Alligator Skies

Alligator Skies

A Screenplay by Jenny-Jen-Jen
"

This is the book of "Emma" finished and told through a script - rather than letters.

"

Alligator Skies


FADE IN:


 

INT. BEDROOM - LATE EVENING

EMMA - 18 years old, light brown hair. She sits in silence on the edge of her queen sized bed. Her expression is vacant. She wears pajama shorts and an oversized t-shirt. Her hair
has been thrown back into a messy bun. The bed is unmade, clothes are scattered across the floor, and it is dark. One, small, beside lamp lights the room's dark lavendar walls. Directly in front of Emma there is a tripod with a video camera waiting to film. She leans forward and presses the record button. She begins video blogging.

EMMA
(after a brief pause)
Hey- it's me again.

 

Emma shares a glance with the clock on her desk.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
(quietly)
It's still early. 9:07, exactly.
Um- just figured I'd let you know
how the day went.


She takes a deep breath, fidgeting with her hair. One long strand falls in front of her eye.

EMMA (CONT'D)
(shrugging)
It was s****y. But when is that
ever a surprise anymore?


She sits for a moment, taking her attention away from the camera to a spot on the floor. She messes with an old friendship bracelet that is beginning to wear on her wrist.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
(frustrated)
I spent the whole day thinking about
it.


FLASHBACK TO:

INT. HOSPITAL - EVENING


A frantic Emma is pacing in the waiting room. Strangers sit in chairs around the room, paying her little attention. RICK - Bailey's uncle, late 50s, is sitting closest to Emma. His eyes never leave her - a nervous expression on his face.


RICK
(coldly)
Maybe you should sit do-

 

EMMA
(cutting him off)
Don't tell me what to do! We wouldn't
be here if it wasn't for you.

 

A doctor appears, entering from the hall way. He makes his way over to the two.

DOCTOR
Are you Bailey's father?

 

RICK
His uncle. His parents are on the
way.

 

The doctor looks from Rick to Emma.

 

DOCTOR
Would you come with me please?


 

Rick nods, following the doctor.


 

EMMA
(suddenly)
Doctor, is he going to be okay?

 

The doctor catches her eye, pauses for a moment and looks to Rick. He does not answer, and proceeds out of the waiting room with Rick.

BACK TO PRESENT

A tear runs down Emma's cheek. After a pause, her expression returns to frustration.

EMMA (CONT'D)
It's just like you- to leave me to
deal with your mistakes.

 

CUT TO:

INT. KITCHEN - MORNING


Emma's FATHER - early 40s, decent weight. He's wearing a suit, sitting at the kitchen table while reading the newspaper. Her MOTHER - early 40s, wearing a business dress is making a pot of coffee. Emma enters, wearing a pair of old, faded jeans, dirty sneakers, and an old t-shirt. Her video camera in hand. Her light brown hair is down, covering her face.

Emma's mother turns to her holding a pot of coffee and frowns.

MOTHER
Emma, is that any way to dress for
work?

Emma ignores her mother's comments while searching the cupboard for her own coffee cup. She sets her camera on the counter.

MOTHER (CONT'D)
(pressing)
Emma, really --

 

EMMA
(interrupting)
I work with animals all day, mom.
It's not really a formal occasion.

 

Emma pours herself a pot of coffee and retreats to the kitchen table. She sits by her father, stealing half of the newspaper.

Her mother shrugs, changing her attention to a bagel - she begins coating it with cream cheese.


FATHER
(suddenly)
Stocks are going up, dear. Looks
like that vacation may be coming
sooner than you think.


MOTHER
(unamused)
We'll have to find a sitter.


Emma looks up from the newspaper, confused. Her father turns a page of the newspaper.


FATHER
A house sitter?

 

MOTHER
No dear, for Emma. She's far too
young to stay home alone.


EMMA
(confused)
I'm eighteen, mom.


Emma looks to the calendar on the wall, noting that Saturday, the 15th of April is empty.

EMMA (CONT'D)
(under her breath)
You'd know that if you remembered my
birthday every now and then.

 

Emma's mother pauses to take a look at her daughter. A puzzled look forms across her brow.

MOTHER
You're not fifteen? My how time
flies.
(pauses)
And you still haven't had a boyfriend,
dear?


 

Emma ignores her mother's comment, standing from the table. She walks over to a coat-hook, retrieving her rain-jacket. She takes her camera from the counter.

EMMA
(quietly)
I'm going to work.


 

By now, her mother has directed her attention back to the bagel on the counter. Without any commentary from her father, Emma heads towards the door.

CUT TO:

EXT. SIDEWALK - FEW MINUTES LATER


The sky is a dark grey, and a light rain is steadily falling. Puddles have accumulated on the sidewalk and road. We see a bus heading away, leaving Emma behind. Emma heaves a heavy sigh and pulls her camera out of her coat pocket, turning it on and holding it outwards, facing her.

EMMA
(frustrated)
Thanks Bailey - ever since you've
been gone, I've had to take the bus --


 

She pans the camera towards the bus leaving in the distance. She returns it to her.


 

EMMA (CONT'D)
You know how many times I've missed
it?
(pauses)
How about just this week?


She sighs once more, beginning to walk down the sidewalk towards town.

She tries her best to avoid the puddles as she pulls up her hood.

EMMA (CONT'D)
(sadly)
I had a dream about you last night.
(a brief pause)
It'd be real nice if you stop that -
that invading my dreams nonsense.

 

Emma straightens up, looking around to make sure no one is watching her, talking to a camera.


EMMA (CONT'D)
I just wish I could forget it, you
know? I was there - I saw you do
it.
(angrily)
I saw you f*****g killing yourself -
so why do I need to see it in a dream?

 

A car drives by, honking their horn and purposely going right through a puddle. The action causes water to splash up and drench Emma and her camera. The car continues to speed down the road, without a second thought.

