a theme.

I say sexy but smart, nothing fake, honey.

With my contacts, we will set up intimate performances with private dinners for the judges so they can hear Lala at close range.

And then we'll set up the interviews with the big talk shows Okay, well, actually, I was thinking - full media takeover, okay?

- Yes.

Pop-up marketing, FYC billboards.

We need to do pop-ups at high school football games and college campuses and This is a private ASA vote, Cookie, not a public one.

And these judges, they didn't go to high school.

- But their children do.

- BECKY: Uh-huh See, that that's what I'm saying, Giselle.

- (CELL PHONE BUZZES)

- LALA: Are you feeling me?

Gotta take this.

LALA: Gotta match my energy If you're into me Catch my energy Yeah, yeah She's coming in here like she thinks she's the boss.

Okay, but, Giselle, she has really good ideas, okay?

And hi, all of us are the boss.

That's the point of this three-way union, right?

LALA: Can you match my energy?

She's a Lyon, Becky.

LALA: Are you feeling me?

Yeah LUCIOUS: I hate that damn painting.

COOKIE: You ain't the only one - It's a lie.

- Lucious, look, you the one who bought this stupid thing when we couldn't even afford the AC.

Now, does that make sense?

Why don't you just take the damn thing COOKIE: You know what, Lucious LUCIOUS: And I told you they at the lawyer's office.

I don't want nothing from this house but the clothes on my back.

And I'ma need you to get them from your lawyer - and get them to me.

- Well, you're gonna be walking naked, 'cause I paid for the clothes - on your back.

- With my pain!

- Get the damn papers!

- (LUCIOUS STAMMERS)

They've been at this for hours.

Oh, they're just warming up.

COOKIE: I don't want none of this tacky stuff.

- Are we done?

- Hey!

Man, did you sign the divorce papers or not?

I did I told I told you.

They're at my damn lawyer's office.

(STAMMERS MOCKINGLY)

What's wrong with you?

You having a heart attack, stupid?

D I don't work for you!

I don't need to do a damn thing.

Get them to me.

Yes, you do.

You don't tell me what the hell I'm doing.

- If I may - What?

- You're the one trying to - LITTMAN: If I may if I may, there's one more thing.

I I recovered it from a family safety deposit box.

Um, I'm unsure of its value.

Uh, Juanita JUANITA: Mr.

Littman, would you please come with me to the kitchen?

Please.

LITTMAN: (GROANS SOFTLY)

(CLEARS THROAT)

Okay, before we get on other things, who gets Juanita?

I will flip a coin for you for Juanita.

I want Mondays and I want Wednesdays.

Yeah, I'll flip you on your head for her.

Flip you on your big-ass head.

(CHUCKLES)

(LAUGHS)

(MELANCHOLY MUSIC)

It's been a long time since I've seen this.

You know, I wore that every day from the day you got locked up until they set you free and didn't need no more luck after that.

Yeah, I remember putting this on your neck.

You said it would always keep me safe.

It did.

It was my dad's.

You know, I'd like to keep it.

It Just to keep it safe.

Okay, Lucious, you can keep it.

Keep it safe.

But I'ma need them divorce papers ASAP.

Thank you!

(DOOR CLICKS OPEN)

(UPBEAT HIP-HOP MUSIC)

WOMAN: Santa, forgive me, I'm naughty But first on my list is a 'rari BECKY: Looks good.

Oh, wait.

Um, no, no, no, no.

No red lights.

White lights only, and please do not make them blink.

I hate when they blink.

Well, you're a mean one, Mr Stop calling me the Grinch.

Also, what are you wearing to this ASA thing?

(WHISPERING)

That's great.

What shoes are you wearing?

Are you gonna go full holiday?

Maybe the pink Louboutins with the studs.

Close enough.

It's Christmas, not Valentine's Day.

(SCOFFS)

(DRAMATIC MUSIC)

Who huffed in your cornflakes?

She didn't get it.

Who didn't get what?

The nomination.

Tiana or Lala, they didn't get nominations.

Nobody from Bossy got ASA nominations.

We were shut out?

We didn't have enough grease for the right palm?

