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Chasing Sleep (2000)

by Michael Walker.

More info about this movie on IMDb.com


FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY


INT. BEDROOM - NIGHT

Ed lies awake in bed. He is sweaty and nervous. His eyes are wide-open, blood-shot and tired.

He picks up his bedside clock which is ticking loudly. It is 3:37.

He looks over at the other side of the queen-size bed. It is still made. He picks a long, blonde hair from the pillow and examines it curiously.

There is a noise outside and Ed gets up to investigate.

INT. HALLWAY - NIGHT

Ed walks through the dark hallway and into the living room of his small house.

INT. LIVING ROOM

By the front door, hanging on the wall, is a framed picture of Eve, Ed's wife. Ed passes by it and looks outside through the window. There is some wind outside, but nothing else.

INT. BATHROOM

Ed looks longingly at his reflection. Ed Saxon, 45, is a morbid, insecure man. His frustration with his life has tinged his sense of humor with an acerbic bite. His early success, a few publications of his poetry, has given him a professorship at the University. He is well-read, intelligent, a bit pompous and occasionally condescending. But mostly, these qualities are restrained and his outward appearance is a little sorrowful. There is an unquestionable charm about him, and its effect is evident in the people around him.

He searches through the medicine cabinet, which is full of women's items, and takes out a Cosco-sized bottle of sleeping pills. He reads the back and takes two.

He hears something bang against the front door.

INT. LIVING ROOM

He opens the front door and takes a step outside.

EXT. PORCH - NIGHT

He looks down by his feet and finds the morning paper, wrapped in blue plastic, lying on the doormat. He picks it up and goes back inside.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Ed stands helplessly in the empty living room.

Ed's desk sits on one side of the living room, crammed into the corner. He searches quickly through the stuff on the desk and finds a small address book. He finds a name in the book and dials the number.

SUSIE

(over phone)

Hello?

ED

Susie. Hi, it's Ed. I'm sorry I woke you up.

SUSIE

Is something wrong?

ED

Eve isn't there, is she?

SUSIE

No. She's not there?

ED

No. She didn't come home after work.

SUSIE

Oh, no. Didn't she call or anything?

ED

No. She was supposed to be home around six. I cooked her dinner.

SUSIE

Could she have gone anywhere else?

ED

I don't think so. Do you?

SUSIE

I don't know.

ED

I'm a little worried.

SUSIE

I bet. Did you call Harborview?

ED

No. Do you think I should?

SUSIE

Yeah. If she got into an accident of something, they would take her there.

ED

You don't think that's overreacting?

SUSIE

Don't be silly. Just call them. It can't hurt.

ED

Alright. But if she comes home later and it turns out to be nothing, don't tell her I called the hospital, OK?

SUSIE

Call me back.

ED

Alright.

Ed finds the Yellow Pages and finds a page of "non-emergency" numbers. His finger runs down the list: Trauma, Fire, Disaster, etc. until he comes to Hospitals and then Harborview. He dials the number.

OPERATOR

Harborview.

ED

Hello. I wanted to find out if someone had come in. In an emergency, maybe.

OPERATOR

Hold on.

She transfers him and the phone rings again.

NURSE

Emergency room.

ED

I wanted to find out if someone had been brought in.

NURSE

What's the last name?

ED

Saxon. Eve Saxon.

NURSE

Are you a relative?

ED

She's my wife.

NURSE

One second. No. No one with last name Saxon.

ED

Are there any other hospitals that I could check?

NURSE

Well, we serve as the emergency room for King County, so unless they specified a hospital, they would have been brought here. In an emergency.

ED

OK. Thank you.

He calls Susie back.

SUSIE

What happened?

ED

Nothing.

SUSIE

Jeez. Did you guys have a fight?

ED

No. No.

SUSIE

Did you call the school?

ED

Yeah, a while ago. No one answered the phone there.

SUSIE

It's not like her to not call, is it?

ED

No, she would have called.

SUSIE

Why don't you call the police?

ED

The police?

SUSIE

Maybe they know something? Like if she was in an accident.

ED

It's going a little far, don't you think?

SUSIE

I don't know. If you're worried...It's not like the police have anything better to do.

ED

I guess. OK. I'll call you tomorrow. Sorry to wake you up.

SUSIE

It's OK. Call me tomorrow.

He hangs up.

INT. KITCHEN - NIGHT

Ed looks around the kitchen, searching lazily for something to eat. He opens a cabinet that is full of boxes of fat-free Skin-EE( chocolate-marshmallow cookies.

He opens the fridge, looks around and takes the plate of food he made for his wife. He takes off the cellophane and starts to eat.

He sits at the table, but after a few more bites, he loses his appetite.

INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Ed sits at his desk, staring at the phone. He takes a breath and calls 911.

OPERATOR

911 emergency.

ED

Hi. I don't think this is an emergency.

OPERATOR

What's the problem?

ED

My wife hasn't come home and, I don't know..I wanted to check with the police to see if there was an accident.

OPERATOR

When was the last time you saw her?

ED

This morning. She was supposed to come home from work, but she didn't.

OPERATOR

When does she get off work?

ED

Around six. Usually.

OPERATOR

She hasn't called since then?

ED

No.

OPERATOR

Do you have any idea where she might have gone? Maybe to a friend's house?

ED

I don't think so. I called the only place I could think of.

OPERATOR

But you were expecting her home.

ED

Yes. I cooked dinner.

OPERATOR

I could send a police officer to your house.

ED

Do you think that's necessary? Maybe I should wait.

OPERATOR

Until when? It's five in the morning.

ED

Maybe she went somewhere.

OPERATOR

Where?

ED

I don't know. Should I be worried?

OPERATOR

I would be.

ED

Yes, I'm worried.

OPERATOR

So, do you want me to send an officer to your house?

ED

I don't think so. I think I should wait.

OPERATOR

Do you think she's going to come home soon?

ED

I hope so.

OPERATOR

So do I. How long are you going to wait?

ED

A little longer. I think I may be overreacting. She might have gone somewhere I can't think of. Sometimes I worry too much.

OPERATOR

OK. It's up to you. My name is Paul. I'll be here if you change your mind.

Ed hangs up.

INT. BATHROOM

Ed takes the sleeping pills from the medicine cabinet and takes two more.

INT. HALLWAY

Eve has a small room in the house that Ed is cautious about entering. He walks in and looks around, as if he hasn't been in there for a while.

INT. EVE'S ROOM

The room is painted sky-blue and the ceiling has clouds painted on it.

On one side of the room, there is a console piano with some sheet music resting on it.

On the other side of the room is a small, antique writing desk. Ed sits down and looks at some of the items lying on it. There are a couple of letters and an address book. There is a box containing paper clips, etc. There is an open box of Skin-EE( cookies.

There is a drawer in the desk which he tries to open, but finds that it is locked. He searches around the desk for a key, but can'' find one. He presses a little harder at the drawer, but it won't budge. He takes a letter opener from a jar on the desk and starts to fidget with it, but he still can't open it.

Then he hears some distant voices coming from outside. He looks out the window where he can see the house next door. There is a light on in the neighbor's window, where the voices are coming from, and some vague shadows move around inside. Ed turns off the lights in Eve's room, so that he can see more clearly.

From the muffled sounds, it is soon clear that the couple next door is having an argument.

Only the woman's voice is clear.

WOMAN

I hate you! Stay away from me! Don't touch me! Just go to sleep! I'll scream! I am not screaming now! You don't know anything about me!

Then the noise dies down and the woman can be heard sobbing in the distance.

INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Ed picks up the phone and dials 911.

OPERATOR

911 emergency.

ED

Hi. I called before. I think I was talking to Paul.

OPERATOR

Hold on.

Paul comes on the line.

OPERATOR

This is Paul.

ED

Hi. I called before. My wife hasn't come home.

OPERATOR

Yes. I remember. You want me to send an officer over?

ED

Yes.

OPERATOR

What's your address?

ED

4523 East Street.

OPERATOR

He should be there in a few minutes. OK?

ED

Yes. Thank you.

OPERATOR

You did the right thing, sir.

Ed hangs up. Almost instantly, he sees some lights pass by the window. He looks through the window and sees a police car pull up. He opens the door and watches the officer as he approaches the house.

OFFICER STEWART is a youngish patrolman. He is relaxed, caring and formal.

STEWART

You called the police?

ED

Yes. It was me. That was fast.

STEWART

Thank you.

ED

Come in.

Stewart is led a few steps into the living room. He looks around.

STEWART

Your wife didn't come home? Is that right?

ED

Yes.

STEWART

When was the last time you saw her?

ED

When she left for work this morning. She was supposed to come home after work. I cooked dinner.

STEWART

And she made it to work, right?

ED

Yes. I think so. I don't know.

STEWART

What time does she usually come home? Around six?

ED

Yes. Usually.

STEWART

What does she look like?

ED

She's blonde, straight hair.

STEWART

What was she wearing? Do you remember?

ED

I think it was a red sweater and a dress.

STEWART

What kind of car does she drive?

ED

A Volvo. Gray. '85, I think.

Stewart lets out a sigh of relief.

STEWART

Well, you had me worried. There was a blonde woman involved with a car-jacking around six. Apparently she was hit on the head by one of the perpetrators and then wandered away from the incident in a daze. Nobody's seen her since. When I got the call on the radio, I thought that must have been your wife, but this woman was driving a Pathfinder and was wearing jeans, so it probably wasn't her. You had me worried.

ED

She drove a Volvo. Drives a Volvo.

STEWART

That's a relief. Do you know anywhere your wife might have gone?

ED

I called the only place I could think of. And I called the hospital.

STEWART

Harborview?

ED

Yes.

Stewart takes a couple of pills from a bottle and takes them, chasing them down with a coffee he has with him.

STEWART

I'm afraid there's not much I can do now. By law, we can't put out a missing persons until 72 hours has elapsed since the last time she was seen.

ED

72 hours?

STEWART

Usually in these cases, it was something stupid. Maybe she was upset about something, had to get away. Who knows? What I can do is take the license plate number of her car and if it shows up for some reason, we'll give you a call. Do you have your wife's license plate number?

ED

Yes. Actually, it's easy to remember. 007 FEC.

STEWART

James Bond.

ED

Right. And FEC, For Every Child.

STEWART

And what's her name?

ED

Eve. Eve Saxon.

STEWART

And your name?

ED

Ed. Saxon.

STEWART

Like I said, it was probably something stupid. Did you have a fight?

ED

Not at all.

STEWART

Well, you should try to get some sleep and, if she doesn't show up tomorrow, give us a call and we'll see what things look like then. OK?

ED

Yes. Thank you.

STEWART

Usually, they come back.

ED

Yes. Thank you. I feel much better now. Thank you for coming.

STEWART

No problem. You have a good night. Or morning, I guess.

ED

Yes. You too.

Ed shuts the door. He's a little wired so he sits at his desk and picks up a pile of his students' papers. He reads the one on top, marking it with a red pen as he does.

He hears a gurgling noise coming quietly from the bathroom. He gets up and walks into the-

INT. BATHROOM

He looks around the bathroom, tracing the sound to the bathtub drain. It gets louder as he approaches it, but before he can investigate, there is a knock on the front door.

INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY

When Ed comes out to answer the door, it is now bright daylight outside.

The sun is streaming in through the windows. Through the washed-out sunlight outside his window, Ed can see a police car parked in front of his house.

Someone knocks again and Ed answers the door. As he does, he picks up the mail that has been dropped through the slot in the door.

DETECTIVE DERM, 46, stands outside in plain clothes. Derm is, above all, a nice man. Experience has given him a knowing stare, but he is affable, not suspicious. He is consistently professional and genuinely concerned.

ED

Hello.

DERM

Mr Saxon?

ED

Yes.

DERM

Sorry to wake you up.

ED

I wasn't asleep.

DERM

Oh. I called a few times and when there wasn't any answer I thought I better come over.

