Definition of Rant: (dialect British) a rousing good time.
(St. Stephen's Day, 2016. The Riggs Brothers stand in the open back of an airborne C-130. All wear parachutes, but in place of a backup chute Jesse is sporting a baby carrier holding baby Zeke. Below them, a snowy, rugged landscape crawls by.)
Jordan: (shouting to be heard over the wind and engines) Are you sure you don’t want a backup chute?! Kim packed these parachutes!
Jesse: I’ll be fine! I’ve got Zeke with me!
Jordan: How is he supposed to help? Can he fly?... Wait, can babies fly?! Is that a thing?!
Jesse: No, they bounce. Ya know - he’s a bouncing baby boy! If we hit the ground we’ll just bounce!
Ethan: I’m not sure that’s how it works! He doesn’t appear to have any of the necessary structural integrity to bounce from this height!
(The red light above the open bay door changes to green and Jesse drops out of the back of the plane.)
Jordan: (watching Jesse fall) Kim usually does a good job with the parachutes. I’m sure he’ll be fine.
* * *
Jordan: Does he normally nap this time of day?
Jesse: (sitting against a tree on a high snow-covered ridge with a sleeping Zeke on his lap) Let the little man nap when little man wants to nap. Usually he has to be coerced.
Jordan: (to Zeke) Someday you'll regret not taking all the naps. (to Jesse) Do you think it was a good idea to let Ethan scout ahead on his own? He might be unprepared for what he finds.
Jesse: Ethan is as unflappable as they come. You on the other hand.
Jordan: I can be unflappable! Stoic even. Once back in ‘Nam I was laconic.
(From the next ridge a powerful shout of disbelief is heard, followed by a string of creative invectives.)
Jesse: Well we can't catch up to him while he's swearing. Zeke will learn something his mother doesn't approve of.
Jordan: If we walk slow he’ll have run out of breath before we arrive.
* * *
(Jordan, Jesse, and Zeke walk up to the top of the next ridge to find Ethan laying in the snow, panting.)
Jordan: Remind me not to throw you a surprise party.
(Ethan just points breathlessly out from the ridge, which drops off steeply to a rocky beach, beyond which are breakwaters and open sea. Nothing to be upset about, until one considers the fact Finland should be where there is water.)
Jordan: Told you so.
Ethan: But an entire country?!
Jordan: It's not like it's a very big country. It's almost literally half the size of Texas.
(Jesse looks contemplatively at the Finnish sea while Zeke, in his arms, leans into the cold salt breeze, thoroughly enjoying the experience if his cooing is anything to go by. Seriously, this baby loves a cold breeze.)
Jesse: Putin has some explaining to do.
Jordan: You'll have to get in line, I think. Seems everyone wants to talk to him these days.
Ethan: (staggering back to his feet) Whew… The question now becomes where does Santa actually reside?
Jordan: Eastern Sweden?
Jesse: That would explain a few things.
Jordan: Maybe northern Estonia.
Jesse: That would explain a lot actually.
Ethan: We could give the Panamanian Papers another look, maybe he has accounts under an alias we haven't noticed yet.
(Zeke burbles something sounding like disagreement.)
Jesse: I don't want to go through those again either. It was depressing how many celebrities are using shell corporations to buy copies of their own biographies and get on the New York Times bestseller list.
Ethan: Lots of new biographies to write after this year.
Jordan: Stop right there. We do not have time to lament every celebrity who died, went into hiding, or is currently spending a year dead for tax purposes.
Ethan: Died? I meant the 132,826,010 babies born this year at the time of this conversation.
Jordan: And didn't you get married? That should warrant a chapter in a few books.
Ethan: You got married, too. I think I was there.
Jesse: You both got married. The paperwork was a nightmare.
Ethan: You had a kid. If you thought the lifting of the U.N.’s sanctions on Iran was significant, you should have heard the uproar over your procreation.
Jesse: People, in general, need to chill.
Ethan: Well, they can't do it in Finland. It's not here.
Jesse: Plenty of other chill places. Switzerland, for instance.
Jordan: I'm up for some chocolate.
Ethan: I'll signal the plane. Get the Fulton recovery device ready.
Jordan: (looks at Zeke) You're gonna love this.
(Zeke ignores him, pointing out to the ocean. Jordan follows his gesture and sees a large ship on the horizon.)
Jordan: The child has tremendous eyesight.
Jesse: (raises binoculars) That's a Japanese whaler.
Ethan: I feel an international incident coming on.
Jordan: I am running low on whale blubber.
Jesse: And I didn't get Bristen anything for Christmas.
Ethan: Piracy on Saint Stephen's Day. I like it. And they can't really complain if it happens on a sea that doesn't exist.
Jesse: Let's make this quick before Zeke needs another nap.
(Zeke gives several grunts of disagreement as Jesse and the other two trigger the balloons on the Fulton recovery device.)
Jesse: You will so need another nap today.
Jordan: Are you arguing with a baby?
Jesse: It's a hobby.
Jordan: You need a new hobby.
Jesse: I really do.
(The C-130 roars by overhead snagging the retrieval lines, whipping the four Riggs men off the ridge and into the sky. And you could hear them yell as they flew out of sight…)
All: Merry Christmas to all! And to all a good fight!