The ASA voters are the establishment.

They are the white, old, edge-free establishment, and they were never gonna vote for anybody from Bossy, honey.

See, they hate when we win.

Our success proves their irrelevance.

Child, that's a tale as old as time.

Question is, what we gonna do about it?

(SIGHS)

Is it too late just to pull all of our artists from consideration?

Stop asking!

You know it's no.

Well, then what do you suggest, Rebecca?

You're the one who overcommitted us to buying all the booze for a party that we're not even invited to.

Uh-uh.

Uh-uh.

(CHUCKLES)

"We are not falling apart" is my first piece of Bossy business.

Lest we forget it is all about you.

- Wow.

- It is about what I learned sitting in between two catty bitches at the Tea Talk: the power of segue.

Let's change the narrative, mm, from Lala to Melody.

Melody takes Lala's slot at the ASA's nominating ceremony.

Let's make this Melody's emotional out and very loud reintroduction to music.

GISELLE: Melody.

Isn't that the artist who gave one performance to an empty venue?

Um She's given plenty of performances, just as, uh (SOFTLY)

Melvin.

Huh?

What?

Melvin.

Are you trying to say Melvin?

Hey!

Hey!

See, that name is dead.

- Why can't I say Melvin?

- No.

Hey!

That name is very offensive.

You know, you are proof as to why we need our first trans artist to take an ASA stage.

We could get some praise.

We'll also get backlash.

- Exactly.

- But then that backlash will get backlash, and that'll give Bossy more promotion than any nomination ever could.

GISELLE: Now, listen.

- (MOUTHING WORDS)

- GISELLE: I think shifting the resources away from Lala might be a good idea.

But why are we gonna make the same exact mistake and pour a whole bunch of money into breaking a new artist when we already have Tiana on deck to give us something professional and respectable?

Because professional and respectable, that gets me going.

I can see that on a vibrator package now.

Okay, vulgar, nasty You need to unwind that tightness, okay?

Just bring it down a little bit.

Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey!

Why don't we go back to our respective places?

We've got some good plans.

Let's consider it.

You go back to your office.

We'll stay right here.

WOMAN: Mm Mm-hmm ("THE CHRISTMAS SONG" PLAYING)

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire ANDRE: Oh.

Look at that.

It's coming along, babe.

Well, it's the baby's first Christmas.

Feeling naughty or nice?

How'd you sign Prophetic?

WOMAN: Dressed up like Eskimos (SIGHS)

I showed him Empire's holistic approach to his ambitions beyond music.

(CHUCKLES)

You know, the thing about young girls is that they love to hear the sound of their own voice.

Chastity couldn't wait for me to hear hers.

What did she say?

Oh, you want me to say it out loud?

Whatever she said, I guarantee it's extreme.

Okay, look, this is my business.

It's my world.

It's not how I choose to operate, Teri.

Or is it?

We got married so quickly.

Do do I even know who you really are?

I'm the man who won Kelly Patel over on the basis of his work.

WOMAN: And every mother's child Teri, that's the man (DRAMATIC MUSIC)

That's the man that you showed me I had inside, Teri, and it's the only man I'm interested in being.

Well, I hope that man is more powerful than the man who lied straight to my face like it was nothing.

I will not let that happen again.

(DRAMATIC PIANO MUSIC PLAYING)

Mr.

Lucious, you have a guest.

Tell whoever it is to get lost.

Well, I was lost, but now I'm found.

(CHUCKLES)

Come in.

Come in.

I'm Come here, please.

- (BOTH LAUGH)

- Come here.

Mm.

Mm-mm-mm.

I didn't expect you to be here this soon.

I know.

I was trying to surprise you, but, um, should I go?

No, it's just me, you know.

Cookie and I spent half the day dividing up the assets for the divorce, and it's Oh, wait, you filed?

Cookie filed.

Okay.

But that doesn't make you believe in us any less, does it?

I am very well aware of where you are, Lucious.

I could never take Cookie's place, can only be myself and see where I fit in, if I fit in.

(UPBEAT HIP-HOP MUSIC)

WOMAN: Bad girl, and I mean business COOKIE: Over here, fellas.

