"In writing fiction, the more fantastic the tale, the plainer the prose should be. Don't ask your readers to admire your words when you want them to believe your story." - Ben Bova [ more quotes ]

"WHAT LIES BENEATH"

by

Clark Gregg

June 14, 1999



FADE IN:

Moving through a murky haze. Dark blues and greens, shafts
of prismed purple. A pale shard appears in the distance.

Gliding closer, a group of tiny fish dart before the camera.

We're UNDERWATER. Arriving at the form, it finally sharpens
into focus. It's a WOMAN'S BODY submerged in dark water,
arms floating lazily at her side. The face is obscured by
flowing hair. All that is visible is a pair of COLD, STARING
GREEN EYES, which blink closed...

MORPH TO:

...then open as BLUE EYES, as a DIFFERENT FACE emerges from
water. CLAIRE SPENCER awakens from this unsettling dream in
her bathtub. She pivots the large BRASS SHOWER HEAD (the
kind that moves up and down on a pipe) off to one side,
reaches toward her feet and we hear the sound of a plug being
pulled.

INT. BATHROOM - DAY

A HAZY SHAPE -- accompanied by a whirring sound.

A steam covered mirror is cleared with a BLOW DRYER. Claire
starts to come into focus. The dryer stops. She presses the
red G.F.I. button on the socket. ZAP! A big blue spark shoots
out. Claire pulls her hand back... and the dryer starts
whirring again.

She clears the mirror and replaces the dryer on a hook. She
regards herself in the mirror, and attractive, elegant-looking
woman around forty.

Claire traces a finger along a small but noticeable SCAR
above her left eye, then slowly drops the hand to her cheek,
as if confirming her existence.

INT. CLAIRE'S HOUSE - DAY

Claire, now dressed, presses her face against a door,
listening for the sounds of stirring from within. Silence.

She quietly pushes open the door.

INT. ROOM - DAY

Claire makes her way past half-filled boxes and duffels to a
window, then pulls the curtains to reveal:

A LOVELY, WOODED LAKE. It couldn't be more picturesque. A
24' SAILBOAT is moored at the dock and an OLD STONE LIGHTHOUSE
sits on a point across the lake.

The sunlight motivates an unconscious groan from A FIGURE
still shrouded by covers.

Claire sits beside the sleeping form. She scans the room
briefly, taking in a Greenpeace flag and a picture of a
tomboyish ten year-old girl at camp.

She gently pulls back the covers and peers down at the same
face, now a waifish, pretty seventeen year-old, with chopped
hair and tiny nose ring. Claire leans over and inhales the
sleeping scent of her only daughter, CAITLIN. She places her
hand on a cheek. The girl's eyelids flutter softly.

CLAIRE
Morning, beauty.

Caitlin lets out a grunt and rolls over onto her belly.

CLAIRE
Let's go. Or we'll never leave on
time.

From out of the pillow comes Caitlin's voice.

CAITLIN
(muffled)
I'm totally ready.

Claire glances around at the piles of unpacked clothes.

CLAIRE
Come on, I'll make you some waffles,
maybe we'll squeeze in a trip to the
mall.
(beat)
Caitlin...

Claire gently swats at the tiny lump that is Caitlin's behind.

CAITLIN
Mother...

Claire stands and instinctively scoops up some clothes from
the floor, then folds and neatly stacks them on a box.

Caitlin turns her head sideways on the pillow.

CAITLIN
You're such a morning person.

Claire turns at the door.

CLAIRE
It is unwise to heckle the keeper of
the plastic.

She starts to leave. Caitlin calls out.

CAITLIN (O.S.)
Blueberries!

Claire smiles as she closes the door behind her.

INT. HALLWAY - DAY

Claire bends down to pick up one of Caitlin's socks. When
she stands, something catches her eye out a window. She gazes
down, transfixed.

ANGLE

Through a stand of trees over a HIGH WOODEN FENCE, A YOUNG
COUPLE is in the midst of a heated argument next door. Claire
watches as the HUSBAND, a large imposing man with an unruly
shock of red hair, snarls at his wife across the hood of
their huge old Buick. She tries to get a glimpse of the woman,
but all that's visible is THE BACK OF HER BLOND HEAD.

A TAN, SINEWY ARM encircles Claire's waist. She lets out a
small gasp as a hand closes on her breast. It's Claire's
husband, DR. NORMAN SPENCER, nibbling gently at her neck.

He's older than she, pushing fifty, with silver streaks
beginning to permeate the shaggy mop of hair that makes him
look more like a preppy rocker or a lacrosse coach than the
prominent academic that he is. Claire, however, can't take
her eyes off the scene below.

NORMAN
They at it again?

Claire nods.

NORMAN
Christ, that's twice in... When did
they move in?

CLAIRE
I think three...

NORMAN
Three weeks.

She continues to gaze downward. The man leans over the hood,
murmuring darkly at his wife, though for Claire and Norman
the scene is entirely silent.

CLAIRE
What's their name?

NORMAN
Feur, I think. Psych department.
Figures. They're all psychotic.

Outside, Mr. Feur turns and walks toward his house. Norman
begins, once again, to nuzzle Claire. Her eyes close, but
then she gently demurs.

CLAIRE
She's awake.

NORMAN
We'll be quiet. Quick and quiet.

She turns to him.

CLAIRE
I don't want to be either.

He smiles. A really good smile. The lips and tongue on his
faded T-shirt mark him as a 'Stones fan.

NORMAN
When's she out of here?

CLAIRE
Norman Spencer.

Norman gives up. He busses her cheek.

NORMAN
(moving toward the
stairs)
Alright. I can't take the rejection.
I'm going to class.

CLAIRE
Don't.

NORMAN
Claire, I have to show up for the --

CLAIRE
It's Saturday.

Norman stops.

NORMAN
I knew that. You think I didn't know
that?

She smiles at him. After a beat:

NORMAN
It's today?

CLAIRE
(wistfully)
Yep.

They share a warm, poignant look. He turns and moves down
the stairs.

NORMAN
(calling over his
shoulder)
We're going to have to leave by three
if we want to beat the traffic.

Claire returns her gaze to the scene below as Mr. Feur says
something ominous to his wife, then stalks into the house.

NORMAN (O.S.)
Claire?

CLAIRE
(absently)
Three o'clock.

ANGLE

Mrs. Feur drops her face into her hands.

EXT. SIDEWALK CAFE - DAY

Claire peruses her "to do" list as Caitlin munches a panini.

CLAIRE
...and I still think we should get
you some mittens.

Caitlin puts down the sandwich and regards her mother warmly.

The bond between them is palpable.

CLAIRE
Do you have a scarf?

CAITLIN
Hey.

Claire looks up from her little pad of paper.

CLAIRE
Yes?

CAITLIN
It's only two hours away.

CLAIRE
I know that.

CAITLIN
I'll come back all the time.

CLAIRE
Of course you will.

CAITLIN
I'm just saying, you're going to be
fine.

Claire smiles.

CLAIRE
Sweetheart, I've known this day was
coming for a long time. I've got
your father and the garden and the
new house. You really don't have to
worry.

Caitlin smiles back and nods, her face betraying some concern.
Claire takes her hand.

CLAIRE
Really.

She nods reassuringly and pulls Caitlin into an embrace. Her
eyes close.

CAITLIN (V.O.)
Mother...

EXT. COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY - DAY

Claire's frozen in the hug.

CAITLIN
(beat)
Mom.

Her eyes open. Widen to reveal Claire, holding Caitlin on
the college campus. The URBAN SKYLINE looms in the background.

CAITLIN
I have'ta go.

After a moment's hesitation, she releases her grip. Caitlin
glances over her shoulder to make sure no one's witnessed
this overt display of maternal affection.

CAITLIN
I'll call you.

Claire produces an ENVELOPE, which she presses into her
daughter's hand. It's a book of TRAIN TICKETS.

CLAIRE
Come home anytime.

Caitlin looks at Norman.

NORMAN
Really gonna leave me, huh?

She nods. They share a tender look.

NORMAN
Be good.

She throws her arm, briefly, tightly around his waist. A bit
overwhelmed, he slowly brings his hand to the back of
Caitlin's head. After a moment, she steps back...

CAITLIN
Bye.

...then turns and makes her way toward the large, old Columbia
dorm. A banner is draped across its portals which reads:

"WELCOME CLASS OF '04."

Claire watches her daughter melt into a crowd of similarly
shaggy freshmen, smoking and talking on the front steps. Her
eyes are shining. Norman wraps an arm around her waist as
she daps at a tear with a Kleenex.

CLAIRE
(smiling)
I almost made it.

They turn and head for the car. Claire sneaks one last look
over her shoulder.

ANGLE

Caitlin glancing back at Claire with an apprehensive smile.

INT. NORMAN AND CLAIRE'S ROOM - NIGHT

Claire walks in from the bathroom wearing a sexy cotton
nightgown. Norman is in bed, absorbed in some notes. She
gets into bed, then picks up a thick text from beside him
and starts reading. After a moment:

NORMAN
Whatcha reading?

CLAIRE
(reading the cover,
sexy voice)
Genetic repair mechanisms in
eukaryotic organisms.

NORMAN
(slight smile)
How is it?

Claire snuggles up.

CLAIRE
Excellent. Couple of Swedish sailor
cells just gang divided a virginal
cheerleader cell.

NORMAN
(lost in his book)
Nice.
(beat)
Almost done.

She pulls slightly away.

CLAIRE
If you have to work...

NORMAN
No, no. I'm just about...
(beat)
There.

He places his book on the bedside table and turns to her.

NORMAN
How are you?

CLAIRE
Fine.

NORMAN
It's okay if you're not.

CLAIRE
I am, really.

NORMAN
It's just she's been the focus for a
while.

CLAIRE
Not the focus.

NORMAN
You know what I mean.

Claire thinks for a moment.

CLAIRE
To tell you the truth... I'm excited.

NORMAN
You are...

CLAIRE
To get my life back. To have some
time for myself. Some time for us.

He caresses her.

NORMAN
You did a great job. She's a good
kid.

CLAIRE
We did.

There's a weighty pause.

NORMAN
It's just us now.

CLAIRE
I know.

He kisses her.

NORMAN
Tired?

CLAIRE
Nope.

NORMAN
Wanna fool around?

CLAIRE
Yup.

They start to kiss. It's slow and a bit methodical in the
manner of long time lovers. Suddenly, the SOUND OF A WOMAN
WAILING can be heard. They stop.

NORMAN
Did you...

CLAIRE
Shhh.

They listen. The sounds start to become louder. It is clearly
two people in the throes of some very vocal and savage love
making.

NORMAN
Jesus.

He walks over and closes the window. It doesn't help.

NORMAN
I guess they're making up.

The woman's moaning becomes embarrassingly loud.

CLAIRE
What is he doing to her?

They lie together in silence as the cacophony drones on.

NORMAN
And we moved out here for the quiet.

CLAIRE
Mmm.

Beat. The mood has passed.

NORMAN
Maybe we should just...

CLAIRE
Tomorrow.

NORMAN
I'm finished at three. No. Squash
with Stan.

CLAIRE
After that.

NORMAN
I'll be there.

Beat.

NORMAN
Love you.

She smiles.

CLAIRE
Night.

They lie together in the darkness as the Feurs finally climax.

INT. CAITLIN'S ROOM - DAY

Claire pushes open the door to Caitlin's room carrying an
armful of FOLDED LAUNDRY. She moves quickly to the bureau,
not wanting to spend much time in here, then grabs a TINY
BLACK TOP from the pile, and drops it into a drawer. She's
just about to close it, when something catches her eye.

CLAIRE'S POV

She drops the laundry and slowly pulls a tattered, old
JUILLIARD T-SHIRT with a very seventies logo from the drawer.

Claire gazes around the room, which is a reliquary of
Caitlin's recently concluded childhood; PICTURES, TROPHIES,
STUFFED ANIMALS.

She brings the now faded T-shirt to her face and drinks in
the smells. She stares down at the word "Juilliard."

MATCH CUT TO:

INT. BASEMENT - DAY

"JUILLIARD"... now it's on the same T-shirt only Claire's
wearing it and she's much younger. It's an old photograph in
an album. Younger Norman stands next to her in the shot, his
arm draped around her waist. A CELLO CASE stands beside her.

Claire glances around at several hastily unpacked boxes and
sees propped in the corner... THE CELLO CASE. She gazes at
other photos.

-- Claire in her wedding dress, Norman beside her in a tux
with a very wide bow-tie.

-- Claire and Norman in front of a UNIVERSITY BUILDING. A
tiny Caitlin rests on her hip.

Claire's chin begins to tremble and she chokes out a sob.

EXT. FRONT YARD - DAY

Her face streaked with tears, Claire stumbles out into the
immaculately manicured ROSE GARDEN.

The yard is surrounded by a HIGH WOODEN FENCE. She collapses
into a lawn chair as the tears begin to subside. Suddenly,
she hears something coming from next door.

She cocks her head and attempts to make out the sound. It
is, ironically, the sound of a WOMAN CRYING. Claire makes
her way over to the fence. The women's sobbing becomes more
plaintive and fevered.

She places her face against the prickly, vine covered fence
and tries to peer through the crack. All she can make out is
A DARK BLUE BLUR that seems to be rocking. Claire gathers
her nerve and calls out...

CLAIRE
Hello...

There's no reaction.

CLAIRE
Mrs. Feur?

The sobbing chokes down to a breathless whimpering. The blue
shape vanishes from view.

CLAIRE
Wait a minute. I just want --

Something bumps against the fence. Claire draws back. She
hears heavy breathing.

MRS. FEUR
(sniffling)
Who are you?

CLAIRE
It's Mrs... It's Claire... Spencer.
From next door. Is everything --

MRS. FEUR
You're the flower lady.

CLAIRE
Um... yes.

MRS. FEUR
I've seen you. From the window.

CLAIRE
Is everything alright?

Claire leans closer to the tiny crack. She sees a fleshy
blur and what might be part of an eye. There's no response,
just the breathing.

CLAIRE
Hello?

MRS. FEUR
I'm not...

She seems on the verge of losing it again.

MRS. FEUR
He's so... it's too much... and I
can't... I can't breath...

CLAIRE
Who? Your husband?

