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                                MOONRISE KINGDOM
                                  Written by

                         Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola

                                                           May 1, 2011

          A landing at the top of a crooked, wooden staircase. There is
          a threadbare, braided rug on the floor. There is a long, wide
          corridor decorated with faded paintings of sailboats and
          battleships. The wallpapers are sun-bleached and peeling at
          the corners except for a few newly-hung strips which are
          clean and bright. A small easel sits stored in the corner.
          Outside, a hard rain falls, drumming the roof and rattling
          the gutters.
          A ten-year-old boy in pajamas comes up the steps carefully
          eating a bowl of cereal as he walks. He is Lionel. Lionel
          slides open the door to a low cabinet under the window. He
          takes out a portable record player, puts a disc on the
          turntable, and sets the needle into the spinning groove.
          A child's voice says over the speaker:
           RECORD PLAYER (V.O.)
           In order to show you how a big symphony
           orchestra is put together, Benjamin
           Britten has written a big piece of music,
           which is made up of smaller pieces that
           show you all the separate parts of the
          As Lionel listens, three other children wander out of their
          bedrooms and down to the landing.
          The first is an eight-year-old boy in a bathrobe. He is
          Murray. The second is a nine-year-old boy in white boxer
          shorts and a white undershirt. He is Rudy. The third is a
          twelve-year-old girl in a cardigan sweater with knee-high
          socks and brightly polished, patent-leather shoes. She is
          Suzy. She carries a one-month-old striped kitten.
          The boys drop down to the floor next to their brother. They
          lie on their stomachs with their chins propped up on their
          fists, listening.
          Suzy sits in the windowsill. She opens a book called Shelly
          and the Secret Universe. There is an illustration on the
          cover of a young gymnast with a glowing amulet around her
          Suzy starts to read -- then pauses. She lowers her book. She
          raises a pair of junior binoculars to her eyes. She looks out
          into the rain.
          A rickety, three-story, stone-and-shingle house on a hillside
          with turrets and a widow's walk. A weather vane swings
          creaking on the roof. Tree tops sway in a cluster below. The
          sea is almost invisible in the misting rain, and the mainland
          is a shadow across the sound. Suzy sits in the high window,
                         TITLES OVER:
          The family stuck indoors all day out of the rain.
          In bedrooms, bathrooms, and corridors, we see the boys. They
          shoot marbles. They throw jacks. They play cards. They eat
          grilled cheese sandwiches together in the kitchen.
          In half-open doorways, we see the parents. Mr. Bishop is a
          tall, fifty-year-old man in Madras trousers and horn-rimmed
          glasses. He reads the newspaper and drinks coffee. Mrs.
          Bishop is a tan, forty-five-year-old woman in a Lilly
          Pulitzer-type wrap-around skirt. She washes her hair,
          topless, in the kitchen sink.
          In windows, we see Suzy with her binoculars. She watches wet
          branches shaking in the woods. She watches a man in a slicker
          fishing from a row-boat. She watches a white colt in a field.
          She eats a bowl of tomato soup alone in the pantry.
          In the distance, a seaplane flies by below the clouds.
                         CUT TO:
          The edge of a cliff above a white beach. A rocky peninsula
          curls into the background. Brisk wind rustles the tall grass.
          A fifty-year-old man, bald on top with long hair on the
          sides, stands next to a surveyor's levelling instrument on a
          tripod. He wears rubber boots and a parka. He is the
          narrator. He speaks to the camera:
           This is the island of New Penzance.
           Sixteen miles long. Forested with old-
           growth pine and maple. Criss-crossed by
           shallow tidal creeks. An important
           seabird habitat. There are no paved roads
           but instead many miles of intersecting
           foot paths and dirt trails and a ferry
           that runs twice daily from Stone Cove.
           The year is 1965. We are on the far edge
           of Black Beacon Sound, famous for the
           ferocious and well-documented storm which
           will strike from the east on the fifth of
           September -- in three day's time.
          EXT. SCOUT CAMP. DAY
          A clearing in the woods with ten small, khaki tents pitched
          in a row. A banner on a flag-pole ripples in the wind. It
          reads Camp Ivanhoe. A bugler in a khaki uniform with a yellow
          neckerchief plays a staccato tattoo. He has a gauze patch
          over one eye. He is Lazy-Eye.
          A thirty-five-year-old man in the same uniform emerges
          through the flaps of a larger tent. He is Scout Master Ward.
          He puts on a wide-brimmed felt hat. A badge on the crown
          reads Khaki Scouts, Troop 55. He lights a cigarette. A thin
          scout with curly hair and sunglasses joins him at his side.
          He is Gadge.
           Morning, Gadge.
           Morning, sir.
          Gadge flips open a small, spiral-bound note-book. Scout
          Master Ward goes over to a latrine made from thick sticks and
          rope. A tall, stooped scout digs a trench next to it with an
          army-shovel. He is Deluca.
           Deluca. Latrine inspection.
          Deluca stops digging. He pulls on a rope and water runs down
          a chute. It bursts through a valve, spins a little door, and
          a small, red flag flips up. Scout Master Ward nods.
          Gadge makes a note. Scout Master Ward strides away. He stops
          in front of a scout with long hair over his eyes sitting on a
          stump twisting something in his fingers. He is Roosevelt.
           Roosevelt. How's that lanyard coming?
           I don't know. I think I skipped a stitch.
          A small, woven, multi-colored cord with a rabbit's foot
          attached to the end of it. It has been braided exceedingly
          badly and is brutally twisted and misshapen.
          Scout Master Ward studies the lanyard briefly. He looks
          perplexed. He pats Roosevelt on the back gently and does a
          secret handshake with him. Gadge makes a note. Scout Master
          Ward strides away.
          An off-road motorcycle races by in the background behind the
          tents. It jumps a mound of dirt, kicks sideways in the air,
          and revs away riding a wheelie. Scout Master Ward frowns.
          Scout Master Ward stops in front of a pile of boards and logs
          stacked six feet high. A thick-set scout with black hair and
          a crooked tooth approaches with more logs in his arms. He is
           Skotak. What's all this lumber for?
           We're building a tree house.
          Skotak points up. Scout Master Ward squints. There is a small
          platform under construction about sixty feet above them. Two
          scouts are sawing something in half on it. Scout Master Ward
          looks astonished.
           That's not a safe altitude.
          Scout Master Ward circles around the trunk while looking up
          at the tree house. He stammers:
           Why's it up so high? If somebody falls --
           it's a guaranteed death.
           Well, where would you've built it?
          Gadge makes a note. Skotak looks sheepish. Scout Master Ward
          strides away. He stops in front of a very small scout with
          tiny eyes poking at an anthill with a stick. He appears to be
          contemplating pouring lighter fluid on it. He is Nickleby.
           Nickleby. Spot check.
          Nickleby stands up. He looks extremely disheveled.
           Your socks are down. Your shirt-tails are
           untucked. Your trousers are not properly
           pressed. You are reported for uniform
          Gadge makes a note. Nickleby slouches. Scout Master Ward
          strides away. He stops in front of a work-bench covered with
          newspaper where one scout sifts green powder through a funnel
          into cardboard tubes and another makes wax stoppers with a
          metal press. They are Panagle and Izod. A sign on the side of
          the table reads No Smoking. Scout Master Ward hands his
          cigarette to Gadge, who holds it away at arm's length.
           How many rockets you up to, Panagle?
           Sixteen and a half.
                          (TO GADGE)
           That enough for the Jubilee?
          Gadge shakes his head. Scout Master Ward turns to Izod.
           Izod, go fetch another pint of gun-powder
           from the armory shed.
          Izod dashes around the corner. Scout Master Ward strides
          away. He shouts:
           Redford! Halt!
          The motorcycle skids to a stop in front of Scout Master Ward,
          engulfing him in a thick cloud of dust. He coughs and waves
          his arms in the air. As the smoke clears, we see that the
          rider is a bronze, all-American-looking boy with blond hair.
          He is Redford. His motorcycle has flames painted on the gas
          tank. He tries to cover for himself:
           Safety-test, sir.
           Come again?
           The vehicle appears to be in good working
           order. I'm just checking if --
           Reckless cycling. Second warning. Next
           time, I take away the keys.
          Gadge makes a note. Redford scowls. Scout Master Ward strides
          away. He walks past a scout in a white apron cooking bacon
          over a charcoal grill. He is Chef.
           Morning, Chef.
          Chef rings a bell hanging on a post. Scout Master Ward
          arrives at a long picnic table. He sits down and opens a
          magazine called Indian Corn. There is a picture on the cover
          of a scout troop crossing a bridge in Indonesia.
          The first page. A caption across the top reads Scout Master-
          in-Chief. There is a drawing of a seventy-year-old man on
          horseback. He has silver hair and a moustache. A signature
          below reads Commander Pierce. There is a quotation in large
          text: "An eagle was never hatched from a goose's egg."
          As Scout Master Ward reads, all the scouts begin to join him
          one-by-one. They range in age from twelve to fifteen. They
          unscrew the tops of tin mess-kits and assemble folding
          utensils. The chef brings a tray of scrambled eggs to the
          table. The scouts serve themselves noisily.
          Scout Master Ward starts to take a sip of coffee from a metal
          cup -- then stops. He looks up from his magazine.
           Who's missing?
          Scout Master Ward silently reels off a list of names,
          scanning the troop. He turns and shouts across the camp:
           Shakusky! Breakfast!
          Silence. Scout Master Ward calls to Lazy-Eye:
          Lazy-Eye plays another tattoo. Silence.
          Scout Master Ward closes his magazine. He flicks his
          cigarette into a red bucket labelled Fire. He picks up a
          strip of bacon and chews on it as he rises to his feet and
          walks down the row of smaller tents. The last one is sealed
          at the front. Scout Master Ward stands with his hands on his
          hips and says:
           Shakusky? You in there?
          Scout Master Ward tugs on the tent's flaps. He frowns. He
          says to Gadge:
           It's zipped from the inside.
          The other scouts begin to gather with their tin breakfast
          plates in their hands, watching curiously while they eat.
          Scout Master Ward's voice softens:
          Scout Master Ward looks concerned. He produces a wooden-
          handled scout pocket-knife. He unfolds a few blades and
          gadgets and decides quickly on a thin tool with a hook on the
          end. He crouches down and slips the hook through a small gap
          at the base of the flap, twists left and right, then pulls up
          briskly, unzipping the tent.
          INT. SCOUT TENT. DAY
          The lining of the tent is printed with images of trees and
          pine cones, and a plaid rug covers the floor. There is a foot
          locker, a gas lamp, a chair with a folded blanket over it,
          and an empty cot. Scout Master Ward steps inside slowly, bent
          over, examining the space. He lifts the lid of the foot
          locker. He looks under the corner of the mattress. He picks
          up a piece of folded yellow notebook paper sticking out from
          under a pillow. He opens it and stares at it. He turns
          suddenly to the chair against the wall of the tent and slides
          it aside.
          There is neat but slightly jagged hole the size of a
          basketball cut through the fabric in the back corner. Scout
          Master Ward looks to his staring troop.
           Jiminy Cricket. He flew the coop.
          A one-room bungalow with a sign on the door that reads Island
          Police. There is a wood-panelled station wagon parked
          alongside it with roller-lights on the roof and a sheriff's
          office insignia on the door. (This is the only car on the
          island.) A dock stretches from the cottage into a small
          harbor. There is a launch moored at the end of it which bobs
          in the rough tide.
          A silver Airstream trailer is parked under a tree nearby.
          A six-foot tall, forty-five-year-old man sits on a stool
          fishing from the side of the dock. He wears a short-sleeved
          police uniform with a black necktie and a baseball cap. His
          glasses have clear, plastic frames and a strap. He is Captain
          Two grouchy, leathery, very old men in plaid flannel and
          hunting caps fish alongside Captain Sharp. A speaker on a
          post emits an electric buzz. Captain Sharp turns. He stands
          up briskly and says to one of the old men:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Watch my line, Edgar.
          A small office with a desk, a file cabinet, and a two-way
          radio. Captain Sharp comes inside, sits down, grabs a
          microphone, and presses a red button on the side of it with
          his thumb.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Hello? This is Captain Sharp. Over.
          Scout Master Ward's voice comes over a crackly speaker:
           SCOUT MASTER WARD (V.O.)
           Captain Sharp, this is Randall Ward over
           at Camp Ivanhoe. Over.
          Captain Sharp pours himself a cup of coffee from a pot on a
          hot-plate as he answers distractedly:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Morning, Randy. What can I do for you?
           SCOUT MASTER WARD (V.O.)
           I'm not sure, exactly. I've got an
           escaped Khaki Scout. Over.
          Silence. Captain Sharp frowns slightly.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           What does that mean? Over.
           SCOUT MASTER WARD (V.O.)
           One of my boys seems to have stolen a dug-
           out and some fishing tackle, ten pounds
           SCOUT MASTER WARD (V.O.) (cont'd)
           of sundries, two bedrolls, plus an air
           rifle -- and disappeared. Over.
          Captain Sharp slowly stirs sugar into his coffee as he
          contemplates this. He says finally:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Any idea why? Over.
           SCOUT MASTER WARD (V.O.)
           No. He left me a letter of resignation.
          A sheet of wide-ruled yellow paper which reads in a boy's
                         PENCILED SCRAWL:
           Dear Scout Master Ward, I am very sad
           to inform you I can no longer be involved
           with the Khaki Scouts of North America.
           The rest of the troop will probably be
           glad to hear this. It is not your fault.
           Best wishes, Sam Shakusky.
          Captain Sharp scratches his head. He checks his watch. Pause.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I guess we better notify his folks. Over.
           SCOUT MASTER WARD (V.O.)
           OK. Over and out.
          A clapboard cottage surrounded by a white, picket fence. A
          sign on the door reads U.S. Mail. Captain's Sharp station
          wagon is parked in the background.
          A young woman with her hair in a bun sits at an operator's
          switchboard eating a sandwich wrapped in wax-paper. She is
          Becky. She wears bulky head-phones with a microphone
          attached. Captain Sharp paces behind her. Scout Master Ward
          flips through a stack of letters and post cards.
          A bell rings on the switchboard. Becky plugs cords into
           Hello, Diane.
           OPERATOR (V.O.)
           Becky, I have your person-to-person from
           Hold the line, please.
          Becky signals to Captain Sharp and Scout Master Ward. They
          sit down quickly and put on their own sets of operator head-
           Go ahead, Chesterfield.
                         CUT TO:
          Split-screen. On one side of the frame, we see Captain Sharp,
          Scout Master Ward, and Becky. On the other side, we see a
          seventy-five-year-old man with a grizzled face sitting at a
          kitchen table drinking coffee and smoking a cigarette while a
          white-haired woman ices a cake in the background. They are
          Mr. and Mrs. Billingsley. Mr. Billingsley says into his
           MR. BILLINGSLEY
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Hello, sir. This is Captain Sharp.
           MR. BILLINGSLEY
           Yes, sir. I received your message. Thank
           you very much. In fact, we've come to a
           decision, as a family, because this is
           only the most recent incident involving
           Sam's troubles, and it's just not fair to
           the others, so, unfortunately -- we can't
           invite him back, at this time.
          Captain Sharp, Scout Master Ward, and Becky all look puzzled.
          Captain Sharp says evenly:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           There's no cause for alarm, sir. We'll
           find him. We're just notifying you as a
           matter of protocol and so on.
           MR. BILLINGSLEY
           I understand that. I'm notifying you of
           the situation on my end.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I'm confused by that statement. You can't
           invite him back?
           MR. BILLINGSLEY
           I'm afraid not. He's a good boy, he's got
           a good heart, but it's just not fair to
           the others, you see? He's emotionally
          Long pause. No one moves except Mrs. Billingsley icing her
          cake. Captain Sharp says finally:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Am I speaking to Sam's father?
          Mr. Billingsley frowns. He says, surprised:
           MR. BILLINGSLEY
           No, sir. Sam's parents passed away a
           number of years ago. We're Mr. and Mrs.
           Billingsley. We're foster parents. Sam's
           been with us since last June.
          Mrs. Billingsley has stopped icing her cake. She watches Mr.
          Billingsley. Scout Master Ward interjects:
           Excuse me, sir. This is Scout Master Ward
           speaking. Are you implying Sam's an
           MR. BILLINGSLEY
           Well, it's a known fact. Of course, he
           Why the hell doesn't it say that in the
           register? Excuse my language.
          Scout Master Ward holds up a manila file-card. Mr.
          Billingsley shrugs.
           MR. BILLINGSLEY
           I don't know. What register?
          The manila file-card. It is labelled Khaki Scout Register.
          Sam Shakusky is typed across the top line. There is an
          address, health information, and a small, faded snap-shot
          stapled to the corner of it of a twelve-year-old boy standing
          in a sunny tobacco field. He wears his scout uniform with a
          Davy Crockett-style coon-skin cap.
           MR. BILLINGSLEY
           We sent him a letter. It should reach you
          Scout Master Ward looks quickly through his stack of letters.
          He stops and pulls out an air-mail envelope. He stares at it.
          Captain Sharp says forcefully but highly agitated:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Mr. Billingsley, I've got an escaped
           Khaki Scout. We're notifying you as a
           matter of protocol. You say you can't
           invite him back? You say he's an orphan?
