FADE IN ON:
EXT. NORTH GEORGIA WOODS—BIRD’S EYE VIEW (HELICOPTER)—DAY
It’s late July.
The trees’ green and intermeshed canopies skim past below us, broken only by the occasional twisty lines of curving creeks or narrow back roads.
A large clearing comes into view:
A prison rec yard, the edges of which are bordered by a double row of tall chain-link fencing topped with whirls of razor-wire.
WE HEAR two small-caliber GUNSHOTS echo distantly.
WE DIVE fast toward the inner fence, swooping seamlessly into a “tunnel” of razor-wire coils.
At the precise moment we enter into—and begin traveling along—the razor-wire tunnel’s axial epicenter, WE HEAR a rumbling metallic HUM continuously, even as we—
EXT. CINCINNATI’S SUSPENSION BRIDGE—NIGHT—FLASHBACK
January of the previous year.
A beat up four-door sedan crosses over the Ohio River, north, into downtown Cincinnati.
The car’s side panel is filthy with the dried splatter of winter grime and rock-salt residue.
The metallic HUM is now more pronounced. WE SEE and understand that this hum is the sound of the car’s tires turning atop the bridge’s metal-grate driving surface.
INT. FOUR-DOOR SEDAN—NIGHT—CONTINUOUS
The metallic HUM is muffled in the car’s interior.
WE SEE the car’s occupants, three young men dressed in hooded jackets.
Cherokee drives. He is in the mid-20s, dark complected. His face shows a mixture of concern, angst, and adrenaline-fueled alertness.
Squirrel and Shytown ride in the backseat.
Squirrel—boyish, thin, pale, shaggy blond hair—looks peaceful as a Caravaggio angel. His eyes are closed, but when the car hits a bumpy, he grimaces.
Hey, Shytown—is he bleeding back there?
Damnit, Cherokee—he’s effin’ shot and you’re askin’ if he’s bleedin’. What the hell—
If he’s bleeding, he’s still alive-that’s what
He’s shot, that’s what, and bleedin’ like a bitch, that’s what.
Let me think
He’s gonna die back here.
Would you shut up? He can hear you, ya know.
He ain’t hearin’ nothin’. He’s gonna die if you don’t—
Shut up! Would. you just shut up and let me think—
EXT. —PRISON REC YARD—DAY—SUMMER—PRESENT DAY
WE CONTINUE along the razor-wire tunnel, lifting slightly as the razor-wire rises and falls.
The razor-wire tunnel turns sharply at one corner of the fence, as do we, and-
WE HEAR the SCREECH of tires, the sound of which seemingly throws us from the coils of razor-wire, into the prison rec yard.
WE MOVE across a sun-scorched softball field (game in progress).
WE CUT through a set of awning-covered basketball courts (pick-up games and practice drills in progress).
WE CURVE slightly and STOP at the handball courts, where a group of about 50 prisoners has gathered.
WE SEE the prisoners shout and cheer, but we do not hear them.
WE HEAR only the SOUNDS of a car being shifted into park, an engine idling, and car doors being opened but not closed.
EXT. HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ENTRANCE—NIGHT—FLASHBACK
The sedan is parked askew outside the ER’s entrance, engine running, exhaust billowing in the cold. There’s evidence of a recent, partially-cleared snowfall.
The car’s rear doors are open, as is the driver’s-side door.
Two EMTs stand near a parked ambulance. One smokes a cigarette. They watch with stunned interest as–
Cherokee and Shytown unload Squierrel from the sedan’s backseat and deposit him on the pavement.
(hurriedly, out of breath)
Are you doctors?
You can’t leave him there.
You’re doctors… you move him.
We’re not doctors.
Cherokee and Shytown waste no time. They slam shut the car’s rear doors, quickly get in the front seat, Cherokee still driving.
(screaming after them)
Hey! I said you can’t… hey!
Cherokee and Shytown speed off, burning rubber. They close the car’s front doors only after the car is in movement.
EMT #2 kneels next to Squierel. Gives Squirell a cursory once-over.
