He waits. For a split-second, there's a pristine silence. Then the sound of the wind rises in the church. With that, the right wrist SHATTERS with a noise like a rifle shot. Freed from one of its supports, the heavy wooden Christ SLAMS FORWARD at an awkward angle. The other wrist SNAPS IN TWO.
For a second, the Christ figure trembles. Then, with a sickening sound, the entire wooden body falls forward, swings sideways and PLUMMETS down. Peter doesn't want to look. The figure is now hanging upside down, held only by the brace at its feet. Above it, each hand remains pinned to the cross. It's an EXACT COPY of Viznick's tattoo.
INT. BIRDSON'S ROOM - DAY Birdson's eyes open.
EXT. CATHOLIC CHURCH Peter staggers outside, dodging two DOGS fighting, a vicious NOISY battle on the Rectory lawn. And in the b.g., a homeless man takes a piss into a rivulet of white liquid. Peter walks in a daze, pulling his car keys from his pocket.
EXT. CITY STREETS - DAY Peter's car moves through traffic, driving slowly, erratically. He scrapes a parked car, but doesn't stop, Corners poorly, almost hitting a pedestrian.
EXT. STREET OUTSIDE SEMINARY - DAY Peter pulls up in his Range Rover across the street from the playground. He gets out of his car and crosses the street. As Peter walks closer, he sees Maya. She's sitting on a swing, looking off into space, rocking ever-so-slightly back and forth, a pile of smoked, crushed cigarettes and her shoulder bag at her feet.
EXT. PLAYGROUND - DAY Standing beside Maya is an agitated DAY-CARE WORKER. Their conversation is FAINTLY AUDIBLE. Across the yard, a SECOND DAY-CARE WORKER is shepherding the last of the kids back inside the center. The children are carefree and rambunctious, unaware of the adult drama taking place around them.
DAY-CARE WORKER: Go on, get them inside! (sympathetically to Maya) Look, you don't have a job here anymore. They want you to leave.
CLOSE ON Maya's face. She's devastated. In the b.g., a YOUNG GIRL does a triple on the roll bar. Three girls and one boy compete for distance on the monkey bars. The Latino Boy and one of his friends LAUGH and break free from the line heading back to the school.
They circle back toward Maya and swoop by her, waving exuberantly, then return to the line and go into the school. The day-care worker follows them as: Peter walks through the gate. He walks fast toward Maya, who sees him coming, from a distance. Maya continues rocking ever so gently on her swing. Peter puts out his hands and stops it. Stares at her, scared.
PETER: (lost) I don't understand what's going on.
MAYA: There's no reason why you should. (tells him as gently as possible) This has been planned from your birth. You fit all the criteria that we know of. Never baptized, born of incest, devoid of faith...
PETER: But I was baptized. And I certainly wasn't born of incest.
MAYA: You were not baptized. At least I don't believe it was Christian. Your baptism was performed by your uncle, James McKenzie.
PETER: Yes, I know.
MAYA: The only baptism he ever performed in seven years as pastor at Bedford.
PETER: So what?
MAYA: Seven years. One baptism? He's your mother's only brother.
PETER: Yes. Maya stares at Peter.
MAYA: Do you know your parents' blood types?
PETER: I looked at the coroner's report. My father's O positive and my mother...A negative.
MAYA: (taking this in a gasp of air) Peter, your blood-type is AB negative. There's no way your birth father can be O positive. You father is not who you think he is.
PETER: (really shaken) So...then the coroner's report is probably wrong. I mean...this is ridiculous. There's been a mistake. I don't believe any of this.
MAYA: Then why are you here?
That silences Peter. He sits heavily in the swing next to her.
MAYA: (CONT'D) Peter, I believe your baptism was perverted. Look at your certificate. Your mother was the only witness to it. Your blood-type doesn't match who you thought your father was. Peter...I'm sorry.
PETER: (desperate) And if what you're saying is true, what would happen to me?
MAYA: I don't know. (beat) I do know that people who are possessed have to accept evil in some way. I don't know if it works the same way in this instance. I don't even know when it's going to happen.
Peter looks at Maya for solace, but there is none. He glances away, runs a hand through his hair and...
PETER: When Townsend tried to kill me, he said something strange like... (struggles to remember) "The time of transformation is near..."
MAYA: (putting something together) Townsend, he had some of Father's books.
EXT. ROUTE 23 - NIGHT As night falls, the Range Rover moves out of the suburbs and deeper into the countryside. There's a bright moon. The highway is a ribbon of silver.
EXT. RURAL ROAD- LATER THAT NIGHT Their car pulls up to a dirt driveway. Bordered by sagging fences, the mail box reads "Townsend." At the end of the driveway is a two-story, weather-beaten farmhouse with a garage. There are no lights on. Maya says a silent prayer and steels herself.
EXT. FRONT OF TOWNSEND'S HOUSE - CONTINUOUS The ground floor windows are shuttered. Maya tries the front door. It's locked. Peter walks to the end of the porch, looking for another entrance. Maya looks at the door, then jams her elbow through a small pane of glass next to the doorknob, breaking it.
PETER: (inward smile at Maya) Okay.
INT. FRONT HALL - NIGHT Peter and Maya enter the dark hall. Peter reaches for a light switch and flips it on. They see a hallway in front of them, stairs to the right and living room off to the left. For a moment, they stand in silence. Peter opens a closet door, glancing inside.
PETER: What are you looking for exactly?
MAYA: The books themselves or maybe some pages he ripped out.
Maya walks into the living room.
INT. LIVING ROOM - CONTINUOUS The furniture is shabby and worn. There's a battered sofa, a new TV and a coffee table. Maya goes to the table and quickly looks through a pile of magazines. Peter enters and makes a fast tour of the room. Maya gestures towards the entrance of an adjacent room.
MAYA: In here.
INT. LIBRARY - NIGHT Maya turns on a standing lamp. This room looks more promising. There's an old piano in one corner. On one wall are two bookshelves. And next to a set of wooden chairs is a small reading table. Maya starts scanning the rows of books. Peter is immediately drawn to the table where he sees new copies of his books. Chilled, Peter turns to Maya.
PETER: He's got all my books.
Maya looks over at Peter.
MAYA: We needed to know all we could.
PETER: I'm going to look around.
INT. HALLWAY - NIGHT Peter crosses the hallway into the dining room.
