MURDER, SHE WROTE:THE GRAVESTONE MURDERS a script by GN Hetherington

 

 

 

1. INT.Jessica Fletcherís House

 

 

IT IS MORNING ON A BEAUTIFUL BALMY SUMMERS DAY, THE CAMERA PANS FROM THE OCEAN INTO THE HOME OF JESSICA FLETCHER.A WINDOW IS OPEN AND A CURTAIN BLOWS GENTLY IN THE BREEZE.THERE IS SILENCE APART FROM THE TICK-TOCK OF A LARGE GRANDFATHER CLOCK.JESSICA FLETCHER IS SLUMPED IN A CHAIR, SUDDENLY THE DOOR BURSTS OPEN AND DR SETH HAZZLETT ENTERS HE IS ONE OF JESSICAíS CLOSEST FRIENDS.HE NOTICES JESSICA SITTING MOTIONLESS AND THAT SHE ISNT MOVING, HE LOOKS VERY WORRIED AS HE APPROACHES HER AND SLOWLY REACHES TOWARD HER HAND TO CHECK FOR A PULSE, AS HIS FINGERS TOUCH HER HAND SHE SUDDENLY AWAKES AND GIVES A LOUD YELL OF FRIGHT.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, Seth, you scared me half to death!

 

SETH

(Incredulous)

††††††††† I scared you, woman! Iíve been calling you all

††††††††† morning and I come in to find you sitting there,

††††††††† not movingÖ.

 

JESSICA

(Smiles)

Seth, you old fool! I must have just dozed off for a while, thatís all.

 

SETH

††††††††† Iíve known you a long time Jess and Iíve never

††††††††† known you to nap during the day.

 

JESSICA LOOKS UNSURE FOR A MOMENT AND CROSSES INTO THE KITCHEN AREA AND BUSIES HERSELF PUTTING ON A KETTLE.

 

JESSICA

(Pleasantly)

††††††††† Coffee?

 

SETH CROSSES TO HER AND PLACES A HAND ON HER SHOULDER, FOR A MOMENT THEIR EYES MEET AND JESSICAíS EYES MIST OVER, AGAIN SHE MOVES AWAY FROM HIM.

 

SETH

††††††††† You havenít been the same since coming back from

††††††††† New YorkÖ

 

JESSICA

(Firmly)

††††††††† Seth, weíve discussed this already, Iím fine, it

††††††††† was the right time to make a move, teaching

††††††††† was only meant to be a temporary thing anyway.

††††††††† Besides, I really donít get to spend enough time

†††† †††† here anymore, with my friendsÖmy gardenÖ

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, there is that, but all the same, trading

††††††††† you in for someone younger, its just plain wrong!

 

JESSICA TAKES THE KETTLE OFF THE STOVE AND POURS TWO MUGS OF COFFEE, HANDS ONE TO SETH AND THEY SETTLE DOWN AT THE KITCHEN TABLE.SETH HELPS HIMSELF TO A COOKIE.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Thatís simply not true Seth, the Dean has the

††††††††† university to think of and Jenny Raymond is THE

††††††††† leading CSI authority in the country, when

she expressed an interest in teaching a criminology course it was just too good an opportunity to pass up and really it all just comes down to money, thereís not

††††††††† enough of it to run both our classes. And with

the extra interest in Ms Raymondís field it can

only help with increased student enrollment,

and you know what Seth, truth be told, Iíd been thinking of giving up my apartment in New York and coming home anyway. Grady and Donna and little Frank moved up to Connecticut so it wasnít even as if I got to see them all the time anyway, so yes, all in all the Dean did me a great favor nudging me along!

 

SETH RAISES HIS CUP TO HER.

 

SETH

††††††††† And I for one am very grateful to him! We have

††††††††† barely seen anything of you for the last few

††††††††† years.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† There you go!(SQUEEZES HIS HAND)

 

SETH

††††††††† And youíll be able to start work on a new novel,

††††††††† itís been a while hasnít it?

 

JESSISA LOOKS OFF INTO HER STUDY WHERE A COMPUTER IS COVERED IN A DUST SHEET.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, I suppose it has, I havenít really given it

††††††††† much thought.

 

SETH

Well, you should, seems to me that every book on the best sellers list seems to be about serial killers or some such twaddle! What we need is a good old-fashioned whodunit!

 

SETH WINCES AS HE REALISES WHAT HE SAID, JESSICA AGAIN LOOKS OFF.

 

††††††††† Iím sorry, Jess, I didnít mean to say that your

††††††††† books where old fashioned or anythingÖ

 

JESSICA

Why not? The critic from the New York Post did didnít he? Perhaps heís right; maybe my books are Ďrelics of a more innocent and naÔve time.í

 

SETH

††††††††† Pah! Who cares what the conceited ass thinks,

††††††††† class is class is class, Jess.Why else do

††††††††† people still read Agatha Christie? Iíll tell

††††††††† you, for the same reason that in 100 years they

††††††††† will still be reading your books, good stories

††††††††† are good stories no matter what the modern

††††††††† style is.

 

JESSICA APPEARS TO BE ON THE BRINK OF TEARS.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, Seth, youíre very sweet.

 

SETH STARES AT HER WITH GREAT CONCERN.

 

SETH

††††††††† Howís about we take a walk into town? Everyoneís

dying to see you, itís been a long time, you know.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, I know, Seth.Iím looking forward to

††††††††† catching up with everyone too, but maybe in a day

††††††††† or two when Iíve caught up with everything hereÖ

 

SETH

Jess, youíve been back home for nearly a week now and yet you havenít even ventured outside.Now,

tell me woman, whatís so pressing that canít wait, eh? Come with me, come see your friends, itíll make you feel better I promise.

 

JESSICA GETS UP AND BEGINS PACING THE KITCHEN, SETH LOOKS CONCERNED AND ALSO GETS UP, HE SLOWS HER DOWN BY GENTLY PLACING HIS HANDS ON HER SHOULDERS.

 

††††††††† Now, come on Jess, whatís going on?

 

JESSICA SUDDENLY BEGINS SOBBING INTO HIS CHEST; SETH PULLS HER CLOSE AND PATS HER BACK.

 

  1. EXT.A PATH TOWARDS CABOT COVE.DAY

 

JESSICA AND SETH ARE WALKING ALONG A COASTAL PATH TOWARDS CABOT COVE TOWN LINKING ARMS.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Iím sorry about that Seth, I donít know what

††††††††† came over me.

 

SETH

††††††††† Jessica Fletcher, Iíve known you for more years

††††††††† than probably either of us cares to admit and

††††††††† I can honestly say I can count the number of

††††††††† times Iíve seen you break down on one hand, now

††††††††† whatís this all about?I knew the second I met ††††

††††††††† you off the bus from New York that something

††††††††† wasnít right, I sensed it last Christmas when

††††††††† you came back from that meeting with your

††††††††† publishers.Talk to me Jess, you have to know

††††††††† by now that nothing you can say to me is ever

††††††††† going to make me think bad of you, or that youíre

silly or an old fool or anything crazy like that.Youíre probably the most rational woman I know, so come on woman, out with it, stupidity and all!

 

JESSICA LETS OUT A LOUD, RAUCOUS LAUGH AND HUGS SETH TIGHTLY.

 

JESSICA

Golly, it does feel good to laugh!Oh, I do love you, you old fool!††††††††

 

SETH

††††††††† And the feeling is more than reciprocated, now

††††††††† talk to me, Iím not only your friend, Iím your

††††††††† doctor.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I wouldnít know where to begin.I agree with

††††††††† everything you said, Seth.I AM rational, Iíve

††††††††† always prided myself on that.When the dean came

††††††††† to me and said that having the new lecturer was

††††††††† a great result for the college I knew he was

††††††††† right, but I couldnít help what I felt.

 

SETH

††††††††† And that was?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† The same feeling when Hartley Publishers where

††††††††† taken over and my new editor said that my last

††††††††† book needed a little ĎC.S.I.ingí for modern

††††††††† audiences.I had no idea what that meant, all I

††††††††† know is that I write what I write because it ††

††††††††† comes from within me, my lectures where much the

††††††††† same, I taught what I knew and for the longest

††††††††† of times I think Iíve been spoilt because

††††††††† everyone has told me that my books are thrilling

††††††††† and that my lectures are wonderful - to go from

††††††††† that to being told that, well, being told that

††††††††† Iím, IímÖ

 

SETH

††††††††† Old?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Seth!

 

SETH

††††††††† Long in the tooth? Over the hill? One foot in the

††††††††† grave? Jess, weíre all of those things and more!

††††††††† But so what, I for one love being long in the

††††††††† tooth!

 

JESSICA REGARDS HIM AND THEN SUDDENLY BURTS INTO LAUGHTER.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, Seth! You are wonderful! You do have a knack

††††††††† for making everything seem better.Thatís why

††††††††† Iíve been staying at home, I figured I just had

††††††††† to get to grips with these irrational feelings

††††††††† that I have.

 

SETH

††††††††† And have you?

 

JESSICA

(pauses)

††††††††† Do you know something Seth, the Dean, my editor,

††††††††† what they said made me feel old and I guess you

††††††††† could say it shocked me, I havenít really felt

††††††††† old before, truthfully, I havenít.For the first

††††††††† time I felt like an old woman, no longer in

vogue so to speak or that I had anything good or real or relevant to say and I hate it! I really, really hate it! Because the truth is I donít feel any different, inside Iím still the same I always have been.I mean, sure, I look in the mirror some mornings and I donít even know the woman looking back at me, or I do some gardening and it takes me a day to recover! All of that is fine because I still feel the same inside, I still feel young, I still feel vitalÖ

 

THERE IS A LONG PAUSE AS THEY CONTINUE WALKING.

 

††††††††† And then I get a double whammy and it knocks me

††††††††† of my feet, I get up late, I sleep during the

††††††††† day, I canít face my friendsÖ (TRAILS OFF)

 

SETH

††††††††† Itís called depression, Jess.And itís perfectly

††††††††† natural and it happens to us all.

 

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, Seth, I donít think Iíve been depressed a day

††††††††† in my life, even when Frank died and I thought

I would die too; I still managed to go ON.I got up; I moved around, I got ON. But now, what do I do? Nothing, because when the truth is told I just donít feel like I have a place anymore, it feels like life is for the young!

 

SETH

††††††††† Oh, Jessica, that is singularly the most stupid

††††††††† piece of nonsense Iíve heard in a long time!

††††††††† The young, the old, we all have our place in

††††††††† this life and we all need each other to

††††††††† get through it, you must see that! Thatís why

††††††††† you went back to teaching after all those years,

††††††††† because the kids needed you, just as much as you

††††††††† needed them.To share what you know, to share

††††††††† life, it's what we all need, people to share

††††††††† things with.Just because some fool says that

††††††††† youíre out of date doesnít make it true.Why do

††††††††† you think I fight so hard not to retire?

††††††††† The hospital has a new whippersnapper doctor who

††††††††† keeps trying to muscle me out and I tell you

††††††††† one thing, Jess.Iím not going without a

††††††††† fight! I deserve my place in this world

††††††††† just as much as anyone else, and just because

††††††††† he knows all the latest tricks doesnít make

him better than me, I know what I know just as you know what you know, nobody can take that away from us and whether they admit it or not, they still need us, everyone still needs us.Theyíll realize what theyíve done to you Jess and theyíll regret it, you mark my words!

 

THEY LAPSE INTO SILENCE.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† You didnít tell me about the hospital getting a

††††††††† new doctor.

 

SETH

††††††††† I figured you had things of your own on your

††††††††† mind, didnít want to add to it with my tales of

††††††††† woe!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, Seth, I havenít really been a very good

††††††††† friend to you lately have I? I canít tell you

††††††††† how sorry I am about that, but I promise that

††††††††† from now on Iím going to be good.Things ARE

††††††††† going to be better.

 

SETH

††††††††† Thatís my girl! What you need to do is throw

††††††††† yourself into something, a new book, a new

††††††††† project, just something to sink your teeth into.

†††††††††

JESSICA

††††††††† Youíre probably right Seth, sitting feeling

††††††††† sorry for myself isnít getting me anywhere!

†††††††††

††††††††††††††††† SETH

††††††††† Wait a minute, I have an idea, and gosh darn

††††††††† if it isnít perfect for you! Come on Jess, Iíll

††††††††† introduce you to the new proprietor of the Cabot

††††††††† Cove Gazette!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh yes, Eve Simpson wrote me about Ebenezer

Mullenís death, I was sad to hear that he

††††††††† died, not that I knew him well at all.

 

SETH

††††††††† Ayah, I was his doctor for 35 years and I canít

††††††††† say I knew him either.Funny family the

††††††††† Mullenís, something in the genes if you ask me.

 

JESSICA PAUSES TO CONSIDER THIS.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, I suppose thereís something in that, Iím

††††††††† trying to remember, Ebenezer never married but

††††††††† he had a brother, yes?

 

SETH

He did, William, though he left Cabot Cove at the first opportunity to be some hot shot senator in Washington.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Of course, thatís right! I met him once or twice

††††††††† at some State functions, very powerful man if I

††††††††† recall correctly.Very firm, very focused.

 

SETH

††††††††† A horseís ass by all accounts!

