1 INT. JACOB MORRIS’S APARTMENT - NIGHT
JACOB MORRIS is sitting in his apartment on his Lazy boy. He is picking at his TV dinner on his TV tray while watching the television set. The glow off of the TV is shining onto his face. The telephone rings and Jacob turns his head wondering who would possibly be calling. He slowly gets up and walks over to the caller ID. He looks at the caller ID, (the audience can not see what the caller ID says), and picks up the telephone. REBECCA Hello. Once Jacob hears Rebecca’s voice he panics and hangs up the phone. Jacob is staring at the phone when suddenly it begins ringing again. It is Rebecca calling again. Jacob answers the phone. JACOB Hello. 2 EXT. THE ACCIDENT - DAY
Jacob is driving his small jeep down a road. It is early morning, just after dawn, and Jacob is on his way to the high school. JACOB (bobbing head to rap music) Jacob stops at a stop light and his friend AMY pulls up next to him. AMY (beeps her car horn) Both Jacob and Amy roll their windows down. AMY (leaning out of car window) Hey! Am I gonna see you at Tyler’s tonight? JACOB You know I’ll be there if you are! AMY Pick me up from my place at eight. Both Jacob and Amy don’t notice that the stop light has turned green. A random person honks their car horn from behind them. (CONTINUED)
2. JACOB (startled; guns his car)
Jacob drives for a few seconds and as he picks up speed CALEB CAIN steps off of a curb right in front of Jacob’s jeep. Jacob has no time to think and Caleb’s body hits the windshield. Caleb dies instantly due to the impact. JACOB (jumps out of car yelling) O my god! O my god! No! No! Amy’s car screeches as she slams on her brakes and she gets out of her car. GIRL FRIEND (slams car door and starts hysterically screaming) The scene closes with bystanders crowding around the scene. 3 INT. CALEB’S HOUSE - MORNING
Caleb’s sister, REBECCA CAIN, begins to knock on Caleb’s bedroom door because they normally walk to school together. REBECCA (yelling) Caleb open your dam door, I need to use your printer! MRS. CAIN (yelling from down stairs) Watch your mouth Rebecca! REBECCA (ignoring her mother; opens Caleb’s door) (walks into Caleb’s room and heads over to his desk) REBECCA (as she turns printer on) Stupid slow piece of shit. (She begins to print her paper and starts to snoop around.She stumbles across an open journal and begins to read it. After she reads an entry she quickly closes it and leaves the room, completely forgetting about the paper she had printed.) (CONTINUED)
Rebecca leaves Caleb’s room and enters the hallway and heads towards her room. REBECCA (yelling down the stairs) Mom! I need a ride to school, Caleb left! Rebecca enters her room and stuffs the journal between the mattress and box spring of her bed. She walks over to her desk and zips up her backpack. She wraps her backpack around one shoulder and quickly leaves the room, shutting the door behind her. 4 EXT. LARGE CATHOLIC CHURCH - DAY
It is a clear, sunny day with bright blue skies. Slowly, family members, friends, and others dressed in black make their way into the double doors of the church. 5 INT. LARGE CATHOLIC CHURCH - DAY
The pews in the church are completely filled. All that can be heard are low whispers and mourns of the assembled people. A large framed picture of Caleb stands in the front of the church behind his shiny, white, closed casket. A beautiful display of multi- colored flowers surround the casket. The chatter dies down as the PRIEST approaches the alter. PRIEST We gather here today not to mourn, but to celebrate the life of Caleb Cain. Caleb was an extraordinary individual that had great love for his family, friends, and had a special place in his heart for the animals on this Earth. Caleb has completed his time here and has entered a better place. He is now in the hand’s of our Lord. Rebecca slowly stands up from her seat in the front pew. MR. CAIN is clutching Mrs. Cain tightly as she is mourning onto his shoulder. Rebecca heads toward the alter and up to the podium to give a speech. Rebecca glances around at the audience and takes a deep breath before she begins. REBECCA As all of you know I am Caleb’s sister, Rebecca. We were pretty (MORE) (CONTINUED)
4. REBECCA (cont’d) close considering our age difference. We shared almost everything with each other. There is no one to blame for what has happened to my brother. It was an accident, and we need to accept that. As Catholics, we are taught to forgive one another. This is what Caleb would want from you, forgiveness. Thank you.