ED

What time is it?

DERM

About 3:30.

ED

3:30? Maybe I did fall asleep. Damn.

DERM

I'm Detective Derm of the Seattle Police Department. You called last night about your wife.

ED

Yes.

DERM

We found her car this morning. On Capitol Hill. Actually, somebody called it in. It was running.

ED

Running?

DERM

Did your wife come home last night?

ED

No.

DERM

Did she go to work today?

ED

I don't know. I haven't called.

DERM

Do you have a number for her there?

ED

Sure.

Ed picks up the phone and dials from memory.

DERM

Why don't you let me?

He hands Derm the phone.

DERM

Hi, this is Detective Derm of the Seattle Police. I was wondering if Mrs Eve Saxon had come into work today, or called in, any word from her. Yes. Since yesterday. Did you see her leave yesterday? Yes. About what time was that? I'm not sure. Is she calls, or comes in, could you please ask her to call me. My number is 734-9722, extension 38. Thank you. Bye.

He hangs up.

DERM

She hasn't been in today.

ED

My God.

DERM

She hasn't called here at all?

ED

No.

DERM

Any messages?

He points to the answering machine. It is blinking, full of messages.

ED

I must have been asleep.

DERM

That happens.

ED

I was up late last night.

DERM

I understand. Why don't we listen to these messages?

ED

Alright.

Ed pushes the button on the machine.

The first message is from Eve's work.

CELESTE

(on machine)

Hi, this is Celeste, calling for Eve. We're worried about you. You don't come in. You don't call. No, seriously, we just want to make sure you're OK. Don't worry about your students. Marie's covering for you. But give us a call, OK? Bye.

ED

That's the school where Eve works. She's a piano teacher at Franklin High.

Then there's a message for Ed.

MRS MASTRIONI

(on machine)

Hello, Mr Saxon. This is Mrs Mastrioni from the University. You didn't show up for your morning class and I'm calling to see if you'll be in for your other classes so that I can make the proper arrangements. I assume you remember how to use the phone.

ED

Damn.

DERM

You're a teacher too?

ED

A professor at the University.

The next message is Derm.

DERM

(on machine)

Hello, this is Detective Derm from the Seattle Police Department...

Derm takes a small pill box from his overcoat, while the machine plays in the background.

DERM

That's me. Do you have a glass of water?

ED

Sure.

Ed goes into the -

INT. KITCHEN

- and fills a glass for the detective.

INT. LIVING ROOM

When he comes back, he sees Derm casually looking over the woman's magazines on the coffee table. Derm picks up a filled-in New York Times Sunday Crossword and looks it over.

DERM

Your wife did this?

ED

Yes.

DERM

Smart woman. The acrostic, too.

Ed hands Derm the water.

DERM

Thank you.

Meanwhile the next message comes on. It is a girl from Ed's class.

SADIE

(on machine)

Hello, Mr Saxon? This is Sadie, from your creative writing class. Anyway, you didn't show up today and I just wanted to see if you were OK and, you know, if there was any reading or anything you wanted us to do. My number is 323-4854. I hope you're alright. Bye.

DERM

A student?

ED

Yes.

DERM

Do they call you often?

ED

No, but they all have my number.

The next message is from Susie.

SUSIE

(on machine)

He, Ed. I just wanted to find out what happened last night. If Eve ever showed up, or what happened. Call me at work, 672-5695.

ED

I thought she might have gone over there last night. Excuse me, I better call the University.

The next message is Detective Derm again and it plays behind Ed's conversation.

ED

Hi, Mrs Mastrioni?

MRS MASTRIONI

(over phone)

Yes.

ED

This is Ed Saxon.

MRS MASTRIONI

Oh, yes. Didn't make it in today, huh?

ED

I guess not.

MRS MASTRIONI

There were students waiting for you.

ED

Yes, I know. It's a personal matter.

MRS MASTRIONI

A personal matter, huh?

ED

That's right.

MRS MASTRIONI

So you'll be in tomorrow.

ED

Yes, tomorrow.

MRS MASTRIONI

Or you'll call.

ED

Or I'll call, yes. Hello? Hello?

Ed hangs up, having been hung up on. He turns around to see Derm standing right by, listening to his call.

The next message is from George Simian, a man who works with Eve. His cautious voice makes it known that it is weird that he is calling. Ed pays special attention to this call.

GEORGE

Hi, Eve. This is George, from school. You didn't come into work today and I just wanted to make sure everything was OK. I guess I'll see you tomorrow.

DERM

Who's that?

ED

Some guy she worked with. P.E. teacher, I think.

DERM

I see. Mr Saxon, does your wife have an address book?

ED

Yes.

DERM

Could I see it, please? And a picture, if you have one.

ED

Certainly.

Ed heads into -

INT. EVE'S ROOM

- and picks up the small address book from the desk.

INT. LIVING ROOM

He hands the address book and takes a picture of Eve from his desk, removing from the frame.

DERM

Great.

Derm flips through the address book and a business card falls out. Derm picks it up and looks it over.

DERM

George Simian. Is that the same George that called?

ED

Yes.

DERM

This address, this George Simian lives on Capitol Hill, where we found your wife's car.

ED

Really?

DERM

May I borrow this?

ED

I suppose.

DERM

I'll call the numbers in here and see what I can turn up. Try no to worry, Mr Saxon. I'll be in touch.

ED

Yes, thank you.

Derm leaves. Ed shuts the door and locks it.

The phone rings and Ed picks it up.

ED

Hello.

SADIE

(over phone)

He, Mr Saxon?

ED

Yes?

SADIE

Hi, it's Sadie Crumb, from your creative writing class.

ED

Oh, yes. Hi.

SADIE

Are you OK? Is this a bad time to call?

ED

No. It's alright.

SADIE

I was, I don't know, wondering if you were sick or something, when you didn't come to class.

ED

No, well, a little.

SADIE

Do you need anything? I mean, I could bring you something.

ED

No, I don't think so.

SADIE

Really, it's no problem. Have you eaten?

ED

No, but...

SADIE

I can bring you something to eat. It's no problem. Some soup or something.

ED

Really, I don't know if it's a good idea.

SADIE

Oh, I'm sorry.

ED

No, don't be. It's just that I don't feel too well.

SADIE

That's OK. I used to volunteer at a hospital.

ED

Really?

SADIE

Yeah, I was a candy striper.

ED

You're kidding.

SADIE

What I mean is, I'm used to it. You know, sick people.

ED

Yeah? OK.

SADIE

Where do you live?

ED

4523 East Street.

SADIE

I'll be there soon.

ED

OK.

SADIE

Oh. Do you not eat meat, or anything?

ED

No. I eat anything.

SADIE

Great. Bye.

Ed hangs up the phone. He walks into the -

INT. BATHROOM

He looks in the mirror. His hair is a mess and he is unshaven. He looks tired. He turns on the shower.

INT. BEDROOM

Ed takes off his clothes and walks back into the -

INT. BATHROOM

He puts his hand under the water. It isn't warm yet, so he picks up his toothbrush and puts some paste on it.

Then he hears a piano playing, behind the sound of the shower. It can hardly be heard.

ED

Eve?

INT. EVE'S ROOM

He looks around Eve's room quickly. There is no one there. Ed goes back to the -

INT. BATHROOM

He comes back into the bathroom. The music has stopped and all that can be heard is the shower filling up the tub.

The water is about ankle-deep.

ED

Damn.

Ed reaches into the drain and pulls out a clump of Eve's hair. He throws it into the toilet and then gets in the shower. The drain is obviously still clogged up. He is up to his knees in soapy water.

INT. HALLWAY - NIGHT

As Ed comes out of the shower, he sees that it is completely dark. There is a knock on the door.

ED

Hold on! One second!

Ed grabs Eve's robe from the back of the bathroom door.

INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Ed answers the door.

SADIE, 18, is the kind of girl who always has something to say in class, who has always done her homework and who has definite ideas about her future and the future of the planet. She is innocent and na´ve, nice and well-mannered. But also pushy and manipulative, used to getting her way.

SADIE

Hi, it's me.

ED

Oh, hi.

SADIE

Are you OK?

ED

I didn't think you'd be here so fast.

SADIE

It's almost eight.

ED

Oh. I seem to be having a little trouble with time.

SADIE

I know what you mean. I'm one of those people who is always late.

ED

Come in.

SADIE

I hope you don't mind me coming over like this. It didn't occur to me that it might be a little strange until after I hung up. It's just, well, at my high school, I went to boarding school, and we were pretty close with our teachers.

ED

It's nice. Kindness. Very refreshing.

SADIE

I brought you some soup.

ED

I better get some clothes on. Make yourself at home.

SADIE

OK.

INT. BEDROOM

Ed gets dressed. As he does, he notices a pile of Eve's clothes on the floor. He picks them up and puts them in the closet, on top of a pile of Eve's dirty laundry.

INT. LIVING ROOM

When Ed comes out, Sadie has put the soup in a bowl and set a place at the table.

SADIE

I put it in a bowl for you. I hope you don't mind.

ED

Thank you.

Ed sits down and tastes the soup.

ED

It's good.

SADIE

I got it at my favorite place. You don't mind me hanging out for a little while, do you?

ED

No. I could use the company. Like I said, I haven't been feeling very well.

Sadie notices the pile of papers on Ed's desk.

SADIE

Oh, you graded our papers.

ED

Some of them.

SADIE

Can I look?

ED

Sure.

Sadie looks through the papers. She finds hers marked with a C minus.

SADIE

Oh.

ED

What is it?

SADIE

I just...I guess I though this one was better.

ED

Let me see.

Ed looks over the paper for a second. He takes a pen and crosses out the C and changes it to an A.

ED

I was in a bad mood when I graded these.

SADIE

Don't change it if it's not good.

ED

It's just a grade.

SADIE

Please don't. No. Don't. Please.

Sadie takes the paper away from him.

ED

Sorry. I didn't mean to.

SADIE

It's just. I don't think you're doing me any favors by letting me off easy. I mean, I'm hear to learn. It means a lot to me to do well in your class. You're the best teacher I've had since I came to the University.

ED

How long has that been?

SADIE

Well, I'm still a freshman, but I've met a lot of teachers and I'm very discerning. Before I took your class I went to the library and looked up your work.

ED

You're kidding.

SADIE

No. I read all your poems, or all they had. The ones in the New Yorker and in Poetry Magazine, and two short stories.

ED

What did you think?

SADIE

I loved them; the poems especially. I mean, they're dark, but they're so...true. Really. I really got into them. I photocopied one and put it on my wall. I hope you don't mind.

ED

Which one?

SADIE

"The Passion of my Youth". It is so intense. "Her eyes blew gently, purposefully by my ears, echoing gentle pulses of bliss which bounced and fired like a chill on my whole being, leaving just a trace to fuel my longing."

ED

My wife like that poem.

SADIE

You're married.

ED

Yes.

SADIE

Where's your wife?

ED

She's at her mother's. She's gone for a while.

SADIE

Oh.

There is an awkward silence.

SADIE

May I use the bathroom?

ED

Sure. Go ahead.

Sadie takes her purse and goes into the bathroom. Ed finishes his soup. The phone rings and he picks it up.

ED

Hello.

GEORGE

Is this Ed?

ED

Yes.

GEORGE

This is George Simian.

ED

Yes.

GEORGE

Where's Eve?

ED

Why do you want to talk to Eve?

GEORGE

What have you done?

ED

Excuse me?

GEORGE

You've done something. I know you have.

ED

What are you talking about?

GEORGE

The police found her car near my house. They think I have something to do with her disappearance.

ED

Maybe it's because you were fucking her.

GEORGE

You son of a bitch. What did you do? If you hurt her, I swear, I'm going to kill you.

ED

Look, she disappeared. I haven't seen her. Why do you think I called the police?

GEORGE

I'll kill you. I'll kill you, you bastard. I swear.