 

JESSICA

(laughs)

††††††††† Oh, Seth! There was a wife and child too I seem

††††††††† to remember, a delicate girl, a ballerina?

 

SETH

††††††††† Youíre like an elephant woman! Ayah, Katrina,

††††††††† beautiful little thing, there was a time that

††††††††† she was stepping out with Ebenezer and everyone

††††††††† thought she would marry him, but in swoops

††††††††† William and sweeps her off her feet.I donít

††††††††† think the brothers ever spoke again.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh itís tragic when things like that happen,

††††††††† Sometimes I just donít understand why

††††††††† families do what they do to each otherÖ

††††††††† Iím racking my brains but canít think what

††††††††† happened to Katrina and the child, I donít

††††††††† really recall them very well at all.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well they left Cabot Cove with William and

††††††††† settled in Washington, I seem to remember

††††††††† hearing that Katrina died ten years or so

††††††††† ago, cancer, I believe.

 

JESSICA

Oh how sad. She was so very fragile looking though wasnít she? So, what happened to the

Gazette after Ebenezerís death?

 

SETH

††††††††† He left it to his nephew, Noah, which I

suppose came as a complete surprise to the

young fellow as I donít think they knew

each other at all, still, credit where credits

due, Noah came straight to Cabot Cove and seems

to want to do the right thing by his uncle, seems

to me heís a good kid but heís over his

††††††††† head, and that my dear, is where you come in!

 

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Where I come in? What do you mean, Seth? What

††††††††† have I got to do with any of this?

 

THEY STOP WALKING AND SETH TAKES A HOLD OF HER HAND.

 

SETH

††††††††† Itís just what weíve been talking about, Jess,

††††††††† some youngíun needs help from someone a bit wiser

††††††††† and a bit older, and you, my dear, need help†††

††††††††† from someone a bit younger and a bit less wiser.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, Seth, what are you talking about!

 

SETH

††††††††† Itís called therapy Mrs. Fletcher, and itís what

††††††††† I prescribe as your doctor! Now come on, at the

††††††††† very least let me introduce you to the boy, I

††††††††† get the impression that heís not had the best

††††††††† of lives stuck down there in Washington with

††††††††† that power hungry father of his.A nice friendly

††††††††† face will probably restore some faith in human

††††††††† nature for him.

 

JESSICA

(laughs)

††††††††† Seth Hazlitt, you donít play fair! Ok, letís go,

††††††††† but Iím not promising anything.

 

THEY CONTINUE WALKING, SETH TAKES HER ARM AND LINKS IT THROUGH HIS, A WRY SMILE ON HIS FACE

†††††††††

SETH

††††††††† I wouldnít have it any other way.

 

  1. INT.THE OFFICE OF THE CABOT COVE GAZETTE

 

THE SCENE IS A BUSY OFFICE WITH LOTS OF PAPERS AND BOXES EVERYWHERE.AMONGST THE CHAOS IS NOAH MULLEN, 23, A BLOND FLOPPY HAIRED TALL THIN MAN.HE APPEARS TO BE IN A STATE OF PANIC, FAX MACHINES ARE WHIRRING AND PHONES RING CONTINUOUSLY.NOAH LOOKS AT A WALL CLOCK, SIGHS AND PICKS UP A PHONE.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Hullo, Cabot Cove Gazette, Noah Mullen speaking,

††††††††† how can I help you? (PAUSESÖSLOWLY) Oh, Hi Mr.

††††††††† Williams. No, I didnít realize the time. Oh gosh

††††††††† I complete forgot about the 2 oíclock deadline

††††††††† for printingÖwell, as it happens Iím almost

††††††††† finished, couldnít you, I mean, couldnít you

††††††††† possibly, just this once give me say, 2 more

hours? I knowÖ I understand that Mr. Williams, itís just that Iíve found it a little difficult to get to grips with some of my late uncleís

††††††††† systems.Yes, of course you knew him for a long

††††††††† time and he surely did have his own way of doing

††††††††† things! You will? Oh Mr. Williams, thatís

††††††††† fantastic and I promise that next week wonít be

††††††††† a problem, 4 oíclock it is then, thank you!

 

HE HANGS UP THE PHONE AND TAKES IT OFF THE HOOK, HE SINKS DEEPLY INTO THE CHAIR AND DROPS HIS HEAD ONTO THE TABLE AND BANGS IT A FEW TIMES.THE DOOR OPENS AND JESSICA AND SETH SWEEP IN, JESSICA SMILES SADLY AS SHE SEES HIS DISPONDANCY AND THE STATE OF THE OFFICE.

 

SETH

(COUGHS)

††††††††† Ah, Noah!

 

NOAH LEEPS TO HIS FEET.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Dr Hazlitt, what a surprise!

 

SETH

††††††††† Good to see you again, young fellow.Look here,

††††††††† Iíve brought someone to meet you, this isÖ

 

NOAH

††††††††† JB Fletcher! Oh my God, Iíve been DYING to meet

††††††††† you, Iím such a fan of your work, I canít tell

††††††††† you how much of an honor it is to meet you,

††††††††† oh listen to me, gushing like an idiot.Iím

††††††††† Noah, Mrs. Fletcher, Noah Mullen.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, itís a pleasure to meet you, Noah.I was

††††††††† so sorry to hear about your uncle.

 

NOAH RUNS HIS HAND THROUGH HIS HAIR NERVOUSLY.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Thanks Mrs. Fletcher, but truth is I donít really

††††††††† remember him.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Iím sorry to hear that, but from what I remember

††††††††† of him, he was a fine man, full of what you would

††††††††† call character!

 

NOAH LOOKS AROUND NERVOUSLY.

 

NOAH

Yes, I've more or less heard that about old Ebenezer!Oh dear, Iíd love to offer you a

coffee or something but as you can see, I havenít

really had a chance to get organized here yet!

 

SETH LOOKS AROUND AND RAISES HIS EYEBROWS.

 

SETH

Yes, we can see that.

 

JESSICA GIVES SETH A SCOLDING LOOK.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Donít you have any help here Noah?

 

NOAH

(GLUMLY)

††††††††† No.I guess my uncle wasnít too good with the

††††††††† Books judging from the pile of unpaid bills he

††††††††† Left! And it seems to me that with the profit†††††††††††† each issue makes there isnít really a lot left

††††††††† over to employ any staff or anything like that.

 

JESSICA MUSES AS SHE LOOKS AROUND

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, Ebenezer did rather like it to be a one

††††††††† man show. But he did have a lot of experienceÖ

 

NOAH

††††††††† Whereas I have ZIP, NADA! A degree in English Lit

††††††††† is about my lot but you know I thought I would

††††††††† give it a go, as I said, I didnít really know my

††††††††† uncle but its pretty obvious he gave a damn

††††††††† about the gazette so I didnít just want to close

††††††††† it down and box everything upÖbut then again,

††††††††† maybe I should have rather than run it into the

††††††††† ground!

 

JESSICA AND SETH EXCHANGE PITYING GLANCES. SETH LOOKS AT THE CLOCK AND THEN WINKS AT JESSICA.

 

SETH

††††††††† Say, I have a bit of free time before I have

††††††††† to get back to my rounds, maybe you could use

††††††††† an extra hand.Jess?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, yes I donít have anything pressing either.

††††††††† If we wouldnít be in the way Noah, consider us

††††††††† to be 2 eager volunteers!

 

NOAH

††††††††† Oh my God! Youíre not serious! That is fantastic

††††††††† and it couldnít come at a better time.I have 2

††††††††† hours to get his baby to bed if Iím to stand any

††††††††† chance of getting my first issue out!

†††††††††

JESSICA

††††††††† Well then weíd better get moving!

 

  1. INT.SAME OFFICE SEVERAL HOURS LATER.

 

THE OFFICE IS MUCH CALMER. SETH IS SITTING IN A CHAIR COMFORTABLY SNORING.JESSICA IS READING THE COMPLETED NEWSPAPER WHILE NOAH WAITS ANXIOUSLY FOR HER TO FINISH.AT LAST SHE DOES, SHE REMAINS SILENT AS SHE FOLDS IT UP AND PUTS IT DOWN, SHE TURNS AND FACES NOAH.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well? Oh you hate it donít you, I knew you would!

††††††††† Oh my God the townís going to hate it tooÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Relax Noah, I think its wonderful, really I do.

††††††††† Youíve managed to keep the spirit of Ebenezerís

††††††††† Gazette but given it a bit of a punch in the arm.

 

NOAH

††††††††† I just had a few ideas for updating it.Too

††††††††† much?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh not at all, just enough, believe me, people

††††††††† from small towns donít like change but thatís

††††††††† not to say we shouldnít give them a little nudge

††††††††† now and again.Tell me Noah, what is your vision

††††††††† for the Gazette?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well, like you said, itís the townís only paper

††††††††† so its only right that it should be about Cabot

††††††††† Cove, its people, the events, that sort of thing,

††††††††† but thereís a whole other world out there and

††††††††† it should be about that, whether its whatís going

†††† †††† on in the next town or New York or even further.

††††††††† Iím thinking news, CD reviews, theatre reviews,

†††††††††

 

JESSICA

(CHUCKLES)

††††††††† Well, youíre certainly ambitious!

 

NOAH

††††††††† Do you think I could do it?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh I do Noah, have a little faith in yourself ††††††††††† and it will do you wonders, trust me.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well faith in me isnít something Iím used to †††††††††††† to having or receiving for that matterÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And you know, I was thinking about your financial

††††††††† Problems, I cant rememember the last time the

††††††††† Gazette went up in price and while Iím no

††††††††† financial expert it seems to me that even a

††††††††† slight increase in cost could make all the

††††††††† difference.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Do you really think so?

 

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I certainly do, and Noah, I want you to know that

††††††††† Iím here to help, not just for today, for

††††††††† whatever and whenever you need it, ok?

 

NOAH

(CHOKED)

††††††††† Oh you donít know how much that means to me

††††††††† Mrs. Fletcher, I thought I was drowning here and

††††††††† then in walks an angel!

 

JESSICA LOOKS AROUND FLUSTERED.

 

††††††††† And you know, seeing as you how youíre in such††††††††††† a generous mood, I did have another thoughtÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well, its just that I want the Gazette to be

††††††††† relevant.Just because itís a small town doesnít

††††††††† mean it has to be a small newspaper, you know?

††††††††† And that got me to thinking, I mean, we have our †††††††† †††† own master author right here in town and I

††††††††† thought wouldnít it be great if we could maybe

††††††††† have a series of new short stories or perhaps

††††††††† a serialization by the world famous author

††††††††† JB Fletcher!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh I donít know, that seemsÖ

 

NOAH

††††††††† I realize its an imposition and I shouldnít

††††††††† really of asked, youíre probably in the middle

††††††††† of your next book.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, no, not reallyÖ

 

NOAH

††††††††† You know what I had imagined?A series of short††††††††† †††† stories with a sort of thread running through

††††††††† them, all held together by that great raconteur

††††††††† inspector Armand of yours, Iíve loved him ever

††††††††† since he appeared in The Umbrella Murders. He

††††††††† always seemed slow and deliberate to me but †††

††††††††† razor sharp!

 

JESSICA

(SMILES)

††††††††† Yes, he was one of my favorites too!

 

NOAH

††††††††† He was always observing and it occurred to me

††††††††† that would lend itself great to a series of

††††††††† stories, Inspector Armand observing the comings

††††††††† and goings of everyday folks and with your

††††††††† knack for intrigue thereís no end to the scrapes††††

††††††††† he could get into! The readers would love it!

 

JESSICA

(LOOKS FLATTERED)

††††††††† Well, it certainly sounds interestingÖ

††††

NOAH

††††††††† As I said, I shouldnít of even mentioned itÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† WellÖ I mean, I couldnít promise anything

††††††††† but maybe I could give it some thought and

††††††††† see what happens.

 

NOAH

††††††††† You would do that for me? See what I was ††††††

††††††††† saying about angels!

 

JESSICA NODS, SHE LOOKS OVER AT SETH.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Iíd better wake Seth up before he misses

††††††††† his rounds.You know Noah, I bet you havenít

††††††††† had a home cooked meal in some time.

 

NOAH

(LAUGHS)

††††††††† You have no idea how long!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well in that case you must come to my house

††††††††† tonight for a good old traditional Cabot Cove

††††††††† welcome, albeit a little late! Though I do say

††††††††† so myself, my corn chowder is quite famous

††††††††† in these parts! (WINKS)

 

NOAH

††††††††† Wow, that would be great.

†††††††††

JESSICA

††††††††† Good, shall we say 8?

 

NOAH

††††††††† 8 it is!

 

JESSICA SMILES AND GETS UP, AS SHE TURNS HER BACK TO NOAH SHE SEES THAT SETH WAS NOT REALLY ASLEEP, HE SMILES AT HER KNOWINGLY, SHE SHAKES HER HEAD IN A MOCK ĖANGRY FASHION.

 

  1. INT.JB FLETCHERS KITCHEN.NIGHT

 

NOAH FINISHES EATING AND PUSHES HIS PLATE AWAY, HE BLOWS A LOUD KISS WITH HIS FINGERS, JESSICA LOOKS VERY PLEASED.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Belisimo! My compliments to the chef!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, go on! Its just something I threw together

††††††††† at the last moment.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well I wish I could throw something together

††††††††† that tasted like that! Thank you Mrs. Fletcher.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Its my pleasure Noah, and please, you must start

††††††††† calling me Jessica.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Ok, thank you Jessica.It really was wonderful

††††††††† though, you might say that Iím not really the ††††††††††† best cook in the world, I never really had to be.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† You parents were good cooks?

