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KUSHEdit



Written by: Damian Kindler
Directed by: Martin Wood


EXT 1880 ENGLAND

[Helen and John exit a theatre and get into a horse-drawn coach.]

HELEN
I take it you're feeling much better.

JOHN
Ah, there's nothing like the attentions of a capable physician to cure the chronically ill.

HELEN
You were never ill. It was simply...

JOHN
…An element of my physiology as yet undiscovered by medicine.

DRIVER
Where to this evening?

HELEN
A turn through Piccadilly to start, please.

JOHN
You’ve done so much for me.

HELEN
John, I hardly...

JOHN
Let me speak, Doctor. I've spent my entire life lost in a void, afraid of who I am... of what I am. If not for you, I fear I would have remained lost. Instead, I can now see that I am neither a freak of nature nor a devil, but a man... very much in love.

[John pulls out a ring box and opens it holding it toward Helen.]

JOHN
And someone who wishes to spend the rest of his life repaying his savior for all she's done. I promise to make you happy, Helen, for all eternity...

PRESENT DAY, INT CRASHED PLANE.

[Debris surrounds Helen as she becomes conscious. She starts pushing debris away to free herself. She hears Will groaning.]

HELEN
Will!

HELEN
Will!

[Helen finds Will under debris.]

HELEN
You all right?

WILL
Yeah. That was... That was bad.

[Sylvio appears from under some debris near Will.]

SYLVIO
Oh, damn!

WILL
Sylvio! You okay?

SYLVIO
What do you think?

WILL
Where the hell are we?

[Helen stands up and wipes off window and looks out.]

HELEN
To be honest...no idea.

[A wide shot of the exterior of the crashed plane shows them in a severe storm in mountainous area.]

TIRICH MIR CENTRAL HINDU KUSH MOUNTAIN RANGE 100 MILES NORTH OF PESHAWAR, PAKISTAN

[Inside the plane; Will looks for survivors as Helen treats Slyvio.]

WILL
Allison!

ALLISON
Oh. Oh God!

WILL
Allison!

ALLISON
Are we, are we, are we

WILL
It's okay, it's okay.

ALLISON
That thing!

WILL
Hey, hey, hey, hey! Look, it's gone. It's gone, all right? Look at me. You're fine. You're fine, okay?

BRAUN
Yeah! That's very helpful. Tell her she's fine; even though we're totally screwed.

BRAUN
Ah!

[Helen moves to help Braun.]

HELEN
Your arm!

BRAUN
Don't touch me. I'll do it.

[Braun’s shoulder is dislocated. He puts it back in place by hitting his shoulder into crates behind him.]

BRAUN
See? All better.

[Helen goes to the cockpit to check on the pilots. Only one pilot is in the cockpit and he appears to be dead. He has deep lacerations across his face. Helen leaves the cockpit and removes debris and finds another man.]

STRICKLAND
No, no, go away!

HELEN
It's all right. It's all right. You're alive.

STRICKLAND
Did we make it?

HELEN
We're down, yes; looks like your co-pilot did most of the work though. I was in the washroom when it happened. I heard screams.

HELEN
Don't move. Your leg is broken. I'll tend to it in a moment.

[Helen starts to look for something in a bag.]

STRICKLAND
What are you doing?

HELEN
Getting us out of here.

[She removes a satellite phone.]

HELEN
I can't get a signal.

[Helen exits the plane into the snow storm.]

ALTERNATES BETWEEN HELEN, AND ASHLEY AND BIGFOOT BACK AT THE SANCTUARY]

ASHLEY [on phone]
Mom? Thank God.

HELEN
Ashley. I'm fine. We lost the pilot, but the rest of us are okay.

ASHLEY
We know. We've been tracking you the entire time. What happened?

HELEN
I'll give you the details later! We have some wounded who need immediate medical attention!

ASHLEY
OK. We got you. Sat tracking has the crash site located in the central Hindu Kush. We already have a rescue team mobilizing out of Islamabad. ETA should be about five hours.