Ed hangs up. He is shaky, but also strangely exhilarated. He turns off the ringer on the phone and turns down the volume on the answering machine.

INT. KITCHEN

He brings the rest of the soup to the sink, scrapes it into the garbage disposal, and flicks the switch. When the food has gone down, he starts to wash the dishes. He stops and looks back to the bathroom.

INT. HALLWAY

Ed walks over to the bathroom door.

ED

Sadie?

There is no answer. He knocks on the door.

ED

Sadie? Is everything alright?

There is still no answer.

ED

I'm coming in. OK?

INT. BATHROOM

Ed opens the door. Sadie is lying on the floor, passed out. Her pants are around her knees, as if she passed out while standing up from the toilet.

Her nose is bleeding, like she might have hit it on the way down. It has bled on her sweater.

The air from the open door wakes her up, but she is in a heavy daze.

ED

Are you alright? My God. What happened?

Ed comes over to her and lifts her head. She stares at him strangely.

ED

Can you stand? Do you understand me? I'll help you to the bedroom.

Sadie notices her pants are down.

SADIE

Oh.

ED

I'll wait outside.

INT. HALLWAY

Ed waits outside and, a second later, Sadie comes out, still reeling, clutching her purse. She leans on Ed, who leads her into the bedroom.

INT. BEDROOM

Sadie lies down on the bed.

ED

You want some water.

SADIE

Yes, please.

Ed goes into the -

INT. KITCHEN

He takes a glass from the cupboard and fills it up. He stops, having noticed something on the glass. He holds the glass up to the light.

Eve's lipstick is clearly marked on the rim.

He puts that glass down and fills another.

INT. BEDROOM

When he comes back, he finds Sadie digging through her purse. She pulls out an asthma inhaler and takes a couple of big hits.

Then she sits on the bed and drinks a little water.

SADIE

I'm so embarrassed.

ED

No, don't be.

SADIE

God, my nose.

ED

Does it hurt?

SADIE

No, but the blood.

ED

Maybe you hit it when you fell.

SADIE

It was so weird. I heard someone's voice, a woman's voice. Like a scream. And then it was like all my blood left my body.

ED

Sometimes you can hear the neighbors.

SADIE

It was like it echoed around the bathroom. Maybe I imagined it. I've been taking these caffeine pills to stay awake.

ED

Just relax.

SADIE

I should go.

ED

I can't let you leave like this.

SADIE

I didn't mean to be such a burden. I'm such a loser. I am so sorry about this.

It seems that her nose has stopped bleeding, but her sweater has a surprising amount of blood on it.

ED

I'll get you a towel.

Ed leaves and then comes back with a wet towel.

He starts to wipe the blood off her nose.

SADIE

I feel better now. Thank you.

ED

Do you want me to drive you home?

SADIE

I'll be OK.

ED

Maybe you want me to call your roommate.

SADIE

My roommate moved out. She hated me. She said I was immature, do you believe that?

ED

Your friends, then.

SADIE

I don't have any friends. I don't know what it is. People don't like me here. I thought it would be a good idea to go to a school far away from home, but since I've been here, it's like, I spend all this time on my own. At my high school, my friends and I were so close. I just don't get along with people anymore. I don't know what it is.

ED

You get along with me.

SADIE

You're the first person I've met since I've been here that talks to me like a real person.

Ed walks over to the closet and takes out a sweater.

ED

You can borrow this, if you want. It's my wife's.

SADIE

She wouldn't mind.

ED

No.

SADIE

I bled so much.

Ed gets up to give her some room.

She slips out of her sweater and puts the other one on.

Sadie looks at a picture next to the bed.

SADIE

Is this your wife?

ED

That's my mother. That picture is older than it looks.

SADIE

She's so pretty.

ED

She was young when that was taken. She died a few years ago.

SADIE

That's awful. How'd she die?

ED

Cancer. It was quite an ordeal. She died very slowly.

SADIE

That's so sad. I better go, huh?

ED

It's getting late.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Ed walks her to the door.

SADIE

I'm sorry about everything.

ED

Don't be sorry. I'm glad you came.

SADIE

I'll see you tomorrow.

ED

Tomorrow?

SADIE

In school. You'll be there, right?

ED

Oh, yes. I'll be there.

SADIE

Bye.

Sadie kisses him on the cheek and then leaves.

Ed locks the door after her.

INT. BATHROOM

Ed looks at the tub in the bathroom which is full of water.

He sticks his finger deep into the drain, trying to free whatever is in there. There is another tuft of hair, and again he throws it into the toilet.

The gurgling sound that he heard before has come back, resonating through the soapy water from the drain.

INT. BASEMENT

Ed follows the gurgling sounds into the basement.

He takes a flashlight from behind the basement door and shines it at the pipes that lead from the bathtub drain. He can hear the gurgling sound running through them. It sound like they ate something they can't digest. He reaches up and touches the pipe. It seems to be leaking a little, or maybe it is condensation.

Ed traces the noise to a larger sewage pipe that runs down into the basement floor. He watches the pipe, but slowly, his attention is drawn to the shadow next to the pipe.

As he stares intently into the darkness of the shadow, a figure begins to emerge in the distance. The darkness begins to change into a long hallway. A small figure is walking towards Ed and his footsteps echo in the distance.

Ed watches, mesmerized.

The basement fades into the blackness, and now, the hallway becomes more clear.

INT. HOSPITAL

It is a very long hospital hallway, and the figure walking toward Ed is a doctor, carrying a clipboard.

DOCTOR

Mr Saxon.

ED

Yes.

DOCTOR

There's nothing we can do for her now except to alleviate any pain she may be feeling. We have her on a morphine drip and we'll keep increasing the dosage as she shows any signs of pain.

ED

I see. Can she understand me?

DOCTOR

At this point, probably not. She has so much morphine in her, I doubt she can even recognize you. But you never know. Actually, in cases like this, where the end is inevitable, I recommend that we increase the dosage on the morphine drip at an accelerated rate. There's no point in making this last longer than it has to.

ED

Whatever you think is best.

The doctor nods, then walks into the hospital room where, we see now, Ed's MOTHER is lying in a hospital bed, hooked up to a digital IV. She is old, but looks older - she's been through chemotherapy and radiation and they have all taken their toll.

She stares at Ed with confused and desperate eyes. It is hard to tell if she is looking at him or not.

The doctor, at the door, has a few words with the NURSE, who then looks into the room.

Ed sits next to his mother and takes her hand. She stares at him.

The nurse comes in and pushes a button on the digital IV. Ed watches the LED numbers on the digital IV go up. The nurse smiles an attempt at comfort, then leaves the room.

Mother reacts to the higher dosage of morphine. Her eyes get wider and more delirious. She sits up a little and tenses her muscles. She lets go of Ed's hand and starts moving her arm up and down.

She starts shouting something. At first, it is completely unintelligible, but slowly, it becomes clearer.

MOTHER

IT MEANS YOU'RE GOING TO HELL! IT MEANS YOU'RE GOING TO HELL! IT MEANS YOU'RE GOING TO HELL!

Ed stands up and backs away. He backs out of the hospital room as his mother continues to scream.

Ed backs into the hallway, which is now blackness.

As he backs away, another noise starts to echo around him. A banging. A loud banging is coming from upstairs.

Ed backs away and then runs upstairs.

INT. HALLWAY - DAY

As Ed opens the basement door, he sees that it is bright daylight again.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Ed opens the front door and before he can react, a fist hits him hard in the face.

Ed falls to the ground, next to a pile of letters that has been dropped through the slot in the door.

GEORGE SIMIAN walks in, wearing a track suit. George, 35, is a stronger man than Ed. He is better looking, too, or, at least, younger. He has a genuine honesty about him, like a big boy. It is this boyish quality that makes his anger seem uncontrollable.

GEORGE

You son of a bitch. Get up.

Ed staggers to his feet. He tries to get a swing in at George, but George grabs him by the collar, hits him again, then throws him over the coffee table. Ed hits the phone and the answering machine on the way down.

GEORGE

EVE!

When Ed doesn't say anything, George starts searching around the house.

GEORGE

(O.S.)

EVE!

Ed can hear George searching around in the other rooms.

He gets up and sits on the couch, nursing his wounds.

After a minute, George comes back into the living room.

GEORGE

What have you done?

ED

Don't hit me again.

GEORGE

You son of a bitch.

George sits down on a chair across from Ed.

GEORGE

You son of a bitch.

ED

What did you think would happen? Nothing?

GEORGE

You did something.

ED

I did what I always do. I woke up, went to my shitty job, came home and cooked dinner for my wife, who was too busy bouncing up and down on your bedsprings to cook it herself. Not exactly what I had planned for my life. The same boring shit as always. Why don't you leave?

GEORGE

I love her. I'm sorry. I know she's your wife.

George is crying. Ed, despite himself, is moved.

ED

What? Am I supposed to feel sorry for you now? Well, I won't. People think they can just carry on. They don't think that there might be consequences to their actions. You won't find sympathy here. Why don't you just leave?

GEORGE

What did you do?

ED

I didn't do anything. She didn't come home after work.

George gets up and starts to leave.

ED

Don't come back here again.

George stops when he hears this and turns towards Ed with and angry look on his face. He grabs Ed's collar, picks him up from the couch and slugs him hard across the head. Ed lands on the floor, stunned and not moving.

GEORGE

I swear. If I find out you did something to her, I'll kill you.

Ed watches George leave and stays lying on the floor as George's car can be heard driving away outside.

The telephone is lying on the floor, knocked off its cradle, just out of Ed's reach. Ed stares at it for a few seconds. It is making that beeping noise that phones make when they are off the hook too long.

He slowly gets up and limps into the bathroom.

INT. BATHROOM

He looks in the mirror. His eye is swelling up already and his lip is bruised. He washes his lip off, and then takes a towel from the bathroom.

INT. KITCHEN

He fills the towel with ice and holds it to his head.

INT. LIVING ROOM

He picks up the phone as he walks into the living room and places it on the coffee table. He sits on the couch and stares at it for a second.

Then he brings the phone over to his desk and finds Derm's business card. He sits down at the desk and calls Derm.

ED

Hello. Detective?

DERM

Mr Saxon?

ED

Yes.

DERM

I've been trying to call you.

ED

You found her.

DERM

No. I need to talk to you.

ED

Detective. George Simian was just over here. He hit me.

DERM

Are you OK?

ED

I think so.

DERM

Do you want me to call an ambulance?

ED

I don't need an ambulance.

DERM

I'll be right over.

ED

OK.

He hangs up the phone.

He sits at the desk, resting the ice on his forehead.

Then he notices something under the sofa. It grabs his attention. He gets up for a closer look.

There are dust bunnies and dust under the edge of the sofa, like it hasn't been swept for a while. Ed kneels down and tries to peer under the sofa. It is dark underneath and he can't see anything.

He reaches his fingers under and sweeps out a few dust bunnies.

Then he reaches a little further under the sofa and sweeps out Eve's pinkie finger.

He recoils at the sight of this. The finger has been neatly cut, as if by a sharp blade. Dust has clung to the clotted blood around the stump, but it is unquestionably a woman's pinkie finger.

He stares at it for a second, curiously disgusted.

He goes to pick it up, decides he doesn't want to touch it, then uses a tissue to pick it up.

He hurries to the bathroom.

INT. BATHROOM

He drops the finger into the toilet with the tissue and flushes it.

INT. LIVING ROOM

He hurries to the edge of the couch with a sponge and cleans up the small amount of blood and dust left there.

INT. KITCHEN

He squeezes the sponge out until it is clean, then puts it aside.

He lets out a huge sigh of relief.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Much of the ice has melted and the towel it was wrapped in is now soaking wet.

INT. BATHROOM

He takes the towel into the bathroom and rings it out.

Then he looks over at the toilet. The finger is still there, floating like a cigarette butt. The water is pink from the blood, the tissue is gone, but the finger floats there defiantly.