 

NOAH

(LAUGHS)

†††† †††† Not even close! I donít even think they ever set

††††††††† foot inside the kitchen, momÖwell, I guess mom

††††††††† was always worried about putting on that extra

††††††††† pound (BEAT) still though I had a great

††††††††† housekeeper, May, who was just the best thing

††††††††† ever and boy could she cook!

†††††††††

JESSICA

††††††††† She sounds lovely.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Oh she was, still is, you could say she raised

††††††††† me and when I went off to college she left with

††††††††† me.I have an apartment in New York, she lives

††††††††† next door!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, that sounds lovely!

 

NOAH

(BITTERLY)

††††††††† Yeah, you cant say my father wasnít generous to

††††††††† usÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Noah, you sound so cold.Things couldnít of been

††††††††† so bad, surely?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Oh couldnít they? You could say that my father †††††††††† wasnít really the paternal type.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† But a good man I understand? I believe he does

††††††††† some great things on Capital Hill?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Does he? Iím sure he does.Tell me Jessica, did

††††††††† you ever read his biography? I merit 2 sentences,

††††††††† something along the lines of Ďmy son went off

††††††††† to study literature at Columbia.í Thatís it,

††††††††† thatís me. Twenty-three years of me.

 

THEY LAPSE INTO SILENCE.JESSICA REFILLS THE WINE GLASSES.A CLOCK TICKS.

 

††††††††† Oh, Iím sorry Jessica, I didnít mean for that to

††††††††† happen.I must sound terribly bitter and the

††††††††† truth is Iím not, Iím really not. I realize how

††††††††† much worse many people had it than me, Iím not

††††††††† just some rich kid whining poor me.

 

JESSICA PATS HIS HAND.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I know that Noah, I didnít think that for a

††††††††† second.†† Even with a privileged life we all

††††††††† have things we just try our best to survive.

††††††††† Tell me, is there nobody special in your life?

 

NOAH

††††††††† There was, at college, but it ended...badly

††††††††† and I guess the saying once bitten twice shy

††††††††† is kinda accurate!

 

JESSICA

(LAUGHS)

††††††††† Oh so young and so jaded!

 

NOAH

††††††††† Iím not young Jessica, Iím 23! Besides, I have

††††††††† the Gazette to keep me busy and for the first

††††††††† time it feels like I have a purpose, something

††††††††† to work towards.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, there is that, but promise me something,

††††††††† donít give up on love altogether will you?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Weíll see! So, moving on quickly, thank you

††††††††† again Jessica for a wonderful welcome to

††††††††† Cabot Cove! Now, shall we make a start on the

††††††††† next edition of the Gazette?

 

JESSICA NODS HER AGREEMENT.

 

  1. EXT. CABOT COVE TOWN OUTSIDE GENERAL STORES.

 

NOAH IS PACING OUTSIDE THE STORE AS PEOPLE ARE COMING OUT READING THE GAZETTE, THEY ALL SEEM PLEASED AS THEY NOD AT HIM.JESSICA COMES AROUND THE CORNER, AS SHE SEES HIM WAITING ANXIOUSLY SHE LAUGHS.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Noah, I had a feeling youíd be camped out here!

 

HE WALKS OVER AND KISSES HER.

 

NOAH

††††††††† I couldnít resist, I had to see how it was

††††††††† selling.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well, touch wood, it all seems ok, I mean thereís

††††††††† been nobody trying to lynch me or anything!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Of course not, I have to congratulate you again,

††††††††† the new Cabot Cove Gazette is a triumph, its

††††††††† bright, its literate, its exactly the type of

††††††††† newspaper I want dropping on my mat.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Thank you Jessica, and speaking of triumphs,

I just finished reading the first part of the Inspector Armand series; itís wonderful, so full of suspense! I cant wait for the rest!

 

JESSICA

Oh donít, Iíd almost forgotten about the joy

of deadlines!

 

THEY BOTH LAUGH.JUST THEN SHERIFF MORT METZGER APPEARS AND APPROACHES THEM.

 

MORT

††††††††† Good morning folks.Noah, Mrs. F.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Hi there Sheriff.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Hello Mort.

 

MORT

††††††††† Just been reading the new Gazette Noah, great

††††††††† job, mind you, could of done without that piece

††††††††† about Mack Anderson.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Sorry about that, SheriffÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort, Noah would be remiss if he didnít report on

††††††††† the upcoming elections for Sheriff, you know

††††††††† that.Besides, I donít think you have anything

††††††††† to worry about, I donít think any of us could

††††††††† imagine not having you as Sheriff.

 

MORT

††††††††† Well thatís good of you to say Mrs. F, but youíve ††††††† been away for a while, the word on the street is

††††††††† that Anderson is saying and doing all the right

††††††††† things.

 

JESSICA

I canít believe people think that, I havenít even met him yet so I canít really comment.

 

MORT

††††††††† Pah! All teeth and fake tan, not to mention

††††††††† making idle promises that he has no way of

††††††††† keeping!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort, you mustnít underestimate the people of

††††††††† this town, weíre not easily taken in!

 

MORT

††††††††† Thatís what I used to think but Iím not so sure

††††††††† anymore what with Seth practically being run out

††††††††† of the hospital.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† How is Seth? I havenít seen him for a few days?

††††††††† It seems as if heís always on duty.

 

MORT

††††††††† Heís scared not to be! Everytime he goes of duty

††††††††† it seems the new Doc, Eli Cassidy, implements

††††††††† changes or steals some of the Docs patients.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, Iím sure it cant be that bad!

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well I was over there yesterday to do a feature

††††††††† for next weeks paper and lets just say, thereís

††††††††† no mutual appreciation going on and Dr Cassidy,

††††††††† well, he may be bright and know his stuff but

††††††††† heís no Dr Hazlitt.

 

MORTíS CELL PHONE BEGINS RINGING.

 

MORT

††††††††† Excuse me.Hello, Sheriff Metzger.Oh Hi Andy,

††††††††† Whatís up? What do you mean a body? At the

††††††††† Hill House?Yes, heís here with me.Who? Are

††††††††† you sure Andy? Have you called the doc?Ok,

††††††††† weíll be there in 10 minutes.

 

HE HANGS UP THE PHONE AND LOOKS ANXIOUS.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Is everything ok Mort?

 

MORT

††††††††† Not really, Noah, Iím sorry to tell you this but

††††††††† thereís been an accident at the Hill House Motel.

 

NOAH

(PUZZLED)

††††††††† Why would you be sorry to tell me Sheriff?

 

MORT

††††††††† Its your father Noah.

 

NOAH

††††††††† My father what are you talking about? Heís not

††††††††† at the Hill House, heís in Washington.

 

MORT

††††††††† Are you sure about that?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well, of courseÖ I mean, Iím as sure as I can

††††††††† be, I mean what would my father be doing at the

††††††††† Hill House motel without telling me?

 

MORT

††††††††† Well they checked his credit card and Andy found††††

††††††††† his driversí license.

 

NOAH

††††††††† What do you mean found his driving license?

Whereís my father sheriff, whatís happened to him?

 

MORT

††††††††† Iím really sorry to tell you this son, but your

††††††††† father is dead.

 

JESSICA GASPS AND PULLS A DAZED NOAH TOWARDS HER.

 

  1. INT.HILL HOUSE HOTEL ROOM.DAY

 

THE SCENE BEGINS WITH SEVERAL MEN IN WHITE COVERALLS EXAMINING THE ROOM, DEPUTY SHERRIFF ANDY BROOM IS TALKING INTENTLY TO DR ELI CASSIDY AS THEY LOOK UP AT THE SWINGING BODY.CASSIDY, A SLENDER MAN WITH PROMINENT FEATURES MOTIONS TO A PALE FACED YOUTH WITH CLOSE CROPPED HAIR.

 

ELI

†††† †††† Josh, I think weíve seen all we can see here,

††††††††† I suggest you take the body to the morgue now.

 

JOSH

(NERVOUS, ANXIOUS)

††††††††† Are you sure? IÖ I mean the sheriff hasnít

††††††††† examined the body yet or anything.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Thatís right Dr Cassidy, I cant let you move

††††††††† the body at least until the sheriff has had a

††††††††† chance to look.

 

ELI LOOKS IMPATIENTLY AT HIS WATCH AND TUTS LOUDLY.

 

ELI

††††††††† Well where on earth is he? Its not like weíre

††††††††† in some big town and heís stuck in traffic!

 

JUST THEN THE SHERRIFF RUSHES IN, HOT ON HIS HEELS ARE JESSICA AND NOAH, JESSICA IS DISMAYED WHEN SHE SEES THE BODY AND TRIES TO STOP NOAH FROM COMING IN BUT HE PUSHES PAST HER.HE STOPS DEAD AT THE FEET OF HIS FATHER AND STARES IN SHOCK.

 

MORT

††††††††† Noah, you might want to wait outside, you donít

††††††††† want to see your father like this.

 

ELI

(RAISES HIS EYEBROWS)

††††††††† Ah, so we can confirm identity.Good, Josh,

††††††††† you can take the body now.

†††††††††

MORT

††††††††† Woh! Lets just slow down here Dr Cassidy, I

††††††††† havenít had a chance to look around yet.

 

ELI

††††††††† Whatís to look at? Weíve taken photos and its

††††††††† pretty obvious the fellow hung himself now the

††††††††† sooner we cut him down and get him back to the

††††††††† hospital morgue and I can do the PM and we can

††††††††† all get on with our days.

 

MORT APPROACHES HIM AND LEANS IN CLOSE AND WHISPERS IN A HISS.

 

MORT

††††††††† This here is the mans son, a little compassion

††††††††† wouldnít go amiss.

 

ELI

(REGARDS NOAH COLDY)

††††††††† Well, Iím sorry for your loss.

 

JESSICA MOVES OVER TO NOAH AND PUTS HER ARM AROUND HIM.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Iím so terribly sorry, Noah

††††

NOAH

(SOFTLY)

 

††††††††† Thank you Jessica, I cant believeÖ

 

ELI

(INTERUPTING)

††††††††† Jessica? Youíre Jessica Fletcher?Iíve been

††††††††† wanting to meet you.Iím Eli Cassidy, Cabot

††††††††† Coveís new doctor!

 

JESSICA

(COLDLY)

††††††††† Oh, I was under the impression we already had

††††††††† one of those.

 

††††††††† ELI

††††††††† Ah, Old Doc Hazlitt you mean. Well the old fellow

††††††††† canít go on forever you know, mistakes happen

††††††††† so easily when physicians donít know when to

††††††††† retire.

 

JESSICA IS ABOUT TO SNAP AT HIM WHEN MORT INTERJECTS.

 

MORT

††††††††† Speaking of Doc Hazlitt, where is he?

 

ELI

††††††††† I didnít see the need to page him, Iím here!

 

JESSICA LOOKS AWAY AS NOAH SITS ON THE BED, HE IS PALE AND MOTIONLESS, SOMETHING CATCHES JESSICAíS EYE AND SHE STEPS FORWARD. AT THE FOOT OF THE BODY IS A HANDFUL OF WHAT APPEARS TO BE DRY MUD, SHE LOOKS UP AND NOTICES THAT SOME OF IT IS ALSO ON THE BODY.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort, have you seen this?

 

SHE POINTS TO THE MUD, MORT TAKES A CLOSER LOOK.

 

MORT

††††††††† It looks like dirt, mud of some kind.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, thatís what I thought, but where did it

††††††††† come from?

 

ELI

††††††††† Well its obvious, some damn fool who knows

††††††††† nothing about preserving crime scenes has

††††††††† trampled it in.

 

JESSICA LOOKS AROUND FURTHER AND THEN SHAKES HER HEAD.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I donít think so, I mean where are the foot

††††††††† prints?Its almost as if somebody just threw

††††††††† a handful of dirt at the body.

 

ELI

††††††††† What on earth would someone want to do that

††††††††† for? This is a suicide after all.

 

MORT

††††††††† We donít know anything for sure yet, Andy, bag

††††††††† that dirt up and get it right over to the lab.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Sure thing Sheriff.

 

ANDY BENDS DOWN AND BEGINS BAGGING THE DIRT.

 

ELI

††††††††† I take it we can proceed now then sheriff?

 

MORT

††††††††† Ok, let me have your findings ASAP, ok?

 

ELI

††††††††† Of course Sheriff, ok Josh, lets cut him down.

 

JOSH

††††††††† Ok Dr Cassidy.

 

JESSICA SHOOTS ELI A DIRTY LOOK, JUST THEN THE DOOR BURSTS OPEN AND A RED FACED AND OUT OF BREATH SETH RUNS IN.

 

SETH

††††††††† Whatís going on here? I didnít get paged.

 

ELI

(CONDISENDINGLY)

††††††††† Dr Hazlitt, I was on site and really there was

††††††††† no need for 2 doctors to come, I thought Iíd let

††††††††† you have a little restÖ

 

SETH

(FURIOUS)

††††††††† A little rest! Now listen here Eli Cassidy, Iíve

††††††††† been Doctor here for longer than youÖ

 

JESSICA CUTS IN AND SHE CROSES AND SITS NEXT TO NOAH.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Seth, the deceased is Noahís father.

