Stars and Whales

Stars and Whales

A Screenplay by Stars and Whales

When a man leads a team of scuba divers to investigate a mysterious, stone road in the depths of the ocean, he and his daughter are swept into a larger universe.


Stars and Whales

An Original Script by Sam Bova

EXT. McCarthy Base - Night

It is a stormy night. The ocean roars beside McCarthy Base: a small, gray building, without windows, on a hill above the raging waters. Dark clouds swallow the stars.

Superimpose Titles:

McCarthy Base, 1984, Coast of Florida

INT. McCarthy Base - Night

In a dimly lit room, four men surround a table, playing cards. We focus on OWEN HURST, a gruff looking man with a cigar hanging out of his mouth.


What’d you got, Timmy?

We see TIMMY, a skinny, Asian man with a timid face and a plain, black cap.


C’mon, let’s see it…

Timmy reveals two cards; they are a 10 and a 4.

Owen cries out in joy, slamming his cards on the table.

They are a 8 and a 6. We see Owen snatch some bills from the middle of the table.


Game over, boys!

Timmy speaks now. His voice is nasal and high-pitched.


Yeah, well, Owen, we’d best get

some shut-eye. Especially you;

we need you alert to guide

us in the right direction.

Another man, CALDER, agrees. He speaks with an accent.


He’s right, Owen. I don’t

think you understand the importance

of our mission, and as our leader

you need to be fully aware of what

could become of us, should we fail.

We’re going to see things, down

there, Owen, things we can’t

possibly comprehend. Our job

is to find the purpose of that

mysterious stone “road,” and put some

stock in the legends which chilled

our bones those many years ago. Do

you hear what I’m saying, Owen? You’re

too focused on your drugs and games on

this winter night. So, I know I’m not

in charge, but call your wife and get to

sleep. We’ll all do the same.

INT. McCarthy Base - Owen’s Bunk - Night

Owen lies flat on his hefty bunk bed, in an all gray room with no windows. We hear the crack of thunder and patter of rain. Owen has a phone to his ear, and it is ringing.

Intercut with:

We see Owen’s wife, Sarah, on a couch beside their daughter. She picks up the phone.


Hey, babe.


Hey hon. How’s Crystal?


She’s right here with me.

Crystal, you want to say

hello to daddy?

Sarah puts the phone to Crystal’s ear. The little girl is blond, cute, innocent.


Hi daddy.


Hey there, pumpkin. I’ll be

home soon, ok, just a few more

days. I love you.


I love you too, daddy.

Sarah puts the phone back to her ear.


Hey, so I’m going to let you

get to sleep, I know you’ve

got a big day tomorrow.


Yeah. Yeah, I do. Goodnight,

Babe. Take care of yourself.


I will. Goodnight, Owen.

INT. The Hurst Home - Stairs - Night

SARAH HURST (early 40’s, brown hair) and Crystal lie together on the couch. Crystal (Age 6, blonde hair) sits with a rubik's cube on her lap, solving it slowly. They chat softly.


Mommy, is daddy okay?


What do you mean, sweetheart...?

What makes you think he’s

not okay?

CRYSTAL (eyes still fixed on rubik’s cube)

Well because before he left

he told me he’s going to change

the world, but he also before

told me the world isn’t safe.

So if daddy changes the world,

would he not be safe?

Sarah pauses, unsure of how to respond.


Daddy is changing the world,

sweetheart, and he’s doing it

for you. You’re his Crystal,

and no matter what, he is coming

home to you.

Crystal gives a little smile, still not looking up from her rubik’s cube. A few moments pass, then she looks up. We see that the rubik’s cube has been solved. Sarah gives her a quick hug.


You’re a very smart girl, Crystal.

A problem solver, like your father.

You certainly don’t get it from me.

Anyway, you’d better get to bed. It’s

way past your bedtime.


Okay mommy. Goodnight.

She walks up the stairs (filmed from behind, low lighting). Music builds. Quick cut to her foot that slips. Camera is placed at base of stairs as Crystal tumbles down. She is lying on the floor as a small puddle of blood coagulates around to side of her head. Top down shot that slowly moves upwards while tilting slightly, mother rushes to Crystal.

INT. Hospital - Morning

The phone beside a hospital bed rings. Sarah looks up from a chair at the foot of the bed, and gets up to pick up the call. We see Crystal in the bed, asleep. Owen is the one calling.

Intercut with:

Owen is leaning against a tall tree beside a ship. Several other men are waiting around the ship.


Hey Sarah. We’re about to board

the ship and head out. Just want to

say a quick little good-bye, I’ve

gotta get going.


Wait, before you go, Crystal fell

through the stairs last night.

I’m in the hospital now for a

concussion! A concussion!


Oh s**t! Is she going to be okay?


I hope so. She’s asleep now.

Doctor Gliese says she’ll have

a scar across her head the

rest of her life. I’ll try

to wake her so you can talk to her

real quick before you go. Anyway,

don’t worry,the doctors are taking

good care of her.

Sarah puts a hand on Crystal’s cheek, and wakes her.


Hey, sweetie. Daddy is on the

phone. He wanted to talk to you

before he heads out to the ocean.

She puts the phone to Crystal’s ear.


Hi daddy.


Hey, how’s my little girl



I’m okay.

She pauses.


Be safe, daddy.


Thanks sweetheart. I’ve gotta

go change the world, now. Tell your

mother I love her for me. You take

care of that brain of yours. You’ll

need it.


Bye daddy.

With that, Owen ends the call and rushes over to his irritated crew and onto the ship.

INT. Ship - Atlantic Ocean - A few minutes later

The ship heads rapidly out to sea, while the music plays. Owen and other men put on scuba gear. Suddenly they stop, and Owen shouts out commands. The music is foreboding and mysterious.


Alright, let’s go! If you find

yourself separated from the group,

return to the boat immediately! If

you can’t find the boat, well…

you’d better pray you’re truly

alone down there.

Owen jumps into the water. It is a foggy morning, and the sun is hidden behind the clouds. Eight other men follow Owen into the water, making nine total.

All together, they wade through the murky water, headed downwards.

We see Owen, scanning below him, searching. The group of scuba divers is reaching a depth of nearly 500 ft. The water is murky and hardly visible. No sea-life is present.

The water only gets darker as they dive deeper. The divers look at each, and nod, then proceed into a very dark, misty water. Then, though hardly visible, they find it. The mysterious stone “road.” An ominous theme plays.

Owen leads them downward on a slope, there is a visible gradient between a somber blue on the top and desolate black on the bottom, which the team is slowly engulfed into, one by one (camera settles on the empty gradient for a short time after the team has disappeared)

Owen and his team are surrounded by darkness, with only their headlamps being luminous, but not seeming to light up the surrounding environment (camera faces crew as they wander in the darkness)

They follow the stone road into the darkness which it leads to.


(in slight panic) I never thought

it could get so damn dark.

Intercut conversation


Just keep focus on your compass

An electromagnetic force surrounds the objective. Their conversation is over radio comm.


I can’t even see my damn compass!

Intercut to Timmy


Calder, do you know where the

hell we’re going?

Intercut to Calder


Of course not, Timmy, that’s what we’re

here to figure out.


That, or Mr. corporate here

knows exactly what we’re after,

but his buddies in black

suits think we’re stupid divers

who just want a paycheck for their

dirty work.

Intercut to Owen


Shut up! Both of you! We have a job

that does carry a shitload of money,

especially if the find’s big, so

let’s get this done

(he says this in a mendacious tone as

he stares at his barely glowing compass positioned on his right arm with a pennant of his daughter clipped onto the side. He’s changing the world for her, but there’s a sense of apprehension on the subject)

(Cont.) on Owen


You’ve got me all wrong chief. Timmy’s in

it for the cash,

Intercut to Calder

I’m here to (sarcastically) “change the

world” (laughs)


(grudgingly looks at his compass, but his

face slowly turn to one of subtle fear)

We’re approaching something big.

There’s an ominous ambient score playing as the group slowly wade through the dark. The stone walkway appears to be the only existing thing along with the crew. (shot is “shoulder mounted” on a crew member wading behind another, obscuring forward view and emphasizing thing to his side) Water particles begin to rush violently past them as the darkness turns into a murky green and stone surfaces appear around the walkway, until a mere glimpse of the ship fades into the shot.

Cut to Calder’s face as Owens walks to halt ahead of him.


S**t…I… I don’t think money matters


Shot from behind the crew of the derelict, a massive ship with a gaping hole in the middle, with whale bones malformed to form a star. The “tomb of echoes” then plays, a mysterious and dark mood fitted with a whale call for tempo.


Damn, I’m not so sure about this, boss.


(stares at pennant) Nobody’s sure

about anything. We just have to keep

going. Stay on the path, our compasses

will get scrambled once we get close.

Close up of Timmy and Calder keeping their feet on the path. Someone pulls out a waterproof camera to photograph the derelict. There are three shots, each with a glaring flash. The final one serves as a transition to the interior of the vessel.