EMMA (CONT'D)
(angrily)
F**k you!
(looking at the camera)
And f**k you, too.

 

Emma turns the camera off, shoving it back into her pocket. She puts her head down and continues walking down the sidewalk.

CUT TO:

INT. ANIMAL SHELTER - LATE MORNING


Emma enters, wet from the rain. Her jeans are wet and her rain jacket prooved to be no help, as her t-shirt below is soaked. The animal shelter is filled with the sound of dogs
BARKING and a static-filled radio coming from the office in the back. Cages line the walls, filled with dogs and cats.

There is a mother and child playing with a puppy, but no other visitors. The floor is slick from rain and mud that has been tracked in.

There is a small counter near the front of the shelter where TYLER - 20 years old, blonde, tan - sits. His feet are propped up on the counter and he doesn't look up from his gaming magazine in hand. He rocks on the back legs of the chair he sits in, his expression reads only of boredom.


Emma removes her jacket, tossing it behind Tyler, and proceeds to the back and into the office.


CUT TO:

INT. OFFICE- FEW MOMENTS LATER


 

DREW MILLER - 40s with a grey, receding hairline. He sits at his desk, finishing off a large cup of coffee. Papers are scattered all over his desk, falling to the floor. An old desktop computer is buzzing on the desk after years of use. Books are stacked in the corners and an old vintage couch is pressed up to a bookshelf to the left. Name tags are scattered across a cluttered shelf. Drew looks up to see Emma and smiles. His teeth are crooked and he is dressed in jeans and an old white t-shirt. He adjusts his glasses, watching as Emma gets her name tag off the shelf, pinning it to her t-shirt.

DREW
How's my favorite helper doing this
morning?

 

EMMA
Don't act like you care, Drew. Fake
isn't attractive in older men.

 

Emma takes a pack of gum out of her back pocket, opening a piece and tossing it in her mouth. Drew's smile fades a little, but doesn't lead to anger.

EMMA (CONT'D)
I thought you said you were getting
rid of lazy pants out there?

 

Emma tosses her gum wrapper on the floor, and looks to Drew.

 

DREW
(irritated)
Had to wait for the help to get here.

 

Emma only smirks before walking back out of the office. Drew follows.


CUT TO:

INT. ANIMAL SHELTER - MOMENTS LATER

The woman and her child are seen leaving the shelter. Tyler has not moved from his laid-back position behind the counter. Emma walks behind Tyler, grabs a large bag of dog food and heads to the cages, filling the bowls.

Drew walks over to Tyler and snatches the magazine from his hands.

 

TYLER
Hey! What the hell, man?!


 

Tyler leans forward, the front legs of the chair slamming on the ground. His expression has changed to anger, as he looks to his boss.

DREW
(mockingly)
Break time's over, dude.

 

Drew tosses the magazine into a trash can beside the desk.

DREW (CONT'D)
Your last check's on the way.

 

Tyler looks at his boss, stunned and angry. He grabs his magazine from the trash and rips his name tag off his shirt. Emma walks back over to the counter, placing the dog food back behind the counter. She rolls her eyes at Tyler's actions.

 

TYLER
Whatever, man. You can't fire m--

 

DREW
Oh, what? You quit?

 

TYLER
Oh, screw you.

 

Tyler stands, picking up his coat off the ground beside him, and walks around the counter.

 

TYLER (CONT'D)
You can go to hell, man.

 

Tyler brushes past Emma, and walks out of the shelter - cell phone already in hand, pressed to his ear. Emma laughs a little after the door closes behind him.

EMMA
So, how 'bout that help?

 

DREW
(annoyed)
Get to work.

 

Drew proceeds back into his office, leaving Emma to continue her work.

Emma sighs, grabs a dog-brush, and heads back over to the cages.

CUT TO:

EXT. BEDROOM - EVENING


Emma is sitting on her bed, her camera is placed on the tripod in front of her, and she is in the middle of a video blog. She's wearing pajama shorts and a t-shirt once more, her
usual sleep-attire.


EMMA
(upset)
I just don't understand why you're
gone - and why I'm still here.

 

She's holding a photo of a boy, BAILEY - deceased 18 year old, best friend of Emma's.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
(staring at the photo)
Watching you die was the hardest
thing I've ever done.

 


FLASHBACK TO:

INT. BAILEY'S BEDROOM - LATE AFTERNOON


We see Bailey lying on the floor, bleeding from the cuts on his wrists. He's heaving and crying. He's sick, holding his stomach tightly. A knife, covered in the crimson blood lays a few feet from him. Directly beside it is a empty pill bottle. Emma is holding his hand - SCREAMING and crying, frantically trying to stop the blood with a towel.

BAILEY
Just stop it, Emma! Go away!
He tries to shove Emma away, but she holds on tighter.

 

EMMA
(yelling)
No. I'm not letting you die!

 

Bailey tries to shove again, growing weak. He coughs - spitting out blood onto the carpet.

We hear SIRENS and the lights from an ambulance and police cars shine through the window.

Bailey looks to Emma, no longer fighting. His body begins to loosen up - he grows quiet. He lays his head on the floor, his eyes drifting shut.


EMMA (CONT'D)
(frantic)
No, no Bailey. They're here.


Bailey's body grows still - little response. The paramedics rush in, followed by Rick - his expression cold. Commotion and chaos continue.

 

BACK TO PRESENT

EMMA (CONT'D)
(pauses)
I thought we told each other
everything - you know? So why did
you wait until that night to tell
me?

 

Emma runs her fingers through her hair, wiping a few tears from her eyes.


EMMA (CONT'D)
(quietly)
I mean, I always knew you had problems
with your Uncle --
(pauses)
Just never knew... that it was that...
serious - you know?

 

Emma stands, without turning the camera off. She walks over to her cluttered desk and picks up a newspaper article that has been cut out. It's about Bailey's death - a teenage
suicide.

