NO BODIES FOOL – “I’M SURE SHE’S A WELL ADJUSTED WOMAN”

INT. RESTAURANT. DAY.

Alan walks over to Richard and Jane, his hand shaking on his mobile.

He goes to sit down. Stops. Places his hands on the arms of his chair and just stands.

Jane notices the sweat pouring down his cheeks.

JANE:

Hey Al, you don’t look so good.

Alan feels his hand over his forehead.

ALAN:

No, you know I think I might be coming down with something. It would probably be best for me to go home you know and lye down.

Jane’s face falls.

JANE:

Well what about the capsule? We were supposed to dig it up together…

Alan hand grips tighter onto the chair.

ALAN:

Well yeah you know I would, would just love… just love to do it. But wow, I think I must be coming down with a fever or something.

Alan goes over to embrace Jane. Almost trips over the chair on his way to greet her. They embrace.

ALAN:

Great to see you again Jane.

JANE:

Keep in touch.

ALAN:
I will.

Alan waves his hand in Richard’s direction. Avoids eye contact. Richard stares to the ground tapping his finger in his glass of wine.

ALAN:
See you later Ritch.

RICHARD:

See you later buddy.

Alan begins to head towards the exit, his movements caught halfway between a fast walk and a spirited jog.

INT. ALAN’S CAR. NIGHT.

Alan looks at the time on his dashboard. 8:44 PM. A smile lights up his face.

His left leg shakes uncontrollably.

ALAN:

Alice Granger. Oh boy. After all these years. Al you are in here. Don’t blow it. Do not mess this up. Play it cool. Walk into the room like you own the place. Like a man of success… like.. like Richard.

Alan’s nostrils begin to flare.

ALAN:
Dump of a town huh you smug bastard. Dump of a town. You think my life is so pathetic. We’ll see who looks pathetic after tonight. I’m about to make love to a woman who wouldn’t look at you twice.

INT. RESTAUARANT. DAY.

Jane and Richard are finishing up with a cup of coffee.

JANE:

Good to see him again huh.

RICHARD:
Yeah. Good old Al. Shame he had to leave. He looked pretty rough though.

Jane stares into her mug with a concerned expression.

JANE:
Hey I meant to ask you something. Did you contact Claire?

Richard pulls a blank expression. Shrugs.

JANE:

The psycho from our drama group. Used to talk to herself and laugh out loud for no apparent reason.

Richard smiles. Nods his head.

RICHARD:
Oh yeah psycho bitch. Man she was a riot. But, no why would I contact her. She was never in the gang.

Jane screws up her face. Bites her finger nails.

JANE:
You think she’s okay though right? I just think about her sometimes.

Richard stares to the floor. His eyes full of sorrow.

RICHARD:
No I imagine she’s probably locked up in an asylum for the insane writing our names on the walls with her own blood.

Jane’s eyes widen in horror. Richard bops his head up. Bursts into laughter.

RICHARD:

I’m messing with you. Course she’s alright. She’s probably a well adjusted woman with a good job, nice husband and a couple of kids. That was ten years ago. Gees. I doubt she even thinks about us at all.

NO BODIES FOOL – THE PHONE CONVERSATION

INT. ALICE’S HOUSE / BEDROOM. DAY.

Claire is sloped next to Alice’s bed with a comb in her hand. We see that she is casually brushing the hair of Alice’s decapitated head.

Sat next to her is a portable telephone. She dials a number with her free hand and then balances the phone in between the side of her face and her shoulder so that she can use both hands to play with her human doll.

We hear a voice on the other end of the line. Claire’s face lights up. She closes her eyes and then flashes her teeth.

Her vocal impersonation of Alice is sublime although her facial expression remains emotionless throughout the entire conversation.

CLAIRE (O/P)

Oh hey. Oh my god. Alan, it’s really you. After all these years. Wow, feels so weird hearing your voice again. No, no don’t tell them it’s me. Make an excuse to leave so that I can talk to you properly.

INT. SMALL RESTAURANT. DAY.

Alan comes off the phone for a second.

ALAN (O/P)

Excuse me for a moment. This is quite an important call.

Alan leaves Richard and Jane to chat amongst themselves.

We follow Alan out of the room.

ALAN (O/P)

Oh my god. Alice how have you been?  How are you? How… How come you couldn’t make it?

INT. ALICE’S HOUSE / BEDROOM. DAY.

Claire digs her nails deep into Alice’s hair. Her eyes beam as she feels the curls in her hands.

CLAIRE (O/P)

Well you know, I thought about it. But the idea of having to see those two assholes again made me want to vomit. Well, yeah but not just Richard. Jane’s just as big a tool as he is. Condescending little shrink. I never really liked them if I’m being honest with you. You were the only one in the group I really respected.

EXT. SMALL RESTAURANT. DAY.

Alan is stood outside facing an increasingly dark sky.

ALAN (O/P)

Well gee, thank-you. But you know it’s been fun catching up with Jane you know. She’s not too bad. And hey how do you know she got into therapy. She said she hasn’t seen you since sixth form.