He flushes the toilet again, but this time stays to watch. The water goes down, but the finger stays buoyant and won't go down.

There is a knock on the front door.

Ed takes a bunch of toilet paper from the roll and tosses it over the finger. He flushes again, but the tank hasn't filled up yet and, if anything, this makes it longer until it will fill up again.

There is another impatient knock at the door.

ED

One second!

Ed sits there waiting, listening to the toilet tank filling.

The knocking outside is becoming more impatient.

The tank finally fills. Ed flushes and watches. This time the paper he threw in clogs the toilet and the bowl quickly fills up with water.

Ed reaches behind the toilet and turns off the water, stopping it from overflowing.

He looks in the toilet and can't see the finger through the mess of toilet paper.

There is another knock on the door.

Ed closes the toilet lid.

INT. HALLWAY

Ed shuts the bathroom door firmly, takes a breath, and hurries out to meet Derm.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Ed answers the door. Derm comes in with two assistants, MAZUREK and SNYDER. Snyder is holding Ed's morning paper.

DERM

Damn. You did take a couple of blows, didn't you.

ED

I was just putting some ice on it.

DERM

That's the best thing for it. Try to keep the swelling down. It's going to look worse tomorrow. You don't want to have a doctor examine you?

ED

It's not necessary.

DERM

Mr Saxon, Officer Mazurek and Officer Snyder. They'll be assisting me.

ED

Hi.

MAZUREK

How's it going?

SNYDER

Here. I brought this in.

Snyder hands Ed the newspaper.

ED

Thanks.

DERM

You say it was George Simian who hit you?

ED

Yes, he did. He came barreling in here and hit me. Several times.

DERM

Do you have any idea why he would come here?

ED

Because he's a fucking asshole.

DERM

I should say that I'm concerned that he would come here. Mr Simian has a history of violent behavior, in regards to domestic disputes.

ED

What kind of history?

DERM

Nothing too serious. No felonies. But enough, I think, to warrant some concern. With your permission, I'd like to fill in a complaint report for his assault on you, and as soon as we're finished here, I'll send these two over to arrest him, assuming he can be found.

ED

You think he did something to Eve?

DERM

We don't have any evidence that he's even seen your wife she left her office and disappeared. We'll be arresting him solely for his assault on you.

ED

But Eve's car. You said you found her car near his house.

DERM

It does no one any good to jump to conclusions.

ED

I guess I misunderstood.

DERM

We're going to have to take some pictures of you for the complaint report. The pictures will be used as evidence against Mr Simian if this matter does, eventually, go to trial.

ED

Fine.

Derm turns to Snyder, who has heard this conversation, and Snyder begins to take pictures of Ed.

DERM

Mr Saxon. These investigations can be quite demanding, especially when experiencing the trauma of loss. Do you understand what I am saying?

ED

Yes.

DERM

If you feel that you need someone to talk to, at any time, there are people, sometimes victims of similar situation themselves, who are will to listen and would like to help.

He hands Ed a business card which reads Human Support Services, and has some address and phone information on it.

DERM

Are you aware that your wife has been having an affair?

ED

With George Simian?

DERM

Yes.

ED

The P.E. teacher. I guess I should have known.

DERM

Apparently your wife has been seeing him for some time. Almost a year, in fact.

ED

A year?

DERM

Do you consider that you and your wife have a normal relationship?

ED

I don't know. Normal relationship. We get on each other's nerves, have sex a few times a year, order pizza on Fridays. We've been married for ten years. It doesn't stay rosy forever. Maybe it isn't paradise, but that doesn't mean that I don't love her.

DERM

Are you having any other relationships?

ED

No.

DERM

Does your wife keep a diary?

ED

No. She isn't the type.

DERM

Mr Saxon. May I be frank?

ED

Yes. Please.

DERM

Cases involving missing persons are not uncommon. In many cases, and that is not to say in every case, but in many cases, the results are unfortunate.

ED

My God.

DERM

I'm not saying that you should give up hope, but my experience tells me that you should prepare yourself for the worst. Now, having said that, we will do everything in our power to find your wife.

ED

I understand.

DERM

Now, it's best if we can gather as much information as possible, as quickly as possible. I'm sure you understand the urgency here.

ED

Of course.

DERM

It will be necessary for us to search through some of your wife's personal items.

ED

I'm sure I can find whatever it is that you want.

DERM

It's really in your wife's best interests if you allow us to do it. We won't disturb anything or touch anything without your permission.

ED

Alright.

DERM

How about we start in the bedroom?

ED

The bedroom.

DERM

Yes.

ED

Right. I'll show you.

Ed stands up and leads them into the bedroom.

INT. HALLWAY

They pass by the bathroom. The gurgling noises from the plumbing echo around the hallway, and while the police don't seem to pay it any mind, Ed can definitely hear it.

INT. BEDROOM

Ed looks around the bedroom quickly before they go in.

ED

Here you go. It's sort of a mess.

DERM

Do you know where your wife keeps her credit card receipts?

ED

Yes. Sure. This way.

Ed leads Derm to Eve's room, leaving the two assistants in the bedroom.

INT. EVE'S ROOM

Ed goes over to Eve's writing desk and looks over the papers lying on top.

DERM

Nice room.

ED

You like it?

DERM

Yeah. Very Magritte. It's like a nursery.

ED

I guess it is. I always through it was more of a conservatory.

DERM

With the piano.

ED

Right. She plays in here sometimes. It's nice. We always wanted to fix up the whole house, but, this is the only room we got to.

DERM

Things always cost more than you think.

ED

Yeah, I don't know what happened. Anyway, we share a credit card, but she mostly uses her own.

DERM

If someone has taken your wife, there's a chance they might have used one of her credit cards. Or she might have used it herself.

Ed pulls at the locked drawer in the writing table.

ED

I think she keeps the receipts in here, but I don't have a key.

Derm looks at the lock.

DERM

Let me try.

Ed gets out of the way and Derm sits in the chair to examine the lock more closely. He presses his thumbs against the desk and breaks the wood around the lock, forcing the drawer open.

DERM

There we go.

ED

I could have done it if I wanted to break it.

DERM

I'm sure she'll understand.

ED

She won't. I promise.

Ed sits back down and searches through the drawer. He finds some credit card receipts and sorts through them.

MAZUREK

Detective Derm.

Mazurek comes into the office carrying Sadie's sweater, which has blood all over it.

Snyder follows Mazurek in and looks over Mazurek's shoulder.

MAZUREK

It was under the bed, sir.

Derm takes the sweater and looks at the blood on it.

DERM

Is this your wife's?

ED

No.

DERM

There's blood on this sweater, Mr Saxon.

ED

Yes, I know. A student. Detective, this is going to sound awkward, I guess, but a student of mine came to the house yesterday, after you were here. She was nervous, I suppose. She had a bloody nose.

DERM

Why would she have been nervous?

ED

I don't know, but she seemed nervous.

DERM

That is awkward, isn't it.

ED

I suppose it is. I gave her one of my wife's sweaters to wear home. She must have left that one by accident.

DERM

By accident? Under the bed?

ED

I don't know.

DERM

What was her name?

ED

Sadie. Sadie Crumb.

Derm finds a small, printed name-tag reading Sadie Crumb sewn into the collar. Derm shows it to Mazurek and then indicates for him to go back to the bedroom.

Derm shows the label to Ed.

DERM

Do you have this girl's phone number? I'd like to talk to her.

ED

I don't think so. Maybe.

Ed gets up and walks into the -

INT. LIVING ROOM

- where his desk is. He searches around and quickly finds a photocopy of a hand-written list of phone numbers.

DERM

I should call her.

ED

Sure. Here.

He hands him the phone. Derm dials the number.

ED

I didn't tell her about my wife. I didn't see any reason to.

Derm reaches into his pocket and pulls out a roll of Tums. He takes a couple and chews them and it obviously puts a bad taste in his mouth.

DERM

Could I trouble you for a glass of water?

ED

Sure.

Ed walks into the -

INT. HALLWAY

He passes by the bathroom and stops by the bedroom door. He looks into the bedroom where the officers are searching through his stuff. They find a copy of Hustler Magazine and they chuckle about it, before they notice Ed watching them.

As he watches, he can hear Derm talking to Sadie.

DERM

(O.S.)

Hi. May I speak to Sadie Crumb, please? This is Detective Derm of the Seattle Police Department. Can I ask you a few questions?

The officers turn and stare at Ed until he leaves.

INT. KITCHEN

Ed takes a glass from the cupboard. He takes it over to the sink and fills it with water. The tap makes enough noise so that he can't hear anything else.

INT. HALLWAY

As Ed passes the bathroom door, the gurgling noises from the plumbing get louder. He makes sure the door is firmly shot and then brings the glass of water to Derm.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Derm hangs up the phone and drinks the water.

DERM

Thank you.

ED

Well?

DERM

She sounded very nice. You know, I think she left her sweater under your bed on purpose.

ED

Why would she do that?

DERM

So that she'd have a reason to come back.

ED

I see.

Derm sees an open box of Skin-EE( cookies.

DERM

Hey. My wife loves those things. I swear, she eats them by the box. I think they taste like shit.

ED

I know. I hate them. Sometimes I think she eats them just to spite me.

MAZUREK

Detective Derm.

Derm looks at Ed, then goes into the other room. Ed follows.

INT. HALLWAY

DERM

Did you go to work today, Mr Saxon?

ED

No. I guess I didn't.

DERM

If you'd like, I can call the University for you and explain the situation. It might help. I'm sure they would understand.

ED

I don't think it's necessary.

DERM

Well, the offer stands if you change your mind later.

ED

It's just that, I don't want them to know anything about all this. At least not yet.

DERM

I understand.

They walk into the -

INT. BEDROOM

Mazurek is holding a small, fabric-bound writing book.

DERM

What's that?

MAZUREK

Looks like a diary, sir.

DERM

Let's have a look.

Derm looks it over, reads the last couple of entries quickly.

DERM

Where'd you find this?

MAZUREK

Behind the bedside table.

ED

I didn't know.

DERM

We have to keep some things to ourselves, or we'd go crazy. This is your wife's handwriting?

He shows him the diary.

ED

Yes. Can I look at that?

DERM

Of course.

Ed takes the diary and wanders into Eve's room, flipping through it as he walks.

INT. EVE'S ROOM

Ed flips through the last pages of the diary. He reads for a minute. Some distant noises are coming from the neighbor's house. While we can't hear exactly what is being said, it is clear that a man is saying something funny and a woman is laughing hysterically.

Ed reads for a minute until, astonished, he puts it down and looks up at Derm, who is standing in the doorway watching him.

ED

I guess you never really know anyone.

DERM

You didn't know that you're wife is pregnant?

ED

No.

DERM

I'm sorry. I talked to her doctor yesterday. I thought you knew.

Mazurek comes up behind Derm and says something inaudibly in his ear.

DERM

Is it alright if Mazurek uses the bathroom?

ED

Excuse me?

DERM

The bathroom. May we use the bathroom? We might be here for a while.

ED

No. The toilet is stuffed up. Actually. Do you mind leaving? I just would like to be alone.

DERM

Mr Saxon. I'm sorry about the intrusions into your privacy, but you must understand: my first priority is finding your wife. There is still a great deal to go over. We might want to notify the press.

ED

The press?

DERM

In cases like this, when we don't have many substantial leads, getting a picture of your wife on TV can be invaluably helpful.

ED

I don't know if I'm comfortable with that.

DERM

We still have options left, but without a thorough search of your wife's belongings, those options are extremely limited.

ED

I want to be helpful, but I really don't see how, if you think she was kidnapped, I don't see how it helps you to search around our things.

DERM

We don't know that she was kidnapped. We can't draw those kinds of conclusions. She could have simply decided that she needed some time alone. We have to consider every possibility.

ED

I just don't see how it helps.

DERM

I don't want to argue with you. We're trying to help you. This is our job.