INT. The Sunken Boat - Atlantic Ocean - A few moments later

The interior has several holes (large enough for a whale to fit through) casting a dim light into the inner chamber, which has a lowered center surrounded by a moat of darkness that slowly flows into the middle. Ambience is eerie, yet beckoning. The ship interior is skeletal in texture, with several star shaped gears.


Where’s that light coming from?


I don’t know.

Owen’s theme plays as Owen makes his way to front of his crew. A bright light beckons him. To the disapproval of his crew, he proceeds into the separate chamber where the light shines ever brighter.


Owen! Hey! Pull it together, man!

Owen ignores his request. We see Owen alone now, advancing towards the light. He wades forward until he is directly in front of a circular force of light. He reaches his hand out into the light. It goes directly through; there is no pain. He looks back to where his crew waits anxiously. Then, he turns back to the light and swims through it.

We now see a distant shot of Owen. The boat is nowhere to be seen. Dark blue water surrounds him, nothing but ocean for miles. We see a closeup of Owen. He looks distressed. He looks in a panic as he quickly looks upwards to find the ocean surface. He can’t see the surface from where he is. He swims upwards, then, to reach the top and find where his boat is.

The camera follows him as he ascends rapidly. Several minutes pass, and still no sign of the ocean surface.

He talks to himself.


There’s no way I wouldn’t have

reached the top yet...where am I?

He looks to his left and his right. The camera scans around him on all sides. Nothing but dark blue ocean. Again, he looks in a panic.

He continues to swim skyward. There seems to be no end. There is no end.

He looks back down. There, a humongous whale swims casually to where Owen is. The camera follows the whale’s ascent towards Owen. Main theme plays as we see a distant shot of the whale headed towards Owen.

It stops in front of Owen. It is the biggest whale Owen has ever seen, on television or in real life. The whale seems to stare at Owen for several seconds. Owen studies the whale intently.

Then, the whale turns and swims downward again. Owen follows it. As they get farther down, Owen sees the mysterious stone road come into sight. But it is different here. The stone blocks are much larger and create a much thicker road.

Owen follows the whale along the road for a few minutes. Then, Owen sees something else.

A brightly lit crystal ball shimmers against the dark blue ocean water. Owen approaches it, and when he arrives next to it, he stares intently at its beauty.

We see a close up of the crystal ball. Its luminance grows at a quick rate. Suddenly, the whale covers the entirety of the shot, and when it exits the shot, Owen is gone.

The camera zooms outward to reveal the enormity of the ocean where Owen ended up. It gets bigger and bigger, with no end. All of the water is a dark blue colour. Large titles expand as the main title plays:


Created by Sam Bova

Written by Sam Bova and William Flannery

Music by John Williams

Directed by JJ Abrams

EXT. Crystal’s Home - Morning, 50 YEARS LATER

Superimpose titles:

50 YEARS LATER, Washington D.C

Superimpose titles:

November 11, 2034

INT. Crystal’s Home - A few moments later

BEEEEEEEE! An alarm clock blasts.

A hand reaches over from her bed to shut it off. It is the hand of:

Crystal Hurst, now age 56, tied up blonde hair, pretty face, sprawled in bed, black jeans, white t-shirt. She is alone. She sits up. Her hair's a mess.

INT. Bathroom - A few moments later

Crystal brushes her teeth, then ties up her long hair into a ponytail.

EXT. Crystal’s House - a few minutes later

She steps outside. The street and sidewalk is damp and covered in colourful leaves. It is a small, Washington D.C neighborhood. The air is cold.

INT. Crystal’s House - a few moments later

She heads back inside. She grabs a cup of coffee, a puffy, blue jacket, and a suitcase. Beside the suitcase is a picture of her father, whom she stares at with a paralyzing sense of grief before breaking herself from the trance. Then, she goes outside again, gets in her car, and heads down the dampened street.

EXT. Brent’s House - Proth - Morning

Superimpose Titles:

The Planet Proth

Brent’s Home is small, wooden; the ground surrounding it is a sand-like material...looks like a hut in the middle of a sandy desert, but the sand is more the colour it would be at a beach than say the Sahara Desert.

Seated on a bench in front of his house, we see BRENT WHARWOOD, an average-sized kid for his age (15 years), with pale skin, moppy, black hair, and looks like a human, but one who has spent little or no time in the sun.

Brent is waiting, and watching. He is looking out at Proth; one large city making up the entire population. It looks like one large city, upon a hill. But something looks off about it. Proth was not a large planet, so one city carried all of its inhabitants. However, outside of the city lie places unknown. Nobody who had left the city had ever returned.

War engulfs the city. Both of Brent’s parents are fighting in the war. The city is divided; once a shining city, now divided in opinions and ideas. Brent looks out at this disjointed city, and he is troubled by the sight. But he is waiting. Waiting for Old Irt to come strolling up the long, windy, dirt pathway to his home, like every day.

EXT. The Prine - Proth - Same time

The camera shoots down the slope from Brent’s home and speeds through Proth; the city is called the Prine. Loud music plays as we speed through the Prine, seeing war, malice, death, hatred, black smoke swallowing the atmosphere, and the disfigured city from above.

The city is fallen. It is clear that it would be wise for Brent to look elsewhere for the future of their people.

The camera now shoots back to fall upon Old Irt, strolling up the long, dirt pathway to Brent’s home.  

Now, in Brent’s point of view, we see OLD IRT from a distance, walking up the pathway. He is very old, and pale; he looks similar to Brent, but wrinkly and with a wispy gray beard. He shoots Brent with a dazed stare that shows not only his age, but a sense of wisdom.


Good morning, Brent.

Intercut to Brent


Irt! I’ve been waiting all morning for

you! C’mon, there’s something I have to

show you. Something important.

Old Irt’s complexion becomes stern.


Show me.

Brent gets up from the bench and Old Irt follows him inside.

INT. Brent’s House - A few moments later

The interior of Brent’s house is very small. It looks like a mixture a small apartment and an old, worn cabin in the woods. Another boy is seated at a table in the middle of the room, about the same age as Brent.

This is Brent’s brother, TILL - dark, ruffly hair, somewhat overweight, not enormous, but certainly nearing there.

Brent sweeps everything off of the table onto the floor, excluding a white piece of paper with a large black smolder in the middle.


Last night, Irt, I was up on the roof,

watching the night sky.

We see a flashback to the night before. Brent is on the roof of his house, sprawled out and staring upward to the dark sky.

BRENT (over the flashback)

I was thinking about the research

we‘ve been doing, with the “rocket” and

everything. I was thinking maybe we’re

doing it all wrong. I was falling asleep up there, but then I saw something strange

in the sky.It was like a black smudge,

blended into the dark sky surrounding it.

But it was different. It looked to be

moving, like a spirited whirlwind. It

was like nothing you’ve ever seen.  

All the while he is talking, we see what he describes; the black whirlwind, twinkling stars surrounding it; they whisper hope for the future.

We see Old Irt’s face now, very intense; his complexion shows us that he is fascinated, excited even, but doesn’t entirely show it. He wants to know more.

Till leans forward.


Well, it sounds to me like a

storm blew by last night.


No. I don’t think you understand,



No, I don’t think you understand,

brother. You and old man wacko

are living in an alternate

reality. The world doesn’t work

as you see it. We stay put and do

our utmost to protect ourselves.

And, to do that, we fight. We

respect the system. We don’t

trust old nuts to tell us how

our generation should be lived.


Time is better spent actually

fixing the mistakes of the past,

rather than fighting and arguing

about how.


You know what, pops, you can

get you and your dusty a*s

out of this house!

Brent turns to Old Irt, ignoring Till.


Irt, let’s try to find it again

tonight. I think this could be

our way out of here. If we can aim

for it with your whole..[gestures]

“rocket” idea,...who knows where

it’ll take us.

Irt nods.

Suddenly, we hear the door slam open.

We pan quickly to the doorway. Bright light pierces the shot. A dark silhouette of a man towers in the doorway. He steps through the light, into Brent’s house, into the shot. Till jumps up.


What the hell is this! Get

out of--

The tall, skinny man pulls out a gun and shoots him in the stomach. Brent and Irt quickly put their hands over their heads.


S**T! [stares at man in panic)

W-who are you? What do you want?!

The man smirks. His name is SILAS BOYLE, tall and skinny, thin mustache, a well-known figure of Proth for his outspoken advocate of the Proth regime, to create a society where all do their part for the betterment of society and kill those who don’t respect the fighting, dutiful ways of the city.


What do I want? Well quite

simply I want you dead...but I

can’t kill you because your

parents are such...wonderful

benefactors to our great city’s

continued success. HmHmHm. But,

I couldn’t help myself from at least

killing the overweight one. After

all, he’s not in any shape to

influence the progress we’ve

been making as of late. Anyway,

the reason I’m here is actually

because of your dear parents...

they’ve gone missing...and I need

you to find them for me.

