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FADE IN

INT. SWIMMING POOL, UNDERWATER DEEP END — DAY

A common house brick quietly drops to the tiled floor of a swimming pool. As it lands, we move towards it. We hear a man’s voice.

LAWRENCE V/O
I was even taught to rescue bricks. I mean, I was nine then — no idea if rescuing bricks was high on life’s agenda. I’m forty-one now. I feel I’m doing the same thing — rescuing bricks. Sexy bricks — bricks that know how to dress — how to keep their men close to hand — but bricks all the same.

(a beat)

Bricks sink.

CUT TO a BOY diving down from the brick’s ‘POV’.

LAWRENCE
That reddish chlorine blurred smudge — it beckons you and all for some tatty certificate. I’ve still got mine somewhere.

A small hand snatches up the brick. We tilt lazily up to see an out of focus form push towards the surface.

LAWRENCE
So I rescued the brick. Again and again and again.

INT. SWIMMING POOL, TOPSIDE, DAY

The nine year old LAWRENCE CURTIS and his brick pierce the surface of the deep end. Shivering, Lawrence climbs out and returns the brick to his tweeded TEACHER.

LAWRENCE V/O
And how come no one’s ever grateful I rescued the brick? I mean it’s not as if they expected me to resuscitate it.

The teacher throws the brick back in to the deep end.

LAWRENCE V/O
I mean there’d be no point. They keep drowning the bastard.

EXT. SWIMMING BATHS — DAY

Lawrence, shivering in his Parka on a Winter’s day, stands outside a Victorian public baths.

LAWRENCE V/O
And you know what? I’m STILL shivering.

INT. LAWRENCE’S BEDROOM — NIGHT

Forty-one year old Lawrence is not shivering. He is quaking, losing control. Bunched up on his bed, Lawrence blocks his ears. Muffled we hear another voice;

EVELYN V/O
(hardly discernable, a mouthful of something)
Big hero. Taking care of little me. My white knight.
(pleading)
You think I have this under control?

Lawrence unlocks himself, moves forward off the bed. We see curtains blowing in from a balcony beyond him.

INT. LAWRENCE’S BATHROOM NIGHT

EVELYN — pretty, petite, suicidal — is swallowing fistfuls of Valium. Lawrence resumes his voice over.

LAWRENCE V/O
That’s Evelyn. And with her I had touched a part of myself that I was genuinely shocked to discover – the will to end my suffering — by any means.

EVELYN
You’re so… you’re so wrong about yourself. You can’t…

The bathroom door hinges snap and the door falls diagonally. Lawrence stands there shaking. He is white – whiter than white – a mouth, lips flat lined.

LAWRENCE
(with deadly seriousness)
Stop. Now.

Evelyn spits out a mouthful of Valium in surprise at a command.

EVELYN
You’re ordering me?

Evelyn salutes Lawrence – sarcasm. It cuts – as do we -to:

INT. LAWRENCE’S BATHROOM — NIGHT — FLASHBACK

SNAP — the sound of rain, Lawrence in a dripping jacket on the landing, Evelyn on her knees picking up dropped Valium – ANOTHER time, SAME situation. NOTE: A jolting visual effect needed to indicate a change in the time line.

LAWRENCE
Oh God. Evelyn, for God’s sake. What are you doing?

EVELYN
(choked sobs)
You bastard, get away from me!

LAWRENCE V/O
First time, I was all over her. So contrite, so mortified I might be the reason for anyone’s unhappiness. I bought all that shit about cries for help. After all, I rescue people. Here’s my card. Lawrence Curtis – Professional Idiot.

EXT. LAWRENCE’S BATHROOM — NIGHT

SNAP – no rain sound – we are back to Lawrence in the present. Evelyn looks up at him – hateful.

LAWRENCE
Stop this. Now.

Evelyn smiles, pills cascade from hand and mouth. Lawrence lunges and shoulders her fireman style.

INT. LAWRENCE’S LANDING/STAIRCASE NIGHT

As Lawrence carries Evelyn downstairs, pills tap on each wooden stair. They fall in sync with Lawrence’s footsteps — which are somewhat urgent.

EVELYN
I feel bad.

LAWRENCE
Can you remember what started it this time?

INT. LAWRENCE’S LIVING ROOM — NIGHT

Lawrence places Evelyn on the sofa — she sags. Lawrence makes his way through to the kitchen.

INT. LAWRENCE’S KITCHEN — NIGHT — FLASHBACK

SNAP – we’re back on the rainy night. Wet-jacket Lawrence is in a panic making a warm salty water cocktail. And a huge urgent mess. Evelyn sits sagged on a kitchen chair.

INT. LAWRENCE’S KITCHEN — NIGHT

Back to the present and the preparation of the drink is more studied – almost clinical. He finishes and leaves the kitchen.