 

Emma's tears flow faster, her face turning a shade of pink. She reaches in her drawer and finds a blade, previously used. She stares at it, growing angry.

EMMA (CONT'D)
(quietly, to herself)
Doesn't take much, Emma... come on.

 

She sinks to the floor, pressing the blade to her wrist. A pause - enough for her to take a deep breath and grit her teeth. Emma shuts her eyes, gripping the blade tighter pressing down. She gasps - a swift cut - and blood.

CUT TO:

INT. ANIMAL SHELTER - AFTERNOON


Emma is helping a MAN with adopting a dog when GAVIN - 23 years old, bulky and muscular with black hair - enters. The man Emma is helping is older - late 50s, graying hair. He's excited about adopting a puppy for his grandson.

MAN
(continuing)
-- And he's five. Perfect age for
his first pup, don'tcha think?

 

Emma's attention is weary as she see's Gavin - a stranger to her, walking directly into the office.


EMMA
(distracted)
Sure, sir. Perfect.

 

MAN
(smiling)
Well, I'll take him!

 

The man pets the puppy that is chewing on his shoelace - too excited to notice that Emma isn't paying him any attention. Emma watches as Drew and Gavin walk out of the office, shaking hands. Her expression changes to a scowl. Gavin catches her glance and smiles, before following Drew over to the counter.

MAN (CONT'D)
(trying to get Emma's
attention)
Well miss, where do I check out?

 

Emma looks to the man, confused.

EMMA
What?

 

MAN
(quietly)
The puppy? How can I adopt her?

 

 

EMMA
Oh! Right - right this way. My
manager will have to get you the
papers.

 

Emma leads the man over to the counter where Drew is talking to Gavin. Drew notices the man, and directs his attention to Emma.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
(to drew)
He wants to adopt.

 

DREW
Alright, while I get the paper work,
you mind showing Gavin around?
Of course you don't! Thanks, kid.


Drew motions for the man to follow him to the office, and the two disappear moments later. Emma looks back to Gavin, who has a mile-wide smile across his face.

 

EMMA
(annoyed)
New guy?

 

GAVIN
I'm new to you, sure.

 

His smile is unfading as he finds amusement in Emma's attitude.

 

EMMA
Well, here you're expected to do
work -- no lazy business.
(she points to the
supply area behind
the desk)
You're expected to brush, feed, and
bathe all of the animals dai-

 

GAVIN
(cutting her off)
So basically, I take care of them
and try to be a good sales man?

 

Emma turns pink with anger, though Gavin's smile only grows.

 

EMMA
(angry)
Look here, I don't take s**t - do
your work and stay out of my way.
Then we'll be fine.

 

GAVIN
(chuckling)
Aye-aye captain.

 

Gavin playfully solutes Emma, standing in formation. Emma rolls her eyes, walking away from Gavin.

 


GAVIN (CONT'D)
(calling after her)
So, is that it?

 

Emma flips him the bird, walking over to the cages, continuing to work. Gavin laughs to himself, waiting for Drew to return.

CUT TO:


EXT. SIDEWALK - LATER


The storm has passed, though it is now dark out. Emma is walking home from the shelter, video blogging once more. She's upset - or angry - she isn't sure, herself.

 

EMMA
(frustrated)
It's just like a man - to walk in
like he owns the place.

 

She sighs, avoiding a puddle.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
He's got another thing coming if he
thinks it's an easy job - hell, I'll
make it hell for him.


In the distance, we see Gavin walking behind Emma - a calm, confused expression on his face. He doesn't speak, only listens as he walks home - the same direction as Emma.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
(grunting)
Bailey! Do you know how hard it is
to rant to a camera?
(pausing)
Normal people don't have to talk to
themselves to vent.

 

Emma jumps a puddle, not reaching far enough - her foot lands on the edge, splashing a little bit of water up her leg. She groans.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
And what about that car you promised
to have for us? Looks like that
dream is shot to hell. Huh?

 

She continues rambling, turning down her street, off Gavin's course. He pauses at the end of her street, watching her continue on down the road. He scratches his head, a puzzled look remains on his face. He watches a moment more, then continues towards his home.


CUT TO:

INT. KITCHEN - EVENING


Emma enters, slamming the door behind her. Her mother jumps, a pea falling from her fork to the floor. Her mother groans, picking the pea up with her napkin. Emma tosses her coat on the hook before plopping down at the table.

The bracelet which was previously covering her slit wrist has moved, revealing the cut. Emma doesn't notice, and picks up a fork and begins eating the food her mother has provided. Her mother sighs, dropping her fork and staring at her. Emma doesn't budge - neither does her father.


The group continues eating for a moment before Emma's father mumbles through a chew.


FATHER
(suddenly)
Oh, dear - booked our hotel for this
weekend. Exciting, huh?

 

Emma looks up from her food, glancing between her parents. She then looks back to her food, noticing her wrist is exposed. She tries to secretively cover the cut.

 

MOTHER
(a small amount of
excitement)
Wonderful, but I'll have to cancel a
meeting with a client.

 

Emma glances to the calendar on the wall. Her birthday is still empty - they've still forgotten. Either that or they are too wrapped up in their own plans to care.

Emma scoops up a fork-full of potatoes and sends them into her mouth.

 

FATHER
(to Emma)
You gonna be alright for a weekend,
alone?

 

Emma glances to her father and nods.

 

MOTHER
Of course she is, she's seventeen
now, remember?

 


FATHER
(correcting)
She's eighteen, dear.

 

MOTHER
(glaring)
I was close enough, right Emma?

 

Emma looks down, refusing to comment, though she's surprised that her father remembered.


She hurriedly finishes her dinner before heading out, coat in hand.

