At a fancy auction house in London. A wealthy businessman has just placed the highest bid for an ancient Chinese vase. As the vase is taken away and the businessman exits to complete the paperwork, the auctioneer shuffles some papers around to prepare for the next item, which the auction house’s staff is bringing to the stage. Nicolas Cage is sitting in the front row and sipping wine from a bejeweled goblet.
AUCTIONEER: Next up is item 7663-B, a full-size velociraptor skeleton. As you can see, the skeleton is complete and in impeccable condition, as it was found just last month at a previously undisturbed dig location. A very exciting item, indeed, and one that we are proud to present. We will open the biddin…
NICOLAS CAGE: Excuse me, my good man. I have a few questions.
AUCTIONEER: This… this isn’t the time for questions. Everything you need to know should be on the item’s information sheet, Mr. Cage.
NICOLAS CAGE: Ah, I see my reputation as a dinosaur skeleton aficionado has preceded me yet again.
NICOLAS CAGE: I never told you my name. You must have recognized me from my past experience as a collector of ancient bones.
AUCTIONEER: I… I mean, no. You’re Nicolas Cage, from Face/Off. I think we’ve all seen Face/Off here, yes?
[crowd mumbles in confirmation]
AUCTIONEER: Okay, as I was saying. We will open the bidding at $400,000.
[Nicolas Cage raises his hand]
AUCTIONEER: Please use your paddle to place a bid, Mr. Cage.
NICOLAS CAGE: No, I still have a question.
AUCTIONEER: [sighs] Fine.
NICOLAS CAGE: Were these bones stolen from Mongolia?
AUCTIONEER: If you just look at the information sheet, you can read up on the origin yourse-…
NICOLAS CAGE: I’ve been burned before, you know.
AUCTIONEER: Uh, no. To my knowledge these bones were not stolen from Mongolia.
NICOLAS CAGE: Excellent. I bid $1.3 million.
AUCTIONEER: Mr. Cage, the opening bid was $400,000.
NICOLAS CAGE: You drive a hard bargain. Fine, $1.5 million.
AUCTIONEER: But… Sir, I believe you’re confused. This isn’t a negotiation. I’m not selling you this skeleton, personally.
NICOLAS CAGE: Backing out of our deal already, eh?
AUCTIONEER: No no. This is an auction. You’re bidding against everyone else here. I know for a fact you’ve been to one of these before. If you want to bid on the skeleton just raise your paddle when I announce a new price. You follow?
NICOLAS CAGE: Understood.
AUCTIONEER: We open the bidding at $400,000.
[Nicolas Cage raises his hand again]
AUCTIONEER: [sighs again] Are you bidding or is this another question?
NICOLAS CAGE: Question. Do you accept trades?
NICOLAS CAGE: [pulls out velvet-lined titanium suitcase and removes something from it very carefully] I will trade you this authentic dinosaur head for that velociraptor.
AUCTIONEER: Mr. Cage, that appears to be the heavily-used child-size plush head of a Barney the Dinosaur Halloween costume.
NICOLAS CAGE: A-ha! But if it’s a child’s Halloween costume, then why did I pay $760,000 for it? Answer me that!
AUCTIONEER: I… no, we don’t accept trades.
NICOLAS CAGE: Fair enough. I bid $1.7 million on the dinobones.
AUCTIONEER: Again, sir, the opening bid is $400,000.
NICOLAS CAGE: $3.6 million and I won’t take no for an answer.
AUCTIONEER: [rubbing temples] Look, does anyone else here want to bid on this? Or can we just let Mr. Cage have it and move on? Please? Okay, here goes. $3.6 million going once… $3.6 million going tw-…
OLD MAN IN BACK: I bid $3.7 million.
AUCTIONEER: Dammit! God dammit! No! No you don’t! We’re not doing this! The velociraptor skeleton is sold to Nicolas Cage for $3.6 million! Mr. Cage, come up here and collect your bones, then please leave.
NICOLAS CAGE: With pleasure. Just let me put my authentic dinosaur head back in its case and I’ll… wait a second. Could it be?
AUCTIONEER: Oh, Jesus Christ. What now?
NICOLAS CAGE: … But they told me it was just a legend…
AUCTIONEER: Sir, we really do have a lot of items to get to today.
NICOLAS CAGE: It explains so much. You driving the price up to scare me off, the mysterious Freemason trying to outbid me at the last minute…
OLD MAN IN THE BACK: [quietly] It was supposed to be a gift for my grandson.
NICOLAS CAGE: It all makes sense now. You were trying to cover up the truth.
[Nicolas Cage walks up on stage and slowly, delicately places the plush Barney head over the skull of the velociraptor, then steps back in awe]
NICOLAS CAGE: The Purplesaurus was real.
Photoshops by Burnsy