INT. LAWRENCE’S LIVING ROOM — NIGHT

Lawrence has a cloudy glass in his hand.

EVELYN
That for me?

LAWRENCE
(horribly calm)
Evelyn, I mean it. Can you remember what started this one?

He sits out of Evelyn’s reach.

LAWRENCE (cont’d)
How many did you actually swallow?

EVELYN
What are you doing?

LAWRENCE
How many?

EVELYN
(uneasy)
Six — maybe seven

LAWRENCE
Bricks don’t die, Evelyn.

EVELYN
What?

Evelyn stands up and immediately sits again, woozy. She kneels on the floor and looks at Lawrence — hazy, unfocused.

EVELYN (cont’d)
What are you doing?

LAWRENCE
Rescuing you. Like I always do. Mr. Dependable. Climb aboard my steed fair maiden but there’s a small proviso. You must remember one thing.

EVELYN
How this started? You said something stupid.
(nervous)
Give me the glass.

LAWRENCE
No. The thing you must remember is that…
(explosive…)
ONCE…
(back to normal)
…you have been rescued…

EVELYN
What?
(urgent)
GIVE ME THE GLASS!

LAWRENCE
(cold)
Once you have been rescued, you must then GET OFF THE FUCKING HORSE.

Lawrence moves forward and clamps Evelyn’s face to the glass of salt water. She drinks noisily. As soon as it is finished he swiftly carries her upstairs.

INT. LAWRENCE’S STAIRCASE/LANDING — NIGHT — FLASHBACK

Wet-jacket Lawrence carries Evelyn upstairs. In a series of short passage of time dissolves, we see Lawrence, with great concern, placing her in bed and sitting next to her. He places his hand lightly on her stomach making sure she is still breathing.

INT. LAWRENCE’S BATHROOM NIGHT

Back to the present — Lawrence indifferent. Evelyn’s back arches. The unpleasant sound of stomach contents u-bend bound. Stay on Lawrence.

INT. SWIMMING BATHS DAY

The young boy Lawrence surfaces with the brick. The tweeded teacher stares down at him taking the brick.

TEACHER
Well done, Curtis. You’ll make this brick a fine wife one day.

Lawrence — not amused. The teacher throws the brick back in.

INT. LAWRENCE’S LANDING/STAIRCASE NIGHT

Lawrence goes to leave again but seems to be forced against his will to move forward to the jamb of the bathroom.

LAWRENCE
Finished?

EVELYN
Finished. I want to sleep. I want you to apologize but first I want to sleep.

LAWRENCE
(concise and over enthusiastic)
Then let your Sir Launcelot sweep fair Guinevere off to her place of majesterial repose.

Evelyn looks at him, unsure. Lawrence enters the bathroom and gathers Evelyn up. He turns towards the bedroom.

INT. LAWRENCE’S BEDROOM NIGHT

With Evelyn in his arms, Lawrence’s delivery is off hand, desultory.

LAWRENCE (cont’d)
You know what I got for all my trouble?

EVELYN
What trouble?

LAWRENCE
Effort, stuff done for others. Taking myself for granted. Taking care of number one without any idea how to take care of myself… I needed a me, a me to take care of me.

Lawrence stands still. Big Close Up. SNAP — the same segue effect. We are seeing a fantasy future. Lawrence passes by the bed and moves towards the balcony.

EVELYN
What? You want a medal?
(noticing the balcony)
Hey. It’s cold. I need my beauty sleep.

LAWRENCE
Do you know what I got?

CUT TO: Lawrence standing with Evelyn next to the bed. Making up his mind. Back to his fantasy —

EXT. LAWRENCE’S BALCONY — NIGHT

Lawrence opens the door, moves on to the balcony and doesn’t miss a step.

EVELYN
Lawrence…
(petrified)
LAWRENCE, NO.

Lawrence lunges the prone body of Evelyn out into the air. She stops for a split second until gravity snatches its prize.

INT. SWIMMING POOL — DAY

From a high angle — a brick splashes in slow motion and descends to the tiles underwater.

INT. LAWRENCE’S BEDROOM — NIGHT

The fantasy scream fades. Lawrence stands with Evelyn in his arms. He places her in bed.

LAWRENCE
I got a certificate.

INT. SWIMMING POOL, UNDERWATER DEEP END — DAY

The nine year-old Lawrence swims down and as he reaches focus we see the brick. Lawrence stares. Back to the brick. Lawrence LEAVES the brick and makes for the surface.

INT. LAWRENCE’S BEDROOM — NIGHT

Lawrence gets up and leaves the bedroom.

LAWRENCE
A certificate. Can’t for the life of me remember where I put it.

He closes the door.

THE END