HELEN
Good work! I'll see you when I get home!

ASHLEY
Mom....It's really good to hear your voice.

HELEN
It's good to hear yours, too, Ashley.

[Helen goes back inside plane.]

HELEN
I have good news. A rescue team will be here in about five hours. In the meantime, we'll assess your injuries and try to keep you all as warm as possible, and if the Gods are smiling, I'll find some tea and make us all a pot.

WILL
See? You'll be back in New Delhi by breakfast.

ALLISON
I should've guessed this would be no match for the great Helen Magnus.

WILL
Exactly, never doubt the boss.

SYLVIO
Magnus! Will...

[Sylvio motions for them to join him at the back of the plane. He shows them a cage that is damaged.]

SYLVIO
This is definitely after the punch line.

[Flashback of a creature attacking the pilot.]

WILL
You think it survived the crash?

HELEN
We did.

SYLVIO
I'm still getting paid, right? I mean I did fulfil the contract to find and capture one bad-ass snow creature. I mean what happens after that...

WILL
Give it a rest, all right?

HELEN
Start securing the plane. Do what you can to block out the cold. Five hours is a long time to be exposed to these temperatures.

SYLVIO
I'll see what I can dig up.

[Sylvio leaves Helen and Will.]

WILL
I know you wanted this one badly.

HELEN
Not like this. Well at least we know why no one's captured one before. They're a hardy breed.

WILL
Yeah and here we are, stuck on its turf. I'm not sure I like not knowing whether that thing is alive or dead.

[A noise is heard and Helen pulls out her gun and aims it from the direction of the noise. Will removes debris and a man is found. Alarmed the man quickly speaks in a foreign language to them.]

WILL
Can you understand him?

HELEN
It's a dialect of Tibetan.

WILL
Wasn't he one of the Sherpa on the expedition?

HELEN
Yes, he must have stowed away on the flight.

WILL
Bad move.

HELEN
Your name is Tashi, right?

[Tashi nods yes.]

HELEN
Can you stand?

[Tashi stands up.]

HELEN
It's all right. You're safe. The thing is gone. Let me see your hand.

[Raised voices can be heard from another section of the plane.]

HELEN
Look after him.

[Helen moves to the forward section of the plane. Braun is in Sylvio’s face.]

BRAUN
I think you are! I mean, we have a right to an explanation! What the hell was that thing? How did it get in this plane, man?

HELEN
It was our cargo. A rare species of snow leopard captured in Tajikistan, north of Dushanbe.

STRICKLAND
Never heard of a snow leopard attacking a group of people before.

HELEN
It was a rare offshoot of the species.

ALLISON
Its designation is Cryptid Bipedis Himalaya

BRAUN
You expect us to believe that that was a leopard? That was four times the size of any cat.

STRICKLAND
Whatever it was, it brought the plane down. Who are you people?

[Will and Tashi have joined them.]

WILL
We're with a private research foundation.

HELEN
The creature we brought back was unique, and I deeply regret what happened. Our intention was to transport it to our facility in New Delhi run by Dr. Grant here. I have many such Sanctuaries around the world. New Delhi was the closest, and with such dangerous cargo...

BRAUN
Yeah, well, hooray for you and your safety protocols, because they worked like a charm, right?

WILL
We didn't mean for this to happen. - We took every precaution possible.

BRAUN
Really? 'Cause he's dead! We're stranded here, and your cargo gone. Or is it?

HELEN
We don't know.

STRICKLAND
What does that mean?

BRAUN
That means we could be attacked at any time...

HELEN
That is extremely unlikely. These creatures are incredibly shy and used to their natural habitat. If it did survive, it would have sought refuge higher up the mountain.

BRAUN
Shy? That creature, whatever the hell it was, almost killed every one of us! And who the hell is he?

WILL
A stowaway; a Sherpa who helped us capture the creature.