INT. DINING ROOM The room's dominated by a long wooden dining table, covered with a chintz tablecloth. The window shutters are open and moonlight streams in. Peter tries the light switch. It doesn't work. He walks around the room - and is spooked by a glimpse of movement. It's his own reflection in a mirror. He sees a closet door and opens it. Inside, it's totally dark. He pulls a hanging cord. A light goes on revealing a small pantry filled with canned goods, foodstuff. Peter goes to the other side of the pantry and opens another door.
INT. LIBRARY - NIGHT Maya continues to comb through the bookshelves.
INT. KITCHEN Peter steps into a dingy kitchen. A dirty coffee cup and a plate sit on the counter near the sink. At the other end of the kitchen, past the refrigerator, is a door leading outside. Peter approaches the door, glances through the window. He then turns and walks through a doorway.
INT. BACK HALLWAY - NIGHT Peter stands at the base of the rear staircase. As he starts to ascend the stairs.
PETER: (calling out) I'll be upstairs.
INT. LIBRARY: Maya is flipping through Peter's books. Suddenly, she hears the tread of footsteps overhead. It startles her.
MAYA: (reassuring herself) Peter...
She puts down the book and turns around. Surveying the room, she sees an entrance to the hallway that services the master bedroom.
INT. HALLWAY Maya walks through the hall towards the open door of the master bedroom. She goes in.
INT. MASTER BEDROOM - CONTINUOUS An antique oak bed dominates the room, with two suitcases lying on top. The place is a mess - clothes strewn everywhere. There's a roll-top desk in the corner with some books and papers on it. One of Townsend's jackets is draped on the desk chair. On the opposite wall is a door that's open just a crack. The interior of a bathroom is visible on the other side. The door has a smoky, opaque window built into its top half.
Maya starts sifting through the papers on the desk. She can hear Peter's footsteps moving slowly above her. And the sound of doors opening. She opens the desk drawers. The first one is stuffed with bills. The second has checkbooks, bank statements. The third is stuck shut. Maya kneels down to get better leverage. From this perspective, we can see the open door to the dark hallway behind her...She pulls and pulls again. As the drawer pops open, a shadow falls across her. She WHIRLS. REVERSE It's Peter.
PETER: Not much upstairs. A couple of empty bedrooms and a bathroom. Anything here?
Maya looks at the contents of the drawer. It's full of Christian literature.
MAYA: Nothing yet.
PETER: I'll go outside and take a look in the garage.
Maya nods. Peter exits the room. She hears his footsteps fade away and a door slam. As she stands up, she knocks Townsend's jacket off the chair. A book falls out of a pocket. It's on of the books Townsend took from Lareaux's room. Maya opens it. ECU Tiny, cryptic notations are scrawled in the margins.
EXT. TOWNSEND'S HOUSE Peter walks down the side steps and over to the large garage.
INT. MASTER BEDROOM - NIGHT An intrigued Maya turns another page.
INT. GARAGE - NIGHT Peter enters. Sees a switch. Flips it on and a fluorescent light BUZZES ON. He peruses old boxes, two dusty, black filing cabinets. Ruston curtain rods, a box of broken appliances and an old stove covered with an orange tarp.
INT. MASTER BEDROOM As Maya reads, she hears a light, SCRAPING noise. She glances up. Silence. She waits. Nervous, Maya then goes back to her book. Excited, she spots something that's important. She hears another light SOUND.
INT. HALLWAY Maya listens. She hears a few footsteps in the adjacent bathroom.
MAYA: (to herself) Jesus, Peter, you scared me.
INT. HALLWAY Book in hand, Maya walks over to the bathroom door and flings it open.
MAYA: (rushes in) Look at this...
She steps into the bathroom and freezes.
INT. BATHROOM - NIGHT Henry Birdson is standing in the corner, same green regulation drawstring pants and matching T-shirt. He has a fish-gutting knife in his hand. With an evil smile, he calmly steps forward, imitating the gesture Maya saw in the restroom at the seminary. He raises his knife, holding it out in front of her. Maya stands still.
She wants to run more than anything in life, but she doesn't. Instead, she reaches out one hand and touches the knife ever so gently with the tips of her fingers. Fro a second, neither one moves. Maya's face registers great fear. Birdson slides the knife back. Maya sees blood on her hands coming from a cut on her fingers. She trembles, but doesn't run. Maya uses the humility and calm of an experienced exorcist.
MAYA: (a whisper) Henry, Christ loves you.
Birdson looks at her with the impassive, malignant gaze of a snake.
MAYA: (CONT'D) Christ can save you, Henry.
Birdson shakes his head as Maya's dangling cross picks off particles of pure light.
MAYA: (CONT'D) Just say his name, say his name and you'll be free.
Birdson, agitated, moves closer.
MAYA: (CONT'D) (soothing) Say his name.
He slowly traverses the air in front of her face with his knife. Maya steps back, trapped, her eyes never leaving Birdson's.
MAYA: (CONT'D) (with love) Christ loves you...
For a SPLIT SECOND, the real Henry Birdson appears, then he smiles grotesquely and in a new VOICE:
BIRDSON: (lascivious) Yes, but does he swallow?
VERY FAST: Maya dives out the door. With a SNARL, Birdson recovers and lunges for her.
INT. MASTER BEDROOM - CONTINUOUS Maya throws herself back into the bedroom, SLAMMING the door shut behind her as Birdson's body smashes into it. Maya sees Birdson's shadowy form trying to break the glass with an animal-like fury. Scrambling against his mounting pressure, Maya tries but fails to get the lock to close. The door SHUDDERS, as Birdson pummels it with his body. Birdson CRACKS the glass. A spiderweb of shards rips through the window.
BIRDSON: (different VOICES) Fucking bitch! Open the door!
Maya drops Lareaux's book, shouldering her weight against the door. He hits it so hard, it opens. Maya shoves it back and, straining, manages to lock it. At the same moment, she realizes there's no more pressure on the other side. She stops pushing. POV Over her shoulder, we see the door behind her slightly open.
She turns and realizes this, takes two steps toward that door and then freezes. Maya's in the center of the room, equidistant from all the doors. She looks back at the door to the bathroom. No shadows block the light at its base. Ever so slowly, keeping her eyes on the bathroom door, she reaches over, unlocks and then pulls open the door to the hall. It swings open silently.
She strains, listening as hard as she can. But the only sound she can hear is her own shallow breathing. She says a silent prayer. Then steps gingerly toward the door to the hallway. As she takes a second step: Birdson BURSTS through the bathroom door behind her. He leaps and slashes at her, cutting her arm as she bolts through the door to the hallway.