INT. NASA Headquarters - Washington DC

NASA headquarters is a busy place. Brilliant men and women running amuck with papers flying from their hands and sticky notes painting their frizzled hair. Amidst the calamity is Crystal, who manages to keep a calm and steady pace as she exits the elevator, coffee cup with hot chocolate in hand. She makes her way over to her console, which is littered with solved sudoku puzzles, notebooks rife with mathematical equations, and other conquered enigmas.

Her co-worker, JONATHAN smiles at her from his clean, organized desk.


For a minute, I thought you

had finally made the conversion

to coffee.


I’ve told you a million times, I

don’t like the taste of coffee,

makes my head hurt and makes me want

to puke, just like you.


[sighs]You’re still a little girl

at heart, for a… what, 111



[laughs] Shut the hell up.


Still, I wouldn’t make it through

the day without my  first cup of joe.

Even then, I’m still nowhere near as

productive as you. I mean, we wouldn’t

be anywhere close to making it to Mars

if it weren’t for you.


Eh, I just do my work, that’s all.


Do your work? I take it back,

you must be a damn robot or


Crystal stares at Jonathan as if her mind were drifted somewhere else; she then cuts him off casually.


Hey, did you look at the black

hole research I sent you last


Jonathan rears his head back and sighs


Ah yes, how could I forget!

Crystal’s face shows a brief rush of excitement


That’s your one flaw. You and

your koooky sci-fi mysteries.


John, I’m not kidding. We-


We still have work to do

on the mars project, work

that I must remind you, has

a bunch of government snobs

riding on our asses to complete

by a deadline.

Crystal has a slight glance of unease on her face. She begins to drink copious gulps of her hot chocolate while Jonathan talks. We hear things inside her head.


You take care of that brain

of yours. You’ll need it.

Crystal now closes her eyes. A faint buzzing sound gets increasingly louder and more piercing.


Thanks sweetheart. I’ve gotta

go change the world now

The Hot Chocolate has been burning Crystal’s lip, but she hasn’t realized until now. She drops it on her, but doesn’t seem phased by it.


Holy s**t, Crystal! Looks

like you drank a little more

than you can swallow. Let me grab

a napkin for you


No, it’s fine. I’ll wash up

in the bathroom. Guess my

old lady hands couldn’t keep

the cup steady.

Crystal gets up and head for the bathroom, she turns back as she’s walking and yells at Jonathan.


Hey, this doesn’t mean I’m

switching to coffee!


I didn’t ask!


[laughs] You’re an a*****e!

Jonathan playfully flips her off.

INT. BATHROOM - a minute later

Crystal dries her face in the mirror, looks around the bathroom, and peers at the jagged scar etching across her head. For a moment, it seems completely black, and there was a spirited mistiness to it, as if a deep black trench. She blinks, then it turn to normal upon her shocked realization. However, a small amount of blood seeps from the very edge of the scar, while more comes from her nose.

EXT. The Prine - mid-afternoon

We see Silas, Brent, and Old Irt. They are now accompanied by two nameless men. They walk through the Prine. The sun is hidden behind the clouds, and the streets of the Prine are chaotic and unruly.


We know where your parents

went, not where they are. We

don’t intend to go after them.

That’s for you to do, and for us

to make you do. They left the city.

Where to, we do not know. Of course,

no one has ever been outside of

these walls, so what you will

find, is unknown to us.


You’re sending us to our death!


Oh, who said anything about “us.”

You are to go alone. This old man

won’t be accompanying you. And it

is the loss of your parents

that we are risking here. Not you.

Shall you fail your task, we will

be saddened by your parent’s absence,

but certainly not your own.


Maybe I can find serenity

in not seeing your ugly mug.


[toothy smile] Maybe you will.

Silas pushes Brent forward towards the wall. It’s rife with graffiti and signs of war. There is one large double door painted a bright red colour that has worn away into a rusted brown. There’s writing on the wall, which reads “CH    E T  E  R  ”. The letters are also worn away.

We see a distant shot of Brent walking towards the wall. The sky is a murky brown, as if all of Proth’s evil, it’s death and devastation, has polluted the once bright blue sky. There’s distant lightning strikes in the sky, which cannot be discerned from the erupting missiles. Brent must face a broken world in search for his parents. Alone.

He is at the door now.


Wait sonny

EXT. Outside of the Prine - several minutes later

Old Irt and Brent are walking on the outside, a somewhat barren, olive coloured forest (not many trees) with murky green pools scattered about. The air is acrid, and Old Irt coughs a lot. A creature that looks like a miniature cross between a kangaroo and an ox is drinking from the radioactive liquid. As Irt’s condition worsens, he falls to the ground coughing. Brent bends down to assist the old man, when he notices a hole in the sky.


Look Irt! It’s the smudge I

saw the other night. Look! Do

you see it! Ah, it’s no use.

We’ll be stranded out here to

die with nothing. Nothing!

Brent stares at the black blob in the sky, his eyes fill with tears as they gleam with a warming glow of hope.


Hope. We have hope.

Irt gets up and stares forward


It’ll be impossible to find your

parents under these conditions.

Hell, we probably won’t find them

under any conditions. We’ll need

to find shelter to wait this

lightning storm out, we’ll

work up a plan in the morning.

Irt now stares at the black hole. The camera focuses on the ebony sliver, which transforms into a scar as the camera pans out to reveal Crystal.

INT. NASA Headquarters - Conference Room - late afternoon

Crystal is sitting alone in the conference room. The sun is setting in the distance, flooding the room with a somber gold light. Crystal is staring at a photo of her and her dad when she was little.

CRYSTAL (whispers)

Where’d you go?

Jonathan knocks on the door and enters carrying two drinks.


I brought you some normal

chocolate milk. Figured you

couldn’t burn yourself with

your old lady hands.



Crystal takes the drink and takes a sip, she then spits it out.


Ugh, is this mocha?

Jonathan laughs and exchanges her for the real chocolate milk.


[playfully] You rat b*****d.


Hey, is that a picture of your dad?

Crystal hands him the picture.


Geez, that must’ve been a hundred years ago.

Jonathan looks at Crystal’s saddened face.


Sorry, I didn’t mean to-


It’s okay, I just-. Jon, you know

about the black hole research I’ve

been doing on my spare time.


You mean our spare time, yes.


Have i ever told you about

when I hit my head on the stairs

and got this scar?


No, no you haven’t


I remember after hitting my

head, I was….swimming in some

sort of, dark, cold void. There

were stars on the sides, in my

peripheral vision, but…. It

was completely black ahead of

me. I remember swimming through

the blackness, it felt like..

water but I wasn’t getting wet.

I could also breathe. Then I saw

something...something on the other

side of the void. It looked like a

planet, and I could faintly hear this crying,...then silence. I remember  

my mother telling me I was unconscious

in the hospital, but… felt so



Crystal, come on! Don’t tell me

you’ve been pulling me aside from

our work all these years based off

a...a dream.


It wasn’t a dream, Jon! Look, I

know it sounds crazy, but my dad

disappeared shortly after and I

never knew why. I had to go

50 years without knowing, without

having him with me! My whole life

went by without him, but recently

I’ve been...I’ve been having visions,

I’ve been hearing him.




I know, Jon! But, I’m telling you

this because I trust you. I think

something’s going on and I need

your help. I need you to trust me



Okay, look, we have a board meeting

soon, we’ll talk about this later.




EXT. Outside of Proth - Forest - Very Early Morning

Brent and Old Irt are awakened by movement outside of the little wooden shelter they had constructed. An awkwardly shaped door conceals them.

The early morning sun seeps through the cracks of the shelter. Brent looks at Old Irt, fear in his eyes.

BRENT (whispers)

Irt, what do we do? What

is that?


Just be still, my boy,

very still…

They lay, frozen on their leafy mats.

We see, through the cracks, a hairy beast, brown in colour. It is moving slowly and making a guttural, metallic pur as it creaks by.

It is silent for several seconds, all we hear is the breath of the thing as Old Irt and Brent lay frozen in their place.

It is very close, and it is focused on the hut.

Old Irt motions to Brent.

He points to the wall. It is an easily removable piece. Brent maneuvers toward the wall piece slowly, on his knees.

Then, he freezes as he looks in the direction of the door. A large, beastly eye is staring directly at him.

He pushes the wall piece off and makes a run for it. Old Irt follows suit.

The creature destroys the hut, and we see that it is the size of a bear, somewhat reptilian, somewhat alien looking, and brownish-black in colour with dark hair aligning its back.  

Brent puts his arm around Old Irt to support him as they run forward. The old man is struggling to keep up with Brent’s increasing pace.

The creature begins to gain on them.


C’mon Irt, you can do it.

I know you can. Return to

your younger body, the way

you were when I first stumbled

upon you those many years ago.

Irt’s manner becomes reflective, as if deep in thought whilst his legs continue to move.

Old Irt stops, releases himself from Brent. He turns to the beast.