†††††††††

SETH

††††††††† What! Well, IÖIím so very sorry Noah.

 

NOAH ATTEMPTS A SMILE OF GRATITUDE; JESSICA PULLS HIM CLOSE TO HER.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Noah, we should really get you out of here, I

††††††††† donít think you should go back to your rooms in

††††††††† town, youíll come and stay with me for a while,

††††††††† for as long as you need.

 

 

NOAH

††††††††† I donít understand Jessica, why was my father

††††††††† here and why didnít he tell me?

 

JESSICA SHAKES HER HEAD AND BEGINS TO LEAD HIM OUT OF THE ROOM.

 

 

  1. INT.JESSICAS KITCHEN. LATER THAT DAY.

 

JESSICA IS POTTERING IN THE KITCHEN, NOAH IS ON THE TELEPHONE IN THE OTHER ROOM, SHE HEARS HIM HANG UP AND COME INTO THE ROOM.

 

NOAH

††††††††† I just spoke to my fathersí secretary and she

††††††††† wasnít a lot of help.As far as she knew he told

††††††††† her he was coming to Cabot Cove to see how

††††††††† I was getting on, and that was almost a week ago

††††††††† (HE SITS DOWN) I donít understand Jessica, why

††††††††† would my father come down from Washington

††††††††† to see me and then not even bother to contact me.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, its difficult to say, Noah, what I do know

††††††††† is that some men have trouble expressing their

††††††††† emotions.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well that was certainly true in his case!

†††††††††

JESSICA

††††††††† But what is obvious is that even if he did have

††††††††† a problem expressing his emotions he still came

††††††††† to see how you were getting on, and if thatís the

††††††††† case he must of read the Gazette and been very

††††††††† proud of you.

 

NOAH

††††††††† You think? Shame he didnít tell me to my face.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I think he would of Noah, I really do.

 

THE KITCHEN DOOR OPENS AND MORT COMES IN.

 

MORT

††††††††† Hey folks, how you doing Noah?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Iím ok sheriff, thanks for asking.

 

MORT

††††††††† Phewy, I hate to tell you this but it looks

††††††††† as if news has gotten out already, iíve taken

††††††††† dozens of telephone calls from the press, its

††††††††† only a matter of time before they descend upon

††††††††† Cabot Cove like locusts.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh dear.

 

MORT

††††††††† It doesnít help that Doc Cassidy is calling a

††††††††† press conference for tomorrow morning.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Whatever for?Can he do that Mort?

 

MORT

(SHRUGS)

††††††††† Iíve tried having a word but you saw him Mrs. F,

††††††††† heís not exactly the most approachable person.

 

JESSICA NODS, NOAH COUGHS.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Did he tell you anything else sheriff?

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, yes, he said that his original findings

††††††††† stand, as far as heís concerned your father

††††††††† committed suicide.

 

NOAH

††††††††† I just cant believe that, it just doesnít make

††††††††† any sense.My father may have been many things

††††††††† but I just cant see him killing himself like

††††††††† that.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort, what about the soil we found?

 

MORT

††††††††† Iím still waiting for the official report but

††††††††† the prelim seems to be that its just your common

††††††††† or garden ground dirt.

 

JESSICA SCRATCHES HER HEAD.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Strange. Very strange.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well, I suppose Iíd better make some calls,

††††††††† thereís a lot to do.I have to arrange the

††††††††† funeral and everything like that.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Thereís time, Noah, one step at a time, eh?

††††††††† Where do you think the funeral will be?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well, mom is buried in Washington so I guess

††††††††† he would want to be next to her, its hard to tell

††††††††† its not really a conversation we ever had.

††††††††† Jessica, I know itís an imposition but would you

††††††††† come with me?I could sure use a friendly face!

 

JESSICA

(PATS HIS HAND)

††††††††† Of course Iíll go with you Noah, and donít worry,

††††††††† weíll get you through this.

 

  1. EXT.CABOT COVE HARBOUR.DAY

 

THE SCENE BEGINS WITH AN OVERVIEW OF THE BUSY HARBOUR, THERE IS A CROWD OF PEOPLE GATHERED LISTENING TO A MAN STANDING ON A PLATFORM TALKING TO THEM.HIS NAME IS MACK ANDERSON, A WELL GROOMED, TANNED MAN IN HIS EARLY 40S, THERE ARE SEVERAL POSTERS AROUND SHOWING PICTURES OF HIM AND HIS INTENTION TO RUN FOR THE SHERIFFS JOB.AMONGST THE CROWD ARE JESSICA AND SETH, SETH IS LOOKING INCREASINGLY AGITATED.

 

MACK

(CONTINUING)

††††††††† Öand it is my intention, if you put your faith

††††††††† in me, to restore this great town to its former

††††††††† glory, a quiet, peaceful safe haven!

 

THERE ARE SEVERAL LOUD CHEERS AND THE CROWD BEGINS TO DISPERSE, JESSICA PULLS SETH AWAY AND THEY WALK ON, MACK SPOTS THEM AND RUNS TOWARDS THEM.

 

MACK

††††††††† Mrs. Fletcher! Dr Hazlitt! I thought it was you,

††††††††† I canít tell you how much it means to me to have

††††††††† the two of you come out to support me...

 

SETH

††††††††† To support you! Why, youÖ

††††

JESSICA

(INTERJECTS)

††††††††† We were actually just passing on our way

††††††††† to have lunch.

 

MACK

††††††††† Ah, excellent! I insist you let me buy, there

††††††††† are some things I would like to run by you, as

††††††††† 2 of Cabot Coveís more prominent citizens Iíd

††††††††† really like to get your feedback on the crime

††††††††† issue.

 

SETH

††††††††† Crime issue? What crime issue?

 

MACK

††††††††† Oh now come Dr Hazlitt, figures donít lie, all

††††††††† you have to do is look and compare the crime

††††††††† statistics from 10 year ago to now and youíll

††††††††† see that the current regime here doesnít seem

††††††††† to have a handle on crime prevention.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mr. Anderson, figures may indeed not lie, but

††††††††† they can be very easily misinterpreted, for

††††††††† example, Iím sure if you compared the number of

††††††††† inhabitants 10 years ago and now and then

††††††††† compared the percentage increase in crime Iíd

††††††††† be very surprised if it wasnít almost identical.

††††††††† As far as Iím concerned Mort Metzger has been

††††††††† an exemplorary sheriff and we were very lucky

††††††††† to get him.

 

MACK

(SMILES)

††††††††† Ah, youíre going to be a challenge, I like that!

††††††††† But you will let me buy you lunch?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Maybe another time Mr. Anderson, iíve just gotten

††††††††† back into town from a funeral and would like to

††††††††† catch up with Seth.Gooday to you.

 

SHE AND SETH SWEEP OFF.

 

I donít know whatís gotten into Cabot Cove lately!

 

SETH

††††††††† Things arenít what they were, thatís for sure

††††††††† Jess.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And how are things with you?

 

SETH

††††††††† Oh you know, Iím not one to complainÖ

 

JESSICA SMILES AT HIM WISTFULLY.

 

††††††††† But that man is impossible, if heís not usurping

††††††††† me heís leaving instructions for me not to be

††††††††† paged and when I question him on it heís all,

††††††††† ĎI just wanted you to have some time to yourself

††††††††† After all your years of dedication to this town.í

††††††††† Well, I tell you one thing Jess, when I want time

††††††††† to myself I want to decide, not some upstart

††††††††† from out of town!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh Seth, I know that Dr Cassidy may be a little

††††††††† lacking on the tact front but perhaps he does

††††††††† only have your best interests at heart.

 

SETH

††††††††† Pah! All he wants is me out so he can reign

††††††††† supreme over the hospital, see in a big town

††††††††† heíd be a small fish in a big pond, here he can

††††††††† be the biggest fish of all! Once he gets me out

††††††††† of the way that is!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† But there must be enough work for both of you

††††††††† or else the hospital would never of brought him

††††††††† in, if you want to stay Seth then you have to

††††††††† find a way of working with him.

 

SETH TUTS LOUDLY AND THEY CONTINUE WALKING.

 

  1. INT.SHERIFF METZGERíS OFFICE.DAY

 

MORT AND ANDY ARE WORKING AT THEIR DESKS WHEN THE TELEPHONE RINGS.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Sheriffís office, Deputy Broom speaking.

††††††††† Yes?When? Ok, donít touch anything weíll

††††††††† be right over.

 

HE HANGS UP THE PHONE AND BEGINS PUTTING ON HIS JACKET.

 

††††††††† That was Lady Abigail Lloyd, the sister of

††††††††† Father Adler, she says heís dead.

 

MORT

††††††††† What! What happened?

 

ANDY

††††††††† I donít know she said she just found him lying

in the church with a bottle of pills next to†††

him.

 

MORT

††††††††† Ok, letís go. Phone the doc and have

††††††††† him meet us there.

 

 

 

 

  1. INT.CABOT COVE CHURCH.DAY.

 

MORT AND ANDY ENTER THE CHURCH, IT IS VERY QUIET.LADY ABIGAIL LLOYD IS SITTING ON A PEW, HER HEAD DOWN, SHE IS A LARGE WOMAN IN HER 40S WEARING A LONG FLOWING DRESS, HER LONG GREY HAIR IS TYED UP WITH SEVERAL STRANDS FALLING DOWN, A VERY HANDSOME MUCH YOUNGER MAN IS SITTING NEXT TO HER COMFORTING HER.

 

MORT

††††††††† Lady Lloyd, Iím very sorry for your loss.

 

SHE STANDS UP AND SHAKES HIS HAND.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Thank you sheriff, its Metzger isnít it? You

††††††††† must excuse me I havenít had much chance to

††††††††† get accustomed to names yet.

 

MORT

††††††††† Thatís ok Lady Lloyd.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Please Sheriff, call me Abigail, I left the

††††††††† Lady Lloyd name in England last month when

††††††††† my dear husband passed on.

 

MORT

††††††††† Iím sorry to hear that Abigail, and now your

††††††††† brotherÖ

 

SHE CASTS A GLANCE OVER AT THE FRONT OF THE CHURCH; HER BROTHERS FEET ARE STICKING OUT FROM BEHIND A PEW.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Well, my husband was a very sick man for a VERY

††††††††† long time and as for my brother, well, Iíve been

††††††††† out of America for over 20 years, to all intents

††††††††† and purposes we were strangers to each other,†††††††††††† stillÖ one cant help feeling very sad that it

††††††††† came to this.

 

MORT STEPS FORWARD AND LOOKS AT THE BODY, HE TAKES OUT A PAIR OF GLOVES, PUTS THEM ON AND PICKS UP A BOTTLE OF PILLS.

 

MORT

††††††††† Hmm, antidepressants prescribed by Dr Cassidy,

††††††††† would you say your Father Adler suffered from

††††††††† depression?

†††††††††

††††††††††††††††† ABIGAIL

††††††††††††† (LOOKING PENSIVE)

††††††††† Well as I said Sheriff Metzger I didnít really

††††††††† know my brother that well and when my husband

††††††††† died, well, there were complications and I

††††††††† thought it best to step away for a while.

 

MORT

††††††††† Complications?

 

ABIGAIL

(COLDLY)

††††††††† Well, my husband, Lord Lloyd was an elderly man

††††††††† and he already had a family before I came along

††††††††† and lets just say, as is so often the case, they

††††††††† didnít take at all well to me, especially when

††††††††† it appears that he altered his will in my favor,

so, I thought, until the dust Iíd come see what was, in effect, my only living relative.

 

SHE STARES AGAIN AT THE BODY.

 

But once again it appears that a problem has presented itself.

 

MORT REGARDS HER CAUTIOUSLY; HE THEN TURNS HIS ATTENTION TO THE HANDSOME MAN BY HER SIDE.

 

MORT

††††††††† And you are?

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Oh please excuse me Sheriff, this is Sebastian

††††††††† Merrick, heís my, heís myÖ personal assistant.

 

SEBASTIAN STEPS FORWARD AND SHAKES MORTíS HAND.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Hello Sheriff.

 

MORT

††††††††† Hello.And you discovered the body together?

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† That is correct Sheriff, we normally take a

walk along the cliff tops at this time of the day, one forgets how beautiful America can be after getting used to the English countryside.

 

MORT

††††††††† And you discovered the body, how?

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Well, we where just making our way to

††††††††† the house for lunch when Sebastian spotted

††††††††† the door of the church open so we came over

††††††††† to check and thatís when we found him.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Just lying there dead.

 

MORT

††††††††† And you donít recall him being depressed at all?

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Well, thatís quite difficult to say, as I said

††††††††† my brother and I, whilst not estranged we were

††††††††† never really close and as you yourself may know

††††††††† he was a serious chap, never really had much to

††††††††† say, I think I rather disrupted his peaceful

††††††††† world of books and sermons, the flighty younger

††††††††† sister running away from scandal in England!

 

ENTER JESSICA AND SETH.

 

SETH

††††††††† I got your message Sheriff, whatís happened?

 

MORT

††††††††† Itís Father Adler, doc.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh dear how terrible!

