Thursday, December 1, 2016
A mid-range budget feature film. I am screenwriter and producer to date. Looking for co-producer and director. Three problems. (1) Screen Australia declared, two years before the official ban on me, that my 40 years of producing films did not qualify me to call myself a ‘producer’. (2) HONEY needs further development (script editing, budgeting) but the ban on me precludes making a development application to SA. (3) Screen Australia believes that reading any screenplay of mine would place staff at risk!
1 INT. CHURCH. DAY`
A match is lit in a dimly lit church vestibule.
A girl's hand, holding the burning match, lights a votive candle, illuminating 9 year old JASPER.
In a high wide shot JASPER carries the candle across the vestibule, places it alongside other burning candles.
A small congregation watches a PRIEST swinging a smoking incense-filled silver thurible on either side of a coffin at the other end of the church.
JASPER, her blonde hair short-cropped, moves her hand back and forth through the candle flames - caressing them, being caressed by them.
JASPER looks in the direction of the coffin.
JASPER (VOICE OVER)
'I just want to be normal', Honey used to say...
DISSOLVE THROUGH TO:
2 INT. CAR. OUTSIDE PUB. LATE AFTERNOON
HONEY, late teens, seen through a dirty windscreen. Her face, bathed in late afternoon sun, glistens with a sheen of sweat.
JASPER (voice over)
HONEY’S attention is focused on:
A family in an outdoors beer garden. The MOTHER sits alongside the FATHER as their DAUGHTER, 16, tells them an animated story, her words barely audible above pub chatter.
CLOSE ON HONEY, watching.
The MOTHER and FATHER laugh at their DAUGHTER'S story. The MOTHER laughs, looks at the FATHER lovingly. He smiles, wraps his arm around her shoulder, pulls her close, kisses her cheek. The DAUGHTER glows with happiness as she registers her parents’ love of each other; of her. A happy family.
HONEY watches intently.
The DAUGHTER finishes her story, takes a theatrical bow. Her MOTHER and FATHER laugh. THE DAUGHTER walks up. The FATHER holds out his free arm, embraces his DAUGHTER, pulls her close, kisses her cheek.
HONEY lifts her smart phone into frame, takes a photo. The wrist of her hand is bound with a dirty bandage.
3 EXT. PUB. DAY
HONEY sits in a battered old blue Holden sedan, outside a pub in a small arid outback Australian town.
4 INT. CAR. DAY
HONEY, wearing jeans and an open neck shirt, bundles her hair and ties it in a knot, her eyes on the family. One arm is bandaged from wrist to elbow.
On the seat beside her is a tattered blue teddy bear with one eye and one arm missing. Her journal rests in her lap, the open double page filled with:
Colourful drawings, inspirational hand-written quotes, snippets of poems, a photo of an octopus cut from a magazine, an artist's impression of Joan of Arc burning at the stake, a photo of herself with short blonde hair, a leaf etc.
HONEY turns to two blank pages. She writes:
How much blood…
She continues writing for a moment, then looks up to see:
The MOTHER, FATHER and DAUGHTER, walk out of the beer garden, laughing, past a table at which THREE MEN sit drinking beer.
HONEY'S face darkens as focuses on one of the three men:
JOHN, late 40's, his hair thinning, missing a few front teeth, his flushed red face sporting a three day beard. He is very drunk as he regales his companions with a tall story they clearly take with a grain of salt.
HONEY watches JOHN for a long moment before flicking back through a few pages of her journal (each one filled to the brim with words, images, photos, press clippings) to a slightly fire damaged photo of:
Honey, aged seven, sitting alongside Carol (her mother, we will learn) - her face broken with an exhilarated happy smile as she looks up at her smiling mother.
HONEY looks at the photo for a long moment; remembering.
5 INT. YOUNG HONEY'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
YOUNG HONEY, aged 7, lies awake in her bed; fear in her eyes. She clings to her blue teddy bear - both arms and eyes intact. She hears footsteps outside, turns to face away from the door to her room, closes her eyes.
Honey’s mother, CAROL (recognizable from the photo seen earlier), wearing a white night dress, opens the door, walks in, makes her way to Honey’s bed; kneels.
HONEY facing away from CAROL, opens her eyes; scared.
JOHN (voice off)
6 INT. CAR OUTSIDE PUB. LATE AFTERNOON
HONEY, asleep in the passenger seat, wakens in shock. JOHN, sitting in the driver's seat, drunk, reads her journal.
Fucken bitch cunt...
HONEY reaches out to grab her journal. JOHN throws it out the window, starts the car.
7 EXT. CAR OUTSIDE PUB. LATE AFTERNOON
HONEY leaps out of the car in a panic as JOHN starts to drive off. As she starts to pick up her broken journal - photos, newspaper clippings, pressed flowers etc, - JOHN stops a little down the road.
HONEY inspects her damaged journal. JOHN backs up, pulls alongside HONEY crouched at the side of the road.
HONEY shakes her head. JOHN staggers out of the car, grabs HONEY, pushes her into the passenger's seat.
8 INT. CAR OUTSIDE PUB. LATE AFTERNOON
HONEY flips through her journal as JOHN staggers around the back of the car and falls into the driver's seat. HONEY looks for something in her journal but can't find it. She panics as JOHN starts the car, pulls out onto the road.
9 EXT. CAR OUTSIDE PUB. LATE AFTERNOON
HONEY leaps from the moving car, runs back, looks for something in a panic but can't find it. And then she sees it, picks it up. It is:
The photo of herself and her mother.
10 INT. MOTEL ROOM. NIGHT
JOHN, in underpants only, sits on a single bed watching TV as he drinks from a longneck bottle of beer. He is very drunk.
HONEY, in jeans and shirt, sits on another bed, repairing her journal with sticky tape. She prepares to secures the photo of herself and her mother on the roller coaster alongside:
A photo of an octopus clinging to a rock underwater.
HONEY becomes aware that JOHN is standing beside her. She closes her journal, clutches it to her protectively.
HONEY looks at him, scared. She shakes her head.
Get into the fucken bed.
HONEY shakes her head. JOHN reaches out to grab her journal. HONEY clutches it to her chest. JOHN grabs her. HONEY breaks away from him, runs into the adjacent bathroom, stands under the shower recess, clutching her journal to her, terrified.
JOHN staggers to the door, a large hunting knife in his hand.
Get into the fucken bed.
HONEY shakes her head.
I don't care if you kill me.
JOHN holds the knife to his own throat.
It's me I'll fucken kill!
HONEY watches, transfixed, as JOHN runs the knife across his scrawny chest, draws blood. He reaches past HONEY, turns the shower tap on. Water showers down on HONEY. HONEY clutches her journal close to protect it from the water for a moment, then walks from the shower, past JOHN, into the bedroom, calmly wiping water from her journal.
She places it on the table, moves to JOHN'S bed, lies on her back, stares at the ceiling.
JOHN, knife at his side, watches her, drops the knife, staggers to the bed, flops alongside HONEY.
You’re a fucken mad bitch, Katie!
HONEY turns to him, grabs him, wraps her arms around him, holds him tight.
JOHN pats her reassuringly: “It's OK”.
11 INT. YOUNG HONEY'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
YOUNG HONEY, eyes open, listens. She can hear CAROL’ breathing as she stands staring at the back of her head.
There is madness CAROL’S tear-filled eyes as she reaches out, as if to touch HONEY.
HONEY can see the shadow of CAROL’S out-stretched arm. Her eyes open wide in terror.
CAROLD turns, walks to the door, closes it quietly behind her.
YOUNG HONEY turns quickly, stares at the door, puzzled. She sits up; thinking.
12 EXT. YOUNG HONEY'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
From outside, framed by a window, YOUNG HONEY, clutching her blue teddy bear is seen walking from her bed to the window. She looks out of it, puzzled.
When the significance of what she is looking at dawns on her, YOUNG HONEY'S
puzzlement turns into fear.
13 INT. MOTEL ROOM. NIGHT
HONEY wakes in a panic, her face wet with sweat. She stares at the ceiling for a
long moment, a 'mad' look in her eyes. JOHN is asleep beside her, snoring.
HONEY swings her legs off the bed, stands, sees the hunting knife lying on the floor. She stares at it.
HONEY walks up to the bed, stares at JOHN. Her breathing is heavy and fast.
HONEY raises the knife slowly to shoulder level with her right bandaged arm, her whole body shaking.
14 INT. CHURCH. DAY
CLOSE ON JASPER as she walks down the aisle of the church, a bunch of flowers in her hands. The congregation is small.
JASPER (voice over)
When Honey asked me what I wanted most in my life I said, 'Well, I know one thing for sure. The last thing I want is to be normal.'
Loud heavy metal rock and roll.
15 INT. JASPER’S BEDROOM. DAY
Loud heavy metal rock and roll continues over JASPER, earphones in her ears, hair tied in a tight pony tail, pencil moustache glued to her upper lip, bopping along to the music.
JASPER is skinny, flat-chested and has a silver crucifix hanging from her neck. She stands in front of a mirror playing air-guitar, imagining herself an androgynous rock star. She tries out different stock rock-star facial expressions. When she has found the one she likes most (macho ‘don’t fuck with me’) she takes a photo of her reflected image with her smart phone.
16 INT. DINING ROOM. DAY
Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto in E minor, Opus 64 is heard over: HELEN, mid 30's, pretty, her blonde streaked hair stylishly groomed, holding a framed photo. She looks at it for a long moment, sadness in her eyes as she remembers.
A white leather lounge suite and large aquarium filled with exotic tropical fish dominate and neat, tidy and spotlessly clean room. The walls are adorned with framed black and white professionally shot photos.
HELEN looks at the photo of:
A 9 year old girl who looks more than a little like Jasper, a violin and bow in one hand, looking with a happy smile up at the woman by her side. The woman, in her mid 30s, bears a striking resemblance to Helen.
17 INT. JASPER'S BEDROOM. DAY
JASPER, wearing a dress, her lips bright red, stuffs socks into her training bra, appraises her reflected image, reaches behind her neck, unties her pony tail and lets her long blonde hair fall around her shoulders. She shakes her head, flicks her hair with her fingers until she has achieved the desired ‘ruffled’ look, takes a photo with her smart phone.
18 INT. DINING ROOM. DAY
HELEN finishes hammering a stud into the wall, pauses for a moment to pay full attention to a much-loved part of the Mendelssohn's violin concerto in E minor.
She moves across the room, past the dining table set for three, turns up the volume on state-of-the art music deck; lingers for a moment, eyes closed, savouring the music.
19 INT. JASPER'S BEDROOM. DAY
JASPER stares at her smart phone; at a photo of herself:
A beautiful young woman with breasts, her face framed by a mane of golden blonde
20 INT. DINING ROOM. DAY
HELEN lifts the photo of the girl with the violin and her mother and hangs it from the stud in the wall. The stud gives way, the photo falls, disappears from frame. The sound of shattering glass.
21 INT. JASPER'S BEDROOM. DAY
JASPER stares at herself in the mirror for a long moment, looks down at:
A pair of scissors on the dressing table.
22 INT. BATHROOM. DAY
HELEN stands in front of a three mirrored bathroom cabinet looking at the small cut on her finger.
As she lifts her bloody finger to put it in her mouth she looks back at her reflection in the mirror. Dissatisfied with what she sees, HELEN opens one of the mirror doors so that she can see a reflection of her profile. She then reaches out to move the third mirror so that she can see her other profile and catches, in reflection:
JASPER, her hair cut crudely short. HELEN reacts with shock.
23 EXT. DESERT LANDSCAPE. DAY
John’s Blue Holden drives on a deserted highway through a vast desert landscape.
NEWS READER (radio)
…Another scorcher predicted for today…
24 INT. CAR. DAY
CLOSE ON Honey’s journal:
A collage - a pressed flower, a caricature of a smiling octopus, a post card of a green fern seedling curling up from barren bushfire-burnt soil, a photo of Honey with red hair.
HONEY, in the passenger seat, positions the photo of herself and her mother but seems to be in two minds about sticking it back into her journal.
Her left arm is bandaged from wrist to elbow with a fresh white bandage. The bandage on her right arm is dirty and tattered. Her battered blue teddy bear, one arm missing, sits on the dash.
NEWS READER (radio)
…with no relief in sight for the heat that…
HONEY reaches out to change the station. JOHN, driving, sips beer from a bottle, reaches out to stop her.
NEWS READER (radio)
…saw temperatures in the high 30s yesterday…
HONEY withdraws her hand for a moment. When JOHN withdraws his, she reaches out quickly and changes to a music channel:
“One day a near Selina Lord, I let him slip away…”
JOHN smiles, hands the bottle of beer to HONEY.
“He's lookin' for that home, and I hope he finds it…”
As HONEY takes a swig of beer, JOHN turns the music down.
“But I'd trade all of my tomorrows for one single yesterday to be…”
HONEY reaches out, turns the music up again. JOHN holds his hands up: “OK, you
win.” HONEY smiles, returns to her journal.
“…holdin' Bobby's body next to mine…”
25 EXT. OUTBACK ROAD. DAY
John's beat up old blue Holden passes a sign: THANK YOU FOR VISITING SOUTH AUSTRALIA. Singing over from the radio.
“Freedom's just another word for nothing left to loose…”
26 EXT. ROADSIDE CAFÉ. DAY
HONEY stands by the driver’s door, rolling the sleeves of her shirt over her bandaged arms. She is not happy.
JOHN, in the drivers seat, hands her a cheque book through the window. She glares at him, turns petulantly and walks towards the café. JOHN watches her, takes out a cigarette.
27 INT. ROADSIDE CAFE. DAY
HONEY carries meat pies, a loaf of sliced white bread and assorted junk food to the counter.
HONEY places a cheque on the counter. The PROPRIETRESS behind the counter notices the bandages protruding from her sleeves, points to a sign: SORRY NO CHEQUES
Dad's wallet got stolen.
The PROPRIETRESS glances to where JOHN, in the background, fills the car with petrol. She raises her eyebrows questioningly. HONEY flashes an innocent young girl's smile.
Cross my heart and hope to die.
Well I hope you don't die, dear. Not for a long time yet.
A LITTLE LATER
HONEY standing in the doorway of the café, clutching her arm full of food. The PROPRIETRESS looks at bandages protruding from HONEY'S short sleeves.
Does your mother know where you are?
In the background JOHN can be seen leaning against the car, smoking a cigarette, watching HONEY like a hawk.
My mother's dead.
Oh, I'm sorry dear. So it's just you and your dad?
HONEY looks back towards JOHN, nods.
28 INT. CAR. OUTBACK ROAD. DAY
JOHN drives on a deserted outback road. HONEY sweats profusely, her face pale, looking fearfully at her shoulder, as if there was something frightening resting there.