Brent, continue directly

forward for a mile. And


He faces the full impact of the creature as it pounces on him. We do not see the gore of his death.  


Noooo!!! Irt!!

Loud music drums into our souls and makes us cry. We hear a pinch of Owen’s Theme, mostly unrecognizable as that.

Brent turns and sprints, sobbing.

Through hundreds of trees, it is all a blur.

Suddenly, Brent slows his pace and pushes aside some branches blocking his path.

We see a clearing, and a steep cliff. Brent walks forward, rubs his eyes.

We see a distant shot of Brent walking towards the brink of the cliff. We cannot yet see the bottom.

He nears the brink of the cliff. He peers down, and we see instant shock cover his face as he sees what is there.

It is now revealed to us. It looks as if a sea of black; a spiralling, misty, and spirited sea of infinite black.

Brent hears the voice of Old Irt in his head.

OLD IRT (voice)


We see a close-up shot of the spiralling blackness. It seems almost alive.

OLD IRT (voice)

Brent... jump

Brent stares into the infinite black. It was like the smudge he’d seen in the sky the other night. Were his parents there somewhere?

Loud music, we think Brent is going to jump.

He doesn’t. He turns from the cliff, and there he sees the beast, walking slowly towards him.

Brent steps back closer to the cliff. He almost slips; a piece of rock falls down the cliff and into the blackness. He regains his balance.

Brent has a long knife in his pocket. He pulls it out. It is a desperate attempt, even though he knows it will likely be futile.

The beast charges.



Brent jumps barely over the edge. The beast jumps after him.

We see an angle of Brent’s hand stab the long knife into the wall of the cliff, stopping his fall. He holds onto it with both hands.

The beast, however, plunges into the black hole and disappears within it. The camera remains on the sea of black for a few seconds, lingering in silence on its mysterious nothingness. It looks more alive than ever.



We see a distant shot of Brent hanging from the knife. He begins to pull himself up.

It is a struggle. He can’t reach the top from where he is. He is too far down, and all he has is the one knife to hold him there.

The knife slides downward. It cuts through the dirt, furthering Brent from safety.

Brent can do nothing to stop it.

Several different camera angles show Brent continue to slide down towards the sea of black.

This continues until he is directly above the black hole. Brent looks down. The black looks infinite, as if it stretches for eternity to no end.

We see one of his feet disappear in the black.

Brent released one hand from the knife. He must try something.

He claws at the dirt. It is somewhat soft, he can shovel it out slowly.

We see a close shot of his left hand as he reaches as high as he can and claws dirt out of the wall and clings to it. He slowly pulls the knife from its place.

Half of his body is in the black hole.

Quickly, he stabs the knife as high as he can above the crevice that he dug by hand. He pulls himself slightly upwards. He reaches up again and claws out more dirt.

He grimaces of fatigue. Sweat smothers his forehead.

He digs his fingers deep in the dirt and clings to it. He stabs the knife above. He continues to do this.

When almost halfway up, he stops. Old Irt’s voice echoes in his head.

OLD IRT (voice)

Just jump, Brent. Jump.

Brent’s eyes are bloodshot and watery. His arms tremble. His left hand is bruised and masked by dirt.

Brent’s theme plays as he narrows his eyes and clenches his teeth. His continues to work his way up.

Finally he nears the top. He throws himself up and over, collapsing on the ground. He cries, the impact of everything that had just happened hitting him in that moment.  

Then he gets up, and what does he do? He runs. He looks clearly incredibly fatigued, but in no shape to do so, he runs through the forest, stepping through the scattered, murky-green pools, and to the wall.

He goes through the door and continues to run, all the way to a wooden house, somewhat larger than Brent’s house. This house is isolated from all others, in its own little corner of the Prine.

It is Old Irt’s house. Brent goes inside, slamming the door behind him.

INT. Old Irt’s House - the Prine - early afternoon

The inside of Old Irt’s house is desolate. The camera falls upon shattered glass, a cigar, and what looks to be a homemade deck of cards.

Brent creeps slowly through the house.

He hears a noise upstairs. It is a distant thud, as if someone had dropped something heavy.

Brent slowly proceeds up the stairs. He carries his trusty knife in his right hand.

We see an angle of Brent from the top of the stairs.

Now at the top, Brent looks in all directions. He hears the noise again, louder this time.

He looks in the direction of the noise. A dusty door is directly across from him.

He makes his way towards the door. Puts his hand on the knob, twisting it slowly, and…

He pushes it open, holding his knife up. He sees nothing instantly, but then looks down to see a man and a woman, strung up in the room. They have tape covering their mouths.

His parents.

Brent rushes over to them, using his knife to cut them loose.


S**t, you guys, what the

hell? What happened? I

thought you had run off,

away from the Prine!

Brent’s mother is named MARTHA, his father, KIP.

Kip grabs Brent by his shoulders and slams him against the wall.


Your b***h-a*s friend...that

old goat, that’s what happened!

Why are you always hanging around

him anyways, Brent! You working

up some conspiracy against

your mother and I...or...or,

the government?? Despite all the

great things they’ve done to

protect this family?


What happened, Kip, you

want to explain to me what

Irt did to you before accusing

me of being apart of it? Damnit,

Kip! And mom, why is this dick

the first thing you turned to

when dad died? This is all wrong!

Our society is doomed, you

people have no conscious!

Martha looks like she wants to say something, but doesn’t.


Yeah, I’m the dick...your old

friend sent some monster

after us, drove us out of

the Prine, straight into his

little trap...tied us up,

took us back here to rot! And

I’m the dick.

Kip punches Brent in the face. Martha reacts, but then stops herself.  


C’mon Martha we’re leaving here,


Brent is on the floor, his nose dripping blood now. Kip grabs his wife’s arm and pulls her out of the room. Martha gives her son a hopeless glance before they are gone.

Brent looks up from his pain. There is more to see in this room. A desk is in the left corner, covered in dozens of papers and a journal.

On the wall, there is a black and green suit. Next to it, a drawing of a blue and green planet.

It is a scuba suit. Next to it, a drawing of the Earth.

Brent gets up and walks over to the items. There is a tag on the suit. It reads:

Property of Owen Irt Hurst

Fade to next scene.

INT. NASA Headquarters - Conference Room - evening

The board meeting takes place as the sun is setting. The scene begins with a sufficient amount of sun peering into the room. Jonathan and Crystal sit anxiously as board members of NASA take their seats around the table. Almost immediately, there’s cigarette smoke tracing the room. One man in particular, Director Martin Shrill, takes a seat at the head of the table. He’s a fairly old man with thin, large spectacles and well-combed silver hair and a stern mein.


Ladies and gentleman of the

board, we gather here for the

purposes of discussing the future

of our Mars project. Mr, Andrews.

I believe you had some developments

for us.


Yes, um..we’ve progressed further in

our research of inertial dampen---

Jonathan's voice is drowned out by the return of the high-pitched shrill. We focus on Crystal wincing in pain when black mistiness, somewhat wet, suddenly awakens from her scar. She places her fingers on her scar to reveal the black, misty liquid, which upon closer examination, appears to shimmer in places. She is alarmed by Shrill’s voice.


Ms. Hurst, do you have any

developments you’d like to

share with us?


Um, no….I… may I use the

restroom, I don’t feel

so well.

Jonathan gives her a concerning, yet curious look. Crystal glances at him in a somewhat disconcerting way.


Surely you can spare a minute

to share your research. I know

you work so hard on all of

these projects.


No, I’m sorry Director Shrill…

I...oh god, that hurts!

Crystal drops to the floor, Jonathan goes to help her, but as he looks up, military police shut and lock the conference room door.


What the hell are you doing?

We need to help her!


She can handle herself. She’s

a smart girl. (he smiles

disingenuously) A problem solver.

Let’s see her solve her way out of this…..predicament.


What are you talking about?


Shh, give her time. Watch…..

Crystal recuperates, but blood drips from her nose.


See, as expected. Her bond to

their world is unbreakable;

physical proof of a gateway

stable enough to allow human travel.


What? What the s**t are you-


He knows, Jonathan. They all do.


Yes. You see, we’ve picked up a

lot of interesting things from our

research teams over the years.

Things far more interesting than

whatever front we display for

the general public. That’s

how we beat the Russians to

the moon, how we landed a rover

on Mars, and now it’s how we

will unlock the power of

interstellar travel, and you,

Crystal, were the gateway all

along. If we had not come across

your fantastic research and your…

extreme determination with the

project, we wouldn’t have made it

this far.

JONATHAN (to Crystal)

Did you know?

CRYSTAL (To Shrill)

Why now?

The sun sets completely, the room turns black.


Because, my brilliant flower,

you’ve disclosed our project

to Mr. Andrews and now, we must

begin early. It’s time to change

the world.

At these words, Crystal yells in pain again.


This planet has always been looking

for a place amongst the stars,

somewhere we can escape the ruin

and devastation of our own race.