†††††††††

SETH GOES OVER TO THE BODY; ABIGAIL MAKES A BEELINE FOR JESSICA.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† It is you; I canít tell you how much Iíve been

††††††††† looking forward to meeting you, Jessica Fletcher!

††††††††† My name is Lady Abigail Lloyd, we do, I believe

††††††††† have mutual friends in London, the Hargreaves?

 

JESSICA

(SOMEWHAT FLUSTERED)

††††††††† Y..yes. I know Lance and Lauren Hargreaves very

††††††††† well, Lauren and I share the same British

††††††††† publisher.Lady Lloyd, that means, oh dear,

††††††††† Iím so sorry for your loss.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† My loss? Oh yes, indeed.

 

SETH REJOINS THEM.

 

SETH

††††††††† Iíd say heís been dead not more than 2 hours,

††††††††† Iíll get him back to the morgue and let you

††††††††† know later today what I find.

 

MORT

††††††††† And the pills? The antidepressants?

 

SETH LOOKS AT THE BOTTLE, SHAKES IT AND COUNTS THE PILLS.

 

SETH

††††††††† I canít think why Cassidy prescribed him these,

††††††††† Iíve never known Father Adler to have anything

but flu and hay fever! But it does seem that there are more pills missing than there ought.

 

JESSICA STEPS FORWARD AND APPROACHES THE BODY.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort, did you see this?

 

MORT FOLLOWS HER, HE KNEELS NEXT TO THE BODY WHERE THERE IS A HANDFUL OF DIRT THAT APPEAS TO HAVE BEEN SPRINKLED OVER THE BODY.

 

MORT

††††††††† It looks like dirt.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, dirt, again.

 

ABIGAIL.

††††††††† Again? What do you mean by again?

 

 

SETH

††††††††† She doesnít mean anything, somebody must of just

††††††††† carried it in on their feet.

 

JESSICA AND MORT EXCHANGE WORRIED GLANCES.

 

  1. JESSICAíS KITCHEN.NIGHT

 

IT IS LATER THAT NIGHT, MORT IS SITTING AT THE TABLE DRINKING COFFEE WHILE JESSICA TALKS ON THE TELEPHONE.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Ok Noah, well listen you take care of yourself,

††††††††† and Iíll see you tomorrow, donít worry about

††††††††† that, weíve got 2 days to get the newspaper

††††††††† ready and Iím sure between us weíll manage.

††††††††† Ok, goodbye and safe journey!

 

SHE HANGS UP AND SITS NEXT TO MORT AND POURS SOME COFFEE.

 

MORT

††††††††† Howís Noah doing?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, itís a little difficult to tell, he tends

††††††††† To keep his feelings to himself.Iím glad I

††††††††† went to his fathers funeral with him though, I

††††††††† think there were only 1 or 2 other people there

††††††††† that he knew.

 

MORT

††††††††† And you didnít tell him about the soil at Father

††††††††† Adlerís feet?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† What was there to tell him? I donít know what it

††††††††† means, if indeed it means anything! But its

††††††††† strange, yes, its very strange.What appears to

††††††††† be a handful of dirt at the feet of 2 apparent

††††††††† suicides barely a week apart.

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, stranger things have happened I suppose.

 

JESSICA

(UNCONVINCED)

††††††††† Yes, Iím sure its nothingÖ

 

THE DOOR OPENS AND SETH BUSTLES IN, HE HELPS HIMSELF TO A COFFEE.

 

SETH

††††††††† Ah! Just what I needed!

 

MORT

††††††††† What you got for me doc?

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, itís as I suspected, death appears to have

††††††††† been caused by an overdose.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And there was nothing to indicate anything else?

 

SETH

†††† †††† Whatís that devious mind of yours getting at

††††††††† Jess?

 

JESSICA

(SHRUGS)

††††††††† Well, its just this soil business I cant shake.

††††††††† It seems such a strange coincidence, yet there

††††††††† seems to be no doubt that both deaths where

††††††††† indeed suicide.

 

SETH

††††††††† Yup, thatís true enough.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Is it possible that these deaths could have been

††††††††† staged so that they appear to be suicides?

 

MORT

Well, itís possible, I suppose, but if someoneís going to go to the trouble of covering up a murder like that then why throw dirt at the scene? Theyíd have to know that would make us suspicious.

 

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, itís that thatís bothering meÖ

 

MORTS CELLPHONE RINGS AND HE ANSWERS IT.

MORT

††††††††† Metzger, oh hi Andy, what! Youíre kidding me!

††††††††† How long? And how did it happen? Ok, Iím on

my way, iíve got the Doc with me.Hey Andy, check something for me, look around the body, can you see what appears to be a handful of dirt? You

††††††††† can, ok.See you soon.

 

HE HANGS UP, JESSICA AND SETH ARE STARING.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort?

 

MORT

††††††††† Andy just found the body of the fisherman Aaron

††††††††† Davis down by the docks, seems someone bashed his

††††††††† head in with a shovel.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh how dreadful! And the dirt?

 

MORT

††††††††† Yup, its there alright.

 

SETH

††††††††† Lordy!

†††††††††

JESSICA

††††††††† I donít understand whatís going on here! But

††††††††† Mort, I think there is a serial killer in Cabot

††††††††† Cove!

 

  1. EXT.CABOT COVE HARBOUR.DAY

 

JESSICA, SETH AND MORT PULL UP IN MORTíS CAR, THERE IS A LARGE CROWD OF PEOPLE, ANDY AND SOME OTHER DEPUTYS ARE TRYING TO KEEP THEM BACK, ANDY SEES MORT AND WALKS OVER TO HIM AND LEADS HIM TO A BODY COVERED IN A SHEET, MORT BENDS DOWN AND LOOKS UNDER THE SHEET AND WINCES, SETH FOLLOWS HIM AND BEGINS AN INVESTIGATION OF THE BODY.

 

MORT

††††††††† Any idea what happened here Andy?

 

ANDY

††††††††† Well, no-one saw anything, best I can make out

††††††††† is that Aaron went out on his boat this morning

††††††††† as usual and that was the last anyone saw of him.

 

MORT

††††††††† And who found his body?

 

ANDY

††††††††† Sheila from the diner, she was on her way

††††††††† to start her lunchtime shift, sheís pretty shaken

††††††††† up, there was a lot of blood.

 

MORT

††††††††† Yeah, so I can see.Did you get anything from

††††††††† her?

 

ANDY

††††††††† No, she didnít see anything strange or anyone

††††††††† else around, things are pretty quiet this side

††††††††† of the harbor and its quite well hidden from the

††††††††† market area.

 

MORT LOOKS AROUND.

†††††††††

MORT

††††††††† Yeah, perfect place if you want to do someone

††††††††† in quietly.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Do we know of anyone who may have had a grudge

††††††††† against Aaron?

 

ANDY

††††††††† Not really, he liked a game of poker like half

††††††††† the men in town but I donít think there were

††††††††† any debts or anything like that if thatís what

††††††††† you mean.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, usually when something like this happens

††††††††† you look at the possibilities and often its

something to do with love affairs or money problems.

 

MORT

††††††††† Love Affairs! I think the only thing Aaron Davis

††††††††† was interested in was his fish!

 

JESSICA APPROACHES THE BODY AND LOOKS AT THE SOIL.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort, I wonder, when you get the lab to examine

††††††††† the soil would they be able to tell if it all

††††††††† came from the same place?

 

MORT

††††††††† I donít see why not, why, do you think that makes

††††††††† a difference?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I donít know, probably not, but it may help us

††††††††† to know if itís the same TYPE of soil as it may

††††††††† help pinpoint a location.

 

MORT

††††††††† Good point, Andy, get that soil bagged up and

††††††††† straight over to the lab, she what they can

††††††††† find.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Right away Sheriff.

 

HE BEGINS BAGGING THE SOIL AND WALKS OFF.

 

MORT

††††††††† What do you reckon doc?

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, death was by massive trauma to the head

††††††††† probably caused by the shovel over there that

appears to have half of his brain matter still on it.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, it seems rather a violent murder, doesnít

††††††††† it?

 

MORT

††††††††† Murders often are Mrs. F

†††††††††

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I know that, I just mean that the amount of blood

††††††††† seems to be rather excessive, as if a lot of

††††††††† force was used.

 

SETH

††††††††† What are you getting at Jess?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh Iím not sure really, but it seems that crimes

††††††††† of such violent force are generally either

††††††††† personal or because the killer is a particularly

††††††††† psychotic man.

 

MORT

††††††††† I get you, but how does that help?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† It doesnít really, but if thatís the case then

††††††††† I donít think weíve seen the last of him

 

SETH

††††††††† Words to chill a person to the bone!

 

JUST THEN, MACK ANDERSON ENTERS AND STORMS OVER TO THE SCENE, WHEN HE SPEAKS IT IS IN A LOUD, ARGUMENTATIVE MANNER SO THAT THE CROWD CAN HEAR HIM.

 

MACK

††††††††† So sheriff, what do we have here?

 

MORT

††††††††† A crime scene Anderson, you want to get back

††††††††† with the rest of the civilians?

 

MACK

††††††††† As I was just saying earlier and here we

†††† †††† have further proof that you donít have a

††††††††† handle on this town anymore!

 

SEVERAL PEOPLE IN THE CROWN BEING CHEERING IN AGREEMENT.

 

MORT

††††††††† What! Now listen hereÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Gentleman, please, Aaron Davis has just been

††††††††† murdered, this is hardly the time or the place

††††††††† to be talking about town politics.

 

MACK

††††††††† Yes indeed, the truth hurts!

 

HE WALKS OFF INTO THE CROWD AND CONTINUES INSIGHTING THEM.

 

MORT

††††††††† That man gets right under my skin!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I know Mort but you cant let him get to you, you

††††††††† just have to keep doing your job the same way you

††††††††† always have.

††††

MORT

††††††††† For how long? Judging by that crowd they agree

††††††††† with Mack, maybe I should just throw in the towel

††††††††† now and save myself some embarrassment.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh Mort, donít be so silly, come election time

††††††††† your record will speak for itself, youíll see,

††††††††† and besides, if there is a serial killer in

††††††††† Cabot Cove that would of happened whether you

††††††††† or Mack was sheriff. Have a little faith Mort.

 

MORT

††††††††† Iíll try Mrs. F, Iíll try.

 

SETH

††††††††† We should be getting Aaron to the morgue.

 

MORT

††††††††† Oh yeah, sure thing Doc.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† It may be worth having another look at Father

††††††††† Adler.

 

SETH

††††††††† What do you expect to find?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I donít know, maybe nothing but I think we

††††††††† should give it a go just in case.

 

MORT

††††††††† Eli Cassidy did the PM, heís gonna love us

††††††††† second guessing him!

 

 

 

SETH

(CHUCKLES LOUDLY)

††††††††† Yes he is, isnít he!

 

 

 

14.                     INT.HOSPITAL MORGUE.DAY

 

 

JESSICA, SETH, MORT AND ELI ARE GATHERED AROUND A BODY THAT IS COVERED BY A SHEET.

 

ELI

††††††††† Sheriff, I donít really see the point in

††††††††† reexamining the body, as I said in my report,

††††††††† its fairly straight forward.Cause of death

††††††††† was acute respotory failure due to an overdose

††††††††† of prescribed medication.

 

MORT

And youíre sure thereís nothing that appears to be out of the ordinary?

 

ELI

(EXASPERATED)

††††††††† In what respect? He appears to have been a middle

††††††††† aged man in reasonable health, nothing more than †††

††††††††† that.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Dr Cassidy, excuse me, but the overdose appears

††††††††† to have been of anti-depressants that you

††††††††† prescribed, is that correct?

 

ELI

††††††††† Well Mrs. Fletcher you know I cant talk

††††††††† about a patientÖ

 

SETH

††††††††† I knew Frank Adler for many years and I donít

††††††††† think Iíve ever prescribed anything other than

††††††††† flu medicine to him.

 

ELI

††††††††† Well what I will say is that it seemed to me

††††††††† that Father Adler had been suffering from

††††††††† chronic depression for many years and had

††††††††† never been diagnosed or treated for it.

 

SETH

††††††††† Why, listen here!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh Dr Cassidy, I have to agree with Seth, we

††††††††† all knew Father Adler for many years and I cant

††††††††† believe he was suffering from something that

††††††††† serious, I know he hated the winters thatís why

††††††††† he always spent the cold season in Hawaii, but

††††††††† apart from that I canít think of many other men

††††††††† so vibrant and committed to their jobs.

 

SETH

††††††††† Here Here!

 

ELI

††††††††† Be that as it may I can only speak from my own

††††††††† medical impression.Now, Sheriff, what do you

††††††††† want me to look for exactly?

 

MORT

††††††††† A clueÖsomethingÖanything, all I know is that in

††††††††† a matter of weeks there have been 3 deaths in

††††††††† Cabot Cove and there doesnít seem to be any

††††††††† connection other than this soil issue, now we

††††††††† know the 3rd death was murder I just want to

††††††††† be sure that the others are what they seem.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† But William Mullen has already been buried.

 

MORT

††††††††† I know and hopefully we can leave him there to

††††††††† rest in peace, but all the same, we have to

††††††††† be sure.