JOHN looks at HONEY with concern.
HONEY covers her ears, closes her eyes, opens them, tries to flick away whatever it
is she sees on her shoulder.
JOHN takes a vial of pills from his pocket, hands them to HONEY. With shaking hands, her eyes on her shoulder, HONEY tips out 10 or so pills. JOHN knocks them from her hand.
HONEY nods, picks up three tablets, throws them in her mouth. JOHN hands her his can of beer. HONEY washes the pills down with a swig, looks at her shoulder again - terrified.
HONEY, calm now (the pills have worked) is flicking through photos stored on her smart phone:
‘Selfies’ of Honey taken over the past couple of years, with a variety of different hair styles and colours, and eccentric modes of dress.
HONEY looks at JOHN, at her bandaged arms, at the road ahead; thinking. She looks back at JOHN again. He turns and smiles at her. HONEY ignores him. HONEY looks back down at her smart phone, finds the photo she is looking for:
A wide shot of the beer garden that includes John and his two companions and the happy family. Using her thumb and fore-finger, Honey zooms in on the family: mum, dad and daughter laughing together.
29 EXT. DANIEL'S HOUSE. LATE AFTERNOON
DANIEL, 40ish, pulls up on his Harley Davison, alongside a large white SUV in the driveway - in front of a large timber home of modern design.
JASPER runs through the front door and down the path.
As DANIEL gets off his motor-bike he registers JASPER'S short hair with shock.
HELEN appears in the front doorway.
Tell me you like it?
Before DANIEL has a chance to respond HELEN indicates with a shrug and upheld hands that she had nothing to do with this.
We had an agreement.
You and mum had an agreement!
DANIEL shakes his head. JASPER smiles seductively, holds out her arms. DANIEL holds up his hands (’No’), walks past her, towards HELEN - who makes an ‘I don’t know what to say’ gesture. JASPER pouts for a moment, runs after her father.
30 EXT. OUTBACK AUSTRALIA. CLOSE TO SUNSET
HONEY crouches close to the edge of a bluff overlooking a vast outback landscape, a box of matches in her hands. In front of her is a pile of leaves and twigs.
HONEY strikes a match, places it under the leaves and twigs, watches as the fire bursts into life.
HONEY, mesmerized by the flames for a long moment, extracts credit cards with a variety of names, and throws them into the fire. She extracts a driver's license with a photo of herself with short hair and throws it in the fire. Then a Medicare card.
Deep in the background JOHN paces impatiently up and down beside the blue Holden.
HONEY takes from her pocket the photo of herself and her mother, Carol, seen earlier, throws it into the fire. She watches as the edges turn brown and begin to burn.
In a sudden movement she reaches down and plucks the photo from the fire.
31 INT. DINING ROOM. DUSK
JASPER, face up close to the aquarium, purses her lips, kisses a tropical fish on the other side of the glass as DANIEL, in the background, pours kerosene into the burner at the base of the chafing dish on the dining room table while HELEN moves first course dishes aside.
You want to look like a boy?
JASPER turns to face DANIEL - grins, nods.
You and mum always wanted a boy.
Not a Tomboy.
DANIEL lights the burner under the chafing dish.
Well, if you and mum make me a brother I'll grow my hair and act like a girl.
Will you now?
HELEN pours Brandy from the bottle into a measuring cup as JASPER walks up, dips her finger in a pot of honey, puts her finger in her mouth.
You washed your hands?
JASPER ignores HELEN as she pours the Brandy into the pan.
Anyhow, it's my hair!
Your mother just asked you question!
Yes, I've washed my hands… millions of times.
Jas, you asked if you could cut your hair. We said no. It's…
But it's my hair and…
When you're an adult you can choose, but…
Jasper! How many times…?
Hey, you two! I really do not want an argument right now…
The Brandy in the flambé pan is boiling now.
When's a good time for an argument, mum?
HELEN smiles, takes a long match from a box.
How about 10.15 tomorrow? I think! Have to check my diary.
JASPER laughs. HELEN strikes the match alight.
You want honey or maple syrup?
HELEN smiles as she lights the Brandy fumes. Flames leap up.
JASPER grins at DANIEL. He smiles, shakes his head playfully: ‘What are we going to do with you?’ JASPER smiles happily.
32 INT. CAR. NIGHT
HONEY drives. She is happy. JOHN is sound asleep in the passenger seat, unfazed by the loud disco music.
HONEY looks at the speedometer:
100 kms per hour.
She presses hard on the accelerator.
120 kms per hour
HONEY smiles to herself, turns the music up. Loud.
33 INT. JASPER'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
JASPER lies in bed. DANIEL stands by the door, his hand on the light switch. JASPER holds her arms out, beckoning.
DANIEL moves to Jasper's bed, leans in to kiss her on the cheek. JASPER smiles, wraps her arms around DANIEL'S neck, tries to pull him close. DANIEL resists, tickles JASPER till she releases him in a gale of laughter. DANIEL pouts his lips, kisses JASPER on the lips.
Not a fish kiss.
DANIEL pouts his lips even more - pretends to be a fish - kisses her again. JASPER laughs.
34 INT. BATHROOM. NIGHT
DANIEL cleans his teeth in an en suite bathroom. Through the doorway, in the bedroom, HELEN sits immobile on the edge of the double bed.
35 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
HELEN, lost in her memories - looking at a leaflet:
IN REQUIEM written above a photo of her mother. Underneath, the words: “To thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man.”
DANIEL stands in the doorway, looks at HELEN for a long moment, walks forward, puts his hand affectionately on her shoulder. She makes it clear she does not want to be touched. DANIEL nods, moves his hand away.
36 INT. JASPER'S ROOM. NIGHT
JASPER holds her hands in prayer under her chin.
Please take good care of grandma in heaven and tell her I miss her heaps and…well, if it's not too much to ask, a baby brother would be…awesome…
37 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
DANIEL lie apart in the dark. HELEN stares at the ceiling. DANIEL, lying on his side, reaches out, strokes her hair. She does not respond to his touch but, after a long moment, turns to look at DANIEL - her eyes glistening with tears.
HELEN brushes the tears from her eyes, gestures with her hands: “I don't want to talk about it.” DANIEL nods, stares back up at the ceiling, caught up in some inner turmoil.
HELEN turns away, caught up in her own inner turmoil.
38 EXT. SIDE OF HIGHWAY. NIGHT
John’s car is parked in a culvert at the side of the highway. HONEY finishes unscrewing the rear number plate, places it in the open trunk, alongside boxes of electronic equipment. She selects another number plate from a small pile.
39 EXT. GAS STATION. NIGHT
JOHN finishes filling the tank with petrol.
HONEY watches him from the driver’s seat, his eyes also on the INDIAN CASHIER
serving another motorist inside.
JOHN lingers at the bowser until HONEY nods - the cashier’s attention focused on swiping the customer’s credit card.
JOHN gets into the passenger seat. HONEY drives out of the gas station, fast. The INDIAN CASHIER can be seen in the background running out towards the bowsers.
40 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
DANIEL and HELEN lie in bed - DANIEL with his eyes on the ceiling, HELEN turned away from him. She turns, looks at DANIEL, an intensity in her eyes; a longing that is driving her crazy. DANIEL pretends not to notice.
Daniel? (A BEAT) Look at me.
DANIEL exhales. He does not want to.
HELEN moves close, takes his head in her hands, forces DANIEL to look at him. He complies unwillingly. She moves her head close to his, kisses him on the lips. A passionate kiss. DANIEL allows the kiss to happen but does not reciprocate.
DANIEL stares at her with a mixture of hurt and confusion.
HELEN takes off her nightie sits astride him, reaches down, takes his cock in her hand.
DANIEL does nothing to either stop HELEN or encourage her.
They stare at each other for as long as it takes for HELEN’S HAND to make his cock erect and herself ready to accept it. HELEN then lowers herself onto it, guides it inside her.
DANIEL reaches up, grabs two handfuls of HELEN’S hair, pulls her head down, kisses her passionately.
HELEN’S eyes, wide open, are just centimeters from DANIEL’S eyes - resolutely closed.
As they have wild animal sex DANIEL closes his eyes. HELEN keeps her eyes open.
41 INT. JASPER'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
JASPER reads an illustrated bible book - the double page spread in front of her:
Above an illustration of scantily clad women and lecherous men looking up at the yellow liquid descending upon them from on high, “THEN THE LORD RAINED DOWN BURNING SULPHUR ON SODOM AND GOMORRAGH.”
42 EXT. SYDNEY HARBOUR BRIDGE. NIGHT
The blue Holden drives across the Harbour Bridge, the Sydney Opera House in the background.
43 INT. CAR. NIGHT
HONEY looks excitedly through the windscreen as she drives over the Harbour Bridge. JOHN is asleep in the passenger seat, snoring. HONEY nudges him.
Wake up y'old codger!
JOHN wakes, looks out the window.
Well here we be! Good on ya, Katie. You're a good girl.
And you're a bad man.
Could eat the crotch out of a low flying crow.
Only problem is...
HONEY looks at him.
We’re skint. Not a brass razoo...
But you said...
I know what I fucken said.
Shut the fuck up...
HONEY withdraws into herself.
44 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
DANIEL looks up at the ceiling. HELEN, asleep, is snuggled up to him, her left hand on his chest. DANIEL takes her hand and moves if gently from his chest. He then slips out of bed, careful not to wake her.
DANIEL finishes dressing, turns and sees HELEN looking at him. She shakes her head, smiles, holds her arms out to him beckoning him to come back to bed.
I won't be long.
HELEN nods, withdraws her arms.
45 INT. JASPER'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
JASPER, asleep, wakes as she hears a door close. She gets out of bed, walks to the window, stands in the dark, watching:
DANIEL push his Harley down the street, kick-start it.
She returns to her bed, climbs into it, lies in the dark; thinking. With one hand she reaches up, takes hold of the silver crucifix around her neck, shuts her eyes and prays silently. She hears a door close, opens her eyes, looks to the door to her room.
The crack at the bottom of the door lights up. She hears her mother’s footsteps in the hallway.
46 EXT. CITY STREET. NIGHT
DANIEL, on his Harley, drives along a suburban road - a camera hanging around his neck. He leans into a sharp curve. The footrest grazes the bitumen, sends up red sparks.
47 INT. HELEN AND DANIEL’S ROOM. NIGHT
JASPER walks into her parents’ empty bedroom, walks to a window overlooking the back yard, through which she sees:
HELEN making her way from the back door, past the swimming pool, to the ‘Granny Flat’ at the rear of the property.
48 EXT. CAR. HARRY’S CAFE DE WHEELS. WOOLOOMOOLOO. NIGHT
The blue Holden is parked opposite HARRY’S CAFE DE WHEELS. Inside the car
HONEY and JOHN pool their small change.
Enough for one pie! One fucking pie!
OK, OK, don’t fucken rub it in. I’ll think of something...
49 INT. 'GRANNY FLAT'. DANIEL AND HELEN'S HOUSE. NIGHT
HELEN, her cheeks streaked with tears, sits on the bed.
There are several vases filled with dead and wilting flowers. HELEN stands, takes a bunch of dead flowers from a vase, holds them for a moment as tears well. She wills herself not to cry, puts the dead flowers back in the vase.
JASPER (voice off)
HELEN turns. JASPER, in her nightdress, is standing in the doorway. HELEN wipes the tears from her eyes.
JASPER shakes her head, walks up wraps her arms around HELEN.
50 EXT. KING'S CROSS. NIGHT
DANIEL drives past night clubs, strip joints and hookers in Sydney's 'red light' district.
51 INT. ‘GRANNY FLAT’. NIGHT
HELEN lying in the bed, covers thrown back, opens her arms, beckons JASPER with a smile. JASPER climbs in beside her mother, places her head on HELEN’S breast.
I can hear your heart going boom boom, boom…really fast.
HELEN smiles, strokes JASPER'S hair affectionately.
52 EXT. KING'S CROSS BACK STREET. NIGHT
DANIEL drives past a mobile 'soup kitchen' from which food is being dispensed to HOMELESS PEOPLE. He waves. Some wave back.
53 EXT. HARRY’S CAFE DE WHEELS. WOOLOOMOOLOO. NIGHT
DANIEL drives past the blue Holden, inside which HONEY and JOHN argue, turns left, drives into darkened back streets.
54 INT. CAR. NIGHT
HONEY, subdued, her anger held in, sits alongside JOHN.
You wanna fucken eat or what?
HONEY stares at JOHN, open-mouthed in shock.
JOHN avoids eye-contact, opens a bottle of pills, indicates to HONEY to hold out her hand. She shakes her head.
Hold out ya fucken hand.
HONEY winces, holds out her hand. JOHN tips three into HONEY’s outstretched palm. She throws them into her mouth, swallows them with a grimace. HONEY grabs the pill bottle out of JOHN’S hands. He doesn’t try to stop her.
Just be careful...
HONEY glares at him.
55 INT. ‘GRANNY FLAT’. NIGHT
JASPER lies with her head on HELEN’S breast.
Did I do something to hurt dad's feelings?
What makes you think that?
JASPER shrugs, hugs HELEN tight. HELEN strokes JASPER'S hair.
He doesn't dad want to cuddle me anymore.
Because you're a young woman now.
But I haven't even got any boobs yet.
You don't need boobs to be a woman.
Why's it OK to cuddle you but not dad?
When you're older you'll understand.
When I'm a woman?
HELEN laughs, holds JASPER tight.
56 EXT. BACK STREET. WOOLLOOMOOLOO. NIGHT
DANIEL drives slowly, looking for someone. Up ahead he sees GRANT, late 60s, shuffling along the footpath pushing a supermarket trolley filled with his worldly possessions.
DANIEL stops, gets off his motor bike, grabs the camera slung around his neck, slinks across the road - stalking GRANT, camera at the ready, looking for a good angle.
As he prepares to take a photo a police car drives by, siren blaring. GRANT turns to look at the police car. Click.
DANIEL has captured the moment. GRANT sees DANIEL, recognizes him, waves.
DANIEL smiles, raises his hand in greeting.
57 EXT. KINGS CROSS. NIGHT
HONEY, a small backpack slung over her shoulder, stands at the side of the road in Kings Cross, keeping her distance from THREE PROSTITUTES who do not appreciate the youthful competition. HONEY looks miserable.
JOHN watches her the other side of the road.
A car pulls up. HONEY walks up to the passenger window, leans in, talks for a moment to the (unseen) driver. HONEY makes eye contact with JOHN, gets into the car. It drives off.