MRS. FEUR
And I'm afraid. Oh god, I'm so afraid
of...

She trails off.

CLAIRE
What? What are you afraid of?

MRS. FEUR
I can't, no, no, I can't...

Claire edges closer to the crack.

CLAIRE
Tell me. Please.

MRS. FEUR
That I'll just... that one day I'll
just... disappear.

Beat. Claire's taken aback by this admission.

CLAIRE
Tell me. I can help you.

MRS. FEUR
How? How can you help me? With your
flowers and your perfect life...

CLAIRE
That's not... It's not like that.

MRS. FEUR
I've never even met you.

CLAIRE
I know. And I'm sorry. I've been
consumed with... my daughter left...
for school.

MRS. FEUR
This fence... it's so...

CLAIRE
I'm sorry. It's for the flowers. Why
don't you...

Tires can be heard crunching the gravel as a car pulls into
the Feur's driveway.

MRS. FEUR
Oh God. He's back. I'm sorry. Please
forget that I... I don't know what
I'm saying. Please...

CLAIRE
Wait! Don't go...

Claire listens to the sound of NAKED FOOTSTEPS, followed by
a LARGE FRONT DOOR swinging shut. A CAR DOOR swings open and
a MAN'S SHOES follow down the path.

Claire pulls back from the crack and leans against the fence
as the door closes a second time. She sits there for a moment
listening, but all is quiet.

CLAIRE (V.O.)
She sounded terrified.

INT. DINING ROOM - NIGHT

Claire and Norman eat dinner. A rainstorm pelts the windows.

NORMAN
Of what?

CLAIRE
Of him I think.

NORMAN
Did she say that?

CLAIRE
More or less.

Norman chews.

NORMAN
Honey, they're young. They're probably
newlyweds.

CLAIRE
I'm telling you. There was something
in her voice...

NORMAN
Remember how we were?

CLAIRE
Not like this. We were never like
this.
(beat)
I want to go over there. After dinner,
we can --

NORMAN
Why?

CLAIRE
To make sure she's all right.

Norman puts down his fork.

NORMAN
Claire, honey, we are not going to
march next door and accuse our new
neighbor of --

CLAIRE
(overlapping)
That's not what I'm sug --

NORMAN
...when tonight they'll probably be
keeping us awake.

CLAIRE
But what if something happens?

NORMAN
Claire...

CLAIRE
I'd never be able to live with myself --

NORMAN
(reassuring)
Nothing's going to happen.
(beat)
Besides, I have to work tonight. The
conference is in less than two weeks.
I've got to stay focused on that for
just a little longer.
(beat)
This is...

CLAIRE
I know.

NORMAN
It's what I've been working for.

She glances down at her untouched plate.

CLAIRE
I just wish you could have heard
her.

NORMAN
Look, I'll call Harvey Tomes in the
Psych department, see what I can
find out.

CLAIRE
Promise?

He gives her a "Didn't I just say so" look. She smiles.

CLAIRE
I'll make you some coffee.

She reaches for his plate to clear it. Norman grabs her hand
and kisses it.

INT. NORMAN AND CLAIRE'S ROOM - NIGHT

Norman snores softly. Claire is awakened by the continuing
STORM. She pads out to Norman's turreted library. Rain pelts
the glass. Her face is briefly illuminated by the LIGHTHOUSE
BEAM.

She hears the sound of a DOOR CLOSING and moves to get a
better view of the Feur's. Nothing but blackness. Just as
she's turning to go back to bed. A LIGHTNING FLASH lights up
the night. Claire's eyes go wide.

CLAIRE'S POV

In the split second of brilliance, she sees Mr. Feur, in
shirt-sleeves, drenched, dragging A LARGE DUFFEL toward the
open trunk of his car.

CLAIRE
(in a hoarse whisper)
Norman!

He's dead to the world. She calls to him again.

CLAIRE
Norman, you have to look at this!

NORMAN
Mmnph.

CLAIRE
Hurry...

Another flash illuminates... Norman at her side.

CLAIRE
Look!

...an EMPTY DRIVEWAY, then blackness.

NORMAN
What is it? What's the matter?

She stares down into the darkness.

CLAIRE
Nothing. There was... I thought I
saw something.

NORMAN
Is it gone?

THE BEACON illuminates the empty driveway. She nods.

NORMAN
Come on, let's go back to bed.

Yet another bolt of lightning reveals Claire, still at the
window.

EXT. BACKYARD - MORNING

Claire sets up a camera and tripod. She steps back and aims
her camera. She glances up at a large upstairs window at the
FEUR'S HOUSE. One side of the curtain seems to be pulled
open, but no one's there.

Feeling self-conscious, she turns back to the camera. The
morning sun hits the flowers just right and she SNAPS SEVERAL
PICTURES OF THEM against her lovely house.

She glances back at the Feur's window. The CURTAIN IS NOW
CLOSED.

She walks over to the fence and tries to peek through it.

When this doesn't work, she drags a lawn chair over and peers
across the fence. She can barely see over, but glimpses:

A DEEP FURROW in the mud of the driveway. Just then, a car
pulls into the driveway, Claire scrambles down from her perch.

EXT. DRIVEWAY - DAY

Claire walks out to find her best friend, JODY, pretty, in
her forties, wearing hip, hippie-ish clothes.

CLAIRE
Hey there.

Jody hugs her.

JODY
How you holding up?

CLAIRE
Good. I'm good.

JODY
You are?

CLAIRE
Why does everyone find that so
surprising?

JODY
(are you kidding?)
Cause... your... only daughter just
went away to school... who you were
incredibly close with and I'd be
tripping...

CLAIRE
Okay, I'm a little tender.

JODY
Well good. So you're human.

CLAIRE
And so far my day has consisted of
taking pictures of my roses for the
garden club.

JODY
Wow. Got here just in time.
(reaching into her
bag)
I brought you this.

She proffers several homemade tea bags.

CLAIRE
What is it?

JODY
Kambucha mushroom tea...

CLAIRE
Jody --

JODY
It soothes heart-ache and promotes
psychic wellness. Sela suggested I
bring --

CLAIRE
You're discussing me with your
psychic?

JODY
She's not a psychic. Just a very
enlightened spirit.

CLAIRE
Thanks, but I'm fine.

JODY
(pressing it into her
hand)
So you'll have some later.
(beat)
Notice anything... different?

Claire gives her friend the once over, then notices the mint
Karman-Ghia behind her.

CLAIRE
Oh my god. You bought it.

JODY
Yep.

CLAIRE
It's niiice.

JODY
Beautiful thing, alimony. Lose a
husband, get a car. Think it'll help
me pick up dudes?

CLAIRE
Absolutely.

JODY
Listen, I've gotta run. I just thought
I'd stop by and see if you want to
take the boat out, say Thursday
morning?

CLAIRE
You got it.

Jody grins.

JODY
See you then.

Jody drives off. Claire walks down the driveway to her front
door and sees Mr. Feur staring at her from a window. She
starts to wave, but the curtain is drawn shut.

Claire arrives at the front door and reaches out to touch
the doorknob. She stops. A FAINT RUSTLING can be heard from
within. Claire quietly opens the door and moves into:

INT. FOYER - DAY

Claire stops inside the door. Now it sounds like WHISPERING.

Two voices, tense, impassioned. It seems to be coming from
Norman's study. She gathers her nerve, then bursts into the
room.

INT. NORMAN'S STUDY - DAY

But the whispering has suddenly stopped.

CLAIRE
Hello?

The lovely circular room is completely empty. She looks
around, puzzled. Cooper, the family's aging lab, casually
ambles over.

CLAIRE
(to Cooper)
Please tell me you heard that.

EXT. LAKE - DAY

Claire and Cooper, out on a walk, emerge onto large rocks at
the water's edge. Claire tosses a long stick for Cooper, who
bolts out onto the LONG WOODEN DOCK. Claire gazes at the
LIGHTHOUSE across the lake and a long BRIDGE in the distance.

Cooper starts BARKING and looking down into the water.

Claire arrives at Cooper's side and stares down into the
dark water.

CLAIRE
Cooper... what do you see?

She looks down and sees nothing but her own reflection. After
a moment, she notices a FAINT WHITE SHAPE directly in the
reflection of her face. Cooper rumbles a low growl. The shape
seems to be gaining definition.

RRRING!

Claire gasps quietly, then reaches into a pocket in her
sweater and pulls out a cordless phone.

CLAIRE
(into phone)
Hi.

NORMAN (V.O.)
(on the other end)
I'm stuck here for another couple of
hours.

Claire's smile fades.

CLAIRE
Oh.

NORMAN (V.O.)
Unless you need me to come home...

CLAIRE
No, no. It's fine.

Claire slowly leans out over the water to check her
reflection...

NORMAN (V.O.)
You sure?

...but the shape is gone.

NORMAN (V.O.)
Claire?

CLAIRE
Huh? Absolutely. Take your time.

She clicks off the phone and looks down at the calm water.

INT. WORK ROOM - NIGHT

Claire sits in a small workroom at a computer. She focuses
intently on the screen.

ANGLE

It's ALICE'S COMPUTER SOLITAIRE. She flips the last card and
an animated Queen of Hearts, accompanied by a series of
musical notes, parades across the screen.

QUEEN OF HEARTS
(on computer)
You lost! Off with your head!

Claire hits "New Game" and watches as a fresh hand of cyber
solitaire is dealt. She suddenly has a thought and disappears
into the kitchen.

INT. KITCHEN - NIGHT

She glances at Jody's tea, smiles, then refills her glass of
red wine. She picks up the phone from its cradle and moves
into:

INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

She dials a number. LOUD REGGAE can be heard blaring through
the phone.

CLAIRE
(straining to be heard)
Hello? I'm looking for Caitlin
Spencer. She's in 314... Well, could
you check?

She plugs one ear.

CLAIRE
Oh. Well, just tell her that her
mother called. Her mother. Thank
you. Excuse me, how can you study
with that?

The noise abruptly stops. Claire clicks off the phone and
replaces it in the sweater pocket. She tunes the stereo to a
classical music station.

INT. WORK ROOM - NIGHT

She walks in, places the cordless phone on a BASE UNIT, then
hears a different set of musical notes from the computer.

She stares at the screen, stunned.

ANGLE

The game has been finished. Cards with faces swarm chaotically
across the screen with the message: YOU WIN!

CLAIRE
Oh. Kay.

Without warning, the radio dial rips cacophonously past
several stations and comes to a stop on some angry, punkish
rock and roll.

CLAIRE
Jesus...

She bolts around a corner to the stereo. The music is chaotic
and deafening. She finds Cooper growling at... no one. She
turns off the stereo. Cooper suddenly bolts down the hall.
She follows him.

INT. FOYER - NIGHT

The foyer's empty, but the front door is open. Claire
nervously walks out and looks around.

CLAIRE
Cooper!

POV - THE GARDEN

No sign of the dog.

Claire turns to go back inside. When she touches the doorknob,
she hears the whispering again. A fleeting shadow draws her
eye to a COAT RACK MIRROR which reflects directly into the
study.

CLAIRE
Hello...?!

The whispering stops.

INT. NORMAN'S LAB - NIGHT

Claire walks in to find Norman surrounded by several GRAD
STUDENTS. At school he's a very different man; pressed shirt
and tie, hair neatly brushed back.

They're performing some unseen procedure on a live sheep in
a containment harness. She stops by the door to watch him.

NORMAN
...and then what... Courtney?

An intense ASIAN GIRL answers.

COURTNEY
We administer the Halothane.

NORMAN
Dosage?

She glances at her notes.

COURTNEY
Three point five cc's.

NORMAN
Excellent. Properties? Andrew from
downtown...

Andrew, tall razor thin, was waiting for this.

ANDREW
An organic, neuromuscular blocking
agent, which when administered in
aerosol form temporarily renders the
subject immobile.

NORMAN
Nothing but net.

He measures out the liquid from a blue plastic bottle into
an apparatus connected to an inhalation mask on the sheep.

NORMAN
Prudence here's an old friend.

He moves to the sheep's head and strokes it as he nods to
Courtney who turns a valve on the apparatus. The sheep
suddenly goes completely still. Norman moves around and begins
a brief procedure.

NORMAN
I try to stay on her good side because
I owe her my career and most of our
grant money. Why else?

He completes the procedure. They look at him blankly.

NORMAN
Always do unto others as you'd have
others do unto your ewe.

Groans, laughter. He stops Claire.

NORMAN
That'll do it. Write this up for
Tuesday!

Andrew and Amy tend to Prudence, the rest leave. Claire moves
over to him. They kiss. Norman packs notes and some of the
chemicals into a LEATHER CASE.

NORMAN
(warm)
What are you doing here?

CLAIRE
There were some noises. I didn't
want to disturb you.

She watches as the sheep slowly becomes reanimated and is
led out of the room.

NORMAN
What do you mean? Some noises where?

CLAIRE
In the house. I was scared.

NORMAN
Did you call the police?

CLAIRE
No. Can you drive me home? I'll bring
you back in the morning.

NORMAN
Of course.

He takes her arm.

INT. THE FOYER - NIGHT

Norman pushes open the front door. Cooper pads over, wagging
his tail. They walk together past the stereo into...

INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

...the living room. All is quiet. They move into...

INT. NORMAN'S STUDY - NIGHT

It's undisturbed. Norman checks the window locks.

CLAIRE
It was there. This angry music all
by itself. And I heard whispering.

NORMAN
What kind of whispering?

CLAIRE
I don't know. Just... whispering.

He nods as Cooper appears.

NORMAN
What'd you see, Coop?

The dog stares blankly.

CLAIRE
(to Cooper)
Tell him!

Norman smiles.

INT. BEDROOM - NIGHT

Norman sits on the bed and pulls off his shoes.

NORMAN
I'm gonna have the police check on
the house.

Claire leans against the window sill.

CLAIRE
Oh great, "Can you look in on my
wife, she's hearing voices?" Wait'll
that gets around.

He walks over to her.

NORMAN
I've got the conference next week. I
want you to feel safe.

CLAIRE
I do, I do. I'm sure I'm just... how
was your day?

He goes to his dresser and fishes a little joint from a box
in his dresser.

NORMAN
Think I may have cracked it.

CLAIRE
Really?