INT. ALICE’S HOUSE / BEDROOM. DAY.

Claire tugs tight on Alice’s hair. Her voice is angrier, the impersonation fading,.

CLAIRE (O/P)

What? Nosy little bullshitter like that. She was born for such a profession.

Claire calms herself down. Steadies her brushing technique.

CLAIRE (O/P)

Anyway, enough about those two clowns. You’re the one I want to see Al.

EXT. RESTAUARANT. DAY.

Alan gulps in hard .Tugs hard onto his jumper.

ALAN (O/P)

Me?

INT. ALICE’S HOUSE /BEDROOM.  DAY.

Claire’s eyes are firmly focused on the human head of Alice.

CLAIRE (O/P)

Yeah, you Al. I’ve thought about you a lot over the years but just never really got round to making the phone-call. Your goofy little smile and all your adorable little nervous ticks. You could always cheer me up. You know, I’ve just come out of a tough relationship and I just don’t know where my head is at right now. You know I could really do with some cheering up. I suggest you ditch those two know-it-alls and come and meet me…

INT. SMALL RESTAURANT. DAY.

Alan is pacing up and down. Sweat pouring from his brow.

ALAN (O/P)

Well eh gee yeah sure. Sure. Okay. Where abouts do you live nowadays. I’ve had a few glasses of wine but I can drive okay. I think.

INT. ALICE’S HOUSE / BEDROOM. DAY.

CLAIRE (O/P)

I’ve got a better idea. How about we meet inside our old school? We can relive some of our old memories. Maybe create some nice new ones.  No, don’t worry about that. It’ll be open. And it’ll just be me and you. Think about that for a second.

EXT. SMALL RESTAURANT. DAY.

Alan is practically hyperventilating. He sits down on a step for fear of fainting. Wipes his hand across his wet forehead.

ALAN (O/P)

No it’s not that I don’t want to, there’s nothing I want more. It’s just I… don’t know that it’s such a good idea breaking into our old school like that.

INT. ALICE’S HOUSE / BEDROOM. DAY.

Claire yawns. She is fed up with this bumbling idiot.

CLAIRE (O/P)

Listen honey. I’m going to be there at nine. All you’ve got to do is climb the gate and you’ll notice a light on in the main entrance corridor. You can meet me there or you can curse yourself for months to come over what might have been.

Claire ends the call and chucks the phone on the bed. She hums to herself and then goes down to kiss Alice on the forehead. Continues to rigorously brush her hair.

CLAIRE:

Soon, you’re going to have a new playmate.  Oh yes you are.

NO BODIES FOOL – THE RESTAURANT SCENES

INT. SMALL RESTAURANT. DAY.

Richard strides confidently into the room. Takes in his surroundings. Strokes his chin whilst tapping his right foot on the floor. The Bee Gees Staying Alive may as well be accompanying him as he enters.

The place is pretty basic, a row of dimly lit tables, a bar, various chalkboards displaying messages and town jokes. A cosy, comforting atmosphere.

Richard looks to an empty table and sees himself at eighteen blowing out candles on a big birthday cake. A number of people in the café clap around him.

The image fades. Richard looks around and spots Jane and Alan in the corner of the room. They are discussing something in an animated fashion.

Richard nods his head up and down for a moment before making way to the toilets.

INT. RESTAURANT / TOILET AREA. DAY.

Richard rises from the wash basin with his face looking fresh and clean.

He stares at his reflection in the mirror and takes in a deep breath of air.  Notices one curl out of place in his hair and makes the necessary amendments. Checks his face for any spots or bruises. Feels around his mouth to make sure his shave has been as clean as possible. Finally Richard waves a finger towards his reflection –  a man impressed with what he sees.

Richard moves onto his body. Tenses his arms. Begins to pounce from side to side like a boxer. Comes closer towards his reflection.

RICHARD:
You’re the man Ritchie Boy. And you’ve always been the man. Now you’re going to go out there and show those two clowns what success looks like.

Richard takes out his wallet and then digs into his pocket for a small photograph featuring his wife in a flashy bikini.  He places the photo at the edge of the wallet. Fastens it shut. Opens up the wallet again and the photo falls to the floor. Richard picks up the photo and smiles.

INT. RESTAURANT. DAY.

Jane and Alan are sat sharing a glass of wine. Jane is a little chunkier and has shorter hair but Alan looks identical to how he did ten years previous. Body language indicates that they are comfortable in one another’s company but Jane is trying way too hard to have a good time. Laughing excessively, exaggerated body movements and eyes that are so wide they appear to have been glued open.

Alan is in the midst of telling a joke and every so often Jane releases a series of hokey chuckles. Now approaching the punchline Alan has his arms flayling wildly in the air.

ALAN:
So then she says.

Alan takes a sip of wine. Throws out his hand in front of Jane.

ALAN:
Wait for it. And so then she says: “That’s because they’re not your shoes.”

Alan guffaws. Jane sits stony faced before remembering to laugh along.

ALAN:
That bit kills them every time.