           Well, I don't understand how that works.
                          (TOTALLY CONFUSED)
           What am I supposed to do with him?
           MR. BILLINGSLEY
           That's up to Social Services. They'll be
           in touch with you. They'll look after
           Sam. Good luck to you.
          Mr. Billingsley hangs up the telephone. Becky pulls the cords
          out of their sockets. Captain Sharp looks to Scout Master
          Ward. Silence.
          Becky opens a tin of home-made chocolate chip cookies.
          Captain Sharp declines one. Scout Master Ward tries one. He
          looks very impressed.
          EXT. SCOUT CAMP. DAY
          Scout Master Ward stands on a bench addressing his assembled
          troop. The scouts are equipped for hiking with back-packs and
           You have your orders. Use the
           orienteering and path-finding skills
           you've been practicing all summer. Let's
           find our man and bring him safely back to
           camp. Remember: this isn't just a search
           party, it's a chance to do some first-
           class scouting. Any questions?
          Lazy-Eye raises his hand. Scout Master Ward points to him.
           What's your real job, sir?
                          (CAUGHT OFF-GUARD)
           I'm a math teacher.
           What grade?
           Eighth. Why?
          Lazy-Eye shrugs. Scout Master Ward frowns.
           You know, we're, actually, kind of, in
           the middle of something, if you didn't
           notice. This is a crisis. Anybody else?
          Redford raises his hand. Scout Master Ward points to him.
           What if he resists?
           Shakusky. Are we allowed to use force on
           No, you're not. This is a non-violent
           rescue effort. Your instructions are to
           find him, not to hurt him. Under any
           circumstances. Do I make myself
          The scouts murmur their understanding. Scout Master Ward
          Pause. Scout Master Ward wheels back to Lazy-Eye:
           I'm going to change my answer, in fact.
           This is my real job. Scout Master, Troop
           55. That's us. I'm proud of that.
          The scouts look impressed but slightly lost. Scout Master
          Ward says finally:
           Be leery out there. OK, let's get
           started. Where's Snoopy?
           Right here.
          Skotak holds up a leash attached to a wire-haired terrier.
          Scout Master Ward takes a sock with a fleur-de-lis on it out
          of a paper sack.
           Give him the scent.
          Scout Master Ward hands the sock to Skotak.
                         CUT TO:
          Redford, Deluca, Nickleby, Lazy-Eye, and Gadge at the back of
          the group talking under their breath while Skotak waves the
          sock under the dog's nose:
           I heard he ran away because his family
           I heard he never had any family in the
           first place.
           That's probably why he's crazy.
           I'll tell you one thing: if we find him,
           I'm not going to be the one who forgot to
           bring a weapon.
           Me, neither.
          The troop moves in a wide line searching through a thicket of
          skinny trees. Redford carries a net and a giant tomahawk in a
          sling. Deluca has a large hunting knife tucked under his
          belt. Panagle holds a walking stick with a cluster of nails
          sticking out on the end of it. Nickleby, Izod, and Lazy-Eye
          all wear bows and quivers of arrows strapped to their backs.
          The wire-haired terrier strains at the end of a leash,
          sniffing down a foot-path.
          Scout Master Ward speeds up the river in a small boat with an
          out-board motor. He gives orders over a walkie-talkie. Gadge
          Captain Sharp stands on the doorsteps of various big houses
          showing the snap-shot of the missing scout to: an elderly
          woman, a house-keeper, a group of children, a priest. They
          all shake their heads.
          Captain Sharp drives his station wagon down a beach, through
          a field, and over a bridge.
          Captain Sharp stands at the front door talking with Mr. and
          Mrs. Bishop. Mr. Bishop holds a glass of red wine in one hand
          and an open bottle in the other. Mrs. Bishop looks slightly
          uneasy. They both study the snap-shot.
           MR. BISHOP
           Camp Ivanhoe? That's all the way across
           the other side of the island. You really
           think a twelve-year-old boy could row
           this far in a canoe?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Most likely not.
           MRS. BISHOP
           (with a shrug)
           It's possible, Counsellor.
           MR. BISHOP
                          (SLIGHTLY IRRITATED)
           I disagree, Counsellor. It'd take him
           three days, at least.
           MRS. BISHOP
           I don't think so. Two days, maximum.
           MR. BISHOP
           Well, I'm not going to argue about it.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Be that as it may, will you let me know
           if you see anything unusual?
                         CUT TO:
          A binocular shot of Captain Sharp from overhead as he walks
          away down the front steps. He passes Lionel, Murray, and Rudy
          on their way up the path. They wear wet bathing suits and
          towels around their shoulders. Captain Sharp pats Rudy on the
          top of his head. He dries his hand on the leg of his
          trousers. He gets into his station wagon, backs out of the
          driveway, circles through the woods, and drives around to a
          small dirt road a hundred yards behind the house. He stops
          the car. He gets out, sits on the hood, and lights a
          Suzy watches from the widow's walk with her binoculars. She
          lowers them. She looks curious. She raises them back to her
          eyes and sees:
          Mrs. Bishop from overhead as she comes out the back door of
          the house carrying a basket of damp laundry. She pauses at a
          clothesline, looks left and right, then walks quickly into
          the trees. She crosses a foot-bridge and arrives at the dirt
          road. Captain Sharp stands up. They talk briefly but
          intensely. Mrs. Bishop leans against the car and stares into
          space. Captain Sharp touches her hair. Mrs. Bishop makes a
          gesture with her fingers. Captain Sharp hands her his
          cigarette. Mrs. Bishop takes a puff, hands it back, and
          strides away again through the woods. Captain Sharp gets into
          his station wagon and drives off.
          A portable night stand. There is a reel-to-reel tape recorder
          recording on it. A framed photograph next to it shows the
          Scout-Master-in-Chief posing with a troop in front of the
          The front flaps are tied-open, and a mosquito net is drawn. A
          hanging lantern flickers on a hook. A bugle plays a variation
          of taps in the distance. Scout Master Ward sits on a cot
          dressed in pajamas. He smokes a cigarette and drinks a glass
          of brandy while he speaks tensely into a microphone:
           Scout Master's log. September second.
           First day of search party for Sam
           Shakusky. Morale is extremely low, in
           part, I suppose, because Sam is,
           unfortunately, the least popular scout in
           the troop, by a significant margin. I'm
           worried, and I'm confused. Please, let us
           find him tomorrow. Please, don't let him
           fall off a cliff or drown in the goddamn
           lake or something. A terrible day at Camp
           Ivanhoe. Let's hope tomorrow's better. In
           fact, I'm going to say a prayer.
          Scout Master Ward presses stop. He kneels down on the floor,
          closes his eyes, presses his palms together, and whispers.
          Scout Master Ward zips up his tent and turns off the light.
          Crickets chirp. Bats circle. The wire-haired terrier digs
          carefully through a pile of trash.
          The next morning. A fast current runs along a shallow ravine
          deep in the forest. The boy from the snap-shot rows a mini-
          canoe painted with Native American tribal symbols and
          severely over-loaded with boxes, bags, and blankets. He wears
          a pellet gun slung on a strap over his shoulder and his coon-
          skin cap. He smokes a pipe. A sash across his chest is
          decorated with numerous small, embroidered patches. There is
          a woman's enamelled brooch pinned to his shirt. It is a
          jeweled, black scorpion. He whistles to himself quietly as he
          steers under a fallen tree-trunk and winds through gentle
          rapids. He is Sam.
          EXT. RIVER BANK. DAY
          An eddy under a willow tree. The end of the canoe is tied to
          a branch, and the cargo is stacked on the shore. Sam covers
          the boat with a camouflage net and dresses the top with pine-
          Sam hikes through a pass wearing an extremely large back-pack
          with stakes, metal poles, and two bed-rolls strapped to the
          bottom. He wears a compass on a string around his neck.
                         CUT TO:
          A binocular shot of Sam emerging from the woods into a wide
          meadow. The grass comes up to his chest and flows in waves.
          He pauses to check his compass. He spins slowly one direction
          and then back the other while he stares at the dial. He looks
          up again. He walks onward. He stops.
          Suzy lowers her binoculars. She stands at the end of a path
          cut through the high grass. She has a leather folder in one
          hand, the portable record player in the other, plus a small
          suitcase and her kitten in a basket at her side. Sam takes
          his coon-skin hat slowly off his head. He strides across the
          meadow. Suzy watches him approach. She swallows. Her lips
          part. Sam comes onto the path. He stops ten feet away from
          Sam and Suzy stare at each other. Silence. (NOTE: Suzy is
          slightly taller than Sam.)
          A poster box with St. Jack's Church across the top. A purple-
          ink mimeographed page is stapled to a bulletin board inside
          under the heading Summer Pageant, 1964. It reads:
                          BENJAMIN BRITTEN'S
                          "NOYE'S FLUDDE"
           Performed by the
           Choristers of St. Jack Wood and New Penzance
                         CUT TO:
          Dusk. A brick church at the top of a bluff overlooking the
          bay. It is overgrown with ivy and wisteria. There is a
          cemetery with a low wrought-iron fence. An organ plays
           One Year Earlier
          A play is in progress. The set includes a long ark with a
          sail built on a platform behind the altar. Two teenagers
          crouched in the wings ripple a narrow, blue sheet across the
          foot of the stage. (This is meant to be water.) The rest of
          the room is dim, with tall candles flickering along the
          center aisle. The beams are draped with garlands. A large
          congregation fills every pew plus folding chairs against the
          walls. More people sit and stand on the steps to the choir
          loft at the back and in nooks and corners. The members of a
          brass ensemble seated beside the organist wait for their next
          cue, following their sheet music with instruments poised.
          Khaki Scouts and scout masters occupy the rear section of the
          church. A very young troop in a slightly different version of
          the uniform fills a row near the exit. Sam sits on the aisle.
          He looks bored.
          A baritone built like a linebacker in robes and a fake beard
          sings ominously on the stage. Cymbals crash. Sam stands up
          and discreetly wanders toward the side door with his hands in
          his pockets. A slight, forty-year-old man in the same uniform
          watches him from the end of the pew, frowning.
                         CUT TO:
          Sam quietly entering the lobby. The sound of the music
          deadens as he gently shuts the door behind him. He turns
          around and puts on a yellow scout cap with Junior Khaki
          stitched on the bill. The room is jammed with children
          dressed as animals, waiting nervously in a long line that
          winds all around the space. They whisper and shuffle. A large
          woman stares through a small window into the church with her
          hand on a doorknob. She is Mrs. Lynn. She snaps her fingers
          suddenly without looking to the children. They fall silent.
          Mrs. Lynn swings open the center doors. Music fills the room
          again. The first twenty of the children begin to sing. They
          march out of the lobby, two by two. The woman closes the
          doors behind them, and the next group takes their place to
          Sam walks slowly among otters, monkeys, squirrels, and
          skunks, examining their costumes, periodically touching
          horns, tusks, and teeth. No one pays attention to him. He
          drinks a sip from a water fountain. He picks up a mint from a
          bowl and sucks on it. He slips out through a swinging door.
          Sam moves down a dark corridor. Voices murmur. He pokes his
          head around a corner. A rack of choir robes and cassocks
          blocks his path. He slides two of them apart and looks
                         THROUGH AT:
          Five eleven-year-old girls in black leotards sitting on a
          bench in front of a mirror framed with light bulbs. They talk
          quietly and fix their make-up. They all wear wings on their
          arms and beaks on their heads. Suzy sits among them in black
          feathers. Sam stares at her. He steps into the light
          silently. Suzy sees him in the reflection. The other girls
          turn around quickly, covering themselves.
          Sam removes his cap and takes another step forward. His eyes
          dart briefly among the other girls. He says to Suzy:
           What kind of bird are you?
          Suzy hesitates. She looks to the girl next to her, who says
          in a bossy voice:
                          BOSSY GIRL
           I'm a sparrow, she's a dove, and --
          Sam does not look away from Suzy as he interrupts, pointing:
           No, I said, "What kind of bird are you?"
          The other girls all look to Suzy. Pause.
           I'm a raven.
          Suzy lifts her beak slightly higher on her forehead. The
          other girls look annoyed but transfixed. The bossy girl
                          BOSSY GIRL
           Boy's aren't allowed in here.
          Sam does not look away from Suzy as he answers quietly:
           I'll be leaving soon.
          Sam points down at Suzy's lap. One of her hands is wrapped in
          a bandage.
           What happened to your hand?
           I got hit in the mirror.
                          (TAKEN ABACK)
           Really. How'd that happen?
           I lost my temper at myself.
          Sam is deeply intrigued by this. The other girls look
          puzzled. Suzy presses her hair back off her face. She watches
          Sam nervously.
           What's your name?
           Sam. What's yours?
           I'm Suzy.
          Sam nods with his eyes still glued to Suzy's. Suzy bites her
          fingernails. The bossy girl rolls her eyes.
                          BOSSY GIRL
           It's not polite to stare.
          Sam holds up his hand for the bossy girl to stop talking.
          Mrs. Lynn steps into the doorway.
           MRS. LYNN
           Birds! Ready?
          Mrs. Lynn does a double-take. She snaps at Sam:
           MRS. LYNN
           Who are you? Where'd you come from? Go
           back to your seat.
          Sam hesitates. He spits the mint into a trash can, ducks out
          through the clothing rack, and is gone. A skinny girl dressed
          as an owl watches Suzy while the other girls hurry to their
          feet. She says quietly:
                          SKINNY GIRL
           He likes you.
          Troops flood out from one side of the church while children
          in animal costumes flood out from the other. They criss-cross
          among grave-markers and head-stones. Sam stops abruptly, face
          to face with the skinny owl. She whispers something, points
          behind her, and thrusts a folded scrap of paper into Sam's
          A vehicle crowded with scouts. Sam sits alone in the back
          row. He stares into space, entranced.
                         CUT TO:
          Suzy on-stage at the top of a pedestal with her arms in the
          air, spreading her wings. She is surrounded by the entire
          cast of singing animals. The music soars.
                         CUT TO:
          Sam as he looks down at the piece of paper in his hand.
          A sheet of pink stationary with an address in a girl's red
          felt-tip cursive and the words:
           Write to me.
                         CUT TO:
          The present. Sam and Suzy face each other in the wide meadow.
          Sam says carefully:
           Were you followed?
                          (LOOKING AROUND)
           I doubt it.
          Sam frowns and squints. He points.
           Did you bring a cat?
          Suzy nods. Sam smiles. Suzy smiles. Sam takes a folded map
          out of his pocket. He signals for Suzy to come closer.
           Can you read a map?
           I do cartography.
          Sam points to one of the patches on his sash. It has a
          protractor embroidered on it. He unfolds the map.
           I feel we should go halfway today and
           halfway tomorrow, since you're a less
           experienced hiker, and you're wearing
           Sunday-school shoes.
           (pointing on the map)
           Here's where we are right now. I'd like
           to pitch camp here by sixteen-hundred
           (which means four o'clock). How does that
           You want some beef jerky?
          Sam tears a strip of dried meat in two and gives half to
          Suzy. She tries to chew on it. Sam nods:
           Let's go.
          Sam and Suzy walk together down a hill, across a field, and
          through a wooded path eating beef jerky. They both smile
           Are you thirsty?
           Well, if your throat gets parched, stick
           a pebble in your mouth and suck on it.
           You can quench your thirst with the spit,
          Sam shows Suzy some bits of green and yellow sticking out
          from under his coonskin cap.
           Sometimes I stick leaves under my hat. It
           cools your head down.
           That's a good idea. It might help also if
           you didn't wear fur.
           True, but this adds camouflage.
          Sam stands in a clearing and pulls a handful of dry grass. He
          holds it in his fist.
           Here's a trick. Throw grass in the air,
           and you can see which direction the
           wind's blowing.
          Sam throws up the grass. It swirls and drifts vaguely. Suzy
           Which way?
           Unknown. I guess it doesn't really
           matter, as long as we cover our tracks.
          Sam and Suzy stop to investigate and discuss: a patch of
          mushrooms, moss on a stump, ferns, poison ivy, and a low bush
          with purple fruit. Sam looks skeptical.
           These might be poisonous.
                          (STUDYING THEM)
           No, they're huckleberries, in fact. Try
          Suzy brushes off some dirt and eats a berry. Sam puts one
          into his mouth and nods.
           Not bad. Anyway, they're good for
          Sam and Suzy look through Suzy's binoculars at a deer
          drinking from a stream. Suzy whispers:
           He knows someone's watching him.
           I agree. Why do you say that?
           I don't know. I just think he can feel
          Sam and Suzy walk across a fallen tree over a stream. A snake
          swims on the surface below them. Sam assists Suzy onto the
          far bank.
           You smell like perfume.
           It's my mother's.
          Sam picks up two pebbles. He and Suzy both put them in their
          mouths. They click against their teeth.
           I brought water, too.
          Sam and Suzy watch a small, green worm wriggling in the air,
          swaying from a silk thread. They stare, wide-eyed. Suzy cups
          her hand a few inches below it and moves it around in a
          circle. Sam shrugs.
           Should we catch him?
           What for?