BRAUN
Oh really? Well, good for you! How about you go out there and do it again! - This time make sure it's dead!

SYLVIO
Hey! You obviously have a problem knowing when to shut up, man.

[Tashi speaks in foreign language.]

ALLISON
He wanted to come back with us. He has family in Peshawar he hasn't seen in years.

HELEN
Why not just ask for a lift?

[Allison asks Tashi in his language.]

ALLISON
He was afraid that you would refuse him and he's very sorry that he deceived you, and he asks for your forgiveness.

HELEN
Well, you certainly picked the wrong flight. Alright even though rescue will be here soon, we still need to keep warm. It will help us with the shock of what we've just endured. Everyone, find some tools and help seal up the plane.

BRAUN
Yes, ma'am.

[They all work together to seal up plane.]

INT SANCTUARY

[Ashley and Bigfoot are looking at a computer monitor.]

BIGFOOT
A storm.

ASHLEY
An arctic outflow system moving into the region really fast.

BIGFOOT
It's huge.

ASHLEY
Rescue teams won't be able to get into the region until the weather clears. Size of this one, it could take days. Grab our winter gear. I'll have Hans get a plane ready, wheels up in four hours. I want us leading the rescue team the second the weather breaks.

INT PLANE

WILL
All right, that outta do it.

BRAUN
Well we're not much better off in here.

WILL
This is for a few days, until the storm passes.

BRAUN
Kid, I've been fixing planes up here for 15 years. Winter storms in this part of the world are not like the winter storms in your part of the world. They can last a few weeks before they roll out.

SYLVIO
A few weeks?

BRAUN
Do you know what "Hindu Kush" means? "Slayer of Hindus"; so named by the locals here because they believe that the weather and the mountains were created by God for the sole purpose of killing people. Fun place for a plane crash, huh?

[Will moves to forward section of the plane. He passes Helen who is treating Tashi.]

HELEN
All right, that'll do it try to find a place to sleep.

[Helen starts to follow Will and is stopped by Strickland’s words.]

STRICKLAND
I wasn't hiding, you know...when it happened.

[Helen kneels down next to Strickland.]

HELEN
No one's saying that you were.

STRICKLAND
You're thinking it. Everybody's thinking it.

HELEN
Everyone was terrified.

STRICKLAND
You weren't.

HELEN
It's different for me. I've been doing this for a long time.

STRICKLAND
You think we crashed because I wasn't in the cockpit, that I should have been there, tried to keep us in the air. - I had to use the restroom, all right?

HELEN
Please...try to get some sleep, all right?

[She gets up and moves through the hatchway where she sees Will pour hot liquid from a container.]

HELEN
Oh, please tell me that that is tea.

WILL
Gods are on vacation. It's coffee. Here.

HELEN
Pass.

WILL
Come on, it'll help you keep warm.

HELEN
I have standards, Will. Drinking coffee? Well below them.

WILL
Man, you are a Brit to the core, aren't you?

HELEN
And proud of it.

WILL
So, I’ve taken stock of things. We don't have a lot of food left, maybe a day or so, and the heater fuel is not going to last much longer either.

HELEN
All right, we'll ration everything very carefully. This could be home for a long while.

WILL
Yeah, well you never know. This place, a little redecorating... Probably still feel like a doomed hellhole.

HELEN
Is that your way of saying any port in the storm?

WILL
No, it's my way of coping with the fact that this is the world's worst cup of coffee.

HELEN
Rule Britannia.

NIGHT INT PLANE

[Everyone is sleeping. Strickland awakes.]

STRICKLAND
What do you want?

[A young John appears in hatchway.]

JOHN
My love.

[Helen awakes suddenly.]

HELEN
No!

[Helen looks to hatchway….no John. No once else is awake. Helen notices a puddle of blood under Strickland.]

LATER THAT NIGHT INT PLANE

[Braun and Allison have gathered around Helen and Will who are examining Strickland’s body.]