INT. HALLWAY - NIGHT ...flying into the:
INT. LIBRARY Where - WHAM! - she collides full tilt with a body.
MAYA: AHHHH!!! It's Peter.
They hit the ground, groggy.
MAYA: (CONT'D) Get up!!
PETER: What's the...OH SHIT!
Birdson races in, knife held high. Peter grabs the small reading table and uses it as a shield as they scramble to their feet. Whipping the knife back and forth at lightening speed, Birdson corrals them into a corner. It takes all of Peter's skill to keep him at bay.
MAYA: (dawning realization) Peter, let go of the chair!
PETER: What? Birdson menacingly circles left, then right.
MAYA: LET GO OF THE CHAIR!
As Birdson makes another thrust towards them, Maya suddenly jerks the chair away, clearing a path for Birdson's knife to hit Peter's abdomen. Peter SCREAMS, bracing himself for the impact, an impact that never comes. Birdson freezes, stopping the thrust millimeters from Peter's stomach. He's caught in an unseen trap, paralyzed.
MAYA: (CONT'D) (insistent) He can't hurt you.
In that split second, Peter realizes Maya's right. He takes the chair and SMASHES Birdson in the head. Birdson goes down. Peter kicks him. He doesn't move. Peter grabs Birdson's knife.
PETER: (to Maya) You okay?
MAYA: (O.S.) When's your birthday?
He looks back at Maya, who's holding her upper arm. Blood begins to drip down her side. Peter immediately grabs hold of her hand, carefully pushing her arm up in the air.
PETER: (CONT'D) Hang on, get it up, go on, higher.
MAYA: Your 33rd birthday. The transformation will be a perversion of Christ's rising from the dead. Townsend discovered it in one of Lareaux's books.
Peter goes to the window, grabs one of the lightweight curtains and uses the knife to shred a piece. He takes it and bandages Maya's arm.
MAYA: (CONT'D) It'll happen at the exact time of your birth.
PETER: (he stops) That can't be right. (as he ties off the dressing) My birthday's tomorrow.
With Peter and Maya in the foreground, we see, although they don't, that Birdson sits up, his eyes open, staring at a point above Maya and Peter. A horrible rictus smile moves across his face. Birdson's eyes roll back into his head until only white remains. Then he begins to jerk uncontrollably, his face contorting into one frightening expression after the next.
Peter grabs the fish knife, moving in front of Maya. Birdson's limbs begin to torque out of control. He convulses on the floor then suddenly sits up closer to camera. His eyes roll back down into a normal position. His face becomes calm. He looks at Peter and Maya. A horrified look crosses Birdson's face as his arm rotates backwards, bones snapping and muscles ripping. Involuntarily spewing from Birdson in ever-changing animal like voices.
BIRDSON: (in Latin) My demon of anguish, help me create confusion and suffering forever and ever... and ever...(geni tormentorum, mihi commoventi perturbationem miseriamque in saaecula saeculorum, in saecula saeculorum, in saecula saeculorum...)
ECU Birdson's head turns on his neck in unnatural manner, his body still convulsing. As he stops speaking, his head snaps back around so he's facing Peter and Maya. Suddenly, the chandelier above them flickers, the globes EXPLODING and showering them with shards of glass. Birdson's entire body begins to vibrate, urine seeping out from beneath him.
Then, horrifyingly, a horn like protusion begins to push out from the upper edge of Birdson's head, growing, straining...until finally the horn BURSTS through blowing his head apart. Birdson falls back onto the floor. And as Birdson finally dies, Peter looks at the corpse, then drops heavily onto an arm of a chair. Drained, Maya sits next to him. They lean against one another, together in trauma.
MAYA: He couldn't stop us and that's how he was punished. (insistent) Peter, what time were you born?
PETER: I don't know. (pulls in a breath, overwhelmed) Probably have a copy of my birth certificate...my apartment.
EXT. RURAL ROAD - NIGHT Peter's Range Rover moves at a fast clip down side streets and back roads.
INT. RANGE ROVER Highway's dark, except for Peter's headlights, as they roll up and down a hilly back road. Trees lean in on both sides. The effect is eerily like driving in another world. Maya flips through Lareaux's book. A bible she took from Townsend's house sits on her lap. Looks over at Peter a moment.
MAYA: There's nothing else here.
PETER: What's the bible for?
Peter shrugs. He starts to drive poorly. His fatigue is showing. Maya looks up as: POV Up ahead, the road begins to parallel a lake. Glimpses of black water can be seen through the trees. She powers down her window to get some air. Maya looks over at Peter. His face appears normal. Then, she seems to hear a soft sound - GASPING FOR BREATH. Then: The car suddenly drifts into the other lane, heading straight for a guard rail which outlines the lake. Instinctively, Maya lunges for the steering wheel.
MAYA: (CONT'D) Watch it!
She manages to twist it just enough so the car misses the rail, but careens off the road. The car RIPS through the bushes with an EXPLOSIVE ROAR and SKIDS down the bank and plunges into the lake below. And we: DISSOLVE TO: An enormous SPLASH of water as Peter's car disappears into the lake, the water BUBBLING and as we go under, we see the windshield CRACK and SPLINTER and then we HEAR a ROUGH SCREECH of brakes. A horrendous long skid and...
EXT. BACK ROAD - CONTINUOUS The car has come to a final stop, sitting sideways in the middle of the road, leaving huge skid marks behind it. The windshield's untouched. The road empty.
INT. RANGE ROVER Peter's breathing hard. Maya's trembling, her hands on the wheel.
PETER: What the hell's the matter with you?
EXT. RANGE ROVER Maya pops her seat belt and bolts from the car, leaning against the door, her breathing still LABORED. Peter gets out, moving around to her. He sees she's having difficulty breathing. She chokes out a cough. His anger turns to concern.
PETER: Are you alright?
MAYA: (softly) Sometimes, when I feel weak, I have these...visions.
PETER: What do you mean?
MAYA: I see things. My worst fears. You need to know something, Peter. I was possessed once. Like Birdson. It took Father Lareaux six days to pull me out of it.
Peter grabs hold of her, an impulsive move, ambiguous in its intent and unknown even the Peter, then:
MAYA: (CONT'D) I'm scared I'm slipping back.
PETER: (scared himself) We're going to do this.
MAYA: You have to say that.
PETER: (a smile emerges) That's true.
Maya smiles back.
