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Person at Night with Smoke

Karma

Revenge is Best Served Cold

This is the story of a young woman named Carmen.

Karma

OPENING SCENE

EXT. CARMEN"S DRIVEWAY

The camera pans over the neighborhood, bright and peaceful. It moves over the tranquil scenes then settles on a clearly stressed Carmen, parked in her driveway. Carmen sits there, her hands gripping the steering wheel so hard, her knuckles are white.

She takes a deep breath, turns off the car and opens the car door. 


INT. INSIDE CARMEN'S HOUSE/THE LIVING ROOM

Silently, Carmen moves through the house, places her stuff down and goes to the kitchen to make herself a drink.

On the couch silently watching T.V is her long-term boyfriend, Maycio.

Carmen calmly walks up to Maycio and stands in front him, blocking the T.V. He doesn't even look up. 

CARMEN: (Takes a big gulp of wine) Maycio...


He sighs, aggravated, and looks up at her with tired eyes. Carmen sets her wine down, then suddenly straddles Maycio. She grabs his face and hair and begins to passionately kiss him. 


MAYCIO: (pushes her off) What the hell--

CARMEN: My dad is dead.


She blurts out the words, then sits in a chair...defeated. Her head hangs over the back of the chair as she stares up at the ceiling. Maycio is silent. She takes out a cigarette, lights it, and takes a long drag. 


CUTS TO BLACK

TITLE PAGE AND OPENING CREDITS

FADES IN

EXT. CARMEN'S BACKYARD


Carmen, floating in peace and quiet, gazes up at the sunlight that dances through the surface. She is weightless, she is calm, she is happy. Maycio runs to the edge of the lake, jumps in and grabs her. Carmen startled by his actions, gasps and splashes in Maycio’s arms.


CARMEN: What are you doing?

MAYCIO: Me? What are you doing?

CARMEN: Calm down, I was just going for a swim.

(She begins to exit the lake)

MAYCIO: A swim?

(They both wade out of the water)

MAYCIO: Hell of a time for a swim Carmen.


Carmen, now on land, turns around to face Maycio. She is clearly aggravated.


CARMEN: Goddammit Maycio! Right now?! You want to criticize me for fucking swimming? IT’S MY FUCKING LAKE!


She turns away from him, grabs her glass of wine, take a big gulp. She pauses mid-gulp then downs the rest of the glass.


CARMEN: Besides, we don’t have time for this…

(She reaches down and picks up her clothes)

CARMEN: We have to go to my mom’s house. 

(She heads back into the house)


Cut to Black


Cut to Maycio and Carmen driving down the highway.

Upbeat music begins to play with new scene (Karma Chameleon).


Maycio is driving and Carmen is in the passenger seat smoking a cigarette. The ride in silence.


CARMEN: Can we stop? 

MAYCIO: Why?

CARMEN: I need to use the bathroom…is that okay with you?


(Maycio ignores her)


CARMEN: Maycio?


(He still ignores her)


Carmen stares at him for a second then rolls her eyes. She sighs and continues to quietly smoke her cigarette. 


MAYCIO: (EXHALES LOUDLY) 


He lowers her window for her.


CARMEN: (sarcastically) Thanks babe, you’re so good to me.


SCENE TRANSITION


SCENE 3

EXT. In Carmen’s mom’s driveway. She lives in a modest home on the beach. 


They pull up, Maycio shuts off the engine.


MAYCIO: Can we make this as painless as possible, please?


Carmen looks at Maycio and says nothing. She grabs her purse, opens her door and gets out of the car. 


CARMEN: Yeah, I’ll try to make this as easy for you as possible. (she slams door and heads up the driveway)


Maycio sighs again, exits the car and begins to get the bags out of the truck.


INT. Carmen’s mom’s house


Carmen closes the front door behind her. She pauses when she hears the many voices coming from the dining room. Before proceeding, she takes a deep breath and puts on a big, fake smile.


CARMEN: Hello, anybody home? MOM?


She continues to follow to voices. Walking towards the dining room, as she turns the corner to the dining room, the voices fall silent. She looks into the dining room and sees a room full of people she doesn’t recognize. Then, as if on cue, all the faces look up and stare directly at her. Her mom in front doesn’t look up.


CARMEN: Hey guys…I guess I’m late. Sorry.

TEDDY: (Still not making eye-contact) Oh, don’t worry about it dear. I didn’t think you were coming. 


Carmen looks at all the unknown faces. She begins to choke up a little, but swallows the tears.


CARMEN: Yeah, I know I should have called first—

TEDDY: You didn’t have to come, dear.

CARMEN: (slightly more defensive) Of course I had to come Mother, he was my dad.

TEDDY: (COLDLY) Of course, dear. Did you bring Maycio?

CARMEN: Yes.

TEDDY: Do you guys need any help settling in?

CARMEN: Nope.

TEDDY: Perfect. (She goes back to socializing with the others)


Carmen, dismissed, nods and exits the room.


Carmen storms outside, sits on the porch steps and lights another cigarette. Maycio, still unloading the bags, begins to walk up to the door. He notices Carmen, and shakes his head,


MAYCIO: So much for this being easy. (walks inside the house)


Carmen is quiet on the outside, but inside she is screaming. In the corner of her eye she catches a glimpse of someone. She looks behind her and see her grandmother in a rocking chair on the porch.