ALLISON
Magnus, what's happening?

HELEN
The co-pilot appears to have committed suicide.

BRAUN
This is crazy. Why would we he do that?

HELEN
Just give us some space.

ALLISON
Come on.

BRAUN
Yeah

[Braun and Allison leave.]

WILL
Looks like he used a broken piece of glass; why would he just give up like this? Yeah, I know the rescue is delayed, but still.

[Helen removes a bottle of alcohol from Strickland’s pocket.]

HELEN
Hardly in keeping with aviation regulations, plus he abandoned his post when the creature attacked. Who knows what other skeletons he had in his closet?

WILL
What if it wasn't a suicide?

HELEN
No sign of a struggle. No screams, cries for help, any of which would have woken us up.

WILL
Unless he knew his attacker. You said Strickland felt people were angry at him for not helping fly the plane when the creature attacked. What if he was right?

HELEN
Mad enough to kill, with all of us here and absolutely no place to hide; a bit of a stretch.

WILL
Sorry, but you pay me for my outlandish theories.

[Allison comes through doorway to talk with Tashi and draws Helen’s attention. Helen sees John behind Allison. She turns away and then looks back….it’s not John it is Braun.]

LATER INT PLANE

[Allison and Will carry Strickland’s body away. The rest of seated lost in their own thoughts.]

LATER INT PLANE

[Slyvio sits beside Tashi.]

SYLVIO
Tashi, right? Toshi? That's your name? Sylvio. Did I ever tell you about my fiancée, Giselle? She and I got something real nice going on. I hunt monsters. I catch 'em and bring 'em back, alive or dead, for cash. Cash I'm using to set me and my girl up real nice, so if you stowed away on this plane to take a shot at me, or come between me and the money I'm owed? Nothing personal, Sherpa man, but... I will end you.

[Sylvio returns to his prior seat.]

LATER INT PLANE

[Everyone is sleeping.]

WOMAN’S VOICE
Will, stay where you are.

WILL
No...

WOMAN’S VOICE
Just stay put.

WILL
Mom?

[A woman with lacerations across her face moves through doorway.]

WOMAN
Will... I'll be right back.

[Will awakes. Helen has apparently awakened him as raised voice can be heard.]

HELEN
Come on. It's getting ugly.

[Voices of Braun and Sylvio can be heard from another area of the plane.]

BRAUN
What the hell was that thing.

SYLVIO
…To take us all out in our sleep?

[Sylvio has his arm against Braun’s throat holding him against the wall of the plane.]

BRAUN
You tell me.

[Helen, Will, and Allison come into the section where Braun and Slyvio are.]

HELEN
What's going on here?

SYLVIO
Seems Tashi caught Mr. Sneaky mechanic here trying to steal some of our hardware; one of my best sellers.

[Sylvio hands Helen a gun and she examines it.]

SLYVIO
Gonna shoot a weapons dealer with his own gun? You can see how the irony is lost on me!

BRAUN
It was for protection, all right? You don't think I see that you're all packing weapons? I'm just trying to level the playing field here people.

HELEN
It's not even loaded. Sylvio let him go. Mr. Braun, these cases are our property, and I'll thank you to remember that even under these trying circumstances, and the weapons we carry are for everyone's protection.

BRAUN
Then give me a gun.

WILL
That is definitely not happening.

BRAUN
So I'm supposed to sit here and let one of you kill me in my sleep? No, I don't think so. I'm not going down without a fight.

[Tashi speaks to them in foreign language.]

BRAUN
Someone shut him up?

HELEN
Or I could start with you. Everyone, get some sleep.

[Everyone moves back to other part of the cabin.]

LATER INT PLANE

[Everyone is once again asleep. A hand is brushing the hair out of Helen’s face.]

HELEN
John?

JOHN
I promise to make you happy, Helen, for all eternity.

HELEN
No.

[Helen awakes with a start. She picks up her gun and goes back to sleep.]