She produces a match and lights it. They sit on the bed.

NORMAN
I think so. Maybe.

CLAIRE
You are so brilliant.

NORMAN
Yep.

CLAIRE
Madame Curie, Jonas Salk, Norman
Spencer...

NORMAN
(smiling)
You know what that does to me.

She takes a little puff on the joint as he kisses her neck.

NORMAN
(stopping)
Ohmigod. You'll never believe... I
saw Schumway...

CLAIRE
You're kidding.

NORMAN
He's here giving some arcane spiel
for the physics department, so Bob
Shine introduces us...

CLAIRE
Wow.

He nods, Claire passes the joint back.

NORMAN
And he says... you'll fucking love
this, he says, "Doctor Spencer, I am
a great admirer of your work..."

CLAIRE
Well, that's nice.

NORMAN
"...especially Spencer's Theorem..."

CLAIRE
(overlapping)
Oh, no...

NORMAN
"...of Perpetual Distances."
(beat)
Everybody's checking their shoelaces.
Pins drop. "I'm afraid you've mistaken
me," I say...

CLAIRE
(overlapping)
That's...

NORMAN
"...for my father."

CLAIRE
I'm so sorry.

NORMAN
Didn't know he was dead, every
stinking paper on the globe.

CLAIRE
That's just mean.
(indicating joint)
Oh. Jody wanted to know if I could
get her some.

NORMAN
(quickly glancing
over)
Did you tell her?

CLAIRE
What? No. No.

NORMAN
You didn't?

CLAIRE
(with a smile)
Norman, you are so funny about that.
No, I didn't.

He takes a little toke, then vanishes into the bathroom.

NORMAN (O.S.)
Cause that would be really --

She lays back on the bed. Sounds of flushing.

CLAIRE
I didn't.

He reappears without the joint.

NORMAN
Sorry. You understand.

CLAIRE
Did you call about the Feurs?

NORMAN
Oh, right. Yes. Harvey says the guy's
a sweetheart. Wouldn't hurt a fly.

CLAIRE
Huh.

Claire ponders this. Norman turns off the light and joins
her on the bed. He kisses her knee.

NORMAN
Do the brilliant Norman stuff some
more.

Then starts working his way up her thigh.

NORMAN
And speak up.

Claire smiles.

INT. LIVING ROOM - AFTERNOON

Claire sits frozen, cello between her legs, bow hovering in
position. After an uncomfortable long pause, she touches bow
to string, drawing in a breath at the power of the sound.

Claire takes another deep breath, then launches into a
beautiful and melancholy piece of music. She's very, very
good. Eyes closed. Her body begins to sway slightly as her
left hand vibratos like butterfly wings on the neck.

She reaches a difficult transition and falters. She seems
almost surprised. She attacks the transition again, and again
falters. Claire bites her lower lip and tries yet again,
this time failing completely.

She sits back in the chair, despondent. Almost as an
afterthought, she sadly drags the bow across strings. At the
end of the tone, something catches her ear. She can just
make out the HINT OF A FAINT FEMININE VOICE echoing the tone.

She sits up and plays a different note, then another. Each
time the soft mournful voice becomes more distinct. Finally
she plays a sharp, higher pitched note. The voice echoes
with a distinct, unsettling shriek.

CRASH!

INT. NORMAN'S STUDY - DUSK

Claire walks in and sees:

INSERT --

Lying on the floor... A FRAMED NEWSPAPER PHOTOGRAPH OF NORMAN
AND CLAIRE.

The caption announces that he's being promoted to the
"distinguished DUPONT CHAIR IN GENETICS." Through the spider-
webbed glass, Norman can be seen shaking hands with an older
academic, hugging a smiling Claire to his side.

Claire kneels down to gather the picture. A single shard of
glass is missing. She finds it a foot away by a distinctive
knot in the wood floor.

She notices a COPPER GLINT in the point of glass, but when
she moves it, it's gone. She places the pieces of broken
glass on the frame and stands.

Out of the window directly in front of her sees: Mr. Feur,
removing a DIRT COVERED SHOVEL from his trunk. She glances
down at the picture, then back up at Mr. Feur, who carries
the shovel around back.

CLAIRE
Oh no...

Claire wraps up the broken picture. She hears a car door
slam and glances out the window in time to see Mr. Feur
driving off.

EXT. GARDEN - DAY

A stiff autumn breeze. Claire stands at the fence.

CLAIRE
Mrs. Feur?

She looks through the tiny crack. Nothing.

CLAIRE
Hello?
(beat)
Are you there?

Silence.

EXT. THE FEUR'S - DAY

Claire glances down as she walks past THE FURROW. She looks
up at the house, which seems quite placid, then slowly heads
around back.

EXT. FEUR'S BACK PORCH - DAY

She takes in the lake view from the large porch. The wind is
really blowing. Her eye catches on something. Propped against
the back door...

THE SOIL COVERED SHOVEL

Claire takes a pinch of soil from the shovel and tastes it,
then knocks at the back door. There's no answer. She knocks
again. Nothing. She's turning to go, then the door swings
open. The smile fades from Claire's face.

CLAIRE'S POV

The immense MR. FEUR filling the doorway.

MR. FEUR
Yes?

CLAIRE
Um...

MR. FEUR
I'm running late here. I just came
back for my briefcase.

CLAIRE
Right. Well, I wanted to stop by to
welcome you to the uh, to the
neighborhood. I'm Claire Spencer.
From next door.

MR. FEUR
This really isn't a good time.

He starts to close the door.

CLAIRE
Well maybe your wife...

MR. FEUR
(growing cold)
She isn't here.

CLAIRE
When... when will she be back?

MR. FEUR
I don't know.

CLAIRE
Oh-kay...

MR. FEUR
I have to go.

Slam. And Claire is staring at a closed door.

JODY (V.O.)
What do you mean she's gone?

EXT. LAKE - DAY

Claire and Jody knife slowly through the water in the
Spencer's sailboat heading back toward the dock, the OLD
LIGHTHOUSE, the BRIDE in the background.

CLAIRE
She's not there. I haven't seen her
since that morning. Well, I mean,
I've never actually seen her, but
I'm telling you, she's disappeared.

Jody finishes securing a line. The breeze is mild, so they
just cruise with the wind.

JODY
What are you saying?

Claire just looks at her.

JODY
You think he killed her?

CLAIRE
I don't know. When you say it, it
sounds crazy. But what else could it
all be?

Jody shakes her head.

CLAIRE
I mean, he's so kind of grim and
daunting, and she sounded terrified
of something.

Claire glances over at Jody.

CLAIRE
(laughing to herself)
Listen to me. I sound like some middle-
aged Nancy Drew.

Jody regards her. After a beat:

JODY
Know what I think?

CLAIRE
What?

JODY
Seance.

CLAIRE
Jody, no...

JODY
Telling you...

CLAIRE
(overlapping)
...no... no... no...

JODY
Just bought this beautiful antique
Ouija.

CLAIRE
Please. That's all I need.

Jody shrugs, "Have it your way." Beat.

JODY
Hey, look.

CLAIRE'S HOUSE across the lake.

JODY
So pretty.

CLAIRE'S POV

A FIGURE in the turreted window of Norman's study.

CLAIRE
Someone's there.

JODY
What?

CLAIRE
In the window. Norman's at work.

JODY
I don't...

Claire looks over at Jody.

CLAIRE
(pointing)
There. In the study. Don't you see --

She looks again -- nothing.

CLAIRE
Wow. I'm losing it.

JODY
No, you're not.
(beat)
But a presence in your house is not
something to be taken lightly.

Claire stares back at the house.

INT. KITCHEN - NIGHT

Claire walks in and sets down some packages. She opens one
and pulls out new toothpaste and... AN ENVELOPE -- the kind
your pictures come back in. She absently leafs through them,
then freezes. She gapes at one of the shots.

CLAIRE
Oh boy...

INT. UPSTAIRS - NIGHT

Claire turns off the lights and crouches down. She raises a
pair of BINOCULARS.

POV - BINOCULARS

Claire rakes the binoculars across the Feur's house... past
their car parked in front until she finds A LIGHT ON
DOWNSTAIRS.

The tall, powerfully built Mr. Feur walks into the room and
sits by himself at the dining room table, which is set for
one. He eats a TV dinner, slowly chewing and staring straight
ahead. He sips from a can of beer.

Just then... A HAND GRABS CLAIRE'S ARM. She lets out a screech
and turns to see Norman standing beside her.

NORMAN
What are you doing?

She glances back out the window and sees Mr. Feur standing
at the window, paging the curtain. She squats down, pulling
Norman with her.

CLAIRE
(shrill whisper)
Get down! He'll see.

NORMAN
(also whispers)
What's going on, Claire?

CLAIRE
Shhhh.

She peers over the sill in time to see Mr. Feur turning away
from the window. She takes Norman by the hand and leads him
downstairs.

INT. CLAIRE'S KITCHEN - NIGHT

She leads Norman in.

NORMAN
(still whispering)
Why am I...
(full voice)
Why am I whispering in my own house?

Claire turns.

CLAIRE
He killed her.

NORMAN
What?

CLAIRE
He did. She's in the picture. I went
over to look and she's gone. The
table was set for one.

NORMAN
And that means he murdered his wife?
This is getting ridic --

CLAIRE
No, no, no, no. The soil on the
shovel, his shovel... that's clay.
It's not from here, believe me, I...
(frustrated, she grabs
the photos)
All right, look at this.

She triumphantly thrusts one before him. Norman looks at it.

NORMAN
Our house.

CLAIRE
No. Look! In the window.

The ROSES. She points out a HAZY FIGURE in the TURRETED WINDOW
of the study. Norman takes it over to the light.

NORMAN
It's a flare.

CLAIRE
A flare?

NORMAN
From the sun. It's a reflection on
the glass.

CLAIRE
It's her! I'm telling you. She
whispered and turned on the music.
She's trying to contact me!

NORMAN
(making sure he's got
it)
It's a ghost.

Norman shakes his head. He looks again at the picture, does
a quick calculation.

NORMAN
You took this in the morning, didn't
you?

She nods slightly.

NORMAN
When the sun would be exactly right.

She's got him.

CLAIRE
Then why isn't it in any of the other
pictures?

She thrusts the batch at him. He peruses the other few shots
of the garden.

NORMAN
A cloud passed. Or it's a bounce off
the lake. See?

She looks. He might not be wrong.

CLAIRE
Where is she then?

NORMAN
She could be out. She could be sick
in bed for all we know.

CLAIRE
Okay. Okay. I'll bet there's... Look
at this.

She leads him out of the room.

INT. WORK ROOM - NIGHT

Claire stares at the computer screen triumphantly.

CLAIRE
See?

NORMAN
What am I looking at?

CLAIRE
(indicating completed
solitaire game)
I didn't do that.

NORMAN
Who did? Mrs. Feur?

CLAIRE
Maybe. Point is... not me.

NORMAN
Right. And why is she here? If he
killed her, why doesn't she haunt
him?

CLAIRE
She was lonely, I talked to her.
Norman, I know how it looks, but --

NORMAN
Claire, listen to me. I know you're
under some strain. But there's no
such thing as ghosts. They don't
exist. Our neighbor did not kill his
wife, and I... wait, why aren't you
dressed?

CLAIRE
Dressed?

NORMAN
Dinner. With Stan and his new girl.

CLAIRE
When?

NORMAN
What do you mean? Claire, we talked
about it. You didn't want Japanese,
I said, our first date since...

CLAIRE
(she seems confused)
Oh.

NORMAN
...since Caitlin. You don't remember
this?

CLAIRE
Tonight?

NORMAN
Yes, tonight. We're going to be --

She looks at his watch.

CLAIRE
Fashionably five minutes late.

She bolts up the stairs.

INT. NORMAN'S PICKUP TRUCK - NIGHT

They drive across the bridge.

NORMAN
(concerned, exasperated)
When you do this, I swear...

CLAIRE
(overlapping)
...Don't get all...

NORMAN
...like it never even happened...

CLAIRE
Okay, okay, I'm sure that I just...

He pulls out a cell phone and punches in a number.

CLAIRE
What are you doing?

NORMAN
Restaurant. Let them know we're
running late.

CLAIRE
Five minutes?

The phone flashes... "NO SERVICE."

CLAIRE
You're not at the center.

NORMAN
(overlapping)
I know I'm not at the center of the
bridge.

CLAIRE
We're going to be fine.

They near the far side of the bridge. Norman looks down at
the cell phone, which now reads, "ROAM." He presses a button.

NORMAN
There we go.

CLAIRE
Well, that's a relief.

He shoots her a look.

INT. RESTAURANT - NIGHT

A cozy, candlelit Italian place in town. Claire and Norman
arrive at the table. STAN rises. The chair next to him is
empty. He kisses her cheek.

CLAIRE
Hi Stan. Sorry we're late.
(too earnest)
It was my fault.

She greets Stan, a friendly looking man in his forties.

STAN
We just got here.

Claire flashes a semi-playful look back at Norman.

CLAIRE
Where's the new squeeze?

A VOICE speaks out from behind her.

VOICE
Here I am.

Claire turns to find A TALL, ELEGANT BRUNETTE standing behind
her. The woman's face registers some shock.

STAN
I'd like you to meet...

CLAIRE
Elena?

ELENA
Ohmigod...

The two women embrace, then beam at each other.

CLAIRE
Wow.

ELENA
This is...

CLAIRE
(to Norman)
We know each other.

NORMAN
Hope so.

LATER

Post meal. Several empty wine bottle decorate the table.

ELENA
We had this Finnish conductor, Aki,
Laki, something. He had these
ridiculous bangs. And he'd sweep
them off with his baton every minute
or so, and it drove us insane,
remember?

Claire nods.

CLAIRE
He looked like one of the Monkees.

ELENA
Anyway, Claire slept with him...

CLAIRE
I didn't sleep with him.

ELENA
...just so she could cut them off.

CLAIRE
He was so pissed.

ELENA
I came in from my room...

CLAIRE
(interjecting)
We were suite mates.

ELENA
And there's this brilliant conductor
in purple briefs with no bangs cursing
his ass off in Finnish.

CLAIRE
Oh God...

They dissolve into giggles. Norman and Stan smile.

STAN
Well...