 

JESSICA LOOKS AT HER WATCH.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh golly look at the time, I promised Noah I

††††††††† would meet his bus so we could make a start on

††††††††† the next issue of the Gazette.

 

SETH

††††††††† What are you going to tell him?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I donít know what there is to tell him really,

††††††††† but all the same, I feel he should be told about

††††††††† the soil on all 3 bodies.Mort?

 

MORT

††††††††† Hmm.Well, I was really trying to keep that

††††††††† info to as few people as possible, still, if

††††††††† you can get him to keep it out of the Gazette

††††††††† then there shouldnít really be any harm in him

††††††††† knowing.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Ok, Iíll see you all later.

 

15.                     EXT.CABOT COVE BUS TERMINAL.DAY

 

JESSICA RUSHES UP TO THE TERMINAL JUST AS THE BUS PULLS IN, SHE WATCHES AS PEOPLE OFFLOAD, FINALLY NOAH ALIGHTS, HE LOOKS VERY PALE AND DRAWN, SHE RUSHES OVER AND GIVES HIM A HUG, HIS HANDS STAY AT HIS SIDE, HE SEEMS UNSURE WHAT TO DO WITH SIGNS OF AFFECTION.HE PULLS AWAY AND RETRIEVES HIS BAG, JESSICA LINKS ARMS WITH HIM AND THEY BEGIN WALKING.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† How are you Noah?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Oh Iím fine, Jessica, thanks for coming to

††††††††† meet me.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† No need to thank me, are you really fine?

 

NOAH

††††††††† I am you know, I guess the truth is I didnít

††††††††† really know my father well enough to get

††††††††† upset over his death.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Noah, you donít mean that.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Donít get me wrong, Jessica, Iím not glad heís

††††††††† dead or anything but I cant feel something for

††††††††† a man I didnít know, even the fact that he

††††††††† came down here to see how I was getting on

††††††††† doesnít really mean anything, if he wanted to

††††††††† he could easily of come and seen me, just to

††††††††† tell me he was proud of me, or not, it wouldnít

††††††††† of mattered, just something would have been nice.

 

THEY LAPSE INTO SILENCE AND CONTINUE WALKING.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† So what happens next? Do you think youíll stay

††††††††† in Cabot Cove?

 

NOAH

††††††††† I guess so; I donít really know whatís happening

††††††††† at the moment, Washington was just one meeting

††††††††† after another, seems Iím the last of the Mullenís

††††††††† which means that its all mine, lock stock and

††††††††† barrel, and it seems dad had quite a bit

††††††††† hidden away.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well thatís comforting I suppose.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Yeah, a rich orphan! All alone in the world.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh Noah, thatís simply not true, you have me,

††††††††† you have friends who care a great deal about you,

††††††††† families arenít always a good thing you know!

††††††††† Look at it this way, you get to choose your

††††††††† own family now.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Thanks Jessica, you do have a knack of making

††††††††† me feel better.Want to be a honary member of

††††††††† my family?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I would be delighted!

 

SHE KISSES HIS CHEEK.

 

NOAH

††††††††† So whatís been happening in Cabot Cove in my

††††††††† absence.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Ah well, yes, I wanted to talk to you about

††††††††† that.

 

NOAH

††††††††† You did? Sounds intriguing.

 

JESSICA

Yes, you see there have been 2 more deaths, Father Adler was found dead in his church, it looks like he committed suicide.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Wow, another suicide.†† You said 2 deaths?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, thereís little doubt though that the

††††††††† second was murder.

 

NOAH

I go away for a few days and all hell breaks loose!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Y..yes.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Jessica, what is it that youíre not telling me?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well Noah, you understand it may be nothing, but

††††††††† do you remember the soil that was found next to

††††††††† your fathersí body?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Yes I do, very strange and out of place.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, it seems that there were similar mounds of

††††††††† soil found at the feet of the other 2 bodies.

 

NOAH

††††††††† What?

 

THEY LAPSE INTO SILENCE.

 

††††††††† Wait a minute, if the second death was

††††††††† unquestionably murder then that means it was

††††††††† deliberate.†† I knew it Jessica, I knew my

††††††††† father wasnít the type of man to commit

††††††††† suicide!What about the priest?Are they

††††††††† sure he committed suicide.

 

JESSICA

(SHRUGS)

††††††††† Well, the truth is they cant tell one way

††††††††† or the other, Dr Cassidy looked again at

††††††††† the body at a little while ago and thereís

††††††††† nothing to suggest anything but suicide.

 

NOAH

††††††††† But suicides can be faked, Jessica, you of

††††††††† all people should know that.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I understand that, but what I donít understand

††††††††† is why.

 

NOAH

††††††††† What do you mean?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, why stage a murder to look like a suicide?

††††††††† It would only make sense to do that if you

††††††††† wanted to keep getting away with it.If you

††††††††† father and Father Adler where indeed murdered

††††††††† why would the murderer then completely change

††††††††† his modus operandi and actually kill the next

††††††††† person in such a way that there could be no doubt

††††††††† that it was murder.

 

NOAH

††††††††† I see what you mean now, yes, that doesnít make

††††††††† a lot of sense, but it cant be a coincidence,

††††††††† Jessica, can it?

 

 

JESSICA

No, I rather think it canít and that scares me, a lot!

 

16.                     INT.CABOT COVE GAZETTE OFFICE.DAY

 

JESSICA & NOAH ARE RUSHING AROUND THE OFFICE PUTTING THE FINAL TOUCHES TO THE NEWSPAPER, THE TELEPHONE RINGS.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Hullo, Cabot Cove Gazette, Noah speaking,

††††††††† how can I help?Oh Hi, Mr. Simmons

††††††††† (PUTS HAND OVER PHONE AND MOUTHS TO JESSICA)

††††††††† Itís my dadís lawyer.Yes Mr. Simmons,

††††††††† I understand your objection but its my

††††††††† decision to make, no Iím not worried about the

††††††††† scandal, I want to knowÖ I need to know, I

††††††††† donít believe my father would of killed himself

††††††††† and in light of whatís happened here, I need

††††††††† to be sure.Canít you understand that?Well,

††††††††† Iím sorry you feel like that but as I said

††††††††† its not really your decision.Please make

††††††††† the arrangements and let me know when its done.

 

HE HANGS UP THE PHONE AND SIGHS.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Your fathers lawyerís not very happy about the

††††††††† exhumation I take it?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Not even close but I think heís more worried

††††††††† about what the press are going to say.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, he does have a point, your father was

††††††††† a very prominent man thereís going to be a great

††††††††† deal of interest in this, are you sure you want

††††††††† to do it?

 

NOAH

Am I sure?No but I keep thinking that I need to know the truth one way or the other, for dads sake as well as my own, if someone did this to him then they need to be punished for it.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, there is that, whenís it happening?

 

NOAH

††††††††† In the next couple of hours, thanks to dads

††††††††† position in Washington, Simmons has managed

††††††††† to get the Chief Medical Examiner to re-examine

††††††††† his body, we should know one way or the other

††††††††† later tonight.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Ok, well lets not dwell on it for now, shall

††††††††† we put this baby to bed?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Absolutely!

 

17.                     INT.JESSICAíS KITCHEN.NIGHT

 

JESSICA, SETH AND NOAH ARE IN THE KITCHEN FINISHING DINNER, SETH IS READING THE GAZETTE, HE FOLDS IT UP AND PUTS IT DOWN.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, another excellent edition of the Gazette

††††††††† you two, you should be very proud.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh its all Noahís work, I just helped a little!

 

NOAH

††††††††† Jessica, that simply isnít true, I couldnít of

††††††††† done any of it without you, especially the latest

††††††††† Inspector Armand mystery, brilliant!

 

SETH

††††††††† So, it was, tell me Jess, any more thoughts on

††††††††† starting a new book?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, you know thereís a little germ of an idea

††††††††† there, I think it could turn into something.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Thatís excellent news!

 

 

SETH

(TWINKLES)

††††††††† Aye, it is, it sure is.

 

JESSICA SMILES AT HIM AFFECTIONATELY AND PATS HIS HAND, NOAHíS CELLPHONE RINGS, HE ANSWERS IT.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Hullo.Oh Hi Mr. Simmons, thanks for getting

††††††††† back to me.Ok.Oh my God, are you sure? But

††††††††† I donít understand, how was that missed? Ok, Iíll

††††††††† let the sheriff here know right away, thanks Mr.

††††††††† Simmons, thank you so much.

 

HE HANGS UP AND LOOKS VERY PAIL.

 

 

JESSICA

††††††††† What is it Noah?

 

NOAH

††††††††† They just finished the second post mortem on

††††††††† my dad and they found something.

 

SETH

††††††††† What?

 

NOAH

A bruise on the back of his neck that looks like finger impressions, they believe that the position of the bruises indicate that they couldnít of come from my dad.

 

SETH

What do you mean?

 

NOAH

The medical examiner believes that the bruises

were caused by somebody tying my dad up.I donít

understand how that could have been missed in the original postmortem.

 

JESSICA

Well, its not uncommon for bruises to take some

time to appear which would explain the discrepancy between the two examinations...

 

SETH

Or the doctor that performed the first one didnít

do his job properly.

 

JESSICA

Seth, we cant know that for sure.

 

SETH

Oh cant we!

 

JESSICA

But theyíre sure are they Noah?

 

NOAH

Mr. Simmons seemed convinced, theyíre going to fax the pm results over to Sheriff Metzger, weíd better get over there and let him know whatís happened.

 

18.                     SHERIFF METZGERíS OFFICE.NIGHT

 

MORT IS BUSILY WORKING AT HIS DESK, DEPUTY ANDY ENTERS AND APPROACHES HIM WAVING A PIECE OF PAPER.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Just got the results from the lab about the soil

††††††††† found at the crime scenes.

 

MORT

††††††††† And?

 

ANDY

(SHRUGS AND LOOKS AT PAPER AGAIN)

††††††††† Nothing startling, common ground soil, nothing

††††††††† special to report other than the soil has the

same chemical breakdown indicating it all came from the same place.

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, at least that certainly shows the 2

††††††††† apparent suicides in a different light.

 

HE GETS UP AS THE FAX MACHINE BEGINS WHIRRING, HE PULLS THE PAPER FROM IT AND BEGINS READING.

 

††††††††† Itís a fax from the Chief Medical Examiner of

††††††††† Washington regarding the PM he performed on

††††††††† William Mullen this afternoon.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Noahís dad?

 

MORT

††††††††† Yeah, well Iíll be darned.

 

 

ANDY

††††††††† Whatís up sheriff?

 

MORT

††††††††† Well according to this fellow he thinks that this

††††††††† is a case of murder made to look like suicide.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Well I guess that fits.

 

MORT

††††††††† Sure does, we need to have another look at Father

††††††††† Adler.

 

JESSICA, SETH AND NOAH ARRIVE.

 

††††††††† Ah, Noah, I just received a fax about your dad.

 

NOAH

††††††††† I know, Iíve heard, what do you think Sheriff?

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, it certainly changes things.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Any further developments Mort?

 

MORT

††††††††† We just got the report back from the lab and it

††††††††† confirms that the soil found at all 3 deaths is

††††††††† from the same place.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, thatís certainly interesting.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Whatís your next move sheriff?

 

MORT

††††††††† Well I was just going to head over the hospital

††††††††† I think the body of Father Adler deserves another

††††††††† look over.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Weíre coming with you, somebody murdered my dad

††††††††† and I want to know why.

 

19.                     HOSPITAL MORGUE.NIGHT

 

THE HOSPITAL MORGUE IS VERY DARK AND EERY, CLASSICAL MUSIC PLAYS IN THE BACKGROUND AS ELI IS BENT OVER THE BODY OF AARON DAVIS AS HE PERFORMS THE PM, AROUND HIM, MORTUARY ASSISTANT JOSH THOMAS IS BUSYING HIMSELF.

 

ELI

†††† †††† Phew, this old chap sure liked a drink!

 

JOSH

(SHOOTS A NASTY LOOK AT THE CORPSE)

††††††††† He sure did, a mean drunk he was too.

 

ELI

††††††††† Really, never met the chap myself.Hand me

††††††††† the saw would you Josh?

 

JOSH HANDS HIM THE SAW AND WATCHES AS HE BEGINS CUTTING.

 

††††††††† You really like your work donít you son?

 

JOSH

††††††††† I sure do, Dr Cassidy.

 

ELI

††††††††† Didnít you ever think of training to be a doctor?

 

JOSH LOOKS AWAY, HIS FACE WHITE AND HIS MANNER CHILLY.

 

JOSH

††††††††† Thought about itÖ yes, but some things are meant

††††††††† for some people.

 

ELI

††††††††† Nonsense, boy! This is America, land of the free

††††††††† hope for all and that sort of thing.

 

JOSH

††††††††† Iím not sure that applies to us all Dr Cassidy,

††††††††† some people just donít get given the chances that

††††††††† others doÖ

 

THE DOOR OPENS AND NOAH, MORT, JESSICA AND SETH ENTER; THEY APPROACH BUT STEP BACK WHEN THEY SEE THE BODY.

 

 

SETH

††††††††† What are you doing Cassidy? I was down to do the

††††††††† Davis PM in the morning.

 

ELI PUTS HIS GLASSES ON AND LOOKS AT SETH WITH PITY.