WOMAN: I only hustle with the queen, sis COOKIE: Right here.

WOMAN: We run these streets - Rock vintage, designer - COOKIE: And I need you to put it right here for all to see.

That's a fabulous piece.

I told you we couldn't trust her.

WOMAN: We do Who run it?

There you go.

Easy.

Yes, thank you.

(LAUGHS)

They in Cookie's hands now, baby.

Get the rest of my stuff.

Thank y'all.

GISELLE: Mm-hmm.

So you went behind my back, Becky's back, and moved on with your little plan for Melody without us agreeing to it.

I sure did, you're absolutely right.

But Melody isn't ready.

And if you are so determined to put somebody shiny in Lala's place, at least pick somebody who's camera-ready, like Tiana.

We cannot promote Bossy using Empire's leftovers.

Oh, we got you, didn't we?

Ooh, well, look at you, learning how to fight.

Why don't you fight for Bossy instead of fighting me?

Okay?

We need to launch Bossy in the most bold, outrageous way, okay?

Giselle, look, we only got one shot, okay?

And that bullet has Melody's name all over it.

You gotta trust me.

I don't agree.

This is a three-way partnership.

I'm voting no, and Becky will vote no.

Well, I'm sorry, but Becky's already voted yes, honey.

Uh, yeah, Giselle, I did.

So if my math serves me right, that means we're doing it Cookie's way, baby.

(LAUGHS)

Ooh, lookee here.

("JINGLE BELLS")

Merry Christmas, bitch.

(SMOOCHES)

MAN: Ho, ho, ho Okay, so you need to keep your core tight on that.

- I got you.

- Good.

Is she gonna be behind me right um, in front of me right here?

- Yes, she's gonna be center.

- In the center?

Instead, can I go around (SOFT MUSIC)

Hey.

Okay, I got some exciting news, baby.

Okay, I'm available to be your ASA partner.

Yes.

(SNAPS FINGERS)

Now we can add some new moves without having Treasure looking like your drunk auntie at a wedding.

You know the event is tomorrow, right?

Yeah.

We've been working on this song and this routine for a month, baby.

There's no way that Empire's gonna let me deviate this late.

Empire works for you.

Uh unless you're not interested.

Come here.

You are queen of the ASAs, Tiana.

You don't need to be performing with no newbie.

Yeah, well, somebody should have gave Bossy the royal protocol, okay?

Because they mismanaged all their resources at the ASAs.

Then they put everything into Lala, and now nobody at the label is even getting nominated.

Ah.

So that's why you're suddenly available?

Look, babe, I'm not trying to be all up under your shadow, as curvy as it may be.

Listen, I can't let Bossy cost me my crown, not them or none of those pro-choice haters.

I can't keep up with you.

Whose fault is your shutout now?

What are you trying to say?

I'm saying that I'm hearing a lot of excuses and not enough music.

Maybe this is a wake-up call for you to get your head back in the game.

(SCOFFS)

My head back in Okay, um, I was trying to do you a favor.

But hey, if you wanna go have fun with my knockoff instead, go ahead.

Just try not to say my name when you're looking into her eyes.

Good luck.

T.

- Tiana!

- Hey, you on a discounted rate.

We have to keep going.

(MELODY'S "BROKEN HOME" PLAYING)

From the top, here we go.

Now shattered are glasses we stained with our lips Set off the matches to burn every brick Ooh Burn every brick Please, oh, please I know that sticks and stones Can't build our broken home (EXHALES DEEPLY)

(SCOFFS)

Okay, what's wrong now?

My notes were perfect.

(OVER INTERCOM)

People don't want perfection.

They want passion.

Whatever.

Uh The only reason why you getting frustrated is because I'm pushing you beyond your comfort zone.

I don't have a comfort zone, okay?

I jump between trying to make new worlds with my music and hiding from people in the old world who wanna beat me up or kill me just for being who I am.

I understand that, honey.

My son Jamal went through the same thing.

Okay.

I'm black, trans, and broke.

Jamal was black, male, and rich.

Whether he came out of the closet or stayed in there for the rest of his life, he would still be a rich black man, making choices only rich people make.