Rebecca steps off the face. Her back is set the pew with purpose. and they hug her. Her Rebecca is not.
podium with a stoic expression on her straight and she is walking back to Rebecca sits down next to her parents parents are still grieving, but
6 INT. THE WAKE - AFTERNOON
Jacob enters the wake with his parents at his side. The room is very crowded. There is a line of people wrapped around the room waiting to talk to the Cain family. Alongside the Cain family is Caleb’s casket and large picture surrounded by different flower arrangements that had been sent to the family. The line continues to move as well wishers move past the family they stop to kneel in front of the white casket to write small messages along with their names on it. MR. MORRIS (guiding his son and wife towards the line) Are you sure you want to do this, son? Jacob takes his eyes off the casket and looks at his father. JACOB I don’t really have a choice. The line continues to move along as the Morris family stands in silence. Eventually, it is time for the Morris family to give the Cain family their condolences. Mrs. Morris and Mrs. Cain hug each other. MRS.MORRIS (to Mrs. Cain as they hug) We are so sorry. This has been really hard for us, especially for Jacob. As they are hugging Mr. Morris and Mr. Cain shake hands. Rebecca and Jacob exchange awkward stares. (CONTINUED)
MRS. CAIN (turns to Jacob) We have accepted that this was God’s plan for Caleb. JACOB (nods his head while holding eye contact with Mrs. Cain) MRS. CAIN Caleb’s life was so short lived. Mrs. Cain grabs onto Jacob’s arm tightly. He begins to draw away and then can’t help but stop himself. Rebecca frowns as she hears her mother begin to speak. MRS. CAIN (CONT’D) (in a slightly begging manner) Please just keep Caleb in your thoughts and prayers. The worst thing that can happen is for Caleb to be forgotten. Jacob’s parents grab onto Jacob to steer him along towards the casket. In the background Mr. Cain holds onto Mrs. Cain as she begins to sob uncontrollably. As the Morris family approaches the casket, Jacob hesitates to kneel down. He reads the inscriptions and hurriedly continues walking away, unable to kneel at the casket or write a message. Rebecca’s eyes were on Jacob as this all happened. 7 INT. HOTEL LOBBY - DAY
Jacob is standing behind the counter of a hotel lobby, he is in uniform. It is 15-20 years later and Jacob has a worn down look about him. He is just finishing checking in two guests. A younger college age girl named MELISSA is working the counter with him. JACOB Thank you for choosing Best Western and have a nice stay. Let me know if there is anything else that you need. Thanks.
COUPLE We will.
After the couple disappears into the elevator, the MANAGER of the hotel comes around the corner.
6. MANAGER Jacob, could I please see you in my office. I have an opportunity I would like to talk to you about. Melissa can watch the counter. JACOB Yes sir.
Jacob follows the manager down the hall and into the office. He slowly shuts the door behind them and takes a seat in a chair across from the manager’s desk. MANAGER Jacob, you have worked here a long time. I know that you haven’t shown any interest in promotion in the past, but you’re a solid employee and you have seniority so I wanted to at least run it past you. JACOB OK. MANAGER A supervisor position has opened up at a nearby branch and I am willing to recommend you. The pay is much better, as are the hours. And, you won’t have to work as a desk clerk anymore. What do you say? JACOB I don’t know. I’m not sure if I want to be a supervisor. MANAGER (confused and a little frustrated) Jacob, you have worked here longer than any of our other current employees. That alone makes you perfectly qualified for the job. Sure you will have a few more responsibilities, but nothing that you can’t handle. Did I mention that the job comes with a raise? JACOB Still, I don’t think it sounds right for me.
MANAGER Jacob, come on. You are older than I am, so you really want to be a desk clerk your entire life? Stop holding yourself back. JACOB I’m sorry but I just don’t want the job. With that, Jacob quickly gets up and leaves the office, leaving the manager thoroughly bewildered. 8 EXT. PARKING LOT OUTSIDE OF JACOB’S APARTMENT - DAY
Jacob pulls into the parking lot of his apartment in an older looking four door sedan. He parks and gets out of his car, still in his hotel uniform. He makes his way up the stairs on the outside of the apartment complex to the third floor. When he gets to his unit he lets himself in. 9 INT. JACOB’S APARTMENT - DAY
Jacob enters the apartment through the front door and hangs his keys up on a hook on the wall, next to another set of keys. It is a small one bedroom apartment, but does not look like a bachelor pad. A woman, ELIZABETH, comes out of the bedroom to greet Jacob. ELIZABETH Hi honey, (leans in and gives Jacob a quick kiss) you’re home early aren’t you? JACOB Yeah I guess, how was your day? ELIZABETH It was a good day actually. signed two new clients.