 

ELI

††††††††† Oh really Dr Hazlitt, I wasnít aware of that,

††††††††† Its just I thought with a murderer on the loose

††††††††† it was more prudent for me to forgo my dinner

††††††††† and get right to it, I didnít realize things

††††††††† were done differently in Cabot CoveÖ

†††††††††

SETH

††††††††† Why, listen here you littleÖ

 

MORT STEPS FORWARD AND BLOCKS THE TWO MEN.

 

MORT

††††††††† Listen Dr Cassidy, weíve just had word from the

††††††††† Chief Medical Examiner in Washington, he looked

††††††††† again at the body of William Mullen and thinks

††††††††† there is a very real likelihood that it was

††††††††† staged to look like a suicideÖ

 

ELI

††††††††† What! I didnít give permission for thatÖ

 

NOAH

††††††††† I did, he was my father and I didnít believe he†††††††††† would of killed himself.

 

JEESICA

††††††††† It seems that there were bruises at the back

††††††††† of his neck that were inconsistent with him

††††††††† strangling himself.

 

 

ELI

††††††††† Well, it is possible that the bruises wouldnít

††††††††† of shown up right away.

 

MORT

††††††††† Thatís just what Mrs. F thought.

 

ELI

(BEAMS)

††††††††† Ah is that so! Well, Mrs. Fletcher, great minds

††††††††† think alike!

 

MORT

††††††††† So, we now know that there have been at least

††††††††† 2 murders in Cabot Cove linked by a handful

††††††††† Of soil, the same soil was found next to Father

††††††††† Adler, now, what I want to know is whether that

††††††††† apparent suicide could have been staged too.

 

ELI

(CONDESENDINGLY)

††††††††† Sheriff Metzger, I understand that it may be

††††††††† possible to string someone up and make it look

††††††††† like suicide, butÖ

 

EVERYONE BUT ELI AND NOAH WINCE AT THAT REMARK.

 

††††††††† I donít see how it would be possible to stage

††††††††† an overdose of pills.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well what about somebody holding a gun to his

††††††††† head?

 

MORT

††††††††† Maybe Doc, but I think if it was me you would

††††††††† think Iím gonna die either way so I certainly

††††††††† aint gonna make it easy!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I had a thought Dr Cassidy, have you examined the

††††††††† stomach contents of Father Adler?

 

SETH

††††††††† What you thinking Jess?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, just because we found a bottle of empty

††††††††† pills next to the body we just assumed that

††††††††† the Father took an overdose, when of course,

††††††††† it doesnít necessarily mean that. He could of

††††††††† course drunk something that contained the pills

††††††††† crushed up, and I may be wrong, but I would

††††††††† think that the stomach contents may show how

††††††††† the pills where ingested.

 

SETH

††††††††† Its certainly would Jess, we done! Well, Cassidy

††††††††† what of it?

 

ELI

(SNAPS)

††††††††† Do, I look like I have nothing else to do, Josh!

††††††††† Josh! Get over here!

 

JOSH RUNS OVER LIKE A SCARED DOG.

 

JOSH

††††††††† Yes, Dr Cassidy?

 

ELI

††††††††† Prep the Adler body, it looks like neither of

††††††††† us is going to get much sleep.

 

 

20.                     INT.CHURCH RECTORY.DAY

 

LADY ABIGAIL LLOYD IS IN A CRAMPED, DUSTY OLD RECTORY LIVING ROOM, SHE IS HOLDING A PIECE OF PAPER, SHE CURSES, CRUMPLES IT AND THROWS IT TOWARDS THE BIN, SEBASTIAN MERRICK ENTERS AND WALKS TOWARDS HER AND PULLS HER INTO A PASSIONATE CLINCH.SHE PULLS AWAY.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† What is it Abigail?

†††††††††

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Oh Sebastian! What am I to do, iíve just received

††††††††† a letter from that useless old solicitor of mine,

††††††††† its confirmed Iím afraid, Regís family have

††††††††† lodged a suit against me! What am I to do? Oh

††††††††† to have come so close to finally having the life

††††††††† I deserved, I cant bear to lose it again, I cant

††††††††† bear it I tell you!

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Calm down Abigail, it wont come to that! They

††††††††† cant do a damn thing about it, they know that

††††††††† and theyíre just trying to scare you!

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Well theyíre doing a pretty damn good job! Do

††††††††† you really think that they havenít got a case?

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Not even close! The old fellow was as sane as

††††††††† the rest of us.You didnít force him to change

††††††††† his will and they cant prove you did!

 

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Oh but what about us Sebastian? Suppose they

††††††††† find out that Reg discovered us and threatened

††††††††† to divorce me.

 

SEBASTIAN

(THROWS BACK HEAD AND LAUGHS)

††††††††† The pertinent word there love is threatened,

††††††††† he could threaten all he likes fact is he didnít††††

††††††††† do a damn thing about it, he died and his will

††††††††† stayed the same! Very fortunate!

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Yes. VERY fortunate.All the same Sebastian,

††††††††† weíre talking about an awful lot of money, we

††††††††† should, I think, be a little discreet from now

††††††††† on, just in case, I mean, for all we know we

††††††††† could be being watched or anything.

 

SEBASTIAN CONSIDERS THIS FOR A MOMENT.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Maybe your right darling, maybe your right.

 

HE CROSSES THE ROOM AND PULLS OPEN THE HEAVY DRAPES, SUNLIGHT FLOODS THE ROOM, SEBASTIAN CASTS HIS GAZE INTO THE CHURCHYARD AND GASPS.

 

††††††††† Oh God, what on earthís happened?

 

ABIGAIL JOINS HIM AND LETS OUT A GASP OF HER OWN.

 

21.                     EXT.CHURCHYARD. DAY

 

SEBASTIAN AND ABIGAIL COME OUT OF THE RECTORY INTO THE CHURCHYARD WHERE IT IS A SCENE OF CHAOS, MANY OF THE GRAVES HAVE BEEN UPROOTED, OTHERS HAVE BEEN SMASHED AND OTHERS HAVE HAD PAINT THROWN ONTO THEM.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Oh this is terrible! Who would do such a

††††††††† horrible, horrible thing!

 

22.                     EXT.CHURCHYARD.DAY

 

MORT AND ANDY ARE EXAMINING THE CHURCHYARD, SEBASTIAN AND ABIGAIL LOOK ON, NOAH IS WALKING AROUND TAKING PHOTOGRAPHS, JESSICA APPEARS OUTSIDE, PROPS HER BIKE AGAINST THE WALL AND WALKS IN.

 

JESSICA

(GASPS)

††††††††† Oh dear! Who would do such a terrible thing?

 

MORT

††††††††† Beats me, Mrs. F, but there sure are some sickos

††††††††† out there.

 

JESSICA APPROACHES ABIGAIL AND SEBASTIAN.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Lady Lloyd, are you alright?

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Oh I'm fine, Jessica, truly I am.Its all such

††††††††† a shock though, to hear my brother talk about

††††††††† Cabot Cove youíd think nothing ever happened

††††††††† here.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, this sort of thing isnít usual, I can

††††††††† assure you of that.

†††††††††

MORT

††††††††† And youíre sure you didnít hear anything at

††††††††† all Lady Lloyd.

 

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† No Sheriff, I didnít hear a thing Iím afraid,

††††††††† you see I turned in early last night, the shock

††††††††† of things you know and I must of dozed straight

†††† †††† off.

 

MORT

††††††††† And you Mr. Merrick?

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Me? Well, I turned in early also, thereís not

††††††††† really a lot else to do around here.

 

MORT

††††††††† And neither of you saw anyone hanging about

††††††††† or heard anything? Judging by the mess here

††††††††† this canít have happened quietly.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Well, our room is at the back of the house soÖ

 

HE TRAILS OFF WHEN HE REALISES WHAT HE HAS SAID, ABIGAIL SHOOTS HIM A FILTHY LOOK, JESSICA LOOKS AWAY AND MORT COUGHS WITH EMBARESSMENT.

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, thanks for that, if you do think of

††††††††† anything be sure to let me know.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† We will Sheriff, come Sebastian.Mrs. Fletcher.

 

JESSICA NODS AS ABIGAIL AND SEBASTIAN ENTER THE RECTORY.NOAH THEN APPROACHES CAMERA IN HAND.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Iíve been taking some photos for the Gazette

††††††††† Sheriff, I hope you donít mind.

 

MORT

††††††††† Not at all Noah, be obliged if you could let

††††††††† me have some copies for my records though.

 

NOAH

††††††††† No problem.Who would do this?

 

JESSICA BEGINS LOOKING AROUND.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† There doesnít seem to be a pattern to it, some

††††††††† of the stones are smashed, others are knocked

over and some have what appears to

††††††††† be ordinary red paint just thrown over them.

 

MORT

††††††††† It could just be kids, but I cant see how any

††††††††† of the town kids would do this.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, you would think so, I know things arenít

††††††††† the same as they once were but I cant believe

††††††††† things have gotten to this.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Is it just me or isnít it a little strange that

††††††††† Father Adler was just murdered and then this

††††††††† happens.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well the thought had crossed my mind, a vendetta

††††††††† against Father Adler maybe?

†††††††††

MORT

††††††††† Or Lady Lloyd maybe? It seems to me that her and

††††††††† that fellow of hers have whipped up a storm back

††††††††† in England.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well thatís certainly possible, but where do the

††††††††† other deaths come into it?

 

MORT

††††††††† Hmm, I usually rely on you for this sort of thing

††††††††† Mrs. F!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well sorry to disappoint Mort, but Iím drawing

blanks on this occasion, except whatever is going on seems to be escalating.

 

NOAH

††††††††† And that cant be good.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† No, no it cant.

 

MORTS CELLPHONE RINGS, HE ANSWERS IT.

 

MORT

††††††††† Sheriff Metzger, oh Hi Dr Cassidy, thanks for

††††††††† getting back to me so early.Ok.And youíre

††††††††† sure about that?Ok, thanks again

 

HE HANGS UP AND SCRATCHES HIS HEAD.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort?

 

MORT

††††††††† Dr Cassidy just had Father Adlerís stomach

††††††††† contents examined and it appears that its

††††††††† entirely consistent with the tablets being

††††††††† ingested in powdered form.

 

NOAH

††††††††† So that meansÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Weíre 3 for 3 and judging by this scene the

††††††††† killer is getting more and more out of control,

††††††††† whichÖ.

 

JESSICA TRAILS OFF AS SHE SEES ONE OF THE UPROOTED GRAVESTONES, SHE APPROACHES IT, IT SAYS ďADLER, THOMAS, BORN 1931, DIED 1994, DEARLY BELOVED HUSBAND, FATHERĒ

 

††††††††† Well, thatís interesting.

 

NOAH

††††††††† What is it?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Do you remember this Mort?

 

MORT LOOKS AT THE STONE AND SHAKES HIS HEAD.

 

MORT

††††††††† Cant say I do.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, its just I saw the name and of course

††††††††† it made me think of Father Adler, they werenít

††††††††† related of course but its just I remember how

††††††††† Thomas Adler died, you must remember Mort?

††††††††† He lived in the old Mill, his family were all

††††††††† long gone and he was an invalid, quite well off

††††††††† and there was only a nurse that looked

††††††††† after him.

 

MORT

††††††††† Ah the Death Nurse! I remember now.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Remember what?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, Thomas Adler died of what appeared to be

††††††††† Natural causes and nobody would of thought

††††††††† anything of it except Mort got a report from

††††††††† several other Sheriffs offices.

 

MORT

††††††††† Thatís right, seems old Thomasís nurse was

††††††††† wanted in several states for offing several

††††††††† of her patients who coincidently left everything

††††††††† they had to her!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And as it turned out she almost got away with

††††††††† it here too, she had been poisoning poor Thomasí

††††††††† drinks for months.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Hmm, but what does that have to do with this?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well nothing, I think, yetÖ

 

SHE LOOKS AROUND THE CHURCHYARD AND SEEMS VERY WORRIED.

 

23.                     INT.JESSICAíS HOUSE.DAY

 

JESSICA IS BUSY WORKING ON HER COMPUTER, WHILE NOAH IS FIXING SEVERAL OF THE PHOTOS HE TOOK AT THE CHURCHYARD TO HER NOTICEBOARD.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Jessica, you want to help me choose a photo

††††††††† for the front page of the Gazette?

 

JESSICA GETS UP AND JOINS HIM AND BEGINS LOOKING AT THE PHOTOS, THEY ARE SILENT FOR A FEW MOMENTS.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Wait a minute, now, thatís strange, no, it cant

††††††††† beÖ

 

NOAH

††††††††† Whatís wrong Jessica?

 

SETH ENTERS THEN, HUFFING AND PUFFING.

 

SETH

††††††††† Heís going to be the death of me!

 

JESSICA

(LAUGHS)

††††††††† I donít suppose I need to ask who!

 

SETH

††††††††† No, you donít, heís changed the rota, didnít

††††††††† even bother to ask me! Everyone knows I go once

††††††††† a month Cray fishing of the Coast, gone all day

††††††††† and night! He said, of course if I found it too

††††††††† much he would take some of the slack! SOME OF THE

††††††††† SLACK! So I told him thereís no problem here!

