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16+ Mature Content

Fear Itself

by Elinor


Warning: This work has been rated 16+ for mature content.

A prequel to a feature script that I've been working on for a long time. Hope to film in the next year.

-

INT. KITCHEN - DAY

A cramped, dirty kitchen. RUSTED appliances. SPLINTED wood floor. A pot of MUSH sits on the stovetop.

ALISON (19), harshly pretty, and VIOLET (22), aged beyond her years, sit at a small, rickety table, each with bowls of MUSH and cups of COFFEE.

In the corner of the room, a beat up radio plays a SONG. Alison gives a weary glance in its direction.

ALISON

This song is so sad.

Violet shrugs.

ALISON (CONT'D)

I don't want to listen to this. Not first thing in the morning.

VIOLET

It's just what they decided to play. You know I don't have control over it.

ALISON

That's not what I was saying.

JIM (23) enters from within. Very much a tramp; OVERALLS caked with dirt and unkempt hair tucked underneath a torn CAP.

ALISON (CONT'D)

Hi. When did you get back last night?

JIM

Late.

ALISON

Please tell me you're not leaving again.

JIM

There's a rich folk on the upper east side that needs some repairs done. I won't be gone long. They said they'd pay well.

Alison scoffs. Jim approaches her.

JIM (CONT'D)

What's wrong?

ALISON

That someone can pay you for repairs while the rest of us are suffering.

JIM

Hey. These days aren't going to last forever.

He kisses Alison softly.

JIM (CONT'D)

I'll be back soon. I promise. I love you, Alison.

ALISON

I love you too.

VIOLET

Eat first.

She gestures to the pot of mush on the stovetop.

VIOLET (CONT'D)

There should be enough.

JIM

It looks delicious, but I've got to go or they'll give it someone else.

He starts to leave, pausing at the entryway.

JIM (CONT'D)

Thank you again, to you and Tom both. I can't express how grateful we are.

Violet nods.

VIOLET

Of course.

Jim smiles tightly, and leaves. A beat.

VIOLET (CONT'D)

Jim is a good man.

ALISON

I know he is.

VIOLET

I know we haven't known each other long, but is something wrong? You can tell me.

ALISON

It's not right. None of this is. Before the crash...it doesn't seem like so long ago.

Violet smiles tightly.

VIOLET

I know.

ALISON

And it's not like Hoover is doing anything about it.

A beat. Alison clenches her jaw.

ALISON (CONT'D)

Violet, I'm going to have a child.

VIOLET

What?

ALISON

I've known since last night.

Beat.

ALISON (CONT'D)

I haven't told Jim yet. I don't know what to do. I'm not ready to be a mother.

Beat. Alison picks up her spoon and tries to take a spoonful of mush, but her wrist shakes and she drops it.

She glances down at the spoon, gives a deep sigh, and begins to cry.

ALISON (CONT'D)

I can't do this anymore. I can't. I can't bring a child into this world. It's been over a year. This isn't the way people are supposed to live.

VIOLET

A month ago, you were living on the streets. Things have gotten better. Jim's been getting work. So has Tom. It'll get better. It's got to.

The song on the radio has since changed, but the NEW SONG is still sad. Alison makes a face, stands up and shuts off the radio.

ALISON

That could change. You never know.

VIOLET

I've an idea.

ALISON

What's that?

VIOLET

We take the boys to the picture show. Or out dancing. Something to get our mind off of all of this. Make you feel better. You can talk to Jim.

ALISON

That sounds nice.

VIOLET

You'll be a good mother, Alison.

ALISON

I sure hope so.

INT. UPSTAIRS LOBBY - NIGHT

Alison and Jim walk slowly down an upstairs lobby, away from a BATHROOM.

ALISON

I don't want to go home.

JIM

Violet and Tom are waiting downstairs.

ALISON

We could stay. See another picture.

JIM

I don't think there are any more tonight. Besides - I think I'm already have nightmares tonight.

ALISON

You think I'm a vampire?

Beat.

ALISON (CONT'D)

You wouldn't know, since you're never here during the day.

Jim looks hurt. Alison bites her lip.

ALISON (CONT'D)

I'm sorry. I shouldn't have said that.

JIM

I work for us. For our future. So we can afford to live with Violet and Tom and a not out on the streets again.

ALISON

I know. I'm sorry.

He kisses her forehead, and takes her hand.

JIM

It's okay.

They eye MOVIE POSTERS on the walls. The OPULENCE of their surroundings.

ALISON

Did they have a house like this?

JIM

What?

ALISON

The repairs you did? You said they were a rich family.