[Sylvio awakes and sees his financee.]

GISELLE
Sylvio... Sylvio...

SYLVIO
Giselle?

GISELLE
Hey, baby.

SYLVIO
Are you for real, girl?

GISELLE
Kiss me and find out.

[As they embrace in a kiss she draws a knife and stabs Sylvio.]

GISELLE
I love you, baby.

[Sylvio collapses.]

LATER INT PLANE

[Helen is kneeling over Sylvio’s body. The others are nearby.]

HELEN
We've lost a valuable member of our team.

WILL
Severe abdominal laceration and he had to have been killed here. There'd be a mess if he were moved afterward.

HELEN
There are no other injuries of any kind. No defensive wounds.

WILL
No, it’s like he just let somebody stab him.

BRAUN
What is wrong with you people? We know who killed him. I mean, come on, look! Look. Look! No! Look!

[Braun goes after Tashi but Will stops him.]

HELEN
Mr. Braun.

WILL
Calm down.

BRAUN
He did it, and I can prove it.

HELEN
Really? How?

BRAUN
Around his neck, look. I've seen other Sherpas with that, the ones that believe that the yeti is some kind of god.

HELEN
The Order of Pangboche, a group of Tibetan mystics who worship the creature as a protector of the mountains.

BRAUN
So now we know who let the damn thing loose in the first place. What more reason would he need to kill us all? We tried to steal his people's damn sacred cow.

[Tashi speaks.]

WILL
Hold on. What is he saying?

ALLISON
He says the medallion was a gift from his cousin, that he doesn't worship the creature, and why would he help to capture something only to free it again?

BRAUN
Revenge, to teach us a lesson so we don't try and hunt it again...

WILL
Hold on, hold on. Now, Tashi claims that he's not part of this Pangboche Order, correct? And, I'm sorry, but having a medallion is hardly proof of intent to kill.

HELEN
Will's right. We can't condemn a man because of his beliefs. Leave him alone.

BRAUN
Oh, I get it.

WILL
Braun...

BRAUN
I get it. You had Sherpa boy kill Strickland, and then you had him murder the weapons guy. Why, because you owed him money? So you take me out, and there you go, no more witnesses to your little massacre. Wow.

HELEN
You're being completely irrational. There are still far too many unanswered questions.

BRAUN
No, no, no, see, I will not go quietly. No, no. Go ahead and try, but I'll fight you. Gees, you’re nuts.

[Braun leaves.]

ALLISON
I'll go keep an eye on him.

HELEN
Take Tashi with you.

WILL
All right, what the hell...what the hell is going on here? Why would somebody go on a killing spree in a stranded plane?

HELEN
They wouldn't. Come here.

[Helen leads Will to the back of the plane.]

HELEN
I need to ask you something, and it may sound strange.

WILL
Oh believe me; I'm getting very used to strange.

HELEN
Have you had any dreams, hallucinations; incredibly vivid, too real to ignore?

WILL
People who couldn't possibly be there…

HELEN
…And yet you can feel their presence, yes.

WILL
It’s tricks of the mind; post-traumatic stress, plus the elevation and exhaustion.

HELEN
I thought so too at first, but now I'm beginning to have my doubts.

WILL
Why do you say that?

[Helen uncovers Strickland’s body.]

HELEN
Describe his wounds.

WILL
Ah, a deep cross-length laceration.

HELEN
Interesting, I see a diagonal laceration from palm to forearm.

WILL
What? Well, how is that possible? One of us has to be right.

HELEN
Or we're both wrong. Something is affecting our minds, clouding our judgment.

WILL
What do you mean, like mind control? But there's nobody on this plane who could... The creature... You think it's among us?

HELEN
And hiding in plain sight using this telepathic power to conceal itself.

WILL
What, by making itself invisible?

HELEN
Or by posing as one of us, it can make us see things that aren't even real.

WILL
But why would it hang around? I mean this is its terrain.