ED

I understand.

DERM

It is in the best interest of your wife that you let us do that job without impediment.

ED

I don't want to get in the way. I just would like some time alone. You can comes back tomorrow, but, please. I'm very tired. I know it might seem irrational, but I haven't slept in a long time and this is all extremely overwhelming. Please. I need to be alone.

DERM

Certainly. If I could just take those receipts.

ED

Sure. Here. Take them all.

The receipts are on the desk in front of him and he hands them to Derm.

Derm reaches out for the diary.

ED

I'd like to keep this.

DERM

There are some things it may be better not to know, especially if your wife comes back.

ED

I can give it to you tomorrow, if you still want it.

Ed leaves the diary on Eve's writing table and walks the officers out.

INT. LIVING ROOM

DERM

Mr Saxon. Is there something wrong with your answering machine?

ED

Yes. It broke when I fell on it.

DERM

You haven't been answering your phone.

ED

It hasn't rung.

Derm looks at the phone and sees the ringer is turned off.

DERM

The ringer is off.

ED

Oh. I must have turned it off.

DERM

What if your wife calls?

DERM

Yes. Of course. I wasn't thinking.

DERM

Could you please leave the phone on from now on?

ED

Yes. I thought I was. OK. Thank you.

DERM

I'll be calling to let you know how things go with Mr Simian.

ED

Yes. Thank you.

Derm and the officers leave.

Ed lets out a sigh of relief. He touches his forehead and it obviously hurts.

He goes back into the bathroom.

INT. BATHROOM

He opens the medicine cabinet and searches through the plethora of over-the-counter medicine crowding the shelves. He takes a bottle of Midol, or some other feminine pain-killer. He takes a few of them and chases them down with a handful of tap water.

Then he turns to the toilet, lifts the lid and looks at the stuffed-up mess.

He rolls up his sleeve and sticks his hand in the bowl. He searches around for the finger.

The phone rings. He gives up searching and, with some wet toilet paper stuck to his arm, hurries to answer the phone.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Ed picks up the phone.

ED

Hello.

MRS MASTRIONI

Mr Saxon. This is Mrs Mastrioni, from the Dean's office.

ED

Yes?

MRS MASTRIONI

Mr Saxon. You are supposed to call us when you plan on missing class. There were students waiting for you.

ED

Yes. I know. I'm just having some personal problems.

MRS MASTRIONI

Anyway, the Dean wants to see you.

ED

The Dean?

MRS MASTRIONI

Yes. Can you come in today?

ED

No. What does he want to see me about?

MRS MASTRIONI

I don't know.

ED

Is it about me missing classes?

MRS MASTRIONI

It might be.

ED

What's that supposed to mean?

MRS MASTRIONI

It means that if I was the Dean, and I wanted to see you, that is what it would be about.

ED

What kind of bullshit is that?

MRS MASTRIONI

There's no need to get upset, Mr Saxon.

ED

Am I being fired? Is that it?

MRS MASTRIONI

Look, I don't know. The Dean said he wanted to see you.

ED

Well, I can't see him.

MRS MASTRIONI

Personal problems?

ED

That's right. Yes.

MRS MASTRIONI

That's too bad.

ED

Yes it is too bad. Because I know what you're trying to do.

MRS MASTRIONI

Really? What's that?

ED

You know what? Why don't you tell the Dean to go fuck himself?

MRS MASTRIONI

Mr Saxon...

ED

And you go fuck yourself too.

MRS MASTRIONI

Does this mean that you won't be coming to class tomorrow?

ED

Fuck you!

Ed slams the phone down.

INT. BATHROOM

Ed takes the bottle of Midol from the medicine cabinet and takes a few more.

Then he notices a trail of pink water leading from the toilet, along the bathroom floor and into the hallway.

He follows the trail.

INT. HALLWAY

The trail leads up to the pinkie finger. Ed watches while the finger moves, inchworm-like, across the floor, toward Eve's room, leaving a wet trail behind it.

Ed watches for a second while he decides what to do.

He quickly grabs the finger and takes it to the kitchen sink. He drops it in the sink, pushes it down the drain and flicks the garbage disposal on. He turns the water on and leaves it running until it sounds like there is nothing left of the finger.

When he turns it off, he sticks his hand in, searching for any remnants of the finger. It appears to have gone down.

He takes the sponge and wets it.

INT. HALLWAY

He wipes up the trail of the finger, following it back into the bathroom.

INT. BATHROOM

He looks at the toilet, which is still stuffed up.

INT. BASEMENT

Ed searches around the basement for a plunger. The basement is full of strange sounds, all ruminating from the exposed pipes.

He finds a plunger among some other tools and starts back upstairs, but on his way upstairs, he finds that there is a puddle of water on the floor. He traces the source of the puddle to the pipe that was only moist before. It is now dripping slowly and a large pool of dirty water is collecting in the shallow recess of the cement floor.

Ed stares into the murky, black pool.

There is a knock on the door upstairs and Ed turns to answer it.

INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Ed answers the door and sees that it is now dark outside.

GEOFFREY COSTAS stands outside. Geoffrey, 54, is a wise, patient man. He is formal and calm in his manner, but these qualities belie a warm emotional vulnerability. Physically, he is not small or weak. One gets the impression that he wasn't always so kind.

GEOFFREY

Mr Saxon?

ED

Yes.

GEOFFREY

Hello. My name is Geoffrey Costas. I'm from Human Support Services.

ED

I'm not interested.

GEOFFREY

Detective Derm asked me to stop by.

He hands him a business card. Ed takes the card and looks it over.

GEOFFREY

You've been hit.

ED

I'm fine. I don't need a doctor.

He tries to hand the card back.

GEOFFREY

Oh, I'm not a physician. I'm a psychiatrist. But I'm not here on business. This is my time off.

ED

This is a personal visit? I don't understand.

GEOFFREY

Human Services is a volunteer organization. We offer assistance to victims of traumatic crimes.

ED

What kind of assistance?

GEOFFREY

Advice, support, a shoulder to cry on.

ED

Why would I want to cry on your shoulder?

GEOFFREY

Maybe you just want someone to talk to. It can be a lonely world when those you love are taken from you.

ED

No. I don't think so.

GEOFFREY

Well, you have my card. If you feel like talking at another time, please feel free to call.

ED

Actually, there is something you can help me with. I've been having trouble sleeping.

GEOFFREY

That's understandable, under the circumstances.

ED

Is there something you can give me?

GEOFFREY

You mean a prescription?

ED

You're a doctor, aren't you?

GEOFFREY

Yes.

ED

I can't seem to find anything strong enough.

GEOFFREY

You're anxious.

ED

Yes. I can't sleep. It makes me anxious. Or maybe I can't sleep because I'm anxious. I don't know.

GEOFFREY

How long has this been going on?

ED

A long time.

GEOFFREY

Weeks?

ED

Oh, yes.

GEOFFREY

You must have slept some.

ED

Maybe I do. But I don't seem to get the benefits. I never feel rested. There just doesn't seem to be the time to relax anymore. I'm always two steps behind. I have to stop the thinking. The longer I stay awake, the more my thoughts become frantic, irrational. If I don't get some sleep soon, nothing is going to make any sense.

GEOFFREY

I see. May I come in?

ED

Yes. Come in.

Geoffrey comes in and places his briefcase on the table inside.

GEOFFREY

There are times when the pressures of everyday life become overwhelming. As a doctor, I notice more and more of my patients experiencing similar symptoms. I'm afraid it's a sign of the times, as much as anything else.

ED

Can you help me?

GEOFFREY

Like I said, I'm not here on a professional basis. Your insomnia is merely a symptom of a greater unwholesomeness. A lasting treatment may be extremely hard to come by. There's very little we can hope to accomplish with pharmaceuticals alone. However, under the circumstances, I can give you something to help you sleep. Do you have health insurance?

ED

Yes, through work.

Geoffrey takes a prescription pad from his briefcase and scribbles out a prescription.

GEOFFREY

The prescription I'm going to write for you is expensive, so I recommend you save the receipt for your insurance company. I'm sure they'll cover it. These pills are quite new. I've been prescribing them to my patients who travel a great deal, for their jet lag. They will help stabilize your internal clock by chemically suppressing certain amino acids in your brain.

ED

Will it help me sleep?

GEOFFREY

Oh, yes. Now, take two at night, and don't take more than six in a day. OK?

ED

Yes. Thank you.

Geoffrey shuts his briefcase and starts to leave.

GEOFFREY

I'm glad I could help. How about I check in on you tomorrow afternoon?

ED

Tomorrow?

GEOFFREY

To see how you're doing?

ED

I don't know.

GEOFFREY

For what it's worth, I understand your position better than you think. Don't shut it all out. Sometimes that fragile connection to the rest of the world is all we have. I sincerely hope things turn out for you. Tomorrow then?

ED

Tomorrow.

Ed shuts the door behind Geoffrey.

INT. BATHROOM

Ed works the plunger in the toilet. The water is still pink from the finger, but also might be pink from the pink toilet paper that is now broken up and mixed in with the water.

He plunges the toilet a few more times and then stops to see if it is working. The water slowly goes down. He reaches behind the toilet and turns the water back on. He flushes it and it seems to be working again, albeit weakly.

He sits on the edge of the bathtub and takes a breath. The water in the tub hasn't gone down, so he takes the plunger and starts to work it over the drain.

After a minute, he sees that it isn't working. He reaches into the drain and pulls out a huge clump of scum-filled hair. It is repulsive to Ed. He throws it into the toilet.

The water in the bathtub still hasn't gone down.

INT. KITCHEN

He searches under the sink through an exhaustive supply of cleaning supplies. He eventually pulls out a king-size container of Drano.

INT. BATHROOM

He reads the back of the container quickly, then pours the whole thing down the drain.

He watches it for a second, waiting for it to go down.

Slowly, then softly, the piano can be heard playing in the other room.

Ed listens to it before following it down the hallway.

INT. HALLWAY

The lamp on Eve's writing desk is on and it lights up the end of the hallway. The music still seems to be coming from her room.

INT. EVE'S ROOM

Ed comes in and looks around the room. There is no one playing the piano, but the music continues over the rest of the scene.

Ed's attention turns to the diary, which is still sitting on the desk where he left it. Ed sits in the chair and starts paging through Eve's diary. The piano continues playing.

We hear Eve's voice as it must have been when she was writing.

EVE

(V.O.)

More than three weeks late. Damn. I'm so stupid. I haven't told George because I'm sure he would use this as an excuse to pressure me to leave Ed. And how can I tell Ed. There's no way he could be the father. We haven't had sex in months. He would know it isn't is.

Ed flips back a few pages.

As he does, the camera starts to travel around the room, passing the piano, and then a few pictures from Eve's past, then some souvenirs on a shelf.

EVE

(V.O.)

Saw a movie last night with George. It was awful; just the kind of movie Ed hates. I wanted to tell him about it, but I couldn't. I told him I was at Susie's. George loved it, of course. I think he likes every movie. Still, it was nice to go out on a date like that. It was fun.

INT. HALLWAY

Now the camera has turned to the empty hallway. It slowly moves toward the bathroom.

EVE

(V.O.)

Ed came home in a shitty mood and started picking a fight with me about a coffee cup I broke last week. It was the last thing I needed, today especially. Sometimes I fucking hate him. He can be such a shit.

INT. KITCHEN

The camera pans over the glass that has Eve's lipstick on it.

EVE

(V.O.)

I can't believe what a jock George is. I knew he worked out, but he really takes car of himself. After we had sex, I was embarrassed to let him see me naked. How could I have gotten so fat? I'm going back to the gym tomorrow. I've really let myself go to pot. Maybe I'll get him a softball bat for his birthday next week.

INT. BATHROOM

The camera comes into the bathroom and passes over all of Eve's things sitting on the back of the toilet.

EVE

(V.O.)

