Nicko Vaughan

Screenwriting

EXT. STREET – DAY

ANDREW, a young boy in his late teens, jeans, band t-shirt and a scruffy hair cut walks down a residential street.

A message alert sounds on his phone. He takes the phone out of his pocket and reads the text message “I’m so bored of revising. Quick chat later?” Andrew smiles, puts his phone back in his pocket and continues to walk down the street.

INT. HALLWAY – DAY

In the very lived in hallway of his family home, Andrew kicks off his shoes. A coat stand is barely visible under the weight of several coats, flung haphazardly onto it and the coconut matting welcome mat is worn and dirty.

Andrew checks his hair in the mirror and makes his way down the hall.

INT. LIVING ROOM – DAY

A small living room, typical of a 1960s terraced house. A modern fireplace sits between two book shelf alcoves full of DVDs, ornaments and dusty objects.

On a well worn, scruffy leather sofa sits MIKE, a man in his late 40s, wearing sweatpants and a faded sweatshirt. 

In a comfy chair, adjacent to him, sits MANDY. A woman in her mid 40s, wearing jeans and a loose shirt. She smokes a cigarette as she watches the television, flicking ash into the almost full ashtray which sits on a table between the two of them.

ANDREW

Anything for dinner?

MANDY

There’s some cottage pie in the fridge. Where have you been? It’s late.

MIKE

Been getting up to no good with your fancy piece?

Mike makes smooching noises and hugs himself, Mandy laughs 

but Andrew’s face contorts in embarrassment and annoyance.

ANDREW

I’ve been going over History stuff at Sanjeet’s. Because, his parents aren’t a fucking nightmare.

Mike rises, angrily, from his chair.

MIKE

Watch your tone, you little shit.

Mandy holds her hand up to Mike and he sits back down.

MANDY

Go and get yourself some dinner before you start another argument.

ANDREW

(affronted)

Me? He’s the one being a bell end.

Mike rises from his chair again, Mandy gets up and ushers Andrew quickly out through the living room door.

MANDY

I don’t know what’s gotten into him lately.

MIKE

Christ knows. But any more lip and he’ll be out on his ass.

Mandy tuts, and the pair go back to watching the television.

INT. KITCHEN – NIGHT

Andrew sits at the country style kitchen table. He eats the remains of a large cottage pie out of the dish as he scrolls through his phone. A message alert sounds, “I miss you. FaceTime in 10?”

Andrew hurriedly finishes the cottage pie and throws the dish into the sink. He grabs a can of coke from the fridge and hurries out of the kitchen.

INT. ANDREW’S BEDROOM – NIGHT

An untidy, dark bedroom peppered with film and game posters and unwashed plates. Andrew navigates the small piles of clothes and throws himself onto an unmade bed.

Smiling, he takes his phone and, after a few swipes and taps, a girl’s face appears on the screen. EMILY, a girl in her late teens with long blonde hair and natural looking make up, smiles as she plays with her fringe.

ANDREW

I’ve really missed you today.

She falters for a bit before beaming a big smile once more.

Mum and Mike are being so annoying tonight. 

I swear, if I had the money, I’d be gone. But right now, I’m just happy to see your face.

EMILY

(sighing)

I’ve done so much reading today, my eyes feel like bags of sand.

ANDREW

Your eyes look beautiful, just like the rest of you.

Emily smiles and moves closer to the camera, her nose and lips coming zooming into view. Andrew picks up a sketch pad an starts to lazily draw.

EMILY

Look at my skin. It’s disgusting.

ANDREW

(laughing)

You’re insane. There is absolutely nothing wrong with any part of you.

Emily lets out a big yawn which almost engulfs the camera screen. She shakes her head and ties her hair back into a ponytail.

EMILY

I’m sorry, babe. I’m going to have go before I fall asleep on my phone. I just wanted to say hello before I went to sleep.

ANDREW

That’s okay, You can let me watch you get ready for bed, as compensation for cutting our chat short.

Andrew gives a cheeky wink and Emily brings the camera close to her mouth and blows a kiss.

EMILY

Speak to you tomorrow.

ANDREW

I love you. Idiot

Andrew continues to draw as Emily puts down her phone and starts to undress.

He watches Emily intently, she strips to her underwear and gets a set of pyjama shorts and t-shirt from a chest of drawers. She catches her reflection in the mirror and poses for a moment.

Turning with her back to the camera she bends down to put on her shorts and Andrew’s breath catches.

(whispering)

You have no idea how much I love you.

Emily, dressed, walks back to her phone and puts it aside as the light is switched off.

INT. KITCHEN – DAY

Andrew sits at the kitchen table, eating toast and watching a small television on the counter top. Mandy strolls in wearing a large, fluffy dressing gown, scruffs his hair and starts the coffee machine.

MANDY

So. Are we ever going to meet her?

ANDREW

Who?

MANDY

This elusive new girlfriend of yours.