EMT #1 starts to run inside for a gurney but he hesitates.
EMT #1 rushes through the ER entrance’s automatic doors.
Hang in there, kid. Hang, in there.—
EXT. PRISON HANDBALL COURTS—DAY—PRESENT-DAY
CHEERING prisoners crowd around the innermost handball court. A fight is in progress. The prisoners make various gestures of delight aid dismay.
Some call Squirrel’s name.
Hang in there, kid! Hang in there—
(shaking his head)
He better lay it down.
Come on, Squirrel! Kick some ass—
WE SEE SQUIRREL clearly–shirtless and dressed in khaki prison-issued pants. He’s athletic but lightweight, his hair cropped short. Two bullet-wound scars are visible on his torso—one on his left shoulder, one on his lower right side.
The fight is mismatched. The other fighter, Tom-Tom, is more welterweight and experienced. Squierrel and Tom-Tom grapple Greco-Roman style, then separate.
(consulting his watch)
Ten more seconds! Ten… nine….
In unison, the CROWD MEMBERS join in the countdown:
Tom-Tom’s right hook catches Squirrel square on his left cheekbone. Squirrel sways but does not go down.
Six… five… four…
Tom-Tom lays two quick blows into Squirrel’s midsectiob. Squirrel looks dazed but still stands.
Three! Two! One!
Someone blows a referee WHISTLE. General anxiety in the crowd as the fight ends.
Squirrel and Tom-Tom stand at ease, arms at their sides.
Squirrel takes a series of side-steps to catch himself from falling.
Bubba–a solid-built, good-ol’-boy Texan steps forward to adoration and recognition from severl in the crowd who shout his name. with a wave of his hands, Bubba calms and quiets the crowd.
Bubba nods toward two transvestite inmates–Sunshine and Lolipop–both of whom smile in return. SUNSHINE waves sweetly to the crowd’s catcalls and whistles. Lollypop blows random kisses.
Bubba takes hold of a wrist of each fighter, which helps steady a still-swaying Squirrel.
An inmate performs a drumroll, bongo style, on the side of a nearby trashcan.
Today’s champion…in a split decision—
Split decision! Split decision, my ass!
(thrusting up Tom-Tom’s arm)
General confusion and grumblings. Betting tickets are torn and thrown into the air like confetti. The crowd thins, then clears.
Squirrel is lying on the painted-cement surface of the handball court, eyes closed, hands folded across his chest.
Bubba kneels next to Squirrel.
How ya doin’ Cellie?
I bet three books of stamps against myself.
Who was crazy enough to take that bet?
Like taking candy from a baby—
Bubba helps Squirrel to his feet. Squirrel sways.
We better get you to the Doc.
INT. DOC’S “OFFICE”—DAY
SQUIRREL’s POV: CLOSE ON DOC’s face, as he scrutinizes Squirrel injuries. Doc is an older man with thin white hair, a friendly continence, and a gentle, contemplative manner.
What d’ya think, doc?
Hmmm… softball, maybe.
Our view expands. Various types of sports equipment hang on walls of doc’s office: baseball bats, badminton rackets, racquetball rackets, Ping-Pong paddles, softball gloves, etc. Large nylon-net bags hold balls of various types and sizes.
WE SEE that Doc is dressed in prison khakis.
Squirrel reclines awkwardly in a molded-plastic chair, looking up at Doc. Bubba leans against the nearby doorframe.
That’s my professional opinion.., a softball.
Come on, doc … a softball?
Right field…pop fly…sun blinds him…ball comes down and smacks him in the eye.
What about his mouth?
I’m thinking when they see that eye, they’re not going to notice his mouth.
I dunno. . . it’s pretty swelled.
Ice’ll take down most of the swelling.
I think they’re gonna notice, doc.
(takes a racquetball racket down from the wall)
(holds the racket up to Squirrel’s facial injuries)
Yeah… see? The wounds line up…least close enough for government work.
You play racquetball?
(handing him the racket)
Congratulations. You do now.