Alan goes through the joke in his head again and smashes his fists against the table. His eyes are close to tears.

ALAN:
It just never gets old.

Richard comes up behind Alan. Jane makes eye contact and they share a look. Richard presses a finger against his lip telling her to keep quiet.

Quick as a flash Alan is placed into a tight headlock by a beaming Richard.

Jane smiles but then observes Alan’s fierce struggle. Richard has held on for too long. The moment is quickly becoming awkward.

Alan fights free and holds up his fists ready to fight. Takes in Richard’s face and relents.

Richard punches him on the arm and gives him a playful slap to the cheek.

Alan holds his fingers to his swollen neck.

ALAN:
Richard.

He holds out a warm hand to his old companion but a distinct coldness in his eye tells us that he is a little pissed about the sneak attack.

Richard accepts Alan’s hand and engages in a vigorous handshake.

RICHARD:
Sorry old pal, old habits die hard.

Alan coughs. Disguises something rude under his breath. Sits back down in his chair.

ALAN:
Yes well, I must say that your grip has certainly gotten stronger since the last time we wrestled.

Richard nods his head up and down with a smug expression.

RICHARD:
Yeah sorry. Don’t know my own strength sometimes. Although I should, I’ve just started to lift like 120 pounds on the bench press.

Richard lets this statistic hang in the air for a moment before turning in Jane’s direction.

RICHARD:
Jane Cummings. It’s like I’m having a flashback. You look exactly the same as when I last saw you.

Jane rises up to embrace Richard with a hug.  She releases her hold and then looks her old friend up and down.

JANE:
You’re looking good, Rich.

Richard places his hands behind his head. Raises his eyebrows.

RICHARD:
Well you know, I like to care of myself. Work on a different body part each day. Try to lock in at least four tough weights session a week.

Jane smiles at Richard’s overly masculine tone.

JANE:
Okay. A simple how have you been would have sufficed.

Alan laughs heartily whilst taking a large sip of his wine. He is still feeling his fingers around his swollen neck.

Richard’s relaxed arms became tightly crossed across his body. He takes a seat and begins to tap on the table trying to re-establish his presence.

RICHARD:
Alright then, ten freakin years. What have you guys been up to? Where do you work? How far do you live from this dump?

Alan’s nostrils flare a little.

ALAN:
Actually, I still live in “this dump”. Not everyone was so desperate to leave. I run a charity shop in the town and love every second of it.

Jane beams. Richard just scowls. Disappears into his menu. He was supposed to be showing up these losers.

MONTAGE.

Jane talks about the time they played hide and seek in the drama studio when Alan was convinced for days after that he had seen a ghost whilst in hiding.

Richard pulls a nonchalant expression. Buries himself into a glass of water. Leafs through the menu whilst Alan and Jane expressively relive the story.

Food comes and goes. More wine is ordered.

Jane makes dance motions with her arms. Alan does the same. Jane turns to Richard but he shakes his head. Pretends that he doesn’t know what they’re talking about.

Alan stands up and proceeds to impersonate some of their old teachers.

Jane almost falls off her chair in laughter.

END MONTAGE.

Richard grabs his wallet from out of his right pocket and places it on the surface of the table.

Alan sits back down and begins to tell another story. Richard watches his two old companions carefully and then pushes the wallet forward into the centre of the table. Unzips the button and as planned the photo of his wife falls in front of Alan’s face.

Alan reacts and goes to pick up the photo. Richard feigns embarrassment.

Alan takes a good look at the photograph and flashes a devious smile.

ALAN:
Nice. This must be the wife you were telling us about. Interesting photo to carry around in your wallet.

RICHARD:
No I don’t usually. It must have just slipped in there.

Alan itches his forefinger over his mouth whilst muttering something under his breath.

JANE:
Oh, let me see.

Richard hands her the photo. Places his hands back over his head and leans back in his chair. His aura has been restored.

JANE:
Wow, she’s in great shape. What does she do?

Richard closes his eyes. The plan could not be going any better. He rolls up his sleeves and licks his lips as he prepares to explain.

RICHARD:
Well she doesn’t need to do much to be honest with you. I’ve recently got a top job promotion within the finance department of my firm. Own office, assistant and an 80 k a year wage.

Richard races through what he has just said and eagerly awaits the response.

ALAN:
So she doesn’t work. Careful buddy, could have a gold-digger on your hands.

Alan nudges Richard who stares back at him venomously.

RICHARD:
What, are you trying to imply that she’s out of my league? Did you take a look at yourself recently.. buddy?

Alan’s mouth falls open. He begins an awkward laugh.

ALAN:
It was just a joke Ritchie.

Richard is still holding his stare. Alan feels his fingers around his neck. His expression is one of discomfort.

RICHARD:
Well then you’ll have to excuse me but I don’t really see anything funny about it.

Jane digs her nails into the palm of her hand and clears her throat.

JANE:
So Richard, what’s the deal with Alice. Too high and mighty to come back and see us.

Richard turns around his anger subsiding.

RICHARD:
Tried her phone. A number of times, actually. Couldn’t get through to her.