EXT. COUNTRY MARKET - NIGHT Just past midnight. A small, dirty white stucco and wood country mart. The only light is a stark, household flood. TWO PEOPLE leave the market, carrying a six pack and a few munchies. They hop into their car and take off. And at the edge of the lot, Peter's car is parked.
INT. COUNTRY MARKET Peter and Maya SNAP the lids of their coffees. Somewhere a radio is ON. Maya moves to the AGING CASHIER as Peter walks over to a wall of generic first-aid remedies. HE grabs the largest band-aids there. And as he joins Maya at the counter, we see it's the cashier's radio.
DEEJAY: (filtered) Two minutes.
Cashier looks them over as he turns up the volume.
DEEJAY: (CONT'D) (sarcastic) Now this daylight thing is up to two minutes and scientists say sooner or later, we'll be losing like fifteen minutes a day.
OWNER: (rings them up) Five-twelve.
Peter pays. Out of pennies, the cashier pulls out a new roll and bangs it open inside of the register.
DEEJAY: Now I'll never be on time for work.
EXT. MARKET Peter and Maya sit on the edge of the curb, sipping coffee. Maya pulls out her cigarettes and lights up. She offers him the pack. He gratefully takes one, lights up and inhales.
PETER: Why did you lie to me about your parents' deaths?
MAYA: I was desperate. I knew you wrote about murders. I needed a way in.
Suddenly a car motors toward them. Just as a DEER decides to cross the two-lane road. The car's HIGH BEAMS startle the deer, it stops, snaps a stunned look at Peter and Maya. A moment of stillness, then it gallops to safety just as the car speeds by. Suddenly, quiet again.
PETER: Close call. For the first time in a long time, it's really hitting me. Life's tenuous.
MAYA: I know it is. Right after my parents died, I went to the beach... (short intake of breath) I was in the water. Everything was calm. And then one of those really big waves hit me. Hard. Pulled me straight to the bottom. I struggled and finally ran out of air. (gulps air) If it hadn't been for my sister who pulled me out, I would've drowned. Legally dead for a couple of minutes is what they told me.
PETER: No oxygen to the brain.
MAYA: Maybe that's my problem.
PETER: Why didn't you just go along with Townsend. Get rid of me. I would've...
MAYA: Until it happens, you're still a human being.
PETER: What about after?
MAYA: Only your body will remain. I believe your soul will be at peace. If we kill you, Satan can't stay.
She sees him react to this.
INT. PETER:'S LIVING ROOM The door opens. It's dark, except for the luminescence of Peter's aquarium. We see some of the fish are listing and the aquarium still has a slow leak. The floor's wet.
PETER: Claire, are you home?
He SNAPS on the light. Silent. Stuffy. He opens a window.
MAYA: More air. Always a good thing.
INT. BEDROOM Peter's box of records is on the bed where he left it. The ancient news articles are scattered. Some fallen onto the floor. Peter picks everything up as Maya sifts the contents on the bed. We see passing glimpses of a passport, bankbooks, insurance policies, a will, a set of keys, and then a parchment copy of Peter's birth certificate. Maya picks it up. CLOSE ON Time of Peter's birth is 4:55 PM.
MAYA: Tomorrow afternoon. Four forty-five.
Peter absorbs this.
PETER: (false bravado) Plenty of time.
MAYA: (fingers set of keys in box) What are these?
PETER: I don't know. Extra apartment keys. What's it matter?
MAYA: (desperate) Maybe I should check Lareaux's book. It's in the car. Be right back. Don't go anywhere.
Maya leaves the room. Moments later, Peter hears the front door open and close. Doesn't move, then, suddenly, in a flurry of anger, he knocks the phone off the bedside table. A lamp flies off with it. Then he stands and sweeps his arm across the top of his bureau, knocking off pictures, moments, a jewelry box. Turning, he flips over a chair and kicks it viciously.
Breathing hard, he slumps back on the bed. Across the room he sees a picture of Claire has slipped partially behind the bureau. Its glass has shattered and only half her face is visible. Peter immediately picks it up. Stares down at this smiling girlfriend. He lays it carefully back on the bureau, trying to regain some control. He breathes deep, then begins gathering everything back on to the bed.
He looks at the set of keys. Picks them up. Compares them with his own set. Trying to think, he stares out his bedroom window at the building ledge across the way. He SEES the potted geraniums, now arranged, a simple red flourish. Then a light snaps on in the apartment below and as he looks down, noticing it, his eyes shift, a momentary realization and he looks back down at the keys and leaves his apartment.
INT. ELEVATOR Peter gets on. He looks at the unknown keys again. Then pushes the button for the fourth floor.
INT. APT. 4-A - NIGHT Peter knocks softly on the door. Then more loudly. No response. He tries on of the new keys, slowly giving it a turn. It works. He tries the lower lock. The click of this key is audible as...
INT. APT. 4-A The door swings open to a dark apartment. Peter stands warily at the door, then flips on the lights. Nothing there. No furniture. No occupance. Peter steps in and closes the door. He looks around at the emptiness. A cockroach scurries across the floor in front of him.
INT. LIVING ROOM He walks through the living room and...
INT. BEDROOM Only a small table and lamp have been left in the corner. Peter switches on the lamp. He notices the ceiling's been dropped. A grid of white tile panels, held by a lightweight metal frame. He stares at it. Very slowly he raises the broom upward and pokes on of the panels. It moves easily. He pushes harder and manages to angle the panel, sliding it back, so that some of the original ceiling is visible.
He sees: A lurid splash of color, a tiny fragment of white line, and part of a strange design. Peter stares hard at it. He grabs the small table from the corner and drags it to the center of the room. Standing on it, he can now easily reach the tiles with his hands. He SMASHES the panels loose, KNOCKING THEM OUT and dropping them on the floor. Two, three, four more tiles. Then five.
TIME JUMP CUT TO: The floor below him is littered with ceiling tiles. Peter looks up at: CEILING An enormous PENTACLE. Nine feet wide. It sprawls across the ceiling. Runic symbols crest its edges. For a moment, Peter's mesmerized.
INT. FOURTH FLOOR HALLWAY The door of Apt. 4-A is thrown open. Peter takes off, leaving the door ajar behind him.
INT. PETER:'S APARTMENT - CONTINUOUS The front door is thrown open. Peter steps in to see: Maya, standing, slightly tense, talking to somebody. The other VOICE is obscured by the sound of a garbage truck moving down the street. And as Peter moves farther inside, past the door, he sees: Claire, sitting on the overstuffed chair.