CUT TO:

 

EXT. PARK - MIDNIGHT


Emma walks into the deserted park - only lit by two streetlights. The ground is still damp from the recent rain, but she wipes off the seat of an old swing and sits. The swing beside her has a chain that SQUEAKS. The monkey bars, the slide, the sea-saw - all remain vacant. It's quiet which is calming.

 

Emma closes her eyes, leaning against one chain of the swing. The memories from her past are haunting in this place. This is the 'old hang-out' - where she and Bailey would share secrets - all but one secret, apparently.

 

FLASHBACK TO:

EXT. PARK - NIGHT


 

Bailey and Emma are side by side on the swings. Both appear happy. Bailey is dragging his foot in the dirt, attempting to make pictures while Emma swings slightly, back and forth.

 

BAILEY
So, Amy Pierce kissed me today.

 

Emma drags her feet suddenly to stop.

 

EMMA
(angry)
She did what?

 

BAILEY
(annoyed)
I thought you'd be happy for me.

 

Emma tries to hide her disappointment.

 

EMMA
I mean - it is better than you kissing
Tommy Jensen in the 2nd grade.

BAILEY
Hey! You pinky swore that would go
to the grave with you!

 

EMMA
Relax, no one's around. It'd be
different if I yelled that at school.


Bailey stands, spitting in his hand.

 

BAILEY
New pact - not only does it go to
the grave, but verbal rights of that
day are from here on, banned.

 

Emma just laughs, staring at Bailey. His expression doesn't change.

 

EMMA
(sighing)
Fine. You two year old.

 

She spits in her hand, shaking it with Bailey's.

BACK TO PRESENT

Emma sighs, opening her eyes to find Gavin standing before her. He is in jeans and a hoodie, his black hair messy. The sudden sight makes Emma jolt in surprise and fall from
the swing. She lands in damp mud, beneath the swing. Gavin hurries to help her up.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
(angrily)
What the f**k? Don't you know not
to sneak up on people?

 

Gavin lends her a hand, but is pushed away once Emma is back on her own feet.

 

GAVIN
(trying to hide his
amusement)
Sorry, didn't mean to scare you.

 

EMMA
(brushing herself off)
Whatever, freak.
(pausing)
What the hell are you doing here
anyway?

 

Gavin sits in the swing next to hers, motioning for her to join him. Instead, she crosses her arms across her chest, angrily.

 

GAVIN
I like this spot- I come here to
think.

 

Emma shuffles on her feet.

 

EMMA
(protectingly)
But - this is my spot...
(pausing)
I mean, it was - but, still is.

 

Gavin motions for her to sit again. She does this time.

 

GAVIN
It can be shared.

 

EMMA
(chuckling)
Like I'd share it with you.

 

GAVIN
It's not private property.

 

Emma doesn't fight this remark

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
(looking to her)
What's your deal, anyway?

 

EMMA
(harshly)
My deal?

 

GAVIN
(sighing)
I know your name is Emma - but what
else? What's up with the video camera
thing? And why so on edge?

 

Emma turns her swing to face him, suddenly.

 

EMMA
(angrily)
That's none of your business!
(pausing)
How do you even know about-

 

GAVIN
(cutting her off)
I've seen you with it.
(pausing)
And just making conversation- chill
a bit.

 

Emma lets her swing go, facing forward again.

 

EMMA
(quietly)
It's personal - leave it at that.


Gavin nods, looking up to a clearing nights sky.

 

GAVIN
(carefully)
Does it have anything to do with
your wrists?

 

He winces as her face goes pink, then red. She glares at him.

 

EMMA
(angrily)
You've got a lot of nerve - you don't
even know me.

 

GAVIN
(pausing)
No, I don't - but it doesn't mean I
don't get it.

 

Emma stands, angry.

 

EMMA
You're wrong! You don't understand -
no one does.
(storms away a few
feet)
What the hell gives you the right to
ask me that?

 

She stands, waiting for an answer. Her anger is growing by the second. Gavin stands, walking over to her - she steps away, preparing to leave.

 

GAVIN
(rolls up the sleeve
of his hoodie)
Because I do understand.

 

Emma pauses, trying to peak at his arms - confused. He takes a step closer, but she takes one back.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
(holding his arm out)
Would you just slow your roll, girl?
(frustrated)
Jesus, just look.

 

Emma glares at him before taking a step closer and looking. His wrist matches hers - a solid scar - a line right across his wrist. She looks from his arm to his eyes - still not satisfied with how direct he was. But his usual smirk isn't there.

GAVIN (CONT'D)
(calmly)
You're not the only one with a story.

 

CUT TO:


INT. ANIMAL SHELTER - AFTERNOON

It's a sunny day, and the shelter has many guests when Emma arrives - in cargo shorts and a t-shirt. Gavin is helping a young couple with a kitten - he doesn't notice Emma come in.

 

Drew comes out of the office and sees Emma, he waves, carrying paperwork over to a man and his daughter.

Emma heads behind the counter, grabbing a couple brushes and a bag of dog food after dropping off her keys and coat. She walks past Gavin, straight to a cage and begins to fill bowls.

After a few moments, Gavin appears at her side.

 

GAVIN
(suddenly)
Got a question for you, skipper.

 

Emma looks up to find his sheepish smile and sighs.

 

EMMA
What do you want?

 

GAVIN
(faking disappointment)
Well fine, if you don't care to answer
it.

 

He pretends to walk away - successfully getting her to turn her attention towards him.

 

EMMA
(giving in)
What is it, Gavin?

 

Gavin smiles, turning back to Emma.

 

GAVIN
Hear me out-
(pausing, smiling)
Come out with me tonight.

 

EMMA
(laughing)
What? No.


 

 

GAVIN
(pressing)
Oh, come on. What have you got to
lose?

 

EMMA
(immediately)
My dignity?

 

Gavin shoots her a look, smirking.

 

GAVIN
(mocking)
You still have that?

