INT. BEDROOM - APARTMENT - LONDON - MORNING
A cheap, simple apartment close to the city. ANDREA SUMMERS, mid 20s, wakes reluctantly to the SOUND of her alarm clock. The time, 6:00. She stares at the ceiling for a while before forcing herself out of bed and heading into the bathroom.
ANDREA pours milk into her bowl of cereal. With a spoonful, she puts it to her mouth. She grimaces. The milks cold. Throwing the cereal into the bin, she curses. Picking up her flask and her briefcase, she heads for the door.
The SOUND of the rain greets her before she opens the door. Hastily, she puts on her coat, covers her head with her hood and makes her way to work.
INT. PLATFORM - SUBWAY - MORNING
ANDREA holds her briefcase close to her chest as she waits for the train, her free hand in her pocket, a constant reminder that her phone and house keys are there. The platform is crowded.
The train approaching Platform 1, is the 06:30 train to Westminster.
At the train's arrival, the crowd becomes rowdy as people try to secure themselves a seat on the train. ANDREA doesn't bother to fight her way through the crowd, instead when she gets on, she stands in the gangway.
Among the crowd, ANDREA's eyes catches the attention of an elegant BUSINESSWOMAN in her mid 30s. She walks with a powerful stride in her step as she makes her way pass the passengers before claiming her reserved seat.
When the BUSINESSWOMAN catches ANDREA staring, ANDREA quickly refrains and focuses her attention to the window opposite her as the train begins to move.
EXT. FUTURISM TECHNOLOGIES HQ - WESTMINSTER - MORNING
A neo-futurism inspired office building towers among the city, the famed prize of Futurism Technologies.
A man-made Babel. ANDREA finds herself staring in awe at it's structure, despite how many times she's seen it.
The HONK of a CAR snaps ANDREA back to reality. Embarrassed she apologies as she moves out of the way. As a line of expensive cars parades pass her, a dim hunger grows in her eyes but it fades as soon as it appears.
INT. ELEVATOR - FUTURISM TECHNOLOGIES HQ - MORNING
ANDREA presses the button for the 5th floor. As the elevator door closes, ANDREA immerses herself in the silence. Her eyes are closed. The SOUND of her rapid heartbeat decreases. She's at peace for a brief moment.
Then the elevator doors open and a BURST of SOUND floods into ANDREA's ears. With a deep breath, she makes her way through the office.
(giving her a pile of paper)
Get this to Mark would you.
ANDREA takes it with a fake smile and moves on.
(placing a bulky folder on top of ANDREA's pile of papers)
Could you look over this for me? I'd hate to show the boss, anything that had any errors in it. You know how she is.
I'll look over it tonight.
Just as ANDREA was about to move passed her, she grabs her arm
I'll look at it in my break.
(with a sly smile)
INT. CANTEEN - FUTURISM TECHNOLOGIES - LATER
ANDREA sits alone in the buzzing canteen, the sound of colleagues gossiping and bragging about the money they made in the year clashing against her ears. She's barely touched her food - a tuna and sweetcorn sandwich - her focus is on the folder MARIA gave her earlier.
The folder consists of ideas for a VR phone that is implanted in the user's skin and has a virtual interface. ANDREA flicks through it uninterested. Then her eyes catch the spine of a folder in her briefcase. It's labelled, 'ANDREA'S PITCH IDEA'. Suddenly her eyes fills with hope but it disappears as soon as it appears.
(as she gathers her things)
Don't fool yourself, Andrea.
INT. MEETING ROOM - FUTURISM TECHNOLOGIES - DAY
The room fills with employees eager to impress the boss, ANDREA joins them. Just as she takes her seat, MARIA appears behind her, impatient to hear the feedback on her pitch idea.
Did you look at it?
(handing her the folder)
I loved it! It's a very intriguing idea. I'm sure she'll love it.
You're damn right she will.
(snatching the folder)
And don't you go about getting any ideas. This is mypitch. So just sit there like a good little girl and keep quiet like you always do.
ANDREA nods with a small smile as MARIA takes her seat opposite her. MARIA's feral eyes glaring at her as she cowers into silence. But when an older woman in her early 40s walks in, her menacing behaviour turns dramatic.
LAURAINE WILLIAMS, the CEO of FUTURISM TECHNOLOGIES was dressed in a golden, velvet suit and her short hair was slicked back. Everyone stood to their feet upon her entry. Even when she took her seat at the head of the table, which too was majestic as well as her, no one sat down.