CLAIRE: (gets up) There you are! My God, darling, I've been so worried. Are you alright?
CLAIRE: This is the person...you were talking about?
MAYA: Where were you?
Peter holds out the keys to Claire, ignoring Maya.
PETER: What're these?
CLAIRE: I don't know. What are they?
PETER: I found them in your file box.
CLAIRE: Must be a spare set.
PETER: I thought the spare set was in the kitchen drawer.
PETER: (CONT'D) (to Claire) You were hiding them.
Claire gets up, moving to Peter, and reaches to embrace him. He lets it happen, but doesn't reciprocate.
CLAIRE: Honey, you're exhausted. Do you want to lie down for a little while?
PETER: (moving across the room) I found the pentacle.
Maya's eyes widen with alarm. She turns quickly toward Claire who's watching them. And as Peter follows Maya's stare, in one slow move, Claire pulls a Beretta from a drawer in the aquarium table. She points the gun directly at Maya.
CLAIRE: She's been stalking you, Peter.
PETER: So you're going to kill her? Put the gun down Claire.
Claire ignores him, but before she can make her move, Peter has grabbed her wrist, twisting her back into the living room, trying to pull the gun out of her hand. Claire wrests free of Peter.
CLAIRE: Listen to me, I love you, Peter, I'm trying to protect you!
PETER: You really had me going, Claire. I was finally ready to propose to you.
CLAIRE: We're still going to be together.
CLAIRE: (CONT'D) There's nothing you can do about it. (to Maya) I've fucking had it with you.
She lunges at Maya, one powerful move, but as she does, Maya moves out of the way. And as Maya spins around, Claire goes for her again, but she trips on the wet floor, losing her balance. As Peter grabs to catch her, she crashes horribly through the glass shelves. Peter is horrified.
Then he walks to Claire and pulls the gun from her lifeless hand. Maya and Peter stare at each other in shock for a moment. Then Maya's pager sounds. She checks the number and goes to the phone and dials. As she does, Peter pulls a blanket off the sofa and covers Claire's body.
MAYA: Hi, it's me. What's going on?
She listens, and her expression changes to one of relief. She hangs up the phone and turns to Peter.
MAYA: (CONT'D) Lareaux...he's coming out of it. Let's go.
INT. RANGE ROVER - NIGHT The car passes through the nearly deserted streets. A STREET SWEEPER passes, brushes whirring.
EXT. SEMINARY - DAWN As the sunlight prisms on dew-covered grass, Peter and Maya pull into the seminary parking lot.
INT. FATHER LAREAUX'S ROOM A small crowd of priests, including Father Frank, is in the room. Several stand next to the bed, blocking a clear view of Father Lareaux. Soft CLASSICAL MUSIC plays. The mood is upbeat. As the door opens, Father Frank sees Maya lead Peter in by the arm like a puppet or a lost soul.
FATHER FRANK: (vindictively) I'm glad you're here. There's something you need to see.
With only a cursory glance at Peter, he leads Maya to the bed. The other priests move away. Father Lareaux is sitting up against his pillows. He looks good, rosy cheeked - almost back to normal.
LAREAUX: (happy to see her) Miette...
Maya throws her arms around his neck, smiling for the first time in a long time.
MAYA: Father! Thank God you're better! I really need your help. We've only got a few more hours.
LAREAUX: Don't worry...about the transformation, Maya.
MAYA: What do you mean "don't worry?"
LAREAUX: (being careful not to wound her) Well, in my prayers, I realized we've been fooling ourselves and probably... blown this all out of proportion. God would never allow anything like that to happen.
Maya is floored. Father Frank looks at her scornfully.
FATHER FRANK: I told you this was myth all along.
PETER: (confused) Does that mean it's over?
Lareaux nods a "yes" at Peter, as Maya sits on the old priest's bed. Peter stands beside her.
MAYA: So...we won?
LAREAUX: (sweet smile) Yes. We won, that's right.
Maya plays with her cross, distractedly, rocking it back and forth between her fingers. Lareaux re-fluffs his pillows, looking away from Maya, moving slightly, making himself more comfortable.
MAYA: We won because Christ...triumphed over Satan?
LAREAUX: Um hm. That's right, Maya.
MAYA: So, if Christ won, that means, what does that mean, Father? That Satan...
LAREAUX: (tenderly, swallowing back) Would you like to rest, Miette? You must be exhausted.
Maya picks up a scapular from the dresser and moves in closer to Lareaux.
MAYA: (insistent) So I guess Satan lost. Satan is the weak one.
LAREAUX: (breath coming in shorter bursts) Miette, come here and relax.
Maya is crowding Lareaux now, the scapular thrust almost directly in his face.
MAYA: (repeating, monotone) I can relax, because Satan the coward, trembles before Christ, right?
Father Frank moves over to Maya with another Priest. Sees Lareaux is having trouble breathing.
FATHER FRANK: All right. That's enough for now. He's just recovering. Take it easy, Maya.
But Maya resists their tugging arms, leaning closer to Lareaux.
MAYA: But doesn't he tremble, Father? Doesn't he cower, like a frightened jackal? Satan, the half-wit...
Maya continues, taunting, her cross dangling over Lareaux.
MAYA: (CONT'D) (as slowly as she can) The whimpering slave of Christ! The impotent dog on God's leash!
Maya thrusts the scapular onto Father Lareaux's forehead. He recoils violently, as though burned.
LAREAUX: (vicious, another voice) HE'LL MAKE CHRIST CRAWL!
The entire room stares, transfixed, at Lareaux. Maya look at Peter, then Father Frank, as she moves carefully off the bed.
INT. FATHER LAREAUX'S ROOM - SHORT TIME LATER A nervous Father Frank is supervising the Jesuits as they empty Lareaux's room of its extraneous contents. He avoids looking at Maya. Father Lareaux sits calmly in a chair at the center of the room. None of the Jesuits meet his eye. One Priest tapes the curtains closed over the window. A lamp provides the only light.
INT. CORRIDOR OUTSIDE LAREAUX'S ROOM - DAY Peter and Maya stand anxiously near the door, waiting...
MAYA: He's our best chance. If we can get him back.
Without realizing it, she's touching her shirt cuffs.
PETER: What can I do?
MAYA: (emphatically) You have to be experienced to do this. Just wait outside. Otherwise, you risk killing him.
Maya looks at him, then clasps his hand briefly. She breaks off and walks over to Father Frank.
MAYA: (CONT'D) You'll do it?
FATHER FRANK: I don't have the experience. Father Thomas should officiate.