Jim smiles.

JIM

Do you want me to buy you a house like this one day?

ALISON

Is anyone really that rich?

Beat.

ALISON (CONT'D)

Maybe Henry Ford.

They approach a STAIRCASE. Alison stops.

ALISON (CONT'D)

I have to tell you something.

JIM

Of course.

ALISON

I'm...going to have a child.

JIM

What?

ALISON

We're going to be parents. If we want.

JIM

Alison....that's....

ALISON

I want us to have a child, but I just don't know if we're ready.

JIM

What makes you think that?

ALISON

It's hard enough right now as it is.

JIM

Alison, you're not...

ALISON

I don't know.

A beat. Violet emerges on the stairs.

VIOLET

They're going to close in a few minutes. They want us out.

JIM

We'll be right down.

Violet nods.

ALISON (COnT'D)

No. But I'm worried.

JIM

About what?

ALISON

I don't know. You work so hard for me when I'm not sure what I've done to deserve it. And we still suffer.

A beat. Jim gazes at Alison, frozen in time.

JIM

Marry me.

ALISON

What?

Jim gets down on his knee.

JIM

Alison Jean Marsh, will you marry me?

Alison nods furiously. They smile widely at each other, and kiss.

Jim start to walk down the staircase. He extends his hand.

INT. DOWNSTAIRS LOBBY - NIGHT

They see Violet and TOM (20s) waiting at the bottom of the staircase.

VIOLET

You two look happy and it can't be because of the movie. I don't know how I'm going to sleep tonight.

ALISON

Well, we're going to be parents. And we're getting married.

VIOLET

Congratulations!

They all embrace, and head toward the exit. Alison and Jim share a reaffirming look.

FADE OUT 


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13 Reviews


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Reviews: 13

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Sun May 10, 2015 7:38 am
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Arathorth wrote a review...



Hey!

This is such a great story. It's so short but conveys so much emotion and feeling that it stays with you, which is the dream of any screenwriter. You're a natural at dialogue, putting so much meaning in the characters and providing backstory through the current events, which is again, extremely hard to do!

I have some queries over the movement of the characters. In the first scene, when Jim leaves and Alison confesses, the scene becomes very stationary. In dramatic moments like this it can be good to get a character to move, and break the flow, perhaps by Alison going to a window and staring outside, or Violet standing up in shock. This gives more emphasis to the characters emotions.

Formatting wise, you nailed it. I loved your scene descriptions, they were concise and effective. Perhaps at the description "They eye MOVIE POSTERS on the wall. The OPULENCE of their surroundings" you may need some specific detail. Is there a big poster with a smiling rich family that their eyes are drawn to? Do they see a rich family drive away from the cinema, or is it just the contrast of Alison's and Jim's dirtiness and weariness compared to the clean and expensive nature of the cinema. Either way, that needs to be expressed.

You really have created a story that's very intriguing and with great feeling. It would be great for a short film, and you definitely have the talent to create scripts that draw the reader in. I hope to read more from you soon, and I hope I could help a bit!

Arathorth




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Sun Apr 26, 2015 1:36 am
Mea wrote a review...



Hi!

I'm going to say it straight up: this was beautiful. Let me know when you film it, and I'll happily watch it. Unfortunately, because it was so pretty and because I am not super-familiar with scripts, I'm not sure I will be able to help very much.

The main thing I can say is that the backstory is kind of vague. I'm not even quite sure when this story is taking place - though judging by the technology and other things, I'd guess it was around the 1930s-40s. I'm sure that when this is actually filmed, it will be a lot clearer, but for now I'm left uncertain.

I'm also not entirely clear why they are all living together and how they know each other. As far as I can tell, Alison and Jim are paying to be tenants at Violet and Tom's place, and their recovering from a crash - the market crash?

I only have one nitpick: Violet's immediate reaction to Alison and Jim's news seems a bit stiff. I feel like she would have said "Congratulations," but then followed it up with something like "That's so exciting."

I hope I was able to help a little. Thanks for a beautiful read, and good luck on getting this filmed!
-Meandbooks




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Fri Apr 24, 2015 6:33 pm
kevin25a wrote a review...



Well this was really good. Sad, depressing, happy, joyful, and awesome. I'm not usually into sappy emotional stuff, but I'm a huge sap for true romance. I absolutely loved the story, and I hope you keep writing it, because it's really good.

I'm no history buff, and always dreaded that class. But some areas of history I studied thoroughly this was one.

I really hope you continue it here and not just as a film. :)





He wanted his bottle and I didn't want to give him his bottle yet.
— Jack Hanna