Alan gazes into the air with a wondrous gaze.

ALAN:
I’ll bet she’s doing really well for herself…

NO BODIES FOOL – RICHARD’S DRIVE HOME (BIRTH-PLACE)

INT. RICHARD’S CAR. DAY.

Richard steps into his mercedes and grabs something out of his bag before chucking it to the back.

We see that he is a C-D in his hands. He caresses the case as if it were a magic lamp. Takes the C-D out and very carefully slots it into his C-D player. Slight pause before a rock song from his youth blares back a him.

Richard’s face erupts with joy. His eyes sparkle. He mimes playing the guitar and pretends to change chords with his fingers whilst singing at the top of his lungs.

A pedestrian spots this charade and stares in his direction. Richard laughs, pulls off a cocky wave and then kicks his vehicle into gear.

INT. RICHARD’S CAR – DRIVING ALONG A COUNTRY ROAD. DAY.

Richard spots the sign for his birth town. 5 miles to the town centre.

As he passes by and recognises a plethora of different images, a wave of nostalgia rushes over him.

He looks at a patch of grass and sees himself at seventeen. He is riding a bike whilst chugging down a bottle of alcohol. Alan is hanging on for dear life behind him.

The image fades.

Richard drives past a small park. Sees himself at seventeen again busy flirting at the goalposts with a flock of girls.

Again the image fades as he drives on.

Richard takes in a deep breath of air trying to maintain the vividness of the images.

NO BODIES FOOL – RICHARD AND TRISH

INT. RICHARD’S HOUSE / LIVING ROOM. DAY.

The tall, muscular figure of Richard (27) stands by the phone.

A vain man, he is sharply dressed and carefully inspects the edge of his finger nails. His hair is immaculately styled and a gold watch gleams from his lower right arm.

Richard taps his foot on the floor. Shrugs. And then puts the phone down. Besides him we notice a massive television screen playing a crappy reality programme on low volume.

Sat opposite Richard and lounged on a wide sofa is his sexy, young wife TRISH ANNABLE (23). She is very much the trophy wife with a pair of large breasts to make up for her minimal amount of thought. She is beach blonde, has sharp, blue eyes and has a very toned body. Dressed in shorts and a tank top she looks gorgeous as hell and knows it.

Trish is reading through a Heat magazine article comparing the size of her waist to one of the celebrities pictured inside.

She notices Richard staring pensively around the room.

TRISH:
What’s up, my sweety-pop?

Richard turns in admiration of his wife’s lustful figure and then reverts back to admiring his own.

RICHARD:
Nothing, my sweety-pop. Just thinking.

Trish feigns a severe lack of interest. Staring hard into the magazine she proceeds to press her hand over her waist and measure the distance from front to back with her fingers. Despite being thin as a rake she exhales a longing, sigh.

TRISH:
Do you think I could reach eight and a half stone with an extra workout on the Sunday? And maybe a few more salads and a few less glasses of wine. But it’s just so tempting when you’re out with the girls…

Trish may as well be talking to the wall. Richard is sat on the edge of the sofa in deep thought.

RICHARD:
You know, it’s going to be quite something seeing all the old gang again. Ten years. Damn. Shame I haven’t been able to get hold of Alice but it should still be fun for the three of us.

Richard raises his eyebrows.

RICHARD:
I’m sure it will be fun for them hearing about how far I’ve come. An 80k a year job, head of a finance department, in the shape of my life and happily married to my beautiful, blonde bombshell.

TRISH (GIGGLING)
Oh, thank-you pumpkin.

Richard smiles and then begins to clench his fists together.

RICHARD:
It’s certainly more than my parents ever thought I’d amount to. Condescending bastards. (puts on rough voice) “Listen boy, try not to screw up too badly. That would be my best advice to you.” Lousy drunk half-wit.

Richard stares into the air.

RICHARD:
Look where I am now you bum.

Trish sighs.

TRISH:
Rich, I told you not to talk about your dad. It is so boring.

Richard regains his calm. Stands up and begins to admire himself again.

RICHARD:
Yeah your right, sweet-ums. It is boring. And now worth me wasting my breath on. Now it’s a long drive I’m in for which means I most likely won’t be home till late.

Trish throws her hair over her eyes and then swings it back to the top of her head. A fun game for her.

TRISH:
No worries,  Babe Central. I’ve got the girlies coming over for a Sex and the City marathon. I even brought us some wigs to match the lead characters. I’m going to be Charlotte seeing as I am the thinnest…

Richard shuts his wife up with a kiss to the forehead. He grabs his bag and then makes to leave.

RICHARD:
I’ll see you later chicken.

ALICE AND THE STRANGER (IN THE HOUSE)

INT. ALICE’S HOUSE. DAY.

Alice has just stepped into the small, cost house which she shares with her boyfriend. She closes and locks the door behind her.

Even in the utility room which she has just entered, art work is present everywhere. An indian rug hangs from the wall.

An Indian warrior puppet is rested right next to the phone. We focus for a moment on the puppet’s soft blades.