ANDREW

She’s not elusive. I just don’t want you two putting her off.

MANDY

You’re a cheeky shit, you know that?

Mandy takes a seat next to Andrew at the table, her face soft and kind. She takes a piece of Andrew’s toast and bites into it before putting it back on his plate.

I’m really happy you’ve found a girlfriend. Maybe this will bring you out of yourself a bit more. Give your social life a boost. Just be careful, I’m too young to be a grandmother yet.

Andrew lifts up his arms in annoyed protest and hastily puts on his coat.

ANDREW

Oh my God. This is what I mean by a total fucking nightmare.

He grabs his bag and the last bit of toast and rushes out of the kitchen door.

Mandy shakes her head and gets her coffee. She looks at a picture of a very young Andrew that is stuck to the fridge by an Alton Towers magnet.

She sighs deeply as she sips her coffee.

INT. SCHOOL CAFETERIA – DAY

In a noisy café style cafeteria, Andrew sits at a small table, alone, picking at a bowl of chips. He sits, engrossed, in his sketch pad as he pens an intricate patterned drawing.

Suddenly his book is hit off the table and ROBBIE, a late teen with a blended haircut and a face full of pockmarks, looms over him.

Angrily, Andrew picks up his book from the floor.

ANDREW

What’s your fucking problem?

ROBBIE

You’re my fucking problem. Seeing your gay-as-shit face when I’m trying to eat, is my fucking problem.

ANDREW

Piss off.

ROBBIE

Do you draw pretty pictures as your boyfriend bangs you from behind?

ANDREW

I’ve got a girlfriend, you thick fuck.

Andrew stands up and pushes Robbie with such force that he bumps into the table behind him and topples over it. A second passes before Robbie swings and punches Andrew in the face, causing him to fall to his knees.

Robbie pulls back to deliver another punch but a teacher comes rushing over to break up the gathering crowd. Robbie reaches down, pretending to help Andrew up and whispers into his ear.

ROBBIE

Nobody’s going to save your ass next time. Freak.

Andrew grabs his stuff and runs out as the students jeer and the teacher yells after him.

EXT. SCHOOL GROUNDS – DAY

Andrew stands, leaning against a dilapidated wall at the back of the school. He takes out a cigarette and lights it. Reaching into his pocket he takes out his phone and types a chat message. “I need to see you later, if you’re not going to be in, let me know.”

He takes a large drag of his cigarette and slowly slides down the wall. As he crouches, holding onto his knees, and starts to cry. He touches his cheek and winces in pain.

EXT. EMILY’S HOUSE – NIGHT

Still wearing his school uniform, with his bag over his shoulder, Andrew stops outside the gate of a small terrace house. He looks up at the only window with a light shining from it.

The window is open and the curtains aren’t closed. Through the glass, Emily sits at a small desk, tapping at a computer keyboard.

Andrew smiles to himself and rings the doorbell.

INT. LIVING ROOM – NIGHT

Mandy is stretched out on the sofa, cuddling into Mike as they watch the television. Sheepishly, Andrew walks in and plonks himself onto a chair.

Neither Mike or Mandy take their eyes off the television.

MIKE

Been at Sanjeet’s again, living in paradise with his perfect parents?

ANDREW

No. I’ve been at Emily’s

Mandy looks over and notices the red mark and small cut on Andrew’s face. Instantly she gets up to take a closer look.

MANDY

What’s wrong with your face?

ANDREW

Just some dick at school.

MIKE

I hope you gave him one back.

MANDY

(annoyed)

Mike.(to Andrew) That’s going to be quite a bruise. What happened?

ANDREW

The usual. Minding my own business, when some twat decided to have a go.

MANDY

That’s ridiculous. What’s his name? I’m going up that school first thing Monday morning.

ANDREW

Don’t. You’ll only make it worse.

Mike shifts on the sofa and scoots closer to Mandy who is bend over, examining Andrew’s face.

MIKE

Don’t coddle the boy, Mand. He’s seventeen not seven. (to Andrew) You’re too easy a target, mate. 

Maybe you should put the pens down and take up a sport, or something. Put some hairs on your chest.

ANDREW

Yeah. I’ll just go to school with a rugby ball and all my problems will be magically solved.

MIKE

That’s enough of your lip.

ANDREW

I thought you said I should stand up for myself.

MIKE

Let’s see how well you stand after. I’ve knocked you on your ass.

MANDY

Jesus Christ, it’s like living in a bloody zoo.

Mandy turns to Andrew and gently strokes his face, he turns slightly but doesn’t pull away.

Why don’t you have a nice hot shower? I’ll bring you something up later. (whispering) Don’t mind him, I’ll sort him out.

She ruffles his hair and sits back on the sofa, next to Mike. Andrew gets up and, before he leaves, he puts up two middle fingers to Mike behind his back.

INT. BATHROOM – NIGHT

Andrew stands in front of the bathroom mirror, examining the blooming cut and bruise on his cheek. He is shaken from his thoughts by his phone vibrating on the edge of the bath tub.

