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The Call (in Scots Lallans.)
By Miller H Caldwell
Last edited: Sunday, March 18, 2007
Posted: Sunday, March 18, 2007



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A Fear of Death scenario for a 12 yesr old on a rites of passage journey. For all Scots expatriots to enjoy written in Lallans.


THE CALL



Short Film Screenscript

In Lallans Scots



By



Miller H Caldwell





Netherholm

Edinburgh Road

DUMFRIES
DG1 1JX

Mhcaldwell.btopenowrld.com

www.millercaldwell.org

FADE IN:

1 EXT. SCOTTISH TOWN HIGH STREET MID-MORNING 22nd SEPTEMBER 2007

 

SANDY (12) drags a stick along the wall of the street. He observes an occupied hearse coming into view proceeding stately along the High street. He freezes. He watches as the hearse passes. He reads the word MUM (CLOSE ON) in white carnations on the side of the coffin. He turns round as the hearse goes by contemplating the contents of the flower draped box. He is stupefied. He watches till the hearse is out of sight. He wipes a tear from his eye. He turns and proceeds to his home street walking slowly and contemplatively, gently tapping the stick on his hand.

 

2 INT. SAME DAY AND TOWN GROUND FLOOR FLAT. SITTING ROOM DAY

 

Elderly GAIL HANSON (87) sits reading the Daily Record by a lit fire.

She hears the postman’s delivery splatter to the hall floor, puts down her paper, picks up her stick and moves towards the edge of her chair.

 

GAIL

(v/o)

One, two, three,….. up. …….. Mair fuel fur the fire nae doot.

She slowly makes her way to the front door.

 

3 INT. HALLWAY DAY

 

GAIL

(v/o)

Ach, I wish they widnae pit they slippy leaflets through the mail.

 

She discards the mail drop items to the left with her stick. Then sees an officially marked brown envelope. She drags it with her stick to the hall wall, then props it up. She bends slowly to pick it up. She supports her back against the wall, opens the letter and reads it. She smiles. She shakes her head ruefully.

GAIL

(v/o)

Dearie me, dearie me.…..£5 o’ Cooncil Tax rebate!

 

4 EXT SCOTTISH TOWN STREET PAVEMENT SAME DAY

 

Sandy reaches his home street. He sees something lying on the road by the kerb. He approaches. It is a cat. He cautiously bends over it. His right foot nudges it. The cat is clearly dead. (Cont’d)

He uses his stick to turn the cat over. His bully classmate MALKY (13)approaches. Malky is taller and fatter than Sandy.

MALKY

Sandy! Whit are ye daen?

Leave it alane. It’s deed…….Com’on.

SANDY

Aye. It’s deed a’ right.

‘Suppose the bin man ‘ll get it.

 

Malky looks about the houses.

MALKY

Guess who’ll be deed next?

SANDY

Ah dinnae ken. (pause)

But ah suppose it micht be ma Dad.



Malky

Yir Dad? He’s nae auld.

Mair like tae be yer Mam.

She’s a drunk.



SANDY

Ma Ma drinks ‘cos ma Dad’s in hospital.

MALKY

Naw. Yir dad ‘ll be hame soon.

(pause)

Whit aboot Mr Clark at number 36?

He’s nae git lang tae gae.



SANDY

He still gaes tae football matches.




 

Malky

Malky points to a nearby house.

Thin whit aboot that auld lady at number 47?

I think she’s hawf deed onyways.



SANDY

Ah don’t see much o’ her.

Malky puts his hands on his hips. He turns to Sandy.

 

MALKY

Maybe she is deed!

Go an’ ring her bell,

thin we’ll ken.



Malky looks threateningly at Sandy.



SANDY

Didnae Malky.

I dinny want tae dae it.



Malky grabs Sandy by his collar. Their heads are inches apart.

MALKY

I’ll beat ye up.

Ye gonna do it, or no?



Sandy is terrified.

SANDY

Ok..Ok Malky, I’ll dae it.

Let me go.



Malky takes his hands off Sandy. He takes a pace back.

MALKY

Cum’oon. Thirs nuthin’ tae it.

Ring her bell.

Thin rin round tae that hedge o’er there

Hir eyesight’s nae gud.

Onyway, at that age they canna see far.



Sandy walks along the pavement. He stops and looks back at Malky.

MALKY

Go on. …..Remember?…..



Malky raises his fists as if to challenge.

Sandy starts off again and after a few more paces turns to see Malky enter a garden with a privet hedge to hide him. He looks around but no one is about. He walks more quickly to Number 47, he approaches the front door and places his finger on the doorbell.

