The foyer of the Oriental hotel which becomes a chessboard.

Isn't it strange the complications
People attach to situations
Almost as if they want to miss
The wood for the trees
Nothing will change my basic feeling
When they've done all their wheeler-dealing
Those in the strongest situations
Do as they please

You might see all kinds of human emotion here - passion and pain, love and hate-

I see nothing other than a simple board game

In the Dusit Thani hotel, Bangkok, Alexander Molokov makes his first move.

We did not bring you to Bangkok for a holiday, my dear. You must tell your husband that he has to come home.

You can have the life you want
And anywhere you want it -

But if he's going to win, then life is going to be very tough for you - tell Anatoly that!

Make him think of you not
Narcissistic dreams of glory

How many times does he want to be champion, anyway?

Two days later the wife makes her move...

How many times do you want to be champion anyway?

Who needs a dream? Who needs ambition?
Who'd be the fool in my position?

Once I had dreams; now they're obsessions
Hopes became needs, lovers possessions

Now you're where you want to be and who you want to be and doing what you always said you would and yet you know you haven't won at all
Running for your life and never looking back in case there's someone right behind to shoot you down and say he always knew you'd fall

When the crazy wheel slows down
Where will you be? Back where you started

Back at the Oriental, Walter de Courcey makes his gambit perfectly clear.

Your father is alive.

My father? Alive?

In Russia. Thirty years in prison.

And you think I believe you?

The evidence is conclusive. And Anatoly will believe me. Now you get Anatoly to lose to Viigand and Molokov assures me he can get your father out - and not only him -

There are some people to recover
I know that you would simply love a
Chance to make sure your father's name
Is high on our list
We want him back which is to say a
Gesture is needed from your player
We wouldn't mind if he got beaten
In fact we insist

There must be a lie
You wouldn't tell me
A limit to your devious ambition
But what they could be
I can't imagine
Is there no one here who's not a politician?
There's no deal!

(she hands the document back to WALTER who sidles away)

When I was young I learned survival
Taught myself not to care
Luxuries such as father, mother
Vanished into thin air
How can a half-remembered figure
From a past so remote that it's hardly real
Alter the way I feel?
Pity the child who 35 years on
Finds that confidence gone

While in subterranean marble surroundings two of the most powerful players make a mid-game assessment....

You should have seen how she reacted
I couldn't leave till she'd extracted
Promises she would see her father
Simple I said
Told her the way she could achieve this
Even though you might not believe this
She said that I was not to worry
Go right ahead

You don't know her well
She could have fooled you
She could despite herself try to resist us

I don't think I'm wrong
But let's be certain
There are others we can call in to assist us...

(Walter moves over to Frederick)

And who better than the dethroned king?

Remember, Freddie, who's paying for you to be here in Bangkok - not the Chess Federation. Now we've got a deal to get some people out - including Florence's father - provided Anatoly loses, so convince him!

(on phone to Anatoly)
Communist, Democrat

An intriguing collusion

Fair exchange - tit for tat

Comradeship in profusion

And the appeal, partner
Of this deal, partner
Is we all stand to win
You and me, the lady also
Don't break her heart, partner

Just be smart, partner
Throw the match, show your love
Is as pure as snow in Moscow

Who put you up to this? There's no deal!

So Frederick makes a desperate final play for the woman he hasn't seen for a year

Silly boy, woman who
I should not have let walk out
There's no hitch
That we two
Can't untangle or talk out
And the appeal, partner
Of this deal, partner
Is we both stand to win
We'll bring back the golden era
Stick with me, honey
Leave him be, honey
You don't know what they've planned
For you long ago in Moscow

Can't you see we've moved on?
Chess has nothing to do with this -
Freddie - Chess isn't life!

But I've changed - I've grown up! He won't help you! He won't throw the match! I'm telling you the truth, Florence!

Who'd ever guess it?
This would be the situation
One more complication
Should be neither here nor there
I wish I had it in me not to care

Let him spill out his hate
Till he knows he's deserted
There's no point wasting time
Preaching to the perverted

Who'd ever think it?
No-one makes the moves intended
'Til the game has ended
Then they say I told you so
I'm learning things I didn't want to know

It can all be different now Florence - I love you!

Everybody's playing the game
But nobody's rules are the same

Nobody's on nobody's side
Everybody's playing the game
But nobody's rules are the same
Nobody's on nobody's side

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