 

Emma glares, filling up another food bowl.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
Kidding! Come on, when was the last
time you had fun?

 

Emma's first memory is of Bailey. She shakes it off, glaring back at Gavin.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
(smiling)
So, yes? Seven?

 

EMMA
(laughing again)
In your dreams.

 

GAVIN
(mocking)
It's not a date, sweetie. Haven't
had any of those nightmares yet.

 

Emma glares, realizing how hard it is to win against Gavin.

 

EMMA
What did you have in mind?

 

Gavin smiles, sharing a small victory with himself. Emma rolls her eyes and walks away.

 

GAVIN
(chasing after her)
Leave it up to me? I'll pick you up
at seven?

 

Emma stops, looks at Gavin, and sighs. Drew walks by, with paperwork, a puppy, and the father and daughter he was working with.

DREW
(without stopping)
Work now, date later you two.

 


Emma glares at her boss while Gavin smiles.

 

EMMA
(quietly, to Gavin)
It's not a date.

 

GAVIN
(smiling)
Aye-aye, captain.

 

CUT TO:


EXT. EMMA'S FRONT YARD - AFTERNOON


Emma returns from work, to find her parents loading up their SUV. A few bags of luggage and her mothers work bag. Her father walks around the car and spots Emma.

 

FATHER
Hey Em, you mind grabbing that last
bag for your mother?

 

He motions to one on the steps.

 

EMMA
(retrieving the bag)
Where's mom?

 

FATHER
Oh, you know your mother. She's
making a few calls before we leave.

 


Emma walks over to the car and puts the last of their luggage in the trunk. She closes the latch, turning to her father. He's got a card in his hand, outstretched towards her.

 

EMMA
What's that?

 

FATHER
(handing it to her)
Don't tell me you forgot your own
birthday?

 

Emma looks at the card and then to her father.

 

EMMA
(confused)
Thanks.


FATHER
Just figured you could use some
spending money for the weekend - I'm
sorry we wont be around.

 

Emma looks at the card again as her mother exits the house, hanging up with a client.

 

MOTHER
Okay, I'm ready!

 

FATHER
(to Emma)
Just call if you need anything.

 

EMMA
Good luck with your trip.
(looking at her mother)
You're going to need it.

 

Her father smirks, going around the car and getting in. Her mother hops in, and the two set off on their trip. Emma watches them pull out of the drive way before opening the card from her father. It's blank on the inside, but has a check for three hundred dollars inside. She looks up as her parents drive away.

 

CUT TO:

INT. EMMA'S HOUSE - AT NIGHT

 

Emma is sitting on her couch - in jeans, and a t-shirt. Her light brown hair is down and in her face - her usual look. She's holding her camera in one hand while examining a recent
cut on the other. She considers video blogging to Bailey, and turns the camera on. She turns it towards her.

 


EMMA
(quietly)
Bailey, I'm confused.
(pauses)
You know Gavin? Well, he's-

 

She looks down, frustrated.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
Well, he's coming over - or we're
going out - but not, like going out,
going out - just, out - you know?

 

She looks down, closing her eyes and turning off her camera. Frustration has covered her face. The doorbell rings.

She looks to the clock on the wall - 6:58 PM.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
(surprised)
He wasn't kidding.

 

She stands and heads for the door. Once she gets there, she pauses for a moment - longer than a moment. He rings the door bell again, and this time she opens the door.

 

GAVIN
(smiling)
Surprised?

 

Emma just stares. He's dressed in dark jeans, and a tight, burgundy button up shirt. His hair is a mess - but it suits him.

 

EMMA
(nodding)
Yeah, you look -
(looks down at herself)
Better than I do.

 

GAVIN
(chuckling)
I meant - surprised I came - but
that works too, I guess.

 

Emma stands there, staring.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
(chuckling again)
So, I'm not sure if you'd rather go
out and see a movie - or crash here -
so I'm letting you pick.


He holds up an array of movies in one hand, and his wallet in the other. His smile hasn't faded. She looks back, into her vacant house. She pauses for a
moment.

 


GAVIN (CONT'D)
(concerned)
You okay, skipper?
Emma looks back to him, and shrugs.

 

EMMA
(lying)
Not feeling so well. Maybe we should23.

 

GAVIN
(cutting her off)
Stay in?
(retreats into her
house)
I agree! I'll doctor you up. You
name the food - I'll order it in for
you.

 

He looks around the house, smiling.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
And your choice in movie, skipper.

 

Emma watches as he walks around, making himself at home. Shocked, she just closes the door and follows.


CUT TO:

INT. EMMA'S HOUSE - LATER


Gavin has ordered an array of chinese food - Emma's request and "Casablanca" is playing in the background. Emma is curled up on the couch, facing Gavin. Neither have paid much attention to the movie, and what would usually be an awkward silence is truthfully peaceful. The majority of the food has been eaten, but Emma hasn't loosened up.

 

GAVIN
(suddenly)
Not so bad, am I?

 

EMMA
(looking up, distracted)
What?

 

GAVIN
(concerned)
What's wrong, skipper?

 

Emma pulls her knees up to her chest, looking at him.

 

EMMA
(lying)
I'm fine.

 

GAVIN
(giving her a look)
Liar - you don't hide it well.

 

EMMA
Really, I'm fine.


GAVIN
(pausing)
Does it have to do with the camera
thing?

 

Emma follows his glance to her camera on the coffee table. She sighs.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
You know, you don't have to hide -
I'm a good listener

 

Emma looks away, growing uncomfortable.

 

EMMA
It's not your problem.

 

Gavin sighs, sitting up and moving closer to Emma. She looks at him, wondering what he's doing.

 

GAVIN
(showing her his arm,
again)
It was.

 

EMMA
(looking into his
eyes)
I "vlog."

 

Gavin looks confused, waiting for more.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
I - I talk... to my camera-
(pausing)
But, it's more like my best friend.
(correcting herself)
No, It's like letters- to Bailey.