Alice places her bag on the cupboard beside her. She is about to head into the kitchen when a sound disturbs her. She listens carefully and identifies the noise as running water. She tuts and rolls her eyes before marching off upstairs.

We stay downstairs however and move slowly into the kitchen.

INT. ALICE’S HOUSE / KITCHEN AREA. DAY.

We move in close to the plastic box located in the centre of the kitchen table which we immediately recognise as the time capsule.

Surrounding the box and scattered all over the kitchen table are dozens of photos and notes.

INT. ALICE’S HOUSE / UPPER FLOOR AREA. DAY.

Alice approaches the sound of the running tap. Grumbles to herself light-heartedly.

ALICE:
This is what you are marrying into girl. A man who forgets to turn off the tap.

Alice walks past a bedroom. Doesn’t notice that the door is open.

We stare inside at the contents of the room. There is various artwork, a small bedside television, a large bed and various clothes on the floor.

Shrill of the soundtrack..

The black hooded stranger rises from the sea of clothes, her upper body shooting up from the floor. Her hidden face stares in Alice’s direction.

The figure gets to her feet and walks briskly out of the room. In her right hand she is carrying a cloth which has been dyed with a blue coloured substance.

INT. ALICE’S HOUSE / BATHROOM. DAY.

Alice approaches the tap which is firing water down the drain at a furious tempo.

She twists the handle so that the tempo slows… takes it down to a cool level so that the water now calmly pours from the tap. The frantic sound of the running water fades.

ALICE:
Toilet seat down. No eating in the living room. Switch off the lights when you leave a room and always turn off the tap. Is it really that hard.

Alice continues to lightly grumble as she throws her face into the sink and sprays herself with water.

She breathes in tightly through her nose.

Closes her eyes..

Comes up towards the mirror..

We notice someone in the background..

Alice opens her eyes..

And meets the stranger’s reflection… a pale feminine face with a piercing set of brown eyes.

Alice opens her mouth to scream…

But is covered by the white cloth..

The stranger smothers Alice’s face with one hand and takes her by the waist with the other.

Alice elbows, kicks and attempts a backwards headbutt. Misses.

The stranger moves the cloth up to her nose..

Alice feels the sick concoction enter her body. Her body goes limp. Her eyes blink repeatedly.

We see the room from her perspective. Flashes of items mixed in between flashes of darkness. Until there is just darkness.

Alice falls into a heap beside the stranger’s legs.

The stranger moves close towards Alice’s body. Takes in her face and begins to softly stroke it.

Then rises to her feet. Takes her by the arm and begins to roughly drag her outside the room.

EXT. ALICE’S HOUSE / UTILITY ROOM. DAY.

Downstairs the phone begins to ring…

ALICE AND THE STRANGER (OUT ON THE ROAD)

EXT. COUNTRYSIDE PUB / CAR PARK AREA. DAY.

We focus on the same necklace belonging to a fast walking woman with a slim, enviable build. Her face shows us that this is Alice (27). Her hair shorter, eyes wide, teeth showing.

Her right hand is gripped into a fist and her left hand swings her bag to and fro.

She reaches her car and we see for the first time that she is parked outside a cosy countryside pub.

She leans against the bonnet looking up at the sky. Breathes in hard. As she breathes back in she jumps off the ground with joy shaking her first in the air. Continues to jump up and down in little fits and bursts – her voice caught somewhere between laughter and tears.

EXT. BLACK CAR. DAY.

A figure wearing a black cloak watches Alice through the windscreen.

Hands tap rhythmically on the stirring wheel. Bright red nail varnish. A woman.

On the dashboard we see the sixth form school photo of Alice. The same picture that was buried in the time capsule.

We edge closer towards the image accompanied by an unsettling, animalistic soundtrack.

EXT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

Alice eventually tires from her rapid burst of adrenaline. Stops for a second to regain her breath. Looks on at the sight of the pub and begins to wave her right hand in front of the structure in a taunting motion.

ALICE:
Goodbye forever.

Alice turns and steps into her car.

INT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

The bag is immediately chucked into the back-seat as Alice picks up her headset from the floor. She tinkers with the device before placing it around her head.

Switches on the car radio. An upbeat pop song blares from the speakers. Alice dances to the beat whilst strapping on her seat-belt.

Takes one last look at the pub through her window and laughs heartily.

ALICE:
woooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!

Alice turns the key into the ignition and sets off home.

INT. STRANGER’S CAR. DAY.

The figure in black brings her finger tapping to a halt.

Sets the car in motion.

Follows Alice out of the car park.

INT. ALICE’S CAR – DRIVING THROUGH COUNTRYSIDE. DAY.

Alice is mouthing along to another jubilant pop record. Sways her shoulders from side to side. Bounces her head back and forth.

Hears something in her ear-piece. Turns the volume of the radio down.

Her face lights up.

ALICE:
Mum! Hey. Mum. Take one guess as to why I’m calling you from my car at 11 am on a Friday morning.

Alice’s eyes glow. Eagerly awaiting for the response.

ALICE:
Ill. No far from it. I’m feeling on top of the world.