 

5 INT GAIL’S SITTING ROOM SAME DAY

Gail turns over a page of her newspaper, the door bell rings. Gail sets off to open the door. She reaches the Hallway.

6 INT HALLWAY DAY

 

GAIL

I’m comin’… I’m comin.

She opens the door but no one is there. An approaching man (George) sees this activity.

 

 

 

 

7 EXT VIEW FROM FRONT DOOR TO MAN (GEORGE) passing by DAY

 

GEORGE, (56)

Miss Hanson, it’s dreadful whit these kids are up tae.

Nuthin tae dae wi themselves.

I ken who he is.

I’ll speak tae his mother. That is if she’s sober.

A pity they canna belt the kids these days.

They need a good hidin’.

 

 

GAIL

Ah wheesht!

This gies me some exercise.

They havnae done ony damage George.



Gail closes the front door.

8 INT SITTING ROOM LATE AFTERNOON DAY

The clock strikes three. The telephone rings beside Gail’s chair. She lifts the receiver.

GAIL

(v/0)

Hello, …speak up….Aye, Miss Hanson.

…Oh I see… Yes. Och dinnae bother.

It wis nae sae bad. Ah wisnae upset.

…Yes……Well, all right then.

Send him round. That will be fine.

Thank you. Thanks for ringin’. Bye.



 


  1. INT HALLWAY DAY
     

    Gail gets up with her stick and returns to the hallway. She takes the latch off the front door and leaves the door slightly ajar. She returns to her Sitting Room, leaving the door open.

    10 INT SITTING ROOM DAY

    She places a log on the fire and sits down. She does not have to wait long. The doorbell rings.

    GAIL

    (v/o)

    The door’s open, come in.

    I’m expectin’ ye.



  2. INT HALLWAY DAY
     

    Sheepish Sandy opens the door. He steps into the hall and looks around the stairwell. He looks apprehensive. He feels guilty. He stands still in the hall.

     

     

     

    GAIL

    (v/o)

    Weel, clase the front dair an’ cum away through.

    Ah dinnae want tae dee o’ a chill…..

    Com’on, Ah winnae bite!

    Sandy walks through the hall. He stops at the Sitting Room door and knocks twice on the wooden panel.

     

     

     

  3. INT SITTING ROOM DAY

 

GAIL

Weel, weel. So ye dae hiv some manners after a’!

In ye come. Come o’er here.

Let me see ye. Aha. Jist a wee tyke.

Sandy stands uneasily looking down. He places his left shoe on top of his right shoe. He looks at his feet.

GAIL

Well sony, whit hiv ye tae say?

SANDY

I’m sorry Miss.



GAIL

Sorry? …..Whit fur?

There is a pause. He struggles for a moment to think what to say.

SANDY

Sorry for……. ringing your bell.

Gail nods her head.

GAIL

Thin ye must hiv wanted tae visit me?

Sandy looks at Gail briefly then looks back at his awkward stance. His hands are clasped behind his back. He does not speak.

GAIL

Here, bring me twa tangerines fae the fruit bowl.

Sandy looks up and to the left, he sees the table on which the fruit bowl stands. He approaches it and takes two tangerines. He brings them to Gail.

GAIL

Here, wane’s fur you and wane’s for me.

Sit down. Hae a seat.

They peel their tangerines and delicately eat each segment in silence. Gail throws her peel into the fire. Sandy copies her. Occasionally Sandy looks up to catch Gail’s eye. She smiles at him when he does.

GAIL

So whit’s your name then?

 

SANDY

Sandy Grant

GAIL

Alexander Grant. That’s yer Sunday name.

A fine name too.

So d’yi want tae be a campanologist whin ye grow up?

Sandy draws a blank expression.

GAIL

D’yi ken whit a campanologist does Sandy? (pause)

Naw?……Weel, he rings bells.

That’s whit a campanologist does. So he dis.

It disnae pay well!

But if ye want tae dae that, well, that’s ok.



Gail laughs to herself. Sandy does not laugh but a smile begins to appear on his face as he warms to this seemingly eccentric old woman.

GAIL

Noo, I dinnae think a clever lad like you

waants tae ring bells a’ his life.

But let’s leave it there.

Ye said sorry and I ken you’ll nae dae that again.

‘Cos ye know, I’m no sae gid on my feet ye see.

Sandy looks concerned for her.

SANDY

Hiv ye sair feet?

 

GAIL

Aye Sandy, sair feet…a’ right,

(Pause) sair back, (pause)…sair leegs…

and sair eyes tae.

It’s no fun bein’ as auld as I am.

Sandy looks up at Gail.



SANDY

Whin yer auld,

is it jist that ye git slow

or is it always sair as weel?

 

GAIL

Noo Sandy. That’s a very interesting question.