Father Thomas, a tall Jesuit in his forties, strides down the hall. He's dressed in a long black cassock, with surplice and purple stole. He's resolute. Two other Jesuits, Father Malcolm and Father Jeremy, follow him. DISSOLVE TO:
MAYA: AND FATHER JEREMY STAND CLOSE TOGETHER IN THE HALLWAY. WE HEAR HER WHISPERED MURMUR.
MAYA: Forgive me Father, for I have sinned.
INT. FATHER LAREAUX'S ROOM The priests enter and begin to prep the room. Father Malcolm goes to the closet and takes out the briefcase we saw at Birdson's exorcism. He opens it and takes out a bible, a cross a vial of Holy Water. We see Father Thomas don his cassock and scapular in the partitioned dressing area of Father Lareaux's room. Maya enters. Peter, from the doorway, sees her lock eyes with Lareaux. Finally, she turns away. Lareaux's smile widens. Father Thomas steps out from Behind the partition.
FATHER THOMAS: Tie him to the chair.
Father Thomas makes the Sign of the Cross. Then, he places the tip of his stole on Lareaux's neck, and his right hand on Lareaux's head. Lareaux flinches. Father Thomas places relics of the Saints on Lareaux's chest. He writhes as if in pain. Father Thomas sprinkles Lareaux with Holy Water. Lareaux reacts as though it were burning oil. Finally, Father Thomas kneels, beginning the Litanies of the Saints, in Latin.
INT. CORRIDOR OUTSIDE LAREAUX'S ROOM The last thing Peter sees as the door closes is Maya. Serious, tight, professional and outside the door, Father Frank is already mouthing his rosary:
PETER: (to Father Frank) Now what?
FATHER FRANK: There's nothing we can do but pray. We'll be in the church.
Father Frank leads the other Jesuits down the hall. Within seconds, Peter's alone. He looks at the door. Then he slowly moves closer to it, until he's a foot away. He tries to listen. Nothing. He leans even closer.
FATHER THOMAS: (O.S.) (in Latin) Behold the Cross of the Lord. Depart, enemies! Unclean spirits, and all your companions, I command you. Tell me your name!
Peter moves closer.
FATHER THOMAS: (O.S.) (CONT'D) ...by the love and power of Christ, who has redeemed man from your grasp, I command you.
Peter moves away and sits down on a bench in the hallway.
INT. SMALL CHAPEL - DAY Fourteen Jesuits of mixed race, including Father Frank. Chant prayers in Latin.
INT. CORRIDOR OUTSIDE LAREAUX'S ROOM Peter is sitting on the bench. He HEARS:
VOICES: (O.S.) Peter, Peter...
He looks down the corridor. He sees no one. He looks in the other direction and sees a JANITOR eating a sandwich and pouring a container of MILK into a large glass. Once again, he hears:
VOICES: (O.S.) (CONT'D) Peter, Peter...
He looks at the door to Lareaux's room and sees the WALL BREATH IN AND OUT AS IF IT'S ALIVE. He runs to the door and puts his ear against it.
FATHER THOMAS: (O.S.) ...be gone and leave this child of the Lord God almighty. Be gone, by the power of Christ. Be gone, by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Suddenly the imprint of a chair pushes against the wall as it will burst right through. Peter jumps away. He approaches the door.
FATHER THOMAS: (O.S.) (CONT'D) In the name of Christ, I command you. Tell me your name!
Suddenly a body slams into the wall which starts to ripple as if a subterranean shape were moving through it. The body appears to be climbing straight up the wall. There's an explosion of NOISE, shrieking and shouting, the sounds of furniture being violently overturned. Peter is mesmerized and scared. Hateful VOICES SWELL UP.
VOICES: (O.S.) Too late, too late, too late, too late.
Peter touches the door knob to Lareaux's room. It is FREEZING COLD, so cold it burns. He pulls his hand away and wraps his jacket around his hand.
MAYA: (O.S.) Please, no!
Peter is torn. His hand again moves to the doorknob. Another body SLAMS into the wall. More NOISE cries of PANIC, ANGER...and pain.
FATHER THOMAS: (O.S.) Move, move!
A GROWLING ANIMAL is heard, like a BABOON SHRIEKING. Peter starts to turn the knob, then stops. He's caught, unsure until Maya calls out in agony.
MAYA: (O.S.) Peter, help me. Oh God!
Peter flings the door open and steps inside.
INT. LAREAUX'S ROOM - DAY AND THEN VERY FAST. The door SLAMS behind Peter and Locks itself tight. Then, Peter sees: The room is not destroyed. The room is FREEZING COLD, breath is visible. Lareaux is tied to the chair. Father Thomas is standing over him, with a crucifix in hand, the Eucharist on Lareaux's head. Maya and the younger Priests are kneeling just behind Father Thomas, overwhelmed.
The lamp immediately goes out. Room is pitch black.
FATHER THOMAS: Jeremy, the door!
We hear FUMBLING grunting.
FATHER JEREMY: It...I can't!
FATHER THOMAS: (continue subbing, in Latin) Lowly beast, through the power of Christ. Let the door re-open.
VOICES begin. MOCKING, speeded up versions of sentences we've heard before, LATIN and ENGLISH.
LAREAUX: (in Peter's voice) Go on. Do something. Show me. (in Maya's voice) I'm scared I'm slipping back... A beat. Then a normal voice.
A TORRENT OF PROFANITY drowns him out. A thousand voices, young and old, crying, cursing, filling the air with hatred and spite. Amidst this hurricane of sound, the lights begin to flicker at ultra-high speed, creating a strobe effect. The window bursts open, flooding the room with light. Father Jeremy races over and struggles to close it, but cannot.
Maya is revealed praying, eyes open. Peter and Father Malcolm are crouched near the door. A terrified Father Thomas is bravely standing, holding his crucifix in front of himself, facing Lareaux. Or where Lareaux was. The chair is empty Amid the deafening noise, Peter sees: Lareaux rise up behind Maya and encircle her throat with his hands as the HELLISH VOICES reach a crescendo. Lareaux begins to sing softly:
LAREAUX: Rock-a-bye baby, on a tree top...
Peter leaps to pull Lareaux off her, but the aging priest surprised Peter by grabbing him and hold him at bay. As Peter struggles, Lareaux's expression shifts. His confidence vanishes and pain distorts his features. Lareaux falls to the floor in agony. Maya and Peter bend down to help him, but the noise makes it impossible for them to hear one another. Maya pulls open Lareaux's collar to try to get him more air and in that instant, the VOICES STOP.