You are missing the point.

We are throwing you the biggest, most outrageous coming-out party on an ASA stage, honey.

I don't wanna be your trans act butterfly, Cookie.

Jamal's music had to come out one way or the other.

He chose for it to come out in truth.

What are you choosing?

(DRAMATIC MUSIC)

(HEELS CLICKING)

Lucious?

Thank you for coming down here, Tracy.

I just wanted to tell you face-to-face.

Thank you for saving my life.

(EXHALES SHARPLY)

(SOLEMN MUSIC)

Philly Street threatened to kill me, but I had to warn you.

That was so brave of you.

Why would you do something like that for me?

Why would you risk yourself to save me?

(EXHALES SHARPLY)

You know.

You never even said the words.

Say the words.

You and I are the real love story, Lucious.

And all those other women with their their hair and their eyes and their insults, they were just a way to lead you back to your Tracy.

My Tracy.

(GASPING)

(EXHALES DEEPLY)

You know what?

You are not gonna ever have to worry about no keys like this again.

Because at this very moment, security is moving your stuff out of your office.

You are done.

Why do you wanna hurt me, Lucious?

I've only ever tried to help you.

I never needed your help!

You do need me.

Andre is stealing Empire out from under you.

And without me, there is no one to stop him and Patel from Do you think I don't know about Andre and Kelly Patel?

I knew that from the start!

Now you're done!

- No!

- Get out!

- Lucious, no, please - Out of my - Lucious, please, no.

No!

- Out!

- Lucious, no!

- Hell up out of here.

- Lucious, you will regret this!

- Good-bye!

TRACY: Lucious!

LUCIOUS: Take her ass out of here.

No!

The only damn thing I regret is not putting on a condom 37 damn years ago.

TRACY: Lucious!

Crackhead.

(OMINOUS MUSIC)

Mm, no.

That's cute, but no.

Oh, purple.

Now, this is what the ASA Lifetime Achievement Award recipient should wear.

Look at that.

That's perfect.

And then look, you put some bling with it, and you're ready for the world.

Look at that.

Isn't this from the "Paid in Cash" album cover?

- No, no, no, no.

No.

- This is great.

You should wear that one.

It's, like, full circle.

I don't I don't I don't need your help for any of this stuff.

I don't even know what the hell I'm doing.

I don't wanna do this stupid thing in the first place.

(DRAMATIC MUSIC)

You don't wanna do it in the first place.

What's up with you?

Talk to me.

What's going on?

It's my own son, man.

He's giving me this ASA thing to try and force me out to pasture.

I feel you giggling back there.

"Pasture.

" Okay, nothing is funny.

Just calm down.

No, no, no.

He's trying to replace me.

And there's nothing weaker than acquiescing to somebody replacing you.

It it's cowardice.

There's nothing weak or cowardly about choosing your freedom.

It's not weak.

You built Empire, Lucious.

Nobody can take that from you.

And you taught Andre everything he knows.

So he'd be replacing you with you.

So stop being so grumpy.

Stop it.

I like being grumpy.

(LIZZO'S "TEMPO")

LIZZO: it up to the tempo - MAN: Tempo - LIZZO: Cut it up Cut it up, boyfriend watching Oh, now he wanna knuckle up Get on this ride, baby You gonna have to buckle up Thick thighs save lives Call me little buttercup MAN: Over here, Lucious!

(PHOTOGRAPHERS CLAMORING)

LIZZO: Is not an "accessorary" Yeah, I said it, accessorary Twerk skills up on legendary Slow songs, they for skinny girls Can't move all of this here to one of those I'm a thick chick, I need tempo it up to the tempo it up to the tempo Ah!

Oh!

There you are.

Hey, you got a little - Songs and - TRACY: Hey!

Whoo!

Oh!

Shh!

(LAUGHS)

Oh, no, wait.

This is my best side.

Best side.

There.

Don't I look pretty?

(LAUGHS)

Whoo!

I need to see your credentials.

Tracy Kingsley.

Sometimes it's under "White.

" (LAUGHS)

Whoo!

Ma'am, you've been stricken from the invite list.