INT. REC CENTER—EQUIPMENT CHECK-OUT DAY—CONTINUOUS
Squirrel and Bubba exit from the Equipment Check-Out Room.
Squirrel and Bubba stroll past pool tables, exercise equipment, an aerobics class (disco MUSIC playing). Squirrel carelessly twirls the racket.
Gimme that before you poke out your other eye.
Squirrel stops twirling the racket, but he does not hand it to Bubba.
I don’t get why we gotta report this.
Geez…don’t say that.
(looks around, lowers voice)
Only snitches report. We’re merely documenting your injuries.
I don’t see the difference.
Look, you wanna go to the hole for fightin’? If the wrong C.O. sees this and it ain’t docmented, there’ll be an investigation. That’s 30 days in the hole, at least. Maybe 60… 90. And if you come out sooner than that, people’ll think you snitched.
You want that on your jacket?
Squirrel and Bubba are standing outside a door with a frosted-glass window. The lettering on the glass reads:
B. WALTON, ASST. REC. DIR.
Let me do the talkin’.
Bubba knocks on the door.
(yells, from inside office)
INT. OFFICE OF THE ASSISTANT REC DIRECTOR—DAY
Walton is at his desk, feet up. He is watching a hockey game on a TV bracketed to the wall. The game BLARES, but WLTON does not lower the volume as-
Squirrel and Bubba enter.
On Walton’s desk, his computer sits idle, the BOP logo bouncing around on the screen.
(Above the din of the TV)
Mr. Walton–we gotta docment a sports-related injury.
Walton now eyes them with grudging acknowledgment. He lowers the TV volume with a remote. Takes his feet off the desk. Taps his keyboard, clearing the BOP screen-saver.
(eyes glued to the TV)
Ya see, Walton—it was a racquetball injury. Right to his face, the racket. He’s okay. We just need it documented.
(slowly, eyes on the TV)
One…five…two…dash…um, zero… two…dash…seven…seven…eight.
(confirming on-screen info)
(watching the hockey game)
Any relation to the president?
Clinton…racquetball injury…racket to the..
(looks at Squirrel)
(looks again, resumes typing)
left side of face…medical…. declined.
(turning tram the TV)
This is July—
That’s right, Squirrel—July. See? I told you he didn’t need any medical
Why’s there hockey on TV… in July?
Walton, Bubba, and Squirrel turn their attention toward the television. We see that a baseball game is playing.
(turning up the volume)
Maybe you oughtta stop by Medical, son.
EXT. REC CENTER—ENTRANCE/EXIT DOORS—DAY—CONTINUOUS
Outside the Rec Center, BOGGS sits cross-legged on a mat, eyes closed, sunning himself in meditation. On his head he wears a pyramid-shaped, foil-covered hat.
Bubba and Squirrel exit through the doors of the Rec Center.
Boggs! Boggs! I don’t think any of this is real!
Well…. that’s the first sensible thing you’ve slid since you got here.
Bubba takes Squirrel by the arm, pulls him along.
INT. Bubba, Squirrel, AND GREG’S CELL—NIGHT
Their cell is neat, orderly, and very small. It’s after “lights out,” so the room is dimly lit, a mishmash of soft shadow and filtered illumination.
Bubba, on the narrow side bed (a single), appears to read from a dog-eared copy of Tolstoy’s War and Peace, with the aid of a battery-operated reading light. He writes within the book’s pages with a ballpoint pen.
Closer inspection reveals:
Bubba is using War and Peace to prop up a Sudoku puzzle, the difficulty level of which is Extremely Hard. He fills in the empty squares (correctly), row by row, as fast as his pen can glide across the page.
Squirrel is sitting on the upper bunk of the other bed, his legs dangling off the edge.
Greg is lying on the lower bunk, covered up to his chin with blankets. Young and skinny, with long bed-disheveled hair and a bushy beard, Greg resembles a Rasputin-inspired hermit.
Bubba, do you ever think about where we are?
We’re in prison, squirrel.
Yeah… I mean, what exactly is prison?
Different things for different people.
Yeah… kinda like hell—right?