NORMAN
(to Stan)
I made an honest woman out of her.

Elena puts her hand on Claire's.

ELENA
(to Stan)
You should have heard her play.

CLAIRE
Stop.

ELENA
We both auditioned for the
Philharmonic. One cello position
open.

CLAIRE
Do we have to?

ELENA
And I kicked ass. My best stuff.
Then I stood in the hallway and
listened to her audition... and I
cried.

CLAIRE
She's making this up.

ELENA
I'm not. Couldn't pick up my cello
for weeks.

STAN
What happened?

Elena looks at Claire, then smiles.

ELENA
She got it.
(beat)
Turned it down.

CLAIRE
I met a dashing young grad student
after a recital one night...

Claire puts her arm around Norman.

CLAIRE
...and three months later I was
married.

He squeezes her hand.

INT. WORK ROOM - DAY

Claire walks into the work room with the portable phone to
her ear and a cup of Jody's special tea. She sniffs it and
makes a face as she turns on the computer. After several
rings a GIRL picks up on the other end.

CLAIRE
(on phone)
Caitlin?

GIRL'S VOICE
(overlapping)
Can you hang up? I'm trying to make
a call.

The line goes dead. Claire hits redial and gets... a BUSY
SIGNAL. She clicks the phone off as the computer boots up.

Claire puts the phone down and starts a game of Alice's
Solitaire. She turns a card and waits.

CLAIRE
Gee, that's tricky. Sure could use
some help.

She waits, the cursor blinks benignly.

CLAIRE
Come on...

Nothing happens.

INT. NORMAN AND CLAIRE'S ROOM - DAY

She walks into the room and notices STEAM wafting from the
cracked bathroom door.

INT. BATHROOM - DAY

Claire enters the steamy bathroom. The tub is nearly
overflowing with water. She squats down to drain the tub.

She stops, feeling watched, then slowly peers behind her...
no one's there. Claire reaches toward the water to yank the
plug's chain, then freezes. In the bathwater's still
reflection she see:

A PRETTY YOUNG BLOND standing beside her. Startled, she pops
up and slams into the SHOWER HEAD.

Claire collapses over the side of the tub, her head dipping
underwater. A small cloud of red surrounds her. Moments later,
an arm wraps around her.

CUT TO:

VOICE (O.S.)
Claire...

INT. BATHROOM - DAY

CLAIRE'S POV - A FACE sharpens into focus hovering above
her... Norman.

INT. BEDROOM - DAY

Claire sits on the bed. Norman dabs the blood from a tiny
cut on the back of her head.

CLAIRE
I don't need a shrink.

NORMAN
(gently)
Harvey says he's amazing.

CLAIRE
Norman...

NORMAN
What can it hurt to talk to someone?

She goes to her dresser and gets a PRESCRIPTION BOTTLE and
starts to open it. Norman gently places a hand on her arm.

NORMAN
Please.

She shoots him a look...

NORMAN
You promised.

...and puts the pills down.

NORMAN
(gently)
Claire, she's been a huge part of
your life for seventeen years. If
you weren't thrown off balance by
this, then something would be wrong.

CLAIRE
I never said I wasn't upset. Of course
I'm upset. I miss her terribly. But
I know what I saw and what I heard...
and it wasn't some "symptom" of
something...

NORMAN
I never said...

CLAIRE
...and I don't think I'm some lonely,
middle-aged woman cracking up.

Beat.

NORMAN
Are you lonely?

CLAIRE
No! And I don't need a psychiatrist!

INT. DR. DRAYTON'S OFFICE - DAY

Claire sits in a comfortable looking chair with her purse in
her lap, arms crossed.

DR. DRAYTON (O.S.)
(a smooth, mellifluous
baritone)
Who's idea was it?

CLAIRE
Mine. His. We both... thought...

She trails off. Camera slowly pulls back to reveal, DR.
TIMOTHY DRAYTON, a stocky, light skinned black man in his
late forties with a kind face and piercing brown eyes.

CLAIRE
I didn't want to come.

DR. DRAYTON
Then why did you?

CLAIRE
Because he was worried about me.

DR. DRAYTON
Your husband?

CLAIRE
Yes.
(beat)
I'm sure he's hoping you'll pack me
full of prozac so he can live out
his life in peace.

DR. DRAYTON
Do you really think so?

CLAIRE
No.

There's a pause.

DR. DRAYTON
Why is he worried?

CLAIRE
Because, I don't know, because
sometimes... sometimes I forget
things... and ever since Caitlin
left, ever since my daughter left
for school, there've been... I fainted
and...
(beat)
Why is this so hard?

Dr. Drayton takes a little silver bowl full of shiny, red
FIREBALLS next to his chair. He proffers it to Claire.

DR. DRAYTON
Fireball?

CLAIRE
You're joking.

He shakes his head. She shrugs, then grabs one and pops it
into her mouth.

DR. DRAYTON
It's hard because I'm a complete
stranger and what we're talking about
is incredibly personal. Besides, the
first time most people come here, a
part of them is wondering if I'm
gonna think they're crazy.

She sucks on the fireball and slowly nods.

DR. DRAYTON
Don't worry, I'm required to have at
least three sessions in order to
commit.

Her eyes get a little wider.

DR. DRAYTON
Now that's a joke.

She manages an unsteady smile.

DR. DRAYTON
I have some training at helping people
through the stressful moments in
life, one of which you may or may
not be experiencing. If you want to
get some stuff off your chest, great.
If not...

He smiles and shrugs, "no problem." She stares at him for a
moment.

CLAIRE
(re: fireball)
These are good.

DR. DRAYTON
Mm-hmm.

She studies him for a moment.

CLAIRE
There's a ghost in my house.

He nods slightly, as if she's told him, "I have some anxiety."
Claire goes on.

CLAIRE
She finished my solitaire game and
turned on the radio... she likes
rock and roll. Angry rock and roll.

DR. DRAYTON
How do you know it's a she?

CLAIRE
I saw her in the water. Beside me.
She was filling the bathtub.

DR. DRAYTON
What does she look like?

CLAIRE
Pretty. She's a blond.

DR. DRAYTON
Do you have any idea who she is?

CLAIRE
Um... I'd rather not say... just
yet.

DR. DRAYTON
Fine.

CLAIRE
What do you think I should do?

He thinks for a moment, then:

DR. DRAYTON
Try to contact her.

Claire nearly swallows her fireball.

CLAIRE
What?

DR. DRAYTON
Try to communicate with her somehow.

CLAIRE
You think that'll help?

DR. DRAYTON
Can't hurt. And I think it's important
you find out what she wants.

Claire ponders this for a moment, then looks back up at him.

CLAIRE
Are you humoring me?

DR. DRAYTON
Nope.

She seems satisfied by his sincerity.

CLAIRE
How?

DR. DRAYTON
I don't know. My aunt used to use my
uncle's old pajamas and a candle.

He stands. Claire nods, then stands. She smiles too.

CLAIRE
Is this time okay?

He nods.

INT. BATHROOM - NIGHT

Claire walks in carrying a half-empty bottle of wine. She
looks over at Jody, who turns off the lights. Jody then
strikes a match and lights a LARGE CANDLE. She unveils her
carved ANTIQUE OUIJA BOARD.

JODY
Sit down here.

CLAIRE
(nervous, jokey)
Are we hoping the ghost is going to
have to pee?

Jody turns to her, deadly serious.

JODY
Isn't this where you saw her?

Claire's smile fades. She nods.

JODY
Then this is where she'll be.

They sit cross legged, the board between them.

JODY
Place your fingers on the planchette.

CLAIRE
The planchette?

JODY
This.

Jody indicates the wooden pointing device. Each woman grasps
an edge.

JODY
(in a low voice)
We wish to commune with the spirit
of Mrs. Feur.
(to Claire)
What's her first name?

CLAIRE
I don't know.

Jody closes her eyes. Claire follows suit.

JODY
I call forth the entity that is
haunting this house.

They look down at the planchette, which hasn't moved.

JODY
Mrs. Feur?

There's still no movement.

CLAIRE
Nothing's happening.

JODY
Shhh.

Jody focuses intently.

JODY
Reveal yourself to us.

A long moment passes. It's starting to seem like a bust.

Suddenly, THE CANDLE FLARES. Even Jody seems startled.

JODY
(to the spirit)
Who... who are you?

At first, nothing happens. Then, slowly, the planchette starts
to move across the board.

CLAIRE
Are you doing that?

Jody shakes her head.

CLAIRE
I'm not doing that.

The planchette comes to rest on the letter "M." Moments later,
it starts to move again drifting over and stopping on "E."

CLAIRE
Oh...

JODY
M-E...

It starts to drift again, moving slowly toward the space
between "E" and "F." The planchette stops on "F." Jody removes
her fingers from the device.

JODY
Mef? What's Mef?

CLAIRE
It's initials. F is Feur. It's her.

Suddenly, the CANDLE starts flickering strangely and THE
PLANCHETTE SLIDES JERKILY ON ITS OWN...M-E-F, M-E-F...

JODY
Shit...

Jody stumbles backwards, gasping.

JODY
Did you see that?

Claire leans in.

CLAIRE
(to ghost)
What happened to you?

The CANDLE GOES OUT.

JODY
Oh God...

Jody bolts. Claire follows.

EXT. HALLWAY - NIGHT

Claire catches up to the completely spooked Jody outside the
work room. She holds onto her arm.

JODY
I have to go.

CLAIRE
Jody, wait.

Cooper's growling in the work room. They look in.

JODY
Claire, this is... this is...

Claire, transfixed, walks in.

INT. WORK ROOM - NIGHT

She stares at the computer screen, which is being filled
with letters at an amazing speed.

MEFMEFMEFMEFMEFMEFMEF...

She hears the front door swing open.

CLAIRE
Jody!

INT. FOYER - NIGHT

Claire arrives at the open front door in time to see the
Karman-Ghia tearing out of the driveway. She turns and goes
back into the house.

CRASH!

She edges into...

INT. NORMAN'S STUDY - NIGHT

The picture has, once again, tumbled from its spot. She drops
to her knees over the picture. This time THE GLASS IS
SHATTERED. When she picks out the remaining shards, the
newspaper photo slides out. Claire glances at the benign
news stories on the back.

She looks around and spots a piece of glass wedged in a crack
in the floor boards by the knot.

CLAIRE'S POV

The piece of glass, wedged next to what looks like A COPPER
COIN in the crack. It's too big to be a penny.

She tries to use the piece of glass to pry it free, but
recoils. A tiny drop of blood appears on her finger, which
she pops into her mouth.

INT. BATHROOM - NIGHT

Still sucking on her finger, Claire walks in and begins to
clean up the remains of the seance. She bends down to pick
up the Ouija board, then stops when she notices that the tub
is again full to the brink of overflowing.

CLAIRE
What do you want?!

Claire peers around, frustrated, half waiting for a reply.

There is only silence. She reaches in to pull the plug, nearly
scalding her hand. When she turns for a hand towel she finds
a message traced into the steamed-up mirror:

"YOU KNOW"

She draws in a breath and darts out of the bathroom.

EXT. LAB BUILDING - NIGHT

Norman nods to a SECURITY GUARD as he leaves a darkened
university building. He sees Claire standing at the foot of
the steps.

NORMAN
What are you doing out here?

CLAIRE
He killed her. I'm not crazy. He
killed her and --

NORMAN
This is the Feur thing?

CLAIRE
Yes. And he's going to get away with
it.

Norman's momentarily speechless.

NORMAN
How do you know this?

CLAIRE
We had a seance.

NORMAN
Who did?

CLAIRE
Jody and I. And she was there, Norman,
she was. It scared Jody so bad she
had to leave.

NORMAN
How did you --

CLAIRE
Jody brought a Ouija board and we
summoned her.

He regards her for a moment.

NORMAN
Are you angry at me?

This stops Claire in her tracks.

CLAIRE
What?

NORMAN
Maybe you resent how busy I've been.

CLAIRE
What are you...? No.

NORMAN
You know what I've got at stake with
this paper. You know that. I can't
help but think that you're doing
this now to hurt me, or to sabotage
me somehow.

CLAIRE
Sabotage?

NORMAN
Ever since the accident I've been
worried that you'd been unhappy,
or...

CLAIRE
The accident...?

NORMAN
But then you've been so much better...

CLAIRE
Norman, this isn't about you. This
is something that's happening to me.
It's not to get even... and it's not
some warped bid for attention. Some
strange things are happening in our
house, whether you believe in them
or not...

NORMAN
Sweetheart --

CLAIRE
No! Not sweetheart, no. I believe in
what's happening. I don't want to,
but I do. I guess I was foolish enough
to think that would be enough for
you.

She turns on a heel and walks toward her car.

EXT. CAMPUS - NIGHT

Norman catches up to her as a LARGE CROWD is filing out of
the concert hall next door.

NORMAN
You're overreacting.

She turns on him.

CLAIRE
Don't tell me how to react!

Norman glances around at the crowded sidewalk.

NORMAN
Keep your voice down.

CLAIRE
I will NOT.

Some of the bystanders stop to watch.

CLAIRE
(still loud)
Maybe you're right. Maybe I'm losing
my mind...

NORMAN
(looking around)
Claire, please...

Claire leans in and lowers her voice without diminishing her
intensity.

CLAIRE
...But what if I'm not? What if she
died in terror and betrayal and some
part of her can't move on while that's
unresolved. Can't you just...

Something behind him catches her eye. She trails off.

CLAIRE
Wow...

Claire walks past him toward the parking lot.

NORMAN
Claire, please...

There's a dangerous energy to her walk. People step out of
the way.

EXT. PARKING LOT - NIGHT

Claire walks past several cars until she sees the one she's
after. MR. FEUR steps out from behind the open trunk of his
old Buick.

CLAIRE
(walking up)
You!

He looks up at her.

CLAIRE
You think you're smart, don't you?
You think you got away clean. Well,
I know you killed her. You drowned
her in the bathtub and got rid of
her somewhere and I'm gonna find
her, you murdering sonofabitch.

Mr. Feur stares, dazed, through the tirade. Norman arrives
at her side.

MR. FEUR
Who?

CLAIRE
(scoffing)
Give me that shit. Your wife.

MR. FEUR
I didn't kill my wife.