           Trout bait. We need worms.
          Pause. The worm curls and uncurls itself gently. Sam nods.
           You're right. We'll let him live. Maybe
           I've got a licorice whip.
          EXT. LAKE SHORE. DAY
          The banks of a large pond. All of Sam's and Suzy's bags,
          boxes, and suitcases are arranged around a small tent
          decorated with more tribal symbols. The kitten is asleep. Sam
          and Suzy stand at the water's edge as he removes the
          camouflage net from the canoe and says gravely:
           How strong of a swimmer are you?
           Pretty good. I broke our school record
           for the back-stroke.
                          (MILDLY SURPRISED)
           OK. Well, I'm not that strong of a
           swimmer, so I wear a life-preserver. I
           think it's a good policy to get in the
           habit, anyway.
          Sam and Suzy both strap on vests belted with cork blocks.
          A strip of bright red licorice on a hook under water.
                         CUT TO:
          Sam and Suzy in the middle of the lake. Suzy sits at one end
          of the canoe fishing with a bamboo pole. Sam drapes his
          fingers off the side and stirs the water.
           Watch out for turtles. They'll bite you,
           if you put your fingers in their mouths.
           Let me see if I can catch this one.
          Sam dips a net into the lake and brings it up with a small
          turtle in it. He lifts it out of the net. It has red and
          yellow markings and a slightly damaged shell. Sam flips it
          over. The word Albert is written on the underside of the
          turtle in magic marker. Sam says blankly:
           Somebody wrote on him.
          The fishing pole jerks in Suzy's hands. She yells:
           The stick's moving!
           You got one!
          Sam jumps to his feet and heaves the turtle with two hands.
          It sails through the air across the pond and splashes down
          with a whack. Sam yells an announcement:
           Fish on hook!
                          (TO SUZY)
           Reel him in! Slowly.
          The canoe rocks violently. Suzy snaps:
           Sit down!
          Sam sits back down. Suzy winds the reel carefully. Sam says,
                         GENTLY ENCOURAGING:
           You're doing good.
          Sam points to one of the patches on his sash. It has a rod
          and reel embroidered on it.
           This is for fishing.
          Sam twists a stick with a shoelace in kindling and builds a
          small camp-fire circled with rocks. He cooks two fish with
          bologna in a frying pan over a camp-fire. He throws in a dash
          of salt, grinds some pepper, and flips the fish in the air.
          He holds out a bite on a spatula to Suzy sitting on a log
          next to him. She tastes it. She looks surprised and nods
           Very good. You know a lot about camping,
           don't you?
           I'm a Khaki Scout. It's what I'm trained
          Sam points to one of the patches on his sash. It has fried
          eggs and bacon on it.
           Anyway, I used to be.
          Sam serves the fish onto two tin plates. He says as they eat
          with folding forks:
           We can feed your cat the guts and
          Sam points to a pile of bloody organs and bones on a page of
          newspaper. Suzy frowns.
           That's OK. He only eats cat food.
          Suzy points to a cardboard box. Sam looks inside. It is
          filled with ten cans of cat food. Sam raises an eyebrow.
           What else did you bring? We should make
           an inventory.
          Sam flips open a small, spiral-bound note-book.
           Go ahead.
          Suzy opens the top of her portable record player. She
          displays it like a salesman.
           This is my record player. It works with
           batteries. Actually, it belongs to my
           little brother Lionel. I left him a note.
           Do you like music?
          Sam nods and makes a note. Suzy opens her leather folder.
          There are three L.P. records in it. She takes out one by a
          French singer.
           This is my favorite record album. My
           godmother gave it to me for my birthday.
           She lives in France.
          Sam nods and makes another note. Suzy opens her suitcase. It
          is filled to the brim with hard-back copies of fantasy books.
          It contains no other items of any kind (including clothing).
           These are my books. I like stories with
           magic powers in them. Either in kingdoms
           on earth or on foreign planets. Also,
           time-travel, if they make it realistic.
           Usually, I prefer a girl hero, but not
           always. I couldn't bring all of them
           because it got too heavy. You can borrow
           any you want.
          Sam nods and makes another note. Suzy produces a few more
           I also brought my lefty scissors because
           I'm left-handed, my toothbrush, some
           rubber bands, extra batteries, and my
           binoculars, as you know. I forgot my
          Sam surveys the entire collection of articles. He scratches
          his head.
           That's it? No mess-kit? No flashlight? No
           canteen? No waterproof matches? Didn't
           you get the packing list I sent you in my
           last letter?
           I thought that's what you're supposed to
           bring. I don't own a canteen.
          Pause. Sam shrugs. He smiles.
           That's OK. We can share.
          Sam picks up one of the books. It is called The Girl from
          Jupiter. There is an illustration on the cover of a young,
          alien princess with glittering tears on her cheeks. Sam
          examines the other books in the suitcase. He looks slightly
           These are all library books. In my school
           you're only allowed to check-out one at a
           time. Some of these are going to be
          Sam hesitates. He suddenly realizes something. He asks
           Do you steal?
          Silence. Suzy nods reluctantly. Sam looks confused.
           Why? You're not poor.
          Suzy stares at the books. She absently brushes some dust off
          them. She rearranges them slightly. She says finally:
           I might turn some of them back in one
           day. I haven't decided yet. I know it's
           bad. I think I just took them to have a
           secret to keep. Anyway, for some reason,
           it makes me feel in a better mood
          Sam thinks about this. He leans his chin against his fist. He
                         SAYS SERIOUSLY:
           Are you depressed?
          Suzy bites her fingernails. She shrugs.
           How come?
          Pause. Suzy says philosophically:
           Well, I can show you an example, if you
           want -- but it doesn't make me feel very
           good. I found this on top of our
          Suzy looks into her leather folder and shuffles through some
          pages. She withdraws a small pamphlet.
          The cover of the pamphlet. There is a drawing of a broken tea-
          cup and the title "Coping with the Very Troubled Child".
          Sam frowns. His eyes widen.
           Does that mean you?
          Suzy nods. Sam explodes with laughter.
           It's not funny.
           To me, it is.
          Sam slaps his knee and shakes his head. Pause. Suzy dumps her
          fish into the campfire and throws her metal plate like a
          frisbee into a tree trunk. It bounces off with a ding. She
          stands up and says coolly:
           You really know how to make friends.
          Suzy walks away. She goes behind a bush and sits down on a
          rock. She starts to cry. Sam looks stricken and confused. He
          is very still. He gets up slowly. He tentatively approaches
          the bush. He looks behind it. He takes two steps closer. He
          stands above Suzy. He unties his neckerchief, crouches down,
          and holds it out.
           I'm sorry.
          Suzy looks to Sam. She hesitates. She takes the neckerchief.
           That's OK.
           I'm on your side.
           I know.
          Suzy dries her eyes. She unfolds the neckerchief and studies
          its design. It is a brave shooting an arrow while leaning off
          the side of a galloping horse. Sam motions to the books:
           Which one's the best?
                         CUT TO:
          Dusk. Sam lies on his back on one of the bedrolls smoking his
          pipe while Suzy sits Indian-style next to him. She reads
          aloud from a book called The Francine Odyssies. There is an
          illustration on the cover of an enormous panther with a
          bloody sword walking behind a small girl in a nightgown.
           His eyes downcast, his kingdom in ruins,
           Mynar pressed his heavy paw through the
           rippling surface of the cool shallows and
           down to its stone floor. "My people once
           were lead by a great and noble beast --
           and I no longer see his face in this
          Suzy looks to Sam. He is asleep. She takes the pipe out of
          his mouth and tips the ashes into the camp-fire. She draws a
          blanket over his chest. She continues:
           Meanwhile, on the Plains of Tabitha,
           Francine rested. There would be another
           time for war.
          The dining room. There is a long, wide, empty table with
          sixteen chairs around it. Tucked in the corner, Lionel,
          Murray, and Rudy sit at a folding card table. They have
          plates on place-mats and forks and knives. There is one extra
          seat. Mrs. Bishop's voice booms, amplified, from the next
           MRS. BISHOP (O.S.)
           Suzy! Dinner! I'm not going to say it
          Pause. Mrs. Bishop charges into the room with a steaming
          casserole. She wears an oven mitt on one hand and carries an
          electric megaphone in the other. She sets the casserole on
          the card table and looks out the window. Through the thicket
          of trees behind the house, a pair of headlights blinks. Mrs.
          Bishop checks her watch. She says sharply:
           MRS. BISHOP
           Where's your sister?
           I don't know, but she borrowed my record
           player for ten days without asking.
           MRS. BISHOP
           What does that mean?
          Lionel holds up a small, folded-up piece of pink stationary.
          Mrs. Bishop snaps it out of his hand and opens it.
          A short note on pink stationary in a girl's red felt-tip
          cursive. It reads:
           Dear Lionel, I need to use your
           record player. I will give it back in
           ten days or less. Do not tell Mom.
           (Or Dad.) I will replace the batteries
           when I return. Signed, Suzy Bishop
          Mrs. Bishop frowns. She bolts back out of the room. Her voice
                         BOOMS AGAIN:
           MRS. BISHOP (O.S.)
           Walt! Where the hell are you?
          There is a loud thump upstairs. Mr. Bishop shouts from
           MR. BISHOP (O.S.)
           Right here! Why are you cursing at me?
                         CUT TO:
          Exterior. Mr. Bishop leans out of an upstairs window. Mrs.
          Bishop appears in one below. She yells up through the
           MRS. BISHOP
           Does it concern you that your daughter's
           just run away from home?
           MR. BISHOP
           That's a loaded question.
          Mrs. Bishop brandishes the note with her free hand.
           MRS. BISHOP
           Come down and read this.
          A radio squawks in the woods behind the house. Mr. and Mrs.
          Bishop turn quickly toward the sound. Mrs. Bishop looks
          tense. Becky's garbled voice says over a tinny speaker:
           BECKY (V.O.)
           Scout Master Ward confirms they've had no
           luck. They're going home for the --
          There is a rustling and the sound of a car door opening --
          then the radio cuts off. Mr. Bishop frowns. He shouts:
           MR. BISHOP
           Who's there?
          Captain Sharp emerges slowly from the dark, tangled in a
          bramble, hopping slowly on one foot as he unwinds a root from
          around his ankle. He smiles awkwardly and says:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Good evening. Sorry to startle you. I was
                          JUST --
           MR. BISHOP
           What are you doing here? Nobody called
           the police.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I know, that's what I'm saying. The
           search party's not over yet. In other
                          WORDS --
           MRS. BISHOP
           Suzy's missing, too! Go find her.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           OK. Where'd she --
           MR. BISHOP
           Wait for me.
          Mr. Bishop disappears into the house. Captain Sharp and Mrs.
          Bishop exchange an uncertain look.
          Captain Sharp pans a spot-light back and forth in the
          darkness while he steers the car. The lamp has a short in it
          and flickers with each bump. Mr. Bishop rides in the
          passenger seat. He stares ahead down the road and says to
           MR. BISHOP
           How can we help her? She's got so many
           problems. It's getting worse.
          Mr. Bishop looks strangely to Captain Sharp. He asks:
           MR. BISHOP
           Whose fault is it?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I don't know, but just for the record:
           ninety-five percent of all runaways
           return home within six hours. That
           doesn't do you any good right now. It's
           just a statistic -- but in all likelihood
           Suzy's probably hiding in the closet at
           her best friend's house playing Chinese
           Checkers at this very moment, as we
           MR. BISHOP
           She doesn't have any friends.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
                          (LONG PAUSE)
           How's Laura?
           MR. BISHOP
           How's Laura?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Mrs. Bishop, I mean.
           MR. BISHOP
           I don't understand.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Is she upset?
          Mr. Bishop looks baffled and disgusted. He throws his hands
          into the air. He looks away and shakes his head. Silence.
          Captain Sharp wiggles some wires.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I got to get this spot-light fixed.
          Captain Sharp and Mr. Bishop come to a stop and get out of
          the station wagon. They look dejected. The screen door bangs
          open, and Mrs. Bishop quickly descends the front steps with a
          open shoebox full of letters in her hands. She says
          breathlessly, shouting:
           MRS. BISHOP
           She has a pen pal! It's very intimate!
           They planned this together!
          Captain Sharp takes one of the letters and studies it. He
          says to himself:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Sam Shakusky. That's my escaped Khaki
           Scout. His family died.
          Mr. Bishop takes a handful of the letters and flips through
          them. He stops suddenly. He looks horrified.
           MR. BISHOP
           Holy Christ. What am I looking at?
          A small painting on construction paper of a naked girl
          stepping into a bathtub. She wears a flower in her hair.
          Mrs. Bishop continues to shout as she explains:
           MRS. BISHOP
           He does watercolors! Mostly landscapes,
           but a few nudes!
          Lionel, Murray, and Rudy watch from a downstairs window.
          Lionel takes a bite from a bowl of melting ice cream. Mr.
          Bishop stares at the painting. He squints at it and asks
           MR. BISHOP
           She sit for this?
          Captain Sharp and Mrs. Bishop look over Mr. Bishop's
          shoulder. Captain Sharp says calmly:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           What does he say?
          The history of Sam and Suzy's correspondence.
          Sam, dressed in a greasy jump-suit, writes at a work bench in
          a garage while six teenagers take apart carburetors behind
          him. They are his foster brothers. Sam reads in voice-over:
           SAM (V.O.)
           Dear Suzy, You have a superb voice. You
           were my favorite animal in the program,
           by far. Please, find enclosed --
          Suzy writes at a small desk on the upstairs landing while
          Lionel and Murray play a loud duet on a red piano behind her.
          (Rudy turns the pages of the sheet music.) Suzy reads in
           SUZY (V.O.)
           Dear Sam, Thank you very much. I got
           replaced as the raven because I yelled at
           Mrs. Lynn. After that I was only a blue
           jay, but --
          Sam works in an alley emptying garbage from several small
          trash cans into a larger one. Mr. Billingsley watches
          television in a window, smoking a cigarette. He points to a
          crumpled wrapper on the ground. Sam picks it up.
           SAM (V.O.)
           Dear Suzy, I am sorry your brothers are
           so selfish. Maybe they will grow out of
           it. Sometimes people do things without
           knowing the reasons for --
          Suzy reads a book called Disappearance of the 6th Grade.
          There is an illustration on the cover of a school-teacher
          levitating at the front of her classroom. There are several
          watercolor pictures taped to the wall behind her. Most are
          landscapes of small-town vacant lots. One is a swimming girl
          in a bikini.
           SUZY (V.O.)
           Dear Sam, You are an excellent painter,
           especially trees and telephone poles. Is
           the girl in the water supposed to be me?
           My favorite color is --
          Sam stands in pajamas staring blankly, eyes wide, at a dog
          house in flames next to a rusty swing-set. A dachsund sits
          next to him, also watching. Mrs. Billingsley comes running
          out of the house with a fire extinguisher.
           SAM (V.O.)
           Dear Suzy, I accidentally built a fire
           while I was sleep-walking. I have no
           memory of this, but my foster parents
           think I am lying. Unfortunately, it is --
          Suzy stands in the kitchen looking out through a pane of
          glass with a hole smashed in the middle of it. Mrs. Bishop is
          next to her with her hair hanging over the sink while the two
          of them carefully pick bits of glass out of it.
           SUZY (V.O.)
           Dear Sam, I am in trouble again because I
           threw a rock through the window. My mother
           still has glass in her hair. Also --
          Five of Sam's foster brothers watch calmly as the sixth
          throws Sam against the wall then jumps on top of him, pinning
          his arms to the floor while Sam struggles crazily.
           SAM (V.O.)
           Dear Suzy, I have been trying very hard
           to make friends, but I feel people do not
           like my personality. In fact, I can
           understand why they might --
          A classroom of sixth graders watches in a panic as Suzy
          throttles one of her classmates. The classmate flails and
          grimaces as she is strangled.
           SUZY (V.O.)
           Dear Sam, Now I am getting suspended
           because I got in a fight with Molly. She
           says I go berserk. Our principal is
           against me. Why do --
          Sam does sit-ups on a hard mattress in a basement room lined
          with bunks. He counts out the repetitions under his breath.
          There is a small, black and white photograph of a man and
          woman at their wedding tacked to the wall above him.
           SAM (V.O.)
           Dear Suzy, I know your parents hurt your
           feelings, but they still love you. That
           is more important. If they --
          Suzy stands in a doorway screaming at her family while they
          watch wearily from the dinner table with forks and knives in
          their hands.
           SUZY (V.O.)
           Dear Sam, I do think you should think of
           their faces every day, even if it makes
           you sad. It is too bad they did not leave
           you more pictures of themselves. Can you --
          Sam writes in his bunk crouched beneath a blanket with a
          Khaki Scout flashlight pointed at his paper.
           SAM (V.O.)
           Dear Suzy, Here is my plan.
          Suzy writes in her bed crouched beneath a quilt with a
          plastic lantern glowing beside her.
           SUZY (V.O.)
           Dear Sam, My answer is yes.
          A sheet of wide-ruled yellow paper which reads in a boy's
                         PENCILED SCRAWL:
           SAM (V.O.)
           Dear Suzy, When?