EXT. COUNTRYSIDE ROAD. DAY.

The stranger’s vehicle is tailing Alice coming up closer and closer towards the back of her car.

INT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

Alice is oblivious. Still dancing to the song as she listens to her headset.

ALICE:
Yep you guessed it. I got the call about an hour ago. The Museum of Modern Art. I’m being invited down for a special meeting next week. I may never have to work in a depressing pub ever again.

EXT. COUNTRYSIDE ROAD. DAY.

The stranger’s vehicle is about an inch away from touching Alice’s car.

INT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

Alice is distracted by the appearance of the stranger’s vehicle in her rear-view mirror. Frowns at how close it is.

ALICE:
Yeah mum. I’m sorry but I’m going to have to call you back when I get home. There is some drunken weirdo practically driving into the back of my car. Okay yep. I’ll call you later. Love you too. Bye.

Alice tears off her headset and stares again into her mirror. Holds her hand into the air expressively. Presses down on her horn.

INT. STRANGER’S CAR. DAY.

The figure in black has their hands gripped tight on the stirring wheel. Reacts to the sound of the horn by pressing on her own and pushing up and down repeatedly. The sound is deafening.

INT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

Alice reacts.

Sound of the radio is mixed in with a horrible, horn sound.

Alice switches the radio off rolls down her window. Sticks her hand out and motions for the vehicle to come past.

She checks her speed. Motions again for the driver to come past her.

ALICE:
Come on. Drive past me you drunk asshole.

The horn sound stops. Silence.

EXT. COUNTRYSIDE ROAD. DAY.

The stranger pulls up in the middle of the road.

INT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

Alice shakes her head and tries to refocus on the road ahead.

EXT. COUNTRYSIDE ROAD. DAY.

Alice’s car turns a corner and moves out of sight.

The wheels belonging to the stranger’s vehicle begin to spin on the tarmac.

INT. STRANGER’S CAR. DAY.

Figure in black suspends her leg in mid-air and then gently taps the edge of her foot onto the pedal.

Harder..

And harder…

Speed increasing… 30… 40… 50…

Fingers tight on the wheel..

Foot accelerating harder on the pedal…

60… 70… 80…

EXT. COUNTRYSIDE ROAD. DAY.

The stranger’s vehicle driving full pelt towards Alice’s car.

INT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

The radio is back on. The smile on Alice’s face has returned. She sings along to a familiar record.

Quick glance into the mirror..

Spots the vehicle rapidly approaching from the distance…

Her smile fades..

EXT. COUNTRYSIDE. ROAD. DAY.

Stranger’s vehicle rapidly approaching Alice’s car.

INT. STRANGER’S CAR. DAY.

We observe the speedometer. Approaching one hundred per miles per hour.

INT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

Alice’s mouth is wide open with fear.

Sweat pours from the outside of her palms.

The song on the radio continues, an upbeat record nicely contrasting with the chaos of the situation. Alice is gripping too tight on the wheel to hit the off switch.

We see her nostrils flare..

Her foot shaking on the pedal..

She looks in the rearview mirror and observes the rapidly approaching car showing no signs of slowing down its manic pace just three hundred metres on the road behind.

ALICE:
Jesus Christ. What the fuck is wrong with you? Slow down, asshole. Slow down.

Alice beeps on her horn..

Her leg shaking even more frantically…

She almost loses her footing on the pedal..

The car veers from side to side…

But she quickly maintains control…

EXT. COUNTRYSIDE ROAD. DAY.

The stranger’s car is approaching and fast.

Two hundred metres…

One hundred metres…

It looks set to crash straight into the back of Alice’s car.

INT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

Alice screws up her face. Gulps in hard. Fears for the worst.

EXT. COUNTRYSIDE ROAD. DAY.

Stranger’s vehicle approaches…

Approaches the back of Alice’s car…

Switches to the side of the road at the last second..

Speeds past. A blast of horn noises emnate from the vehicle as it flies into the distance. Becoming a dot in a matter of moments.

INT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

Alice slows to a halt.

Breathes in and out at an uneasy rate. Holds her hands to her heart. Tries to steady her shaking leg.

Gradually calms down.

Begins to type into the phone. 9 – 9 …

Thinks better of it and cancels the call. Besides she didn’t have chance to catch a number plate.

Alice sighs before veering her car back into gear.

EXT. ALICE’S DRIVEWAY. DAY.

Alice pulls up outside her home in between a series of vehicles.

INT. ALICE’S CAR. DAY.

Alice has the headset reattached to her head. Her body is no longer shaking.

ALICE:
I don’t know. Maybe God was trying to kill me so that my work would become more successful,

Alice listens and laughs.

ALICE:
Yes well. I think I’d favour my life over that…

Alice’s voice trails off…

EXT. ALICE’S DRIVEWAY. DAY.

Parked up two vehicles down is a black car which we recognise as belonging to the reckless stranger.

We approach the vehicle with the strange, animalstic sound playing as before.

INT. STRANGER’S CAR. DAY.

Inside it is empty.