NORMAN
(to Mr. Feur)
I'm sorry...

CLAIRE
(over Norman)
Then where is she?

He stares at both Spencers for a moment. Then calls past
them.

MR. FEUR
Honey...

Claire and Norman turn. A BLOND WOMAN backs out of the
passenger seat. She turns. IT'S NOT THE FACE CLAIRE HAS SEEN.
Claire looks sucker punched.

INT. DR. DRAYTON'S OFFICE - DAY

Claire sits back in the chair. She looks drained. A soft
rain taps against the windows.

CLAIRE
And his face... it seemed so gentle,
and I knew... in that second I knew
that I'd imagined the whole thing.

Dr. Drayton takes this in. She seems genuinely frightened.

CLAIRE
What's happening to me?

DR. DRAYTON
Well, that's what we're here for.

He watches her calmly, some empathy on his face.

DR. DRAYTON
Whether you imagined it or not, you
actually saw and heard things that
frightened you... that gave you reason
for concern.

CLAIRE
Yes, but...

DR. DRAYTON
Your friend saw them.

CLAIRE
Isn't there something called group
hysteria?

DR. DRAYTON
You think you influenced her?

CLAIRE
Maybe. I don't know. I just know
that when all this was happening, I
felt, some part of me felt... alive.
Like somebody needed me. And the
more I reached out to, it, the fuller
it became.

DR. DRAYTON
You're saying you willed these events
to happen?

CLAIRE
I don't know, I'm very confused right
now.

Beat.

DR. DRAYTON
Did you ever find out what it wanted?

Claire remembers.

CLAIRE
She said, "You know." That I know.

DR. DRAYTON
Do you?

CLAIRE
No.

DR. DRAYTON
What do you think?
(beat)
Guess.

Claire ponders this.

CLAIRE
I felt... pain. That she'd been hurt
by someone.
(beat)
This is great. I'm trying to intuit
the emotions of a figment of my --

DR. DRAYTON
Have you been hurt?

CLAIRE
Me? No. Well, in the accident I was
injured, but...

DR. DRAYTON
You were in an accident?

CLAIRE
Last year. I drove my car up a tree.
Nothing serious, this...
(she indicates her
scar)
...a minor concussion. But the car
looked bad. It could have been bad.
I think it scared the hell out of
Norman.

Beat.

DR. DRAYTON
How's your marriage?

Claire's eyes widen.

CLAIRE
Listen, don't hold back.

Dr. Drayton smiles kindly.

CLAIRE
Well, he's been amazing throughout
this whole thing. Patient and
caring...
(beat)
I mean, sure, he can be obsessed
with his work, and... it's a very
important time right now with all
that. But, sometimes... I mean with
everybody, right? Sometimes it's
like...

She trails off.

DR. DRAYTON
What?

CLAIRE
That he doesn't... see me, or, you
know, that I'm... that's something's
wrong... with me.

DR. DRAYTON
That can't feel good.

CLAIRE
No, it doesn't... Okay, look, I see
what you're doing here, and that's,
I'm sorry, but that's not it. My
marriage is fine. I've had some kind
of "empty-nest" episode where I saw
some things that weren't there. Let's
deal with that. I'm willing to deal
with that.
(beat)
I just don't want to go conjuring
problems where none exist.

Claire finishes her tirade. Dr. Drayton lets her settle for
a moment.

DR. DRAYTON
Fair enough. But you should know
that I'm far less concerned with
whether things you saw "existed,"
than I am with why you saw them.

She takes in the ramifications of that.

EXT. PORCH - DAY

Claire's carrying some cuttings into the house. She hears a
knock at the gate, walks over and opens it to discover...
Mrs. Feur. The real one.

MRS. FEUR
I wanted to apologize.

CLAIRE
You do?

MRS. FEUR
For scaring you like I did. When I
thought about what that must have
seemed like that day...

CLAIRE
And then you weren't there.

MRS. FEUR
Right. I'm sorry.

There's an awkward pause.

CLAIRE
Would you like some iced tea?

MRS. FEUR
Very much.

Claire leads her toward the house.

EXT. PORCH - DAY

Claire pours Mrs. Feur a glass of iced tea from a pitcher.

She's small and delicate looking with big, watery eyes.

MRS. FEUR
Your house is so beautiful.

CLAIRE
Thank you.

MRS. FEUR
And these roses. They're much prettier
up close.

She regards Mrs. Feur for a moment. She seems skittish and
shy.

CLAIRE
I... there's something I have to ask
you.

Mrs. Feur waits.

CLAIRE
That day... at the fence. You seemed
terrified. I don't think I was
imagining that.

There's a pause. Mrs. Feur looks down into her lap.

MRS. FEUR
No.

CLAIRE
Of what? What were you so afraid of?

MRS. FEUR
You're going to think I'm crazy or
something.

A tiny smile.

CLAIRE
Not this week.

She looks away for a moment, then looks back at Claire.

MRS. FEUR
Love.

CLAIRE
What?

MRS. FEUR
Have you ever felt so completely
consumed by a feeling for someone
that you couldn't breathe? That the
time together is so passionate and
consuming that you felt physical
pain when they would leave?

CLAIRE
Um... sure.

MRS. FEUR
I couldn't catch my breath. That's
not a metaphor, that's... And I
panicked. I never dreamed anyone
would hear me back there...
(beat)
I tried to leave him. Went to my
mother's in Boston. He brought my
things up and pleaded with me to
come home.

Claire is mesmerized.

MRS. FEUR
You must think I'm pathetic.

CLAIRE
No. No, I don't.

MRS. FEUR
I'm sorry that I frightened you like
that. But I was so touched by your
concern. I've been lonely here.
(beat)
Perhaps we could be friends.

Claire stares at this strange, passionate woman.

CLAIRE
I would like that.

Mrs. Feur smiles at her.

INT. VOLVO - NIGHT

Claire pulls up in front of a large NEW YORK HOTEL.

NORMAN
(on a cell phone)
...I'm pulling up, Yuri. I'll see
you for dinner.
(to Claire)
Sure you won't stay?

CLAIRE
No, it's fine. I'm fine.

NORMAN
(tempting her)
Really big bed.

She smiles and shakes her head. Norman kisses her goodbye,
then grabs his bag from the backseat.

NORMAN
Do I have everything?

CLAIRE
Yep.

NORMAN
Call ya later.

He starts to walk into the hotel.

CLAIRE (O.S.)
And you glad you married me?

He turns. She's standing next to the car.

NORMAN
What?

CLAIRE
Are you glad? I'm glad.

Norman walks over to her and cradles her chin with his hand.

NORMAN
(softly)
You know I am.

CLAIRE
Good.
(She gazes at him,
then softly)
You sat in front... I saw you there...

Norman takes his cue.

NORMAN
You were lost in the music... eyes
closed... your chest heaving...

CLAIRE
I felt you... looking through me...

NORMAN
We walked all night...

CLAIRE
You told me that I was...

He gently cups her chin in his hand.

NORMAN
(overlapping)
...that you were everything I'd ever
dreamed of.

She smiles, kisses him warmly, then gets in the car.

EXT. COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY - NIGHT

Claire stands outside Caitlin's Columbia dorm, watching young
lives in motion.

INT. DORM HALLWAY - NIGHT

Claire walks past a number of doors. Music booms out of one,
shards of a conversation out of another. Finally, she arrives
at a door that says "Fur is murder." She smiles to herself
and knocks. There's no answer.

DIFFERENT VOICE (O.S.)
She's out.

Claire turns to find an attractive YOUNG MAN standing at her
elbow.

YOUNG MAN
They're playing at CBGB's down on
Bowery. Probably won't be back for
awhile. You her mom?

CLAIRE
Yes. Who was playing?

YOUNG MAN
Bitch. Caitlin's band.

CLAIRE
(stunned)
Caitlin's band?

YOUNG MAN
Yeah. They're really good. I would
have gone, but I have a paper.
(beat)
And I'm not just saying that because
you're a mother.

Claire nods slightly.

CLAIRE
Thank you.

She walks down the hall.

INT. CBGB'S - NIGHT

Claire moves past a huge, BLACK SKINHEAD DOORMAN into an
entrance area in the dark throbbing punk club.

She looks out over the MOB OF SEETHING YOUNG PEOPLE, swaying
to a pulsing power-pop band. PUNKS and CLUB KIDS push past
her as they move into the throng. She looks up and her face
changes.

CLAIRE'S POV

A shaggy trio of musicians on the stage, pumping through a
jangly, but surprisingly melodic song. Her eyes race across
the faces of a BUTCH FEMALE DRUMMER, an emaciated
GUITARIST/SINGER and stop on the BASS PLAYER... Caitlin. She
rocks back and forth to her own hypnotic bass line, EYES
CLOSED, SWAYING TO THE MUSIC.

Claire is transfixed, her face a mix of pride and sadness.

The song ends and Caitlin's eyes open. She smiles for a
moment, then the smile fades as she spots Claire. Panicked,
Claire ducks behind a pillar.

EXT. CBGB'S - NIGHT

The last groups of YOUNG PEOPLE file out of the club. A couple
of them glance at Claire, who seems very out of place standing
on the Bowery late at night.

VOICE (O.S.)
Mom?

She turns to see Caitlin standing before her, a bass guitar
case on a strap over her shoulder. There's an awkward pause.

CLAIRE
That was very good.

CAITLIN
Mom, I'm sorry. I wanted to tell
you. But it never felt right.

CLAIRE
Why?

Caitlin stares at the ground.

CAITLIN
I didn't want to bring up memories.
I didn't want to do anything that
might make you regret your choices.

Claire winces silently.

CAITLIN
Besides, Dad would have freaked.

CLAIRE
No, he wouldn't.

CAITLIN
I think playing in a band called
"Bitch" might put a dent in the whole
"perfect family" thing.

CLAIRE
That's not true.

CAITLIN
Yes it is. Can we please not do that?
Please? Cause it is.

Claire doesn't disagree.

CLAIRE
He loves you very much. He just --

CAITLIN
I know he does.

Beat. Claire studies her surprisingly strong daughter.

CAITLIN
Are you mad at me?

CLAIRE
Listen to me. The one thing in life
that I definitely don't regret... is
the choice I made to be your mother.

They hug. For a moment, Claire's got her little girl back.

Her eyes well up.

CLAIRE
I miss you.

CAITLIN
So much.

CLAIRE
(laughing)
It got so bad your father almost had
to put me away.

CAITLIN
What do you mean?

CLAIRE
I started seeing things.

CAITLIN
A ghost?

Beat. Claire stares at her daughter.

CLAIRE
Did you?

CAITLIN
No. But once I heard...

CLAIRE
What?

CAITLIN
Someone crying. A girl.
(beat)
I thought I was crazy.

CLAIRE
(quietly)
Then we both are.

Caitlin nods.

INT. PRESIDENT'S HOUSE - NIGHT

...a large cocktail party. The house is crowded with
PROFESSORS, ADMINISTRATORS, and their SPOUSES. PRESIDENT
TEMPLETON, a frosty-haired, avuncular chap, greets them with
his WIFE, a sharp looking woman in her late fifties.

TEMPLETON
There they are.

NORMAN
You remember my wife, Claire.

MRS. TEMPLETON
(shaking hands)
Of course. You must be so proud.

CLAIRE
I am.

MRS. TEMPLETON
(to Norman)
Everyone's very anxious to shake
hands with our newest academic
celebrity.

She takes their coats. Dean Templeton leads them in.

TEMPLETON
Must've been some paper. Your father
would be very proud.

This seems to strike a nerve.

NORMAN
Uh-huh.

Claire notices this and squeezes his hand. Templeton leads
Norman into a large living room which is filled with
colleagues. Several of them turn and begin clapping. Others
follow suit.

EXT. PATIO - NIGHT

Claire stands at a small bar.

CLAIRE
(to bartender)
White wine please.

She scans the party and spots the Feurs deep in some intimate
conversation with each other. She's speaking about something
astonishing. He's rapt. Claire locates Norman in a corner
listening as some AGED ALUMNUS holds forth. He sees her and
mouths, "I'm sorry." He points to his watch and flashes five
fingers. She smiles and nods.

VOICE (O.S.)
Guess I'm not much of a medium.

She turns to see Jody.

CLAIRE
Jody...

They hug.

JODY
Are you okay?

CLAIRE
I think so

JODY
I'm sorry for leaving, but I mean,
Jesus, Claire...

CLAIRE
It's alright.

JODY
I mess around with this stuff, but I
never thought anything would happen.

Claire looks uncomfortable.

JODY
Does Norman know?

CLAIRE
Jody, she's alive.

JODY
What?

CLAIRE
Mrs. Feur. She's alive. I met her.
She's really sweet.

JODY
Then what was it?

CLAIRE
Nothing. It wasn't anything. I've
been on edge lately. Maybe since the
accident. And I'd prefer, I really
would, to just --

JODY
Something was there. You saw it.

CLAIRE
Did I?

JODY
Yes. Now I talked to Sela and there's
a guy, this Pakistani guy down in
Hartford...

CLAIRE
Hartford?

JODY
And he's the real thing. Specializes
in cases like this, like yours.

CLAIRE
No. Jody, listen to me. You have to
listen to me. This is not something
that I can do right now. Whatever it
was, it's gone. I need it to be gone
now.

JODY
But Claire --

CLAIRE
Please.

Jody recognizes her fragility.

JODY
Okay. Okay.

CLAIRE
I've got to find a bathroom. I'll
call you.

Jody nods as Claire walks off.

INT. POWDER ROOM - NIGHT

Claire stands in the spacious powder room, checking her makeup
in the mirror. Mrs. Templeton enters from the bathroom.

MRS. TEMPLETON
How're you holding up?

CLAIRE
Just fine. It's a lovely party.

The two women fix their makeup side-by-side in the mirror.

MRS. TEMPLETON
Norman was telling me the dream house
is finally finished.

CLAIRE
(nodding)
Almost.

MRS. TEMPLETON
Wonderful. It's good to see you two
doing so well.

Claire looks confused.

CLAIRE
I'm sorry?

MRS. TEMPLETON
I know how hard it can be sometimes.

Claire turns to her.

CLAIRE
Uh-huh. What can be?

