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View Full Version : ADRIFT (VD entry)


iembalm
02-14-2004, 02:13 PM
FADE IN:



EXT. PACIFIC SHIPPING LANES - DAY

A small fiberglass lifeboat floats on the calm sea.



EXT. LIFEBOAT - DAY

Two small CHILDREN in pajamas and a WOMAN in her late
twenties sleep quietly as dawn breaks. All are severely
sunburnt wherever skin is exposed. A burlap sack filled with
oranges and a makeshift rainwater collector seem to be all
they have for sustenance. The three wear red life jackets,
and there is a fourth one lying on deck at the stern.

The woman grows restless in her sleep, then startles awake,
wide-eyed but still dreaming.

WOMAN
Fire!

The children sleep on, oblivious. The woman composes herself,
stretches, and makes a 360 degree scan of the horizon. Her
face tells the tale: no ships in view.

She picks out an orange and begins to quarter it with a small
knife from her pocket. Her hands suddenly stop as she makes
the last cut.

She whirls, sees the empty life jacket.

WOMAN
(whispers)
Oh, God. Daniel.

She frantically looks over the sides, then further out from
the boat, shielding her eyes from the rising sun.

WOMAN
No, no, no!

The children wake and clutch at her, not understanding her
panic but feeling its effects.

The woman seizes the life jacket, clutches it to her chest,
lets out a piercing, plaintive wail, and collapses to her
knees.

The little girl is first to understand.

LITTLE GIRL
Where's daddy?

The boy is very small. He reaches out to touch the life
jacket, and his hands find his mother's arm. The three
embrace, sobbing. After a time, the woman regains control.
She kisses the children's foreheads and smooths their hair.



EXT. PACIFIC SHIPPING LANES - DAY

The boat and its inhabitants are very small on the wide blue
ocean.



EXT. LIFEBOAT - LATER

The woman dozes in the blazing afternoon sun. She has allowed
the children to have the small bit of shade at the bow.

LITTLE GIRL
Mama, is it time for water yet?

The woman checks her watch.

WOMAN
It's a little early sweetheart.

She sees her child's face, the sunken eyes of dehydration.

WOMAN
Well, just this once.

She gingerly lifts the plastic detergent bottle that serves
as their rain-catcher. As her other hand picks up a tin cup,
the clink of metal on metal makes her look down. Inside the
cup is a gold ring and a folded piece of paper. Her breath
catches in her throat.

LITTLE GIRL
What is it mama?

The woman deftly empties the cup's contents onto the deck.

WOMAN
Nothing, baby. Wake your brother
for me.

She pours a small amount of water into the cup, then as she
watches her daughter gently kissing the boy's face, a little
more.

The woman makes her way to the bow with the cup in her hand.
She very carefully gives half of the water to each child,
then tips the cup to her own mouth and swallows the remaining
drops.

She kisses them both, then stands and surveys the horizon.

LITTLE GIRL
Will a boat come soon?

WOMAN
I hope so, sweetie.

The children lay back down, and the woman sits facing away
from them. She slides the ring over her left thumb and
unfolds the paper to reveal a pencil drawing of one large
heart and two smaller ones. She flips it to a few lines of
print on the reverse.

MAN'S VOICE
(V/O throughout)
Sweet, darling woman.

The woman puts her hand over her mouth and looks behind her
at the boy and girl, already sleeping.

MAN'S VOICE
Yesterday I stole water from you.
My heart is strong, but my body is
weak. I won't accept survival at
that price. Tell the children when
they are old enough to understand.

The woman crumples the letter in her hand and tightly closes
her eyes, her face a silent, acute storm of rage and grief.

She regains herself, and reads on.

INTO --



EXT. PACIFIC SHIPPING LANES - DAYS LATER

A huge cargo ship dwarfs the lifeboat and a motorboat racing
towards it. Five white-uniformed men are blown by a stiff
wind as they stand upon the rescue boat's deck, and a small
contingent of crewmen watch from the side of the freighter.

MAN'S VOICE
I have not always taken the
honorable course in our marriage.



EXT. LIFEBOAT - DAY

The bag of oranges is nearly empty and the water jug rolls on
its side as the woman is assisted into the motorboat, her
face and parched mouth blistered.

MAN'S VOICE
You were always the strong one,
always our anchor.

The two children, unconscious, are lifted by crewmen, one of
whom gently separates their hands.

MAN'S VOICE
I regret much, my love, but not
this.



EXT. FREIGHTER'S WATERLINE - DAY

The children are carried up a rope ladder to the deck of the
cargo ship. Sailors place their mother in a cloth sling to be
hoisted up.

MAN'S VOICE
Precious woman. Wife. Fight for
them because I could not.



EXT. CARGO SHIP DECK - DAY

She is led to a bench, and the captain places a blanket
around her shoulders. A crew member hands her a small paper
cup filled with water.

MAN'S VOICE
Let me go.

As the woman opens her hand to take the water, the wind
catches the letter, which unfolds as it clears the railing
and falls to the sea.



INT. PACIFIC OCEAN - DAY

Seen from below, the letter drops onto the surface, and
briefly floats next to the underside of the lifeboat.



EXT. CARGO SHIP DECK - DAY

The woman sips her water as activity around her returns to
normal.

CAPTAIN
(O/S)
Note the time, Lieutenant.

SAILOR'S VOICE
(O/S)
Eighteen February, sir. 1430 hours.

She stares out at the wide blue sea.

FADE OUT:

kcshc
02-16-2004, 10:39 PM
nice! :)