Ed doesn't sleep anymore. He's beginning to scare me. He takes all these pills to help him sleep, but they only make it worse. And he hates me. I can see it in his eyes. He blames me for everything that went wrong in his life. Maybe he's right. Maybe it is my fault. I feel so guilty about George that I can't argue with him anymore. I can't keep this up much longer. Fuck it. I'm going to tell him about George tomorrow. He knows anyway. He must know. He's been acting so weird. Poor Ed. He used to have so much ambition. And he's so talented. I just wish things had turned out better.

The camera turns toward the bathtub, and focuses slowly in on the drain. A few bubbles pop out from under the water and the water starts to drain out. As the camera dollies in on the drain, the last of the murky water disappears.

Ed, now standing in the bathroom, strikes a match and holds it up to the diary until the corner finally catches on fire. He fans out the pages so that it will catch more.

When he can't hold it anymore, he drops it into the bathtub and watches it burn. He watches it until it has burnt itself out, burning into a pile of thick, black ashes.

INT. HALLWAY

Ed looks up at the smoke alarm. He tries to pull it down, but it is out of his reach.

Ed grabs a chair from the living room and stands on it so that he can reach the alarm. He pulls the cover off the alarm and then the battery out and the alarm is finally silenced.

Then he hears voices coming from outside the front door.

He approaches the front door cautiously, then puts his ear up to the door and listens. The voices are muted and whispered, but Ed can still hear what is being said, although it is hard to tell who is talking.

HARVEY

(O.S.)

No. I won't.

SADIE

(O.S.)

You are so crazy.

HARVEY

(O.S.)

I'm crazy? What about you?

SADIE

(O.S.)

Quiet. He's going to hear you.

HARVEY

(O.S.)

So what if he hears me. Who is he, anyway?

SADIE

(O.S.)

God, you are being such an asshole.

Ed opens the door quickly.

EXT. PORCH - NIGHT

Sadie and Harvey freeze like caught children.

HARVEY, 19, looks younger than his is; his facial hair isn't capable yet of filling out his meager goatee. He seems hurt, like a spoiled child who hasn't gotten his way.

ED

What's going on?

SADIE

Christ. I'm so sorry.

HARVEY

Who's this? Is this him?

SADIE

Will you shut up?

HARVEY

He's so old.

ED

Excuse me?

SADIE

Can we just go inside? Please?

Ed lets Sadie inside.

HARVEY

So that's it? You're going with him now?

SADIE

You really don't understand anything.

HARVEY

You said you loved me.

SADIE

Jesus. Would you shut up? You are so embarrassing.

HARVEY

Embarrassing? I'll tell you what's embarrassing. You with this fucking geriatric old man. That's embarrassing.

ED

You little shit.

Ed makes a move toward Harvey, but Harvey backs away quickly.

HARVEY

Don't touch me!

SADIE

Let's just go in, OK? He'll leave.

HARVEY

User.

SADIE

Stalker. Psycho.

HARVEY

Slut.

Sadie slams the door on him.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Sadie stands staring at the floor.

SADIE

I can't believe that. You know, he followed me here.

ED

He followed you?

SADIE

Yeah. Do you believe it? Oh my God. What happened to you?

ED

Somebody hit me.

SADIE

Are you alright?

ED

I'm fine.

SADIE

Who hit you?

ED

I really don't want to get into it.

SADIE

I nearly had a heart attack when the police called me.

ED

What did they ask you?

SADIE

Just about me being here. About what happened.

ED

But nothing happened.

SADIE

That's what I told them.

ED

They found your sweater. It has blood all over it.

SADIE

You're kidding.

ED

You left it under the bed.

SADIE

Oh, yeah. Damn. I don't know why I do things like that.

ED

What if my wife had found it?

SADIE

Oh. Is she here?

ED

No. Look, Sadie. I don't want you to get the wrong idea.

SADIE

Don't be mad. It's just that I worry too much. You didn't come to class again. And you said you would. I started getting all these ideas. I called you, but nobody answered. I meant to bring your wife's sweater back, but I forgot it.

ED

Actually, I'm glad you're here. Can you do me a favor?

SADIE

Sure. Anything.

ED

I have to get a prescription filled.

SADIE

No problem.

Ed finds the prescription on his desk.

ED

I'd go myself, but I'm expecting a phone call.

SADIE

Sure.

He hands her the prescription.

ED

There's a twenty-four pharmacy on Market.

SADIE

I know the one. I go there all the time. It's like my second home.

ED

I'll give you my credit card.

Ed finds his wallet and hands her the card.

SADIE

I'll be back in a minute.

ED

Thank you.

Sadie skips out the door and Ed shuts it behind her.

INT. BATHROOM

Ed turns on the shower, washing the ashes down the drain.

After he's watched them go down, he takes a sponge and cleans off the burnt mark in the tub as best he can. He turns the shower on, rinsing it out.

He turns the shower off and hears the phone is ringing.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Ed picks up the phone.

DERM

Mr Saxon? Detective Derm.

ED

Yes, hi.

DERM

I wanted to let you know that we've taken Mr Simian into custody.

ED

I understand.

DERM

We found him at his place of work.

ED

At the school?

DERM

Yes. We arrested him there. He'll come up for arraignment tomorrow morning and then, as far as I can tell, he'll probably be released on his own recognizance.

ED

I see.

DERM

It's just standard procedure, but I thought I'd keep you informed.

ED

Yes. Thank you. Did he say anything about Eve?

DERM

Try to rest, Mr Saxon. We have a lot of ground to cover tomorrow.

ED

I will. Thank you.

DERM

Good night.

Ed hangs up the phone.

Then he hears some sounds coming from Eve's room.

INT. EVE'S ROOM

Ed takes a few steps into Eve's room. He traces the noises to the window and looks out at the neighbor's house.

The light is on in the neighbor's window, and there are some vague shadows moving around on the closed curtain. As the noises get louder, it soon becomes clear that the neighbors are having sex.

Ed peers out at the light in the window, listening to the woman's increasing moans. The woman seems to be in some sort of painful, orgasmic delight. In other words, it mostly sounds like she is having a good time, but there should be a growing suspicion that not all is right.

WOMAN

(O.S.)

Oh. Oh. Oh! Oh! OH! OH! NO! NO! NO!

Ed backs slowly away from the window. He hears someone knocking on the front door.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Ed opens the door and Sadie comes in holding a colorful paper bag.

ED

Thank you.

Ed takes the bag from Sadie and goes into the kitchen.

INT. KITCHEN

Sadie follows him in.

Ed opens the pills quickly and swallows three of them with a glass of water.

SADIE

Those pills cost a lot. They must be strong.

ED

They're sleeping pills. I've been having trouble sleeping.

SADIE

You must have anxiety. I can never get to sleep when I'm anxious.

ED

I am anxious. Yes.

Sadie takes some other stuff out of the bag. One of the items is an individually wrapped Skin-EE( fat-free cookie, chocolate, chocolate chip.

SADIE

I got you some peroxide and stuff. And a cookie. I haven't eaten today.

ED

You put it all on my credit card, right?

SADIE

Actually, I paid for it. They wouldn't take your card.

ED

Why not?

SADIE

They said you hadn't paid your bill, on the phone. They called the credit card people when it didn't go through.

ED

Damn. Well, I'll pay you back.

SADIE

It's OK. I charged it to my Dad. I don't even pay the bill.

ED

No, those pills are expensive. And my insurance will cover it anyway.

SADIE

Pay me back later, then. Really, it's OK.

ED

Are you sure?

SADIE

It's fine. I swear.

Sadie looks at the cuts on his face.

SADIE

Your face must hurt.

ED

No. I don't seem to feel anything.

SADIE

It's nasty.

Sadie takes a closer look.

SADIE

Here. Sit down.

She sits Ed down at the kitchen table, under a light, and sits across from him, then takes the peroxide and some cotton swabs she bought at the pharmacy and starts to dress his wounds.

ED

I've never been hit before.

SADIE

Me neither.

ED

It's not so bad, really. It's humbling, but I like the effect it seems to have on people. It seems to make them more compassionate. There's a competitive market for suffering in the world. It's difficult to stand out from the handicapped and the homeless and the politically oppressed. Sometimes a little advertising helps remind people that you're a human being.

SADIE

It does make you look sort of cute, in a pathetic kind of way.

ED

Sadie.

SADIE

Are you really married?

ED

What? You think I just made it up?

SADIE

I don't know. Some people just say they're married, you know, because maybe they think it's more respectable or something.

ED

I'm not one of those people.

SADIE

I didn't mean to imply anything. It's just that you act sort of weird.

ED

I act weird?

SADIE

Not weird, really. Worried, I guess. Secretive. Like you're worried I might find out something about you.

ED

You don't want to get involved with my problems.

SADIE

Maybe I do.

ED

Believe me, you don't.

SADIE

I didn't mean to pry. Well, maybe I did. I'll just put a band-aid on it.

ED

Would you like a drink? I'm going to have one. 1tt1He finds a bottle of wine.

SADIE

You're not supposed to mix wine with sleeping pills. It increases the amount of medicine that's absorbed into the bloodstream. 1tt1Ed searches for a corkscrew and starts to open the bottle.

ED

I need all the help I can get.

SADIE

It's dangerous.

ED

It's just wine. I'll only have a glass. 1tt1He offers her some and she nods. He pours her a glass. Sadie takes her glass into the living room. Ed downs his glass of wine and refills it quickly before following her.

INT. LIVING ROOM 1tt1She sits down at his desk.

SADIE

Are you working on anything new?

ED

No. I don't write anymore.

SADIE

Why not?

ED

I just don't have the time. I have to work all day. Time just slips by.

SADIE

I know what you mean. There's not enough time in the day.

ED

Not as much as there used to be.

SADIE

There used to be more?

ED

Yes. Before I had to work there was plenty of time.

SADIE

But you had all that stuff published.

ED

Sure, but it didn't pay very much. I had a lot of debts from school that needed to be paid off. And then, credit cards. And then I got married, bought a house. Life comes with all these expenses. And poetry just doesn't pay. I thought working at the University would at least give me summers off.

SADIE

Doesn't it?

ED

Not really. No. 1tt1There is a knock on the door. The idea that someone else might see them together makes it awkward for both of them. 1tt1Ed freezes for what seems like a long time; long enough for whoever it is to knock again.

ED

I better see who that is.

SADIE

Yeah. 1tt1Ed goes over to the door and opens it cautiously. It is Eve's friend, SUSIE.

SUSIE

Hi, it's me.

ED

Oh, hi Susie. 1tt1She is about to walk in, when Ed blocks her way. She can see Sadie sitting at Ed's desk holding a glass of wine.

ED

Eve's not here.

SUSIE

Oh. She came back though, didn't she?

ED

No, she didn't.

SUSIE

Oh no. Can I come in?

EXT. PORCH - NIGHT 1tt1Ed, rather than let her in, pushes her outside and shuts the door behind her.

ED

No. I'm busy right now. I called the police.

SUSIE

What did they say?

ED

They're working on it. You can call them if you want. 1tt1Ed finds Derm's card in his pocket and hands it to her.

SUSIE

Aren't you worried?

ED

Of course I'm worried. I'm just working right now. This girl is one of my students. She wanted some help on an assignment. She doesn't know anything about Eve being missing.

SUSIE

What happened to you?

ED

George Simian hit me.

SUSIE

George?

ED

You know him. It figures. 1tt1Susie starts crying. Ed stares at her helplessly, then goes back inside.

SUSIE

Wait. 1tt1Ed stops.

SUSIE

Can I come back later?

ED

It's late. I just took some sleeping pills. I haven't slept much since this all started. Why don't you come back tomorrow?

SUSIE

Tomorrow?

ED

Good night, Susie.

Ed walks back in, leaving Susie standing on the porch.

INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Ed waits by the door until he hears her footsteps walking away outside.

Sadie stands up, looking nervous.

SADIE 2t2Is that your wife?