I'm gonna need you to leave.

No!

I belong here.

I belong here.

Lucious.

Lucious, you son of a bitch!

Lucious!

Get off me.

Lucious, you son of a bitch!

Get off me!

Get off me!

- (CAMERAS SHUTTERS SNAPPING)

- Get off me!

Lucious, look, I don't have no love for that girl, Lucious, but no one deserves to be treated like that, and no one deserves to be jerked around.

Have you managed to locate our divorce papers?

I'll get to it when I get to it.

You're not my only priority, Cookie.

(CAMERAS SHUTTERS SNAPPING, PHOTOGRAPHERS CLAMORING)

(APPLAUSE)

- SINGERS: Ooh - MELODY: Ooh (MELODY'S "BROKEN HOME" PLAYING)

One, two, three And I'm staring at the rubble Settle dust at the footsteps of our castle Set in stone the words that went unspoken Yeah Put my hand on my chest The chain on my neck is broken These holy walls are laying at our feet I guess they had to fall Eventually Now shattered are glasses We stained with our lips Set off the matches to burn every brick Please, oh, please I know that sticks and stones Can't build our broken home - (CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

- Ooh Excuse me.

Where's the restroom?

You're not supposed to leave your seat while we're live.

Look, I had a baby three months ago.

I don't make the rules.

My bladder does.

(SIGHS)


There.

You told him, didn't you?

Where have you been?

I've been looking for you everywhere.

Chastity, what are you doing here?

Ask your husband.

Let him tell you how he showed up at my apartment and threatened me for telling you how he paid me to set up Prophetic.

Did he put a hand on you?

Not yet.

But he made it very clear that he could get to me anytime, anyplace.

You're married to a damn monster.

MELODY: Oh, no, no I guess they had to fall Eventually Now shattered are glasses We stained with our lips Set off the matches to burn every brick Please, oh, please I know that sticks and stones Can't build our broken home Oh, oh, oh, oh - (CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

- Ooh Oh, yeah, yeah (CHUCKLES)

- (CAMERAS SHUTTERS SNAPPING)

- (PHOTOGRAPHERS CLAMORING)

Melody, as you can see, everyone here loves you.

That was simply amazing.

But can you please tell us something about yourself?

WOMAN: Melody, who are you working with?

MAN: Inspiration for your music?

All I ever wanted was to sing.

For most of my life, I was a stranger, not just to the world but to myself.

(DRAMATIC MUSIC)

(EXHALES DEEPLY)

I was known as Melvin Austin then.

(CROWD GASPS)

(CROWD MURMURING)

Melvin was a lie, because he had me trapped inside.

I was told the world wasn't ready for who I really was.

So I hid.

I hid until I had the courage to become my true self.

And I thought I was done until Cookie Lyon dared me to sing.

Cookie dared me to share the best part of myself as myself, and tonight is the first time I've ever done that.

So if my journey helps just one other person be true to who they are, then it's worth it.

It's worth it.

Thank you, Cookie.

Oh, so beautiful.

(APPLAUSE)

That's right, girl!

MAN: Yeah, Cookie.

Cookie Lyon.

Way to go, Cookie.

- I'm out.

- Wait wait, Giselle.

(CAMERA SHUTTERS SNAPPING)

Hi, Cookie.

My name is Yana.

Yeah, Damon's daughter.

How did you get that medallion?

This, uh, belongs to Lucious.

Oh, I know whose it is.

How did you get it?

(SOLEMN MUSIC)

Um - YANA: (CLEARS THROAT)

- COOKIE: Uh oh.

(BREATHES DEEPLY)

Oh, I guess you're the one that, um, Lucious is screwing, huh?

I'm sorry.

It's okay.

Lucious loves you, and he loved you for as long as he could.

Sweet baby, I feel sorry for you, because you don't even know that Lucious and everything that he said to you is a lie.

Okay, you don't even know him.

- I know his heart.

- Oh.

Is that what he called it when he used it to get back at your daddy?

My daddy?

What does my dad have to do with any of this?

You have no idea, do you?

All of this is about your father.

Lucious Lucious wanted to hurt Damon because Damon lied to Lucious and he sicced the Feds on him.

