Dear Diary
rating: +9+x

Dear Diary
………………………

*Click click tap click tap tap tap*

Alright, Videira. Here's the script you were wondering about. This thing was a sort of dramatization of a little research disaster that happened in July four years back. It was meant to illustrate to some of our less cautious researchers the value of emotional detachment during the job, or some BS like that. Never really got produced, and no, I don't know why not. It's missing the a bit of narration that was meant to go in before and after the thing played. If I remember correctly, just details about the event. I think that it was something about this being written from live video feed, with creative liberty taken only when necessary. I found what I could about the incident, and it seems to match pretty well. Apparently the SCP was destroyed by the girl afterward, which is one reason they got worked up about it enough to start making this thing… I guess someone wanted to use it for questioning the dead or something. Since the research was never completed and the thing got burned, there's no official entry in the database on it. The guy's name matches the other stuff I've found, but the girl's name is only here - I guess they didn't want anyone to find out what happened to her. Seeing as she destroyed a potentially useful SCP after making a rather serious mistake in studying it, I can see why they might not want that to appear in a human resources type video. I can keep digging for more, if you'd like, but I can't make any promises.
- J.N.

p.s. - Dinner, Saturday.

*Click click click tap*
*Beep*

-*-*-*-*-*

ACT I

FADE IN
INT. HOUSE - NIGHT

A small room with a medium-sized bed and two chairs. There are two doors, on either side of the room (One leads to a small bathroom, the other to a hallway). Everything is white and sanitary.

A MAN is sitting on the bed. He is holding tightly on to a book. He is in mid teen years, and is wearing clean white hospital clothes.

Two researchers are standing in the hall. One is MASON, an early middle-aged man, the other is HOLLY, a woman also in early middle age. Both wear lab coats.

ANGLE ON HALLWAY.

HOLLY
Well, Mason, you got the tickets?

MASON
Of course I do, Hol. Vacation in Vienna. Two months. I promised, didn’t I?

HOLLY
God, I’ll be glad to see the back of this place. When do we leave?

MASON
Friday. We just need to finish the interview, see what makes him tick. And he’s a safe class, so we can take it easy.

HOLLY
I don’t think I’ve ever had this much go right before, honey.

MASON and HOLLY grip each other's hands briefly, then open the door to the MAN’s room.

ANGLE ON MAN, looking up.

MAN
Please, why am I here? Why won’t anyone tell me?

MASON
Sir, we just need to ask you a few questions. After that you can go home.

MAN
Why?

WIDER ANGLE ON ALL CHARACTERS

HOLLY
We think you may have some knowledge about a recent accident, and we just need to know a few things about you.

MAN
What do you mean, accident?

HOLLY
Sir, just answer the questions. Then, you can go home and just forget about all of this. Now, what’s your name?

MAN
How can you have me here if you don’t even know my name?

MASON
Please, sir, this is just protocol. Now, answer the question.

MAN
My name is Esteban Tetson.

MASON takes out a notepad and begins writing in it.

ANGLE ON MAN

MAN (CONT.)
My parents were migrant workers from Chiapas, Mexico. They changed their last names when they acquired US citizenship. Esteban means crown, and has etymological connections to English names such as Steven and Stephen.

MASON stops writing, and both HOLLY and MASON look at the MAN.

MASON
Sir, where did you receive your education?

MAN
I didn’t. My parents were very poor. I learned English mostly from the other boys my age. I didn't learn to read and write until I was a teenager.

MASON
You don't seem to be having any difficulties. You don't even have an accent.

MAN
I wouldn't know.

MASON shrugs, and starts writing again.

HOLLY
Why don't you tell us about that book?

MAN
This is my diary. I've kept it ever since I was a kid.

HOLLY
I thought you said that you didn't learn to write until you were a teenager.

MAN
I didn't.

HOLLY
But then how did you keep a diary?

MAN
You're wasting my time with this. Please, just let me go home now.

MASON
Sir, please just tell us how you kept a diary before you learned how to write.

MAN
Why won't you believe me? Have you never heard of someone keeping a diary before?

HOLLY AND MASON share a glance.

MASON
Sir, those are all the questions we needed to ask for now. I suggest you get some sleep. We'll be back tomorrow.

MAN
But…

ANGLE ON HOLLY AND MASON leaving. CLOSE ON THE MAN sitting briefly, then lying back, gripping the diary to his chest.

FADE OUT

END ACT I

-*-*-*-*-*

ACT II

FADE IN

Resume. OVERHEAD SHOT OF MAN lying down, asleep, still gripping the book. HOLLY and MASON are out in the hall, talking. MASON has a carrying case.

TWO SHOT ON HOLLY AND MASON

HOLLY
Think it's him or the book?