          A sheet of pink stationary which reads in a girl's red felt-
                         TIP CURSIVE:
           SUZY (V.O.)
           Dear Sam, Where?
                         CUT TO:
          Suzy kneeling in the dark, crouched in front of an upper
          window with the shoebox of letters beside her. Outside, the
          woods are black beyond a moonlit field.
           SAM (V.O.)
           Dear Suzy, Walk four hundred yards due
           north from your house to the dirt path
           which has not got any name on it. Turn
           right and follow to the end.
          Suzy raises her binoculars to her eyes.
           SAM (V.O.)
           I will meet you in the meadow.
          The next morning. The end of the path cut through the high
          grass where Sam and Suzy met the day before. Captain Sharp,
          Scout Master Ward, Mrs. Bishop, and Becky stand in two groups
          talking. Gadge and Skotak stretch a string with ribbons tied
          to it from stake to stake marking a perimeter. Lazy-Eye walks
          with the wire-haired terrier pulling at its leash. Other
          scouts search the field and scan the horizon.
          Captain Sharp's station wagon and Redford's motorcycle are
          parked in the dirt.
          Mr. Bishop stands off to the side by himself poking at the
          ground with a stick. He has two black eyes, and half his face
          is swollen and purple. Scout Master Ward asks Becky quietly:
           What happened to him?
           I'm not sure. I think he went searching
           in the dark.
          Mr. Bishop says loudly without looking up from the ground:
           MR. BISHOP
           She stole the batteries out of my
          Scout Master Ward looks at Becky and grimaces. Becky raises
          an eyebrow. Mrs. Bishop stands next to Captain Sharp. They
          move slightly away from the others. Captain Sharp whispers
          quickly, almost inaudibly:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I think he's onto us.
           MRS. BISHOP
           Of course, he is.
          Captain Sharp looks surprised and defensive. He whispers
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Of course, he is?
           MRS. BISHOP
           Of course, he is.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Why aren't we worried about that, then?
           MRS. BISHOP
           I am.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Well, I didn't know. Or, anyway, I
           thought I was wrong. Did you hit him?
           MRS. BISHOP
           No. He fell in a ditch.
          Nickleby pops up from below the tall grass and thrusts an
          empty can of cat food into the air. He shouts excitedly:
           Cat food! I think it's a clue.
          The group quickly gathers around Nickleby. Mr. Bishop
          snatches the can out of his hand and examines it. He says
           MR. BISHOP
           That's her.
          Mr. Bishop throws the can away over his shoulder and walks
          off with his hands in his pockets. Nickleby runs after the
          can and picks it up again. Mr. Bishop continues down the
          hill. Scout Master Ward watches him. He asks Mrs. Bishop,
           Where's he going?
           MRS. BISHOP
           I don't know.
          Mrs. Bishop follows Mr. Bishop. Captain Sharp turns to the
          rest of the group and says briskly:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           All right. We know they're together. We
           know they're within a certain radius of
           this spot. I'm declaring the case with
           the county right now. Until help arrives:
          Captain Sharp looks to Scout Master Ward as he points to
          various scouts and divides the group into teams:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I'm deputizing the little guy, the skinny
           one, and the kid with the curly hair to
           come with me in the station wagon. Randy,
           you drop-in and head up-river with the
           rest of your troop, then split-up on
           foot. Becky, call Jed and tell him to
           circle over this end of the island and
           fly low.
                         CUT TO:
          A binocular shot of the seaplane flying in a pattern. It
          banks sharply. The binocular shot tilts down. Far below, in
          the distance, Captain Sharp's station wagon rumbles along a
          dirt road through the woods. The binocular shot pans wide. On
          the side of the river, Scout Master Ward's motorboat stops.
          Two scouts, tiny figures, pull the camouflage net off the
          hidden canoe.
          EXT. HIGH RIDGE. DAY
          Suzy watches through her binoculars while Sam crouches beside
          her. They are hidden behind a pile of rocks. Suzy says
           They found the canoe.
           (angry at himself)
           Rats! I should've put more pine needles
           on it. Let's go. We're almost there.
          Sam lifts his backpack onto his back and slings his air-rifle
          over his arm. Suzy picks up her suitcases and puts the kitten
          on her shoulder. They walk down a narrow path through a
          thicket. They emerge into a small clearing.
          Sam and Suzy stop in their tracks.
          Deluca, Nickleby, Panagle, Izod, and Lazy-Eye stand in a row
          along the edge of the woods ahead of them. Deluca brandishes
          his hunting knife. Nickleby, Izod, and Lazy-Eye point their
          bows and arrows. Panagle holds his walking stick weapon. The
          wire-haired terrier strains growling at the end of his leash.
          Deluca jerks him back. The kitten cowers. The sound of a
          motorcycle guns, and Redford bursts through the trees, pops a
          wheelie, and skids to a stop. He lifts his goggles.
          The motor idles. Sam says finally:
           What do you creeps want?
          Redford shrugs and answers with a callous smile:
           We're looking for you.
           Because you're a fugitive.
           No, I'm not. Didn't you get my letter of
           resignation? I quit the Khaki Scouts.
           You're still in uniform.
          Pause. Sam quickly takes off his shirt and throws it aside.
           Well, it doesn't matter, anyway. You
           don't have that authority. We've been
           deputized. Now are you going to come
           along peacefully or not?
          Sam takes a deep breath. He pleads:
           Listen to some reason: I don't like you.
           You don't like me. Why don't you stupid
           idiots just let us disappear?
           It's tempting, but I can't allow it.
          Deluca spits on the ground. He says to Suzy:
           You shouldn't be friends with him.
           Why not?
           Because he's crazy.
           Maybe you just don't know him.
           We know him a lot better than you. He's
           emotionally disturbed because his family
           died. Nickleby, tie him up.
          Nickleby takes a step forward with his bow and arrow pointed
          and ready. Suzy looks furious. Sam flips his air-rifle off
          his shoulder with a twirl. He points it at Redford and
          Nickleby. Nickleby hesitates. Sam says darkly:
           Do not cross this stick.
          Sam motions to a twig on the ground in front of him. Silence.
           You're doomed, Shakusky.
          Redford revs the motor, pops the clutch, and races across the
          clearing toward Sam and Suzy. The rest of the troop
          converges, yelling crazily.
                         CUT TO:
          The wide canyon echoing with shouts, screams, and a small
          explosion. One by one, Deluca, Nickleby, Panagle, Izod, and
          Lazy-Eye come running out of the trees and down the hill.
          Finally, Redford hobbles after them, limping and groaning and
          clutching his side.
                         CUT TO:
          Redford's charred, partially demolished motorcycle smoldering
          in the branches of a tree.
          Suzy stands on the edge of the ravine staring at the pair of
          bloody scissors in her hand. She looks shaken. Sam takes the
          scissors, cleans them with his fingers, and hands them back
          to Suzy. He says gently:
           It was him or us.
          Suzy nods. She turns slowly away. Her eyes widen.
           Oh, no.
          Suzy points. The wire-haired terrier lies on his back on the
          ground with an arrow sticking out between his shoulder
          blades. The kitten licks at the wound. Sam and Suzy run over
          to the wounded dog. Sam crouches down, gently presses the
          kitten away, and says bleakly:
           They got Snoopy through the neck.
          Suzy has tears in her eyes. She slides her hands under the
          wire-haired terrier's body. She begins to hyperventilate as
                         SHE SAYS:
           He needs a doctor.
          Sam puts his finger to the wire-haired terrier's neck. He
                         SAYS SADLY:
           No, he doesn't. He needs a morgue.
           (trying to catch her breath)
           He's losing blood. Hurry. Where do we go?
          Suzy lifts the bleeding dog into her arms. Sam grabs her by
          the shoulders. He locks eyes with her and says with grit and
           Suzy. Look at me. Snoopy's not going to
           make it.
           (starting to cry)
           Don't say that.
           They're after us. We got to move.
           (raising her voice)
           He's dying! We can't just leave him!
           It's too late! He's already gone!
           Stop yelling at me!
          Sam slaps Suzy in the face. She falls silent. He says slowly:
           I'm sorry I had to do that, but you're
           panicking. The first rule in any
           emergency is you never --
          Suzy drops the wire-haired terrier which hits the ground with
          a thud. She slaps Sam back with a huge, roundhouse smack. Sam
          falls over sideways. Suzy stands over him.
           Don't ever do that again. No one's
           allowed to slap me.
          Sam stands up and dusts himself off. He and Suzy stare down
          at the lifeless animal. Suzy says quietly:
           You're right. He's dead.
          Sam reaches into a side-picket of his back-pack and takes out
          an army-shovel. He assembles it. Suzy says hopefully:
           Was he a good dog?
          Pause. Sam shrugs. He says distantly, even cosmically:
           Who's to say -- but he didn't deserve to
          Suzy slowly wraps her arm around Sam's shoulder. They squeeze
          each other tightly. Sam sighs. He begins to dig.
          Captain Sharp speeds bouncing down a winding dirt road. Lazy-
          Eye, Deluca, and Gadge sit next to him crowded into the
          passenger seat. Lazy-Eye yells into the hand-set of the
                         POLICE RADIO:
           She stabbed Redford in the back with
           lefty scissors!
          A voice responds over the speaker:
           JED (V.O.)
           Repeat that, please? Over.
          Captain Sharp grabs the hand-set out of Lazy-Eye's hand. He
          shouts into it:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Puncture wound. Lower lumbar. Make room
           for a stretcher in the cockpit!
          Redford is lying on his stomach on a towel in the rear of the
          vehicle. Scout Master Ward kneels next to him pressing his
          hand firmly into the middle of his back. There is significant
          blood. Redford moans loudly. Scout Master Ward reassures him:
           You're going to be OK. Thank goodness,
           she missed the artery. Bite on this.
          Scout Master Ward puts a pencil in Redford's teeth. Redford
          grimaces, crunching it. In the back seat, the rest of the
          troop excitedly re-cap:
           I tried to chop him, but he dodged my
           Who else got hit?
           Not me. I ran away when the girl went
           He's got great marksmanship. He shot
           Deluca in both arms.
          Skotak points to the front seat. Deluca sits glumly in
          silence. He has numerous small welts all over his arms. Gadge
                         SAYS SUDDENLY:
           Where's Snoopy?
          Captain Sharp's station wagon skids to a stop next to his
          office while the seaplane pulls up to the dock as Mr. and
          Mrs. Bishop approach pedalling furiously on bicycles. Mr.
          Bishop wears boating shoes. Captain Sharp and Scout Master
          Ward jump out of the car. Skotak and Gadge help them remove
          Redford on a stretcher from the back of the station wagon.
          Mr. Bishop struggles with his kick-stand. He shouts:
           MR. BISHOP
           What happened? Who's that? Why's he
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Clear the dock, Edgar!
          Captain Sharp motions for the two old fishermen to get out of
          the way. He and Scout Master Ward run with the stretcher onto
          the dock. Mrs. Bishop is frantic:
           MRS. BISHOP
           Is Suzy with you?
           No, she's in the woods with Shakusky.
          Gadge points toward the hills. A man wearing a jumpsuit and
          aviator sunglasses stands next to the seaplane. He is Jed. He
          shouts as the stretcher approaches:
           Where'm I going?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           The infirmary at Fort Lebanon. We'll be
           right behind you.
          Captain Sharp motions for Skotak, Gadge, and Lazy-eye to help
          Jed load the stretcher into the small cockpit. He tosses a
          set of keys to Scout Master Ward and says:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Warm up the motor. I'll be right back.
          Scout Master Ward takes the keys and starts untying the
          police launch. Captain Sharp heads toward his office. Mr.
          Bishop says firmly:
           MR. BISHOP
           Hold it right there. You're not leaving
           this island. Our daughter's been abducted
           by one these beige lunatics.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Walt, it's very clear: the two of them
           conspired in this together.
           Don't worry, Mr. Bishop. She'll be safe.
           Sam's got excellent wilderness skills.
          Mr. Bishop wheels on Scout Master Ward. He explodes:
           MR. BISHOP
           Why can't you control your scouts?
          Scout Master Ward recoils. He says quietly, troubled:
           I'm trying.
          Mr. Bishop takes off his shoe and throws it at Scout Master
          Ward. Scout Master Ward ducks, and the shoe bounces off his
          back. Captain Sharp blocks Mr. Bishop.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
          Mr. Bishop scuffles with Captain Sharp. Mrs. Bishop jerks him
          backwards and shouts:
           MRS. BISHOP
           Stop it, Walt!
          Mr. Bishop faces Mrs. Bishop and Captain Sharp, breathing
          heavily. Scout Master Ward looks depressed. Jed, Gadge,
          Skotak, and Redford watch frozen from a gangplank alongside
          the seaplane.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I do blame him --
           (pointing to Scout Master Ward)
           -- but I also blame myself and both of
           you. With all due respect: you can't let
           your children stab people.
           MRS. BISHOP
           What are you talking about?
           She's violent, Mrs. Bishop. Look.
          Scout Master Ward shows Mrs. Bishop the blood all over his
          hands and uniform. Mrs. Bishop looks confused.
           MRS. BISHOP
           I don't get it. Were there witnesses?
           Of course. It's assault.
           MRS. BISHOP
           I beg your pardon. Are you a lawyer?
           No, ma'am, but --
           MRS. BISHOP
           Well, I am!
          Captain Sharp gently draws Mrs. Bishop away by the shoulder.
          He links arms with her as he tries to placate the group:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Easy does it. Calm down, Laura.
           MR. BISHOP
           Stay away from my wife.
          Mr. Bishop pushes Captain Sharp away from Mrs. Bishop into
          Scout Master Ward. Scout Master Ward lunges at Mr. Bishop but
          is intercepted by Captain Sharp and Mrs. Bishop. They shout
          Dammit! Christ! Shit! Jesus!
          At this moment, a voice interjects from the shore:
           NARRATOR (O.S.)
           Excuse me! Excuse me! Excuse me, Captain
          Captain Sharp, Scout Master Ward, and Mr. and Mrs. Bishop
          stop fighting and turn around at once. They see: the
          narrator. He stands at the foot of the dock holding a journal
          with rubber bands wrapped around it. They all stare at him
          blankly. He continues:
           As some of you know, I taught Sam for the
           cartography Accomplishment Patch. He's a
           smart boy, and he expressed a keen
           interest in the history of the island's
           indigenous peoples. In particular, I
           recall his fascination with the idea of
           retracing the original path of the old
           Chickchaw harvest migration.
          Long pause. Everyone looks utterly perplexed. The propeller
          of the seaplane starts up, and they all shield their eyes
          from the blast of wind and dust. The narrator hesitates. He
          yells over the noise:
           What I'm getting at is this: I think I
           know where they're going.
          The narrator removes the rubber bands from his journal.
          A carefully hand-drafted nautical chart. A cove is marked
          with a red arrow and the caption Mile 3.25 Tidal Inlet.
          The portable record player. Suzy's fingers place the needle
          onto a spinning disc.
          A small cove enclosed by a low, rocky cliff. It forms an
          almost complete circle and is overgrown with vines, flowers,
          and branches. A thin channel leads out to the ocean. The sand
          on the shore is white, and the water is perfectly clear and
          crowded with shells at the bottom. Birds echo and fly from
          tree to tree.
          Sam's and Suzy's luggage is piled on the beach. The kitten
          wanders, exploring. The lid of the portable record player is
          open. The voice of Leonard Bernstein says over the speaker:
           RECORD PLAYER (V.O.)
           Onto the bird-house, where every kind of
           bird imaginable is whirling and wheeling
           around. This is a real acrobatic act for
           our gifted young flute player, Paula
          As they listen, Sam and Suzy take off their shoes and socks
          and run in opposite directions around the edge of the cove.
          They each climb up a rock over the water. They look at each
          other across the lagoon. They both laugh. Suzy shouts,
           This is weird.
           I know!
          Sam takes off his coon-skin cap and throws it aside. Suzy
          removes her cardigan and drops it on the ground. Sam strips
          off his uniform down to his white briefs. Suzy take off
          everything except her underwear and a training bra. They
          throw their clothes into the water. Sam yells:
           On three!
          Suzy immediately counts very quickly. They both scream as
          they leap into the water. They swim toward each other,
          laughing and shouting.
                         CUT TO:
          A clothesline hung with Sam's and Suzy's wet clothes swaying
          like flags and snapping in the wind. The tent has been
          pitched on a low, sandy plateau close to the water. Two lines
          of shells mark a path to the entrance. A long stick is jammed
          into the ground with a flickering safety-candle stuck into
          the Y at the top. The kitten is asleep.
          Sam sits on a folding stool in front of a portable easel. He
          dips his brush into a tin cup and paints. Suzy poses
          stretched out and propped up on one arm. She adjusts herself
           I like it here, but I don't like the
           Me, neither.
           Mile 3.25 Tidal Inlet. It's got no ring
           to it.
           Let's change it. What should it be?
           Let me think for a minute.
          Sam continues to paint while Suzy thinks.
                         CUT TO:
          A binocular shot of a deep blue, star-filled sky.
          Suzy lies on her back on a flat rock in the middle of the
          cove looking up into the night. Sam wades out to her and
          climbs up beside her.
           I made you some jewelry.