MRS. TEMPLETON
Well, I don't think I've seen you
since the reception at Dean Ackerman's
last year.

Claire's still in the dark.

MRS. TEMPLETON
For the Dupont Chair.
(off Claire's look)
I swear. I'm becoming the nosy old
lady I used to run from at Amherst.

CLAIRE
No. I'm just not sure what you mean.

MRS. TEMPLETON
There was just... some tension. You
were upset. I remember being
concerned.

CLAIRE
At the party.

MRS. TEMPLETON
Toward the end. You remember?

CLAIRE
(recovering)
Ohhh yes. No, no. Just a little, you
know... We're fine.

MRS. TEMPLETON
Well, I'm glad. Pardon my
intrusiveness, but we do have to
stick together you know.

CLAIRE
Who's that?

MRS. TEMPLETON
The wives.

Beat.

CLAIRE
Right.

Mrs. Templeton leaves. Claire looks into the mirror.

CLAIRE (V.O.)
What was it about?

EXT. TEMPLETON'S HOUSE - NIGHT

Claire and Norman walk toward the car.

NORMAN
You don't remember?

CLAIRE
When she said it, there was something
familiar... but no.

He looks at her for a moment.

NORMAN
You dropped a glass.

CLAIRE
I...

NORMAN
A cheap wine glass from the caterers.
You started crying. I tried to comfort
you...

CLAIRE
(something's triggered)
In the living room...

NORMAN
You shoved me away and ran out to
the patio. I took you home.

CLAIRE
But why? I can't understand how I
could just completely --

NORMAN
It was maybe a week after the
accident. We were moving. It was a
hard time.

CLAIRE
But I don't remember.

NORMAN
Sweetheart, it was over a year ago.

CLAIRE
What's wrong with me?

He stops, takes her shoulders gently.

NORMAN
(reassuring)
Nothing. Nothing at all. It's been a
hard year. But you're better now.
And things are really looking up for
us. So let's try to enjoy that.
(gently)
Please?

She thinks for a beat.

CLAIRE
Yes. Yes. That's what I want.

She takes his hand and kisses it.

EXT. CLAIRE'S HOUSE - DAY

Claire walks up to the door. When she touches the knob she
hears... the WHISPERING. She opens the door and moves into:

INT. FOYER - DAY

The same intense whispered exchange. She glances into the
mirror and sees... SHAPES MOVING, BODIES, A FLASH OF SILVER.

She turns the corner and again... NO ONE'S THERE.

INT. NORMAN'S STUDY - DAY

She walks in and stands before:

The repaired photograph of herself and Norman... at the party
for the DUPONT CHAIR.

She takes it from the wall, stares at it for a moment, then
SMASHES IT ON THE EDGE OF THE DESK. She extricates the picture
from the broken glass. The caption reads:

"Dr. Norman Spencer being awarded the distinguished Dupont
Chair in Genetics by Dean of Sciences Torvald Ackerman."

She stares at the picture for a moment, then flips it over
and scans the stories on the back. One tells of a hotly
contested city council race, another contains details of a
large alumni donation to the university.

She notices the bottom corner of another story she hadn't
noticed before. It's only a small portion of one column, but
it seems to detail the search for A MISSING GIRL.

INT. WORK ROOM - DAY

Claire, online, logs onto a missing persons website. She
narrows her search to NEW ENGLAND. A screen pops up with a
list of names. She scrolls down the list until she finds...
FRANK, MADISON ELIZABETH.

CLAIRE
M-E-F...

Claire double clicks on it, then waits breathlessly as a
blurry cyber photo fills the screen. Slowly, higher resolution
moves down the image.

IT'S THE GHOST.

Under the photo is the legend:

"DISAPPEARED - OCTOBER 22, 1998"

Claire stares at the familiar face, then shakily hits PRINT.

LATER

Claire is staring down at the girl's face on the print out.

VOICE
(on phone)
...she was practically a townie.
Grew up in Bradford.

CLAIRE
And she was never found?

VOICE
(on phone)
Nah. She was a live wire. Had this
old Mustang Fastback. It's gone too.
Most of her friends think she's
tooling around Mexico somewhere.
Police downgraded her to a runaway.

CLAIRE
Thank you, Mr...

She glances at the byline on the back of the newspaper photo.

INSERT

"by Neil McCann"

CLAIRE
...McCann.

She hangs up.

INT. NORMAN'S STUDY - NIGHT

Norman is unpacking NOTES and CHEMICALS from his LEATHER
BAG.

Claire walks in.

CLAIRE
Remember this?

She places the printout on his desk. He takes a long look at
it.

NORMAN
Is this that girl from last year?

Claire nods.

CLAIRE
Did you know her?

Norman looks again.

NORMAN
I may have seen her on campus.

CLAIRE
Not personally.

NORMAN
No.
(beat)
I'm afraid to ask what this is about.

CLAIRE
(solemnly)
It's her. This is the woman who I've
seen.

NORMAN
The...

CLAIRE
Yes. The ghost.

Norman leaves the hung frame and walks over to a window.

CLAIRE
I thought it was Mrs. Feur, but it's
not...

NORMAN
(quietly overlapping)
Stop...

CLAIRE
...I'm positive this time...

NORMAN
(overlapping)
...Please stop...

CLAIRE
It's Madison Fra --

NORMAN
STOP IT!

Claire falls silent, Norman turns from the window.

NORMAN
(calmly)
Claire, I've tried to be there. I
know you're going through something
that I can't understand... but it's
enough.

Claire looks down.

NORMAN
Do you want to go see someone?
Together? Should we call Dr. Drayton?

She shakes her head.

NORMAN
Well then what? Claire, what? Tell
me what I can do.

Long pause. Claire looks up, then timidly holds out the
printout.

CLAIRE
It's her.

Norman's jaw tightens.

CLAIRE
I don't want to make you angry. But
she's here. And I don't know why...

He silently walks out of the room. Claire stares down at the
face in the photo.

EXT. MADISON FRANK'S HOUSE - DAY

Claire parks in front of a small, clapboard house in a
neighborhood that is decidedly less upscale than her own.
She gets out and tentatively walks up to the tiny porch.

EXT. PORCH - DAY

Claire rings the bell. A DRAWN LOOKING WOMAN in her early
fifties answers the door.

CLAIRE
Mrs. Frank?

MRS. FRANK
Yeah.

CLAIRE
I'd like to talk to you about Madison.

MRS. FRANK
You know where she is?

CLAIRE
No, I don't.

MRS. FRANK
Please leave me alone.

She starts to close the door. Claire leans forward.

CLAIRE
She's my friend.

The woman stops.

CLAIRE
Was. We were... acquainted. I've
been away for awhile. When I came
back...

She studies Claire.

MRS. FRANK
What's your name?

CLAIRE
Claire.

MRS. FRANK
She never mentioned you.

Claire doesn't know what to say to this.

MRS. FRANK
Then again, she didn't say much about
her college friends.

She gives Claire the once over.

MRS. FRANK
I'm watchin' my shows.

She motions Claire in.

INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY

Claire sits on a couch in the cramped living room. Mrs. Frank
serves up a mug of coffee. A soap plays silently on an old
19" RCA.

MRS. FRANK
Just plain old coffee. None of that
mocha nonsense.

CLAIRE
It's fine.

She sizes Claire up.

MRS. FRANK
You look a little old for a student.

CLAIRE
I'm not. We... we met at a party.

MRS. FRANK
Sounds about right. Never understood
how a girl that wild got all A's.
Sure didn't get it from me. They
wanted to put her in a special school
for the gifted when she was young.
Maddie wouldn't hear about it.

CLAIRE
She never mentioned her father.

MRS. FRANK
Well she wouldn't. He left when she
was twelve. Never spoke about him
after that.

There's a silence. Mrs. Frank stares at the TV.

MRS. FRANK
Don't need the sound. You can pretty
much tell what's happening by the
faces. Turn it up sometimes, though.
Feels like someone's here.

Claire doesn't know what to say. Mrs. Frank turns to her.

MRS. FRANK
Why are you here?

CLAIRE
I don't know.

MRS. FRANK
It's like that. Doesn't seem real.
No note. Nothing.
(beat)
Cops say she'll be back. I just wanna
know what happened.

Claire stares at this tough, tragic woman.

MRS. FRANK
Wanna see her room? Claire nods.

INT. MADISON'S ROOM - DAY

Claire enters the room. Her face freezes.

ANGLE

SEVERAL POSTERS FOR ALTERNATIVE AND METAL BANDS, side by
side with ACADEMIC PLAQUES AND AWARDS.

MRS. FRANK
Full scholarships. Princeton too.
She wanted to stay close.

CLAIRE
You must have been very proud.

She nods. Claire moves along looking at pictures. Some with
different men, others with rough looking friends. Claire
stops at a picture tucked into a mirror.

INSERT

Madison singing at a recital of some kind. She's lovely,
with striking GREEN EYES. Around her neck is a distinctive
SILVER NECKLACE, with a perfectly wrought, SILVER ROSEBUD.

MRS. FRANK
Such a pretty voice. Surprised she
didn't major in music.
(beat)
That's the last picture.

A phone rings in the hallway.

MRS. FRANK
S'cuse me.

Claire's eye is pulled past the picture into the mirror, the
reflection of something pinned to the edge of a bulletin
board. She turns and moves over to:

A SHORT BLOND BRAID. She reaches out to touch it. Claire
hears footsteps. Mrs. Frank leans back into the room.

MRS. FRANK
They're calling me in to work.

CLAIRE
I should be going anyway.

EXT. PORCH - DAY

Mrs. Frank walks Claire out.

MRS. FRANK
Y'hear anything you'll let me know?

CLAIRE
Of course.

Claire walks to her car. She turns and calls out:

CLAIRE
What was her major?

MRS. FRANK
Biology. She wanted to be a doctor.

Claire stands, frozen, as Mrs. Frank disappears into the
little house.

INT. BATHROOM - NIGHT

Claire shuts the blinds, then places the large candle on the
floor, then places the MISSING GIRL PRINTOUT at the base of
the candle. On top if it, she places THE BRAID. Then Claire
lights the candle, puts the braid on the picture, and hunches
over it, whispering intensely:

CLAIRE
I need to know the truth.

She waits a beat. Nothing.

CLAIRE
Madison, please... help me.

Nothing happens. She looks around at the seance props. She
stands and places her hands on the sink. She glances at
herself in the mirror.

CLAIRE
What am I doing?

Suddenly, her head droops over, she shudders softly. When
she looks back into the mirror, her eyes are a DEEP GREEN.

She hears the front door open downstairs.

NORMAN (O.S.)
Hello... Anybody home?!

A strange smile creeps across her face.

INT. CLAIRE'S HOUSE - NIGHT

POV - Gliding down the stairs and into...

INT. KITCHEN - NIGHT

The refrigerator door is open. Norman is leaning over. Only
his ass protrudes.

REVERSE

Norman closes the refrigerator door and sees Claire standing
before him, stripped down to a skirt and slip top. There's a
different physicality to her movements... a different rhythm
to her speech.

CLAIRE
Hello, Dr. Spencer.

Norman smiles.

NORMAN
Mrs. Spencer.

She shakes her head.

CLAIRE
Forbidden fruit...

She takes the apple...

CLAIRE
Got a problem with that...

...then takes a ravenous bite and walks out of the room.

INT. NORMAN'S STUDY - DAY

Norman finds Claire seated on his desk, her legs spread.

NORMAN
I take it your not mad at me.

CLAIRE
Wouldn't go that far.

She grabs his belt and pulls him into her, then holds the
apple to his mouth. Norman tentatively takes a bite. She
mashes it slowly into his mouth until he recoils slightly.

NORMAN
(mouth full)
Okay...

When he chews the huge bite, a glistening drop of juice runs
down his chin. Claire leans forward and licks it off.

NORMAN
What's gotten into you?

She just smiles mischievously, then starts kissing him. It
looks like she's eating his lips. Norman's getting hot. She
bites down on a lip.

NORMAN
Ow!

CLAIRE
What's the matter?

NORMAN
It's too rough.

CLAIRE
Since when?

Something about this response frightens him. Claire yanks
Norman's belt open.

He steps back, tripping over his castered desk chair. She's

on top of him in a flash, sitting astride him. She speaks in
a forceful, sexy whisper.

NORMAN
I don't like this, this...

CLAIRE
(pinning his hands
above his head)
Why don't you shut up and fuck me,
Professor.

She grinds up against him. Suddenly, something pulls her eye
to the hallway.

POV - The COAT RACK MIRROR, now from inside the study. In
it's reflection: ANOTHER CLAIRE, shorter hair, stunned
expression. Where she's standing... it's DAYTIME.

Claire leans over him until they're nose-to-nose.

CLAIRE
(tense whisper)
I think she's starting to suspect
something.

NORMAN
(through clenched
teeth)
Who?

CLAIRE
(leaning down)
Your wife...

NORMAN
STOP IT!

Norman shoves her off of him onto the floor. He stands,
breathless.

NORMAN
What the hell are you doing?!

In a moment, it's Claire again, stunned and trembling against
the wall.

CLAIRE
(to herself,
remembering)
"You know..."

NORMAN
(rattled)
What?

She looks up.

CLAIRE
I was there.

NORMAN
Claire --

CLAIRE
(flooding back to her)
I came to work in the garden and I
saw you with her... in my house.

NORMAN
Oh God...

CLAIRE
I snuck back to my car, trying to
convince myself it never happened.
And when I woke up in the hospital...
somehow it hadn't. Until now.

He just stares at her, his face anguished.

NORMAN
It was last year. We were having
troubles.

CLAIRE
So you fucked a student?!

NORMAN
(reaching for her)
That's not what I'm sayi --

CLAIRE
(pulling back)
DON'T touch me. Just get away from
me. Go!

He's frozen.

CLAIRE
I SAID GET OUT!

Norman doesn't move. He's never seen her like this.

CLAIRE
Fine...

She bolts toward the living room. He follows her.

INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

She grabs her coat.

NORMAN
(welling up)
Claire, please don't...

CLAIRE
What did you think I would do? Jesus
Christ! I gave up my life and my
music...

NORMAN
I never asked you to quit!

CLAIRE
...Oh BULLSHIT. You had to topple
perfect Daddy and that meant perfect
wife, perfect family...

