Digital Ischemia

12/08/2012

Hypothesis

Filed under: What You Wish For-S — Teepwriter @ 15:57

INT. BENACHAR HOUSE KITCHEN – DAY

Polly tends pans on the stove.  Finn and Jade wriggle and giggle in high chairs.  Will bursts in from the hall.

WILL
And how is my Jane Austen Science Fiction family today?

Polly starts.  Finn and Jade squawk.

POLLY
Hello!

WILL
Which world were you in?!

Polly disparages Will.  He shakes his head, smirking.  She sets a pan lid, faces him, inhales, opens her mouth.

SFX: shuffle and thuds of boots dropping.

Will snaps his head to the back doorway.  Innes enters, sights Will, bows.

POLLY
Will, this is Innes.

Polly is entranced.  Finn and Jade stare, silent.  Will perfunctorily holds out his hand to shake.

POLLY (CONT’D)
You bow; you shake hands.  This is only the beginning.

Will and Innes eye each other up, unflinching.

INNES
I ken how ye must think I treated Polly.  I hope I can persuade ye I did nae ken.  I would nae ha’e let her do this hersel’.

WILL
She is very independent.

DISSOLVE TO:

Finn and Jade are gone.  Polly and Will puzzle at each other.  Innes stares out at the darkening hill.

INNES
For how lang am I safe here?

POLLY
Twenty-four hours is the longest I stayed in your time.

INNES
But I return tae the exact time I left?

POLLY
If it’s the same for you as for me.  It’s like a loop in time.

WILL
One way to find out.

INNES
Go back?  Ootside?

WILL
I was thinking of the parish records, if they change…  Fairly coarse though.

POLLY
There’s an anecdotal account of your personality being changed after your injury, due to brain damage.  That’s not true.

INNES
If it was written while ye were away fae me then it is right enough.  I was no’ pleasant.

Will stares at Innes, his antagonism partly humbled.

WILL
You’re right.  If we’re – you’re – changing things, we won’t remember… unless we’re existing in parallel…

Innes is mystified.

POLLY
Will thinks for a living.

WILL
Experiment: you both leave now, together.  Polly should join you, your time, a day or so later.  She will return to exactly this moment.  You should rejoin us, lagging again.

POLLY
You’re awfully calm for playing with us!

WILL
It’s merely a hypothesis.  Just as plausible: we’re high on something emanating from the hill.

Polly sneers, disparaging Will.  Innes is tense.

POLLY
The power’s on.

WILL
Well spotted.

Polly inhales, stands.

INT. BENACHAR HOUSE HALL – EVENING – CONTINUOUS ACTION

Light on.  Polly goads Will and the universe.  He lounges against a wall.  Innes lurks, eyes flitting about.  She grabs the front door handle, vacillates.

WILL
What?

POLLY
Suddenly remembered I have children.

WILL
You’re stepping out of the house, that’s all.

Polly tenses, slides a foot over the threshold.  Innes bolts past her.  Will stiffens.  Innes paces about outside, swings out his arms, palms up.  Polly skips to him.  They giggle, dance in catharsis.  Will observes.

Innes calms himself, steers Polly to the doorway.

INNES
Your thought?

WILL
You’re both still alive and you’re both still here.

Polly is incredulous.  Will shrugs.

WILL (CONT’D)
Altered perception hypothesis stands.

POLLY
Except that Innes was last going about in Eighteen Sixty-four.

WILL
I don’t know that.

POLLY
He’s not acting!  Or deranged!  If you could see the town…

WILL
If.

POLLY
I didn’t invent him!

Will flings a disenchanted gesture at the doorway.  Polly has a frustrated frisson.  Innes emerges from shadow.

INNES
May we go on thinking that I can return wi’ the next storm?

Polly wraps her arms around Innes.

POLLY
Of course.  We’re forgetting the nature of your situation.

Will pats the wall, heads out.

EXT. BENACHAR HILL TRACK – NIGHT

Will strides alone in moonlight, halts, wide-eyed.

POLLY (V.O.)
I didn’t invent him!

WILL
Is your mind so focused that you manifested a person?!

Will grasps his head, whirls.

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