          Sam holds up two dead, shimmering, opalescent beetles with
          fish-hooks threaded into their shells. Suzy looks enchanted.
           Are your ears pierced?
                         CUT TO:
          Inside the tent, lit by a lantern. Sam clenches his teeth as
          he forces one of the fish-hooks through Suzy's earlobe. Suzy
          screams murderously. Sam releases her. The beetle dangles
          neatly. A line of blood runs down the side of Suzy's neck.
          Sam holds up a little mirror. Suzy nods.
           It's pretty. Do the other one.
          Sam switches to Suzy's other earlobe. She resumes her
                         CUT TO:
          Sam and Suzy standing on the beach listening to the French
          singer's record. They face each other, bobbing their heads
          and tilting awkwardly to the music. Suzy eventually begins to
          dance. Sam does something vaguely like the Twist. They press
          against each other and kiss. Suzy says quietly:
           It feels hard.
           Do you mind?
           I like it.
           Tilt your head sideways.
          Sam and Suzy kiss again. Sam pushes his hands through Suzy's
          hair and draws it back behind her ears. Suzy whispers:
           You can touch my chest.
          Sam slides his hand up under the training bra and presses it
          onto Suzy's breast.
           They're going to grow more.
          Sam nods. He looks to be in a trance.
                         CUT TO:
          Sam and Suzy sitting on a tree branch over the water eating
          raisins from Sam's hand. Suzy has flowers in her hair. She
          looks down into the water with her binoculars.
           Why do you always use binoculars?
          Suzy thinks for minute. She says finally:
           It helps me see things closer. Even if
           they're not very far away. I pretend it's
           my magic power.
           That sounds like poetry. Poems don't
           always have to rhyme, you know. They're
           just supposed to be creative.
          Suzy gives Sam the binoculars. He points them at her and
           What do you want to be? When you grow up.
           I don't know. I want to go on adventures,
           I think. Not get stuck in one place. How
           about you?
           Go on adventures, too. Not get stuck,
           too. I guess that sounds almost like I'm
           just repeating what you just said, but I
           couldn't think of anything as good as it.
           On the other hand, maybe we'll get blown
           up by an atom bomb. You can't predict the
           exact future.
           That's true.
           It's possible I may wet the bed, by the
           way. Later, I mean.
           I wish I didn't have to mention it, but
           just in case. I don't want to make you be
           Of course, I won't.
           Some people frown on these problems.
          Suzy nods. She holds Sam's hand. She points to the scorpion
          brooch pinned to Sam's shirt.
           What's that one for?
          Sam looks at the brooch. He shakes his head.
           It's not an accomplishment. I inherited
           it from my mother. It's actually not
           meant for a male to wear -- but I don't
           give a damn.
          Suzy nods thoughtfully. Pause.
           Are your foster parents still mad at you?
           For getting in trouble so much.
           I don't think so. We're getting to know
           each other better. I feel like I'm in a
           family now. Not like yours, but similar
           to one.
           I always wished I was an orphan. Most of
           my favorite characters are. I think your
           lives are more special.
          Sam frowns. Tears suddenly well-up in his eyes. He shakes his
           I love you, but you don't know what
           you're talking about.
          Long pause. Suzy says genuinely:
           I love you, too.
                         CUT TO:
          A campfire burns in front of the tent. Sam lies on his back
          on one of the bedrolls smoking his pipe while Suzy sits
          Indian-style next to him. She reads aloud from a book called
          The Light of Seven Matchsticks. There is an illustration on
          the cover of a child's hand extinguishing a little flame. A
          ribbon of smoke curls between its fingers.
           The flashlight's beam drew a moon through
           the black across the attic and settled on
           a gap in the base-board. A mouse-hole, no
           bigger than a pocket-watch. Eric crouched
           on his flat feet and placed his hand in
           front of the tiny opening. "It's windy,"
           he said. "Like someone in there's blowing
           on my fingers." Christy rolled her eyes
           and sighed a sigh. He's right again, she
           thought. Little brothers drive people
          Suzy looks to Sam to see if he is still awake. Sam nods and
          signals for Suzy to continue. Suzy turns the page and reads
           Part Two.
                         CUT TO:
          The next morning. Sam and Suzy are asleep with their arms
          wrapped around each other inside the tent. They wear only
          their underwear. The sound of an airplane approaches. Sam's
          eyes open. The noise buzzes by loudly overhead. Suzy sits up.
          Sam scrambles to his feet, unzips the flaps of the tent, and
          looks out. Suzy crouches beside him, holding onto his leg.
                         THEY SEE:
          Captain Sharp standing on the beach fifteen feet away. Scout
          Master Ward waits behind him with Gadge, Skotak, and Lazy-
          Eye. Mr. and Mrs. Bishop stride up out of the water. Mr.
          Bishop looks incensed. They are wet to the waist. The police
          launch is moored in the lagoon. Two larger boats with St.
          Jack Wood Fire Brigade printed on their hulls float further
          away. Men in red caps stand on their decks.
          Suzy pulls Sam back inside. She zips up the tent again. She
          kisses Sam. Mr. Bishop hollers:
           MR. BISHOP
           Suzy! Get out here!
          Mr. Bishop grabs hold of the entire tent by the top and rips
          it up out of the ground, uprooting the stakes which go
          flying. This reveals:
          Sam and Suzy, half-naked, entwined, kissing.
          Mr. and Mrs. Bishop both freeze. Sam and Suzy look up to
          them. Mr. Bishop growls and roars at them ferociously like a
          monster. Sam and Suzy look horrified. Mr. Bishop's face
          suddenly drains of all emotion. Pause. Mrs. Bishop commands
          Sam and Suzy:
           MRS. BISHOP
           Put your clothes on. Both of you.
          Sam and Suzy remain perfectly still. Mrs. Bishop grabs Suzy
          by the arm and jerks her to her feet. Sam and Suzy hang onto
          each other. Mrs. Bishop slaps Suzy with a whack. Sam lets go,
          and Suzy is gone.
          Scout Master Ward comes over to Sam sadly and hands him his
          uniform. Sam takes it. Scout Master Ward turns to the other
          scouts, claps his hands twice, and says:
           Strike this camp.
          Sam starts putting on his socks. Captain Sharp watches him.
          Captain Sharp drives his boat along the coast with a grim
          look on his face. Suzy rides in the back with Mr. and Mrs.
          Bishop. Sam rides in the front with the other scouts. An
          interrogation is in progress:
           How long were you planning to stay there?
           I don't know.
           You said ten days or less.
           That was a lie.
           Didn't you ever think about what would
           happen next?
           Not to my recollection.
           You're a traitor to our family.
           Good. I want to be.
          Scout Master Ward sits next to Captain Sharp. He shows him
          the air-mail envelope.
           What do I do about this?
          Captain Sharp shrugs. He says, resigned:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Give him his mail.
          Scout Master Ward turns to Sam. He holds out the envelope.
          Sam takes it. He opens it. He reads. Suzy watches him from
          across the boat. She calls out anxiously:
           What does it say?
           They can't invite me back.
           Why not?
           I gave them too much aggravation.
          Suzy stands up. She says as she starts across the boat:
           Let me read it.
          Sam holds out the note. Mr. Bishop pulls Suzy back down to
          her seat. He stands up, himself, and walks over to Sam. He
          takes him by the wrist and leads him to a small cabin. He
          opens the door and presses him forward. Sam stumbles down the
          steps and looks back. Mr. Bishop shuts the door. Captain
          Sharp glares at him. Suzy says icily:
           That's child abuse.
          Mr. Bishop returns to the back of the boat and sits down
          again. He gives Suzy a direct order:
           MR. BISHOP
           Be advised: the two of you will never see
           each other again. Those were your last
           words. Do you understand?
           I'd be careful if I were you. One of
           these days somebody's going to be pushed
           too far, and who knows what they're
           capable of.
           MR. BISHOP
           Is that a threat?
           It's a warning.
          Suzy looks from Captain Sharp to Mrs. Bishop and back to Mr.
          Bishop. Mr. Bishop falls silent.
           I wish I knew what makes you tick.
           MR. BISHOP
           I beg your pardon?
           MRS. BISHOP
           Please, terminate this conversation.
           MR. BISHOP
                          (TO LIONEL)
           She's saying that to me?
          Lionel shakes his head bitterly. Suzy stares out to sea.
          Scout Master Ward walks over to the cabin, opens the door,
          and goes inside.
          A small room with two bunks, two portholes, and a pile of
          ropes. Sam sits hunched over with his hands in his lap. He
          stares at the envelope. Scout Master Ward sits down across
          from him. He motions to the envelope and says quietly,
          pausing between each sentence:
           I'm sorry about this. I didn't know your
           situation. It's not on the register.
           How'd you lose your parents? I shouldn't
           ask that. Never mind. I wish we had time
           for an inspection back there. On the
           beach. I would've given you a
           "commendable". That was one of the best-
           pitched camp-sites I've ever seen.
          Sam does not respond. Scout Master Ward asks in a wounded
           You don't want to be a Khaki Scout
          Sam shakes his head.
          Becky sits at the switchboard with her head-phones on.
          Captain Sharp and Scout Master Ward sit behind her wearing
          their own sets of head-phones. There is a click on the other
          end of the line.
           OPERATOR (V.O.)
           Hello, Becky.
           Judy, I have your person-to-person from
           New Penzance.
           OPERATOR (V.O.)
           Go ahead, New Penzance.
                         CUT TO:
          Split-screen. On one side of the frame, we see Captain Sharp,
          Scout Master Ward, and Becky. On the other side, we see a
          fifty-year-old woman in a blue and white uniform pants-suit
          with a Salvation Army officer-style hat and a red ribbon tied
          in a bow around her neck. She is Social Services. She sits at
          a desk in a cinder block office. Guards and orderlies criss-
          cross in a bullet-proof window to a long, grey corridor
          behind her.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Hello? This is Captain Sharp.
          Social Services flips open a file-folder and picks up a ball-
          point pen. (She takes notes throughout the conversation.) She
          says into her telephone:
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Hello, Captain Sharp. This is Social
           Services. I'm calling in reference to Sam
           Shakusky, Ward of the State. I understand
           he's in your custody.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           That's correct.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           What's his condition? Has he suffered any
           injury or trauma of any kind?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           He's OK.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Very good. How do I get to you?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           The fastest way is by seaplane. Jed can
           bring you in with the mail.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           I'll come tomorrow morning, if that's
           acceptable to you. Is someone able to
           SOCIAL SERVICES (cont'd)
           provide reasonable care and nourishment
           for the boy until that time?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Is that a yes?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Very good. I'll contact you again before
           the end of the day.
          Social Services starts to hang up the telephone. Captain
          Sharp says abruptly:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Wait a second.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Social Services?
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Captain Sharp.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           What's going to happen to him?
          Pause. Social Services puts down her pen. She clasps her
          hands together in front of her. She says finally:
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Well, normally, we'd try to place him in
           another foster home, but that option is
           no longer available to us, in my opinion,
           with his case history -- which means
           he'll go to Juvenile Refuge.
          Captain Sharp exchanges a look with Scout Master Ward. Scout
          Master Ward interjects:
           What's that? An orphanage?
          Social Services frowns. She asks calmly:
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Who's speaking?
           This is Scout Master Ward.
          Social Services refers to a document in her file-folder. She
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Right. An orphanage -- but the first step
           is the admissions panel requires a
           psychological evaluation to determine
           whether or not the boy's a candidate for
           institutional treatment or electroshock
           therapy. Beyond that --
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Excuse me. Shock therapy? Why would that
           be necessary? He's not violent.
          Social Services picks up the document. She points to it.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           The report describes an assault with
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           That was the girl! Who did that.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Well, maybe she needs help, too -- but
           that's not our job. OK?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
                          (LONG PAUSE)
          Social Service hangs up the telephone. Becky pulls the cords
          out of their sockets. Scout Master Ward looks to Captain
          Sharp. Silence.
          Becky opens a tin of home-made lemon bars. Captain Sharp
          declines one. Scout Master Ward tries one. He looks
          completely enchanted.
          The living room. There is a wicker rocking chair, a vase
          filled with wilted wildflowers, and a portrait of some
          Pilgrims hanging over a stone fireplace. Lionel, Murray, and
          Rudy sit together on the floor playing Parchesi.
          Mr. Bishop lurches into the doorway, shirtless. He carries an
          open bottle of red wine with a glass in one hand and a long-
          handled woodsman's axe in the other.
           MR. BISHOP
           I'll be out back.
          Lionel, Murray, and Lionel look up from their game. Mr.
          Bishop hesitates. He seems slightly disoriented.
           MR. BISHOP
           I'm going to find a tree to chop down.
          Mr. Bishop exits. Pause. Lionel rolls a pair of dice.
          Old linoleum floor. Dark curtainless window. One bare light
          bulb. Suzy sits erect in the bathtub staring blankly into
          space. Mrs. Bishop washes her with a soapy sponge. Suzy's
          clothes and leather folder are in the corner with the kitten
          scratching at them.
           MRS. BISHOP
           I do know what you're feeling, Suzy-bean.
           I've had moments myself where I say: what
           am I doing here? Who made this decision?
           How could I allow myself to do something
           so stupid --
                          (WITH FEELING)
           -- and why is it still happening? We
           women are more emotional. You have to
                          REMEMBER --
          Suzy turns to Mrs. Bishop and interrupts:
           I hate you.
           MRS. BISHOP
           Don't say "hate".
           Why not? I mean it.
           MRS. BISHOP
           You think you mean it. In this moment.
           You're trying to hurt me.
           I know what you do with that sad, dumb
           police man. You go to bed with him.
          Mrs. Bishop looks stunned. She says quietly:
           MRS. BISHOP
           He's not dumb, but I guess he is kind of
           sad. Anyway, we shouldn't discuss that.
           It's not appropriate for me to even
           acknowledge what I already just said.
          Mrs. Bishop sees something sticking out of the leather
          folder. She pulls it out and stares at it. It is the "Coping
          with the Very Troubled Child" pamphlet. She looks to Suzy.
          Suzy looks away. Mrs. Bishop sighs deeply and says, on the
          verge of tears:
           MRS. BISHOP
           Poor Suzy. Why is everything so hard for
          Suzy starts to cry. She covers her face. Her voice breaks as
                         SHE SAYS:
           We're in love. We just want to be
           together. What's wrong with that?
          Mrs. Bishop puts her arms around Suzy. Suzy shakes, silently
          sobbing. Mrs. Bishop pulls some twigs and stems out of Suzy's
          hair. She studies the beetle earrings. She says wearily:
           MRS. BISHOP
           Oh, my God. How are we going to get these
           fish-hooks out?
          Captain Sharp cooks sausages on a skillet in a kitchenette.
          He has a bottle of beer in his hand. Sam sits waiting at a
          fold-out table with a glass of milk in front of him. He says
          without looking up:
           I admit we knew we'd get in trouble. That
           part's true. We knew people would be
           worried, and we still ran away, anyway --
           but something also happened which we
           didn't do on purpose. When we first met
           each other. Something happened to us.
          Captain Sharp stirs the sausages in the pan. He nods. He says
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I agree with you. That's eloquent. I
           can't argue against anything you're
           saying -- but I don't have to, because
           you're twelve years old.
          Captain Sharp brings the skillet to the table and serves
          three links onto one plate and three onto another. He sits
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Look, let's face it, you're probably a
           much more intelligent person than I am.
           In fact, I guarantee it -- but even smart
           kids sometimes stick their fingers in
           electrical sockets, if you see what I
           mean. It takes time to figure things out.
           It's been proven by history: all mankind
           makes mistakes. It's our job to try to
           protect you from the dangerous ones. If
           we can.
          Captain Sharp pours an inch of beer into a glass and slides
          it over to Sam.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           You want a slug?
          Sam nods. He and Captain Sharp both drink sips. Captain Sharp
          asks gently and sincerely:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           What's the rush? You've got your whole
           life in front of yourself. Ahead of you,
           I mean.
           Maybe so. Anyway, you're a bachelor.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           What does that have to do with it? So are
           That's true. Did you love someone ever?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Yes, I did.
           What happened?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           She didn't love me back.
          Sam considers this. Captain Sharp looks depressed. They start
          eating their sausages. Captain Sharp says quietly:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I'm sorry for your loss. Anyway, that's
           what people say.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           What happened?
           A drunk truck driver smashed into them.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Good grief.
          Silence. Captain Sharp refills both their beer glasses.
          Scout Master Ward sits on his cot in his pajamas again with a
          cigarette in his mouth. His tape recorder is recording. He
          says into the microphone:
           Scout Master's Log. September fourth.
          Scout Master Ward hesitates. He thinks for a minute. He takes
          a deep breath. He closes his eyes. He opens them again. He
          looks desperate. He looks up at the ceiling. He shakes his
          head. He presses stop. He kneels on the floor with his palms
          together and smokes.
          There is a slight commotion outside. Scout Master Ward
           Stow it, out there! I want to hear some
          The fort sixty feet above the camp. It is still under
          construction. The entire troop (with the exceptions of
          Redford and Sam) has gathered for a clandestine meeting. They
          all wear pajamas. Skotak stands on a balcony with his back to
          the group and his hands on a wooden railing.