 

GAVIN
An ex?

 

EMMA
(shaking her head)
No, a best friend.

 

GAVIN
What happened?

 

EMMA
He - he died.

 

GAVIN
(pausing)
It was suicide, wasn't it?


Emma grows quiet, turning away.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
(pausing)
You know it wasn't your fault, right?

 

Emma just looks to him. He looks to her wrists, thinking to himself.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
I guess you didn't - I didn't. Not
until recently.

 

Emma sits up, uncomfortable.

 

EMMA
(closing her eyes)
I watched him die.
(opening them)
I couldn't help and-
(stopping)
The paramedics weren't fast enough.

 

FLASHBACK TO:

INT. HOSPITAL - LATE NIGHT


Emma is curled up in a chair in the waiting room. The number of visitors has died down to a mere few. Bailey's mother walks in, her face red and stained by the tears. She sits
down next to Emma, who looks to her - scared.

Bailey's mother just closes her eyes, letting more tears fall, and shakes her head. Emma's tears quickly follow as the two fall into a long embrace.

BACK TO PRESENT

Both Gavin and Emma have grown quiet. Emma stands, the bracelet on her wrist moving, showing a second line - fresh.

Gavin notices, glaring.

 

GAVIN
You've got to stop that.

 

EMMA
(confused)
Stop what?

 

GAVIN
(a little frustrated)
Cutting. It's stupid.


EMMA
(protectively)
It helps -

 

GAVIN
(angrily)
Helps what? Nothing - I cut once.
It was stupid - causes a little pain
to me, and a lot to everyone else -
it's selfish...

 

Gavin's rant is spurring off his recent past - drug abuse and suicidal actions. These are left unsaid, however his memories create anger.

 

EMMA
(angrily)
It helps me.

 

GAVIN
You know, I knew you were depressed -
not stupid.

 

Emma grows angry, not understanding his sudden change in heart.

 

EMMA
I'm not stupid!

 

GAVIN
(standing)
You're a stupid little girl who cuts
herself for attention - I know - I
was there once.

 

EMMA
(angry)
Just because you cut, doesn't mean
you understand.

 

Emma walks towards the door.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
I'm not letting you treat me like
this - in my house!

 

GAVIN
Oh, now you show self respect!

 

He walks after her, grabbing his coat.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
(shaking his head)
I don't know what I was thinking,
coming here.

 

EMMA
Then leave, jack a*s!

 

She opens the door for him - he steps out.

 

GAVIN
(pausing)
Look, for your sake - I hope you
stop.

Emma's rage grows.

 

EMMA
Oh, whatever, dick! Go to hell.

 

She slams the door, leaning back against it, wondering what exactly caused such a fight.

 

CUT TO:

INT. BEDROOM - DAY


 

Emma has called out from work today - still angry from the night before. The daylight is the only thing lighting her room. She is spread out on her bed, tossing a ball up towards
the ceiling, catching it, and repeating.


Her cell phone begins to ring - again. Emma lets out a long sigh before sitting up, retrieving it from her nightstand. We see that there is an incoming call from Gavin - she hits ignore.

 

EMMA
(annoyed)
Really? Seven times?

 

She lays back down, holding her phone above her, staring at the list of missed calls. She drops the ball to the floor. It rolls across the carpet, stopping by her closet.

She sits up, grabbing her camera from her nightstand - turning it on and waiting.
After a moment, she begins.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
(confused)
Maybe he's right -
(pausing)
Maybe it is selfish...

 

She holds the camera in her lap, thinking. She stands, returning to her desk - looking at the article of Bailey's death.

She holds the camera up, still thinking.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
Bailey-
(pausing)
I don't know how you did it... I've
always envied you. But - what if I
did it?

 

She looks down at the paper and turns her camera off. She sets it down on the desk, and looks to her door.

 

The faint murmur of a conversation comes from the distance.

 

CUT TO:

INT. EMMA'S HOUSE - MOMENTS LATER


Emma enters the living room, to find her parents home - early. They look surprised to see Emma home. The luggage from their trip is in he doorway.

 

EMMA
Mom? Dad?

 

They look concerned.

 

MOTHER
Shouldn't you be at work, dear?

 

EMMA
(ignoring that comment)
Can I talk to you guys?

 

FATHER
(concerned)
Sure, pumpkin.

 

Emma pauses - stunned to hear her fathers pet name for her - she hasn't heard it in years.

 

FATHER (CONT'D)
(pressing)
What is it, Emma?

 

Emma takes a deep breath, walks deeper into the living room, sitting down. She begins to fidget with her hair.

 

EMMA
(slowly)
It's kind of serious.

 

MOTHER
I've always wanted you to be serious,
dear.


Emma looks to her father, hopeful.

 

FATHER
(to his wife)
Let's just listen, dear.

 

Emma's mother nods, looking to her daughter and seeing how scared she is.

 

FATHER (CONT'D)
Go ahead, pumpkin.

 

EMMA
You guys remember when Bailey died?

 

Emma's mother nods, staring off a bit.

 

MOTHER
That poor boy. I never imagined
Rick as the type to abuse his own.

 

Emma winces, trying to block the memories.

 

EMMA
(after a pause)
Well, ever since then -
(struggling)
I've had a hard time.

 

Emma's father sits down beside her, putting his arm around her.

 

FATHER
You know we're always here for you,
right?

 

He looks down and see's Emma's wrists. The scars are uncovered.

 

FATHER (CONT'D)
Emma, baby, you don't need to do
that.

 


Emma's mother sees the cuts as well, covering her mouth - shocked.

 

EMMA
I know that now.
(pausing)
I just needed -

 

MOTHER
(interrupting)
You needed us.

 

Emma looks to her mother who has begun to cry slightly.

 

EMMA
Yeah.