The lights POP on. Maya leans close to Lareaux, who's dying on the floor, MUMBLING incoherently. And on Lareaux's forehead, we see incisions resembling strange, unknown letters. Like they've been cut from within. The incisions are repeated on the backs of Lareaux's hands. The room is so cold, steam pops off the breath. Father Thomas moves fast, beginning the last rites in Latin. He makes the sign of the Cross on Lareaux's forehead, then:
FATHER THOMAS: (to Lareaux, in Latin) Confiterisne vitia tua ante omnipotentem deum? (Do you confess your sins before almighty God?)
LAREAUX: ...the ark sank, the sun set, the ark sank again...
MAYA: (desperately) Father, please don't die.
LAREAUX: (in great suffering) ...art sank, sun set, ark sank again...
Maya leans down, inches from the dying priest. Peter moves beside her.
MAYA: Father! For a split second, Lareaux surfaces from his confusion and looks at her with a great kindness.
LAREAUX: Ensemble pour toujours quoi qu'il arrive.
As he dies, Maya is momentarily inert, tears of exhaustion. She's devastated. And we HEAR a single GRACE NOTE laced with an intake of BREATH as we SMASH CUT TO:
INT. CORRIDOR OUTSIDE LAREAUX'S ROOM It's CHAOS as Jesuits rush in and out of the cell, helping the exorcism participants. Father Frank glares at Maya, as he helps clear the room.
PETER: (looking down at Maya) I thought you were in danger.
Maya backs away from Lareaux, who is being covered with a white sheet. A last glance and then she takes off with Peter.
INT. RANGE ROVER Maya looks straight ahead, trying to shake off her fear. Peter looks at Maya, moved by her. Puts an arm around her shoulder, a momentary intimacy, then he pulls away. Finally, Maya looks at Peter.
MAYA: I'll be all right. (reflective) Peter, at the very end, I think Father was back. I saw it in his eyes.
PETER: So, what does it mean. The ark sank and the sun set?
MAYA: He's been repeating that since Birdson's exorcism. I looked in every passage in the Bible and there's nothing about an ark or a sunset that tells us anything.
PETER: What did he say to you in French?
MAYA: That's his, I don't know, his 'grounding' phrase for me, "together, no matter what."
PETER: (deep sigh) Terrific.
EXT. NEWARK NEIGHBORHOOD - DAY The Range Rover enters a blue-collar residential part of the city, old townhouses on both sides of the street. The traffic is heavy and the Rover slows, pulling to the curb.
INT. RANGE ROVER Peter studies Maya, admiring her in some new way.
MAYA: He was trying to tell me something.
PETER: (cynical) And his message was "Together, no matter what?" A car pulls up alongside them. The driver, a middle-aged WOMAN, rolls down her window and calls out to Peter.
WOMAN: Helloooo - do you live around here? (Peter ignores her) How do I get to the turnpike?
The car behind her HONKS impatiently.
IRKED MOTORIST: THERE'S FIVE FUCKING CARS BEHIND YOU, ASSHOLE!
Peter turns to the woman.
PETER: (doesn't give a shit) Lady, I don't know. Offended, the woman drives off. Peter turns back to Maya, who's suddenly grabbed Townsend's Bible and furiously flips through it.
MAYA: Wait a minute. The message. He used French, he knew he couldn't say it directly. The arc "sank" or "cinq" c-i n-q. It's French for five. The sun "set" or pronounced like "sept". The French word for seven. The arc "sank" again. (then) It's five-seven-fie. Book chapter and verse!
She finally stops at a specific section she was looking for.
MAYA: (CONT'D) Book five, Deuteronomy, chapter seven, verse five. (reads) "But this shall you deal with them. You shall break down their altars and burn their graven images with fire."
PETER: And what's that mean?
EXT. GAS STATION - AFTERNOON The Range Rover pulls up. Peter gets out. He's got a five gallon gas can. Maya enters the gas station MINI-MART. A clock reads 4:05. Afternoon NEWS plays on a TV.
NEWSCASTER An international group of scientists will assemble in Geneva later this week in an attempt to determine the cause of diminishing daylight, a phenomenon which has baffled the world's finest scientific minds. In local news, the case of accused killer George Viznick ended in a mistrial today. Prosecutors vowed to press for a new trial immediately. Maya hands the clerk some money and glances outside at Peter filling the gas can.
EXT. SAINT BENEDICTUS - AFTERNOON It looks quiet and serene in the afternoon light. Peter and Maya approach carefully. They see a collection of cars in front of the church. Unkempt and dirty, a few pedestrians stare at them. The gas bumps conspicuously against Maya's thigh.
EXT. SAINT BENEDICTUS - SIDE ENTRANCE Peter pulls out Claire's gun. They step inside.
INT. SAINT BENEDICTUS - CONTINUOUS Peter and Maya pass through the vestry and edge their way into the main cathedral. A MASS is in progress. A lay READER has memorized the text.
READER: God appears and God is light to those pour souls who dwell in night.
Peter and Maya move in suddenly from the vestry, onto the altar, behind the reader. Maya's shocked by the packed-to capacity church. The crowd inside immediately switch their focus to Maya and then to Peter, who's just moved up onto the altar, standing unknowingly directly under the CROSS.
READER: (CONT'D) But does a human form display...
The reader sees the stares from the crowd, stops, and turns to Maya and Peter. The reader is wearing a small inverted cross around her neck.
READER: (CONT'D) Welcome!
In the crowd, Maya sees the little girl from the diner. Maya is stunned. The little girl catches Maya's glance, giving her a sly smile and then looks away. Her mother appears beside her. Unnerved, Maya looks at Peter, desperate.
MAYA: Eight minutes...
Then, the priest at the front of the church, standing quietly next to the reader, turns slowly toward Peter, oddly very calm. And we see it's Father James. He smiles. Charming, gracious.
FATHER JAMES: (looking at gas can) Did you really think you could just burn the church down. That some ritualistic hocus pocus could just end this?
Alarmed, Peter looks at Maya, but her gaze is locked on James. Then Peter glances down at the dripping gasoline can in Maya's hand and as she sets it down.
FATHER JAMES: (CONT'D) Lareaux was never free of us. He led you here. (he starts to sing softly) "Get me to the church on time."
Peter moves toward James, putting the gun to his uncle's head.
PETER: (barely able to stand it) You fucking bastard.