He follows her as she searches for her purse and keys.

NORMAN
THAT'S NOT TRUE! You wanted to quit!
And then when you did, you hated me
for it... so you gave it all to her.

CLAIRE
Who?

NORMAN
To Caitlin!!

She wheels on him with fury.

CLAIRE
Leave her out of this!

NORMAN
And then out of nowhere, some bright
young woman found me attractive...

CLAIRE
Stop...

NORMAN
...would do anything just to be around
me. And I slipped. God help me, I
slipped.

CLAIRE
I'm not going to listen to this.

Claire goes to leave, Norman blocks her path.

NORMAN
I tried to break it off!

CLAIRE
You should have tried harder.

NORMAN
Claire...

CLAIRE
(seething)
Get out of my way.

She brushes past him.

INT. FOYER - NIGHT

He catches up, beside himself.

NORMAN
PLEASE DON'T GO!

Claire's nearly disarmed by this rare emotional outburst.
She turns at the door and looks back.

CLAIRE
You made it impossible for me to be
someone you could be in love with.

She leaves.

INT. LIVING ROOM - MORNING

Norman, rumpled and unshaven, is passed out on the couch, a
half empty whiskey bottle beside him on the coffee table. He
awakens to find Claire sitting across from him.

CLAIRE
I want you to answer one question.

He waits.

CLAIRE
Did you have anything to do with her
disappearance?

Beat.

NORMAN
Yes.

Claire goes pale.

NORMAN
She was damaged and unstable. The
more I tried to distance myself, the
more desperate she became. Finally,
she showed up at the new house...

CLAIRE
How did she know where it was?

He stares off. The reality sinks in for Claire.

CLAIRE
(softly)
Our dream house.

Norman can hardly look at her.

NORMAN
She was out of control. She said she
was going to kill herself... or you.
I never thought she'd go through
with any of it, but then she was
gone...

He trails off.

CLAIRE
She did it.

NORMAN
We don't know that for sure.

CLAIRE
Of course she did, Norman. What else
could it be?

The enormity of this hits Norman. His head drops into his
hands.

NORMAN
Oh God, what have I done? How could
I have let this into our lives?

He looks up at her, teary.

CLAIRE
I don't know.

She gets up and walks out of the room.

EXT. JODY'S STUDIO - DAY

An old industrial loft filled with finished and half-finished
oil paintings. Jody brings Claire some tea.

CLAIRE
...and everything I have, everything
I thought my life was... Christ when
I think of all the lies...

Jody looks down.

CLAIRE
What?
(beat)
Jody what?

Jody looks up, tears in her eyes.

CLAIRE
Oh God... you knew.

JODY
I was down in Adamant...

CLAIRE
Adamant?

JODY
Artsy little village down seven.
There's a guy there who sells my
work. I had just dropped off some
paintings and as I got in my car...
I saw Norman sitting at this little
cafe.

Claire waits for her to continue.

JODY
I started to walk over... but he
wasn't alone. A blond. I only caught
a glimpse. She was young.
(beat)
I should have said something right
away. But I didn't.

CLAIRE
Why?

JODY
Partly because I didn't want to hurt
you... but partly... partly because
I was relieved.

CLAIRE
Relieved?

JODY
I had just been left by Richard. I
was bitter and miserable and for
some fucked up reason, it made me
feel better that your life wasn't as
perfect as it seemed.

Claire nods.

JODY
By the time I finally got up the
nerve to tell you, Stan called from
the hospital and it was too late.

CLAIRE
Too late? Jody, it was an accident.

JODY
Alone? On a two lane road? With a
ton of Valium in your system?

Claire walks over to a window.

JODY
I got there first. Stan covered up
the pills and I had it out with
Norman. He seemed desperate not to
lose you. He promised to handle it.
And we all let it drop away.

CLAIRE
All of us.

Beat.

JODY
I'm a terrible friend.

CLAIRE
No.

Claire turns.

CLAIRE
How could I expect you to tell me
something that I wouldn't even tell
myself?

JODY
What are you going to do?

CLAIRE
I don't know.

JODY
If she was dangerous before --

CLAIRE
She could have hurt me if she wanted
to.

JODY
You don't know that.
(beat)
If it's your belief that gives her
form, then you've got to shut her
out. Somehow you have to break the
connection.

CLAIRE
No. She wanted me to know the truth.
Now that I do... I think she's at
peace.

Jody isn't as sure.

INT. KITCHEN - DAY

Claire walks in. She notices the clock on the range is dark.

She flips on a light. Nothing happens. Worried, she heads
upstairs.

INT. NORMAN AND CLAIRE'S ROOM - MORNING

Claire enters. The bed is empty. The shower is running in
the bathroom.

CLAIRE
Norman?

INT. BATHROOM - MORNING

ANGLE - CLAIRE... her face a mask of terror.

CLAIRE
Oh God...

CLAIRE'S POV

The BATHTUB, with the shower curtain drawn around it, the
water blasting. Norman's limp hand pokes through the curtain.
AN ELECTRIC CORD leads from the mirror socket into the tub.

Claire races over and rips the plug from the wall. She tears
the SHOWER CURTAIN AWAY to find A BLUISH NORMAN lying,
unconscious in the tub.

CLAIRE
No, no. Please no...

She hugs her face to his chest until she picks up a heartbeat.

CLAIRE
Norman!! Wake up! Please!

Claire shakes him to no effect.

CLAIRE
Oh God... NORMAN!

She slaps him on the face... once, then twice. He suddenly
sucks in a gulp of air, begins struggling and dazedly returns
to life.

CLAIRE
It's me... it's me...

Sobbing, she shuts off the squeaky faucets and struggles to
pull him upright. She discovered HER BLOWDRYER in the tub
and hurls it across the room.

INT. BEDROOM - DAY

Claire sits beside Norman on the bed as two E.M.T.'s, an OLD
GUY and a HEAVY WOMAN pack up. Stan's on the phone, Jody off
to one side.

HEAVY WOMAN
Vitals are good. I'd take it easy
for a couple of days.

NORMAN
Thanks.

The E.M.T.'s leave as Stan hangs up.

STAN
They'll take you for a CAT scan
tomorrow if you're feeling dizzy at
all.

NORMAN
That won't be necessary.

He glances at Claire as he walks Stan out.

NORMAN
Not unless there's a miracle drug
for clumsiness.

They leave.

CLAIRE
Jody, she tried to kill him.

JODY
I know.

CLAIRE
I can't believe this is happening.

JODY
We need help. Please let me call the
medium.

CLAIRE
That could take days. I need to do
something now. Don't you see? She
wants us dead.

Jody thinks for a moment.

JODY
Alight, alright. Stay calm. You opened
this door. There's got to be a way
that you can close it.

CLAIRE
Like what?

JODY
I have an idea. But, I mean, I'm
just making this up...

CLAIRE
What is it?

CUT TO:

MADISON'S SMILING FACE

EXT. DOCK - DAY

Claire's staring down at the PRINTOUT. She's kneeling at the
edge of the dock. From her pocket she produces THE BLOND
BRAID and a piece of TWINE. She wraps the braid up in the
printout with a rock and secures it with the twine.

CLAIRE
Sorry. Better or worse, he's mine.

She tosses the little parcel into the dark water. Bubbles
stream up. In the bubbles, Claire sees... THE PALE SHAPE,
which slowly becomes THE DROWNED GIRL, staring up from beneath
the dark water.

Claire wants to pull away, but she's transfixed. Madison
reaches up toward the surface. As the bubble diminish, she
seems to be FADING AWAY. When she's gone, Claire reaches out
toward the water. When her finger touches the surface...

WHOOSH! She's sucked down into the water.

INT. UPSTAIRS SITTING ROOM - DAY

Norman glances out of the window in time to see a splash off
the dock. He races out of the room.

EXT. UNDERWATER - DAY

Claire struggles furiously as the unseen attacker drags her
deeper into the murky depths.

EXT. DOCK - DAY

Norman sprints toward the dock.

EXT. UNDERWATER - DAY

As he oxygen begins to run out, Claire screams desperately
as her hand plunges into the muddy bottom.

Suddenly, she's released. She yanks her hand free, the silt
swirls revealing... a COPPER COLORED GLINT in the mud.

NORMAN'S HAND grasps Claire's ankle and pulls her upwards.

EXT. DOCK - DAY

Norman helps Claire, coughing, onto the dock. They hold each
other.

NORMAN
Are you okay?

She nods, catching her breath.

NORMAN
We have to get out of here.

CLAIRE
It's alright.

NORMAN
Can't you see, she's trying to kill
us.

CLAIRE
She's gone.

NORMAN
What?

CLAIRE
She can't be here without me.

NORMAN
How can you be sure?

CLAIRE
I don't know, but I am. She was there
and then she was gone. I felt it.

NORMAN
Claire...

She stares into the still water.

CLAIRE
It's over.

INT. BEDROOM - NIGHT

Claire in bed with a blanket wrapped around her. Norman walks
in with some steaming mulled cider. He stokes the blazing
fire. He sits on the edge of the bed.

NORMAN
I know it's going to take awhile
before things are back... until
they're better than before. But you've
given us a chance to make a fresh
start. And I'm going to spend the
rest of my life making you glad that
you did.

The gaze at each other. Tentatively, she places a hand on
his.

EXT. GARDEN - DAY

Claire, dressed in a warm sweater, finishes wrapping her
rosebushes for the winter. She picks up a basket of clipped
flowers and heads inside.

EXT. PORCH - DAY

She turns the doorknob and listens for the whispering. All
is quiet.

INT. FOYER - DAY

She looks into the mirror and sees only the study and the
lake behind it.

INT. NORMAN'S STUDY - DAY

Claire places the roses in a vase on Norman's desk, and in
doing so, accidentally knocks it over.

With a towel she mops up the water which has dripped onto
the wooden floor. The stream has flowed over to the knot and
dripped into the crack. Claire stares down at THE STRANGE
COPPER COIN.

She grabs a letter opener from Norman's desk and pries the
coin out. It's actually a SMALL BRASS KEY, the head of which
is THREE INTERLOCKING CIRCLES. She stares at it for a moment,
then places it in her pocket.

EXT. SAILBOAT - DUSK

Claire stands toward the bow watching the sunset. The leaves
on the surrounding hills are stunning. Norman appears beside
her.

NORMAN
Last sail of the year.

She gazes out.

CLAIRE
The leaves...

NORMAN
Incredible. We should take a drive
before they're gone. Spend the night
at some cozy little bed and breakfast.

CLAIRE
Look for antiques...

NORMAN
Yep. There's some great places nearby.

CLAIRE
(a reflex)
Adamant.

NORMAN
What?

CLAIRE
Little village down seven. Supposed
to be charming.

NORMAN
Huh.

CLAIRE
Do you know it?

NORMAN
Don't think so.

CLAIRE
Maybe we can stop there for lunch.

He wraps an arm around her.

NORMAN
Whatever you'd like.

She leans against him, staring out.

EXT. DRIVEWAY - DAY

Jody and Claire return from a walk. Norman has the boat on
the trailer and is securing a tarp over it. They stop under
a tree.

CLAIRE
But he acted like he'd never heard
of it.

JODY
Did he say that?

CLAIRE
Jody he was lying.

JODY
What if he was? Do you think he wanted
to bring that up again just when
you're trying to make a new start?

CLAIRE
I guess not.

JODY
He's trying to put it behind him,
Claire. You should too.

Norman smiles and waves. They wave back as they arrive at
the Karman-Ghia.

JODY
You've got a beautiful life. And
even with this, it's always been
clear that he loves you.
(beat)
I've come to think that's all that
really matters.

CLAIRE
I don't know...

JODY
Trust me, Claire. You hear
something... change the subject. You
find something... get rid of it,
throw it in the lake.
(beat)
You know what happened. The rest is
only details. And no one's ever glad
they got a hold of those. If you
want to put this back together...
just let it go.

Jody drives off. Claire walks over to Norman. She hugs him
tightly.

NORMAN
What's that for?

CLAIRE
Nothing.

NORMAN
I'm cooking you dinner.

CLAIRE
You don't have to do that.

NORMAN
I know.

CLAIRE
Fine. I'll do the shopping.

They kiss. She heads to the Volvo.

INT. VOLVO - DAY

Claire is approaching a country market. She spots a little
sign with an arrow:

ADAMANT - 11 mi.

She hesitates for a moment, then take the turn.

EXT. ADAMANT - DAY

Claire stands on a street in the quaint little village. She
looks around, spots a little cafe with outdoor tables. A
friendly old HIPPIE WOMAN walks out of a store. She watches
Claire gazing around.

HIPPIE WOMAN
What are you looking for?

CLAIRE
I don't really know.

HIPPIE WOMAN
Know what you mean.

She ambles off across the street. Claire watches her go.

Then notices a sign hung out above a little shop. THREE
INTERLOCKED CIRCLES. She walks toward it.

EXT. SHOP - DAY

Claire stands in front of the store window. A sign in the
window identifies it as "The Sleeping Dog -- Hand wrought
jewelry and gifts." Claire tries to open the door, but sees
a closed sign.

She steps back out to the window and looks in. On display
are a selection of handcrafted jewelry and curios.

Suddenly her eye stops on a small silver bracelet with an
intricate ROSEBUD.

Her eye travels up and behind it to the back of the display
where she spots, a small ORNATE COPPER CHEST. Protruding
from its lock... THE INTERLOCKED CIRCLES. Claire looks like
she's been punched.

INT. NORMAN AND CLAIRE'S ROOM - NIGHT

Claire glances over at the soundly sleeping Norman. She
gingerly slides out of bed.

INT. BASEMENT - NIGHT

Claire sits among the boxes, leafing through the photo album,
tracking the years of their life. Her hands tremble. Finally
she reaches the picture of their wedding, reaches behind the
photo and produces... THE KEY.

EXT. DOCK - NIGHT

Claire in her nightgown and a jacket, walks slowly down the
dock. An expensive looking flashlight illuminates her path.

She stops and stares out at the moonlit lake.

She holds out a fist. Her fingers unfold and in her palm
lies THE KEY. She holds the key out over the water and stands
there, frozen. The lighthouse beam sweeps past her once...
then again.