He swipes over to the message which reads, “How about lunch tomorrow at Green’s Diner? My treat?” Andrew taps out “You AND a burger? Heaven :)”

He takes of his shirt and folds it onto the closed lid of the toilet. Placing the phone on top, he starts the shower. Another message comes through, “Meet you there at 12.30. Love 

you x x x”

Andrew taps something into his phone and gets into the shower.

INT. GREEN’S DINER – DAY

In a busy little diner filled with American memorabilia and kitsch decorations, Andrew sits alone at a red Formica table. His bag and sketch book are on the table and he sips a large coke, whilst he periodically looks to the door.

He picks up and reads the menu, but looks up when he hears the door open. Emily stands in the doorway, looking around the diner. She looks in Andrew’s direction, enthusiastically waves, and heads towards the table.

Andrew stands, as Emily approaches she bumps into him, causing him to knock into the table and splash a little of his coke onto his sketch book.

EMILY

Oh my God, I’m so sorry. Look. I’ve spilled coke onto your books. I’m so clumsy. Are they okay?

ANDREW

(flustered)

No, no, they’re fine. Not a problem, it was my fault. I stood in your way. It’s 100% all me.

The pair stand in awkward silence for a few moments before Emily steps to the side.

EMILY

Well, I’d better get to my friend’s table. Sorry again.

Emily broadly smiles and she joins two girls on the table behind Andrew. They immediately being to chat enthusiastically.

Andrew puts his belongings into his bag, pays at the counter and quickly leaves.

INT. HALLWAY – DAY

Andrew kicks off his shoes and dumps his bag on the floor in his hallway. As he climbs the stairs, Mandy comes out of the kitchen.

MANDY

Alright, love? I thought you were going to be gone for longer.

ANDREW

Her mum called, something to do with her gran being ill. So she had to go home.

MANDY

Poor thing.

ANDREW

Yeah, I’m just going to call her now to see if she’s okay. Andrew makes his way up the stairs.

MANDY O.S

(shouting)

Give her my love.

INT. ANDREW’S BEDROOM – DAY

Andrew sits on his unmade bed and takes out his phone, he does a few swipes and taps until Emily’s face, once again, fills the screen.

She has the camera very close to her eyes and is gently pulling at the skin underneath.

EMILY

I’m telling you, I’m getting massive bags under my eyes.

GIRL O.S

No you’re not.

Emily pulls the phone away from her face and the screen shows a picture of the ceiling at Green’s Diner.

EMILY O.S

(muffled)

If I don’t pass English after all the work I’ve been doing, I’m going to drive off a cliff.

GIRL O.S

You’ll have to pass your test first.

Andrew lays the phone on his chest and flops backwards onto the bed. He groans with exasperation as he shuts his eyes.

INT. ANDREW’S BEDROOM – NIGHT

FLASHBACK

Andrew lays on his bed, opens his phone and scrolls through a list of names and numbers. He taps Emily IP 216.3.128.12 and then taps the option “IP Webcam

http://216.3.128.12:2525″

Emily’s face fills the camera screen, Andrew smiles as soon as he sees her.

ANDREW

I’ve really missed you today.

EXT. EMILY’S HOUSE – NIGHT

FLASHBACK

Andrew looks up at Emily at her desk in the window of her house. He walks up the path, presses the doorbell and runs over the road. He crouches down and hides behind the small wall of the house opposite.

He watches as Emily opens the door and looks around to see if anybody is there. Confused and annoyed, she closes the door again.

INT. BATHROOM – NIGHT

FLASHBACK

The phone on the bathtub vibrates, Andrew picks it up and selects Emily IP 216.3.128.12. The screen shows the message “How about lunch tomorrow at Green’s Diner? My treat?”

Andrew taps out “You AND a burger? Heaven :)” and it instantly shows the error message, “This message could not be sent, no server found”

He reads her next message, “Meet you there at 12.30. Love you x x x” and taps out “Green’s Diner, 12.30” into the notes app on his phone.

FLASHBACK END

INT. ANDREW’S BEDROOM – NIGHT

Andrew sits up and swipes away the feed of Emily’s camera phone and scrolls through the list of names and numbers. He taps Emily IP 216.3.128.12 and holds until the “Delete contact” message comes up. He taps “yes” and the name disappears.

Scrolling through again, he stops and clicks on Zoe IP 216.3.125.12 and then “IP Webcam http://216.3.125.12:8020”.

The screen fills with the face of a dark haired girl in her late teens, bright red lipstick and a few piercings.

ZOE

I don’t even know why she bothers talking to me.

He takes out his sketch pad and rips out the pictures of Emily. He opens his bedside drawer and puts the drawings on top of a stack of drawings of other young girls.

Andrew makes himself comfortable on the bed and holds his phone close to his face.

ANDREW

I’ve really missed you today.

END