           I heard he's going to reform school.
           I heard they're going to take out a piece
           of his brain and send him to an insane
           I like his girl.
           She's too scruffy for me.
           Supposedly, they got to third base.
           That's not true. He just felt her up.
                          (DEEPLY INTRIGUED)
           Over-shirt or under-shirt?
          Skotak slams his fist on the railing. Everyone looks
          startled. Skotak turns around to face the group. He says
           Damn us.
          The railing collapses behind Skotak, ripping part of a wall
          and a row of shingles off the structure as it falls away.
          There is a moment of silence before it hits the ground with a
          splintering thud. Skotak hesitates. He moves a half-step away
          from the edge. He continues:
           This troop has been very shabby to Field
           Mate Sam Shakusky. In fact, we've been a
           bunch of mean jerks. Why's he so
           unpopular? I admit, supposedly, he's
                          SKOTAK (CONT'D)
           emotionally disturbed -- but he's also a
           disadvantaged orphan. How would you feel?
          Skotak moves among the group, looking from face to face, as
                         HE ASKS:
           Nickleby? Deluca? Lazy-Eye?
           (from the heart)
          Skotak circles around the edge of the tree house. He says
                         WITH FEELING:
           He's a fellow Khaki Scout, and he needs
           our help. Are we man enough to give that?
           So part of his brain doesn't get removed
           out of him.
          Skotak stands still. He says mysteriously:
           They were prepared to die for each other
           out there.
          Silence. The other scouts begin to murmur to each other,
          shaking their heads, shrugging, whispering, and gesturing.
          Finally, Deluca looks up to Skotak.
           What do you need?
           For starters? Three yards of chicken
           wire, some ripped-up newspapers, and a
           bucket of wheatpaste.
          A thick tree has been chopped almost completely through its
          trunk. For some reason, it remains standing. Mr. Bishop sits
          on the ground leaning against it. He breathes heavily. The
          axe rests across his lap.
          A twig snaps. Mr. Bishop looks up, listening. Pause. He
          drinks a sip of wine.
          In the background, on the other side of the lawn, five small
          silhouettes run silently in a row away from the house into
          the trees on the left. A moment later, one taller silhouette
          rides a bicycle silently away from the house into the trees
          on the right.
          Captain Sharp sits on the hood of his station wagon. Mrs.
          Bishop leans against it with her bicycle in front of her.
          They smoke cigarettes. Captain Sharp says sadly:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           In other words, it's over.
           MRS. BISHOP
           I guess so. For the moment.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Until further notice.
           MRS. BISHOP
           That's right.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I understand.
           MRS. BISHOP
           I've got to do better. For everybody.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Except me.
           MRS. BISHOP
           Except you.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Well, I hope you can. I think you will.
           You're doing the right thing.
          Pause. Captain Sharp suddenly slides his hand inside Mrs.
          Bishop's shirt onto her breast and simultaneously kisses her
          -- then just as suddenly gets into his car and starts the
          engine. Mrs. Bishop hesitates. She reaches inside the window
          and puts her hand on the top of Captain Sharp's head. She
          says, worried:
           MRS. BISHOP
           Who know what's going to happen, Duffy?
           I'll probably see you tomorrow.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           No, you won't.
          Silence. The motor idles. Captain Sharp says distantly:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I admire them, you know? There's a purity
           to it. I only feel bad because they both
           seem like such unhappy, lonely, miserable
           people -- but maybe that's romantic.
           MRS. BISHOP
           I don't see it that way.
          Captain Sharp puts the car into gear and drives off. Mrs.
          Bishop finishes her cigarette. She gets on her bicycle and
          rides away.
          A burning match drops down into the fireplace near the foot
          of a bunk where Sam lies sleeping. He has the sheet pulled up
          to his chin, but his toes stick out. He opens one eye. Dust
          descends and settles. Something scrapes and scratches. The
          flame burns out.
          Sam slides slowly off the mattress and creeps across the
          floor. He crouches in front of the fireplace. He flicks on a
          scout flashlight and sees:
          The end of a hanging rope.
          Sam leans quickly into the fireplace and looks straight up,
          shining his flashlight. Skotak is looking down at him from
          the top of the chimney. He puts his finger to his lips. Sam
                         WHISPERS SHARPLY:
           Get out of my chimney.
           Listen to me. We're here for friendship.
           We're going to get you off this island.
                          (LONG PAUSE)
           No, thanks.
           Yes, thanks. This is an emergency rescue.
           It's worthless to me. There's no point.
           Not without Suzy.
          Skotak gestures for Sam to wait. He disappears from view. A
          moment later, Suzy's face appears at the top of the chimney,
          smiling toothily. Sam looks ecstatic.
           How'd you get here?
           They snuck me down the laundry chute and
           left a paper-maché dummy in my bed.
           Diversion tactics. Good thinking.
                         CUT TO:
          The next room. Captain Sharp sleeps in boxer shorts on the
          floor of the kitchenette in the dark. He snores quietly.
          Five mini-canoes race across a wide, choppy strait close to
          the open sea. Skotak, Deluca, Nickleby, Gadge, Lazy-Eye,
          Panagle, Roosevelt, Chef, and Izod paddle aggressively. We
          hear in voice-over:
           SAM (V.O.)
           Where we going?
           SKOTAK (V.O.)
           Fort Lebanon. My cousin Ben runs the
           Supply and Resources outpost for the
           Jubilee. He's a Falcon Scout,
           Legionnaire. Cousin Ben'll know what to
           SAM (V.O.)
           Can we trust him?
           SKOTAK (V.O.)
           Normally, I'd say no.
          Sam and Suzy ride in the back of the canoe that Skotak rows.
          Sam has his arms around Suzy's waist. The kitten is on her
          shoulder. Sam sees the portable record player among Suzy's
           Did you leave another note for Lionel?
           Not this time. He can't keep his trap
           shut. Besides, I'll probably never see
           him again.
           That's true.
                         CUT TO:
          A pebble beach below high dunes. Large waves sweep into the
          shore. Spray blows through the air. There is a black
          lighthouse on a rocky point in the distance. The narrator
          stands at the water's edge holding a meteorologist's
          measuring stick. He braces himself against the gusting winds.
          He speaks to the camera:
           This is the island of St. Jack Wood,
           extending far north from Land's End along
           the deep-water channel that leads to
           Broken Rock. A low flood-plain separates
           the beach from the town-ship above. A
           small but prosperous community.
          The narrator takes out a pocket barometer. He reads it. He
                         SAYS GRAVELY:
           The barometer reads twenty-seven inches
           and dropping. Strong winds, as you can
           see, already at twenty-two knots.
           (checks his watch)
           The time is now four thirty-five A.M.
          The narrator walks quickly out of the shot. The five canoes
          land on the beach with the tide. Sam, Suzy, Skotak, and the
          rest of the troop quickly jump out and drag the boats up the
          The room is black. Mr. and Mrs. Bishop lie in separate single
          beds side-by-side. They both stare at the ceiling. The
          windows rattle, the walls creak, and trees sway outside.
          Long pause. Mrs. Bishop whispers:
           MRS. BISHOP
           Did you file the motion for continuance?
           Peabody vs. Henderson.
           MR. BISHOP
           It was sustained.
           MRS. BISHOP
           MR. BISHOP
           Did the judge consider your application
           for leniency? Rogers vs. Yentob.
           MRS. BISHOP
           He granted it.
           MR. BISHOP
          Silence. Mrs. Bishop's voice breaks as she says quietly:
           MRS. BISHOP
           I'm sorry, Walt.
           MR. BISHOP
           It's not your fault. Which injuries are
           you apologizing for? Specifically.
           MRS. BISHOP
           Specifically? Whichever ones still hurt.
           MR. BISHOP
           Half of those were self-inflicted.
          Mrs. Bishop shakes her head and smiles with tears on her
          face. A powerful blast of wind shakes the room. A night-light
          blinks. Mr. Bishop has a lump in his throat as he says:
           MR. BISHOP
           I hope the roof flies off, and I get
           sucked up into space. You'll be better
           off without me.
           MRS. BISHOP
           Stop feeling sorry for yourself.
           MR. BISHOP
          Mr. and Mrs. Bishop look across at each other in the dark.
          Mrs. Bishop says desperately:
           MRS. BISHOP
           We're all they've got, Walt.
          Mr. Bishop takes a deep breath. He says finally, with a
                         DAWNING REALIZATION:
           MR. BISHOP
           It's not enough.
          Flashlight and lantern flames flicker over the jagged walls.
          Skotak is curled in a blanket on a high rock. Gadge is tucked
          into a sleeping bag under a ledge. The troop nestle on rocks
          and ledges in bedrolls and sleeping bags all around the deep
          Sam lies on his back on one of the bedrolls smoking his pipe
          while Suzy sits Indian-style next to him. She reads aloud
          from a book called Annabelle's Midnight. There is an
          illustration on the cover of a blonde girl climbing out a
          window onto a trellis with fireflies circling around her.
           "-- but I'm not going," said Barnaby
           Jack. "I'm running away tonight for good,
           and this time I won't get caught."
           Annabelle whispered: "I'm coming with
           you." Her yellow hair, now brown at the
           roots, caught up in the wind and danced.
           Barnaby Jack took Annabelle's hand and
           pressed something into it the size of a
           jellybean. "Hide this in your socks, and
           be ready at midnight."
          Suzy looks to Sam to see if he is still awake. Sam looks to
          the rest of the troop to see if they are still awake. They
          all nod and signal for Suzy to continue. Suzy turns the page
          and reads on:
           He leapt out the window and landed in the
           fresh-fallen snow.
          EXT. SCOUT CAMP. DAY
          The next morning. Camp Ivanhoe. Scout Master Ward emerges
          from his tent. He puts on his hat. The wind whips it off his
          head. He chases it, catches it, and puts it back on with the
          chin-strap tight. He frowns. He shouts:
           No bugle? No reveille? Lazy-eye, Gadge,
           Deluca, Izod? Where's my troop? Let's go!
           You're late!
          Scout Master Ward tries to light a cigarette, but the match
          blows out. He walks past the latrine, the workbench, the row
          of smaller tents, and the charcoal grill. He throws his hands
          into the air.
           Chef? Breakfast?
          Scout Master Ward shakes his head. He arrives at the picnic
          table and rings his bell. He sits down. He opens a new issue
          of Indian Corn. There is a picture on the cover of a scout
          troop rappelling in Tasmania. He struggles to keep the
          rippling pages from turning by themselves.
          The first page. There is another drawing of the Scout Master-
          in-Chief. This time he is behind the wheel of a ship. His
          signature below, once again, reads Commander Pierce. There is
          a quotation in large text: "Anyone can hold the helm when the
          sea is calm."
          Pause. Scout Master Ward lowers his magazine. He looks
          around, confused. Something dawns on him.
          A small entourage of teenage scouts studies maps, charts, and
          documents at folding tables. One of them sits at a telegraph
          machine. He wears headphones and taps Morse code on a paddle
          as he listens to a transmission. He looks puzzled. He swivels
          his chair to a steno-machine and begins typing rapidly.
          A triple-sized tent with a canopy in front and a large totem
          pole looming over it. It stands on five-foot stilts. There is
          a school bus parked next to it with letters painted across
          its side which read Regional Jubilee.
          A forty-five-year-old scout master with several medals on his
          chest is sharpening a straight razor. He is Secretary
          McIntire. He adjusts a hot towel on the face of a man in a
          barber's chair.
          The young telegraph operator hurries out of the tent carrying
          a strip of paper. He hands it to Secretary McIntire.
          Secretary McIntire stares at it. He says to the man under the
                          SECRETARY MCINTIRE
           You're not going to believe this one,
           sir. That Scout Master on New Penzance?
           Has now lost his entire troop.
          The seated man whips the towel off his face and rises to his
          feet. He is Commander Pierce himself. He has silver hair, a
          moustache, and a much greater number of medals. He says in
          disbelief as he snatches the slip of paper:
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           Well, I'll be damned. Who is this bimbo?
                          SECRETARY MCINTIRE
           I couldn't say.
          Commander Pierce shakes his head. He continues to study the
          document as he sits back down. Secretary McIntire begins to
          lather his cheeks with a brush.
                         CUT TO:
          A vast archway of wood, straw, and rope construction. Fort
          Lebanon is spelled out across the top with bound sticks. A
          large flag waving madly on a pole reads Khaki Scouts of North
          America. A bugler on a platform plays the familiar staccato
          tattoo. It echoes for miles.
          Sam and Suzy wait inside the gates crouched behind a row of
          trash cans with the rest of the troop except Skotak. They
          shiver. Sam has on his back-pack. Suzy carries her suitcase.
          Gadge holds a tennis ball can.
          A scout master in an Indian chief's headdress stops as he
          walks by. He looks curiously at Sam and especially Suzy. He
          says to Nickleby:
                          GUARD SCOUT
           Who's your unit leader?
          Pause. Nickleby points to a fat man in an apron cooking
          hamburgers on a grill.
           That guy.
          The scout master shrugs. Skotak comes over and says
           There's a broken gum-ball machine behind
           the snack tent.
          Skotak distributes a handful of gum-balls among Sam, Suzy,
          and the rest of the troop. They all put them in their mouths.
          Skotak motions for everyone to follow him.
          A footbridge across a stream leads to a Quonset hut with an
          awning in front labelled Supply Tent. A crowd of very young
          scouts waits at a wide counter bartering over boxes of food,
          drink, and equipment. A team of helpers collects money and
          packages goods. At the center, there is a twenty-year-old
          scout with a pencil behind his ear. He is Cousin Ben. He says
          to a nine-year-old Junior Khaki:
                          COUSIN BEN
           I don't care how they do it where you
           come from. You want pop? You want candy?
           You want a snake-bite kit? Get some
          Skotak appears and whispers something to Cousin Ben. Cousin
          Ben nods. He says to his customers:
                          COUSIN BEN
           Come back in five minutes.
          Cousin Ben pulls a curtain shut behind the counter.
          Sam, Suzy, Skotak and the rest of the troop follow Cousin Ben
          briskly out a door and onto a cat-walk that runs along the
          top of a wall made from tall, pointed logs. As they talk,
          they walk past dozens of rows and clusters of tents grouped
          by color in the fields below. They walk past towers, huts,
          ladders, latrines, and a catapult under construction. They
          walk past a white infirmary with a red cross on it and a
          doctor taking a boy's blood pressure. They walk past a fleet
          of small, antique sailboats flying assorted troop banners.
          Five hundred scouts and fifty scout masters work, eat, talk,
          cook, and play sports and games all around the compound in
          spite of the fierce winds. One group rides motorcycles,
          another fires model rockets, another flies by overhead on a
          Cousin Ben points to Sam and asks Skotak over the sound of
                         THE WIND:
                          COUSIN BEN
           Is this him?
           Field Mate Sam Shakusky, Troop 55,
                          COUSIN BEN
           He's hot. Almost too hot. What's in the
           Seventy-six dollars -- but it's mostly in
                          COUSIN BEN
           Give it to me.
          Skotak motions for Gadge to hand Cousin Ben the tennis ball
          can. It appears to be very heavy and jingles as it moves.
          Cousin Ben takes it. He says to Sam:
                          COUSIN BEN
           You badge in seamanship?
           Yes, sir.
          Sam points to one of the patches on his sash. It has an
          anchor embroidered on it.
                          COUSIN BEN
           Good. There's cold-water crabber moored
           off Broken Rock. The skipper owes me an
           I.O.U. We'll see if he can take you on as
           a claw cracker. It won't be an easy life,
           but it's better than shock therapy.
           Thank you, sir. By the way, where's the
           chapel tent?
          Cousin Ben hesitates. He points behind them with his thumb:
                          COUSIN BEN
           Back there, but the padre's home with the
           mumps. Why do you ask?
           I want to bring my wife.
          Cousin Ben stops walking. He looks Sam up and down. Suzy says
                         BEHIND HIM:
           But we're not married yet.
          Cousin Ben turns to Suzy. He looks back to Sam and back to
          Suzy again.
                          COUSIN BEN
           You his girl?
          Suzy nods. Cousin Ben looks intrigued. He says tentatively:
                          COUSIN BEN
           Technically, I'm a civil-law scrivener.
           I'm authorized to declare births, deaths,
           and marriages. You're kind of young. You
           got a license?
          Sam and Suzy shake their heads. Cousin Ben nods. He speaks
          more gently now:
                          COUSIN BEN
           I can't offer you a legally binding
           union. It won't hold up in the state, the
           county, or, frankly, any courtroom in the
           world due to your age, lack of a license,
           and failure to get parental consent --
           but the ritual does carry a very
           important moral weight within yourselves.
           You can't enter into this lightly. Do you
           love each other?
          Sam and Suzy immediately nod. Cousin Ben continues:
                          COUSIN BEN
           Are you sure you're ready for this?
          Sam and Suzy immediately nod. Cousin Ben looks perturbed.
                          COUSIN BEN
           Let me rephrase it.
           We're in a hurry.