Hell is hell… burning sulfer, devils with pitchforks, eternal damnation.
I once saw that show Twilight Zone, where hell was different for everyone, one man’s hell was another man’s heaven.
This sure as hell ain’t heaven.
And it sure as heaven ain’t hell.
I guess. But… how do we know?
This is prison, Squirrel.
But. .. what is prison?
What does your dictionary say?
I don’t know. I lent it to Cee-Jay.
Cee-Jay can read?
He got his GED.
He can’t even spell GED. How’d he get his GED?
(yelling toward the vent)
(through the vent)
What’s the definition of prison?
(through the vent)
Hell, I dunno—
You got Squirrel’s dictionary, don’t ya?
Oh… okay… yeah… hold on—
Be right with ya—
INT. CEE-JAY AND BOGGS’S CELL—NIGHT—CONTINUOUS
A mirror image of the previous cell.
Cee-Jay, about the same age as Squirrel but heavier, jumps off his upper bunk and retrieves the dictionary from a top his locker.
The lower bunk is empty, the mattress rolled up.
Boggs is on the side bed, trying desperatly to sleep.
Okay…how’d you spell that?
INT. BUBBA, Squirrel, AND GREG’S CELL—NIGHT—CONTINUOUS
(into the vent)
(through the vent, slowly)
A three-sided…transparent object… that…that refracts light…so that it breaks the light up into rainbow colors.
well—there you have it.
(yelling into the vent)
Dammit, Cee-Jay—that’s prism, not prison.
INT. CEE-JAY AND BOGG’S CELL—NIGHT—CONTINUOUS
Cee-Jay scratches his head, scrutinizes the page more closely. In the side bed, BOGGS turns restlessly.
INT. BUBBA, SQUIRREL, AND GREG’S CELL—NIGHT—CONTINUOUS
(through the vent)
Okay.. . hold on…
P… R… I…
(into the vent)
S… 0… N… P-R-I-S-O-N-
Okay…a place of confinement…especially for criminals.
But… it still doesn’t answer my question.
What if we’re all dead and this is the afterlife?
Then none of this is real.
But… this is real. Heaven and hell are real, ain’t they? What if this is hell?
Like I said…this sure ain’t heaven—and if it was hell, I think it’d be a hell of a lot hotter.
What if this is purgatory?
Purgatory? I’m Southern Baptist. What the hell is purgatory?
(through the vent)
An intermediary state after death for expiatory purification, a condition or place of temporary punishment.
Now shut the hell up! I’ve got a five A.M. work call.
Thank you, Boggs.
(through the vent)
Goodnight Bubba. Goodnight Squirrel.
Goodnight Cee-Jay. Goodnight Boggs.
(through the vent)
Goodnight John-Boy, goodnight Mary Ellen, goodnight Jim-Bob, goodnight Grandma and Grandpa, Ma and Pa, and anyone else that’s out there! Now shut the hell up!
(into the vent)
(after a beat)
Squirrel lies down. Rises up on one elbow. Looks down at Greg in the lower bunk.
Greg stares wild-eyed into the near darkness.
I lie in my bunk after lights out and stare at the ceiling. By my carefully concentrating on certain ceiling tiles and mentally blocking out others, I can cause the Cross of Jesus to appear above me, suspended watchfully over our beds. Help me, Jesus, my mind cries out. The ceiling remains silent, the tiles immobile. Still I wait patiently for Jesus to come to my rescue.
(lying down, closing his eyes)
Bubba turns off his reading light. The scene goes dark.
INT. PRISON LIBRARY—CHECK-OUT COUNTER—DAY
Squirrel walks up to the counter, stands, waits patiently for the Clerk to look up.
The Clerk takes his time. Slowly he puts down the book he’s reading and reluctantly turns his attention to Squirrel.
I’m looking for a book—
Ummm… I guess the topic of reality and purgatory.
That’s two topics.
The, topic of reality—what is reality, for example—is typically found in the Philosophy section…a book on purgatory in the Religion section.
Where are the Philosophy and Religion, sections?
They aren’t. The prison library has neither section.