 

Emma's mother walks over, sitting on the other side of her, holding her daughters hand.

 

MOTHER
You'll have us now, baby.

 

Emma looks from her mother to her father and looks down. The three embrace in a hug - a rebuilding of their family.

CUT TO:


INT. BEDROOM - MIDNIGHT

Emma has her camera out. It sits on the tripod in front of her bed. She has her hair brushed back, out of her face. Her bedside lamp is once again the only light in the room. She reaches up and turns on her camera. She stares, a small smile growing on her face.

 

EMMA
Hey Bailey.
(pausing - smiling)
You surprised to see me smiling?
Yeah, me too.

 

She looks down, her smile growing wider.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
I think I reached an epiphany today.
I realized that even though you're
gone, and the pain will always be
there-
(pausing)
I've got a couple great reasons to
live.

 


Emma looks to her lap where the article of Bailey's death lies.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
I got up the guts to face my parents
today.
(pausing)
You would have been so proud of me.
And I think I've finally got it
figured out, it's great.

 


Emma looks back up to the camera and smiles.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
And even though I'll always miss you -
I'll miss you like crazy. I know
I'll see you again.
(pausing)
I'm not in a rush anymore.

 

Emma stands, walking over to her window - looking up at the moon.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
All I can hope is that you found
your happiness. You deserved it more
than anyone I've ever known.

 

She walks back over to her bed, looking at the camera and smiling again.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
I love you, Bailey. But I think
it's time for me to shine. Maybe
I'll talk to you again soon.

 

She reaches up and turns the camera off, smiling to herself before climbing into bed.

 

CUT TO:

INT. ANIMAL SHELTER - MORNING

Emma returns to work, ready to face Gavin and the 13 missed calls from the previous days. The shelter is empty of guests, and Gavin is feeding the animals. When she enters, he nearly drops the bag of food - rushing to talk to her.

 

GAVIN
(suddenly)
Emma, I'm so sorry- I was a dick - I -

 

EMMA
(Cutting him off)
I know - we need to talk - but after
work, ok?

 

Gavin nods as Drew exits his office.

 

DREW
Oh Emma, nice of you to join us.

 

Emma smirks, nodding to Gavin - as if for him not to worry.

EMMA
(to Drew)
I know, work now - date later.


She heads behind the counter, getting a brush and heading over to the cages.

 

CUT TO:

 


EXT. PARK - EARLY AFTERNOON

Gavin follows Emma to the park after work. He's nervous, but Emma seems happy - for once. The park is empty and the sun is out. There's a couple clouds in the sky, but they're white - no rain in sight. The wild flowers are blooming. It's a beautiful day.

 

EMMA
(to gavin)
I'm done.

 

GAVIN
(confused)
With?

 

EMMA
(smiling)
Cutting - I talked to my parents.
And you were right. It was selfish.

 

GAVIN
(smiling, slowly)
That's good - but -

 

EMMA
(cutting him off)
I know you're sorry. But- you
shouldn't be. It was what I needed
to hear, even if it did come off a
little harsh.

 

Emma walks over to Gavin, smiling.

 

GAVIN
You're forgiving me, after that?

 

EMMA
Yeah. I'd like to know what really
made you so angry though.

 

GAVIN
Just a memory. I told you, you
weren't the only one with a story.

 

Gavin sits down on a swing, looking down.

 

EMMA
Can I hear this story?


She sits down on the swing beside his.

 

GAVIN
Sure.

 

He pauses, looking up at Emma. The sunlight is shinning on her hair. He smiles, softly.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
I didn't watch a friend die - I've
never had to deal with death, so
personally.

 


Emma looks down at the ground as Gavin begins dragging his feet in shapes and patterns - the way Bailey used to. She looks up, waiting for him to continue.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
My dad left when I was little.
(pausing)
I didn't really know him - so it was
just me and my mom. We moved a lot.
I got into he wrong crowd.

 

He runs his hand through his silky black hair.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
I got involved in some drugs - the
wrong scene. It wasn't me, but I
did it anyway.
(pausing)
It messed me up. I saw how much I
was hurting my mom - my little sister.
Maybe that's my reasoning for the
cutting.

 

EMMA
(after a moment)
What made you stop?

 

Gavin looks up to the sky.

 

GAVIN
My baby sister.
(pausing)
She started following in my footsteps.
I couldn't let that happen.

 

Emma reaches out and takes his hand. He looks to her and smiles.

 

GAVIN (CONT'D)
I'm glad you've decided to stop.


EMMA
(pausing)
You helped me. I guess I kind of
saw the light.
(chuckling)
I'm thankful. And Bailey would be
too.

 

Gavin smiles, reaching out and hugging Emma. The two settle in a long embrace.

 

GAVIN
May I ask a question?

 

EMMA
(smiling)
Sure.

 

GAVIN
What are you doing tonight?

 

CUT TO:

 


INT. EMMA'S HOUSE - EVENING

Emma is dressed in a skirt and a blouse that her mother has helped her put together. Her hair is curled, make-up done - she looks beautiful.

She sits in the living room with her mom, waiting for Gavin to arrive. A smile is ever-present on her face.

 

MOTHER
(giggling)
This is so exciting!

 

EMMA
Mom, please - it's just a date.

 

Her father enters, a scowl on his face.

 

FATHER
What kind of boy is this?

 

EMMA
(sarcastically)
He's a rebel dad, total bad a*s.

 


Unamused, he walks to the kitchen.

 

EMMA (CONT'D)
(yelling)
I'm just kidding!


The door bell rings and Emma jumps up, excited to go out for the first time in a long time. She heads to the doorway, looking back to her mother and father who are peeking around the corner. She motions for them to go away - they do.

Emma opens the door to find a very handsome Gavin - faded jeans and a nice button up shirt, standing before her.

 

GAVIN
(handing her flowers)
Hello, beautiful.