As members of the government, we

must protect humanity’s interests.

We’re so very sorry for causing you

pain, Crystal, but you must walk in

your father’s footsteps. You must

make his sacrifice once more.


(in pain) were there

Jonathan prepares to attack Shrill, but Crystal stops him. She is perfectly calm now.


Jon, it’s okay. (To Shrill) I

have….seen where the black hole

is,’s not related to our



What do you mean, Crystal? Tell me.


The black hole we’re looking

For, it isn’t accessible to us in

outer space. It doesn’t exist out



Then where? Where is it!


We’re living in it, and it’s tearing

into us

EXT. Outside of Proth - Dawn

We see Brent, walking towards the wall once again. He is carrying Old Irt’s journal.

Silas sees him and runs to stop him.


Hey, Brent! Where do

you think you’re going!

Your parents requested

you be terminated upon

being found.

Brent sprints to the door, opens it, and continues to run out into the forest.

Silas and his men stop in their tracks before the door.


It’s okay, let him go.

He didn’t die the first

time, he surely will

this time.

We see Brent again, running through the trees, all the way to the cliff. He stops at the edge, and looks down into it.

Camera angle of Brent’s face; we see a flashback of him with Old Irt...

Brent and Old Irt are sitting atop the city wall, looking out at the forest...then, the forest had many trees, and tall mountains towered over them.


You want to know the most

valuable lesson I’ve learned

in my long life, Brent? Look.

See the mountain? Picture

yourself on top.  See the

world around you, and go. Go

explore what you do not know,

and reach it. See the trees,

and the wind, and the whales

in the sky, passing by in the

night, and follow wherever they

may lead. See hope that is left,

and run to it.

End of flashback…

We see Brent again. He takes a deep breath, then jumps into the sea of black, disappearing quickly within.

INT. The Black Hole - A few moments later

Pan down from miles of black to find Brent, spaghettified in form, stretched into a long, spaghetti-like strand. He is surrounded on all sides by darkness, and billions of stars. He is such a small piece of this immeasurable place.

He descends through time and space. It is as if he has become one with the infinite black surrounding him.

He sees the universe spread out before him. It is a lapse of time, eternity, and even though he is nothing within the infinity of the black hole, he is everything and everywhere at the same time. He is nothing, but yet he is everything. He is nowhere, but he is everywhere.

We see a distant shot of Brent. He seems to be falling, with nothing but black below him for eternity. But far in the distance we see a bright light.

The blackness that surrounds him feels like water, but he isn’t getting wet.

He is falling through this void of darkness towards the light.

Suddenly, a whale comes from the light, into the shot. It seems to be swimming upwards toward Brent.

We see a distant, side shot of the whale headed in the direction of Brent. The main theme plays lightly.

The whale is directly below Brent. It stares at him for a few seconds, then turns around and seems to swim downward with Brent.

They are headed towards the light. We see a shot that captures the enormity of the whale, and also the scale of this infinite black which surrounds them, as we see the size of the whale in comparison to it.

The light is getting closer. Brent examines it. It looks like a tunnel...a white hole. The black hole’s mirror image.

The whale swims around and covers the entirety of the shot. When it exits the shot, Brent is gone.

INT. NASA Headquarters - Shrill’s Office - evening

Crystal and Shrill are alone now in Shrill’s office.


Listen Crystal, we appreciate

your work in this, but your

friend Jonathan will not be

included. I need experienced

astronauts, people who have

been to space. He doesn’t

shape up.


He doesn’t shape up, huh? You

think someone who said he’d die

for this project doesn't’ shape up?

Someone who said he would die for

me? I need his help. You need his

help. Note this for future reference,

Shrill: You need passionate people

like Jonathan Andrews if you want to

go jumping in black holes.


My flower, this project marks

the beginning--the beginning

of a new time...a time where

the world will come to see

the ingenuity of our labour!

If Jonathan Andrews was to be

the one to reach into this vast

unknown, surely much more should

hasten be to staked as possible.

Right then...I will allow you to

take this fool to space. The

black hole will welcome him.


That’s all I ask, Shrill.

Thank you. [pauses] Y’know, I could

tell you more about black holes,

if that’s what you wish.


(leans forward) Tell me...



I felt it in my scar this

morning. Something alive has

entered the black hole, this black hole

Which our entire milky-way galaxy is

Immersed within. It has found its way

through, intact, and it very well

may be within our midst as we speak.

Whatever it is, it is alien,

and perhaps it comes from

an entirely different universe.

The nature of this black hole

is one which will swallow

anything that will

swallow it up into infinity

of black, an eternity of time.

It is a portal to eternity past

and eternity future. A portal to

unlimited answers, for your benefit,

and for humanity's benefit, as


Shrill smiles uncomfortably.   


Ok, here’s what I want you

to do now. Send everyone not

involved home. We’re going to

send a crew to Mars, and you,

your pretty boy Jonathan, and a

few trusted others, selected by me

personally, through the black hole.


(pauses for a moment in shock) Yes,

sir. I have to go find Jonathan.

INT. NASA Headquarters - a few minutes later

Crystal is rapidly walking through the halls of NASA to find Jonathan.

She looks everywhere. She can’t find him.

EXT. NASA Headquarters - a few moments later

She heads out to the parking lot to see if his car is still there. It is. Then she sees him, on the ground beside a trash can, beat to a pulp and bleeding out of his nose and mouth.

She rushes over to him.


Oh my God, Jonathan, what

Happened to you!



Jonathan tries to sit up. Can’t.


Jon, you’re gonna be

okay. Let me get you back


Crystal grabs Jonathan’s shoulders from behind and pulls him onto his feet. She puts an arm around him to support his weight, and they proceed slowly forward.

INT. NASA Headquarters - Crystal’s Office - ten minutes later

Crystal is cleaning up Jonathan’s cuts. She gives him a glass of water.


Jon, who did this to you?

John continues sputtering

CRYSTAL (hysterical)

Answer me damn you!

JONATHAN (sputtering)


Crystal laughs tearfully and hugs Jonathan. She then proceeds to clean him up until he can answer her more clearly.


Ok Jon, tell me. Who did

this to you?

Jonathan sits up.

JONATHAN was Oscar and some

of the engineers...I

recognized one of them...



But Oscar’s a good friend

Of Shrill’s...why would

He have it out for you?

And I don’t think Ralph’s

Ever talked to you except

That one time at the Christmas

party when you bought all

the guys beer.


Well, it was them. But

it doesn’t matter. It

was probably something I

said, I’m always saying

dumb things without thinking

about how people might

take it.


No Jon, it does matter. I

think Shrill might have sent

them to beat you up so you

wouldn’t be able to join me

on the expedition. Which,

about that...I talked to

Shrill, and you can go

black hole jumping with



Well, in that case, the

pain’s all gone! Provided

that the b*****d doesn’t try

and shut me up again.

Jonathan tries to stand.


(grunts) I’m good to go!

It’ll be like jumping

into a nice round cup of

straight black coffee!


Ok, Jon,... well I need

to have a conversation with

Shrill. I think he’s up to

something. Jon, if you can,

I have a lot to take care of,

could you make some calls, tell

everyone not involved in this

mission to go home. Here’s the

list of everyone involved…

She hands a piece of paper with a couple dozen names on it. She starts to walk out the door, then looks back and smiles.


Bye, Jon.

She walks out the door. Jon collapses back onto the chair and sighs. Then he picks up the phone and dials.

INT. Shrill’s Office - a few minutes later

Crystal slams the door to Shrill’s office open and barges in.


Damnit, Shrill, you sent

those guys to beat up


Shrill smiles disingenuously.


Yes, yes I did. How

did he handle that?

Did he need you to

wrap him in a fluffy

blanket with some hot

cocoa, kiss his booboos,

and tell him he’s going

to be okay?


Actually, Shrill, he

says he’s still ready to

die for this mission! He’s

ready to risk it all! You’re

not going to stop him. He’s

not like you, he’s not in it

for the glory and money. He’s

in it for a love of science,

a keen interest of the universe,

the stars, the black holes.

Do you know what his favorite

animal is? It’s a big, damn

whale! He thinks big, lives

big, wants to die big and

wants to see big!


That’s nice. I already

said he can go.

might want to take a closer

look at his injuries. He

might not be the same Jonathan

you see right now, in...a couple

of hours. Just a thought.

You may be wrong about me

not being able to stop him.

I can do whatever I right

well please. So get out of

my office. I’m tired of your

silly bantering. We have work

to do.


What do you mean he might

not be the same Jonathan!

what the hell did you

do to him, Shrill! You’re

not the master of the


She walks aways, then turns around.


Actually, you’re the master

of a certain part of it, it’s

called hell. Which is where

you’re going. But you’re not

the lord of the universe,

and you never will be. I

know who is Lord...master

Of the universe. He created

it. His name is Jesus Christ.

Shrill gives his creepy smile again.


Oh, actually, I think I am.