EXT. PRISON REC YARD—WEIGHT PILE—DAY
Squirrel helps to spot Player Pete—Chicano, muscular, extensively tattooed—while Pete bench-presses.
Player Pete strains against the weight. Squirrel helps guide the barbell back into its holder.
Player Pete, I got a question.
What’s that, Young Blood?
What is reality?
Reality… reality.., okay, check this. See those two he-shes by the volleyball court?
Near the volleyball court, WE SEE Sunshine and Lollypop who are having a heated discussion.
Sunshine and Lollypop. Now, biologically speakin’, they’re as male as me and you—meanin’ they got the same basic plumbin’ package… the pipes and drainage, if you catch my drift.
I guess so—
You’re gonna have to trust me on this.
But some of the dudes here—myself not one of ‘em—don’t see it that way.
In the background, Sunshine and Lollypop’s argument escalates.
To some of the guys, Sunshine and Lollypop are, for want of a better word, women. Women! You ever see a woman that looks like that?
I guess not.
Hell no! But some dudes see them that way, if you catch my drift. And they treat them that way—ya know what I mean?
How ya mean?
Don’t ask, don’t tell. And the guys that lay up with Sunshine… or Lollypop… or both—they see themself as straight… you know, heterosexual. Just regular guys hookin’ up with a couple of regular chicas. Me—I call that denial. But that’s their reality.
In the background, Lollypop slaps Sunshine and storms off.
As for me and mine—I lift weights.
EXT. PRISON BASKETBALL COURTS—COVERED SECTION—DAY (LATER)
Greg sits in the metal bleachers, under the awning-covered section of the basketball courts. He stares blankly at—
Sunshine, who is pacing and panic-stricken, looking up at –
Lollypop, who has somehow managed to climb into the upper rafters of the awning, about 30 feet above the courts concrete surface. A bedsheet is tightened around his neck.
Lollypop! You come down here this second!
The bedsheet billows like a cape behind Lollypop.
Please, Lollypop…I’m begging you—listen to me. He’s not worth all this drama, Girlfriend.
EXT. HILLTOP CLEARING—DAY—CONTINUOUS (GREG’S POV)
Greg sits cross-legged in the green grass. Behind him, rolling hills dotted with lush trees stretch out into the horizon and meet with clear azure sky. Greg watches—
Sunshine, who wears a faithful re-creation of the dress that Julie Andrews wore when she sang “The Hills Are Alive” in The Sound of Music. Sunshine runs barefoot across the hilltop clearing, looking up, one hand shading his eyes. He still calls out to—
Lollypop but his tone is now more playful, almost joyful.
Lollypop… Girlfriend…now what do you think you’re doing?
Held aloft by immense angelic wings, Lollypop soars overhead, dressed in a flowing pink gown.
Ooo-weee, look at me–I’m an angel!
You sure are, Girlfriend., you sure are…the most beautiful angel who ever swooped down from heaven.
Look at me, everyone…I’m flyin’ high as the sky.
You go, Miss Thing!
Sunshine stops running and stands looking up, admiring Lollypop, and smiling broadly.
Lollypop hovers motionless against the blue sky, wings outstretched, body perpendicular to the ground, toes pointed.
The beauty and calm at this tableau are abruptly shattered, by Sunshine’s blood-curdling scream.
EXT. PRISON BASKETBALL COURTS—COVERED SECTION—DAY
Lollypop hangs from the upper tatters of the awning.
Sunshine screams and sobs continuously.
Greg stares distantly, a slight, benevolent smile on his lips.
EXT. MAIN PRISON COMPOUD—DAY (LATER)
The yard is bustling with activity as hundreds at prisoners hurriedly walk back to their housing units.
An announcement is being repeated Over the P.A. system:
The yard is closed. All inmates must report back to their assigned housing units immediately. Clear the yard…
EXT. MAIN PRISON COMPOUND—DAY (LATER)
The last moments of daylight. The compound is strangely quiet, deserted.