                          COUSIN BEN
           Spit out the gum, sister. In fact,
          Cousin Ben puts out his hand. Suzy spits her gum into his
          palm. He throws it away over his shoulder. Sam and the rest
          of the troop spit their gum out on the ground. Cousin Ben
                         SAYS STERNLY:
                          COUSIN BEN
           I don't like the snappy attitude. This is
           the most important decision you've made
           in your lives. Now go over by that
           trampoline and talk it through before you
           give me another quick answer.
          Cousin Ben watches as Sam and Suzy walk away and stand next
          to a large trampoline. A small scout jumps from a high
          ladder, bounces, and does a back-flip.
                         CUT TO:
          Sam and Suzy uncertain how to begin the conversation. Sam
           I guess we better try to pretend we're
           struggling over our decision for a minute
           before we go back over there and tell him --
           Maybe he's right. It could be a mistake.
          Sam looks stunned. He is speechless. He stammers:
           What? Why? How?
           Being married. Sometimes it seems sad to
           me. It might be better to just go steady
          Sam shakes his head. He looks off into the distance. He says
           I don't know what to say.
                         CUT TO:
          Cousin Ben counting nickels in the tennis ball can. He jerks
          his thumb toward Sam and Suzy and says dismissively:
                          COUSIN BEN
           I guess they're probably just trying to
           pretend they're struggling over their
           decision, but at least --
          Cousin Ben looks. Suzy has her hands around Sam's throat and
          is throttling him. Sam squirms loose and calms her down. The
          troop watches transfixed. Sam takes a snapshot out of his
          pocket and shows it to Suzy, explaining. Suzy nods. They come
          back over to the group. There are tears on Suzy's cheeks. She
          says to Cousin Ben:
           We're sure.
                          COUSIN BEN
           OK. Let's do a blood test.
          Cousin Ben stands at a collapsible altar. He wears a purple,
          silk stole around his neck with crosses stitched into it. Sam
          and Suzy hold a Bible with their hands on it. Skotak and the
          rest of troop listen solemnly as Cousin Ben reads from a
                          COUSIN BEN
           -- which we hereby consecrate on this
           day, the fifth of September, 1965.
                          (LOOKING UP)
           That's the end of the short-form. Do any
           of the witnesses have objections or
           remarks? Usually, they don't.
          Skotak raises his hand. Cousin Ben reluctantly calls on him:
                          COUSIN BEN
           Can we loan them the nickels? I'm worried
           about their future.
                          COUSIN BEN
           That's my fee.
          Skotak and the rest of the troop look very concerned. They
          murmur to each other:
           What's going to happen to them?
           Nobody knows.
           Let's take a vote.
           All in favor --
                          COUSIN BEN
           That's my fee.
          Skotak and the rest of the troop look to Cousin Ben. Cousin
          Ben glares at them. He sighs. He points to Skotak.
                          COUSIN BEN
           You're just like your brothers. OK, give
           them the tennis ball can.
          Cousin Ben points to the tennis ball can on the floor next to
          his feet. Skotak takes it and zips it into a side-pocket of
          Sam's back-pack. Cousin Ben hands Sam and Suzy a receipt on a
                          COUSIN BEN
           Sign here -- and initial here and here.
          Sam and Suzy sign and initial. Cousin Ben tears out a copy.
                          COUSIN BEN
           Take the carbon. Leave the Bible. Let's
          Sam and Suzy turn and walk out of the chapel tent holding
          hands. They do not smile. Cousin Ben, Skotak, and the rest of
          the troop follow them with grave expressions on their faces.
          Sam touches Suzy's hair. Suzy kisses Sam's hand. They walk as
          a group through the camp.
          Sam, Suzy, Skotak, and the rest of the troop wait at the end
          of a narrow dock. Cousin Ben stands below them in a small
          sailboat. He reaches up to Suzy and lifts her onboard. He
          reaches up to Sam and lifts him onboard, too. He rigs the
          Sam smiles sadly. He and Skotak do the secret handshake. The
          others quickly join in. Suzy blows them a kiss. Everyone
          looks choked up.
          Cousin Ben unloops a line. The sails quickly catch the strong
          wind, and the boat sails away into the harbor. Skotak and the
          rest of troop wave and salute. They watch, bittersweet.
           Where they going again?
           He's going to work on a shrimper, if I
           understand correctly.
           I wish them well.
           Me, too. Me, too.
          Skotak sighs. He turns and starts up the dock. The others
          follow him. Roosevelt hesitates. He points.
           I think they're coming back.
          Skotak and the rest of the troop stop and turn around. The
          sailboat glides back in. Sam leaps onto the dock with the
          tennis ball can. Suzy looks worried. Cousin Ben yells:
                          COUSIN BEN
           Be quick, sailor!
           What happened?
           She left her binoculars on a hook in the
           chapel tent.
           Just leave them.
          Sam sprints up the dock. He yells back over his shoulder:
           We can't. It's her magic power!
                         CUT TO:
          A binocular shot of Sam running full-speed through the
          compound. He approaches quickly -- then skids to a stop.
          Redford blocks the entrance. He is dressed in white hospital
          pajamas with a red cross on the breast pocket. His side is
          heavily bandaged and his arm is attached to an I/V drip. He
          lowers Suzy's binoculars.
          Sam stands frozen in front of Redford. Redford stares at him
          icily. Sam starts to say something -- then pauses. He says,
           You killed your dog, by the way.
           Well, it couldn't be helped.
          Sam nods. He asks quietly:
           Why do you consider me your enemy?
          Redford frowns. He says in disbelief:
           Because your girlfriend stabbed me in the
           back with lefty scissors.
           She's my wife now.
           I'm saying before that. Six weeks ago.
           From day one. What'd I do wrong? I'm
           trying to understand.
                          (IN SUMMATION)
           Why don't you like me?
                          (LONG PAUSE)
           Why should I? Nobody else does.
          Sam runs up to Redford and pokes him as hard as he can in the
          scissor cut with his finger. Redford screams.
          Scouts and scout masters everywhere stop what they are doing
          and look to the chapel tent. Across the compound, Commander
          Pierce comes out of his tent, alerted.
          Sam whips the binoculars out of Redford's hands, turns away,
          and sprints. No one moves anywhere except Sam dashing toward
          the marina. Redford shouts at the top of his lungs:
           He's here! The fugitive! Stop him!
          An emergency alarm sounds. The entire camp swings into
          action. Two teams of scouts playing capture-the-flag descend
          from both sides and cut Sam off from the dock. They wear red
          and yellow jerseys over their uniforms.
          Suzy jumps out of the boat onto the dock. Sam sees her beyond
          the blockade of scouts. She waves her arms. Sam throws up his
          hands. He sprints in a new direction, onto a wide field.
          There is a small, pink flag on a thin stick stuck in the
          ground at the center of a plastic ring. Sam grabs it as he
          runs past. He looks back and sees:
          A mob of fifty scouts chasing him. He circles in a giant
          figure eight trailed by the huge group. He races up a hill
          and stops at the top.
          Sam looks down at the approaching scouts and hundreds of
          others watching. A dark cloud rolls in casting a giant shadow
          over the entire camp. Sam throws the little flag down at his
          pursuers like a javelin. It sails in an arc and pokes down
          into the grass. There is a thunderclap. Sam looks up into the
          A bolt of lightning strikes him.
          Sam is thrown ten feet through the air and lands on his back.
          The tennis ball can explodes nickels. The mob of scouts stops
          with a jolt. They look terrified. Sam sits up. He is covered
          in black soot. His shoes are on fire. He shakes them off his
          Suzy runs through the crowd of scouts and drops down on her
          knees in front of Sam. She looks astonished. Sam says
           I'm OK.
          Suzy helps Sam to his feet. Sam raises Suzy's smoldering
          binoculars to his eyes. Skotak and the rest of the troop join
                         CUT TO:
          A binocular shot of a ladder leaning against a high fence.
                         SAM SHOUTS:
           Follow me!
          Sam leads Suzy, Skotak, and the rest of the troop fly at a
          sprint to the fence, climb the ladder, and pull it up after
          them. A bugle plays a cavalry charge. The mob bolts after
                         CUT TO:
          Split-screen. On one side of the frame, we see Captain Sharp,
          Scout Master Ward, and Becky wearing their operator head-
          phones. On the other side, we see Commander Pierce, Secretary
          McIntire, and the commander's entourage inside the command
          tent. Commander Pierce says into his field-telephone:
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           Captain Sharp, we've located the missing
           troop. They just fled camp. We're in
           COMMANDER PIERCE (cont'd)
           pursuit. They're accompanied by a twelve-
           year-old girl in knee-socks and Sunday-
           school shoes.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Stand by, Commander Pierce.
          Captain Sharp spins around in his chair and flips a switch on
          a two-way radio. He says into a microphone:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Jed, re-route to St. Jack Wood. Tell
           Social Services the boy's been spotted at
           Fort Lebanon.
           JED (V.O.)
           Roger that. Will comply.
          Captain Sharp sets down the microphone. He turns to Becky.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Becky, notify the Bishops: Suzy's there.
          Becky nods. Captain Sharp turns to Scout Master Ward.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Randy? You monitoring?
          Scout Master Ward is already on his feet. He peels off his
           Affirmative. I'm on my way.
          Becky plugs a cord into a socket and says:
           Hello! Mr. Bishop?
          Captain Sharp looks out the window with a sense of dread.
          Mr. Bishop listens on the telephone with a strained look on
          his face. Mrs. Bishop watches him intently.
           MR. BISHOP
           Oh, dear God.
          Mr. Bishop grabs Mrs. Bishop by the wrist. He says grimly:
           MR. BISHOP
           Get the boys.
          Mrs. Bishop raises her megaphone to her mouth. She shouts:
           MRS. BISHOP
           Let's go! Right now!
          INT. SEAPLANE. DAY
          A deHavilland Beaver in heavy rain and turbulence. Jed speaks
          into his radio while piloting the aircraft. Social Services
          sits beside him in the passenger's seat. She looks queasy but
           Tower control, this is Jed. Confirm co-
           ordinates for new destination: alpha-two-
           two-seven-one-fiver. Looking pretty soupy
           up here. Wouldn't mind setting down
           before the pot boils over.
           (to Social Services)
           Hang on, Social Services.
          Jed presses the yoke forward, and the plane dips hard. Social
          Services braces against the dash.
          Scout Master Ward steers his outboard through the open
          channel. The boat crests high over deep swells, flooding over
          in waves. Scout Master Ward is drenched. He does not flinch
          or even appear to notice.
          Sam, Suzy, Skotak, and the rest of the troop scramble through
          the woods as fast as they can. There are flashes of lightning
          and pounding thunder. Suzy trips on a root, and Sam pulls her
          to her feet. Sam trips on a rock, and Suzy pulls him to his
          The commander's entourage is frantically packing up their
          portable telephones, P.A. system, folding tables, collapsible
          chairs, etc. One of them wraps a tarp around boxes labelled
          A transistor radio. The announcer says urgently:
           WEATHER MAN (V.O.)
           Once again: storm waters have just
           breached the dam at Black Beacon
           WEATHER MAN (V.O.) (cont'd)
           Reservoir. A flash flood alert is in
           effect. Take immediate precautions.
          Commander Pierce and Secretary McIntire listen to the report.
          Secretary McIntire says gravely:
                          SECRETARY MCINTIRE
           That's coming our way.
          Captain Pierce nods, worried. The capture-the-flag scouts in
          soaking jerseys gather, winded, outside the tent. One of the
          team captains stands in the entrance breathing heavily.
          Commander Pierce points to him:
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           You find them?
                          TEAM CAPTAIN
           No, sir.
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           (to the entourage)
           Prepare to mobilize to higher ground.
          Secretary McIntire hands Commander Pierce an envelope with
          red-and-white stripes on it. Commander Pierce rips it open.
                         HE READS:
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           St. Jack Church is the designated storm
           (to Secretary McIntire)
           Notify all scouts to muster outside my
           tent on the double.
          The St. Jack's Church poster box. Another mimeographed page
          is stapled to the bulletin board. The heading is now Summer
          Pageant, 1965. It reads:
                          BENJAMIN BRITTEN'S
                          "NOYE'S FLUDDE"
           Performed by the
           Choristers of St. Jack Wood and New Penzance
                          8PM TONIGHT
                          PERFORMANCE CANCELLED
          The set for the ark stands on the platform behind the altar.
          There are candles and garlands in place, but also stacks of
          cardboard boxes and gallons of distilled-water. Numerous
          animal costumes hang from a rolling garment rack. An old nun
          crosses the aisle carrying a large, metal coffee dispenser.
          Two young priests cross in the opposite direction carrying
          folding cots. Voices shout urgently off-screen:
           VOICES (O.S.)
           More sandbags! We need dry blankets! Wake
           up the Deacon!
          Sam, Suzy, Skotak, and the rest of the troop slowly poke
          their heads in from the side door and creep up the stairs to
          the choir loft.
          The entire brigade of scouts stands assembled in formation in
          the rain. The last two stragglers come running and hurry into
          their positions. They all wear rain slickers or canvas
          ponchos. Commander Pierce, Secretary McIntire, and the
          commander's entourage emerge quickly from the command tent.
          Commander Pierce shouts:
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           Attention, company! Prepare for --
          Commander Pierce hesitates. He points down to the marina and
          says to Secretary McIntire:
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           Who's that?
          Secretary McIntire and the commander's entourage turn to see:
          Scout Master Ward speeding toward the dock in his motorboat.
          He leaps to shore, throws a line over a post, and sprints up
          to the assembly. He salutes Commander Pierce. Commander
          Pierce frowns and asks with quiet ferocity:
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           You call yourself a Khaki Scout?
           I'm sorry, sir?
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           Where's your goddamn troop? They could
           get killed out there!
           You don't have them?
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           You're a liability to us.
                          SECRETARY MCINTIRE
                          (IN EXPLANATION)
           The incident may affect our insurance
          Commander Pierce looks at Scout Master Ward's breast pocket.
          A name-tag that reads Scout Master Ward next to a patch with
          a picture of a snow-capped mountain. It says K.S.N.A.
          Leadership underneath.
          Commander Pierce says bitterly:
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           I'm field-stripping you of your command.
          Commander Pierce rips the patch off Scout Master Ward's
          uniform and throws it aside. He holds out his hand, palm up.
          Scout Master Ward looks stricken. He reaches into his pocket,
          takes out his scout pocket-knife, and hands it Commander
          Pierce. Commander Pierce puts it into his own pocket. He
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           Attention, company! Prepare for emergency
          Secretary McIntire leans close to Commander Pierce. He
                         WHISPERS DISCREETLY:
                          SECRETARY MCINTIRE
           Sir, do you have your medicine?
          Commander Pierce hesitates. He holds up a finger.
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           I'll be right back.
          Commander Pierce strides back into the command tent.
          Secretary McIntire looks to Scout Master Ward, uneasy. Scout
          Master Ward stares down at the ground.
          The flash-flood explodes out from the woods.
          Gushing water pours down the hillside, cuts a swath through
          the center of the camp, and tears down everything in its
          narrow path. The command tent suddenly becomes a tiny island
          at the center of a rushing river.
          The company is taken aback. Scout Master Ward stiffens,
          watchful. The totem pole creaks and sways, then falls cleanly
          onto the command tent, splitting it down the middle. Inside,
          something sparks, pops, then blows up. The tent bursts into
          Secretary McIntire does not react. He stands perfectly still,
          watching the fire. Scout Master Ward taps him, grabs him, and
          shakes him. Secretary McIntire looks at him blankly. Scout
          Master Ward makes a snap decision. He turns to the company
                         AND SHOUTS:
           Hold your position!
          Scout Master Ward runs ahead, splashes into the raging flood,
          wades through it against the current, dodging branches and
          debris, then pulls himself up onto the fallen totem pole and
          walks balancing on it to the burning tent. He disappears
          Secretary McIntire and the vast company watch, riveted.
          Scout Master Ward comes out the opposite side of the tent
          onto the other end of the fallen totem pole carrying
          Commander Pierce over his shoulders. He descends back into
          the water, trudges through it, and steps up onto the
          embankment. The company looks deeply, permanently impressed.
          Scout Master Ward hollers:
           Company Secretary! Status report, sir!
          Secretary McIntire hesitates. He stirs to attention and says
                          SECRETARY MCINTIRE
           All accounted for, Scout Master!
           Supply and Resources! Call it out!
          Cousin Ben gives an A-OK sign near the front of the assembly.
                         HE SHOUTS:
                          COUSIN BEN
           Affirmative, sir!
           Fall in! We're going to run for it, boys!
           Let's move!
          The entire company follows Scout Master Ward with Commander
          Pierce over his shoulders at a fast jog out of the camp.
          The room has now been converted into a full-fledged refugee
          center. Families from the town-ship huddle in pews with bags
          and piles of their wet belongings. Priests and nuns
          distribute towels and sandwiches to frightened children. Dogs
          and cats prowl nervously. Sandbags are stacked in low walls
          outside the doors and windows. The rain beats on the roof,
          and lightning continues to flash through the stained glass.
          A side door opens. Captain Sharp comes in from the storm with
          Mr. and Mrs. Bishop. Lionel, Murray, Rudy, and the two old
          fishermen follow closely behind them. They slam the door.
          Captain Sharp looks around frantically.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Who's in charge here?