Crystal storms out of his office. She goes straight back to Jonathan, in her office.

INT. Crystal’s Office - a few minutes later

Crystal rushes into her office to Jonathan. He is not there.

INT. NASA Headquarters - a few moments later

She walks rapidly, almost in a run, looking for Jonathan. He is nowhere to be found. She goes back to Shrill’s office.

INT. Shrill’s Office - a few moments later

She barges in again.


Shrill! Where the hell

is Jonathan?! I need to

find him, and you’re coming

with me.

She grabs Shrill by the arm and pulls him up.


No, I don’t care about

your inapt boyfriend, stop

it, I’m not going with you.

Crystal punches him in the nose.


Coming now, b***h!?

Shrill touches his nose. It is bleeding. He gets up and follows Crystal.


Damn you.

They go outside with flashlights.

EXT. NASA Headquarters - a few minutes later

It is very dark outside, and windy. They search around the building with their flashlights. Nothing.

INT. Crystal’s Car - moments later

So, they hop in Crystal’s car and she accelerates down the road.

They drive a couple of blocks.


Where are you going??

Suddenly Crystal slams on the brakes. She jumps out of the car. A black, misty liquid is in the middle of the road. It looks like a body is in the middle of it.

We cannot make out whose body it is.  

Shrill gets out of the car slowly.

Crystal approaches the blackness.


Jonathan? Is that you?

Shrill remains behind Crystal. He looks somewhat frightened.

Crystal walks up to the body. We see a shot of her foot, stepping in the black liquid. The liquid hisses and a mysterious black mist seeps out from it.

The body rolls over suddenly, alive.

It is Brent. He is the size of a dwarf. Brent’s theme plays. We see that he is a slightly deformed version of the boy we saw on Proth...he looks somewhat aged, and also as if he had been exposed to some sort of acidic, burning chemical on his face.

Crystal steps back, hand over her mouth.


Oh my god...



Brent looks at Crystal curiously. Crystal examines him. She sees in his eyes that he, himself, is afraid, and means no harm.

Shrill runs back to the car. He drives away without Crystal.

Crystal takes a deep breath.


Do you talk?

Brent’s eyes are fearful. He doesn’t respond.


Where are you from?

Still no response. Crystals bends down.


At least tell

me your name.

The camera zooms in on Brent...we go close up to his face, then, he speaks. Main theme plays.



Brent clutches Owen’s journal at his chest. He tosses it to Crystal. It has the black liquid on the cover.

Crystal looks at Brent curiously, wonderment dancing about in her eyes. She opens the little book to its first page.

We see what it reads as Old Irt’s voice can be heard over the shot.

Owen/Old Irt (voice)

To my home, to Earth: I

hope this message finds

your planet prosperous,

and in good times. As for

me: my past does not matter.

What happened to me was

extraordinary. What matters

now is what I do to expand

the knowledge of the universe

and all that dwell within.

In this book, I give to you

my life’s research. May you

use it to do the same. To

whomever’s hands this book

finds itself in, I have

but one further request.

Please find Crystal I. Hurst.

She will know what to do with

this book. And she will know

that the writer of it loves

her very much.

Crystal collapses on her knees. She puts her hand over her mouth. Her eyes roar with emotion.


(sniffles) ...Tell

me more about Irt.

INT. Crystal’s Car - a few minutes later - night

Crystal and Brent drive in silence back down the road to NASA. The black liquid covers Brent’s skin in various spots.

Crystal breaks the silence.


Could I please get your


Brent turns his head. Looks at her.


Brent Wharwood.


I’m Crystal. You’re not

from here, are you Brent?




Can you tell me where

you’re from?

Brent pauses.

He grabs Owen’s journal. Flips to the back of it. There is drawing, by Owen, of Proth, the way he found it those many years ago in the depths of the ocean.

In bold, capital letters, it reads: PROTH.

An arrow points to a small, bright cylinder amidst all the darkness of the water surrounding it.


Proth. (points)


But that’s where...that’s

where...where my dad went out…

that’s where he went missing. So my

dad was living on a tiny planet

in the middle of the ocean? That

makes no sense. Is he still


Brent shakes his head no.

They drive into the NASA parking lot. Crystal parks her car, and they both get out.

INT. NASA Headquarters - meanwhile

Shrill is talking with a group. They look concerned.

Crystal walks in. The entire group goes silent and they all turn and stare at Crystal. Seconds later, Brent walks in behind her.

The group freaks.

CRYSTAL (to herself)

(mutters) Damnit…

CRYSTAL (aloud) (CONT’D)

Hey everyone, meet Brent!

She says this in somewhat of a caustic way.


Conference room. Now!

INT. Crystal’s Office - minutes later

Brent is sitting alone in Crystal’s office.

INT. NASA Headquarters - Conference Room - meanwhile

Crystal is holding Owen’s journal in her hands. She stands on a wooden chair at the head of the table. Everyone else surrounding the table looks terrified, whispering amongst themselves.


Ok, calm down...listen,

I know you’re all afraid,

but you have to listen to

what I have to say. It might

sound crazy, but here at NASA

I know from experience that you

all are naturally adept to crazy.

What I have here is a journal.

It belongs to my father.

Crystal gives the journal first to Shrill. The group gasps, and some whisper to the person next to them.


Now, I’m going to pass this

around. Read the message on

the first page. Flip through

it. Things might start to

make more sense. If you can’t

accept it, then what are you

doing here with NASA? This is

what we do. This is a clue

to us that there’s more to

the universe than we can

possibly imagine. We have some

of the best scientific minds

in the world here, and those

minds will be boggled by what

they may find in this journal.

My father was at the center

of all of this. And some of

you who ever had an ounce of

care for Jonathan Andrews,

may be wondering where he

is. You may be wondering

what has happened to him.

I believe Mr. Shrill knows

where he is, and what happened

to him. I also believe Jonathan

may have found himself in the

the middle of all of this, because of Mr. my father. I ask

you, Shrill, to tell us where

Jonathan is, if you care at all,

not for him, but for this company,

and for discovery within our

universe that we call home.  

Shrill laughs.


Yes, my dear, brilliant little you wish.

He locks his eyes with hers.

Crystal falls from her chair, onto the floor. Her scar burns. It oozes black. We hear the screech within her head, as she doubles over in agony.

We see a flash of what she now sees, in her brain:

INT. Crystal’s Head - same time

She is swimming in a void of black. She swims through the void, nothing but darkness surrounding her. Once again,she is not getting wet, but it is visibly evident that she’s submerged.

Then she sees a bright, distant light.

She swims towards it for several seconds, then in a flash to her right we see Jonathan, mangled and spaghettified. His face screams perturbation.

Crystal screams as we return to the real world.

INT. NASA Headquarters - Conference Room - same time

We see Crystal, in a ball on the floor. The pain has subsided, and on the floor a small puddle of black steams.

Crystal stands up, wipes her eyes of tears.


You’re an evil man. Make

it right!


Mr. Andrews is just doing

his job, my flower. A job

you so insisted he be a part



I’m going to find him.

I’m going to bring him

back. And I’m taking

Brent with me. We will

launch as planned...


A man in the room walks Owen’s journal up to Crystal. The room looks in a state of shock.


We’re coming with you,

Ms. Hurst, if that’s

alright. I was a young

man when your father

went missing. I was

intrigued by the stone

road, and what part it

played in his disappearance.

I grew up hearing stories of

what had happened that day and

it’s been tearing into me every

day since. If there’s one thing

I would want to do with my

life, it’s to know more

about what really happened.

All the great stories of the

past do that for me. Make me

want to know more. Make me want

live in that world, where

things beyond my imagination

are possible. I read this

journal, and it’s like the

stories of my childhood are

true and exist in the

infinite universe out there.

That’s what this has done

for me. I want to go with

you. I want to go reach into

this universe of stories yet


As the man delineates to Crystal, her expression has a kindness too it; her face is amazed and conflicted. Her look says it all. When he finishes, Crystal nods,and smiles, which is partly feigned, but also genuine. Several others walk to the front of the room, shake Crystal’s hand, and give her a nod that speaks for them. She’s frightened, but find comfort in these strangers, these knights of the dark. They are going too.

INT. Crystal’s Office - meanwhile

Brent is standing now, in Crystal’s office. He is looking around the room.

He walks slowly over to a shelf. He is too short to see the top. He grabs Crystal’s chair, and stands on top of it.

He observes the contents of the shelf. A picture of a young Crystal. A rubik’s cube. A picture of a man.

A picture of a younger Owen.

Brent grabs the photograph, looks at it closer. He traces his fingers over the man, as if some familiar warmth was emulated from him. Almost like that of what he shared with the little girl in the photo.

Crystal walks in. Brent jumps, surprised.


Oh, sorry, I didn’t mean to

scare you.

She sees that he’s looking at the picture of Owen.


Yeah, that’s Owe--... Irt.

That’s my father. Did you….

(takes deep, shaken breath

in) know him well?