58 EXT. GRANT'S 'HOME'. NIGHT
DANIEL hands GRANT a supermarket grocery bag, sits with him on a section of pavement that is Grant's 'home'. GRANT’S hair is matted, unwashed; his clothes dirty.
Have to check my diary.
DANIEL smiles, hands GRANT a post card photo of:
Grant, eyes blazing in his ragged face, staring into the camera in a moment of intense intimacy. Across the photo are the words GRACE OF GOD.
GRANT looks at the photo, turns it over, reads what is written there, hands it back to
I prefer my memories.
59 INT. BACK STREET. NIGHT
HONEY sits in the passenger seat, looking nervously at a YOUNG MAN in the driver's seat. He is as nervous as she is.
You'll think I'm totally weird.
I don't do…weird stuff…
It's not that…
Tears well in his eyes.
I'm just…so lonely.
HONEY reaches out, takes his hand.
The YOUNG MAN starts to cry. So does HONEY. They look at each other crying and can't help but laugh.
Told you I was weird.
Hey, join the club.
You wanna drink?
HONEY nods. The YOUNG MAN reaches into the back seat and produces a cask of wine.
60 EXT. GRANT'S 'HOME'. NIGHT
Seen through the lens of Daniel's camera:
GRANT holds a freshly opened packed of cigarettes out to DANIEL - who takes a photo. Click. DANIEL refuses a cigarette with a shake of his head, lowers the camera.
Trying to resist temptation.
GRANT reaches for Daniel's camera.
Want to get a photo of you trying to resist temptation.
DANIEL laughs hands GRANT his camera.
I've just got to press this button, right?
DANIEL nods, looks into the lens. He waits and waits.
What are you waiting for?
For you to look like you're resisting temptation.
DANIEL laughs. Click. A happy snap!
You a happy man, Daniel?
DANIEL smiles, looks at GRANT - whose eyes are focused on his. DANIEL is unnerved by the intensity of his stare.
Maybe that’s not the right question?
61 INT. GRANNY FLAT. NIGHT
JASPER is asleep on HELEN'S breast. The fingers of one of JASPER'S hands are intertwined with HELEN'S.
HELEN’S face is a battle-field of emotions.
62 INT. CAR. KINGS CROSS. NIGHT
HONEY, quite drunk, the cask of wine resting in her lap, indicates to the YOUNG MAN, driving, to drop her close to JOHN, standing on the pavement ahead. The YOUNG MAN slows.
No, keep driving…
HONEY, plastic cup in hand, slinks low in the seat as they drive past JOHN, a look of panic in her eyes.
63 EXT. GRANT'S 'HOME'. NIGHT
DANIEL and GRANT sit in companionable silence.
Question is, is the ‘pursuit of happiness’ the most important goal to aspire to in life?
DANIEL laughs, shakes his head.
If not happiness, what?
GRANT smiles, shakes his head.
Fucked if I know, Danny Boy, fucked if I know...Hope I can figure it out before I die.
64 INT. YOUNG MAN’S CAR. BACK STREET. NIGHT
The YOUNG MAN looks at HONEY with tenderness and concern.
You gunna be OK?
The YOUNG MAN nods.
HONEY gets out of the car, walks down the street towards a building construction site; cask of wine in her hand.
The YOUNG MAN watches her with concern, reaches for his mobile phone.
65 EXT. BUILDING SITE. BACK STREET. NIGHT
HONEY sits in the gutter drinking wine from a plastic cup, the wine cask on the pavement beside her. She wipes tears dismissively from her eyes, opens her backpack, extracts John's knife, stares at it, takes another big slug of wine.
HONEY carrying the wine cask, scales a wire mesh fence, walks to stairs of the building under construction.
66 EXT. BUILDING SITE. 10TH FLOOR. NIGHT
HONEY arrives at the 10th floor, walks to within a few feet of the edge. There is no wall. She moves closer to the edge. Police sirens are heard.
67 EXT. GRANT'S 'HOME'. NIGHT
GRANT puffs on a cigarette. He holds it out to DANIEL, who shakes his head. The police sirens grow louder.
You’ve got to die of something.
DANIEL smiles, shakes his head, his attention focused on the loud sound of an approaching Fire Engine.
68 EXT. BUILDING SITE. 10TH FLOOR. NIGHT
HONEY stands at the edge of the building, looking down. A police car pulls up. She upends the cask of wine, opens the spigot, drinks from it, picks up the knife, runs the tip of its blade across her heavily scarred arm.
Close to the edge, knife in hand, HONEY looks down to where two police cars are parked, lights flashing.
69 EXT. GRANT'S 'HOME'. NIGHT
DANIEL listens to the Fire Engine siren. It stops. It has pulled up out of sight closeby but it's flashing lights reflect in the windows of a building at the end of the street.
DANIEL grabs his camera from GRANT, stands.
70 EXT. 10TH FLOOR/STREET. NIGHT
Standing dangerously close to the edge, more than a little drunk, HONEY'S attention is focused on the flashing red light of the fire engine. DANIEL runs into the frame.
The rest of this sequence is split between what takes place on 10th floor and what DANIEL sees through his lens and records in a succession of photos.
HONEY looks from the fire engine lights to the unseen but terrifying tormentor resting on her shoulder. She tries to flick it away. There is a 'mad' look in her eyes.
She does not notice young CONSTABLE DAVID (early 20s) who has joined her on the 10th floor.
CONSTABLE DAVID (voice off)
HONEY swings around, stares at the POLICEMAN. Her balance at the edge is precarious.
CONSTABLE DAVID (kindly)
I'm David. And you?
HONEY ignores the question.
DANIEL, in the street, looks up, takes photos as CONSTABLE DAVID moves closer to HONEY. He speaks gently but we do not hear what he says.
CONSTABLE DAVID takes a step forwards. HONEY edges back, perilously close to the edge, moving the tip of the knife to a point midway between her breasts.
CONSTABLE DAVID stops, holds his arms up to indicate that he will move no closer.
HONEY looks down, sees:
Crowd in the street, including DANIEL, looking up.
You know if you stab yourself right there you'll hit your sternum and it'll hurt like hell but you won't get your heart.
HONEY shifts the tip of the knife.
A bit more to the left and make sure you find a gap between the ribs…
HONEY stares at him. This is not the script she had in mind.
Aren't you…like…supposed to…talk me out of killing myself.
Nah, I just want to make sure you do it properly and don't make too much of a mess. Coz you know who has to clean it up!?
HONEY drops the hand with the knife in it to her side.
Life sucks and then you die, ay?
I want more than that.
Join the club.
Is there a joining fee?
DAVID smiles, steps forward, reaches out and takes the knife from her hand.
HONEY falls into his arms, holds him tight.
71 EXT. STREET OUTSIDE BUILDING SITE. NIGHT
As CONSTABLE DAVID leads HONEY out into the street a SECOND POLICEMAN joins him - a pair of handcuffs in his hands. HONEY sees the handcuffs.
CONSTABLE DAVID gestures to the SECOND POLICEMAN to back off, put the hand-cuffs away, but it is too late - HONEY bolts down the street, straight towards where DANIEL stands taking photos. The SECOND POLICEMAN catches HONEY quickly and roughly. HONEY puts up a fight, screams like a banchee.
Let me go…fucking arsehole…
HONEY screams as she kicks and scratches the SECOND POLICEMAN.
CONSTABLE DAVID steps between them, pushing the SECOND POLICEMAN away. DANIEL keeps taking photos.
HONEY holds her arms out towards DANIEL: a plea for help. DANIEL takes a photo. Click.
A LITTLE LATER
CONSTABLE DAVID opens the back door to the paddy wagon for HONEY as the Fire Engine drives off.
I want to sit up the front with you?
That's not a nice thing to call a lady!
72 INT. PADDY WAGON. NIGHT
HONEY, backpack in her lap, sits between CONSTABLE DAVID and the SECOND POLICEMAN who is driving. CONSTABLE DAVID has emptied the contents of Honey's wallet in his lap.
Just arrived from outer space. I’m an alien.
Got a name, I hope!
No-one in particular.
Gotta be someone.
Okay, you can call me 'someone'.
How old are you, 'someone'?
Sixteen. What about you guys? (A BEAT) Your names, I mean.
Your first name's 'constable'!?
Davo. And you?
Trev and Davo. You both got girlfriends? Boyfriends?
73 INT. DARKROOM
DANIEL, bathed in red dark room light, immerses a white sheet of photographic paper in a tray of developing solution. A ghost image appears. It is Honey, struggling with the police.
74 INT. POLICE STATION. NIGHT
HONEY draws a caricature of the DUTY SERGEANT in her journal. TREVOR and DAVID and OTHER POLICE are in the room.
I'm hungry, I need a meat pie or something, and a can of coke and…
The POLICE are not sure how to deal with HONEY.
…and I've got my period so I need some tampons and…
Now hang on a second, missy 'someone'. You can't just…order us around like you own the place.
Police are public servants, right?
The DUTY SERGEANT nods warily.
And I'm a member of the public, right?
The DUTY SERGEANT smiles. The OTHER POLICEMEN laugh.
Don't suppose any of you guys have a durri do you?
The DUTY SERGEANT holds a packet of cigarettes out to HONEY.
75 INT. DANIEL'S STUDIO. NIGHT
DANIEL stands in front of a rack with a dozen or so 10 x 8 photos hanging from it. We see them from behind, their white backs only. As DANIEL looks at them it becomes clear that there is one, in particular, that excites him.
76 EXT. POLICE STATION. DAY
HELEN walks from a police station towards her car.
HELEN (voice off)
Officially, cops couldn't tell me anything… protocols, procedures, bla bla…
77 EXT. ART GALLERY. NIGHT
DANIEL, HELEN and JASPER (all dressed up in their best) make their way towards the Gallery entrance.
…unofficially…she's sixteen but won't tell them her name, where she's from…calls herself 'Someone'…I'll follow it up tomorrow…
DANIEL nods. HELEN takes his hand.
DANIEL kisses her on the cheek. JASPER takes DANIEL'S other hand as they walk past the DOORMAN.
78 INT. ART GALLERY. NIGHT
JASPER'S point of view as they walk into the gallery:
Well dressed PATRONS drink champagne, eat canapés, look at black and white photos of street people on the walls.
As they move into the crowded gallery, DANIEL is greeted by FRIENDS and PATRONS.
We follow JASPER at the level of her eyes as she moves through the crowd - eyes open, observing, glancing at photos, looking up at PATRONS, stopping in front of:
Jasmin, early 30s, dressed in a micro-mini skirt, tight tank-top, argues with a policeman - hands on his hips, exasperated, at the end of his tether. Jasmin challenges him - finger pointed just an inch from the policeman's nose.
JASPER stares at the photo, points her finger at it in imitation of Jasmin's gesture. She turns to see, through the crowd, DANIEL and HELEN walking up to the actual JASMIN - wearing high heels, short skirt, breasts barely contained by an uplift bra.
JASPER’S eyes open wide in wonder.
On the other side of the gallery, introductions:
My wife, Helen.
JASMIN smiles warmly.
HELEN smiles nervously.
You're even more beautiful than Danny said.
HELEN looks at DANIEL, smiles, links her arm through his.
You do know your husband is mad as a cut snake, don't you?
HELEN nods, laughs, relaxes.
On the other side of the gallery JASPER watches with interest as HELEN and JASMIN talk with increasing animation.
Elsewhere in the gallery DANIEL stands in front of a photo that is clearly an exhibition favourite. A slim YOUNG WOMAN, early 20s, flirts with DANIEL.
She's awesome…her eyes…wow! All the photos…I mean…
HELEN, talking with JASMIN, observes:
The YOUNG WOMAN laughing with DANIEL. She touches him on the chest, throws her head back; laughs. MIRIAM, middle aged, note pad in hand, taps DANIEL on the shoulder. He turns.
Daniel, I'm Miriam Coulter. From 'Art Today'.
DANIEL is pleasantly surprised.
Have you got a moment?
Elsewhere, HELEN and JASMIN continue their talk. DANIEL and MIRIAM can be seen talking in the background.
…from your photo…I thought you were pretty scary.
It's all an act. I'm a closet wimp…
HELEN smiles, sips her champagne.
Jasmin, I hope you don't mind… what… I mean…if you don't mind my asking…
'What's a nice girl like you doing working in a place like this?'
MIRIAM writes in her note book. HELEN and JASMIN can be seen talking in the background. JASMIN is doing most of the talking. HELEN nods, listens - intrigued; fascinated.
So, your first exhibition?
DANIEL nods. MIRIAM raises her eyebrows; surprised.
This is good work, Daniel. Very good. You should be proud. The photo of the girl…marvelous. Dynamic…
MIRIAM gestures to the photo with the crowd in front of it.
Back with HELEN and JASMIN. HELEN'S glass is being re-filled with champagne by a WAITER.
My fantasies!? Don't get me started…
Nothing shocks me anymore… French, Golden showers, B & D. I actually quite like B & D. Whipping men! Yeah! Not too keen on Greek, though…
HELEN, fascinated, does not notice JASPER'S approach.
Anal. And I won't kiss 'em. Not for any money. That's where I draw my line.
JASPER (voice off)
Who won't you kiss for money?
HELEN is shocked to discover JASPER standing beside her.
What's your name? I'm Jasmin.
I'm Jasper. This is my mother, Helen.
Let me guess, Jasper. Nine? Ten?
Nine and a half.
My son is…nine and three quarters. Donald.
You have a son!?
And a daughter, Abigail. Abbie's three.
Jasmin, what do prostitutes actually do to men?
JASMIN laughs. HELEN tenses up.
You should talk with your mum about that.
JASPER looks up at HELEN but she is blushing and speechless.
HELEN, lost for words, laughs a little nervously.
GALLERY OWNER (voice off)
The GALLERY OWNER, microphone in hand, stands in front of a large black and white photo of a bearded hobo (Grant) pushing a shopping trolley filled with his worldly possessions.
Well, Daniel, here we are. How many years has it taken? Eight?
For nine years Daniel, has been stalking the streets of Sydney late at night terrorizing his subjects with his camera…No, seriously…
79 EXT. ENTRANCE. ART GALLERY. NIGHT
GRANT approaches the front entrance to the art gallery with his shopping trolley.
GALLERY OWNER (voice off)
It is through Daniel's photos that we come to know those in our community that are all too often out of sight out of mind; hidden from view. It is through …
80 INT. ART GALLERY. NIGHT
HELEN looks proudly at DANIEL; JASPER swells with pride.
… Daniel's ability to get to know these men and women as individuals and not merely as subjects…
81 EXT. ENTRANCE. ART GALLERY. NIGHT
The GALLERY OWNER continues with his speech as GRANT stands smiling at the confused and embarrassed DOORMAN.