HELEN
Well maybe it marked this as its hunting ground. It sees us as a threat. Abnormals aren't like humans. They don't play by the same rules that we understand. But clearly it's having an effect on us. We can't trust anything that we see or hear or even feel.

WILL
But there's got to be some way of knowing who we can trust. Wait. "A hardy breed..." If its natural habitat is sub-arctic temperatures, then it would have to have a pretty special physiology, right? Even for an abnormal.

INT PLANE

[Allison is drawing Braun’s blood. Once she is done she walks to the front of the plane where Helen is and gives her the container. Helen has a number of the containers on a tray.]

ALLISON
How will this show us anything? We don't have any equipment. We can't do a proper analysis.

HELEN
On the contrary, we have exactly what we need. This creature thrives in high altitudes and extremely low temperatures. It would have to have some sort of protective protein or antibody in its blood; otherwise it would never be able to survive the harsh conditions. Now, normal blood will freeze in temperatures this low in minutes. My thought is that the creature's won't.

ALLISON
How can one of us be...?

HELEN
It's just a theory, Allison, hopefully one we can rule out.

[Helen takes the tray outside the plane, puts it down and returns inside the plane.]

HELEN
All right, 10 minutes should be enough time.

ALLISON
I'm sorry. This situation is just... - I'm trying to stay calm.

HELEN
We all are. Believe me; I've been in far worse situations than this.

ALLISON
You have?

HELEN
Absolutely, there was a town of zombies in Uganda, and of course I ran out of ammunition just as night fell. A deep sea capsule I was in was trapped underneath a gigantic mutated squid, and there was an escaped lunatic who was able to turn himself into a giant ape.

ALLISON
Thanks. You just made all that up, didn't you?

HELEN
Only two of them; my point is, you just have to keep trying, no matter what and that's how we'll stay alive.

[Meanwhile Will, Tashi and Braun are sitting further back in the cabin of the plane.]

BRAUN
So what if your little test doesn't work? What then?

WILL
We'll try something else.

BRAUN
Well, hurray, Mr. Positive.

WILL
Braun, do me a favor, all right? Just drop this whole "I'm angry at the world" routine, because it's getting very old.

BRAUN
What are you, some kind of a shrink now?

WILL
Yes. As a matter of fact, I am.

BRAUN
So what? Have you been psychoanalysing me the whole time? What's your prognosis, Doc; angry at my mommy? Didn't get enough toys as a kid...

WILL
You're afraid, and there's a lot of that going around, so it doesn't make you so special.

BRAUN
No, but it does make me human.

[As Will moves forward; Helen is returning with the containers of blood. They examine them and all see one that is not frozen.]

WILL
Braun.

HELEN
I see the same thing.

[Helen draws her gun and cocks it; moving toward Braun.]

BRAUN
No. No. No.

WILL
Just stay calm.

BRAUN
It isn't me. - It isn't me...

WILL
Just calm down.

BRAUN
I'm not the creature.

[They have moved back and Helen opens the door to a large safe.]

HELEN
Just until the rescue arrives.

BRAUN
No you don't have to do this. I'm not a monster, all right? I've been seeing things, yes, okay? I've been seeing things that I can't explain. But that does not make me a monster. Please!

WILL
This is for your own safety as well as ours.

BRAUN
No, no, no.

[Braun starts to get in safe.]

HELEN
Mr. Braun, please, we really have no choice.

BRAUN
I can't do small spaces. Please. Please... Please.

[Will shuts the door to the safe.]

BRAUN
Oh no,no,no,no. No! No! Don’t! Please, don't. Please... I'm not the monster. Please, I'm not the monster, please!

[Allison, Will, and Helen are distressed as Braun continues to beg to be let out but no one lets him out.]

BRAUN
I'm not good in... I'm not good in small spaces. Oh, please... I'm human. I'm human like you. Please. Oh, please, help. I'm not a monster.

