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Rated: GC · Book · Paranormal · #2089948
Two people investigate a terrifying government conspiracy involving the supernatural.
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#887112 added August 5, 2016 at 4:48pm
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Prologue & Act One
Division Six

'Two Witnesses'

By Matt Appleby



A sparse stretch of woodland, with thin trees spaced far apart. It appears to be late in the year, as the ground is covered in a thick layer of red leaves. It looks cold.

A label saying Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire appears on the bottom-left corner of the screen, in a typewriter-esque font.

An owl hoots in the distance. A unseen creatures rustles through the leaves. Otherwise, the forest is quiet and still.

A point of light appears a metre or so off the ground. It's small and dim at first, but quickly grows in both size and brightness. A low-pitched drone grows along with it, and the camera begins to shake.

The light becomes blinding as it fills the screen, and the drone becomes deafeningly loud. As both reach their crescendo, they abruptly stop. There is a profound void of darkness and silence.

There is now a man stood in the forest. He's middle-aged, wearing a lab coat over a white cardigan and black trousers. This is PROFESSOR MORTON. He looks very confused.

After a few seconds, Morton drop to his knees. He holds out his hands in front of him, staring at them in panic.

He begins to scream.

Cut to:



Most episodes of the series will have an elaborate title sequence, details of which will be determined at a later date. This pilot will simply have a picture of a brown document folder, with a red 'Classified' stamp on the front.

The words Division Six appear on the screen, again in a typewriter-esque font.

Cut to:



We are inside a police car as it speeds through the centre of a busy market town. The lights and siren are both going full tilt. The atmosphere is one of urgency.

As another label informs us, it is Twelve Hours Later.

There are two people inside the car, both uniformed officers in their early to mid '30s. The driver is PC LESLEY GRANT, who is short and round but still obviously athletic. The passenger is PC MARTIN COOPER, who is largely phyiscally unremarkable, except for a rather unimpressive attempt at a moustache.

Cut to:


The police car pulls into a small car park, next to a stretch of well-maintained parkland. The river Thames is only a few metres away, with a long line of barges and small boats moored to the tow path running alongside. The scene would be idyllic in summer, but at this time of year it just looks barren.

There is a small crowd of people in the park, all stood around something on the tow path. Cooper and Grant approach slowly. They stop by a man, ROB, lying against a tree, holding a stack of tissues against his forehead. They are soaked through with blood.

                             Are you alright, sir?

                             I'll live.

                             The paramedics are almost here.

                                       (pointing at crowd)
                             The man who assaulted you. Is he still here?


Cooper and Grant carry on towards the crowd. A few notice their approach and open a gap. This reveals the source of the commotion: Professor Morton crouched on the tow path, using a chalk to draw something we can't see. He seems even more distressed than before.

He spins round as Cooper and Grant approach.

                                       PROFESSOR MORTON
                             No! I'm not going back!

                             We're with the police. I'm PC Grant,
                                       (points at Cooper)
                             this is PC Cooper. Do you understand?

Morton stands up and begins to rub out his drawings with his foot. We still don't get to see what he was working on.

                             They'll take me back! You're not sending
                             me back!

                             What's your name? Sir?


Morton takes a swing at Grant. She dodges with no effort, and responds by pulling his arms behind his back. She pulls out a pair of handcuffs and begins putting them on.

                             I am arresting you on suspicion of
                             assault occasioning actual bodily harm,
                             and on suspicion of assaulting a
                             constable in in the execution of his
                             duty. You do not have to say anything-

Cut to:


A quick establishing shot of the local police station. It's on a quiet side street, in a building that appears to be from the early to mid 20th century, and was likely to have been repurposed from an commercial unit or suchlike. It does not look especially impressive.


Cooper and Grant are escorting Morton down the corridor towards an open cell. The corridor is painted in the anaemic white all police stations everywhere. Morton is silent, and appears to calmed down a great deal.

Grant leads Morton into the cell, then removes his handcuffs. He turns to face her.

                             You think this is enough? It won't
                             protect me. It won't even protect you.

                             We're tougher than we look.

                             No, you're not.

Grant leaves the cell and closes the door behind her. She and Cooper begin to walk away.

                             I'll call the hospital. The way he was
                             going on, we'll need a psych assessment
                             before we can get anywhere.

                             It's a Sunday. Good luck with that.

                             It's worth a try.

                             I don't know about you, Lesley, but I need
                             some lunch.