GALLERY OWNER (voice off)
…his ability to breach the gap between 'us' and 'them'…
I'm sorry sir but the gallery's not open to the public this evening.
GALLERY OWNER (voice off)
It is through Daniel's ability to get to know his subjects as friends…
82 INT. ART GALLERY. NIGHT
Through the crowd DANIEL can see the DOORMAN trying to block GRANT'S entrance into the gallery.
GALLERY OWNER (voice off)
…and through his skill with a lens that we may meet these unfortunate men and women who have fallen through society's many cracks…
PATRONS look towards the entrance.
I'm sorry sir.
83 EXT. ENTRANCE. ART GALLERY. NIGHT
The DOORMAN blocks GRANT'S entrance.
GALLERY OWNER (voice off)
…but who demand our understanding, our compassion.
GRANT pushes past the DOORMAN with his shopping trolley.
GALLERY OWNER (voice off)
Each of these men and women has a name, a history. They are someone's son, someone's daughter, someone's mother, father…
84 INT. ART GALLERY. NIGHT
All eyes turn to GRANT, smiling, pushing his shopping trolley towards DANIEL - delighted to see him.
Everyone, this is my friend, Grant.
GRANT holds his hand aloft to greet the PATRONS.
I changed my mind. So where is it?
DANIEL points to the photo of Grant. GRANT walks up, looks at it for a moment, leans close to DANIEL.
GRANT (sotto voce)
Still prefer m'memories.
The gallery PATRONS wait patiently and silently as DANIEL and GRANT have their sotto voce conversation.
Remember when old Charlie put his shoes on the wrong feet…
GRANT chuckles. DANIEL feels a little awkward.
Perhaps Grant would like to say a few words on behalf of the…men and women on the other side of the lens.
GRANT shakes his head. HELEN takes the microphone from the GALLERY OWNER, hands it to GRANT. He looks at the PATRONS, in no hurry, sees JASPER, smiles. JASPER smiles back.
I'm proud to have Daniel as a friend. He's a good bloke. There's been lots of nights…
GRANT sees the photo that drew so much attention earlier. He walks towards it, stands in front of it, looks at it closely:
HONEY, held firmly by two angry-looking policemen, stares with blazing eyes directly, questioningly, into the eyes of the viewer. Her partially unbuttoned shirt is open and part of one of her breasts can be seen.
What's her name, Daniel?
All eyes turn to DANIEL.
I don't know.
A deathly silence envelops the gallery.
I took it last night. (A BEAT) I don't know who she is.
I don't understand…you mean you don't have her consent?
DANIEL shakes his head.
The PATRONS are gone now. DANIEL stands in front of the photo of Honey, dejected. The GALLERY OWNER is switching off lights. DANIEL lifts the photo of Honey from the wall.
HELEN and JASPER stand in the doorway watching him. DANIEL looks over to HELEN - a desperate look in his eyes. His hands shake. HELEN starts to walk towards him. JASPER follows.
Jasper, I want to speak with your father. Alone.
JASPER nods, stops reluctantly. HELEN walks up to DANIEL.
No need to be a drama queen. It's a hiccup, not a death sentence.
HELEN indicates the photo in DANIEL’S hands.
We’ll track her down, get her consent...
DANIEL stares at HELEN - a haunted look in his eyes.
I don't want Jas to see you like this. (A BEAT) I mean...
From the other side of the gallery, JASPER watches as HELEN talks with DANIEL.
HELEN’S attempts to cajole him do not work. She gives up, walks back towards JASPER. DANIEL, his head lowered, stares at the floor.
JASPER walks towards DANIEL, passing HELEN half way across the gallery.
HELEN gestures to her to leave her father alone. JASPER ignores her, walks up to DANIEL, wraps her arms around his waist, hugs him tightly. DANIEL tries to smile for her.
DANIEL’S and HELEN’S eyes meet.
85 INT. CAR. NIGHT
HELEN drives, JASPER in the passenger seat.
If you had just one wish, one wish in the whole wide world, what would it be?
Your father’s going to be OK.
You’re just saying that to shut me up.
No, that’s not true. (A BEAT) OK, I wish that you'd stop asking me so many questions....so many difficult questions...so late at night.
What’s difficult about saying what you want?
HELEN thinks about this for a long moment.
What’s difficult is...not being sure what you want.
Telling the truth.
But...you think I don’t tell you the truth?
JASPER does not answer.
JASPER looks out the window. HELEN is annoyed.
86 EXT. HIGHWAY. NIGHT
The wheels of a motor bike spinning on an asphalt road.
DANIEL, wind in his hair, drives his Harley Davison fast - crash helmet and a blue duffle bag strapped to the back.
DANIEL opens the throttle, roars down the deserted highway.
87 YOUNG HONEY'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
YOUNG HONEY looks out the window of her bedroom at:
CAROL, in a white night dress, moving around in a storage shed in the back yard - filled with old furniture, boxes etc. Her movements are purposeful but it is difficult, from YOUNG HONEY'S POV to make out just what she is doing.
CAROL picks something up that is out of view.
YOUNG HONEY watches.
CAROL picks up a can of petrol, unscrews the cap.
As the significance of what she is looking at dawns on her, YOUNG HONEY'S fear turns into terror. She opens her mouth to scream.
88 INT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE CELL. NIGHT
HONEY jolts awake in her bed - her face pale, wet with sweat. She sits for a long moment, reaches for her journal, flips through to a page with a photo of a giant squid. She gently removes the sticky tape holding the photo in place. Hidden behind it is a razor blade.
89 EXT. DIRT ROAD. BLUE MOUNTAINS. DAWN
DANIEL is off the beaten track now, on a dirt road. As he leans into a sharp curve in the road the bike slides out from under him, skids sideways along the road, disappearing in a cloud of dust.
The dust clears. DANIEL lies beside his motor bike in the bush, opens his eyes, looks at the gash on his arm for a moment, feels his body for other wounds, stands, grimaces a little, rights his Harley, kick starts it, drives off.
90 EXT. CLIFF FACE. SUNRISE
DANIEL reaches into the blue duffle bag tied to the back of his Harley, takes out his climbing shoes and a leather pouch of chalk, which he attaches to his waist.
A LITTLE LATER
A foot, in a rock-climbing shoe, seeking out a cleft in the rock 20 feet from the ground.
DANIEL, 'solo climbing' (no ropes), clings to the face of a cliff - his concentration intense. He releases one hand, dips it into a leather chalk pouch at his waist, reaches up, his chalk-white fingers searching out something he can grip. He finds a small rock extrusion, explores it with his fingers, grips onto it. He releases one of his feet - moving it to a small cleft on the rock face.
91 CLIFF TOP. DAY
DANIEL, sweating, sits on top of the cliff looking out over a mountains and valleys, oblivious to his bleeding arm. The only sounds: the wind and occasional bird cries.
He takes a cigarette packet from his pocket, extracts a cigarette, holds it between his fingers, looks at it closely for a moment, puts it in his mouth, draws on it, unlit.
He takes out a box of matches, lights a match, watches the flame, lets the match burn right up to his fingers. He does not flinch as the flames burn him. The match burns itself out. DANIEL looks at his white burned fingers.
92 INT. KITCHEN. DAY
JASPER, dressed for school, eats her breakfast cereal.
You know how in fairy tales, the Prince and Princess always get to live happily ever after!
HELEN laughs, nods.
But even if they do live happily ever after, they still die like grandma and…
HELEN, smiles, holds a finger to her lips.
Shhhh! Eat you cereal. That’s an order!
JASPER opens her mouth to respond. HELEN runs a finger across her lips - zip.
JASPER smiles, runs her finger across her lips - zipping them shut. A game they play.
93 INT. CAR. DAY
HELEN drives. JASPER beside her, school backpack on her lap, is deep in thought. Out of a long moment of silence.
I’ve decided don't want to ever die.
No one wants to ever die.
That's not true.
What do you mean?
JASPER looks directly at HELEN, does not answer. HELEN breaks eye contact with JASPER.
94 INT. FOYER. OLD FACTORY. DAY
DANIEL, mobile to his ear, walks into an upmarket complex of studios for photographers and others involved in the advertising and fashion industries.
TRACY, early 30s, appears in a doorway, frowning, tapping her watch, shaking her head: “You naughty boy!”
95 INT. PHOTOGRAPHIC STUDIO. DAY
From a high perspective, framed by colourful Indian cloth, DANIEL can be seen walking through the door with TRACY into a large studio space - the furniture and interior design of which bespeaks his success as a commercial photographer.
You forgot, didn't you?
DANIEL looks across the studio to a glass-enclosed conference room in which 3 ADVERTIZING EXECUTIVES sit at a table. He grimaces, starts to walk towards them. TRACY stops him.
She takes his hands, looks at them.
DANIEL’S fingers are stained with white chalk dust.
TRACY shakes her head, wets her fingers with her tongue, wipes the chalk stains from his fingers. DANIEL submits to this sheepishly. TRACY notices the wound on DANIEL'S arm, shakes her head.
96 INT. DANIEL'S STUDIO. CONFERENCE ROOM. DAY
DANIEL, all smiles and good cheer, a band aid on his wounded arm, walks into the room.
Sorry, sorry, sorry…traffic!
The 3 AD EXECUTIVES smile effusively: “Not a problem.”
A LITTLE LATER
A mock up for an ad that features a family - mum, dad, son and daughter (Anglo-Saxon) smiling as they eat in a fast food restaurant.
AD EXECUTIVE (voice off)
We love this 100%…OK, 95%...
“FAST? Yes. NUTRITIOUS? Yes? CHEAP Yes? Let your taste buds be the judge.”
DANIEL sits at the table with the 3 AD EXECUTIVES. Referring to the mock-up ad in front of him:
…it's just…the daughter…her smile…
DANIEL'S attention is on his mobile phone on the table, vibrating. A message.
…perhaps there's something you could do in photoshop to make her look…happier…
Not a problem. How much happier? 10%? 20%? 50%?
The AD EXECUTIVES look at DANIEL, exchange glances.
Just joking. I’ll fix it, don’t worry. Now....(if you’ll excuse me)
DANIEL reaches for his phone, reads the message, walks out, leaving the AD EXECUTIVES looking confused.
97 INT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE. DAY
DANIEL and REBECCA (Welfare Officer, early 30's) walk down a corridor. DANIEL carries a large leather portfolio, crash helmet and his camera case slung around his shoulder.
She won't tell us her name. Has no ID so we don't...There's nothing we can do if we don't know who she is, where she's come from…
HONEY (voice off)
Give it to me! Fuck you, Melissa.
As DANIEL and REBECCA turn the corner they see:
HONEY, kicking and screaming, held by TWO YOUTH WORKERS to prevent her attacking a YOUTH WORKER (MELISSA) who holds her journal. DANIEL and
REBECCA stop a little distance away.
You going to behave yourself?
HONEY turns to REBECCA.
Tell her to give it to me.
MELISSA addresses REBECCA.
She won't do what she's told.
I don't have to obey your fucking rules. I shouldn't even be here.
REBECCA nods to MELISSA: “Give her journal back to her.” MELISSA thrusts the journal into HONEY'S hands aggressively.
MELISSA (sotto voce)
HONEY drops her journal, picks up a chair, throws it through a large window. Glass flies everywhere. The YOUTH WORKERS jump on HONEY. REBECCA joins them.
HONEY puts up quite a fight but is quickly subdued.
Held fast, HONEY registers DANIEL - staring at her. The beginnings of a smile appear on her face.
98 EXT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE RECREATION AREA. DAY
HONEY, clutches her journal, sitting alongside REBECCA. DANIEL sits next to REBECCA. In the background boys and girls (aged 12 - 16) are engaged in various leisure activities.
I don't want that slut to know my secrets.
HONEY looks past REBECCA at DANIEL.
Or anyone else…
Well, you can relax, 'someone' because I definitely don't want to know your secrets.
No-one can hurt you if they don't know who you are.
REBECCA pats HONEY affectionately on the knee.
Yes, but no-one can love you either if they don't know who you are.
You love me, Bec, and you don't know who I am.
They should name a hurricane after you. 'Hurricane…'someone''…
HONEY smiles, puts her arm around REBECCA, rests her head on her shoulder, but keeps her eyes on DANIEL.
Love is what hurts the most, eh?
But you can't live without love.
I'm not going to live without it.
HONEY looks at the crash helmet in DANIEL'S lap - against which he raps his fingers.
Bit old to be riding a motor bike, aren't you?
I'm going to leave you two to it.
REBECCA tries to stand. HONEY holds onto her.
Like men with comb-overs driving sports cars…
REBECCA disentangles herself from HONEY, stands.
No more chairs through windows, OK? Staff'll go on strike.
HONEY holds her hand out to DANIEL.
DANIEL opens his portfolio, takes out the photo, hands it to HONEY. She looks at it for a long moment. REBECCA walks off.
Who is this girl?
DANIEL watches HONEY, fascinated, as she looks at the photo.
It's not me.
HONEY looks at DANIEL. He raises his eyebrows questioningly.
I guess it's a little bit of me.
You got a cigarette?
HONEY looks at DANIEL'S nicotine-stained fingers.
HONEY takes DANIEL'S right hand, looks at it.
How many times?
HONEY touches DANIEL'S white blistered fingers.
How'd you burn your fingers?
HONEY points to the sticking plaster on DANIEL'S arm.
Accident. Motor bike.
Show me your arms.
DANIEL holds his arms out, palms upwards - more scars.
Rock climbing, motor bike…
We've got something in common, eh?
HONEY holds out her arms, palms held upwards. Her arms, from wrist to elbow, are covered in hundreds of scars.
Both accident prone.
Except mine aren't self-inflicted.
Whatever you say Mr Photographer. (A BEAT) So, you're gunna pay me to use this!
DANIEL nods, hands HONEY an envelope. She opens it, looks at the $100 bills, closes the envelope quickly, looks around to make sure that no-one has noticed, stuffs it in her pocket.
I’m going to need a name, though...
DANIEL takes a folded contract out of his pocket.
'Someone' won't be enough.
I can be whoever you want me to be.
But can you be whoever you want to be?
I try, but fuck it's hard. First figuring out who you want to be and then figuring out what you have to do to be that person. (A BEAT) Or are you just born how you are and you just have to live with that?
Ah, big question…
And the big answer?
DANIEL smiles, shakes his head.
You're the grown up here, you're supposed to have the answers.
DANIEL laughs. HONEY looks directly into his eyes, making him feel a little uncomfortable.
And how about you, Mr. Photographer? Are you who you really want to be?
'I try but fuck it's hard.'