LATER INT PLANE

[Everyone but Tashi is sleeping. Tashi is sitting close to the safe and Braun is still heard pleading to be let out. Tashi gradually falls asleep but wakes with a start and yells out. Allison and the others rush to him.]

ALLISON
Oh, my God!

[The door to the safe is open and Braun is dead.]

HELEN
Did he see anything?

ALLISON
No, he says he felt like something overcame him and made him feel like he was in a dream, even though he swears he was awake the whole time.

WILL
But he was right in front of the compartment. Did he hear anything? Did Braun call for help?

ALLISON
He was back in his village. He was at a celebration. He was dancing at his wedding with his wife. And then he felt like he was possessed by something evil.

HELEN
All right, Tashi, come with us.

[Helen and Allison lead Tashi out of the compartment.]

LATER INT PLANE

[Helen is once again returning inside the plane with the tray of blood. She goes to the back where Will is still examining Braun and the scene.]

WILL
Just to clarify, you're not seeing a monster, right?

HELEN
Are you?

WILL
I wish I was. How does the guy we id as the creature turn out to be its next victim?

HELEN
Because he's human; I've just run the test again.

WILL
But we both saw it before. It wasn't frozen.

HELEN
We saw what the creature wanted us to see, in order to throw us off the scent. I should have anticipated something like this. The legends about the creature; some call it a skinwalker. Others say it eats your soul. Add the fact no one's ever caught one before and I should have realized the initial capture went down too easily.

WILL
Tashi said that he was at his wedding, dancing with his wife. With each kill, it's like we enter this vivid dream-like state that distracts us from the events.

HELEN
It knows exactly what to show us in order to completely divert our focus.

WILL
But why, why is it just hanging around, picking us off one by one?

HELEN
Perhaps it has no choice.

WILL
It has to be here to survive, too.

[Helen and Will go back to look at the creature’s cage.]

HELEN
What do you see?

WILL
Ah, I see a door off its hinges.

HELEN
Touch it.

[Will moves the door to the cage and touches a jagged hole.]

HELEN
Now, try to see what's really there.

WILL
I see a lock.

HELEN
I don't.

[Will closes his eyes briefly to concentrate and then takes another look.]

WILL
There's no lock. There's no damage. The door was open the entire time.

HELEN
The less we use our eyes...

WILL
The more we see. Okay, okay, so, what are we not looking for, then?

HELEN
There.

[Helen points her flashlight at grooves inside the cage.]

HELEN
These couldn't have been made by the creature we believe we saw. It barely had enough room to move in, and its claws were four times this size.

WILL
And don't cold weather mammals molt under stress?

HELEN
There's no sign of any fur in here.

WILL
So there never was a 400-pound yeti.

HELEN
No. These scratches were made by something much smaller, almost human sized. It just made us think we were dealing with something far more intimidating, likely whatever our subconscious dictated it would be.

WILL
Okay, so if what we saw before was just a Jedi mind trick, what the hell does this damn thing look like?

HELEN
I have no idea, but it's a good bet that it's as vulnerable to the cold as we are, hence its need to blend in among us in order to survive.

WILL
Magnus... - how do I know that...

HELEN
I'm me?

WILL
Yeah.

HELEN
You don't. Nor am I certain that you're you. The creature could be any one of us.

WILL
I keep thinking there must be some way of telling, you know; a way of knowing if the person's really them.

HELEN
For the moment we'll just have to rely on the little things.

WILL
Like the fact that the real you wouldn't insult me by giving me false hope.

HELEN
Or the fact you keep offering me that horrible brown sludge to drink.

WILL
You know, that thing's never attacked two of us at once, which means it's only powerful enough to handle one of us at a time.

HELEN
So alone, we're vulnerable.

WILL
We stay close, we live.

NIGHT INT PLANE

HELEN
I'll take first watch.

WILL
All right, this is the last gas canister. It's going to get cold tonight.

[Will sets the canister down and then sits beside Helen.]

SHORT TIME LATER INT PLANE

[Helen has fallen asleep along with the others.]