 

EMMA
(smiling - looking at
the flowers)
These are gorgeous.

 

GAVIN
As are you.

 

Emma smiles, looking up to Gavin. She takes a moment to place the flowers inside, grabbing her coat and keys.


EMMA
(yelling to her parents)
I'll be back later!

 


She closes the door behind her and takes Gavin's extended arm.

 

GAVIN
(smiling)
Ready for a new beginning?

 

EMMA
Oh yeah.

 

Gavin leans over, kissing Emma on the cheek. She lights up, looking to Gavin.

 

GAVIN
Then lets get started.

 

They take off, arms linked, and smiling.

FADE OUT.

© 2011 Jenny-Jen-Jen


Advertise Here
Want to advertise here? Get started for as little as $5

Author's Note

Jenny-Jen-Jen
Alligator Skies has been a journey. The story started in a letter - to no one. That letter turned into a person - Emma. And from there came more letters - the makings of a book in my mind. It was a story my heart was telling me to tell. A few members of Writers Cafe read the beginning letters - they're posted on my page. I hope they find this end product - this script, something enjoyable. I've put my heart into it - from my mind, to paper, to posting it here for almost two years now.

I love Emma's story and I love her, as if she was a real girl. I hope your connection with this story could be just as dear.

Of course; I'll continue working on this story. This script is far from finished. With that being said, your comments, thoughts, and critque is very much desired. Please let me know what you think - anything, everything, please.

I hope to post more soon, if not of this story - a new one. I hope you enjoy.

Thanks for reading!

My Review

Would you like to review this Screenplay?
Login | Register




Reviews

I loved this. It's making me want to write screenplays/scripts even more. But sadly, I'm more confused on the format for script writing than it is for me to understand how to write novels in free-verse poetry like Ellen Hopkins.

Boy, would I give anything to write something like this!

Posted 10 Years Ago


Jenny-Jen-Jen

10 Years Ago

I was taking a screenwriting class when I wrote this piece. I was using a screenwriting program that.. read more
Erika Jones

10 Years Ago

I actually tried it out on part of a chapter I'm writing for my book last night. :) Want me to send .. read more
Jenny-Jen-Jen

10 Years Ago

Sure, and i'll get to reading it as soon as possible! with work, I'm not on much. But I'll get right.. read more
You have done a very good job with this screenplay. I like the characters in the story and how you described their life and activities. Death change our view on life. Somethings we won't understand. You have great skill. The story never got weaker. You are create a powerful and interesting screenplay. Thank you.
Coyote

Posted 11 Years Ago


0 of 6 people found this review constructive.

Currently just over 7000 words. This is very short for a screenplay. Not sure what length you were going for, time-wise. Television pilots, as an example, are typically around 20000 words.

'Emma shares a glance with the clock on her desk.'
-- not sure if 'shares' works here. 'Emma glances at the clock.' would work better.

' (quietly)'
-- screenplays rarely have these kinds of notes attached. Delivery of lines is left up to the actors and the directors.

The character introductions are well done.

Emma is a little bit hard to feel sympathy for in the beginning. She is angry, yes, but showing a little more grief at first would increase the viewer connection.

Tyler seems a little stereotypical. He is a throwaway character at the moment. The scene in the animal shelter doesn't seem to have anything to do with the plot. Emma continues to make herself unlikable.

The death scene is poignant and painful. My only point of contention is that when it comes to teen suicide, guys VERY RARELY slit their wrists. Guys most often commit suicide by hanging. Girls are most likely to slit.

The playful interaction and developing relationship works well, but the transition from dislike to like is a little abrupt.

'You're a stupid little girl who cuts herself for attention - I know - I was there once.'
-- dangerous line here. This is the party line for cutting. The psychological issues are much more complex. Cutters tend to cut as a way to focus their pain on an external visible source, they do it to relieve pain, not get attention.

Also, you destroy the viewer respect and liking for Gavin here.

The scene with her parents is handled well.

I still have trouble with Emma. I like strong female characters, but she just comes across as arrogant and irritating. There seems to be little change in her character from the beginning to the end. Even after the reveal with Gavin, where he admits to cutting, she doesn't change her attitude toward her parents. Her parents are not that bad, they ignore her, sure, but there are worse things.

She has this nice scene where she makes good with the parents, then in the next to last scene she is back to her old self.

A happy ending. Always a good thing.
Overall impressions, well done. I'd like to see Emma change over the course of the story more, or at least show more moments when she isn't so angry. Your audience will react better if you make her more sympathetic.


Posted 11 Years Ago


4 of 5 people found this review constructive.

this needs a lengthy comment.suicide is a big programme,i went through it once
ans saw how stupid i was its never a solution ,its like being a coward ,i know the journey
is never that rosy ..still its walking through it ,and trying hard ,till you shine ,if not for others
you shine to yourself on the inside,and achieve more and more till you are satisfied
i liked this ,as you say it needs more work on it ,dramatize lots more ,give us a shock here and there
make it more emotional in every corner..i liked how he said it was selfish,and he had to give up
so as not to hurt his mother or baby sister for she followed through,more emotions and tricks
needed ..more shocking turns..as suicide is a tricky situation ..the mood changes
a thousand times in a moment..and what succeed in the end is being wise about it..loved this work
lovely write..

Posted 11 Years Ago


1 of 3 people found this review constructive.


Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


Stats

481 Views
4 Reviews
Rating
Shelved in 1 Library
Added on April 30, 2011
Last Updated on April 30, 2011

Author

Jenny-Jen-Jen
Jenny-Jen-Jen

Mo-Town, NC



About
Death is Peaceful. Life is Harder. I base my writing upon what comes to mind, what I'm going through, and true feelings. I'm opinionated, and sometimes you'll see that shine through the cracks of m.. more..

Writing
Free Free

A Poem by Jenny-Jen-Jen



Related Writing

People who liked this story also liked..