Claire pulls her hand back and holds the key to her chest,
then carefully places it on the dock. She very deliberately
takes off her jacket and slippers, steps to the edge of the
dock, shines the flashlight on the dark water... then steps
off the dock.

CUT TO:

INT. BEDROOM - NIGHT

AN ANGUISHED CRY from downstairs. Norman bolts upright in
bed.

INT. NORMAN'S STUDY - NIGHT

Norman walks through the darkened house into the moonlit
room. He pulls up short when he sees the strongbox sitting
closed on his desk. He looks around, sees the room is empty
and walks over to it.

The mud and silt has been wiped from the top, on which is
engraved: To N.C.S. with love always, M.E.F. He pulls open
the lid and tentatively peers inside.

THE LIGHTS SWITCH ON.

Claire stands in the doorway, holding out the SILVER ROSEBUD
NECKLACE.

CLAIRE
Looking for this?

Norman stares at her dumbly.

CLAIRE
She's out there isn't she? She's in
the lake.

NORMAN
Okay. Don't... you don't understand
what this is.

CLAIRE
Don't I, Norman? YOU KEPT THE FUCKING
NECKLACE. Of a woman you killed!

NORMAN
(nearly hysterical)
I did NOT! I did not kill anyone.
Jesus. Claire, listen to me. I walked
in and she was lying there dead. I
swear to you. On my life! She took
pills and she killed herself in our
house to destroy me! To destroy us!
If I hadn't stopped by here before
school, the painters would have --

CLAIRE
I don't believe you.

NORMAN
IT'S TRUE. That's... you have to
believe me! Oh God, I'm telling you
the truth!
(beat, fighting tears)
I did what I had to, Claire. She was
gone. There was nothing I could do
for her. I did... I put her in the
lake. I rolled the car in... and I
watched it sink.
(beat)
And I've lived with that image ever
since.
(beat)
I couldn't just stand there while
everything -- my career, us,
everything, just washed away. Don't
you see, Claire? She's doing this!
This is exactly what she wants you
to think!

Claire's lip is quivering with confusion.

CLAIRE
I don't know what's true anymore.
(beat)
But that girl must be brought up.
Now do you want to call the police?
Or should I?

Norman stares at the phone. He's a wreck.

NORMAN
Fine. I can't live with it anymore.

He takes the phone, punches in three numbers, waits.

NORMAN
This is Dr. Norman Spencer. No, it's
not an emergency.

He looks at Claire.

NORMAN
I have some information about a
missing girl, Madison Frank... Yes.
Could you send an officer? Fifteen
Willoughby, about a mile before the
bridge... Thank you.

He hangs up. Long silence. They look at each other.

NORMAN
You did the right thing.
(beat)
I'm going to get cleaned up.

He walks out. Claire walks over and stands before the box.

INT. BEDROOM - NIGHT

Claire walks into the bedroom. The shower can be heard through
the bathroom door, which is partially ajar. Steam drifts out
through the crack.

She stands in her dressing room and catches sight of her
weary, distraught countenance in the mirror. She glances
down.

CLAIRE'S POV

The necklace still in her hand.

She looks up again into the mirror. Her face goes strangely
blank and, almost mechanically, she clasps the necklace onto
her neck.

Suddenly, she stares over at the CORDLESS PHONE lying on the
bed for a long moment. She walks over, picks up the phone
and looks at it.

CLAIRE'S POV

The redial button.

She stares at the bathroom door, then hits the button. Two
rings, then:

VOICE
(on phone)
Directory assistance...

Claire's eyes widen in terror. She clicks off the phone,
and, taking it with her, starts moving toward the door to
the hall. She keeps a steady eye trained on the bathroom.
She quietly pulls open the hallway door.

Suddenly, A HAND WITH A WASHCLOTH IS THRUST OVER HER FACE.

Claire shoves Norman's hand away and runs past him down the
hall.

INT. HALLWAY - NIGHT

She's nearly at the top of the stairs when her body starts
to falter. She tumbles over, dropping the phone, which
clatters down the stairs before her.

Claire is pulling herself down the stairs, moaning in terror.

Norman can be seen calmly following her, waiting for the
Halothane to take its full effect. Finally, she freezes.

Norman picks up the phone and stands over her.

NORMAN
God, how did we come to this?

He picks her gently up in his arms and starts carrying her
slowly up the stairs.

NORMAN
The ghost stuff, that was impressive.

CLAIRE'S POV

Ceiling, shapes...

NORMAN
I figure you saw her that day in the
house and just gradually intuited
the whole damn thing. That would be
pretty astonishing. A passive-
aggressive masterpiece.

INT. BATHROOM - NIGHT

And into the bathroom.

NORMAN
Wasn't until the shower that I
realized you actually believed it.
Nearly froze to death waiting for
you. Thought the circuit breaker
would kick back over and I'd be toast.

...then she's lowered into the tub.

NORMAN
The crazy thing is... I have never
for one moment stopped loving you.

He actually wipes a tear from his eye. He kisses her lips.

We can feel her revulsion. His face over her.

NORMAN
Don't worry about Caitlin. I'm sure
in some tragic way this'll bring us
closer together.

He turns on the faucets, then moves out of her line of vision.
Sound of a number being dialed.

NORMAN (O.S.)
Hey, it's Norman. Listen, we had a
huge blowout, so I'm going down to
sleep at the lab. I guess you're
out, but... maybe... if you wouldn't
mind stopping by to check on her in
the morning?

She glances down and sees on the edge of the tub... a
prescription bottle of VALIUM with her name on the label.
Her eyes go wide.

NORMAN (O.S.)
It's just... Jody, it's bad. I've
never seen her like this...
(he trails off, choking
up)
I don't really know what to do
anymore.

Norman, lit periodically by the sweep of the light house
beacon, squats with the phone and gazes down at her.

NORMAN
If anything ever happened to her,
I'd...
(beat)
Anyway, thanks.

Claire, mute, glances frantically around. One of her fingers
begins to flutter.

NORMAN
(tearfully)
I'm so sorry.

The tub is rapidly filling. He checks his watch, then reaches
for the Valium. As much from will as the drug beginning to
fade, Claire lets out a garbled cry.

CLAIRE
(sloppy, guttural)
Mmmuh...

NORMAN
Shhhh.

CLAIRE
(slurry)
Mauduh...

Norman stops.

NORMAN
What?

CLAIRE
MADISON!

Norman seems unnerved that she's still clinging to her belief
in the ghost.

NORMAN
That's a little much, don't you think?

He sees the necklace on her neck.

NORMAN
Oops. Can't have that.

He puts down the bottle of Valium, then reaches around
Claire's neck to remove the necklace. When his hands close
on the clasp, his face suddenly goes slack.

NORMAN'S POV

His arms around MADISON'S BEAUTIFUL CORPSE.

Norman explodes backwards, slamming his head into the BRASS
SHOWER NOZZLE. He staggers out of the bathroom before
collapsing with a thud. The water finally rises above Claire's
nostrils.

Claire somehow manages to work a toe into the plug chain and
yank it free. The water slowly descends.

When it seems that her lungs must burst, her mouth finally
clears the descending water. She chokes in great gulps of
air.

The drug is finally wearing off. Claire sits up. Norman's
unconscious feet can be seen outside of the doorway. She
turns off the water and stands unsteadily.

She looks around for the phone and finally spots the little
antenna protruding from under Norman. She delicately pulls
the phone out of his back pocket, only to discover that it's
been broken by his fall. She drops it and walks quietly out
of the room.

INT. STAIRWAY - NIGHT

Claire stumbles as fast as she can down the stairs.

INT. FOYER - NIGHT

She fumbles for some KEYS in a basket by the door, then looks
at the cell phone's recharging cradle. It's empty.

She spots Norman's coat hanging on the coat rack and rifles
through the pockets. She finds the phone, and flips it open
to see if it's working. A drop of something splats on the
phone. Then another. It's blood.

She looks up and sees Norman, his forehead gashed, glaring
down from the landing.

She reaches for the door knob, but the keys and cell phone
in her hand make it difficult to open. Norman hurls himself
over the banister. THUD!

A BLOODY HAND yanks her backwards. Claire slams into the
corner by the armoire. Norman advances on her. At the last
moment, she throws her shoulder into the armoire which tumbles
over on Norman.

EXT. DRIVEWAY - NIGHT

Claire races over to the Volvo, which is blocked by NORMAN'S
PICKUP, the dark hulk of THE SAILBOAT on a trailer behind
it.

She starts to get into the pickup, then remembers to look in
the bed... nobody there.

INT. PICKUP - NIGHT

The truck is cold and doesn't want to turn over. She stares
at the door for signs of Norman.

CLAIRE
Come on... come on...

...and VROOM, the truck roars to life. Claire spews gravel
as she barrels the cumbersome rig out of the driveway,
constantly watching the door.

When she veers to the right out of the driveway, she looks
into the rear view mirror. The boat momentarily blocks the
open door, then clears. Still nothing.

EXT. DIRT ROAD - NIGHT

Claire wheels the truck and trailer out onto a two-lane road.

INT. PICKUP - NIGHT

Shivering with cold and adrenaline, she tries to work the
ancient heater. She turns onto THE BRIDGE.

EXT. BRIDGE - NIGHT

The PICKUP and BOAT race across the deserted bridge.

INT. PICKUP - NIGHT

ANGLE

Claire through the windshield. Her face striped by the
reflection of the bridge lights which whip one-by-one across
the windshield. She flips open the cell phone and punches in
911. It blinks: "NO SERVICE."

CLAIRE
Shit.

She glances into the rear view mirror.

CLAIRE'S POV

A stern section of the boat's COVERING TARP untied, flapping
in the breeze.

Claire desperately punches the "talk" button again... "NO
SERVICE." She's past the center of the bridge. She looks
again: "ROAM." Claire punches the talk button again.

SMASH!

A TRAILER CRANK punches through the window. Norman's arm
follows, coiling like a python around Claire's neck, his
grim visage pressed against the glass.

She squashes down the accelerator.

EXT. BRIDGE - NIGHT

The trailer starts to weave from side to side, swerving the
pickup. Claire chokes, then blacks out.

EXT. BRIDGE - NIGHT

The Pickup and trailer smash through the railing, barreling
over bumpy terrain straight toward the BOAT RAMP.

The truck hits the water at fifty and Norman is hurtled
through the rear window and into the passenger side dashboard.

INT. PICKUP - MOMENTS LATER

Claire is unconscious in the driver's seat, a trickle of
blood runs from her nose. Norman stirs briefly as Claire
groggily comes to. She hears the hissing of the smashed
radiator, then sees Norman, a shattered bloody mess on the
floor of the cab.

She leans over to see if he's dead, hears a squeak and
realizes that the pickup, with the BATTERED SAILBOAT AND
TRAILER miraculously still attached, is rolling deeper into
the water.

Before she can get the door open, the truck is half submerged.
She frantically manages to lower her window halfway and starts
to pull herself out.

Her ribs have just cleared the glass when a bloody fist locks
onto her ankle and yanks her inside. Norman pulls her down
until they're face to face.

CLAIRE
Norman... NO...

She yanks the emergency brake, but it's too late... the
submerged wheels lock and slide slowly down the mossy ramp.

The truck is nearly submerged.

CLAIRE
(desperately)
Norman, please...

The water is up to the windows. Norman shakes his head slowly
as he blinks away blood from his eyes.

CLAIRE
Think of Caitlin...

Water sprays in through the hole in the rear window and
momentarily blinds Norman. Claire jerks free and scrambles
out of the driver's side window as the truck sinks.

Just as she's free of the window, she jerks to a stop. She
looks down and sees Norman, half out of the window, one hand
clamped onto her ankle.

There is a wrenching metallic creak. The truck lurches
downward... then silence. IT DOESN'T SINK. The boat buoys it
like a fishing cork as it drifts out into the lake.

The headlights pierce the darkness of the steep underwater
drop off. Claire tries to swim free, but Norman's not letting
go.

Suddenly metal snaps and the truck pops free of the trailer.

It hurtles downwards and the still-glowing headlights
reveal...

MADISON'S SUBMERGED MUSTANG

SMASH!

When the front of the pickup lands on the hood of the car,
the Mustang's windshield shatters. A PALE SHAPE FLOATS UPWARD.

Norman is suddenly entangled by something. He tries to brush
it free but comes face-to-face with MADISON'S GHASTLY,
DECOMPOSED FACE. The last of his air bellows out of him in a
scream as he releases Claire's ankle.

His dead staring face separates from Madison's as the truck
slowly tilts back and sinks to the bottom.

EXT. LAKE - DAWN

Claire breaks the surface with a huge intake of air.

CUT TO:

UNDERWATER - DAWN

The sound of a furious cello solo.

COLD STARING EYES

Norman, half out of the truck, arms floating.

Follow his eyes to THE PALE CORPSE, drifting above, tethered
to the Mustang by an old seat belt around her ankle.

Move through the murky water toward the corpse's clothed
back. As she twists into view...

MORPHS INTO: MADISON'S PALE BEAUTIFUL FACE... at peace.

Camera drifts, moves upward and breaks the surface as the
distant lights of EMERGENCY VEHICLES approach.

CUT TO:

FINGERS

...filled with moist earth. A hand tosses the clump of dirt
onto...

EXT. CEMETERY - DAY

A CASKET

Widen to reveal Claire, dressed in black, stepping away from
the grave. A tiny arm snakes around her waist. She glances
down to see Caitlin, her eyes shining, clasping her mother
tightly. Claire takes a last look into the grave.

CLAIRE
Rest in peace.

THE GRAVESTONE - MADISON ELIZABETH FRANK

Mother and daughter turn and step back. Next to them, also
in black, is MRS. FRANK.

CUT TO:

FINGERS

Racing across the neck of a cello. The solo continues and
now reaches the difficult transition that had stumped Claire
before.

WIDEN TO REVEAL

INT. A LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

Claire, her hair short and sexy, eyes tightly shut, brow
beaded with sweat. The piece builds to a dark, passionate
crescendo.

Her eyes remain shut for a moment, then flutter open.

CLAIRE'S POV

A New York apartment, the glimmering skyline visible through
a large window. Cooper gazes up attentively.

Claire sips a glass of wine, her face unsmiling, but serene.

FADE OUT.

THE END

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