Two things in common, eh?
HONEY nods, smiles shyly as she looks at DANIEL. He is confronted by this sudden intimacy. Referring to the photo:
Which bit is you?
I don't know, Daniel. She's a mystery to me this girl.
HONEY looks at DANIEL, head tilted to one side. There is a moment of intense intimacy here that DANIEL shies away from.
And the man who took the photo?
HONEY looks directly at DANIEL. He laughs, shakes his head, looks at his watch.
He's running very late and…
DANIEL waves the contract in the air. HONEY takes it, looks at it, positions her pen as if to sign it.
If he comes to visit me tomorrow she'll tell him her name and sign his contract.
He's busy tomorrow.
The next time he's not busy. And she'll make him a little list of things for him to bring.
DANIEL smiles, shakes his head.
DANIEL holds out his hand. HONEY shakes it. Laughs happily.
99 INT. REBECCA'S OFFICE. DAY
REBECCA stands at the window of her office, looking out to:
DANIEL and HONEY on the other side of the Recreation yard.
JOHN (voice off)
But I'm her father!
REBECCA turns, faces JOHN, seated closeby.
I don't set the bail conditions Mr.Williams.
JOHN, indignant, looks through the window at:
HONEY writing in her journal; DANIEL standing beside her.
100 EXT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE RECREATION AREA. DAY
HONEY finishes compiling a list, tears the page from her journal and hands it to DANIEL. He looks at it, laughs.
OK. I’ve...(got to go)
HONEY nods, smiles. DANIEL is unsure how to take his leave. HONEY walks up, stands close; very close.
My name's Honey. Short for Honesysuckle. Honeysuckele Williams. I'm not really bad and I'm not really mad, ‘but I am, it is true, a little bit sad’. That’s from one of my poems.
No more chairs through windows, Honeysuckle Williams, okay? (HONEY nods) Promise?
HONEY smiles, nods, turns and runs off to join her friends, not looking back.
DANIEL watches HONEY, in something of a state of shock.
101 INT. REBECCA'S OFFICE. DAY
JOHN, his face set hard, looks out through the window into the yard, his attention focused on DANIEL, looking at HONEY and her friends for a moment before turning to walk off.
102 EXT ROCKS. OCEAN BEACH. LATE AFTERNOON
DANIEL, carrying a fishing rod and a basket with bread, cheeses, bottle of wine towards:
HELEN and JASPER, fishing from the rocks. JASPER smiles as she sees her father approach. HELEN'S smile is more forced.
I've already organized dinner! At home!
DANIEL kisses HELEN on the cheek, blows a kiss to JASPER.
Just a few mosquitos.
A LITTLE LATER
DANIEL baits a hook. HELEN pours wine into two plastic cups.
Did she sign?
DANIEL shakes his head.
DANIEL holds his hand up: 'Not now'. HELEN is annoyed.
A LITTLE LATER
HELEN finishes her wine, her eyes on:
DANIEL and JASPER fishing nearby - chatting and laughing together. HELEN pours herself another cup, watches them.
103 INT. BEDROOM/EN SUITE BATHROOM. NIGHT
DANIEL cleans his teeth, his eyes on HELEN undressing in the adjacent bedroom. She is in a bad mood.
…step-dad's been pimping her but…
I don't understand why she didn't just sign today!
…but she won't make a statement against him…
And you let her keep the money! Sorry, but…!
Okay, what is it?
What is what?
You’re pissed of about something else, obviously!
And you can’t figure out what?
No, I’m not psychic.
That’s for sure!
DANIEL shakes his head. He does not want this argument!
That girl at the opening? The one who looked about 14 and couldn't keep her hands off you.
DANIEL holds his hand up: 'stop'.
Do you think she's attractive?
I'm not going to do this.
If I was a man I'd want to fuck her.
Stop. Helen. Please.
The thought didn’t occurred to you?
HELEN glares at DANIEL for a moment, crumbles, starts to cry, wipes tears from her eyes. DANIEL puts his arms around her.
Mum was the only one who understood me.
DANIEL nods, strokes HELEN'S hair. She looks up at him, her eyes brim full of pain and confusion. DANIEL kisses her lightly, affectionately, on the lips.
Why do you close your eyes when we kiss? When we fuck? Make love?
DANIEL has no answer.
104 EXT. RECREATION YARD. DAY
DANIEL, paper bag in hand, walks with REBECCA. They approach SIMMO, aged 15, looking through the window of the Gymnasium.
Simmo, you got nothing better to do?
She's fucking weird, Bec!
REBECCA indicates with a gesture that SIMMO should leave. He does. DANIEL and REBECCA look through the window at:
HONEY dancing alone in the gymnasium. No music can be heard.
105 INT. GYMNASIUM. DAY
HONEY dances gracefully, eyes closed. DANIEL steps into the silent gym. HONEY opens her eyes, smiles, holds her hand up in greeting as she dances in time to music only she can hear.
REBECCA smiles, indicates to DANIEL that she’ll leave him to it. HONEY dances on until REBECCA is gone.
You think I'm crazy?
Depends what you're dancing to! (A BEAT) My guess is…not heavy metal?
HONEY laughs, closes her eyes. DANIEL watches her; notices Honey's journal lying on the floor closeby.
HONEY stops dancing, walks to DANIEL, drops to the floor alongside her journal, legs crossed, pats the floor beside her: “Sit!” DANIEL sits, hands the paper bag to HONEY.
HONEY claps her hands excitedly, like a little girl, looks inside the paper bag - extracts a packet of cigarettes.
You shouldn't be smoking at all, you know.
Thanks for worrying about my lungs.
HONEY pulls out a bar of chocolate.
You're not worried about my teeth?
Thought you were busy today.
So, if not heavy metal…?
HONEY laughs, shakes her head. DANIEL gestures: 'What?'
You have to guess.
Is there a prize for guessing right?
Me. (A BEAT) Angel music.
No. No harps. Just voices.
They talk to you? The angels?
No, they just sing.
Can you see them?
You mean are they real? (A BEAT) Or just in my imagination? (A BEAT) If they weren't real I wouldn't be able to hear them, would I? Unless I was mad, of course. (A BEAT) But I'm not mad. And I'm not bad…
'But I am, it is true, a little bit sad.'
HONEY beams a happy smile.
And you? (A BEAT) When you're half way up one of your cliffs, do you ever think “I'll just step into space, leave my body, leave my aching heart with its scars…live with the angels forever?”
DANIEL and HONEY look at each other for a long moment.
What if there are no angels?
HONEY thinks for a moment, her eyes on DANIEL'S.
Life wouldn't be worth living if there weren't any angels.
HONEY pauses, suddenly vulnerable. DANIEL holds eye contact with her for a long moment before she shrugs, looks away for a moment, as if to break some spell and then back at DANIEL.
Have you got an angel watching over you?
DANIEL opens his wallet, takes out a photo of himself, Helen and Jasper: a happy family.
Helen and Jasper.
Jasper…born in March, right? Birthstone...
DANIEL smiles, nods. HONEY takes the photo, looks at it.
Was it love at first sight?
The moment she was born, yes.
I mean, when you met Helen?
About how you and Helen fell in love.
You really want to know?
A Saint-Saens Violin Concerto is heard low at first.
“Once upon a time...”
Once upon a time...
106 INT. DINING ROOM. DAY
HELEN fixes photos into a large white faux-leather covered album. A Saint-Saens Violin Concerto plays in the background.
A black and white photo of herself and Jasper asleep in bed, cuddling. It is a beautiful photo. Too beautiful, perhaps, as a result of the photoshop work that has been done on it.
HELEN'S many photo albums are spread out on the table in front of her and on the white leather couch she sits on.
107 EXT. GYMNASIUM. DAY
The Saint-Saens Violin Concerto continues over SIMMO looking in through the window at HONEY and DANIEL talking.
DANIEL (voice off)
…and I said yes she should and she said no she shouldn’t and I said yes and…
108 INT. GYMNASIUM. DAY
DANIEL and HONEY sit together on the floor.
…eventually she got tired of saying 'no'.
HONEY claps her hands excitedly.
Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes…my favorite word in the whole universe: 'Yes'!
…and nine months later Jasper was born.
Angel number two.
You want a third angel?
Jasper keeps hassling us...
DANIEL realizes that HONEY is referring to herself. He laughs self-consciously.
My mother never says yes. It's always no. No, no, no…
But your mother's dead. (A BEAT) Isn't she?
HONEY looks away; evasive.
Life is full of 'buts', ay? What ifs. In onlys...
Usually they’re just an excuse not to do something you want to do.
Or something you're scared to do.
What are you scared to do?
Too scared to tell you.
If you’d walked in my shoes... (you’d understand). What size are you? (A BEAT) Is there anything you're too scared to tell anyone? Even someone you love? (A BEAT) Especially someone you love?
You’re full of difficult questions aren’t you?
I’ll take that as a ‘yes’. What?
You don’t have to tell me, if you don’t want to.
Very kind of you, ‘someone’. (A BEAT) You want to tell me what you’re too scared to tell anyone.
You wouldn’t understand.
Maybe, maybe not, but you’ll only find out if you...
Take a leap?
Taking a leap without a safety net is pretty scary...for me.
You could be my safety net?
DANIEL stares at HONEY, at a loss for words.
Sorry, sorry, sorry. I’m....just a selfish bitch...always thinking about myself...
He reaches out to her. HONEY pulls back, a slightly crazed look in her eyes.
HONEY is silent for along moment, picking at a scab on one of the cut wounds on her arm.
She looks at her shoulder, panic in her eyes. She flicks at her shoulder.
HONEY stares at DANIEL, stares through him; in a zone.
Honey, what is it? What's wrong?
HONEY looks at her shoulder, panic in her eyes. She flicks at her shoulder, tries to brush her invisible tormentor away. She turns pale, sweats profusely; looks at
DANIEL as if she does not know who he is.
She looks at her hands as if she does know what they are. DANIEL takes her hand, holds it.
HONEY holds his hand tight - her whole body shaking now. DANIEL'S mobile rings. He ignores it; looks around, sees SIMMO, in shock, looking in through the window. He signals to SIMMO to get help.
What is it, Honey?
HONEY stares at him blankly, her eyes darting then to one shoulder and then the other.
109 INT. SHED. NIGHT
As seen from YOUNG HONEY’S bedroom:
CAROL pours the contents of the can of petrol over her head.
YOUNG HONEY runs into frame as CAROL takes out a box of matches, takes out a match and lifts her hand to light it.
YOUNG HONEY opens her mouth to scream.
From a perspective closeby:
The storage shed bursts into flames.
110 INT. GYMNASIUM. DAY
HONEY, her mouth open, panic and terror in her eyes - her face white and glistening with sweat. She mumbles to herself:
Selfish bitch, fuck you, leave me alone...
She stares at DANIEL, as if he was a stranger.
It’s me, Honey. Daniel.
He reaches out, takes her hand. HONEY looks at her hand in his, confused, then back up at DANIEL, trying to figure out who he is.
When she figures it out, she snuggles close to him, clinging to him as if her life depended on it.
A LITTLE LATER
Seen from behind, DANIEL sits on the floor with HONEY leaning up against him, her journal open in front of them.
HONEY (voice off)
...the Angel Gabriel on my right shoulder and...you’ve got to promise not to laugh.
DANIEL (voice off)
REBECCA stands in the doorway, a bottle of pills and a glass of water in her hands - watching, listening. On HONEY:
The Green Goblin on my left.
HONEY turns the page.
CLOSE on a full page drawing of The Green Goblin tied to a stake, being burnt to death by bright yellow and orange flames, his face contorted in pain.
DANIEL smiles, shakes his head.
Not to laugh, not not to smile!
111 INT. DINING ROOM. DAY
HELEN, lost in her memories as she looks through her photo albums, savours the violin concerto playing on the CD deck. The fingers on her left hand move deftly, as if playing an imaginary violin. The music reaches a crescendo. The beginning of a smile appears on her face.
112 INT. GYMNASIUM. DAY
DANIEL and HONEY sit facing each other now, neither of them aware of REBECCA standing in the doorway. Referring to the Green Goblin drawing:
He tells me to do...things.
What kind of things?
You wouldn’t understand.
Do you want someone to understand?
HONEY thinks for a moment, bites her lip; nods tentatively.
You could help me...understand.
I’m scared. (A BEAT)...that if you understand...
I want there to be at least one person who understands but...?
...what if they understand and don’t like...the person they’ve come to understand?
Better to stay hidden.
DANIEL smiles, raises his eyebrows questioningly. HONEY smiles shyly, is just about to say something when REBECCA appears in frame, pills and glass of water in hand.
Well, I can see I’m not needed.
Yes, you are Bec. I need you. To...to...
HONEY reaches out to REBECCA.
Fetch your cigarettes?
HONEY laughs, nods. REBECCA takes her hand.
It’s a pity Daniel’s already taken, Bec, coz he’s just the kind of boyfriend you need.
REBECCA laughs shyly, glances at DANIEL, whose mobile phone rings. He ignores it.
What... (happened)? are you...(OK)?
Nothing. (A BEAT) Just a panic attack.
REBECCA does not believe her. HONEY can see this.
REBECCA still does not believe her, but nods. DANIEL’S phone rings again. He ignores it.
You should to get back to your angels?
I'd better sign your contract, ay?
DANIEL holds up his hands: ‘No hurry’
HONEY holds out her hand. DANIEL looks at her for a moment.
Give it to me.
DANIEL takes the contract from his pocket, reluctantly. HONEY takes it from him.
DANIEL takes a pen from his pocket. HONEY takes it, unfolds the contract, signs it, hands it to REBECCA.
Now you know who I am. Honeysuckle Williams, but you can call me Honey.
HONEY hits REBECCA playfully, stands. She is awkward now - reserved; withdrawn. REBECCA hands the contract to DANIEL.
Take good care of your angels.
DANIEL nods, stands. HONEY wraps her arms around him, hugs DANIEL tight. DANIEL is unsure what to do with his own arms. By the time he tentatively places his arms around HONEY she breaks free, smiles, turns and runs out of the gymnasium.
DANIEL smiles, shakes his head, looks at REBECCA.
Welcome to the lion’s den, Daniel.
113 INT. ‘BACHELOR PAD’ DANIEL’S STUDIO. DAY
JASPER, in her school uniform, sleeps on a futon - her school backpack and book of illustrated bible stories at her side.
She wakes to the sound of music, turns towards colourful Indian cloth curtains, parts them and looks down into:
Daniel’s studio. DANIEL sits in front of his computer. TRACY is pottering around, tidying up after a photo shoot.