Aye, sometimes aches an’ pains are uncomfortable.

An’ I canna move as quickly as I used tae,

but sometimes it’s ma heid that bothers me maist.




 

SANDY
Ye mean, like a heedache?

GAIL

Aye, in a way.

When I think o my life (pause)

Ah wis a skael cleaner, ye ken?

Then ah think o’ whit’s left o’ it……(pause)..ah..

Ye see that picture on the mantelpiece?



Sandy stands up and approaches the mantelpiece. (CLOSE ON)There is a picture of a soldier in the frame.

 

 

GAIL

Aye,

He wis ma brother, John.

..Ah’ll tell ye hin’ Sandy.

When we were your age,

John an’ I used to ring doorbells an’ run!



Gail laughs at the memory.

GAIL (Cont’d)

In those days whin we got caught,

oor father skelpt us!



Gail slaps her thigh hard.

GAIL

Oh….. it was sair.

 

Sandy smiles at Gail’s self flagellation.

 

SANDY

So yir bother’s deed?



GAIL

Aye Sandy, my briher

wis killed in France

oan 4th September 1944.

He wis only nineteen years auld.

He wis very young tae dee, wis John.

Sandy looks reflective.



SANDY
I dinnae want to die young.



GAIL
Nae wan wants tae dee Sandy.

But it comes tae us a’.

That’s why wi need tae enjoy each day,

as it micht be oor last wan!





Sandy nods his head in agreement. His bottom lip curls and he is not far from tears. He stands up and heads towards the door.

SANDY

I hiv tae be goin’.



GAIL

Well, it has been a pleasure meetin’ you Sandy.

Oh an’, I do accept your apology.

Noo, hurry home. That’s a guid lad.

Yir tea‘ll be ready soon.

Sandy leaves, unable to show his face to Gail as he passes through the Sitting Room door, the hall and then the front door closes.

 

 


  1. INT HALLWAY TWO DAYS LATER NIGHT.
     

    The front door bell rings. Gail answers the door to find Sandy on the step holding a white square letter.

    GAIL

    Who hiv we here? Ah!

    Master Sandy Grant! Come away in.

    Ah winder whit yev been up tae

    o’er the last twa days?



    Sandy follows Gail’s slow progression with her stick back into the Sitting Room. Sandy does not reply.

     

  2. INT SITTING ROOM NIGHT

 

Sandy holds out the letter. He is very sad. He speaks with a cry in his voice.

SANDY

This is fur you.

Gail takes it, retires to her fireside seat and opens the envelope, producing a card. Aware of his apparent sadness, she makes a joke.

GAIL

A bit eerly fur ma Birthday!

Gail opens the card and reads it out.

 

 

GAIL

‘Tae John. You sounded like good fun.

Sorry we never met. Love Sandy.’

(brief pause) That’s awfy sweet.

Whit a kind thought.



 

SANDY

It’s his anniversary today,

isn’t it?

GAIL

Weel, I niver!

That’s richt, 24th September,

the day he deed, in 1944.



 

Sandy looks into the fireplace. (CLOSE ON) The flames lick around the logs.



SANDY

I think we shud remember whin oor family dees,

as weel as whin we’ve oor birthdays.

 

 

GAIL

Noo, that’s a very guid idea.

Sandy, a very guid idea indeed.

 

Gail lifts her purse from the table beside her chair. She opens her purse. She produces a £5 note. She notices Sandy’s grief. She gives Sandy £5.

GAIL

Noo, noo, nae need tae get upset.

That’s jist a wee ‘thank you’ fae me.

SANDY

Thank you …..(sobs) ….Thank you.

Sandy puts the £5 in his pocket. Gail bends to give Sandy a hug. Sandy puts his arms round Gail. They cling together for a few moments.

SANDY

Miss Hanson, I hope you dinnae dee fur a very lang time.

I dinnae want you tae be going tae.



GAIL

Tae?



Tears are in his eyes. Sandy bites his lip. He sobs. He stutters out..

SANDY

The Hospice phoned last nicht…

Ma Dad died at tea time.

He hud cancer.

Gail clings to him tighter. She rocks him gently.

GAIL

Ye pair wee sowel. Ye pair wee sowl.

After a few more moments, Sandy breaks away from Gail to face her.

SANDY

Go’ny come wi me tae the funeral oan Saturday?



Gail smiles at him. She nods her head.

GAIL

‘Course I will, ma wee man. ‘Course I will.



(FADE OUT)

 

 

 

 



 

Web Site The Call - in Lallans
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Reviewed by MaryGrace Patterson
A good write. What are Lallans? My Irish grandmother always used the term ,"wee"......M
Reviewed by m j hollingshead
well done

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