Lying on the passenger seat is the sixth form school photo of Alice aged seventeen. A menacing red cross has been drawn over the face.

The soundtrack reaches a high pitched squeal before lightly echoing and then fading out.

 

 

NO BODIES FOOL – THE OLD LADY’S HOUSE

The old lady has a phone pressed to her ear.

OLD LADY:
Yes, that’s 2 Creswell Drive. That’s right now. Thank you very much. See you shortly, yes. Bye.

As she puts the phone down we notice that the phone cord has been cut in half.

Old lady walks into another room.

We stay with the phone. On the table  next to it there it is a stapled document present. We look closer and see that it is a script. On the front it reads – “No Bodies Fool” by “CLAIRE DUNGHAM”.

EXT. SCHOOL GROUNDS. NIGHT.

Richard wastes no time in climbing the gate like a true athlete.

EXT. DESOLATE LANE. NIGHT.

Richard makes his way across the pavement looking for his car.

INT. OLD LADY’S HOUSE / KITCHEN. NIGHT.

Jane is sat with her face pressed against the table. The kettle can be heard boiling in the background.

Behind Jane is a well decorated wall of photographs. We take in a few of the pictures… all featuring Claire Dungham.

Claire Dungham at the birthday party which no-one came to.

Claire Dungham in her dress at a home-made prom.

Old lady enters the room…

Walks up behind Jane…

Creeps up behind her back…

Reaches out with her hand…

And gently taps Jane on the right shoulder.

Jane jumps up in fright.

Which makes the old lady jump up in fright.

OLD LADY:
oooo, sorry deary. I didn’t mean to frighten you.

JANE:
No that’s okay. I’m just a little jumpy.

OLD LADY:
Well that’s to be expected. Now I made the phone call like you asked.

JANE:
Oh thank-you. Thank-you so much.

Jane thinks of Richard.

JANE:
You know if they’re going to be here soon I should go out and wait in the car. Otherwise my friend will think I’ve gone missing.

Old lady turns to frown but returns to face Jane with a delightful smile.

OLD LADY:
As soon as he sees the police car pull up, he’ll put one and two together, I’m sure of it. Now the kettle has boiled and you look like you could really do with a strong cup of tea. Help calm those nerves, deary.

Jane considers all this.

JANE:
Yeah you’re right. And so generous. I can’t thank-you enough for this.I was really in a bad way back there. Just that image of…

Old lady motions with her hand for Jane to calm down.

OLD LADY:
It’ll all be over soon, sweet thing. Don’t you worry.

Jane manages to crack a light smile.

JANE:
Wow, thank-you. You’re so kind.

Old Lady falls into a trance for a moment as her hands grip tight on a nearby chair.

OLD LADY:
I was brought up to be generous. And I brought up my own girl to be kind. But what good did it do us, really…….  we both just spent our whole life being shat on…

Jane is disturbed by the old lady’s change in language. She watches on as the old lady squeezes tight onto the chair, her veins throbbing.

Then like nothing had happened the old lady returns to normal.

Goes over to make the tea.

Jane looks concerned but has more pressing issues to be thinking about.

Old Lady places a tea bag in a mug. Then reaches into an upper level drawer for a small glass tube. She grabs hold of the tube and pours the entire liquidy contents into the cup. Pours in the hot water and milk.

OLD LADY:
Sugar, sweetie?

Jane is brought out of her dark thoughts.

JANE:
Yes. Please. Two would be great. Wake myself up a bit.

Old lady sniggers to herself like a pig.

OLD LADY:
Oh, don’t worry. This’ll give you a kick, alright.

EXT. DESOLATE LANE. NIGHT.

Richard finds his car. Goes to open the door. Locked. He shakes his head in disbelief. Looks through the windows to see that the vehicle is empty.

RICHARD:
Fuck, Jane, fuck. You couldn’t follow one simple, god damn instruction.

Richard begins to kick violently against the side of his car.

INT. OLD LADY’S HOME. NIGHT.

Old lady passes the mug of poisoned tea to Jane and takes a seat next to her, obtaining a court-side view of her craftwork.

Jane takes a deep, soothing breath and then dives into her mug.

Old lady watches her with a delightful expression.

OLD LADY:
That’s it girl, you drink up. I sure hope Richard is okay down there.

Jane swallows the tea. Pulls a disgusted expression at the taste then realises what the old lady has just said. Her eyes widen with terror.

JANE:
I never told you his name…

OLD LADY:
Well you didn’t have to honey. It was all written in the script.

Jane’s bemused expression soon turns to one of pain as she falls off her chair, holding her fingers to her neck. Her insides begin to choke. The pain settling in thick and fast.

Old lady watches her struggle with a peaceful expression. Calmly takes a swig of her tea.

Sound of the door opening.

Old lady changes tact. Smile transforms into a scowl.

OLD LADY:
Harry, is that you?

HARRY DUNG (62) wonders in with the enthusiasm of  a school-boy. He is dressed young and had died his grey hair, blonde creating an ugly effect. His eyes reveal a once handsome man and he is in great shape.