Cut to:


A town-centre gastropub, decorated in traditional country pub style. It looks comfortable but slightly characterless, as many such places tend to. Being midday on a Sunday, it's busy but not overcrowded.

Cooper is sat alone in a booth, hunched over a bucket of curly fries and a pint of orange juice. He looks content, more or less.

A woman in her late '20s enters the pub and walks over to him. She's tall, slim, dressed in a respectable skirt suit with matching bag, and has a serious expression. This is ENNIS.

                             Good afternoon.

Cooper looks up. Ennis doesn't wait for him to respond before sliding onto the bench opposite.

                             PC Martin Cooper, am I right?

                             You are indeed. How can I help?

                             My name's Ennis. I'm with the Henley
                             Echo. Can I ask you some questions?

                             This on the record?

                             I wasn't planning on it.

                             I'm eating, but...yeah, shoot.

Ennis takes out a pen and notepad from her bag. The pen appears to be a NASA souvenier.

                             A few hours ago, you arrested a man
                             assaulting passers-by. What can you
                             tell me about him?

                             Nothing beyond what you already know.
                             We're yet to determine who he is or
                             what drove his actions. Where we go next
                             is up to the Super.

                             PC Cooper, please. Don't let me leave
                             here empty-handed. There's got to be
                             something you can give me.

                             How long have you been at the Echo?

                             A few weeks. What's that got to do with

                             Listen...I admire your dedication to
                             the truth, Ms Ennis, but...
                             you got a first name?


A few seconds pass. Ennis doesn't elaborate. Eventually, Cooper grimaces a little.

                                       (to self)
                             Guess I walked right into that one.
                                       (beat)(to Ennis)
                             My point is...conserve your energy, Ms
                             Ennis. This isn't exactly Watergate.

                             Little crimes often have a way of
                             revealing bigger ones.

                             In Henley-on-Thames?

                             You know what I mean.

                             I guess.
                             The short version is, I can't give you
                             anything, because I don't know anything.
                             Call me in a day, maybe that'll change.
                             Here's a good question for you...
                                       (picks us curly fry)
                             Want a chip?

Cut to:


The waiting area of the A&E department in an NHS hospital. It has the feel of all hospital waiting areas everywhere: crowded, anodyne and faintly greasy.

Two people walk in through the main entrance. One is a tall, manic-looking man, the other a short, red-headed woman. They're both wearing dark suits and they move with purpose. They are the AGENTS FIELDS.

The receptionist, a harassed-looking man called NEIL, looks up as they approach the desk. MR AGENT FIELDS takes an ID card out of his pocket and flicks it open, far too briefly for us to read what it says.

                                       MR AGENT FIELDS
                             We're looking for Rob Brown. Where is he?

Neil taps at a keyboard under his desk. This takes some time.

                             Ward 3.
                                       (points to his left)
                             Just follow the signs.

The Agents Fields walk off without another word.

Cut to:


The Agents Fields are walking down a long corridor. It could be anywhere in the hospital, or any hospital at all.

MRS AGENT FIELDS reaches out a hand to her partner.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             Hand me your card.

Mr Agent Fields takes out his ID card and passes it to his partner. She reads it with a scowl. A brief close-up shows us why: it proclaims him a student at Exeter University.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             You're an idiot.

                                       MR AGENT FIELDS
                             I left my police ID in the car.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             What if he'd checked?

                                       MR AGENT FIELDS
                             They never do.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             No, they don't.
                                       (beat)(hands back card)
                             Get it right next time, or you're
                             doing the washing-up for the next

                                       MR AGENT FIELDS
                             That's me told.

They finally reach Rob Brown's bed. He's sat up and looking bored. He has a long stitch on his forehead and a bruise growing across half his face.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             Mr Rob Brown?

                             That's me.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             We're with the police. We need to ask
                             you some questions.

                             Again? I've already given my statement.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             The man who assaulted you...did he
                             say anything?

                             Not really. I mean, he muttered a lot.
                             Just random stuff. Not anything I
                             understood, if that's what you're asking.
                             I just assumed he was crazy.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             Thank you, Mr Brown. You've been a big help.

Mrs Agent Fields puts her hands behind her back. Mr Agent Fields begins to pull the curtains around Rob's bed.

                             Why're you doing that?

A scalpel flicks out from the end of Mrs Agent Fields' sleeve.

Cut to:


Another establishing shot of the police station. Little has changed, apart from the fact that night has fallen.