He was my friend. He

wanted to get me out

of Proth...he wanted us

to do it together. But he

never told me any of this.

He never told me that, in

fact, there was more out

there than our lone planet.

I don’t understand why. It

Was as if he had a plan all that I think

back on how, that whole time,

he knew something I didn’t…

it doesn’t make sense why

he didn’t say anything. I

can only assume there was

purpose for his death, and

his keeping that knowledge

from me.

A paralyzing shock spreads through Crystal. Brent realizes his mistake and begins mouthing an apology, but is cut off by the stunned Crystal.


How… did my father die?


He saved me. He knew one

of us wasn’t going to

make it...we were being

chased by a….a ravenous

beast. We were running,

but he was so old...I called

him Old Irt...anyway, he needed

my support to run. We were

both going so slow, and so

he just stopped. He knew he

was about to die, and he just

told me to keep going, and to

jump, jump into this sea of

black which he somehow knew

was ahead. And now he’s gone.

Crystal looked deep in thought, as if imagining her father, old and frail, doing this heroic thing. Or perhaps thinking of her father as she had known him, a kind man working for a better world for his daughter.


I think I know why he

kept you in the dark. I

remember, as a child, he

he would always tell me that

a personal learning experience,

seeing things with my own eyes, is

better than being told what to

believe. He’d rather me discover

it for myself. That’s how he

wanted me to live my life.

Not believing anything I was

told. Not trusting that

everything I hear is fact.

Because, as he said, some

things aren’t at all what

they seem. Some things need

to be seen with your own eyes.

Brent’s face says it all. He approves of this.


That makes sense.

Crystal nods. Smiles.


It’s late. We’d best get

some...wait, do you sleep?




Do you sleep?’s when you--

Brent looks at her curiously and interrupts her sentence. He laughs.


Of course I sleep!


Oh, I just thought, maybe…

eh, never mind.


Goodnight, Crystal.


Goodnight...where will you



I don’t know, anywhere I



Don’t you want a bed?


No, really. I’ll sleep anywhere.

I’m fine. Back, uh, back home

I slept in the grass outside

my house. Irt did too. If he

were here with me now, we’d sleep

under unfamiliar skies every

night. We’d explore this world

together. Follow the stars

to its edges. Well...that’s what

he said, anyways. Maybe when it

turned out he’d already lived

here, it wouldn’t be the same.

But he always talked about what

we’d do, and how great it was

going to be. And he said

I would lead the way.


Ah, c’mon, Brent, I’ve got

an extra bed at my place.

The hard floor isn’t no

place to sleep. Plus, I can

introduce you to this neat

drink we call chocolate milk.

You...uh, you don’t have that

on Proth, do you?

Brent shakes his head


I’m not going to be on

hard floor. I’ll be just

outside, on the grass.


Well...alright, you do

as you please. I’ll see

you in the morning.

Crystal exits the room.

INT. NASA Headquarters - moments later

We follow her as she strides through the halls of NASA. The building is nearly empty, excluding a few stragglers. She occasionally makes stops to compose herself. The thought of her father, where he’s been all these years, his sacrifice...Crystal pokes her head in Shrill’s office.

INT. NASA Headquarters - Shrill’s Office - minutes later

Shrill is seated at his desk. He is on his computer, typing away at a rapid pace.


I’m just heading out.

You’d better have everything

ready for us, 8:00 tomorrow

evening. Remember, trust is a

luxury you’ve lost.

Shrill looks up from his work. Smiles when he sees Crystal.


Goodnight, my flower.

INT. NASA Headquarters - moments later

Crystal paces towards the doors.

She exits the building.

EXT. NASA Headquarters - moments later

She strolls along to her car, and gets in.

Slams the door shut.

EXT. NASA Headquarters - 15 minutes later

Brent is sprawled out on the grass, on his back. The camera slowly zooms towards him. He is just relaxing, his eyes remain open. They are staring, fixed upon the sky above.

We see it across his face, and in his eyes. His amazement, his puzzlement, his sadness, and his conflict.

We see his perspective of the vast night sky. Millions of stars dance across it.

Brent’s theme mixed with the main theme plays.  

He goes to sleep atop the grass, under the stars.

EXT. Crystal’s House - next morning

Crystal wakes up in her house. It’s fairly small, but an extreme mess. There’s sudoku and jigsaw puzzles littered across her bedroom, but the most interesting puzzle is a 1980 Rubik's Cube encased in glass. Sunlight bathes into the room slowly and hits the cube, shining onto Crystal.

She gets up and stares around her room. The atmosphere of her sullied room is taken in, then she begins to cry. Owen’s theme plays.

She comes across her cube, which she takes into her hand and stares at.

She has a flashback...

It’s 1989, her and her father are sitting on a peaceful grass hill in the middle of the night, the sky is twinkled with stars.


I got you something special.

He hands her a drink. Young Crystal takes a sip and makes a revolted face.


Ew, that’s nasty.


It’s called coffee. Ain’t good,

huh? Here, I got you the much

better version.

He hands her some chocolate milk, which she squeals in utter excitement for.


Crystal, do you know why daddy

has to go next year?

Crystal shakes her head.


Well, daddy has to go on

a real secret mission, a

mission to make the world a

better place for you.


Really? How long will you be



Not long,’ll be some


He scoots Crystal closer to him.


Thing is, my place is here on

the Earth, but you, you were

meant to make things better up

there, amongst the stars.

He points to the stars. Crystal stares in wonderment.


Up there are a million stars that

shine so brilliantly, just like you.

They’ll always shine bright amongst

darkness. That’s what makes you alike

to them, belonging amongst them. And

that’s why they’re so bright and why

we can see them from here.




Yep. And I’ll always be here.

Problem is, the world right

now is a dangerous place. You,

your job is to find greener

pastures, far green and without

a hint of this day’s troubles.

Somewhere out there, with those

shining stars, where you belong.


I don’t want to be away from

you, daddy.


You won’t be. You see, when I

gaze into that vast, dark sea,

one of the stars will be you,

and I’ll always be watching my

little girl change the universe.


Where do I look when you have to



Well, like I said, I’ll be here

on the ground. So, it

I’ll have to….compromise.

Owen pulls something out of his pocket. It’s a present. Crystal unwraps it to reveal a Rubik’s cube.


Thank you, daddy!


All you have to do is keep solving

that for me, and I promise we’ll

always be together, even when you’re

amongst the stars.


I love you daddy.

She hugs him. Owen closes his eyes and embraces her. A shooting star whizzes behind them, into the unknown darkness.


I love you too.

End of Flashback...

Crystal is in her room, the sun reflecting light off of her movement as she sloths her way over to the window. She stares out at the orange glow and puts the cube in her pocket.

EXT. Crystal’s House - moments later

She walks outside and confronts the massive yellow star. She basks in it’s warmth. She knows her place in the universe, and she knows her mission.

She stands, and we see a silhouette of her body against the large morning sun, from behind.

A couple minutes later, we see her walking out towards her car.

She gets in. Drives down the dampened street. Multi-coloured leaves fill the gutters.

EXT. The Virginia Freeway - an hour later

Crystal is in her car, driving, now on the freeway. She is headed to the NASA launch site for the mission, in Virginia.

It is a winding road, and brilliantly coloured autumn trees blow in the wind on the roadside. She drives by a tranquil river, which mirrors the colourful, towering trees and the reflection of her car as she steers by.

Moby’s “God Moving Over the Face of the Waters” plays over the drive.

EXT. Cape Canaveral NASA Space Station - early afternoon

We see a shot of Cape Canaveral NASA Space Station from above. Box shaped, gray launch pads are surrounded by dark green forests, and miles of lighter green fields. A dark blue ocean borders the site.

We are now on the ground, on one of the launch pads. A very large rocket stands among the clouds. On its side, the bolded black letters read:

The Black Wayfarer

We see Shrill. He wears a black coat.

He shakes the hand of another man in a black suit. The air is thick. Background noise is profuse. They converse, but it is hard for them to hear one another.


Mr. Williams, sir. Good

to see you!


(nods) You can call me

Paul. So...we’re finally

headed to Mars.


And the whole world will

witness it.


I will make sure of that,

my friend. We’ve got the

best reporters, the best

coverage in the world, and

from all over the world, to

spread this momentous event

across the globe.


I know you won’t let me



Mind if I start with a

quick interview with you,

Shrill? If you’re too busy,

though, I can go talk to

James first...I know you

have a lot on your hands.


Actually, I can’t think of any

Better way to kick this off, Paul,

than with the brains of this



I would have to agree with


EXT. Cape Canaveral NASA Space Station - a few minutes later

Shrill and Paul Williams are seated beside each other, The Black Wayfarer in the background. We see a news camera pointed towards them, and several men and women standing behind it, carrying microphones and managing the camera.


And...we’re rolling...

We focus on Paul. The cameras in the shot roll, and the interview begins.


I have with me today, Director

Martin Shrill, head of NASA.