MASON
Dunno yet. I had the team pick up some memorabilia from Esteban Tetson's family, and ask whether he kept a diary. They didn't remember. I mean, it's been a while.

HOLLY
I hate this part.

MASON
Yeah.

HOLLY
Maybe, after this is done, we could just stay in Vienna. You know, forget this place. Move on. Find some safe and enjoyable employment in hard manual labor.

MASON
I wish that was still a joke. You know we can't.

HOLLY
Yeah.

TWO SHOT as they hug briefly, then walk over and OPEN the DOOR. At the SOUND OF IT OPENING, the MAN immediately sits up, fully awake.

WIDE ANGLE ON ALL CHARACTERS

MAN
Please, just tell me when you'll let me go. I have children.

MASON
Ah, good. That's the topic I wanted to start on.

MASON and HOLLY sit down. MASON takes out his writing utensils.

ANGLE ON MAN
MAN
What? Why do you need to know about them? Has something happened?

TWO SHOT ON MASON AND THE MAN

MASON
Nothing has happened, sir. This is just protocol. Now, please, just play along for a little bit longer.

MAN
Fine. Fine, I don't care, I just want this over quickly.

MASON
How many children do you have, and what are their names?

MAN
Two daughters. Celia and Chicha.

MASON
How old are they?

MAN
Celia is twenty, Chicha is fourteen.

MASON
And how old are you?

MAN
Forty-five. I was born in 1958, just after my parents immigrated. I was born at seven thirty-two in the afternoon on Wednesday, April twenty-seventh. There were no complications during birth, and I weighed exactly six pounds.

CLOSE ON MASON'S HAND when he stops writing. MASON and HOLLY look at the man.

MASON
Why do you do that?

MAN
Do what?

MASON
Tell us so much about yourself. You did it yesterday, when we asked for your name. And if you were poor, how do you know your exact time of birth and your weight at that time?

WIDE ANGLE OF ALL CHARACTERS, FAVORING THE MAN

MAN
Please, if you must ask me questions, don't make them like that. I'm being questioned, and I don't even know where I am. I don't feel like joking.

MASON
Can you please just answer the question?

MAN
Why should I answer the question, when it's so obvious and unnecessary?

MASON begins to speak again, but HOLLY puts a hand on his arm, and he stops.

HOLLY
We're sorry for upsetting you, but this is just protocol. We'll leave that question for later. I think that for now we have something to show you.

MASON begins unpacking the bag. He takes out a small photo album and a mirror.

MAN
How did you get that? Why do you have my photographs?

HOLLY takes the photo album from MASON, and opens it.

HOLLY
Sir, just answer our questions. After that, we'll answer yours. Now, where was this picture taken?

MAN
I was on vacation in Vienna with my family. It was hard, but I had saved enough to go. That was three years ago.

HOLLY quickly turns the page of the album, points randomly.

HOLLY
This one?

CLOSE ON PHOTOGRAPH OF UNFAMILIAR MAN, WOMAN, AND TWO GIRLS, IN FRONT OF A GARAGE.

MAN
That's us in front of the garage where I work. We took that two years ago.

HOLLY
This is you in the middle?

MAN
Yes, of course.

MASON holds up the mirror. WIDER ANGLE TO INCLUDE MIRROR. The MAN can be seen in the mirror. There is no similarity between the man in the photo and the man on the bed.

MAN
Why are you doing that?

HOLLY
Do you see any differences between the man in this photo and yourself?

MAN
No, of course not.

HOLLY
Of course.

ANGLE ON CHARACTERS

MASON
Sir, you are a teenager. Look at yourself. You are not forty-five. You are closer to fifteen. Your name is not Esteban Tetson, Esteban Tetson died while you were in elementary school. You are Jon Eois. You live with your parents, Kip and Janice. You have never been outside the United States.

MAN
I don't know why you have me here, and I will not answer any more questions until you explain what this is about. I know who I am. I know exactly who I am, and I am tired of these jokes.

MASON
I see.

TWO SHOT OF MASON AND HOLLY repacking the bag in silence, leaving the mirror. They walk to the door, but HOLLY stops and turns.

HOLLY
Do you remember how you found that diary?

The MAN does not answer. POV of the MAN watching the researchers exit, then looking back at the mirror. It shows Esteban Tetson holding the diary. CLOSE ON MIRROR.

CUT TO HALLWAY

TWO SHOT OF HOLLY AND MASON, STANDING AT THE WALL ACROSS FROM THE ROOM.

HOLLY
I think it's the book. He's too fixated on it, too illogical about it.

MASON
Just be glad he's safe to work with. We'll grab the book tomorrow, run some tests. I just want to see this thing filed and gone.

A MEDICAL GURNEY ENTERS at the far end of the hallway, being rolled by another researcher. It is steadily rolled towards HOLLY, MASON, and the camera. HOLLY AND MASON watch it approach.