Harry looks at the body and can hardly contain his excitement. He jumps into the air and then begins pointing at Jane whose coughs are beginning to sound more and more hideous.

HARRY:
Well, yabadabadooo, you got her, you got her good.

Old lady takes out a pack of cigarettes and begins to light up. The kind old lady act has all but disappeared.

OLD LADY:
Yeah and no thanks to you. You were supposed to here for the start of this scene. Didn’t you read the script you moron?

Jane crawls towards the table leg and tries to drag her way up. Her face is all screwed up and her breathing is all over the place.

OLD LADY:
I only sent you to get some supplies. What the bitchin hell happened?

Harry shrugs.

HARRY:
I got lost.

Jane loses her grip on the table leg and falls to the ground back first. Her body flops like a fish out of water. None of this has any impact on the bickering, old couple.

OLD LADY:
You got lost! How long have we been living here for fuckwit?

Harry is too used to his wife to care about the abuse. Instead he takes a seat and watches Jane fight for her final few breaths. His eyed dart excitedly at this spectacle.

HARRY:
Boy, I’d love to have been there when she realised.

Old lady holds her head high. Inhales deeply.

OLD LADY:
Well, yes that was quite a magical moment.  And I have to say I played the kind old lady role with the type of conviction that even a certain Bettie Davis would have been proud of. When this all gets made into a film, I just hope I am played by a classy lady like Meryl Streep.

Harry smacks his legs as they jump up and down before him.

HARRY:
Oh yeah, I can see that. And maybe I could be played by George Clooney.

Old lady shakes her head.

OLD LADY:
Harry, don’t be an idiot. Mr George Clooney would never accept a cameo role.

Their voices fade into obscurity as we watch Jane’s eyes slowly begin to close.

NO BODIES FOOL – JANE MEETS THE OLD LADY

EXT. DESOLATE SCHOOL-SIDE LANE. NIGHT.

Jane continues to sway from side to side, looking on the verge of falling over.

The car keys slip from her shaking hand. She goes down to pick them up. Comes back up and knocks into an old lady.

JANE:
Oh, I’m sorry. I’m sorry. Sorry. I’m sorry. Sorry.

The old lady is taken back at Jane’s appearance and behavior.

OLD LADY:
Oh that’s quite alright, dearie. Say, you look as though you’ve seen a ghost.

Jane gulps in hard. Tries to control her breathing. She leans one arm on the old lady’s shoulder and then crumbles to her knees.

Old lady struggles to support her weight.

OLD LADY:
Golly.

Jane tries her best to make eye contact with the old lady but her shaking body makes it a difficult task.

JANE:
Listen, there’s a psycho right.. has put a box in a head, a head in a box. My friend is inside the school, he’s trying to save another friend, psycho is in the school, I’ve got to, car and the phones, and ring the police. Ring the police.

Old lady feels Jane’s temperature with a concerned expression.

OLD LADY:
Listen, lady. You are in no fit state to call anybody, let alone the police.

JANE:
But I’ve got to… head in a box, got to call the police, call the police, c call the police.

OLD LADY:
Okay you calm down now. Listen my house is just across the road. You can tell me exactly what has happened and I’ll make the call to the police okay.

Jane nods her head up and down and lets the old lady guide her across the road.

JANE:
Head in a box.. got to call the police.

EXT. SCHOOL FIELDS. NIGHT.

Richard’s figure can just be made out as he runs across the field.

He uses a distant lamp-post to help guide his footsteps.

RICHARD:
God damn psychopathic nut-job.

NO BODIES FOOL – TOO LATE, RITCHIE BOY

EXT. SCHOOL FIELD / WITH RICHARD. NIGHT.

Richard approaches the school grounds towards the end of the field.

His arms pump wildly…

His legs stride at full force…

EXT. SCHOOL GROUNDS CAR PARK. NIGHT.

Jane wobbles over to the school gate…

Her movements are erratic. Her legs dragging her body from side to side.

She climbs the gate but it is a struggle.

EXT. SCHOOL MAIN ENTRANCE. NIGHT.

Richard picks up speed as he strides towards the school entrance.

Tries his hand at the door. Locked. He grits his teeth. Tries again. Nothing gives.

Richard notices the light on in the corridor but can’t see anybody inside.  He bangs on the windows but to no avail.

Richard begins to smash his angry fists at the window…

Notices an envelope on the ground..

Halts his temper to pick it up. He takes the envelope in his hands and holds it up against the window so that he can use the corridor light to see.

His name is written on the front. Richard tears open the envelope and takes out a letter. Begins to read.

RICHARD (READING)
Too late, Ritchie Boy. Another one bites the dust. Don’t worry about yourself though – the main character never dies. Or does he? I guess you’ll have to wait to find out.

Richard screws up the piece of paper and looks further into the envelope. Takes out three small photos.

One is of Alice with a cross drawn over her face.

One is of Alan with a cross drawn over his face.

The third picture is of Jane with a question mark drawn over her face.

Richard drops the envelope in a flash..

Sprints back in the direction of the field.