JACOB That’s great. ELIZABETH Was your day alright? JACOB So so, I got offered a promotion.
8. ELIZABETH Wow! Jacob that is fantastic news. When do you start? JACOB I turned it down. ELIZABETH I don’t understand? do that?
Why would you
JACOB I just don’t think the job would be right for me. ELIZABETH Jacob, you’ve been working at that hotel for years, you deserve that promotion. JACOB I don’t think so. ELIZABETH But why Jacob? Why won’t you let yourself succeed? i know that you would do so well if you just gave yourself the chance but you won’t. Jacob has a flashback to the accident. The blood, the body, the funeral. When he comes back to the present he appears distraught and boarder-line angry. JACOB Can we please just drop this? I told you that I don’t want the job and that’s that! ELIZABETH (also starting to get a little angry) You don’t make any sense to me. I try so hard to be supportive because I want you to be happy, but I can’t help you if you don’t want yourself to be happy. JACOB I didn’t ask for your help. ELIZABETH (hurt by this last statement) You treat our relationship the same way. Every time I try to get (MORE) (CONTINUED)
ELIZABETH (cont’d) closer to you, you distance yourself from me. You have to let go of whatever it is that is telling you that you can’t be happy. I can’t.
JACOB I just can’t OK.
ELIZABETH Just tell me what it is that is holding you back. JACOB There isn’t anything to tell. ELIZABETH You can tell me, I am here for you Jacob you know that. JACOB I told you that there isn’t anything to tell. Jacob once again flashes back to the day of the accident. He sees the girl in the car the moment before, the people screaming, Caleb’s family. ELIZABETH Just talk to me, it will be OK. JACOB It won’t be OK. working.
ELIZABETH What isn’t working? you saying. Us.
Jacob what are
JACOB We aren’t working.
ELIZABETH Jacob please don’t do this. If I said something to hurt you I’m sorry. I just want to help you. JACOB You can’t help me. It would be best if you just left.
ELIZABETH Please Jacob... JACOB Please Liz, I want you to leave. Elizabeth leaves the apartment balling and confused. Jacob sits down at the kitchen table and puts his head in his hands.
10 INT. JACOB’S APARTMENT - NIGHT
Continuation of Scene 1. Jacob continues to listen to Rebecca speak on the other end of the phone. The audience still does not know who is on the other line. JACOB Okay, I’ll be there. Jacob hangs up the phone, grabs his jacket, and heads out the door, leaving his dinner on the TV tray unfinished and the television on. 11 EXT. FAMILY DINER - NIGHT
We see the back of Jacob as he is walking into the diner. He enters the diner and starts looking around for Rebecca. The room is filled with several families enjoying their meals and engaging in friendly conversations. 12 INT. FAMILY DINER - NIGHT
HOST (cheerfully) Table for one sir? Jacob is very confused at the whole situation. He looks at the host confused as to why he is so cheerful and continues to look around for Rebecca. He spots a lady sitting in a booth alone in the back of the diner and assumes that it is Rebecca. JACOB (mumbling as he walks away) Um no. I am meeting someone.
Jacob heads to the back of booth he just stands there is blankly staring out the really paying attention to
the diner and once he reaches the wondering if it is her. Rebecca window of the diner and not anything that is going on.
JACOB Rebecca? Rebecca turns her head towards Jacob and stares at him taking in his appearance. REBECCA (motions for Jacob to sit down) Itâ€™s been awhile Jacob, please. Jacob slides into the booth across from Rebecca. The two of them awkwardly stare at each other in silence. An elderly WAITRESS interrupts the silence. WAITRESS (cheerfully) What can I get you two darlings? The two of them look startled by the cheerful waitress. JACOB Coffee. WAITRESS Decaf or regular sweetheart? JACOB Regular. WAITRESS (to Rebecca) And for you miss? REBECCA Nothing for me. Thanks. The waitress collects their menus and walks away from the booth. JACOB So you wanted to meet me... REBECCA I was surprised to see your still living in the area.