JASPER sits up, rubs the sleep from her eyes. This untidy ‘bachelor pad’, on an upraised platform in the corner of the studio, is clearly where Daniel sleeps when he works late into the night. It is sparsely furnished but photos, artefacts and a variety of cloth drapes from all around the world are suggestive of youthful world adventuring.
JASPER takes out her smart phone, positions herself to take a photo of the studio.
TRACY walks up to DANIEL.
114 INT. STUDIO. DAY
TRACY walks up to DANIEL, looks over his shoulder at the computer screen at the ‘happy family, whose daughter’s smile he is enhancing with Photoshop.
As happy as a pig in shit!
DANIEL smiles. JASPER, in the background, looks through the Indian cloth curtains; takes a photo with her iPhone.
You should go home.
Gotta get her looking...mmm, I think another 10% happier first.
DANIEL laughs. TRACY kisses him on the cheek; turns and walks off. Over her shoulder, a little flirtatiously:
All work and no play...
A LITTLE LATER
JASPER walks up behind DANIEL, puts her arms around him.
You right to go?
JASPER nods. DANIEL closes files.
Dad, can I ask you a question?
Do I have a choice?
No. When you were 20 did you think you were young or old?
When I was your age I thought 20 was old...ancient. Now 20 seems...very young.
If you could choose to stay at any one age forever, what would it be?
Don’t think just because I’m nine I wouldn’t understand.
You wouldn’t. And I would not want you to.
Now you have to tell me.
DANIEL swings his chair around, wraps his arms around JASPER’S waist. She wraps her arms around his neck.
When you’re nine you have no reason to believe that your dreams can’t come true.
And when you are an old fart like you?
When you are an old fart like me!? (A BEAT) Don’t be in too much of a rush to find out, sweetheart.
Typical adult answer.
DANIEL laughs. JASPER tilts her head to one side, raises her eyebrows questioningly.
JASPER smiles, kisses DANIEL, wraps her arms around his neck, hugs him tight.
115 INT. KITCHEN. NIGHT
HELEN smiles as she looks at the signed contract.
DANIEL looks far from happy. JASPER stands in the doorway.
She’s still stuck with John...
Yeah, and that’s sad but...
She’s not your problem?
Whose problem is she?
You keep out of this, Jas. You don't need to know about…
I know what John makes Honey do, mum.
HELEN looks at DANIEL, angry.
I'm not a baby!
Jesus, you’ve told....(Jasper)
I asked. And dad...what was he supposed to do? Lie? John’s like her step-dad and he makes her fuck men for money...
HELEN holds up her hands angrily.
That’s enough, Jasper...You will not use that language in my house.
Your house! (A BEAT) You say ‘fuck’ all the time.
I do not! (A BEAT) You’re 9 years old you don’t need to know... everything!
Like you, you mean!
HELEN looks to DANIEL for support. He gestures to JASPER to back off. JASPER nods, infuriates HELEN more.
Fuck, why are you two ganging up on me?
She just needs someone to bail her out and...well, we could...
Okay, I could bail her out.
And do what with her, Daniel?
Get her away from John, until...
She could stay in the granny flat…?
HELEN puts her hand up to exclude JASPER from the argument, turns on DANIEL - realizing that this is his idea.
Are you out of your fucking mind? In mum's flat!
Your mother's dead.
Don't say that!
HELEN covers her ears.
If she goes with John…
She's not my problem, Daniel. And she's not your problem. Stick to taking photos of them. 'The poor, the lonely, the dispossessed, the mad'.
JASPER'S eyes flit between HELEN, mad as hell, and DANIEL, frustratingly passive.
Stop trying to pretend that you actually give a shit. Honey's just a photo opportunity. That's it. There's lots of Honey's out there! Who are you trying to kid? Me? Yourself? Jasper? Hello!
DANIEL stares at HELEN for a long moment, turns and walks out the door.
HELEN regrets what she's just said. She looks at JASPER - who glares back at her angrily.
116 EXT. NIGHT. CITY STREET
DANIEL drives dangerously fast. He approaches an orange traffic light. It turns red. He drives straight through it. A motorist has to brake to avoid a collision.
117 EXT. PARKING LOT. STUDIO. NIGHT
DANIEL pulls up close to the front door of his studio, pulls his bike back onto its stand, lets himself in the front door.
118 INT. STUDIO. NIGHT
DANIEL sits at a large work desk, splashes straight Bourbon into a glass, gulps it down, looks at the mock-up of the happy family in the ad.
A LITTLE LATER
DANIEL, an unlit cigarette in his mouth, stands and walks towards the stairs at the rear of the studio that lead to:
119 INT. ‘BACHELOR PAD’ DANIEL’S STUDIO. DAY
DANIEL sits on the futon, the unlit cigarette jiggling up and down in his mouth. He looks at:
A framed photo of himself as a young man, smiling for the camera as he and his companions (and some similarly smiling Sherpas) ready themselves to climb Mt Everest - seen in the background.
120 EXT. DAWN. CLIFF FACE. DAWN
In the first light of dawn DANIEL pulls up, on his Harley, at the base of a sheer cliff face.
He unstraps the blue duffle bag on the back of the Harley, reaches inside, feels around for his climbing shoes, chalk. They are not there.
DANIEL moves to get back on his motor bike, stops, thinks for a moment, starts to take off his riding boots.
121 INT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE ROOM. DAWN
HONEY sits up in bed, drawing in her journal. Three other girls are still asleep in their bunks.
HONEY concentrates on her drawing. It is hard to make out at this point but one of the figures clearly has angle’s wings.
122 EXT. CLIFF FACE. SUNRISE
DANIEL, his face up against the cliff face releases one hand from a small edge of jutting rock, reaches up, his hand searching for something to grab hold of.
DANIEL is climbing solo in bare feet. His Harley can be seen at the base of the cliff - 30 feet below.
123 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. DAY
HELEN hums Vivaldi's “Four Seasons” to herself as she finishes making the bed, walks to a storage closet, opens the door, takes out the photo that fell to the floor, the glass shattered. She carries it to the bed, rests it there, sits beside it, looks at it:
Nine year old Helen, a violin and bow in one hand, looking with a happy smile up at her mother.
HELEN basks in her memories for a moment, walks back to the wardrobe. As she lifts a battered old red suitcase from a shelf, her attention is caught by a plastic bag hidden behind the red suitcase.
She places the suitcase on the ground, takes the plastic bag from the shelf, opens it, reacts with anger.
124 EXT. CLIFF FACE. DAY
DANIEL’S bare toes search for a cleft in the rock face. They search in vain.
His sweating face up against the rock face, DANIEL’S concentration is intense as he struggles to find a foothold.
HONEY (voice off, reading)
“Saint Gabriel, Archangel, I venerate you because God specially appointed you to bear messages concerning the God-Man, Jesus, to Daniel, Zechariah, and the Blessed Virgin Mary...”
125 EXT. TOP OF CLIFF. DAY
DANIEL struggles over the edge at the top of the cliff, sits with his legs dangling over them.
HONEY (voice off, reading)
“I venerate you, Saint Gabriel, as the giver of God's strength...
DANIEL looks out over the vast landscape spread before him.
HONEY (voice off, reading)
“...consoler and comforter chosen to strengthen God's faithful and teach them important truths.”
At peace, DANIEL looks up at the bird circling above on an updraft, then down at his scarred arms.
126 INT. DETENTION CENTRE RECREATION YARD. DAY
CLOSE ON HONEY, reading from her journal:
“Steady my resolutions; renew my courage; comfort and console me...”
DANIEL sits closeby, listening; his eyes on HONEY.
“...in the problems, trials and sufferings of daily living, as you consoled our Savior in his agony and Mary in her sorrows.”
She finishes, turns her journal around to show DANIEL the drawing she has done to accompany the text:
The Archangel Gabriel, replete with wings, leaning close to a man whose face looks remarkably like Daniel’s.
You chatting with Gabriel, my favourite angel.
And what is Gabriel saying to Daniel?
He’s telling you that you absolutely must come and visit me again. And here you are!
DANIEL smiles, looks down at Honey’s journal - the Archangel and Daniel drawing surrounded by drawings and photos.
He asks HONEY with his eyes if he can flick through the pages. She nods.
As he flicks back through the diary, three themes dominate - fire, angels and octpuses. He looks at HONEY quizzically. HONEY smiles, says nothing.
DANIEL turns another page to reveal:
Honey’s drawing of the comic book Green Goblin, a knife in the heart, with blood dripping down his chest.
DANIEL looks at the drawing, then at HONEY. Distracted, ill at ease, she turns to another page:
A drawing of a smiling octopus.
Do you think I’m mad?
DANIEL shakes his head, smiles.
A little unusual, perhaps.
HONEY laughs for a moment, then becomes serious; reflective.
I just want to be normal. (A BEAT) but I don’t know how.
DANIEL smiles, shakes his head.
127 EXT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE. DAY
DANIEL stands at the front entrance with REBECCA.
This is not a good place for her to be.
Where is a good place?
For a girl with her problems? There is no place. (A BEAT) I know you gave her that money for bail, but...where is she going to go? (A BEAT) With John?
Shit! (A BEAT) If there is anything I can do, please...
HONEY (voice off)
DANIEL and REBECCA turn to see HONEY struggling with TWO YOUTH WORKERS in the entrance.
I'm not going to run off!
REBECCA nods to the YOUTH WORKERS. They release their grip on HONEY. She walks up to DANIEL, clutching a small parcel wrapped in newspaper.
It's a present. For you.
She holds the parcel out to DANIEL. He holds his hands up, shakes his head. A blue car pulls up in the parking lot.
HONEY lowers the parcel, thinks a moment then suddenly throws it to DANIEL. He catches it reflexively; laughs. HONEY smiles, spins on her heels, walks back toward the entrance. DANIEL calls out to her:
I'll accept it on one condition.
From JOHN'S POV sitting in the blue Holden:
HONEY spins around.
What's your condition, Mr Photographer?
No more chairs through windows. OK?
HONEY smiles, nods.
The smile disappears from HONEY'S face as she sees JOHN get out of the blue car.
DANIEL follows her stare, sees JOHN.
Tell the police what he's been doing to you? They can charge him.
He's all I've got.
128 INT. KITCHEN. DAY
DANIEL sits with JASPER at the kitchen table, Honey's parcel in front of them.
HELEN prepares dinner. DANIEL tears off the newspaper to reveal Honey's journal, smiles, shakes his head.
What is it?
Why would she… (give you her journal)?
DANIEL shrugs (“God knows!”), opens the parcel. CLOSE ON:
A double page filled with a collage: three photos of Honey, in each of which she has different coloured and styled hair, a photo of a giant squid, a caricature of a smiling octopus, poems enclosed in hand drawn multi-coloured boxes.
JASPER looks on entranced. HELEN places her hands on JASPER'S shoulders, looks on. DANIEL turns the page. Another collage:
A panel cut from a comic: Spiderman doing battle with the 'Green Goblin' dominates. There is also a photo of a raging bush fire, a trio of hand drawn angels, a pressed flower, the photo with the burnt edges - which we recognize as young Honey (aged 9) and her mother, the post card photo of a green fern seedling curling up from barren bushfire-burnt soil.
HELEN is not pleased with JASPER'S excitement as they flip through more pages. Fire, octopuses and photos of Honey (in each which she looks very different) are recurring themes.
JASPER stops the turning of pages to look at:
A strip of three photo-booth photos of a happy mother, father and young daughter. It is stuck into the journal at one edge only. JASPER points to the young girl in the photo.
Is that Honey?
I don’t think so.
HELEN flips it over. There is writing on the other side of it. HELEN pays little attention to it.
She's not 'awesome', Jas, she's (A BEAT) a fruitloop!
Don't tell me 'don't', Daniel…Hello! She hears angels singing! She's…
I do feel sorry for her, Jas, but…(to Daniel) she’s got a thing about octopuses, death, knives…and its obvious she's trying to manipulate…
DANIEL holds his hand up. He does not want to have this conversation.
JASPER turns another page, sees an envelope alongside a drawing of Joan of Arc. JASPER reads what is written on it.
'I don't want to be a charity case.'
As JASPER holds the envelope out to DANIEL, HELEN picks up Honey's journal. DANIEL opens the envelope, looks inside, shakes his head; sighs. HELEN looks at the journal. CLOSE ON:
Joan of Arc burning at the stake - the page filled with red, yellow and orange texta flames.
The phone rings. JASPER picks up the hands-free receiver.
Hello, this is Jasper speaking.
Hi Jasper, this is Honey speaking.
JASPER'S eyes light up. HELEN reaches for the phone.
Do you know who I am?
JASPER holds her hand up, does not give HELEN the phone.
129 INT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE. NIGHT
HONEY, smiling radiantly, stands in a phone booth close to an office where YOUTH WORKERS sit watching TV.
Yes, We're looking at your journal - me, mum'n dad. It is awesome!
130 JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE / INT. KITCHEN NIGHT
DANIEL gestures to JASPER to give him the phone. As she does so she presses a button to put it in speaker mode - ignoring HELEN'S 'no' gesture. Intercut between two locations.
Honey, I don't know what to say. (A BEAT) Your journal!
You don't have to say anything.
HELEN takes $100 bills out of the envelope, looks at DANIEL
I'll bring it back…but the money was for you to bail yourself out?
I’m going to stay here.
Hey, three meals a day...
Hi, Honey. I'm Helen. Daniel might have told you…
Hi, Helen. Angel number one.
Angel number one!?
Daniel told me he had two angels.
HELEN smiles, looks to DANIEL (covering his face in mock embarrassment) and then to JASPER - who is beaming.
One he fell in love with on the phone from her voice…
JASPER looks at her parents with a mixture of surprise and delight. HELEN frowns at DANIEL playfully.
I didn't really intend that to be broadcast to the world, Honey.
So I can't put it on the internet?
JASPER is loving this, her eyes flicking between her mother and father as she learns some family secrets.
And what about the second angel?
He met her nine months later.
Nine months! (A BEAT) I was an accident!
Is there anything you and Daniel didn't talk about, Honey?
(A BEAT) JASPER'S eyes flit between her mother and father.
You do have a beautiful voice, Helen.
Thank you, Honey.
You can tell so much from someone's voice.
What can you tell? From mum's voice?
HELEN frowns at JASPER, shakes her head. HONEY bites her lip.
I can't tell you on the telephone.(A BEAT) But if you and Jasper come and visit me?
HELEN shakes her head, makes a 'no' gesture. DANIEL holds his hands out: “Why?” HELEN holds her hands up: “I don't want to talk about it!” This all happens in a second or two. HONEY 'reads' the silence correctly, comes to their rescue.
Hey angel number two, if olive oil is made from olives what is baby oil made from?