Squirrel watches from the windows of his housing unit’s main entrance. Squirrel and WE SEE:
A lone figure on the yard: an Orderly pushing a sheet-covered body on a gurney. The gurney hits a bump on the sidewalk. An arm pops out from beneath the sheet.
The Orderly stops, replaces the arm under the sheet. He resumes movement.
Another bump. This time a large angelic wing falls out from beneath the sheet.
The Orderly again stops. Slowly, methodically, he repositions the angel’s wing, covers it securely with the sheet. The Orderly resumes his movement with the gurney.
INT. SQUIRREL’S HOUSING UNIT—MAIN ENTRANCE—EVENING—CONTINUOUS
Squirrel turns from the windows, to a nearby bank of phones along one wall. He picks up a phone, dials, waits.
SQUIRREL’S MOM (V.O.)
Junior? Can you hear me?
I hear you fine, Mom.
(turning for privacy)
Don’t call me Junior.
SQUIRREL’S MOM (V.O)
I know you hate it when I call you that. I’m sorry Squirrel.
SQUIRREL’S MOM (V.O.)
I love you so much.
I know. I love you, too, Mom.
SQUIRREL’S MOM (V.O.)
I am proud of you.
Why’re you proud of me?
SQUIRREL’ S MOM (V.O.)
You’re stronger than you think.
INT. HOSPITAL ROOM—ICU EVENING—CONTINUOUS
Squirrel sits vigil next to Squirrel’s bed. Squirrel lies unconscious, attached to tubes and wires, his wounds dressed.
You’ve survived being shot. Three bullets.
Only two bullets, Mom.
In addition to the two bullet wounds on his torso, WE SEE that Squirrel’s head is also bandaged.
Squirrel’s Mom reaches out, takes her son’s hand.
The doctors say it’s a miracle you’re still with us.
Mom, I don’ t think any of this is real.
Listen to me, Squirrel–can you hear my voice?
INT. SQUIRREL’S HOUSING UNIT.—PHONES.—EVENING.—CONTINUOUS
SQUIRREL’S MOM (V.O.)
I know you can hear me, Son.
I can hear you fine, Mom.
SQUIRREL’S MOM (V.O.)
I need for you to fight this.
SQUIRREL’S MOM (V.O.)
I need you to come back to us.
I want to, mom. I…
(fighting back tears)
It’s just that I don’t know how.
INT. HOSPITAL ROOM—ICU—EVENING—CONTINUOUS
Just follow the sound of my voice. Squirrel … please come back to us.
INT. SQUIRREL’S HOUSING UNIT—PHONES—EVENING—CONTINUOUS
In the background, a doorway behind Squirrel begins to brighten with ethereal luminosity.
I want to, mom.
SQUIRREL’S MOM (V.O.)
Just, follow the sound of my voice. You think you can do that?
The doorway behind Squirrel has now fully brightened into a passageway of pure white light. The effect is nearly blinding.
Squirrel notices the passageway
I think so.
I think I know what you mean.
Squirrel walks, toward, and into, this passageway, of light. The light surrounds him, consumes him. Squirrel disappears, the light fading with him, revealing a mere connecting hallway between adjacent housing units.
A door opens at the other end of the hallway.
Greg appears. He turns, carefully closes the door behind him. He pauses, unsure, as if getting his bearings. Then Greg shuffles toward us and past us, continuing toward his cell.
INT: BUBBA, SQUIRREL, AND GREG’S CELL: NIGHT:
Greg sits alone in the cell, on his lower bunk. He stares blankly at the wall across from him.
(softly, at first)
I saw something I wasn’t supposed to see… just a glimpse, really… but I wasn’t supposed to see it.
I saw a glimpse of the real world.
INT. INSTITUTIONAL CORRIDOR—DAY—
Under bland fluorescent lighting, a NURSE in a crisp white uniform wheels something along a stark gray corridor WE SEE only her upper torso, so we cannot tell whether she is pushing a wheelchair, a cart, or a gurney.
They move me sometimes. They’ve been moving me more lately. I’m not supposed to know when they move me… but I sometimes awaken and see things I’m not supposed to see.