And so what better way, then, to screw over Damon than to literally screw his daughter?

He's a lying son of a bitch.

He uses people.

That, sweetheart, is what he does.

It took me half my life to understand that.

I'm saving you from a bullet, Yana.

You should thank me.

Run while you can.

EMCEE: And now please welcome to the stage two first-time ASA nominees, Empire's Devon and Treasure.

I've seen way too many stars Die out before their time Hey But I want this to last forever, yeah ("SLOW BURN" PLAYING)

Been out to way too many bars - Wasting all my nights - HAKEEM: Hey, yo, what's good?

TREASURE: Hanging round Come on, man, we better than that.

Or nevers Aren't you supposed to be on set?

Hey, Cookie just thought that it'd be too much for you tonight.

TREASURE: We could do it BOTH: Don't wanna look back And say we blew it We blew it I want a slow burn What should we do?

Should we make out?

TREASURE: A little longer (LAUGHS)

No.

God, it's it's not about them.

It's me.

It's been a crazy couple months, and I just don't know what's next.

Hey, man, don't worry about that.

You'll figure it out.

You always do.

BOTH: I want a slow burn It may take a little longer, but I want a blow burn I missed you.

TREASURE: It's only gonna Make us stronger Come on, let's get out of here.

BOTH: Slow burn Slow burn - SINGERS: Slow burn - BOTH: Slow burn Ooh (APPLAUSE)

(INDISTINCT CHATTER)

I wish Teri were here to see Lucious' swan song.

Where is she?

Eh.

I'm sure she'll turn up.

(BREATHES DEEPLY)

EMCEE: Ladies and gentlemen, to announce the nominations for Artist of the Year Here we go.

EMCEE: Please welcome this year's recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award, Lucious Lyon.

MAN: Lucious!

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

- MAN 1: Yeah, Lucious!

- MAN 2: You're the king!

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE CONTINUE)

Thank you.

Thank you, thank you.

(APPLAUSE CONTINUES)

Let's all be seated while we celebrate the nominees for this year's Artist of the Year Award.

And the nominees are: Justin Bieber, Miley Cyrus, Billie Eilish, Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift, and wait, not a single damn Empire artist.

(CROWD MURMURING)

Which I find strange, because because over the last few months, Empire has spent all of their time and resources trying to get this one nomination.

I'm talking entire departments instead of spending time making music that's going to be voted on, they're spending all their time courting the voters.

But damn, if this is what Empire has become, I won't have a damn thing to do with it.

(CROWD MURMURING)

And effective immediately I am leaving Empire to the suits and the servants that can still do this kind of dance.

As far as my retirement, well, y'all can start by taking that Lifetime Achievement Award and shoving it up your ass.

(CROWD MURMURING)

Because I am just getting warmed up.

And maybe one day, maybe you might run into somebody (DRAMATIC MUSIC)

That reminds you to set yourself free.

WOMAN: We love you, Lucious!

(LIGHT APPLAUSE)

- Hey.

- Hey.

Met your ex-wife.

(TENSE MUSIC)

She's charming.

Maybe you should just screw my dad.

(SIGHS)

Baby girl.

- (DOOR CLICKS SHUT)

- Everything all right?

What you doing in town?

What happened?

Somebody hurt you?

You're still in remission, right?

Daddy I made a very, very big mistake, and I need you to help me make it right.

(DRAMATIC MUSIC)

Of course, baby, of course.

Oh, man.

(FOOTSTEPS THUDDING)

(GLASS CLATTERS)

(DECANTER CLINKS)

No ice?

You're going deep, huh?

What in the hell did you say to Yana?

You mean Damon's daughter?

You are foul, Lucious.

No, you're just jealous 'cause somebody sees me.

Man, ain't nobody come down here to talk about your little new piece of ass, okay?

But I heard your spiel about freedom, and I'm just wondering, where's mine?

Screw you.

Never again, and I know it was good for you.

(CHUCKLES)

Just sign the papers, man.

They're right here on your desk.

Just sign 'em.

Oh, you think you gonna take away my last hope of having somebody love me for me and you go off and be free and live a happy life?