ED 2t2No. It was a friend of hers.

SADIE 2t2I should go.

ED 2t2No. Why?

SADIE 2t2You must be tired. Those pills must be working.

ED 2t2I don't think they're working at all.

SADIE 2t2Still. You're married, right?

ED 2t2Yeah, but, please don't go. Please. Time has a way of slowing down when you're around.

SADIE 2t2Really? For me, too.

ED 2t2So you'll stay?

SADIE 2t2If you want me to.

Ed comes over to her and kisses her.

SADIE 2t2Can I ask you something?

ED 2t2What?

SADIE 2t2Do you think my writing is good?

ED 2t2You've done some good work.

SADIE 2t2Yeah. C minus good.

ED 2t2I told you, I was in a bad mood when I graded that.

SADIE 2t2I guess so.

She is unresponsive at first.

SADIE

(to herself) 2t2What am I doing?

They kiss for a minute, then Ed slips his hand under the back of Sadie's sweater.

She kisses him again.

INT. BEDROOM

Sadie turns the lights off and we can only see by the light coming in from the hallway.

Ed lies on the bed and Sadie lies next to him, under the covers. Ed slips his hand under the back of her sweater and fiddles with her bra while they kiss.

The gurgling sound starts up again, and while Sadie doesn't notice, or doesn't hear it, it becomes increasingly distracting to Ed. He looks to the bathroom where the noise is coming from.

INT. BATHROOM

The camera focuses in on the drain. The water in the bathtub starts rising again.

INT. BEDROOM

Sadie breaks away from him, sits up and takes off her sweater. Ed takes off his shirt.

Ed's kisses move around the side of her neck. As he reaches her ear, he looks up and notices Eve's clothes sitting on the chair.

INT. BATHROOM

The water is rising slowly, but we can see solid stuff (the ashes from the diary are clearly part of the muck) seeping out of the drain with the water. It is a cloudy, dark, disgusting water which probably stinks too.

INT. BEDROOM

Ed is trying to concentrate on Sadie, but he notices the closet door is open and there are some dresses blowing around inside.

And the noise from the bathroom is getting louder.

He turns Sadie onto her back, turning himself away from the closet. His kisses run down her chest until he gets to her jeans. He unbuttons her jeans and starts to pull them off, kissing as he goes.

Ed has taken her pants off, but his passion and enthusiasm has faded, and he stops and stares off into space, towards the bathroom. He is spooked.

SADIE 2t2What's wrong?

He looks down and sees Sadie staring at him.

ED 2t2I don't know. Maybe it's those pills. I don't know.

SADIE 2t2Just relax. Lie back.

Sadie gently pushes him back and starts to go down on him.

Ed get more uptight.

ED 2t2No. Please. Just stop.

She keeps trying until Ed is forced to push her away.

ED 2t2It's just not working. OK?

SADIE 2t2Alright. I'm sorry.

Sadie turns away. She's upset.

SADIE 2t2Maybe I should go.

ED 2t2No. Please, don't. It's my fault. Please. Don't go.

SADIE 2t2Damn, I'm so stupid.

ED 2t2No, it's me. Please.

SADIE 2t2This was a mistake.

Sadie gets up and puts on her shirt. She grabs the rest of her clothes and goes into the living room.

Ed stares after her, listening to her finish dressing herself and then leave.

The clock next to the bed is ticking loudly and the sound of the ticking continues of the next few scenes, as indicated.

INT. KITCHEN

Ed pours a few more pills into his hand, swallowing them with some wine from the bottle.

INT. BATHROOM

Ed looks at the bathtub, which is full of the murky water. He picks up the plunger, which is still by the toilet, and starts working it on the drain.

More stuff is coming up, making the water darker, but as he relaxes the plunger, the water doesn't go down. If anything, the gurgling sound is louder.

He works the plunger some more, more vigorously and then, again, relaxes it and watches the drain hopefully. The gurgling noise seems closer and the water still does not go down.

Then he hears something hit the front door.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Ed opens the front door and picks up the newspaper which has just been thrown. He puts it with the other newspapers, which have piled up in their plastic wraps on his desk.

INT. BATHROOM

He comes back into the bathroom and looks at the bathtub.

He puts the plunger over the drain and works it much harder and, this time, after a few seconds, there is a loud knock in the pipes, as if he hit something. He takes the plunger away and watches the drain.

Suddenly, a large air bubble bursts out of the drain. He watches, but the water shows no sign of draining.

Then, slowly, blood starts to leak into the tub from the drain.

Ed is naturally terrified by this. He watches until it is clear that it is blood and not just more gook.

He puts plunger back on the drain and pumps it a few more frantic times. More blood seeps out of the drain. He seems to be making the problem worse.

He shuts the shower curtain and backs out of the bathroom.

INT. KITCHEN

He spills the pills on the kitchen counter and counts them quickly. There are about ten left. He pours them into his mouth and swallows the rest of the wine.

Then the ticking stops. Ed looks at a clock on the wall. The second hand has stopped.

He hears voices in the other room.

INT. EVE'S ROOM

He looks out of the window in Eve's room. He sees that the light in the neighbor's window is on. The couple next door are having another argument, but this one is much more intense than the last.

WOMAN

(O.S.) 2t2Why do you care! You don't care! You know nothing about me! I hate you! Stay away from me! I'll scream! I am not screaming now! You think you're the only one? Yes, I do! I LOVE YOU! You never do that! You do not! You never do anything! You think that nothing's wrong! You think we live in paradise! This is what I think of this fucking house!

There is the sound of things breaking.

WOMAN

(O.S.)

IT'S NOT MY FAULT! IT'S NOT MY FAULT! THEN DON'T! I AM NOT! I LOVE YOU! FUCK YOU! I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU SAID THAT! STAY AWAY FROM ME! YOU RUINED MY LIFE! STAY AWAY FROM ME! STOP IT! SHUT UP! STAY AWAY FROM ME! NO! STOP IT! YOU SON OF A BITCH! HELP! HELP!

This ends with a loud, terrifying shriek. It seems to echo around the room as Ed watches. Then the voices stop.

Ed watches the window and sees a featureless man stick his head through the curtains to see if anybody is listening. Then he closes the window and curtains.

The phone rings in the other room.

INT. KITCHEN

He hurries to answer the phone.

While he is on the phone, a new sound is coming from the bathroom. It is like the gurgling sound, but also subtly different.

ED

Hello.

DERM

Mr Saxon?

ED

Yes.

DERM

It's Detective Derm. I'm sorry to call you so late, but I thought you would want to hear this.

ED

Yes?

DERM

I'm afraid I have some bad news.

ED

What is it?

DERM

It's your wife. We've found her...

ED

You found her.

DERM

We found her body.

ED

Her...

DERM

Yes, sir. In the woods, near George Simian's house, where we found her car. I'm afraid she's dead.

Ed drops the phone. He walks trance-like into the hallway.

He follows the noise into the -

INT. BATHROOM

The noise coming from the bathroom now sounds more human, like a baby gurgling.

As Ed walks into the bathroom, he can see that there is something in the bathtub. The shower curtain is closed, but behind it, there is some sort of body moving. Ed pulls the curtain back. He reveals a baby, just born, lying in the tub. Most of the murky water has drained and left a dirty ring around the tub.

The BABY is a newborn, except that its eyes are maybe larger than they would be. The Baby is also SIX FEET TALL. It's immense frame fills the bathtub. It is naked (it's a boy).

Ed watches with amazement. The baby looks incredibly real, except for its size. The stare at each other for a minute. The baby looks a lot like George Simian. It has his eyes.

Other than this, it behaves like a baby. It is lying on its back, gurgling peacefully with his feet in the air and his left hand gripping the shower curtain.

The baby reaches out for Ed lovingly.

Ed backs away.

Seeing this, the baby starts crying.

Ed, panicking, approaches the baby. It is still crying. Ed reaches out to touch it. He touches its arm and the baby's crying starts to subside. The baby moves with typical, quick, chaotic movements that, because of the baby's size, are almost threatening.

Ed puts his hand in the baby's hand. The baby grips it as baby's do, but this baby's hand is about the size of Ed's. The baby stops crying and returns to its curious gurgling.

Ed tries to pull his hand back, but the baby won't let go. The baby, it seems, is incredibly strong. Ed pulls harder. He still can't get the baby to let go. Ed tries to pry the baby's fingers off, and this time manages to get his hand out of the baby's grip.

But as soon as he does, the baby starts crying again.

He backs out into the hallway.

INT. HALLWAY

Ed is in a panic. The baby's cries echo around him as he backs away from the bathroom.

INT. KITCHEN

Ed finds himself in the kitchen. He looks at his hands which are covered with bloody muck from the tub. He washes them off in the sink. He looks over at the kitchen knife which has been drying in the dish rack.

INT. HALLWAY

Ed walks slowly, purposefully to the bathroom. The crying baby gets louder as he approaches.

INT. BATHROOM

He comes into the bathroom, but in the tub, instead of the baby, there is a grown man's body. It is Ed, staring up at himself from under the water. We only see a very tight shot of BATHTUB ED's head and part of his neck. His head is under water and he looks up, unable to move.

We then see the reverse shot of this and it is also of Ed, so that Ed is, in effect, looking up at himself through the cloudy water.

The baby cries continue, although the baby is no longer in the scene.

From Bathtub Ed's point of view, we see the other Ed takes the kitchen knife and lean forward and to the right, off-camera.

Bathtub Ed, who can move his eyes, tries to look to his arm, where the other Ed is cutting. Soon, blood starts to mix with the water, diffusing over Bathtub Ed's face.

The blood also diffuses over Bathtub Ed's P.O.V., as he looks up at the other Ed cutting him. When the other Ed is finished cutting, Bathtub Ed sees him put the knife aside and then reach down, off-camera. After a short struggle, the other Ed pulls up Bathtub Ed's severed arm and slips it into a garbage bag he has already prepared.

The blood from Bathtub Ed's cut fills the water with dark blood, turning the film red.

The red dissolves into a pool of blood that is in the hallway.

INT. HALLWAY

Ed, with a bucket and sponge, is cleaning pockets of blood from the floor and walls. He is crying while he does this.

He squeezes the sponge for the last time, then inspects the hallway as closely as he can, searching for any spots he might have missed.

Then he picks up the bucket and takes it into the bathroom.

INT. BATHROOM

He dumps the water from the bucket into the bathtub. The water is pink and dirty. He sits down on the edge of the bathtub and watches the water go down the drain.

He stares at the drain in a trance until he hears a knock on the front door. He turns to listen to it in the other room.

INT. HALLWAY - DAY

As he opens the bathroom door, he sees that the sun is shining in from the living room.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Geoffrey stands patiently outside as Ed opens the door. He carries his briefcase and looks dressed for work. His appearance is a stark contrast to the half-dressed, blood-shot Ed.

GEOFFREY

Hi. I wanted to see how you were getting along.

ED

Getting along?

GEOFFREY

I have to say, you don't look well.

ED

I'm not well.

GEOFFREY

Have you slept?

ED

I don't know. Maybe. It's difficult to tell. I have these lapses, but I'd hardly call it sleep.

GEOFFREY

Did you take the pills?

ED

The pills are fucking useless.

GEOFFREY

But you took them?

ED

Yes.

GEOFFREY

I see. May I take your blood pressure?

ED

OK, fine.

Geoffrey comes in and places his briefcase on the table. He takes a stethoscope and the rest of his blood pressure kit and starts to take Ed's blood pressure.

ED

I feel like a lab rat. Like one of those lab rats they drug up and study. You know what I mean?

GEOFFREY

You feel like a rat.

ED

They put them in a maze and they give them shocks and drugs and they see what they do. They try to prod them in the direction they want them to go.

GEOFFREY

Try to relax.

ED

I feel like a rat who took all the turns, took all the drugs, went down the right path and then, when I got to the end, they shocked me anyway, right up the sphincter, like it was all just a big joke. I guess they thought I'd be too drugged up to notice.