HOLLY
Mason?

MASON
Yeah?

HOLLY
Why'd I have to come here to meet someone?

THE GURNEY reaches HOLLY and MASON.

MASON
Because the universe has a really weird sense of humor.

THE MAN SCREAMS from OFF SCREEN. HOLLY AND MASON jump in surprise, and run for the door. The GURNEY WHEELER does not react, and continues to move.

ANGLE ON DOOR. HOLLY OPENS IT, but the view begins to fade as soon as she does.

FADE OUT

END ACT II

-*-*-*-*-*

ACT III

FADE IN

RESUME. TWO SHOT HOLLY AND MASON ENTERING THE HALLWAY. MASON is holding a CELL PHONE.

HOLLY
It figures, doesn’t it? We finally get an easy subject, and this happens

HOLLY AND MASON stop walking outside the door.

MASON
We’re just lucky, Hol. At least we’re not on statue duty.

HOLLY shudders.

MASON (CONT.)
At least he died quickly.

HOLLY
That really isn’t very comforting.

MASON
No, I guess not. But we have to figure out how his body affected our lovely little ticket to Vienna. It’s procedure.

HOLLY
I know, honey. I’m just sick of this. Every day someone’s careless and there’s another body to deal with. It didn’t use to bother me that much, but now…

HOLLY reaches for MASON’S hand.

HOLLY (CONT.)
Now, every day I think the body’s going to be you.

MASON
I know. We shouldn’t be here anymore.

HOLLY
No choice.

MASON
I know.

THE CELLPHONE BEEPS. MASON hits a button on it.

MASON (CONT.)
He's awake. Let's go.

HOLLY AND MASON kiss, then walk to the door.

ANGLE ON MAN, looking at the door as it opens and HOLLY AND MASON ENTER.

MAN
Finally. Holly, Mason, I'm fine. I have no idea how, but I'm fine. Now can I please go home and get some rest?

WIDEN ANGLE to show all characters.

MASON
We've told you before, sir. Once we're done asking you questions, you can go.

MAN
What on earth are you talking about?

MASON
What do you-

HOLLY
Mason, how did he know our names?

HOLLY AND MASON pause.

ANGLE ON MAN

MAN
We've worked together for five years. Now stop joking around.

MASON takes out his writing pad, and begins scribbling furiously. He does not look up when he talks.

MASON
What, if anything, do you know about the men Esteban Tetson and Jon Eois?

MAN
What? Why?

MASON
Just answer the question.

MAN
I've never heard the names before. Now can you please explain what's going on here?

MASON
What about that book you're holding?

MAN
My diary? I've kept it ever since I was a kid.

MASON
You bring it to work?

MAN
Of course I do.

MASON
In spite of the restrictions on personal belongings we may bring on site?

MAN
I don't see the relevance.

MASON
No, of course not. Holly, restrain him. I want to try something.

WIDEN ANGLE

THE MAN acts surprised and confused. He attempts to defend himself, but HOLLY easily overpowers him. MASON forcefully takes the diary from him. THE MAN begins to SCREAM.

MASON (CONT.)
Put him in the bathroom and lock the door.

CAMERA FOLLOWS as HOLLY drags THE MAN to the bathroom and pushes him in, then shuts the door and presses a button on it.

MASON (CONT.)
He, or they, displayed an obsession with the book, a fear of separation from it. If I'm right, the effect should end after a bit of time alone.

CAMERA CUT TO BATHROOM, with the MAN on one side of the screen and a mirror on the other. The mirror shows the reflection of another researcher.

THE MAN begins to cough, growing steadily louder throughout the conversation. MASON AND HOLLY can be heard talking as if they were in the room.

HOLLY
Honey, I don't like this. We shouldn't do tests without approval from higher up.

MASON
That takes too long. I want to leave tomorrow. Hell, I want to leave right now. I don't want to talk to someone who believes they're a dead friend of mine. That's just too much.

THE MAN begins to pound against the door, still coughing.

HOLLY
We can't afford to be careless, not now.

MASON
I'd rather take a risk than keep hearing that thing talk.

THE MAN GASPS AND COLLAPSES. HOLLY AND MASON notice the absence of noise.

MASON (CONT.)
There. Let's go check.

THE DOOR OPENS, HOLLY AND MASON STANDING in it. MASON is holding the diary. HOLLY rushes to THE MAN'S side. She puts her hand on his chest, and her ear to his mouth.

HOLLY
No heartbeat, no breathing. He's dead.

MASON looks down at the body.

MASON
Where am I?

HOLLY turns toward MASON. The mirror shows an exact copy of JON EOIS standing above his own body, in MASON'S place. He is gripping the diary.

CAMERA CUT TO BLACK

END ACT III

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