Nah.

You're stuck with me for life Mrs.

Lyon.

(BOX CLATTERS)

- (GUN COCKING)

- Is that right?

Hmm?

(TENSE MUSIC)

What you gonna do with that?

I don't wanna be married to you for one more second, Lucious.

And I swear to God, Lucious, if I'm not gonna be your ex-wife, I will be your widow.

Where were you?

I needed you.

Are you listening to me?

(WHIMPERS SOFTLY)

Teri, are you okay?

Talk to me.

You threatened her.

You made her afraid in her own home.

What?

Who?

Chastity.

You threatened her because she told me the truth.

I haven't seen Chastity since Prophetic signed with Empire.

Teri, you're not making any sense, bae.

This woman must be playing you.

- She didn't ask for anything.

- Yet, Teri.

I saw the fear in her eyes, Andre.

I know she wasn't lying.

And I am?

Hmm?

All I've done for you since the moment we met is risk my body, my livelihood, my autonomy to make you happy and safe.

And how'd you do that?

Huh?

How did you keep Quincy safe?

God.

The truth of who you are, it's been right in front of me this whole time.

- No, Teri.

Teri, come on.

- No.

- (TERI GASPS)

- What are you Teri, come on.

Stop, babe.

- Teri!

- (DOOR SLAMS)

Come on.

Listen to me!

- (TERI SHOUTS)

- Teri, come on!

I would never do something like that.

She's lying, babe.

Open the door!

Teri!

KINGSLEY: You should stop pounding, Andre.

She's already scared.

(MENACING MUSIC)

(EXHALES HEAVILY)

I would never threaten a woman like that.

Oh.

Oh, no, you wouldn't.

But I would.

Matter of fact I did.

(MUFFLED, DISTORTED ARGUING)

(SOBS)

- Little bitch scared easy.

- You're a liar.

I love it when you call me names.

No, you can't control me.

You can't make me do things.

Oh, really?

Look at your hands, Andre.

No.

No.

Teri's right to be scared.

If she causes us any more problems, we're cutting her loose.

Then pull the damn trigger, man.

- (GUNSHOT)

- (LAUGHS)

Oh, I missed.

What should I aim for now?

Which head, Lucious, huh?

Cookie!

Get your ass over here and sign these papers, Lucious.

Get over here!

(DRAMATIC MUSIC)

So you wanna be divorced from me that bad?

Yup.

You gonna pull a gun on me?

I did.

You're out of your damn mind.

I might be.

(GLASS CLATTERS)

Look, I'ma reach for the pen.

Just sign it.

I'm I need the damn pen.

Here, get the damn pen.

I'm doing this under duress.

- You know this don't - Shut up.

Hold up in court.

You know what's so sad about this, Lucious?

That little Yana she seems like a real smart little girl.

(CHUCKLES)

But that's how you like 'em, huh, Lucious?

Like another Loretha Holloway, huh?

Smart, young and dead-ass in love with you.

And then what do you do?

You use them, you lie to them, and you cheat.

- You manipulated - I never used you for anything that you didn't volunteer for.

You volunteered for every damn thing we Negro, please, I should pop you (GUNSHOT)

Stop!

- Let me go, you son of a - Stop!

Let me go and sign the papers!

No, I'm not signing them!

Lucious, why?

Why?

What else do you want from me, huh?

You took you took my freedom.

You took my babies!

- You took my life.

- Baby, baby, baby.

- You took my dreams!

- I can't Sign the papers!

I can't sign the papers, baby.

I can't.

But you have Yana, Lucious.

She sees you, remember?

She's not you.

(SOBBING)

Lucious, please.

I'm still in love with you.

- Let me go!

- Don't you get that, Cookie?

I love you!

And you still love me.

I know you do.

I know you do.

You love me.

You love me.

We ain't done yet.

Oh, Lucious.

(SOBBING)

- (FOOTSTEPS TAPPING)

- Oh, please, get a room.

Or better yet (GUN COCKING)

- A coffin.

- (COOKIE GASPS)

Eeny, meeny, miney, mo.

(TENSE MUSIC)