Ama screenplay – First draft – Scene 25 (2nd continuation)

Ama screenplay – First draft – Scene 25 (2nd continuation)

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25. (continued)

JASON

I don’t understand.

DERWOOD

No, I got a fuzzy head over it, too. But I got to find the thing Lilith left here before the flowers die.

JASON

Why? What happens when they die?

DERWOOD

Oh dear. Ye got to get away before they die. If ye don’t get out of hell before then, yer never leaving. The mountain is always too far, and ye have to get back here before the first one dies. If one goes, the next will be quick to follow, then another, then another. Just keeps getting faster and faster—the dying—faster, until ye end up with a…

DERWOOD looks nervously at the mountain.

JASON

How long have you been here, Derwood?

DERWOOD

Don’t know. There be no sun, and no night nor day either, to count the days by. Would keep a tally of the times I slept, but…

JASON

But what?

DERWOOD

There be no sleeping in hell.

JASON

What year do you think it is?

DERWOOD

Tis an odd question. The same year ye think it be.

JASON

What year?

DERWOOD

There be no dung heap in me head. Don’t ye be calling me a fool.

JASON

I won’t call you a fool, Derwood. I’m just curious about something. Please, what year?

DERWOOD

I didn’t know that before I came here. Never had a reason to know the years. Just know when to plant and when to dig a plateful. The weather told me all I needed to know.

JASON

Have you ever used the net, Derwood?

DERWOOD

No. No need to. The sea was a ways away and I don’t much like fish, anyway. Used me friend’s funny-looking basket to catch an eel once, in the river, but it tasted much like it looked: a soggy turd. He laughed when he saw me trying to catch the wriggling thing, but that was all right. I don’t mean harm to no one and I wish I hadn’t killed that man. If I can find the thing Lilith left here, then maybe I can make things right again somehow.

DERWOOD and JASON both flinch as one of LILITH’S FLOWERS explodes near to them.

JASON

What are all these statues about?

DERWOOD

They not be statues, Jason.

JASON

They’re all turning into sand.

DERWOOD

Aye, they do that. Puff, and then they’re gone.

JASON

Why do they do that?

DERWOOD

They have their time, and then they die.

JASON

They die? You mean they’re alive right now?

DERWOOD

Aye… Well, no. They appear, and at some point they die, that’s when they goes puff, but they don’t get the bit in the middle, the alive bit. All they do is stand there in the desert. Never get to open their eyes and see anything. Like I said, I can’t get me head round it. The mad woman says she knows what it’s all about, but she be… well, she be mad. A lifetime of emptiness, so she said. Get more sense from one of these here statues.

JASON

Mad woman? Can she help me? Where is she, Derwood?

DERWOOD

Over there, by the mountain. She lives in the temple, a temple in the middle of an enormous hole in the ground. But I’d stay well away from her if ye knows what’s best, because she’s mad as that damn eel. Sings to the grey folk, so she does, and when they goes puff, she cries. Thee needs to watch out for the strange ones down here in hell, Jason. There be dark wonders everywhere.

JASON

Can you take me to her?

JASON collapses in pain.


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