JACOB (shrugs his shoulders) Well ya know.. REBECCA Do you know why I’m in town? JACOB (shrugs his shoulders again) Uh, well I heard about your mom. How is your father taking it? REBECCA My father’s been dead for ten years. JACOB (uninterested) Oh... sorry to hear that. REBECCA It’s OK. More awkward silence ensues. The waitress breaks the silence by delivering Jacob’s coffee. Jacob begins to shift uncomfortably in his seat and looks around. It is obvious that he is starting to regret coming to this meeting. Rebecca seems to notice Jacob’s discomfort and starts to talk. REBECCA I know how confused you must be right now and I’m sorry but this is something I have to do. JACOB (Looking more confused than ever) OK... if this is about your brother... REBECCA (interrupting) It is. JACOB I’m sorry but I really don’t think I want to hear what you have to say. (begins to get up to leave)
13. REBECCA Jacob please... JACOB (beginning to get upset, but still reserved) No, I really don’t need this right now. It has been almost thirty years since the accident and not one day has gone by where I have not been consumed by thoughts of Caleb and I think I’ve had enough. I’m sorry, but I’m leaving. REBECCA (yelling after him) Jacob! No, please you need to hear this. (Jacob continues to leave) It wasn’t your fault!
Jacob freezes and turns back to stare at Rebecca. By this point others in the diner are starting to notice the argument and try not to stare but the background noise begins to fade. REBECCA Caleb’s death wasn’t your fault and I can prove it to you. Please, sit back down. JACOB (obviously startled, begrudgingly walks back and slides into the booth) Talk. Now that Jacob is back in front of her, staring her down, Rebecca begins to lose confidence and hesitates. JACOB Talk or I’m leaving. REBECCA (pulls a worn black journal out of her purse) This belonged to Caleb.
JACOB (stares at the journal) What does this have to do with
REBECCA This was his journal. JACOB OK, why haven’t I heard about this before? I hid it. it. Why?
REBECCA No one else knows about
JACOB I don’t understand.
REBECCA (begin to tear up, looks away to wipe her eyes, looks back at Jacob, suddenly very serious) Are you a religious man Jacob. JACOB No? Not particularly. Why, what does that have to do with your brother? REBECCA My parents are strict Roman Catholic, and Catholics take the after life very seriously. You could almost say that they obsess over it. Catholics believe in a set of very strict rules when it comes to where you will spend your eternity. If certain rules are broken, the punishment is eternal damnation. (begins to tear up again, starting to loose control of her emotions) I... I just couldn’t bear the thought of my parents believing that Caleb was going to spend eternity in Hell. (tears have turned in to sobbing) I don’t know what else to say, you will have to read the rest for yourself. (slides the journal across the table)
JACOB (just stares at the journal) REBECCA (crying) I can’t say anymore, I thought I could but this is too hard. Please just read the journal. Read it and know that I am so sorry Jacob, I truly am. I’m sorry. Rebecca quickly walks out of the diner covering her face and doesn’t look back. Jacob is left sitting alone, in shock, staring at the journal. He slowly reaches across the table, picks it up, puts it under his arm, and leaves without paying. 13 INT. JACOB’S APARTMENT - NIGHT
Jacob is sitting alone at a desk in his apartment. The apartment is void of light except for one reading lamp on the table. The journal is open on the desk in front of Jacob. He slowly flips through the journal until he comes to the last page with writing on it. Jacob stops and reads the last page. 14 INT. CALEB’S ROOM - DAY Caleb is sitting at his desk writing in his journal. CALEB (Voiceover for what Caleb is writing) I don’t know how else to say this except that I do not think that I was meant for this life. Time and time again I have tried to make things work out but my efforts have been futile at best. I guess what I am saying is goodbye. I do not know if I will have better luck in the next life, but I do know that my time in this life is over. If anyone is to find this, please try not to mourn my death because death is what I want.
15 INT. JACOB’S APARTMENT - NIGHT
After he finishes reading, Jacob leans back and begins to realize the magnitude of what he has just read. He flashes back to Caleb’s mom putting the pressure of Caleb’s life on him, and to all of the things he pushed away because of the accident: the promotions, Elizabeth. Jacob begins to cry. He then picks up a pen off of his desk. JACOB (writing in the journal) I wish that it would have been me who died that day. Jacob sets down his pen, shuts the journal, and continues to cry.