And how come boxing rings are square?
HONEY plays nervously with the telephone cord. JASPER looks at a photo of an octopus in Honey's journal.
I figured out the octopus, Honey.
JASPER smiles, nods. DANIEL and HELEN exchange bemused looks.
131 INT. JASPER’S BEDROOM. NIGHT
JASPER lies in her bed in the dark listening to the muffled argument between her mum and dad - the words barely audible.
It’s not that I don’t care...it’s just...it’s everything...we have our own...I’ve had enough...
132 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN’S BEDROOM. NIGHT
HELEN stands, hands on hips, in the middle of the room.
Of what? (A BEAT) OK, what is it?
HELEN strides to the storage closet takes the plastic bag from behind the red suitcase, dumps its contents on the bed: Daniel's climbing shoes and bag of climbing chalk.
You told us you'd stopped.
I don't want you to worry. Or Jas.
I was not totally forthcoming with the truth!
How can you joke about this?
How can you take it so seriously?
Have you seen what Jasper’s been reading? The bible!
About death and...hell..and...she’s become obsessed with death…
Interested. It is an interesting topic...
Not the way she is...
That's why I...
Lied. (A BEAT) You want to kill yourself and break her heart?
133 INT. ACTIVITIES ROOM. NIGHT
HONEY is playing pool with SIMMO. As she lines up a shot.
Simmo, make me a durri.
SIMMO nods, takes out his roll-your-own, starts to make a cigarette as a YOUTH WORKER enters and calls out to HONEY.
134 INT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE. NIGHT
HONEY rushes into the booth, picks up the phone excitedly.
135 INT. CHEAP BOARDING HOUSE ROOM. NIGHT
JOHN sits on the edge of the bed, long neck beer in one hand, mobile phone in the other.
Don't hang up. Your mother's dead.
136 INT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE. NIGHT
HONEY is in shock, her face white.
137 INT. SHED. NIGHT
HONEY’S MOTHER, her hair and upper body wet with petrol, lights a match.
138 INT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE. NIGHT
HONEY opens her mouth but no words come.
I'm the only one loves you. Remember that. You tell 'em anything and I'll fucken kill ya. (A BEAT) You hear what I just said Catherine? You've only got me now to take care of you…
HONEY drops the phone, stares with unseeing eyes at the YOUTH WORKERS in the adjacent room. They are watching TV and paying no attention to HONEY. She looks at the telephone on the ground for a long moment, as if trying to figure out what it is. She remembers, leans down, picks it up.
The phone is dead. HONEY dials a number, gets a long monotonous tone, hangs up, tries again, gets the tone, flings open the door, shouts at the YOUTH WORKERS.
The fucking phone's not working!
It's for incoming calls only, Honey.
I have to make a call.
Not at this hour, sweetheart.
The YOUTH WORKER doesn't take her eyes from the television.
I have to make a call now.
In the morning.
HONEY picks up a chair and throws it through the window.
139 EXT. JUVENILE DETENTION CENTRE. NIGHT
TWO POLICEMEN and YOUTH WORKERS wrestle with HONEY as they force her into the back of a Paddy Wagon.
I want to call my mother.
140 INT. PADDY WAGON. NIGHT
HONEY, sitting in the back of the paddy wagon, reaches into her pocket, takes out a sliver of glass.
141 EXT. WOMEN'S PRISON. NIGHT
The Paddy Wagon stops outside Reception.
The TWO POLICEMEN open the back of the Paddy Wagon, see:
HONEY, staring at them, her arms hanging limply beside her, both dripping blood.
142 DANIEL'S STUDIO. NIGHT
Music over DANIEL, an unlit cigarette in his mouth, a bottle of Bourbon and a near empty glass at his side, looking at:
A 10 x 8 photo of Honey, in the clutches of the police, her arms held out towards him: a plea for help.
He refills his glass, uses the ‘remote’ to turn up the music.
143 INT. PRISON INFIRMARY. NIGHT
HONEY, arms bandaged, telephone receiver in her hands, face wet with tears, waits as the phone rings. And rings. The phone is answered. Honey's mother’s grumpy voice is heard.
Mum? (A BEAT) Is that you?
What do you want?
Why are you doing calling me!? I can’t speak to the devil.
John said… Mum…I love you…I want…
I don't love you. You are a wicked bitch…The Wicked Bitch from the West.
Don’t tell me. Tell Jesus. Tell him everything. He'll listen. Or you can tell the Pope too but its better if you tell Jesus. I've got to go now. I'm very busy.
I love you.
Honey's mother hangs up. HONEY is relieved that her mother is alive. She dials another number.
144 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
HELEN is asleep in her bed. The phone rings. HELEN wakes, answers it, sits bolt upright.
145 INT. PRISON INFIRMARY. NIGHT
A NURSE walks in carrying a glass of water and a small plastic container of pills.
Helen, please help me…
The NURSE wags her finger ('Naughty girl'), reaches out to take the receiver from HONEY'S hand.
146 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
HELEN swings her legs out of the bed.
Honey, where are you?
The phone goes dead.
147 INT. PRISON RECEPTION AREA. NIGHT
HONEY stands in front of TWO FEMALE PRISON GUARDS.
As she starts to undress, HONEY turns her back on the TWO PRISON GUARDS, slips something into her mouth.
HONEY stands in front of the guards in her bra and knickers.
Take them off.
HONEY panics, shakes her head.
HONEY removes her bra and knickers.
148 INT. DANIEL'S STUDIO. NIGHT
DANIEL sits in the dark, sipping on his bourbon - the photos of Honey spread out in front of him. The music is loud. A door opens. HELEN and JASPER (in her pajamas) walk in.
149 INT. PRISON CELL. NIGHT
HONEY, in a white prison uniform, clutching a packet of roll-your-own tobacco and a booklet of matches, stands at the door leading into her sparse prison cell. The door clangs shut. HONEY takes the sliver of glass from under her tongue, slashes at the cotton cover of the foam rubber mattress.
Honey has built a small pyramid of cotton and rubber on the floor. She strikes a match, sets it alight. Within seconds the small fire begins to emit clouds of dark noxious smoke. HONEY stares at the fire, mesmerized.
150 INT. SHED. NIGHT
YOUNG HONEY’S POV: Her MOTHER, hair and upper body wet with petrol, a lit match in her hand, turns to look at YOUNG HONEY - madness in her eyes.
151 INT. PRISON CELL. NIGHT
Two PRISON GUARDS with fire extinguishers open the cell door and see, through the clouds of smoke:
HONEY, in bra and knickers, sitting on the edge of her trashed bed - legs and chest bleeding, coughing and as the fire smolders in front of her. The Guards turn their fire extinguishers on both the fire and on HONEY and her bed.
HONEY, in her wet bra and knickers, her hair wet, sits on the floor, her back up against the wall, her knees tucked up to her chest. She is crying.
HONEY brushes the tears from her eyes dismissively.
152 EXT. ROCKS. LATE AFTERNOON
HELEN, a nervous wreck, sits on a rock by the ocean, trying to control her breathing. She has a paper bag in her hand.
153 INT. DINING ROOM. NIGHT
DANIEL, HONEY, HELEN and JASPER have finished their main course. A bowl of crepe mix sits by the chafing dish - along with a bottle of Brandy and several bottles of liqueurs.
HONEY holds up her mobile phone, takes ‘selfies’ of herself and JASPER pulling funny faces.
DANIEL is happy to see HONEY and JASPER together. HELEN, in good spirits, unscrews the cap of a bottle of Brandy.
Either of you clowns want a crepe?
JASPER turns to HONEY, excited
Mum is famous for her crepes.
And Jasper is famous for exaggerating!
HELEN gestures to the array of liqueurs.
JASPER reads the labels of the bottles.
Brandy, Curacao, Cointreau, Grand Marnier...?
JASPER picks up the bottle of Grand Marnier, grins.
Mmmmm....I think Grand Marnier would be grand.
HONEY lifts her iPhone to take a photo. JASPER hams it up, pretending to be a drunk, drinking from the bottle.
HELEN takes the bottle from JASPER, unscrews the cap, pours Grand Marnier into a jug. HONEY points her iPhone at HELEN.
HELEN looks at HONEY. She takes a photo.
And one of you and Jasper.
JASPER links her arm in HELEN’S, leans up against her, makes a V sign and a funny face. HELEN smiles. HONEY takes a photo.
And one of me and Helen.
HONEY hands the iPhone to JASPER, stands alongside HELEN, leans up against her, makes a V sign, smiles.
CLOSE ON THE flambé pan - in which a close-to-perfectly round crepe, with a small cleft in it, is enveloped in blue flames.
HELEN flips the crepe onto a plate, hands it to DANIEL.
No its not!
What's wrong with it?
DANIEL and JASPER exchange smiles.
Ideally, the perfect crepe...
DANIEL cuts a piece of crepe, skewers it with a fork.
...should be...perfectly symmetrical.
HONEY grabs the fork from DANIEL, puts it in her mouth.
Mmmm! Tastes symmetrical to me. Very symmetrical. In fact it's the most perfectly symmetrical crepe I've ever tasted.
A LITTLE LATER
HONEY sits on a white leather couch, a plate with crepe on it resting in her lap.
JASPER sits beside her, an empty plate on her lap. A violin concerto playing on the sound system plays as HONEY runs one hand over the soft white upholstery.
How do they get leather so soft?
By making it out of plastic.
It feels like...real!
HONEY’s mood undergoes a sudden change. She glances at her shoulder, plays nervously with the crepe on her plate.
If something feels real does that make it real?
There is a long moment of silence as DANIEL, HELEN and JASPER try to ‘read’ HONEY’S sudden mood swing.
I guess you know I’m kind of crazy.
What kind of crazy?
HELEN gestures 'no' to JASPER. DANIEL gestures 'It's OK.' HONEY, unsure, takes her cue from DANIEL.
Bi-polar, schizo, personality disorder, disassociative disorder… you name it, I've got it - depending on which shrink you talk to.
HONEY registers HELEN'S unease.
But I'm not dangerous, Helen. Except to myself.
HONEY indicates her bandaged arms.
How are you dangerous...(to yourself?)
You know when you are on a roller coaster and scared...
...but you don’t die and when the roller coaster stops you feel...so alive. So, so alive you just want to sing?
HONEY turns to DANIEL.
Like you and climbing cliffs. You could die like that...
HONEY, animated, on a roll, clicks her fingers.
But then you get to the top and you’re more alive than...
HONEY registers the look of horror on HELEN’S face, the panic in DANIEL’S and JASPER’S eyes flitting back and forth between her parents, intrigued by their reactions.
My life is a roller-coaster.
HONEY ‘reads’ HELEN accurately, leaps to her feet, scans the photos on the wall. Most of them include Helen - as a young woman in her late teens and as a young mother.
You were so beautiful when you were young, Helen. (A BEAT) But even more beautiful now. Now that you're…
What am I now?
Beautiful inside too.
Granted! You have two more wishes!
HELEN laughs. JASPER, excitedly to HONEY:
If you had just one wish, one wish in the whole wide world, what would it be?
To have a sister just like you.
Yes, yes, yes…
JASPER'S glee at the prospect is cut short when she sees the frozen smile on HELEN'S face.
So tell us about the octopus?
JASPER and HONEY exchange glances, laugh; shake their heads.
You have your secrets, we have ours.
DANIEL and HELEN exchange glances.
Anyone for another crepe?
Can I make one?
A LITTLE LATER
HELEN picks up a box of long-stemmed matches, takes out a match, looks at it.
CLOSE ON: The red head of the match bursting into flame.
CLOSE ON HONEY, staring at the match. All natural sounds drain away.
CLOSE ON the alcohol in the flambe dish, being lit with the long-stemmed match. A light blue flame appears.
HONEY stares at the flame, picks up the brandy bottle and splashes a large slug of it into the flambe dish as HELEN returns from the kitchen.
An explosion of flame leaps into the air. Brandy on the table cloth catches fire.
DANIEL covers the burning table cloth with a napkin, puts the small fire out easily.
HONEY (in shock)
HONEY looks to HELEN. She hides her panic, her distress.
Nothing, Honey...Don’t worry about it. (A BEAT) Brandy in jug first, OK? Then pour carefully into pan.
JASPER looks at HONEY'S scarred arms, opens her mouth as if to ask a question; stops as she sees HELEN shake her head.
DANIEL notices this interchange. His eyes meet HELEN'S for a moment: “Relax, it's OK.”
154 INT/EXT. GRANNY FLAT. NIGHT
HONEY sits on the bed, happy, as HELEN takes a clean neatly folded towel from a cupboard and hands it to HONEY. Evidence of Helen's mother's residency have mostly been removed.
HELEN smiles, holds up her hands: “It's nothing.”
DANIEL and JASPER, both smiling, stand in the doorway.
HELEN'S attention is drawn to something that has fallen to the floor beside the bed. She picks it up, looks at it: a GET WELL SOON card.
HELEN'S face darkens with sadness.
Don't be too sad, Helen, your mother is in heaven.(A BEAT) Singing with the angels.
HELEN bites her lip, wipes the moisture from her eyes.
You lost your mum, too, didn’t you?
When I was seven.
Oh, Honey, I am so sorry.
HELEN hugs HONEY.
HONEY is sprawled on the bed, writing a poem in her journal. Light flashes in her eyes. She looks up:
JASPER, leans out of the window of her upstairs bedroom, flashlight in hand - its beam hitting HONEY in the face. She beckons HONEY with her hand: “Come”.
HONEY shakes her head.
JASPER nods her head.
HONEY laughs, shakes her head. JASPER nods in a very exaggerated manner, points her finger: “This is an order, not a request.”
155 INT JASPER'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
HONEY walks into the room. JASPER sits in bed reading a book. She raises a finger to her lips: “Shhhh…”. HONEY smiles, tiptoes melodramatically over to JASPER'S bed. JASPER tries not to laugh out loud, which causes HONEY to laugh also.
156 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
HELEN and DANIEL lie alongside each other in bed.
It’s not nothing. Mum gave me that table cloth...
It’s a piece of linen, Helen...
To you, maybe...I’m worried that Jasper...I mean, look at Honey’s arms!
Is worrying going to help.
Is burying your head in the sand?
She has to find out about the real world sooner or later.
Honey is not the real world.
DANIEL gestures 'all this' with his free arm.
Yes. Yes. Yes. I love all 'this' (A BEAT) Don't you?
I don't know. I really don't. I wish I did but…!
DANIEL and HELEN stare at each other.