GEOFFREY

It's been a few days, hasn't it, since your wife disappeared?

ED

Days? Yes. I guess.

GEOFFREY

Has there been any word from the police?

ED

Haven't you talked to them?

GEOFFREY

No. But if you'd like me to, I will, on your behalf. They know me and I've been through this before.

ED

With others?

GEOFFREY

With others, and myself. My wife was taken from me about three years ago.

ED

What happened?

GEOFFREY

It was a similar situation to yours. The police found her car in the parking lot of a mall. They found her body about a week later in some woods nearby.

ED

She was murdered.

GEOFFREY

Yes.

ED

Did they ever catch the man who did it?

GEOFFREY

No.

ED

Why would somebody do that?

GEOFFREY

Sometimes a man, when faced with his own problems or inadequacies, takes it out on someone weaker than themselves.

ED

I'm sorry.

GEOFFREY

Do you feel responsible at all for your wife's disappearance?

ED

Why?

GEOFFREY

People often blame themselves for events that they have no control over, especially when the events seem so random and cruel. Action leading up to tragedy tend to become more significant. Details weigh on the conscience.

ED

I do seem to be having problems with my conscience.

GEOFFREY

I see.

ED

Do you think that's why I can't sleep?

GEOFFREY

Could be.

ED

Is there anything you can give me?

GEOFFREY

A prescription? For your conscience? Of course not.

ED

Then what's the point?

GEOFFREY

There are other ways I can be of help.

ED

A shoulder to cry on?

GEOFFREY

Would you like me to call the police? There might be some news.

ED

The police called last night, late last night. They found Eve's body.

GEOFFREY

Oh, no.

ED

They found her buried in the woods, near where they found her car.

GEOFFREY

I'm sorry. I didn't know.

Geoffrey's watch alarm goes off. He looks at the time and then, habitually takes a shiny silver pillbox from his pocket. He takes two pills out.

GEOFFREY

Excuse me.

ED

I never knew I could feel so alone.

Geoffrey takes a thermos from his briefcase, pours some hot tea into the lid and swallows the pills with a mouthful of tea.

GEOFFREY

He hasn't called since last night?

ED

No.

GEOFFREY

It's been a while. Why don't you let me call him? Maybe there's some news.

When Ed doesn't object, Geoffrey takes his address book from his briefcase, along with a cellular phone and dials the number.

GEOFFREY

Detective Derm, please. Hi, Charlie, it's Geoffrey. I'm over at Ed Saxon's house. Yeah. He was hoping to get some information on his wife. Uh-huh. Well, he said you called him last night and told him that you had found her body. Uh-huh. I see. In the woods, near where you found her car. I don't know. Yes. Well, I did give him something to help him sleep. Right. Yes.

Then Geoffrey turns away from Ed and says a few words quietly, so that Ed can't hear. Then...

GEOFFREY

Yes. Yes. I'll tell him. Yes. OK. Bye.

Geoffrey hangs up and turns back to Ed.

ED

What?

GEOFFREY

He says he never called you last night.

ED

What?

GEOFFREY

He told me to tell you to wait here for him; that he's coming over.

ED

I don't understand.

GEOFFREY

It is possible that you did fall asleep, that you dreamed the phone call. I have to say that I was surprised when you said you hadn't slept. Those pills are very effective.

ED

The pills. Yes. Maybe.

GEOFFREY

Still, this is better, isn't it? I mean, now there's still a chance. Your wife could still be...There's still hope.

ED

Yes. Hope. But why is he coming over here?

GEOFFREY

He said he had some questions to ask you.

ED

What questions?

GEOFFREY

He didn't say.

ED

If he had some questions to ask me, he could have asked me on the phone.

GEOFFREY

Calm down, Mr Saxon.

ED

Why did you turn away from me when you were talking to him? What did you say?

GEOFFREY

I said you were very tired and anxious and that you seemed to be under a great deal of stress.

ED

You're lying.

GEOFFREY

I have no reason to lie.

ED

Don't you?

GEOFFREY

No. Why do you think I'm lying?

ED

Because you're scared.

Geoffrey does look scared. He has quickly packed up his briefcase.

GEOFFREY

Mr Saxon. Please. I understand you're under a lot of stress.

ED

You don't understand anything.

GEOFFREY

I came here to help you.

ED

Then help me. Please.

GEOFFREY

I've done all I can now. I'm sorry. I can't do any more.

ED

But, you'll come to see me again, won't you?

GEOFFREY

No. I don't think I will.

Geoffrey leaves. Ed shuts the door.

The phone rings.

Ed picks it up.

ED

Hello?

GEORGE

Is this Ed?

ED

George.

GEORGE

What did you do to Eve?

ED

I didn't do anything.

GEORGE

I know you did. I saw her before she left work. We met in the parking lot, like we always did. She told me she was leaving you. She was going to tell you when she got home.

ED

You don't know anything about it.

GEORGE

Yes, I do. I know you. Eve talks about you. She tell me things.

ED

What things?

GEORGE

I know about the fights you have.

ED

She's my wife. We fight sometimes.

GEORGE

That's bullshit. I know what kind of a son of bitch you can be. She's told me.

ED

What don't you tell it to the police?

GEORGE

I did.

ED

You think she was some sort of angel? She was cheating on me.

GEORGE

I love her. I loved her.

Ed listens to George break down.

ED

I'm sorry.

There is a long pause.

GEORGE

It's not enough.

George hangs up.

INT. BATHROOM

The bathroom is completely clean. There is no sign of any of the activity from before. Ed finds the bottle of prescription sleeping pills. It is empty. He takes a couple of Midol and swallows them dry.

INT. LIVING ROOM

Ed sits down at his desk. He looks over the papers on his desk. Sadie's is on top. He looks it over.

The phone rings and he picks it up.

ED

Hello?

SADIE

Hello.

ED

Sadie.

SADIE

I wanted to apologize.

ED

No. Don't apologize. It was me.

SADIE

I shouldn't have left like that. I don't know what came over me.

ED

It was understandable, under the circumstances.

SADIE

I really wanted you to like me.

ED

I wonder if you'll still feel the same way when you find out what kind of person I really am.

SADIE

I'll still keep your poem on my wall.

ED

Yes.

SADIE

I think it's a beautiful poem. I really do. Are you still there?

ED

Yes.

SADIE

I wish things had turned out better.

She hangs up. Ed stays on the phone, listening until the dial tone clicks back in.

Then Ed hears a car pull up outside. He follows some quiet footsteps as they walk up to the front door.

He sees the door knob turn quietly in the door. The door is locked.

Ed approaches the door slowly, but suddenly, there is a crash against it. Someone is trying to knock the door down.

The door is strong, and doesn't open, but the wall around it shakes.

After a few seconds, there is another crash against the door. This time the wall shakes so much that Eve's picture, which hangs by the door, almost falls off its nail.

Ed looks out of the window. The window is positioned facing the street, but not the porch, so he cannot see who it is, but he can see a car parked out front, with the door still open. Inside the car, there is a softball glove lying on the passenger seat, along with something that George Simian was wearing when we last saw him.

George crashes against the door again. This time Eve's picture falls off the wall. It hits the ground and smashes, spreading broken glass around her picture.

The door is starting to loosen around the lock and jamb.

INT. HALLWAY

Ed backs into the hallway. As he passes the bathroom, he can hear the gurgling sounds from the plumbing starting up again.

INT. KITCHEN

Ed backs into the kitchen. He searches around, quickly finding the kitchen knife. He grabs it out of the dish rack and starts walking toward the front door.

INT. HALLWAY

There's another bang on the door. Ed passes slowly through the hallway, watching the door, holding the knife in front of him.

The gurgling sounds in the bathroom are deep and resonant, echoing out of the drain, around the bathroom and into the hallway.

There is another hard crash against the door, which breaks the jamb. The door is only being held on by the splinters around the lock and George starts kicking the door with his foot.

Ed backs into the basement door. He opens it and goes into the-

INT. BASEMENT

He hurries down the stairs into the darkness of the basement. The pipes surround Ed with hysterical, thick, watery sounds. There are metallic creaks and strains which reverberate around the walls of the basement as the pipes seem to expand and contract.

A couple of inches of dark, dirty water have collected on the floor and Ed's feet get wet as he steps off the last stair.

Ed finds a place to hide in the shadows behind some boxes. He stares up, as he hears the door breaking open upstairs and someone walking into the living room.

With his eyes, he follows the footsteps as they search the apartment.

Ed has hidden under a large pipe, which is dripping drops of dirty water onto his face. In the darkness of the basement, the color of the water is unclear, but as he wipes some onto his fingers, he can see it is murky and dark.

The basement door opens slowly, and from the light upstairs, Ed can see the silhouette of George Simian standing with a softball bat.

Ed grips onto his knife and watches as George comes down the stairs, step by step. The water keeps dripping on the top of Ed's head, running down the side of his face, but he holds still.

Ed watches George come down the stairs.

George reaches the bottom and steps into the shallow water. He peers cautiously into the shadows. He starts walking toward Ed.

Ed withdraws as much as he can into his corner until he is in complete darkness.

He watches George approaching him and he slowly raises his knife.

George raises his softball bat. He takes a few more steps up to Ed, but then steps blindly past him and into a deep, dark shadow.

Ed watches him disappear into the shadow and then, makes his move. He rushes into the shadow with his knife raised and both he and George are engulfed in darkness.

After a few seconds, Ed emerges from the shadow. He drops the knife into the water at his feet. As he does, blood runs out of the shadow, mixing with the water in the basement floor.

Ed walks slowly upstairs. The noises around him in the basement are now at their loudest.

INT. BATHROOM

Ed takes a long look at himself in the mirror. He is wet with blood and dirt. He opens the medicine cabinet and finds the sleeping pills he was using before. He opens the bottle and empties it into his hand. There are only about five pills left.

He takes the two toothbrushes from a toothpaste-crusty glass and fills it with water. He takes the pills.

Unsatisfied, he searches through the rest of the medicine cabinet. The selection, though not particularly toxic, is a good representation of standard, over-the-counter pills and tonics. He finds the Midol and takes the last few from the bottle. There is a bottle of cold medicine which he finishes off. He drinks down a nearly full bottle of pink diarrhea medicine. He finds a bottle of multi-vitamins and takes a handful of those. As he finishes each one, he drops the empties onto the floor of the bathroom.

When he stops, he notices blood seeping out of the bathtub drain. It is pure, thick, dark blood. He backs away into the hallway.

INT. HALLWAY

Ed backs into the wall and then, losing strength in his legs, lowers himself to the floor. He keeps watching the bathtub.

Piano music starts to seep through the gurgling noises. Ed turns towards Eve's room.

On the other side of the house, outside the broken door, Ed can hear Derm's car pull up. Ed watches the living room as Derm comes in carefully, flanked by Mazurek and Snyder.

Derm comes over to Ed and kneels down in front of him. Ed looks up at him helplessly.

ED

It wasn't me.

Derm looks at Ed's hands, which are covered in blood.

ED

It wasn't me.

Ed watches Derm looking at him. Then he notices, behind Derm, blood seeping over the rim of the bathtub.

Ed turns to Eve's room, where the piano can still be heard.

The camera continues on where Ed can't go: down the hallway to Eve's room. As it approaches, all the other noises fade out and the piano is all that we hear.

Ed watches from his position in the hall so that it all seems like his point of view.

INT. EVE'S ROOM

The camera comes into Eve's room and turns to the piano.

EVE is sitting at the piano, playing some music. We watch her for a few seconds. She turns to the camera as she plays, then continues playing.

Then the camera turns toward the clouds painted on the ceiling. A crack appears in the plaster and starts widening until there is an empty black space behind it. The sound of the baby crying seeps in from the crack. The camera zeroes in on this black until it fills the frame. Over the blackness, we can hear the baby crying until it fades out.

THE END

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