FATHER JAMES: Don't you get it? (re: Maya) They had their 2,000 years. Now it's our turn.
PETER: So all that bullshit about God and faith.
FATHER JAMES: It was perfect. The harder I pushed, the more you pulled away.
PETER: (beyond anger, beyond tears) You lied to me my whole life. Everything you said, everything you did.
FATHER JAMES: Everything I did, I did for you. I love you, Peter. Think of it. I'm giving you a gift, absolute power and knowledge.
PETER: You raised me, like a son.
FATHER JAMES: You are my son. Don't you see the opportunity that lies before you?
PETER: (putting it together) You killed my parents.
FATHER JAMES: I had to. There was no other way. Their deaths were part of the greatest legacy I could have given you.
Peter moves the muzzle of the gun into James' carotid artery. CLOSE ON MAYA: The realization floods her.
MAYA: Don't! That's what they want.
FATHER JAMES: It will be my ultimate sacrifice!
MAYA: If you commit murder, you accept evil.
One by one, people in the congregation begin to rise. Peter can't believe what he sees. Susan and Mrs. Quintana. Stunned, Peter lets the gun lower a moment and then, as he turns back to Maya, he's too late. James has moved behind Maya, holding a long-bladed knife at her throat. James anchors it at her neck, forming a shimmering upside down Cross, Runic symbols carved into the Sterling handle. Peter pivots, pulling up the gun again, aiming it back at James.
PETER: Drop the knife.
He cocks the gun.
FATHER JAMES: She's going to die right in front of you.
Peter looks at Maya. Her expression gives him the permission to do the unthinkable.
MAYA: (softly) Let him kill me.
Peter's thrown off. Maya lets her eyes blink closed. For a moment, no one moves. The knife glints off the stained glass. CLOSE ON Peter. Thinking. Unraveling.
FATHER JAMES: (big smile) You have no idea how much you look like your mother right now.
Peter FIRES, an ECHOING REPORT, bouncing from the Cathedral ceiling to the Travertine floor. Father James falls, mortally wounded.
WILLIAM: And you thought I was the family fuck up. Peter sees William approaching from the pews.
WILLIAM: (CONT'D) Thank you, Maya. You served us well.
Stunned, Peter gulps a mouthful of air, lifts his gun and shoots William in the eye. Immediate. The bullet powers through William, lodging in Mrs. Quintana. She COUGHS up a GURGLING choke, eyes wide. And as she dies gripping her neck, she doubles over the back of a wooden pew. The crowd reacts.
Maya grabs hold of Peter edging him back toward the vestry and out of the church. As the Congregation starts to press forward, Peter swings the gun back up and out toward them. It glistens off the Chalices. They stop, wary and as Maya and Peter finally turn their backs on the crowd, they take off past the sacred Eurcharistic relics.
INT. VESTRY/SAINT BENEDICTUS Through the vestry and out the back door.
EXT. STREET - DUSK Peter and Maya sprint for the Rover.
INT. RANGE ROVER Peter and Maya speed up the street. They turn the corner and continue up a street undergoing construction. Fenced by sawhorse barricades, it's equipped with flashing warning lights.
PETER: How much time do we have?
MAYA: Not a lot.
Peter races past the barricades, side-swiping the steel sawhorses, then suddenly he slams on the brakes, skidding to a rough stop, nowhere to go.
INT. RANGE ROVER Peter looks at Maya, then at the gun in his lap and back at her. Conflicted emotions. He picks up the revolver. Maya stares at Peter. A huge fear rips through her body. Peter hesitates. Then hands her the gun.
PETER: If you can do it...go ahead.
Maya puts the gun down. Leans over and embraces him. They hold onto each other. A shared intimacy, unknown to either of them.
MAYA: (a desperate whisper) I'm not strong enough for this.
Peter reaches over and tenderly brushes the hair away from Maya's face. Then Maya pulls away, raising the tiny gun and TIME slows to a crawl. Maya holds the Beretta. The strain etched on her face, her hands shake, her eyes well up. Peter waits, watching her. She's unsure. We HEAR a choked back breath. Gasping, lungs looking for air. The struggle for life. The car clock seems frozen on 4:54. Finally, it turns over and... Nothing happens. Peter's looking at her. He knows. He's sure of it.
PETER: It didn't work! Maya, I'm okay.
Peter reaches for her, his face radiant, joyful, alive. She doesn't move a muscle. The gun barrel doesn't quiver.
MAYA: Oh, Peter.
PETER: (changed tone) It's me. Put the gun down. Maya...
Tears roll down her face, as she cocks the Beretta.
PETER: (CONT'D) If you really think I'm the Devil, then shoot me.
Out of the corner of her eye, Maya sees the clock - its hands rapidly spin backward.
EXT. RANGE ROVER A HIGH ANGLE of the car from above. A SHOT RIPS through the air. Then one more. Maya exits the car. She's unsteady on her feet. The camera pans up into the night sky. SILENCE. Followed by a low-pitched, disturbing rumble. A kind of GROTESQUE GROAN. Then some HUM is heard. Static. A not quite-tuned in radio station becomes audible.
DEEJAY: (V.O.) I love this, now scientists are saying the days have suddenly stopped getting shorter. It makes you wonder. Do these guys know anything?
The station fades out. There's a FRAGMENT of POP MUSIC, more STATIC, then the RADIO'S SNAPPED OFF. And we hear the sound of breathing, light and steady. DISSOLVE TO:
EXT. RURAL ROAD - DAY An aerial shot of a steel blue car as it cruises down a two lane highway. Passing fields of cotton.
INT. BLUE CAR - DAY Inside the car, Maya is driving. Windows down. She looks serene, at peace, carrying her wound well as we: FADE OUT.
INT. RANGE ROVER Maya aims at Peter's head and pulls the trigger. Peter's thrown back against the seat. She fires again into his heart. Maya lets the gun down slowly. Tears streak her cheeks, as she cups his face in her hands.
DISSOLVE TO: SILENCE Followed by a LOW-PITCHED, DISTURBING RUMBLE, a kind of GROTESQUE GROAN. Then some HUM is heard. STATIC. A not quite-tuned-in radio station becomes audible.
DEEJAY: (V.O.) I love this, now scientists are saying the days have suddenly stopped getting shorter. It makes you wonder. Do these guys know anything?
The station fades out. There's a FRAGMENT of POP MUSIC, more STATIC, then the RADIO'S SNAPPED OFF. And we hear the sound of breathing, light and steady. FADE OUT.