JASPER (voice over)
Angrily, King Nebuchadnezzar ordered that the furnace be made seven times hotter than usual…
157 INT. JASPER'S ROOM. NIGHT
HONEY lies alongside JASPER in bed - their two heads close. JASPER has her illustrated bible book propped up on her chest. HONEY listens with fascination as JASPER reads.
…and that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego be tied up and thrown in.
CLOSE ON a coloured illustration of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego being thrown into the fiery furnace.
JASPER (voice over)
The flames were so hot…
CLOSE on HONEY - totally absorbed by the story.
158 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
DANIEL and HELEN lie in bed looking at each other.
JASPER (voice over)
…that the soldiers who threw them in were killed on the spot.
DANIEL turns his head away.
JASPER (voice over)
But when King Nebuchadnezzar looked in…
HELEN reaches out with her hand, turns DANIEL'S face back to her, looks him in the eye.
JASPER (voice over)
…he saw Shadrach
DANIEL kisses HELEN lightly on the lips.
JASPER (voice over)
…Meshach, and Abednego…
HELEN grabs DANIEL'S head, tries to kiss him passionately. He avoids her lips as he holds her tight.
159 INT. JASPER'S ROOM. NIGHT
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego walking around inside the fiery furnace.
JASPER (voice over)
…walking around unbound and unharmed…
HONEY is hypnotized by the images of flames.
160 DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
DANIEL and HELEN make love with an intense but awkward animal passion. HELEN tries to kiss DANIEL but he avoids her lips.
161 INT. JASPER'S ROOM. NIGHT
SLOW ZOOM past Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego to the shadowy figure in their midst.
JASPER (voice over)
…There was a fourth man in the fiery furnace whom King Nebuchadnezzar said…
CLOSE ON: HONEY'S face.
JASPER (voice over)
…looked like the Son of God…
162 INT. SHED. YOUNG HONEY'S HOME. NIGHT
CAROL, seen through the window of backyard shed, pours liquid from the small can over her head, picks up a pack of matches, looks at it for a moment, takes out a match.
YOUNG HONEY, seen through the window of her bedroom, looks on in horror.
JASPER (voice over)
163 INT. JASPER'S ROOM. NIGHT
CLOSE ON the shadowy figure in the midst of the flames.
JASPER (voice over)
HONEY pulls her attention away from the flames.
Do I what?
Believe in God.
I don't think he believes in me.
I believe in you.
HONEY smiles, turns to look into JASPER'S eyes.
JASPER smiles, nods. HONEY is overjoyed.
164 INT. DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
DANIEL and HELEN, both glistening with sweat, lie naked in each other's arms but both stare into space - lost in their separate private reveries.
165 EXT/INT GRANNY FLAT. NIGHT/DAY
HONEY creeps in through the door to the granny flat, closes the door behind her.
HONEY sits up in bed writing in her journal.
It is morning now. HONEY is asleep, her open journal resting on the bed beside her.
JASPER, dressed for school, stands in the open doorway looking at her.
166 INT. KITCHEN. DAY
DANIEL pours coffee into a mug, looks out the window at: HELEN watching JASPER looking through the doorway to the granny flat at HONEY.
167 EXT/INT GRANNY FLAT. NIGHT
HONEY lies in bed, eyes open. The sound of a motor bike being kick started is heard.
HONEY swings her legs out of bed, grabs her journal, picks up a vial of pills beside the bed.
168 EXT. STREET OUTSIDE DANIEL AND HELEN'S HOUSE. DAY
DANIEL drives away from his home on his motor bike, overtakes Helen's car - with HELEN and JASPER in it. He waves to JASPER as he passes. JASPER waves back.
169 INT. DINING ROOM. DAY
HONEY, a glass of water in hand, inspects the cover of the CD resting on top of the music system: Mendelssohn's Violin Concertos. She presses 'play'.
The violin concerto plays as HONEY tosses two pills in her hand into her mouth, washes them down with a sip of water, walks and stands before a wall covered with photos - most of which include Helen at various ages. In all of them she appears beautiful and in many, smiles enigmatically.
170 INT. CAR. DAY
The music continues over JASPER, school backpack in her lap, determined not to answer HELEN'S questions as she drives.
Because they have 8 arms?
JASPER shakes her head.
Because…they don't have a skeleton?
JASPER shakes her head.
171 INT. DINING ROOM. DAY
Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto continues over HONEY, seen through the aquarium filled with exotic tropical fish, moving to sit on the white leather couch. She picks up one of Helen's photo albums, opens it, turns pages slowly.
172 INT. CAR. DAY
Music continues over. Helen drives JASPER to school.
It's a secret.
You don't have to keep secrets from me.
I know I don't have to.
173 INT. CAR/EXT OLD FACTORY PARKING LOT. DAY
Music continues over DANIEL driving his motor bike into the parking lot adjacent to his studio - seen from the inside of a car, over the shoulder of a woman.
174 INT. DINING ROOM. DAY
Music continues over HONEY turning the last pages of one of Helen's photo albums, closing it, picking up another.
175 INT. CAR OUTSIDE SCHOOL. DAY
Music continues over. JASPER is about to get out of the car to join other students walking into school.
You can be an infuriating little girl, sometimes.
You can be an infuriating big girl sometimes.
JASPER kisses HELEN quickly on the cheek and is out of the car in a flash.
176 EXT. OLD FACTORY PARKING LOT. DAY
Music continues over. DANIEL acknowledges the woman in the car with a wave, looks back towards the entrance of the old factory then walks up to the car to greet its driver.
TRACY stands behind the glass entrance door to the factory, looking out, watching the car drive out of the parking lot.
177 INT. DINING ROOM. DAY
Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto continues over HONEY looking closely at one particular photo in Helen's album. We do not see it. She thinks for a moment, picks up another photo album, flicks through it until she finds a particular photo. She looks at it for a moment:
A girl that looks like Jasper smiling at the camera, a violin tucked into her neck, bow in her right hand, a small kid's orchestra behind her.
HONEY thinks for a moment, stands and walks out of the room.
178 DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. DAY
Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto continues over HONEY walking into the room, looking around.
179 INT. CAR. DAY
Music continues over DANIEL sitting in the passenger seat alongside JASMIN, driving. He does not look happy. JASMIN holds out her hand. DANIEL takes it, tries to smile.
180 INT. HELEN'S CAR. DAY
Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto continues over HELEN driving into the street where she, Daniel and Jasper live.
181 DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. DAY
Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto continues over HONEY opening and closing drawers, cupboard doors - looking for something.
182 INT. KITCHEN. DAY
Music continues over as HELEN walks into the kitchen. She sees Honey’s journal resting on the table, moves towards it, as if to pick it up. She changes her mind and walks into the adjacent dining room.
183 INT. DINING ROOM. DAY
Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto continues over. Helen sees her open photo albums, walks to the white leather couch, closes them, replaces them in the pile of albums, making sure that the pile is neat, tidy. Symmetrical!
HELEN (calls out)
184 DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. DAY
Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto continues over HONEY opening the door to Helen's walk-in closet. The battered old red suitcase is in view. Honey walks towards it.
185 INT/EXT GRANNY FLAT. DAY
Music continues over HELEN walking towards the door to the granny flat.
HELEN (calls out)
On seeing no sign of Honey in the flat, HELEN takes out her mobile phone, enters a number.
186 EXT. FLORIST. DAY
Music continues over DANIEL carrying a large bunch of red roses. His mobile rings. He takes it out, looks at the screen, decides not to take the call, walks up to the passenger door of JASMIN'S car.
The Violin Concerto finishes.
187 DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. DAY
HONEY closes the red suitcase, picks up the photo of Daniel, Helen and Jasper with the broken glass. She seems not to hear the sound of the back door opening and closing.
188 INT. HALLWAY. DAY
HELEN moves to walk upstairs but stops - her attention caught by Honey's journal resting on the kitchen table. She thinks for a moment, makes decision.
189 INT. KITCHEN. DAY
HELEN walks into the kitchen, picks up the vial of pills alongside Honey's journal, reads the label.
190 DANIEL AND HELEN'S BEDROOM. DAY
HONEY looks at the photo of Daniel, Helen and Jasper. Her attention is caught by the sound of a chair scraping on the floor downstairs.
191 INT. KITCHEN. DAY
HELEN sits, pulls Honey's journal towards her, opens it.
192 INT. STAIRWAY/HALL. DAY
HONEY stands at the top of the stairs, alongside an antique velvet covered arm chair. She then creeps down the stairs slowly, quietly. At a point where she can see into the kitchen she stops. She can see HELEN'S back as she leans over looking at the journal.
HONEY watches her for a long moment. HELEN turns a page. HONEY creeps to the back door, opens it quietly, walks out, closes the door gently behind her.
193 EXT. BACK YARD. DAY
HONEY climbs over the fence into the neighbor's back yard, drops into a flowery garden.
194 INT. KITCHEN. DAY
HELEN turns another page of Honey's journal. The sound of the front door bell.
HELEN closes the journal, returns it to the position she found it in, walks out.
195 EXT/INT. FRONT DOOR. DAY
HELEN opens the front door to find HONEY standing there, smiling, a big bunch of flowers in her hand.
Went for a walk.
HONEY hands the bunch of flowers to HELEN.
Thank you Honey.
196 INT. KITCHEN. DAY
HONEY and HELEN sit at the kitchen table drinking coffee. HELEN holds Honey's vial of pills, looks at HONEY.
I get bad headaches. (A BEAT) I was looking at your photo albums before. And…
That's OK. That's what they're for - to be looked at.
You can look at my journal if you want.
HELEN nods, thinks for a moment.
I was looking at it before you arrived with…
HELEN points at the flowers in the vase on the table.
I hope you don't mind!
HONEY laughs, shakes her head.
Find anything interesting?
HELEN pulls the journal towards her, opens it, flicks through a few pages to the one that has the strip of photos of the mum, dad and smiling daughter seen earlier.
That's not you is it?
HONEY shakes her head.
Who… (are they)?
I don't know. I just found it, and…
HELEN nods, flips it over. On the other side is written:
MUM AND ME AND OUR HONEY BEE
“Mum and me and our Honey Bee?”
HELEN looks at HONEY quizzically. HONEY looks away.
Why have you stuck it in your journal?
HELEN nods, flips the page, looks at the burnt photo of Honey and her mother.
Is this you and your real mum?
HONEY nods nervously.
Do you mind if I ask you how your mother died?
I don’t want to talk about it.
I want to and I don’t, know what I mean?
You're one big question mark aren't you?
If you were a shrink, your next question would be, “Why do you think that is, Honey?”
“Why do you think that is, Honey?”
You heard the joke about insanity is hereditary?
HELEN shakes her head.
You get it from your kids?
HONEY flicks through her journal to the photo of herself and her mother on the roller coaster.
You look very happy together.
HONEY smiles, nods, disappears inside herself. HELEN watches her intently.
HONEY seems to have forgotten HELEN is there.
HELEN watches her for a long moment, then waves her hand to catch HONEY’S attention. HONEY snaps out of her reverie.
My life is a roller coaster too, Honey. (A BEAT) Different roller coaster but same ride.
You ever feel…kind of empty? As if there is something missing?
HONEY puts her hand on her heart.
Like you want to be filled up with…!
I don't know, but…(A BEAT) I want to be filled up with it!
What is it? That missing 'something'?
Was hoping you'd be able to tell me, eh!
HELEN laughs, shrugs, holds up her hands: “Beats me!”
But you've got Daniel, Jasper…
Yes, and I love them both to death but…
But, ever since I was a girl I've had this nagging feeling that…that there is…
HELEN can't find the word.
Something to make your soul sing?
Yes. Something to make your soul sing. Where did you hear that? It's perfect.
It's from one of my poems…
HONEY smiles, nods, flips through pages as she recites.
“Something to make my soul sing; With love for nearly everything; Except for roaches, ants and flies; And biting insects in the skies.”
HONEY arrives at the hand-written poem, surrounded by caricature drawings of roaches, ants and flies.
Yes, a world without roaches…and things that sting…
I miss my mum too. Heaps.
HELEN'S eyes fill with tears. HONEY takes her hand, entwines her fingers with HELEN'S. Tears stream down HELEN'S cheeks.
197 INT. DANIEL'S STUDIO 'LOFT'. LATE AFTERNOON
Seen through the 'curtains' in Daniel's loft:
JASMIN moves to music in the studio below - Tim Buckley's 'Sweet Surrender' as DANIEL, sits at his computer, touching up the photo of Jasmin from his exhibition with 'Photoshop'. JASMIN turns the music up louder, smiles at DANIEL.
CLOSE UP ON JASPER, looking down, her eyes wide. Her POV:
JASMIN sits beside DANIEL, leans close, talks animatedly. What she says cannot be heard above the music.
TIM BUCKLEY (sings)
“Just too hard, just too hard to surrender to love.
JASMIN looks into DANIEL'S eyes then kisses him on the lips.
In a wider shot it becomes apparent that JASPER, dressed in her school uniform, has long hair. This is a flashback.
JASPER observes the scene unfolding below her for a moment before returning to the futon, lying down on it and staring at the ceiling.
JASPER (voice off)
…so I had to pretend that I wasn't there and then dad asked me why I didn't come around after school like I said I would…
198 JASPER'S BEDROOM. NIGHT
JASPER (short hair, the flashback has finished) and HONEY sit propped up in bed together - Jasper's illustrated bible stories book open in front of them.
…and I had to tell him I was at Claire's… Claire's my best friend…was my best friend…but mum spoke to Clair's mum and she said I hadn't been there and…oh, lying is so difficult!
Sometimes its best not to tell the truth.
But you get into so much trouble too, lying. Life is really very complicated, isn't it?
HONEY laughs, hugs JASPER.
Is kissing someone the same as having sex with them?
HONEY shakes her head.
I've got a question for you.
A trick question?
No, about a photo I saw in your mum's albums.
JASPER stares at HONEY, wide eyed; nods.
199 INT. JASPER'S BEDROOM. DAY
HELEN, in a dressing gown, stands in the doorway looking at:
HONEY and JASPER lying asleep together in Jasper's bed.
DANIEL, a towel around his waist, walks up, puts his arms around HELEN'S waist, looks at JASPER and HONEY, smiles, rests his head on her shoulder. HELEN smiles, kisses DANIEL'S cheek.
200 INT. CAR. DAY
DANIEL drives. JASPER, in her school uniform, sits in the passenger seat, deep in thought.
What's the difference between a secret and a lie?
DANIEL looks at JASPER, shakes his head, smiles.
Too complicated a question for this early in the day, Jas!
JASPER looks at him. She wants an answer. DANIEL looks away.
Wanna go fishing this arvo?
JASPER does not answer but looks out the window, thinking.
I might be a child but that doesn't mean I'm stupid.