Cut to:


A tiny office, presumably inside the police station. It contains two desks placed back-to-back, two tired-looking office chairs, and a metal baseball bat propped up in one corner. The two desks are piled high with paperwork.

Cooper is sat at one of the desks, filling out one in a long series of forms. He's very obviously bored.

Grant opens the door. She's carrying a piece of paper of her own, and seems worried. Cooper looks up.

                             Did you get our guy's fingerprints

                             No. Haven't gotten that far yet.

                             Neither have I.
                                       (holds up paper)
                             But we've just been faxed this.


Grant sits down at her desk.

                             That's not the weird part. According
                             to this, our guy downstairs is...
                                       (looks at paper)
                             ...Professor Henry Morton. Taught
                             Theoretical Physics at Cambridge,
                             between 1978 and 1985. There's a photo
                             of him from '84, and he look like this...

Grant hands the paper over to Cooper. At the bottom is a photo of Morton, stood in a sunny university quad. He appears much more composed than we've seen him before, but in every other respect he is exactly the same. He doesn't look even a day younger.

Cooper stares at the photo in puzzlement.

                             Are you sure this is real?

                             I called the university myself. They
                             don't remember him, but they have his
                             records. It all checks out. They hired
                             him in '78, he left in '85. After that,
                             he dropped off the map completely.

                             Then he reappears thirty years later,
                             and he hasn't aged a day.
                             Maybe he's become a vampire.

                             He's been out in daylight.
                             Also, I fucking hope not.

                             I think it'd be interesting.

                             We get enough paperwork as it is,
                             without throwing in the undead.

                             That's a really good point.
                             So...what are we going to do?

                             We'll need to go to the Super with
                             this, obviously. We're just lowly PCs,
                             and I think Professor Morton's about
                             to cause the kinds of problems we're
                             not paid enough to handle.

Cut to:


Cooper is stood outside Morton's cell, looking in through the glass. Morton is trying to continue his drawings, but without a chalk, all he can do is trace lines on the floor with his finger. We still don't get to see what he's working on.

                                       (to self)
                             Who are you, Professor? Where did
                             you go?

Cooper briefly looks down. When he looks back, Morton is stood right up against the glass. Cooper jumps.

                             Looking Glass works. God help me,
                             it works.

                             What's Looking Glass?

                             They're coming. Run.

Cut to:


The lobby of the police station. It's bright and bland, and could belong just as easily to a low-rent dentist as to it actual occupants. At this hour, the only person here is the elderly receptionist, CAROL, who is busy working on her computer.

The Agents Fields walk in and stride over to the desk. Mr Agent Fields pulls out his ID card.

                                       MR AGENT FIELDS
                             We're with Special Branch. We're
                             here to take charge of Professor
                             Henry Morton.

Carol gestures for the ID card. Mr Agent Fields scowls and hands it over. Carol gives the card a thorough going over. A close-up reveals that it does in fact say 'Special Branch', although it lists his name as 'DCI Eli Greer'.

                             Do you have a warrant?

                                       MR AGENT FIELDS
                                       (taken aback)

Carol hands the ID card back.

                             Then you're not having him. I don't
                             care who you are: no warrant, no

Mr Agent Fields leans in close. Carol is most likely expected to flinch, but doesn't.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             Look, lady...we're Special Branch.
                             One phone call and you'll be a
                             traffic warden by the morning.

                             You can't do that.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             Watch us.

                             No, I mean you literally can't do that.
                             I'm a civilian. All you can do is get
                             me fired, and I'm too old to care.

                                       MR AGENT FIELDS
                             Your mobile phone is in your bag. It's
                             going to ring in a second. When you
                             answer, you're going to listen, and
                             then you're going to do exactly as
                             you're told.

                             I doubt that.

Right on cue, a tinny, muffled version of Nina Simone's 'Feeling Good' starts playing somewhere under the desk. Carol stares at the noise. The Agents Fields just smirk.

Carol picks up her bag, a large green thing, and rifles through it for her phone. She answers it, and is silent for a long time.

                             You could be the Queen of Sheba for
                             all the good it'll do you.
                             No, you listen to me. We've never
                             met. I've never even heard of you.
                             Your name means nothing to me. I'm
                             not going to give you anything.

Carol hangs up and throws her phone back in her bag. She glares at the Agents Fields. They look a little surprised.

                             I'll tell you again: come back
                             with a warrant, or don't come
                             back at all. Either way, leave
                             me alone.