CARMEN: (enthusiastically) Hey Granny!

GRANNY: (IGNORES HER)

Carmen stares at her over her shoulder with a silly expression on her face. 

She gets up and walks towards her Granny.


CARMEN: So you’re not talking to me? (sits in the rocking chair next to her Granny)

GRANNY: (GRUNTS)


Carmen reaches into her bag and hands her Granny a cigarette.  Her Granny hesitates for a second, then gives in a takes it. 


CARMEN: (CHUCKLES)I knew you couldn’t resist.

GRANNY: I’m still not talking to you. (Carmen lights her cigarette)

CARMEN: Ahh Granny, what did I do this time? (she stares at her with a goofy grin, prompting for her to answer)


Sensing the mood is serious, her smile fades. Carmen begins to fidget from anxiety.


CARMEN: (LOOKING AT HER FINGERS) I already know what I did. I forgot I can’t hide anything from you. 

GRANNY: No, you can’t.

CARMEN: (CLOSES HER EYES AND SIGHS)

GRANNY: Why are you here, Carmen?


Carmen opens her mouth, but no words come out. Instead a single, silent tear escapes from her eye. 


CARMEN: I had to…he was my Dad.

GRANNY: (SPITS ON THE GROUND) Leave me. I want to smoke in peace.


Carmen nods her head, gets up and walks inside the house. 


SCENE TRANSITION

SCENE 4


INT. THAT NIGHT, IN THE BATHROOM.

CARMEN IS TAKING A RELAXING BATH. HER GLASS OF RED WINE BESIDE HER.


Carmen takes a sip of wine. She takes a deep breath and slowly sinks in to the water until her chin is submerged. She closes her eyes. 

We see the glass of red wine slowly turn black.


ENTITY: (WHISPERING) …Carmen…


Carmen opens her eyes immediately. 


Standing above her is a young woman who looks just like Carmen with dark eyes, wet hair, and dark lips. Carmen stares up at the mysterious woman, confused and scared. 

Suddenly, the woman grabs Carmen’s head and pushes her head under the surface. Carmen thrashes and kicks, splashing water everywhere; but to no avail. Carmen looks up through the water at her attacker and is met with a pair of dark, cold eyes. 


CUTS TO BLACK

IN THE GUEST ROOM. THAT SAME NIGHT.CARMEN IS ASLEEP IN THE BED.


Carmen eyes burst open in fear. She is panting, gasping, looking around, trying to find something that makes sense.

She looks to her side and sees Maycio asleep next to her. She slowly begins to calm down, as her heartrate slows she relaxes and drifts off back to sleep.


FADE TO BLACK

NEXT MORNING

ITS 4PM THE NEXT AFTERNOON. CARMEN IS STILL ASLEEP. MAYCIO IS GONE.

(TEDDY KNOCKS ON DOOR)

TEDDY OPENS THE DOOR; ENTERS THE ROOM


TEDDY: Are you still alive? / Just checking to make sure you’re still alive.

CARMEN: (GROANS)

TEDDY: Right… (WALKS INSIDE THE ROOM) Well its already four in the afternoon.

CARMEN: And…

TEDDY: And dinner is at six pm. Will you be attending or are you going to continue to fester in here like a sore?

CARMEN: (TAKES A BEAT) I will be there, mother.

TEDDY: Good. Be there early to help me set up. (WALKS TOWARDS THE DOOR TO EXIT) Also, please make sure you dress nicely.

CARMEN: (STILL COMPLETELY IN BED) (GROANING) Oh god! Yes, mother! 


Teddy exits and closes the door behind her. 

Carmen buries her face in the pillow and screams.


CUT TO BLACK AS AN UPBEAT SONG STARTS TO PLAY

END SCENE 4

SCENE 5

FADE IN/ SONG SLOWLY FADES OUT


We see Carmen putting on a black dress in the mirror. She stares at herself in the mirror for a second. 

Then her phone buzzes, she sprints to grab it. Unlocks it, and we see she has been texting Maycio, but has yet to receive a response. She rolls her eyes.

As she looks at her phone…we see a black, sooty hand emerge from behind Carmen’s shoulder and caress her neck before quickly disappearing when Carmen turns her attention back to her reflection. 

She takes a deep breath and exits the room.


CUTS TO DINNER SCENE

TEDDY’S DINING ROOM TABLE IS SET TO IMPRESS. THERE’S ALREADY A FEW GUESTS MINGLING AROUND THE TABE HOLDING WINE GLASSES. 

Carmen goes into the Kitchen where an elegantly dressed Teddy is putting the finishing touches on the meal. She notices Carmen and motions her to come closer.


TEDDY: Oh, look who finally decided to grace us with her presence…Well at least you look acceptable.

She walks over to Carmen holding two platters of appetizers.

CARMEN: Have you talked to Maycio today?

TEDDY: No dear, your flighty men are not my concern. (SHE HANDS THE PLATTERS TO CARMEN, AND MOTIONS FOR HER TO SMILE)


Carmen rolls her eyes and exits to serve the guests.


FADE OUT

CUT TO DINNER