You may be seated.
In unison, everyone took their seats as ordered.
GREGORY SIMPSON, operations manager of Futurism Technologies, dressed in a tailored suit, spoke first.
Just as you asked last week, my team and I have come up with various ideas of products that we could produce-
Get on with it Gregory.
Yes, yes, of course, ma'am.
Eyeing his employees he nods to MARIA to start first, who almost jumps out of her seat at the opportunity.
An interface appears on the glass surface of the table as she stands. She swipes a holographic presentation onto the screen at the back of the room.
With technology becoming much more advance, consumers are growing tired of their old smartphones - they want something hi-tech but not too difficult and simple to access.
MARIA swipes the next slide of the presentation onto the screen, showing a draft model of her proposed idea. It's a small micro-chip.
I give you the future of mobile communication-
(typing away at her phone)
MARIA is in utter shock at LAURAINE's dismissal.
With a single glare that encompassed the wrath of God, LAURAINE silences MARIA, who sits embarrassed in her seat. ANDREA tries to hide her smirk but MARIA catches her, though she's too humiliated to confront her about it.
In the silence, LAURAINE peers up from her phone and scans the frightened faces in the room.
Is that all?
Immediately, the room erupts with a chrous of voices trying to pitch their ideas, hoping to be more successful than MARIA. Among the chaos, ANDREA eyes the spine of her folder. The SOUND of her HEARTBEAT bangs like a drum against her ears as the room fades the black.
INT. ANDREA'S MIND.
INT. BASEMENT - NIGHT
A faulty light bulb dimly lights up the dark room, but the glass chess board on the metal table is clear under the pillar of light.
You're not seriously thinking of pitching your idea, are you?
ANDREA nervously moves a pawn one square forward. Her chess pieces are white.
A gloved hand immediately moves a pawn two squares forward. The chess piece is black.
And what makes you think this time will be any different?
ANDREA looks up at ANDI, who exchanges a mocking stare. Unlike ANDREA, ANDI was casually dressed, her hair was wild and the bags under her eyes looked worse under the harsh light. But ANDI was her. A reflection of her worst trait.
I said maybe.
ANDREA moves another pawn one square forward.
I'm only saying this because I'm trying to help you.
ANDI confidently moves her knight forward to the left.
I don't want you to make an embarrassment of yourself.
Help me? You've been nothing but a pain in my side!
(with a finger to her lips)
Hush, darling. It's your turn.
ANDREA takes a deep breath before moving the first pawn she moved forward, one square. ANDI tuts disapprovingly at her decision before using her knight to capture her piece.
The light bulb above them flickers frantically. The flashes of darkness making ANDI appear more menacing. Then it becomes stable. As ANDI smiles at her victory, ANDREA becomes agitated.
Let me help you.
Reaching across the table, ANDI attempts to hold ANDREA's hand but she slaps it away.
I want to pitch my idea!
So you want to make a fool out of yourself? In front of your colleagues? Ha! They'll never forget it.
ANDREA casually moves her knight forward to the left. It's adjacent to ANDI's
Oh you will because you always do. You've never had the guts to speak your mind, let alone speak in front of multiple people. That's why I'm here-
ANDI moves her knight forward, into ANDREA's territory, capturing her pawn and putting her KING in check.
To keep you in check.
ANDREA becomes anxious.
I don't need to be kept in check.
Oh trust me, darling, you do.
Again, the light bulb begins to flicker frantically, this time causing ANDREA to jump.
I'm what's keeping you from becoming a laughing stock.
(leaning into her seat)
But, hey - if you want to take the reins and see what will happen, be my guest. You know what piece to move.
ANDREA eyes the board and notices a blank square in which she could move the KING out of harms way. But as she reaches to move it she becomes hesitant.
Just don't come crying to me when you fall flat your face.
INT. MEETING ROOM - FUTURISM TECHNOLOGIES - DAY
A flash of light brings her back to her senses. ANDREA realises that she's in the meeting room, the numerous voices still gnawing at her ear.
She looks at her folder, then at her colleagues, then at her folder, then at LAURAINE who seems unbothered by the noise as she types away at her phone.
With a deep breath, ANDREA brings herself to a tranquil state.
(standing to her feet)
I have an idea!