Director, thank you so much

sitting down with us today.

I know you’ve got a lot on

the table, in order to actually

get us going to Mars tonight. So

let’s make this quick. Is there

anything you’d like say, Director,

to start us off?

We cut to later in the day. It is evening, the orange-red, boiling sun is making it’s way below the distant mountains, drowning in the horizon, and the clouds boast a mystical colour.

INT. The Black Wayfarer - Cape Canaveral NASA Space Station - same time

Crystal, Brent, three men, and two other women, are in the rocket, in their spacesuits.

EXT. Cape Canaveral NASA Space Station - close island - same time

On a close-to-shore island in the ocean surrounding the base, we see the perspective of several men, with binoculars and cameras, watching from afar.

EXT. Cape Canaveral NASA Space Station - same time

Outside of the rocket, men and women bustle around, doing their jobs.

We hear Shrill’s voice, responding to Paul’s question, over the scene.

SHRILL (voice)

Yes, I do. Not only would I like

to address the nation, I actually

want the whole world to listen

in on what I have to say. It’s

very important to me. This

mission...this Mars mission,

is by far the most significant

event in the history of the

world. There is information

which we at NASA can’t yet disclose

to the public...we have knowledge

for which to confirm in this

voyage. This is the precursor

to intergalactic travel. I’m

here to convince you, as

humans, that we can be

multi-planetary species...

that should Earth someday

become uninhabitable, we

can and will reach further and

further into the universe,

that our species will live

for eternity. NASA is working

very hard, under my leadership,

to cross boundaries, to discover

and understand new concepts, and

to try things my predecessors

would never have dreamed of.

All civilization will eventually

become either multi-planetary, or

dead. Earth is simply our mother...and

there will always come a time when

mothers must say goodbye to their

children. NASA will try to explain

what we’re doing as we do it, as we

stretch further into the universe.

When new concepts are created, such

as that myself and those boarding

The Black Wayfarer tonight know of,

we will use them for the benefit

of humanity as a whole. Now...of

many of these which we choose to

share with the public, you ears

will hear them, but your eyes may

never be opened to understand them.

This Mars mission is only the beginning.

A new age is dawning. I want the world

to know that things happen for a

reason, and that things happen

unexpectedly, that can never be

understood, not by anyone.

We see the rocket, over Shrill’s voice. It blasts off into the clouds. The Black Wayfarer zooms through the sky.

As the rocket ascends, Paul and Shrill conclude their conversation.


Oooooo...k, then... I don’t

quite know what you mean,

but you seem like you know

what you’re talking about,

so I’ll assume your dramatic

spiralling is sensical.

Our viewers should be glad

to know that we have such

big dreams in NASA! I mean,

while I can hardly choose a

breakfast cereal in the

morning, these people are

contemplating the realm of

infinity. Thank you for

being with us, Director.

Best of luck to you and

the rest of NASA.


A pleasure as always, Paul.

We see the rocket exit the Earth’s atmosphere, orbiting into the black of space.

EXT. Outer Space - same time

The rocket is now clothed in a blanket of darkness, millions of stars twinkling in the distance.

The spaceship continues its course through eternal space. The cockpit is pitch black with the exception of one stripe of sunlight landing on Crystal’s face.

At first, the void is littered with alien colors, amaranth gases and blue horizons. But, as the the ship cruises further into the unknown, these colors fade into black waters, with only sparse twinkling stars serving as beacons in the desolate, gelid ocean of dust.


It’s… quiet up here.

INT. The Black Wayfarer - months later

Crystal’s face is now just as black as the void which surrounds them. Vague signs of ice clutter around her visor. Her skin looks frozen, almost preserved, but still alive, in her suit.

She closes her eyes and all we hear is the gentle hum of the air conditioner, the whizzing of buttons and panels, the ambience of space.

Brief flashback…

A young Crystal is on her back, on a beach towel, nestled in the sand at a beach. The sun shines upon her, glaring in her sunglasses.

The ocean waves crash upon the sandy shore.

End of flashback…

The sound of the waves overtakes the audio.

We cut back to her in the rocket, eyes still closed. We can still hear the waves of the ocean echo through the blackness surrounding the rocket.

The Black Wayfarer’s exterior is shown slowly descending from the dark of space and the gleaming stars that inhabit it, into their ebony fate, into nothingness.

Crystal opens her eyes and glances upwards. A community of stars dazzle above her, inviting her young childhood spirit.

This is where she belongs, amongst those who wade in a everlasting pool of cool black and shine for vast parsecs away, even after going away.

They are hope for her, that maybe….she might see him again.

Suddenly, the stars vanish into complete blackness, swallowed up by the dark.

It is not a canvas for discovery, but a dark and vacant abyss that isolates her.

A look of abject incredulity spills across her face. Her scar burns. She writhes in pain.

The sounds of the ocean become much harsher, more violent.

Quick flashback…

Crystal is drowning, crying desperately for help. The ocean water is dark around her.

Her scar continues to pain her.

She looks around for help. The sea has already swallowed the one person who could save her. Her father.

She suddenly turns into her father descending into the deep ocean. It is quick; we can hardly tell it is him.

Crystal begins hyperventilating, but we can’t hear her.

No audio can be heard except for the increasingly menacing, yet calm, waves. We zoom into her face as she frantically looks to escape her submergence in black, then she closes her eyes once more.

The waves stop as she looks down at her closed fist, which opens to reveal a Rubik’s cube.

She stares at it for some time before snapping back to reality. There is no cube, but she’s calm now.

Pilot #2

Looks like we’ve entered some

sort of anomaly. Doctor Hurst,

does this look like the black

hole from the briefing papers.


Yes, but we’re not in it, just

bordering it. There would be a

complete warping of light and it…

it looks like we’ve still got that

on our side.


Well, I don’t plan on getting

caught in a black hole just yet.

How do we avoid it?


Well, I haven’t read any

tutorials on how to avoid

being swallowed up by a

black hole. I guess we’ll

have to figure that out for

ourselves. And if we get out

of this alive, you can write

a book for future spacefaring

boys and girls. Ok Ben?

We see out the window. A massive black hole looks alive and hungry.


I don’t know how that’ll

work doesn’t

cooperate. We’ll have to,

quite simply, hope for the

best. I’ll try to maneuver

away from it, but it is

doubtful that it will be

without luck.

We see a distant shot of The Black Wayfarer. It’s course is set for the black hole. There will be no maneuvering around it.


We’re headed right into

it! We’ll be crushed! It

isn’t the right time!

We see their hopeless looks of dismay as the plunge towards the black hole, slowly.

To the left, they see a bright light, accompanied by what looks to be a collection of asteroids, headed their way.

None of them see it coming.

They continue towards the black hole.

The man who originally spoke to Crystal, telling her he wanted to go with them, now speaks. He has not been doing much, just sitting anxiously, waiting.

His name is JERRY BARNES, slightly round, friendly smile, though this smile is absent from his face now.

JERRY (shaky voice)

You know, I’ve heard death

really isn’t that bad. We’re...

we’re leaving a grey world

behind, and in death my mother

would say we climb a far green

mountain, with rolling hills,

and a bright light warming

our skin. We’re going to the

other side of the stars...

that’s a nice place to be,

I imagine. When my father was

killed in war, when I was very,

very young, my mother stayed

strong, and told me he was in

a better place. She would show

it to me, just beyond the morning

sky. In death, the answers we seek

are given to us. Right? We are on

the flipside of the stars, a view

of all the universe through our


Ben (Pilot #1) glances at Jerry, with a “WTF” look on his face.


Listen, chubs, you’re not

gonna die. I’m figuring it

out, ok?? D****t!


(pauses) My mother told me

that, in death, we are submerged

in clear waters, so that we may

swim with the whales that will

guide us to the light, to our real

home: a land with green as far as

the eye can see, where we live on

with our loved ones.


Holy s**t, you guys are dense!

Look, I’d rather not end up in

fairy-land, so I’m going to get

us out this mess...somehow.

The rocket is finally moving away from the black hole, still at a very slow pace.

The asteroids are closing in on them. We see a shot of the group, unaware of the impending doom.

The collision is sudden. They are small for asteroids.

We hear nothing, but we see, in a distant shot, the rocket, absolutely demolished as it hurls into the infinite black. It is completely smashed, spiralling rapidly into the nothingness that awaits it.

A few bodies have been ejected from the crash. We cannot see whose.

We close in on the suspended bodies.

We hear Ben’s voice first. They float through the dark. There are four of them.


I take it back! You

might see your damn

whales after all. Now

what, Crystal? You got

a plan for how to swim

home through lightyears

of space??


What the hell, Ben?! Where’s

Jerry, Olivia, and Ian?


In fairy land. But we

have a bit of a situation

ourselves, if you haven’t


We see now in a distant shot that Brent and a woman we haven’t met are alive and with them. They float in the dark, stranded and despairing.




You! Shut up, and don’t

make your presence known,