          Another side door opens. Scout Master Ward jogs in with
          Commander Pierce still over his shoulders and the entire
          company behind him flooding into the room. Captain Sharp
          yells to him:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Randy! What happened?
          Scout Master Ward goes over to Captain Sharp and turns his
          back to him, jogging in place.
           Take the commander off of me.
          Captain Sharp helps Commander Pierce down off Scout Master
          Ward's back and into a pew to rest. Secretary McIntire
          assists them. Mr. Bishop strides up the aisle yelling to the
          left and right:
           MR. BISHOP
           Suzy? Sam?
           (shaking his head)
           They ran away again.
          Mr. and Mrs. Bishop grimace, unbelievably frustrated. Scout
          Master Ward addresses the scouts:
           We're going back out. I need volunteers.
          Hands raise. Scout Master Ward passes out walkie-talkies as
          he chooses his squad:
           You, you, you, you --
          Becky steps in front of Scout Master Ward with her hand
          raised. Scout Master Ward hesitates.
           -- and you?
          Becky takes a walkie-talkie. She looks at Scout Master Ward
          with admiration and asks, concerned:
           Are you all right?
           Of course, I am. Come on.
          Scout Master Ward leads Becky by the arm through the crowded
          church as they begin to gather supplies: extra flashlights, a
          flare gun, coils of rope.
          Captain Sharp looks up to the choir loft. Eleven children
          dressed in animal masks sit quietly in a row. Captain Sharp
          does a double-take. One of the animals is an otter wearing
          Sunday-school shoes and binoculars around its neck. Next to
          her is the male of the species in a sash with numerous small,
          embroidered patches on it.
          The front doors open. There is lightning, thunder, wind, and
          rain. Social Services enters. She takes off a wet cape with a
          red lining and hands it to an acolyte in a robe. Jed presses
          the doors shut behind them. Social Services asks immediately:
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Where's the boy?
          Captain Sharp hesitates. He says reluctantly:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           We don't know yet.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           That's not acceptable.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           (pretending to be irritated)
           What do you want me to say, lady?
           (to no one in particular)
           Somebody get Jed a cup of coffee.
          The acolyte runs to the coffee dispenser with a cardboard
          cup. Social Services charges over to Captain Sharp.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           You're Captain Sharp?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           That's right.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           I'm Social Services. I remanded the boy
           to your personal custody. You're
           responsible for his safety. I'm told he
           was just struck by lightning.
          Captain Sharp frowns. He looks to Scout Master Ward and says
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           That's the first I heard of it.
           It's true.
          Captain Sharp tries to process this. Social Services now
          moves in on Scout Master Ward. She says aggressively:
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Scout Master Ward, I presume?
           Yes, ma'am.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Your reputation precedes you.
          Captain Sharp and Scout Master Ward stand side-by-side in
          front of Social Services. She berates them:
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           You two are the most appallingly
           incompetent custodial guardians Social
           Services has ever had the misfortune to
                          ENCOUNTER --
           -- in a twenty-seven year career!
          Captain Sharp and Scout Master Ward look sheepish. Social
          Services says bitterly:
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           What do you have to say for yourselves?
          Captain Sharp hesitates. He says strangely:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           You can't do this. They'll eat him alive
           in there.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           (aside, to Scout Master Ward)
           What's the name of the place again?
           Juvenile refuge?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Juvenile refuge. That sounds like jail.
          Silence. In the background, the acolyte picks up Panagle's
          walking stick weapon off the floor. He stares at it, puzzled.
          Social Services says carefully:
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Just find the boy -- and deliver him --
           (motioning to herself)
           -- to Social Services. Nothing else is in
           your power.
           MR. BISHOP
           I'm sorry.
          Social Services, Captain Sharp, and Scout Master Ward turn to
          Mr. and Mrs. Bishop. Mr. Bishop looks tense.
           MR. BISHOP
           Can we get back to the rescue now?
           MRS. BISHOP
           Suzy's still out there.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Who are you?
           Walt and Laura Bishop. Their daughter's
           the missing girl.
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           The parents of the stabber?
           MRS. BISHOP
           I object to that description. She was
          Commander Pierce appears with an oxygen mask over his face.
          He pulls it aside briefly and says to Secretary McIntire:
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           I want the details. Where's the scout she
                          SECRETARY MCINTIRE
           Right here.
          Secretary McIntire snaps his fingers and gives a signal.
          Redford appears.
           Field Mate Redford, sir.
                          COMMANDER PIERCE
           (through the oxygen mask)
           What's his condition?
                          SECRETARY MCINTIRE
           He may suffer some limited chronic kidney
           insufficiency. Here's the report.
          Secretary McIntire hands Commander Pierce a doctor's report.
          Mrs. Bishop snatches it and throws it over her shoulder.
           MRS. BISHOP
           We don't have time for this!
           She's right!
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Let's go!
          Social Services turns and starts up the aisle. She stops
          suddenly. Captain Sharp is standing in their path brandishing
          Panagle's walking stick weapon.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Nobody's going anywhere.
          Everyone stops. Captain Sharp locks eyes with Social
          Services. He says in a steely voice:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           He's not getting shock therapy.
          Social Services looks furious. Her jaw sets. She reaches
          inside her jacket and withdraws a small pad labelled Citation
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           That's it! I'm citing you for gross
           misconduct! You are hereby summoned to
           appear before the board of --
          Captain Sharp looks enraged. He grits his teeth. He reaches
          into his back pocket and withdraws a similar pad labelled
          Boating Violations.
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I'm writing you up back! Be notified that
           you stand accused of the mistreatment and
                          IMPROPER --
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           What are you talking about?
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           I won't let you do it!
          Everyone looks. Redford is standing on a pew with his arm
          stretched out pointing up at the choir loft in amazement. The
          troop is there, but Sam's and Suzy's seats are empty.
          There is a flash, a bang, and all the lights in the room go
          out at once. People gasp. Candles flicker alight on
          candlesticks. A back-up generator kicks into gear, humming,
          and the room fills with a new, different light.
          Captain Sharp says to himself:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           They're gone.
           MR. BISHOP
           MRS. BISHOP
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Gadge! Lazy-eye! Skotak!
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           They're here?
          Captain Sharp strides down the aisle. He shouts up to Skotak:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Where'd they go? Answer me!
          Skotak hesitates. He and the rest of the troop all look up to
          a small, rickety, attic door. It is slightly ajar above a
          long, narrow ladder behind the pipes of the organ.
          Captain Sharp bolts up the steps. Everyone follows him,
          The storm rages. Captain Sharp opens a trap door onto the
          high eaves. Faces appear in numerous windows below, looking
          up. Mr. and Mrs. Bishop poke their heads out behind Captain
          Sharp. On the far end of the rooftop, Sam and Suzy huddle
          together at the base of the high steeple.
          Captain Sharp stares up at Sam and Suzy, dumbstruck.
          Sam and Suzy quickly start climbing a rusty gutter up the
          side of the steeple. Captain Sharp looks astonished. He
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Halt! Stop!
          Sam and Suzy continue to climb. Captain Sharp shouts back to
          Mr. and Mrs. Bishop over the roaring wind:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Stay there!
          Scout Master Ward appears and thrusts out the coil of rope.
          He yells to Captain Sharp:
           Take this!
          Captain Sharp throws the rope over his shoulder and advances.
          Mr. and Mrs. Bishop both crawl out after him, but Scout
          Master Ward pulls them back. Mr. Bishop looks to Mrs. Bishop.
          They are both terrified and helpless. They hold on to each
          other tightly.
                         CUT TO:
          Captain Sharp tight-rope-walking along the edge of the
          slippery roof with his arms stretched out sideways,
          balancing. He army-crawls up steep slate shingles and reaches
          the bottom of the steeple. He looks up. Sam and Suzy have
          arrived at the top. They inch away sideways around a ledge
          and disappear to the other side. Captain Sharp's voice
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Where you going? What are you doing? Come
          Captain Sharp rubs his eyes. He knots one end of the rope
          around his waist and ties the other to a pipe at the foot of
          the gutter. He pulls the rope tight, presses his foot on the
          wall, and gets ready to start climbing -- then stops
          suddenly. He hesitates. He pulls the walkie-talkie off his
          belt and yells into it:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Social Services? Do you read me? Over!
                         CUT TO:
          Sam and Suzy at the top of the steeple standing with their
          backs against a painted cross. They look out.
          The entire church has become an island. The cemetery is under
          water, and the circling streets are fast rivers. Suzy turns
          to Sam. They both appear relatively calm.
           We might have to swim for it.
           How deep is it? I didn't bring my life
           I don't know, but if it's too shallow,
           we'll break our necks, anyway. Hang onto
          Sam and Suzy link arms.
                         CUT TO:
          Captain Sharp climbing the steeple as Social Services yells
          at him over the speaker of his walkie-talkie:
           SOCIAL SERVICES (V.O.)
           Application denied! I'm sorry! Over!
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Counsellors? What's the legal
           perspective? Over!
                         CUT TO:
          Mr. and Mrs. Bishop watching from the trap door with Scout
          Master Ward. Mr. Bishop's eyes widen. He turns quickly to
          Mrs. Bishop. She nods, energized. Mr. Bishop grabs Scout
          Master Ward's walkie-talkie and shouts forcefully:
           MR. BISHOP
           In this state? I would litigate with
           extreme confidence.
           MRS. BISHOP
           I concur.
           MRS. BISHOP
           Open with article fifteen of the Codes of
           Civic Jurisdiction.
           MR. BISHOP
                          (FROM MEMORY)
           No party, under any circumstance, shall
           be denied due and proper consideration...
                         CUT TO:
          Social Services' face, inscrutable, as she listens.
                         CUT TO:
          Sam and Suzy preparing to jump. They each take a deep breath.
           On three again.
           Wait. Just in case this is a suicide, or
                          SAM (CONT'D)
           they capture us, and we never see each
           other again anymore -- thank you for
           marrying me. I'm glad I got to know you,
          Suzy looks deeply moved. She kisses Sam. A little electric
          zap crackles at their lips. Suzy's eyes widen.
           I think you've still got lightning in
           Let's jump.
          Sam and Suzy look down at the water again. Captain Sharp's
          voice screams from off-screen:
           CAPTAIN SHARP (O.S.)
          Sam and Suzy recoil. Captain Sharp appears, clinging to the
          corner of the ledge. He shouts:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
          Sam and Suzy retreat slightly. Captain Sharps waves his hands
          in surrender. He yells into the walkie-talkie:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Tell him! Over!
          Captain Sharp holds out the walkie-talkie. Social Services
          voice comes over the scratchy speaker once more. She shouts:
           SOCIAL SERVICES (V.O.)
           Captain Sharp is offering to assume the
           responsibility of foster parenthood!
                         CUT TO:
          Scout Master Ward watching from the trap door with Mr. and
          Mrs. Bishop. He says excitedly into his walkie-talkie:
           He wants you to live with him!
                         CUT TO:
          Social Services watching from an attic window. She says
          softly into her own walkie-talkie:
                          SOCIAL SERVICES
           Is this acceptable to you, Mr. Shakusky?
                         CUT TO:
          Sam staring at Captain Sharp. Captain Sharp says hopefully:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           What do you think, pal?
          Tears stream down Sam's cheeks in the rain. He looks to Suzy.
          She nods. She holds Sam's hand, and Sam reaches out to take
          Captain Sharp's. Captain Sharp says into the walkie-talkie:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           We're coming down! Over and out.
                         CUT TO:
          Inside the church. The congregation listens on another walkie-
          talkie. They are all just about to burst into a cheer -- when
          there is a second, brighter flash followed by a much louder
          bang and then a terrible, thunderous, ripping explosion. The
          lights go out again. Everyone screams.
          Scout Master Ward, Mr. and Mrs. Bishop, and Social Services
          stare with their mouths open in frozen horror. The entire
          steeple has disappeared. Only a twisted stump remains. Off
          the edge of the roof, at the end of the rope, dangling in the
          rain, Captain Sharp hangs swinging with Sam's hand in his
          fist and Suzy's in Sam's. Voices shout in a panic above. Sam
          and Suzy look up at Captain Sharp. He says to them evenly,
          swaying above the rushing water:
                          CAPTAIN SHARP
           Don't let go.
                         CUT TO:
          Three days later. The detached steeple of the church lies on
          its side on the roof of a smashed Volkswagen. The ground is
          covered with strewn branches and trash. Sandbags still
          surround the building. The narrator stands in front of the
          wreckage and addresses the camera:
           The Black Beacon storm was considered by
           the U.S. Department of Inclement Weather
           to be the region's most destructive
                          NARRATOR (CONT'D)
           meteorological event of the second half
           of the twentieth century.
          A basketball backboard sticks up out of nine feet of standing
          water. The net grazes the surface. The narrator sits in a
          rowboat floating alongside it.
           It lingered through six high-tides and
           inundated the islands with punishing
           winds and extreme high waters.
          An enormous neon ace-of-spades with the word Open spelled in
          broken light-bulbs above it is jammed sideways into a sandy
          beach. Brightly painted wooden planks are littered
          everywhere. The black lighthouse remains intact in the
          background. The narrator, now tiny in the frame, continues:
           On St. Jack Wood, powerful surges broke
           the arcade boardwalk and demolished the
           village bandstand and casino.
          EXT. SCOUT CAMP. DAY
          One week later. A repaired Camp Ivanhoe sign is being hoisted
          up into place above the entrance. Scouts throughout the camp
          hammer, chop, nail, and saw.
          Scout Master Ward's portable night stand. The reel-to-reel
          tape recorder is recording. The photograph of the Scout
          Master-in-Chief at the Matterhorn has been replaced by a
          picture of Becky operating her switchboard.
          Scout Master Ward says into the microphone:
           Scout Master's log. October tenth.
           Reconstruction continues increasingly
           ahead of schedule, which I attribute to a
           particularly robust esprit de corps among
           the troop. The latrine, however,
           continues to present --
          Scout Master Ward notices Skotak and a young boy with glasses
          standing in the doorway. He says, off-mic:
           Is this the new recruit?
           Yes, sir.
           What's his rank?
           He doesn't have one.
           Pigeon Scout! Let's get you a patch.
          Scout Master Ward presses stop on his tape recorder and leads
          Skotak and the young boy out of the tent. The narrator
           The coastal areas of New Penzance were
           battered and changed forever.
          The narrator's nautical chart. The cove is no longer
           NARRATOR (V.O.)
           Mile 3.25 Tidal Inlet was erased from the
          One year later. The sky is blue. Wildflowers grow in the tall
          grass. The narrator, now in shirtsleeves, concludes:
           But harvest yields the following autumn
           far exceeded any previously recorded, and
           the quality of the crops was said to be
          The narrator lingers for a moment, looking into the camera --
          then turns away and walks down the hillside.
          The landing at the top of the staircase. The portable record
          player sits on the braided rug with the turntable spinning. A
          child's voice says over the speaker:
           RECORD PLAYER (V.O.)
           So you see, the composer Benjamin Britten
           has taken the whole orchestra apart. Now
           he puts it back together again in a
          Lionel, Murray, and Rudy lie on the floor on their stomachs,
          propped up with their chins on their fists. They listen.
          Suzy sits in a small armchair reading a book called The
          Return of Auntie Lorraine. There is an illustration on the
          cover of a leathery, old woman and a girl with a pony-tail
          looking together into a crystal ball. The kitten scratches at
          Suzy's feet.
          Sam sits on a stool painting a picture at the small easel. He
          wears a miniature version of Captain Sharp's short-sleeved
          uniform with a black necktie and a baseball cap.
          Mrs. Bishop's amplified voice booms from the bottom of the
           MRS. BISHOP (O.S.)
           Suzy? Lionel, Murray, Rudy! Dinner!
          Sam starts. Lionel, Murray, and Rudy look up from the record
          player. Suzy is impassive. Mr. Bishop's voice takes over the
           MR. BISHOP (O.S.)
           Don't make us ask twice!
          Lionel, Murray, and Rudy jump to their feet and race down the
          stairs. Sam dashes to the window. He opens it, climbs out,
          and disappears. Suzy closes her book and rises to her feet.
          Sam's head pokes back up from below. He and Suzy lock eyes.
          Sam smiles. He whispers to Suzy urgently:
           See you tomorrow.
          Suzy smiles back. Sam ducks away. Suzy goes over to the
          window and looks out with her binoculars.
                         CUT TO:
          A binocular shot of Sam dropping to the ground and running
          across the back lawn, into the trees. He comes out on the
          dirt road where Captain Sharp waits, sitting on the hood of
          his station wagon, smoking a cigarette. They both get into
          the car and drive off.
          Suzy lowers the binoculars. She pauses in front of the easel
          and looks at the picture. She walks quietly away down the
          stairs. The kitten follows her. The record continues to play
          on the empty landing.
          The camera moves in toward Sam's painting on the easel. It is
          a watercolor landscape of Mile 3.25 Tidal Inlet. The tent is
          pitched on the beach, and Sam's and Suzy's clothes hang on
          the clothesline. Written in the sand with seashells just at
          the water's edge are the words:
                          MOONRISE KINGDOM

Moonrise Kingdom

Writers :   Wes Anderson  Roman Coppola
Genres :   Comedy  Drama  Romance

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