The Nurse turns a corner and disappears through a set of solid double doors. The sign above the doors reads:
152nd Floor Skywalk
AUTHORIZED PERSONNEL ONLY
INT: 152ND FLOOR SKYWALK: DAY: CONTINUOUS:
The Nurse continues her trek. WE SEE her from behind, and WE SEE she is pushing a gurney. We cannot quite see what is on the gurney.
I awakened from the dream they give me. I could sense the table, the movement of the wheels, And I opened my eyes, which
is something I’m not supposed to do.
But my eyes were opened.
Greg’s POV Through the floor-to-ceiling windows of the glass-and-steel skywalk, Greg and WE SEE a broad and expansive view of a large metropolitan city. Futuristic skyscrapers sparkle like jewels under blue sky and bright sun.
This cityscape stretches off in all directions and to the horizon and beyond.
I saw it…just a glimpse…but I sensed all the people who live there…going about their lives…freely experiencing the world.
Greg’s monologue overlaps the following scenes:
INT. SUBWAY STATION—DAY
A subway train comes to a stop alongside a crowded platform. The doors of its cars open. Dozens of passengers exit while dozens more enter—a well-practiced changing of the guard.
EXT. METROPOLITAN ZOO—DAY
Children in matching school uniforms, their faces animated with glee, point excitedly at climbing orangutans. A nearby peacock displays a fan of iridescent tail feathers.
EXT. MIDTOWN CATHEDRAL—DAY
Amid a flurry of doves, a newly married couple descends the cathedral steps. The bride pauses, tosses her bouquet An elderly man catches it. The many wedding guests applaud.
EXT. CITY PARK—DAY
An elderly woman sits alone on a park bench. A man and woman with a small child walk past. The child runs back to the sitting woman and presents her with a fresh-picked flower.
EXT. DOWNTOWN ALLEYWAY—DAY
A homeless man sleeps in a trash-strewn alleyway. A passerby bends down and covers the man with a brightly colored quilt. The good samaritan places a bag lunch near the man’s hands.
INT. SUBWAY STATION—NIGHT
A subway train comes to a stop alongside a vacant platform. Its doors open. A young lady exits She looks around, sees the platform is empty. She quickly gets back on the train. The doors close. The train resumes movement.
The world I’m not supposed to be a part of, the world they don’t want me in.
INT. 152ND FLOOR SKYWALK—DAY
Again we see Greg’s POV of the broad cityscape.
Our view is abruptly blocked by the Nurse’s moon of a face. She scowls, aghast to discover what Greg might be seeing. Slowly the scene darkens, changes.
INT. BUBBA, SQUIRREL, AND GREG’S CELL—NIGHT
WE SEE the white cinder-block wall across from Greg, the same wall he stares at. Our view pans around the room to Greg.
INT. STORAGE ROOM #152-B—DAY
The Nurse maneuvers the gurney parallel to a wall of 3’ by 3’ cubbyholes. Using a hydrolic device, the Nurse transfers her cargo into an empty cubbyhole. Now WE SEE what she has been transporting:
A large bell jar containing a human brain floating in clear liquid. The brainstem and part of the spinal cord are intact. The optic nerves extend forward; the eyeballs are fully intact, as are their upper and lower lids, closed in slumber. Remnant skin surrounds the eyelids and radiates outward in jagged strips, which undulate freely in the liquid.
Dozens of wires protrude from the brain’s many creases and folds, extending downward, disappearing into the heavy base of the containment unit. On the base’s frontpiece are several dials, an alpha-numeric keypad, and an LED screen displaying a thinly luminous line. This line oscillates in syllabic synchronization with:
That was the world I’m not supposed to know about…the world they don’t want me to know about.
The Nurse places a label on the bell jar’s front. It reads:
GREGORY S. CLINTON, JR.
Our view moves upward to the brain’s eyes, which pop open.
INT. BUBBA, Squirrel, AND GREG’S CELL—NIGHT
Squirrel now sits in Greg’s place. A tear cascades down one cheek.
I saw the real world, just a glimpse. It was…