WOMAN’S VOICE
Will, stay where you are…just stay put.

WILL
Mom...

WOMAN VOICE
I'll be right back.

[Will wakes with a start. Everyone else is still sleeping. Will hears a helicopter.]

WILL
They're here... They're here.

[Will wakes the others.]

WILL
Hey, they're here! They're here!

[Will goes to the door of the plane to look out the window. Ashley opens the door and enters the plane.]

ASHLEY
Heard you guys were looking for a lift?

HELEN
Ashley!

[Helen hugs Ashley.]

WILL
It's good to see you, Big Guy!

[Will gives Big Foot a manly hug.]

ASHLEY
Okay, we've only got a short break in the storm, so let's get you guys out of here, pronto!

BIGFOOT
I'll help the others.

[They exit the plane.]

HELEN
Will, come on!

WILL
Okay!

ASHLEY
Will, come on, move it!

[Will stops before getting into the harness that is lowered from the helicopter. He turns around and sees his Mom.]

WILL
This isn't real.

HELEN
Put on your harness!

WILL
You're not real!

[Suddenly Will finds himself outside the plane in the storm with no one around. Running back to the plane he trips over the body of Allison.]

WILL
Allison! …No!

[Meanwhile back inside the plane Helen and Tashi are asleep. Someone grabs Tashi waking him and stabs him. It’s the creature posing as Allison. The creature looks at Helen and notices the gun Helen is holding in her lap.]

[Helen is dreaming again. A present day looking John is sitting beside her.]

JOHN
Did you ever love me? I mean, truly love me? You know I'm just an element of your subconscious mind, so feel free to be completely frank.

HELEN
When I first knew you at Oxford, I loved you with my entire being.

JOHN
Those were passionate times, gone too quickly...followed by very dark days.

HELEN
You destroyed my heart, John. Even though I understood why you had changed, your ailment, the hatred you felt towards me, and then the way you would harm our daughter.

JOHN
Let me make it up to you. I need you to wake up.

[John reaches out and touches her face and then shouts.

JOHN
Now!

[Helen wakes as Will is coming up the aisle.]

WILL
Hey, you all right? You look like you were having a hell of a dream.

[Will sits beside her.]

HELEN
I must have dozed off.

[The real Will is pounding on the window to get Helen’s attention. Helen can’t hear it and doesn’t see him as the creature is keeping her attention on him.

HELEN
Is everything...

WILL
Everything's fine, though you were supposed to be keeping watch. I'll take over if you want.

[Real Will gives up on the window and tries to open the door.]

WILL
Magnus!

WOMAN
Will... Stay where you are.

WILL
Mom?

WOMAN
We never got a chance to talk. Talk with me, Will.

WILL
You're not real.

WOMAN
Does that really matter?

WILL
You died when I was eight! You don't even know me anymore!

WOMAN
That doesn't mean I don't love you. Stay with me!

WILL
I can't.

WOMAN
Will!

WILL
I can't!

[Meanwhile, inside the plane.]

CREATURE/WILL
Seriously, you should get some sleep. I got your back.

HELEN
I'm chilled to the bone. Could you make me something hot to drink?

CREATURE/WILL
Yeah, sure; I'll make some tea.

[The creature posing as Will gets up to make the coffee but turns back next to seat as Helen speaks.]

HELEN
I'd prefer coffee.

CREATURE/WILL
Of course.

[Helen raises her gun, without hesitation, and shoots the creature. The creature collapses and Will manages to get the door open.]

WILL
You finally got one, the first capture ever.

HELEN
Hell of a cost.

WILL
That's beyond ugly.

[Will is looking at the creature. He sits down beside Helen who has returned to her seat after checking Tashi.]

WILL
How did you know it wasn't me?

HELEN
Like I said, it's the little things.

WILL
The less we use our eyes...

HELEN
Welcome to reality.

WILL
I'm happy to be here.


THE END


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