There's a tense pause. Eventually, Mr Agent Fields takes out what looks like a car alarm beeper. Mrs Agent Fields looks at him.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS

                                       MR AGENT FIELDS
                             You got any better ideas?

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             Okay then. Let's be quick about it.

Mr Agent Fields presses his bleeper. The power suddenly cuts out: not just the lights, but everything.

                             Oh, fuck off.

Mrs Agent Fields pulls out a pistol and shoots Carol in the head. She falls off her chair in a spray of blood. The gunshot is very loud.

Cut to:


Cooper is still by Morton's cell. The lights have gone out here too.

He hears the gunshot, somewhere above. He jumps and looks up.

He heads for the stairs at the end of the corridor. His phone rings in his pocket, to the tune of Muse's 'Plug In Baby'. He stares at it, then answers.

                                       PHONE VOICE
                             Is this PC Cooper?

Cut to:


An office similar to the one shared by Cooper and Grant, although with less clutter. A man is sat at the desk facing the door, desperately hammering buttons on a large office phone. Unlike with Cooper's mobile, there's no sign that a call's getting through.

Mrs Agent Fields opens the door, and shoots the man in the back of the head before he has a chance to turn around.

Cut to:


A long corridor just outside the previous office. It could belong to any corporate building in the world. The Agents Fields start striding down, pistols at their sides and faces blank.

A door further down is slightly ajar. Mr Agent Fields kicks it open. A woman screams from inside the room, then abruptly cut off when he fires two shots. The Agents Fields carry on walking.

Grant charges out of another open door, wielding a baseball bat and screaming. She hits Mr Agent Fields across the back of the head, and he stumbles forward. She winds up for another blow, but Mrs Agent Fields shoots her in the knee. She screams and drops to the ground. The bat clatters off down the corridor.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             Hands off my husband!

Mrs Agent Fields shoots Grant in the head. Grant dies without another sound. Mr Agent Fields rubs his head.

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             You alright?

                                       MR AGENT FIELDS
                             I'll be fine.

The Agents Fields continue on.

Cut to:


A narrow staircase, presumably the one leading down to the cells. Cooper is stood halfway up, phone to his ear.

                             Who are you? What the fuck's going on?

                                       PHONE VOICE
                             There's no time for explain. You have
                             to run, and now.

                             Fuck you! I'm not leaving my friends
                             to die!

                                       PHONE VOICE
                             If you want to live, you'll have to.
                             You're up against two of the most
                             dangerous killers on the planet. You
                             can't stop them. There's nothing you
                             can do except save yourself.

                             Says you!

Cooper hangs up and runs up the rest of the stairs.

Cut to:


A tiny break room, barely large enough to hold a tea urn and two armchairs. A man, TONY, is squeezed into the corner, clutching a framed picture to his chest and sobbing.

The Agents Fields open the door. Tony looks up.


Mr Agent Fields responds by killing him. He walks over and pulls the picture out of Tony's hands. He turns it over to reveal a photo of a young girl on a swing, likely Tony's daughter, laughing at something off camera.

                                       MR AGENT FIELDS
                                       (to self)
                             Sucks to be her.

Mr Agent Fields tosses the photo back onto Tony's body.

Mrs Agent Fields looks out into the corridor. It's different from the one before, though not by much. Cooper turns a corner at the far end, then stops short. He ducks back out of sight just as she fires at him. The bullet misses. She scowls, then shrugs it off.

Cut to:


The Agents Fields approach Morton's cell. Mrs Agent Fields tries the door handle, but it doesn't open. She takes what looks like a strapless watch out of her pocket and sticks it to the door. The two Agents step back.

A series of lights circle around the watch face a few times, moving very fast, then the device explodes in a shower of sparks. The door bursts open.

Morton is sat on the bench, hands on his knees, face impassive.

                             You can't stop them. You know
                             that, right?

                                       MRS AGENT FIELDS
                             We can stop anyone.

                             They'll be the judge of that.

Cut to:


A narrow, empty alleyway. The only feature of interest is a fire escape door, currently closed. The scene is very quiet, especially after the preceeding violence.

Cooper bursts the door open, then slams it closed again behind him. He stands in the alley for a moment, resting his hands on his knees. He's breathing hard.

He screams in rage and frustration. Then he takes another deep breath, and runs off down the alley.

© Copyright 2016 Matt Appleby (UN: mattappleby at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
Matt Appleby has granted Writing.Com, its affiliates and its syndicates non-exclusive rights to display this work.
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