††††††††† Shame though, I did enjoy that tripÖ

 

JESSICA

Oh Seth, Iím sorry. Seth, Noah and I were just looking at the photographs he took at the churchyard.

††††

SETH

††††††††† Shocking! I donít know whatís come of the world

††††††††† lately!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Indeed. No, somethingís niggling at me, do you

††††††††† remember Elise Mullen.

 

SETH

††††††††† Elise Mullen.Hm. Well, weíre going back some

††††††††† time I think.Wasnít she the one engaged to the

††††††††† McKenzie fellow that went to Vietnam and never

††††††††† came back.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Exactly.Now, do you remember what happened to

††††††††† her?

 

SETH

††††††††† I surely do, cause I was the one that had to cut

††††††††† her down.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Cut her down?You mean she?

 

SETH

††††††††† Aye, racked with grief she was, poor soul, tied

††††††††† a noose around her neck and threw herself over

††††††††† the balcony.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Oh my God, so thatís two.

 

SETH

††††††††† Two?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, you see it too.Seth, early today I saw

††††††††† one of the gravestones that was damaged, it was

††††††††† someone called Adler who was also poisoned.

 

SETH

††††††††† I donít get it.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Iím not sure I do either, its just there was

††††††††† Thomas Adler who was poisoned, just like Father

††††††††† Adler was this week, and now we see Elise Mullen

††††††††† who hung herself just like Noahís dad, William

††††††††† Mullen did.Donít you find that strange?

 

SETH

††††††††† Well I suppose so but it doesnít mean anything

††††††††† surely.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, I donít think so.

 

NOAH HAS BEEN STUDYING THE PHOTOS AGAIN; HE PULLS ONE OFF AND HANDS IT TO JESSICA.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Would it mean something if there was another?

 

JESSICA AND SETH LOOK AT A PHOTO OF THE TOMBSTONE OF ROBERT DAVIS.

 

SETH

††††††††† Robert Davis, ayah, remember that too.

 

 

NOAH

††††††††† Let me guess.Killed by a blow to the head.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Bar fight, over a girl I seem to remember.

 

SETH

††††††††† What does this all mean, Jess?

 

JESSICA LOOKS AT ALL THE PHOTOS.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Hopefully nothing, orÖ

 

SETH

††††††††† Or?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Or there are an awful lot of potential victims!

 

24.                     EXT.CHURCHYARD. DAY

 

JESSICA AND NOAH ARRIVE AT THE CHURCHYARD; THERE ARE LOTS OF PEOPLE LOOKING BUSY AS THEY TRY TO TIDY UP THE MESS.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Wow! Quite a turn out.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, I knew the Cabot Cove Restoration Society

††††††††† would be out in force to tidy this horrible mess

††††††††† up.

 

SHE APPROACHES THE CROWD AND SEES JOSH, THE MORTUARY ATTENDANT; HE IS KNEELING DOWN WORKING.

 

††††††††† Hello, itís Josh isnít it?

 

JOSH GETS UP AND WIPES DOWN HIS HANDS, HE LOOKS VERY NERVOUS.

 

JOSH

††††††††† Yes it is Mrs. Fletcher.

 

JESSICA

I thought it was you, I saw you the other night at the hospital.

 

JOSH

††††††††† Yeah, Iím the mortuary assistant.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, its kind of you to help the Restoration

††††††††† Society and we could use all the help we can

††††††††† get!

 

JOSH

††††††††† Listen, Iíd better get on, I havenít

††††††††† much time before my shift starts at the

††††††††† hospital.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh I know! Itís the same with Seth, never

seems to have any time off lately! Well it was nice seeing you again Josh.

 

JOSH

††††††††† You too Mrs. Fletcher.

 

JESSICA MOVES AWAY AND REJOINS NOAH WHO IS BUSY ROLLING UP HIS SLEEVES.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Time to right some wrongs Jessica, what do you

††††††††† say?

 

SHE SMILES AND BEGINS ROLLING UP HER SLEEVES.

 

 

 

25.                     EXT.CABOT COVE HARBOUR.DAY

 

MACK ANDERSON IS AGAIN ON A PLATFORM ADDRESSING A LARGE CROWD; MORT IS STANDING AT A DISTANCE WATCHING.

 

MACK

††††††††† And yet again good residents of Cabot Cove,

††††††††† your Sheriff lets you down, a murderer, a

††††††††† serial killer no less roams our good streets

††††††††† while Sheriff Metzger appears helpless to

††††††††† stop him, I urge you that come election time

††††††††† on Friday you show him and everyone else that

††††††††† you wont stand for it a moment longer and

††††††††† put your faith in someone who will return your

††††††††† town to the beautiful, peaceful place it once

††††††††† was.Thank you for your time, and Iíll see you

††††††††† at the polling station on Friday!

 

THERE IS LOUD APPLAUSE, MACK CLIMBS OFF THE PODIUM AND APPROACHES MORT.

 

††††††††† Good to see you Sheriff.

 

MORT

††††††††† Yeah? Wish I could say the same Anderson.

 

MACK

††††††††† Ooh Iím hurt Mort!

 

MORT

††††††††† Thatís Sheriff Metzger to you Anderson.

 

MACK

††††††††† Is it now? For how much longer I wonder? You

††††††††† must know your time is up here as Sheriff, why

††††††††† donít you accept your defeat graciously?

 

MORT

††††††††† Remember, it aint over till the fat lady sings.

 

MACK

††††††††† Maybe, though your apparent inability to track

††††††††† down a murderer in such a small town could just

††††††††† be the nail in your coffin, (LAUGHS) Pardon the

††††††††† pun!

 

 

MORT

††††††††† Glad you find it amusing that 3 people have been

††††††††† killed.

 

MACK

††††††††† Amusing? No sheriff, I donít, I donít find it

††††††††† amusing at all, but I cant argue that it could

††††††††† just be the stepping stone I need to get into

††††††††† office.And donít worry Metzger, come Saturday

††††††††† morning when I slip on your badge, you can leave

††††††††† the real police work of finding this killer to †††††††††† someone with ability, me!

 

HE WALKS OFF QUICKLY LEAVING MORT FUMING, DEPUTY ANDY PULLS UP IN HIS POLICE CAR.

 

MORT

††††††††† Andy, tell me you have something for me.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Maybe I do Sheriff, though youíre not going to

††††††††† like it.

 

MORT

††††††††† Why, what is it?

 

ANDY

††††††††† I just interviewed the night watchman at the Hill

††††††††† House motel, he didnít think anything of it

††††††††† before as we all thought it was a suicide, but he

††††††††† saw someone at the hotel that night that wasnít

††††††††† a guest.

 

MORT

††††††††† He did, who?

 

ANDY

††††††††† Thatís the bit youíre not going to like.

 

26.                     EXT.CHURCHYARD.DAY

 

JESSICA AND NOAH ARE WORKING ALONGSIDE THE OTHER VOLUNTEERS, MORTíS CAR PULLS UP.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh hello Mort, you come to help?

 

MORT

††††††††† Not right now Mrs. F.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Is there something wrong Mort? There hasnít

††††††††† been another murder has there?

 

MORT

††††††††† No, thank God.We do have a witness though

††††††††† who saw someone at the hotel the night of

††††††††† William Mullenís faked hanging.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Wow! Thatís great.

 

MORT

††††††††† Is it?Noah, do you still maintain you had no

††††††††† idea your father was in town.

 

NOAH

††††††††† What do you mean, Ďdo I still maintainí? Whatís

††††††††† this about, Sheriff?

 

MORT

††††††††† The night watchman at the Hill House Motel just

††††††††† positively identified you from a photograph,

††††††††† he claims he saw you hanging around outside the

††††††††† hotel.

 

NOAH

††††††††† What? Oh wait, of course, I can explain.

 

MORT

††††††††† Maybe so, but not here, why donít we go to my

††††††††† office.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort, youíre not arresting Noah, surely?

 

MORT

††††††††† Lets just say, for now, that heís helping us

††††††††† with our enquires, now you gonna come along

††††††††† son?

 

MORT LEADS NOAH TOWARDS HIS CAR, JESSICA QUICKLY FOLLOWS.

 

 

27.                     INT.SHERIFF METZGERíS OFFICE.DAY

 

MORT IS SITTING AT HIS DESK WITH NOAH AND JESSICA SITTING OPPOSITE.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Sheriff, I can explain.

 

MORT

††††††††† Iím all ears, Noah.

 

NOAH

††††††††† I was working late at the Gazette when I

††††††††† received a phone call from someone who

††††††††† said they had proof that a senior official

††††††††† had been taking kickbacks from a state

††††††††† building contractor to build a whole lot of

††††††††† condos in Cabot Cove.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And this caller? Did you know him?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well thatís the thing, he refused to give

††††††††† his name and I havenít really been here long

††††††††† enough so I didnít recognize his voice.

††††††††† Anyway, he said he would meet me in person

††††††††† and give me the proof, he said he would meet

††††††††† me at the Hill House Motel in 1 hour.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And you decided to go?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well I wasnít going to then I figured if it

††††††††† was true then it would make an excellent story

††††††††† for the gazette.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes of course, so what happened when you got

††††††††† there?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Absolutely nothing, I got there early and must

††††††††† have waited close to an hour and nobody turned

††††††††† up, in fact I didnít see a soul or hear a

††††††††† thing. Finally I gave up and went back to the

††††††††† office, I figured he got scared of or something

††††††††† and would call again.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And he didnít?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Nope, didnít hear another thing from him.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well Mort, that all seems quite straightforward.

 

MORT

††††††††† Does it? Why is this the first time weíve

††††††††† heard about it, we were all at Hill House the

††††††††† very next day and you never saw fit to mention

††††††††† youíd been there only a few hours earlier.

 

NOAH

(LOOKING LOST)

††††††††† SheriffÖ I, I suppose it just never occurred

††††††††† to me, I mean there wasnít anything to tell

††††††††† I went to meet someone and they didnít turn up.

††††††††† I guess the shock of seeing my dadÖI just didnít

††††††††† think about it.

 

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, of course, Mort you couldnít possibly think

††††††††† Noah went there to murder his father, for one

††††††††† thing he didnít even know he was there.

 

MORT

††††††††† Didnít he? We only have his word for that.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Sheriff, I promise you I had no idea my dad

††††††††† was in town, and why would I kill him?

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, its pretty obvious that you two didnít

††††††††† get on, and then of course thereís the question

††††††††† of the very large inheritance he left you,

††††††††† people have been murdered over a lot less.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh Mort, this is preposterous, what about the

††††††††† other 2 murders? You cant think Noah did those

††††††††† too?

 

MORT

††††††††† Why not?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well for what reason would he kill 2 perfectly

††††††††† innocent strangers?

 

MORT

I donít know Mrs. F.To cover up his crime maybe? Perhaps Father Adler or Aaron Davis saw something they shouldnít have, or maybe just to throw us of the reason for the original crime.

 

NOAH

††††††††† This is absurd Sheriff!

 

MORT

Maybe so, but until we check things out, Iíd prefer it if youíd agree to stay here in custody.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Are you arresting me sheriff?

 

MORT

As I said, for now, youíre just helping me with my enquires.Andy, take Noah out back would you?

 

ANDY APPROACHES AND TAKES NOAH BY THE ARM.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Come with me Noah

 

NOAH

††††††††† Jessica?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Itíll be ok Noah, everything will be fine, I

††††††††† promise.

 

ANDY LEADS A VERY PALE, WORRIED NOAH OUT INTO THE CELLS.JESSICA FACES MORT ANGRILY.

 

††††††††† Mort, I know we havenít known Noah very long,

††††††††† but I truly believe with all of my heart that

††††††††† he wouldnít have done any of this.

 

MORT

††††††††† I know youíve grown very fond of him Mrs. F,

††††††††† taking him into your home and all, but truth

††††††††† is we donít know anything about him really

††††††††† or what happened to him before he came to

††††††††† Cabot Cove.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Maybe not Mort, but I pride myself on being a

††††††††† good judge of character and I refuse to believe

††††††††† him guilty of such terrible crimes.

 

MORT

††††††††† Mrs. F, Jessica, I donít like this any more than

††††††††† you, but you have to see, I cant take the chance,

††††††††† until we completely exonerate Noah I cant take

††††††††† the chance of letting him roam free.We have the

††††††††† elections for new Sheriff in only 2 daysÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh Mort, I cant believe your locking Noah up just

††††††††† because of thatÖ

 

MORT

††††††††† As I was about to say, Mack Anderson is doing a

††††††††† good job of riling everyone up, if anything its

††††††††† safer for Noah here.

 

JUST THEN THE DOOR BURST OPEN AND MACK STORMS IN.

 

MACK

††††††††† Metzger, I just heard you arrested Noah Mullen

††††††††† for the murdersÖ

 

MORT

††††††††† What theÖ.!

 

MACK

††††††††† Well, is it true? Answer me!

 

MORT

††††††††† Listen here, Anderson, I donít have tell you a

††††††††† damn thing.

 

MACK

††††††††† Oh donít you? Take a look out of the window

††††††††† Sheriff.

 

MORT LOOKS OUT OF THE WINDOW; THERE IS AN ANGRY CROWD SHOUTING AND GEERING.

 

††††††††† I represent those people Sheriff and we have

††††††††† a right to know whatís going on.

 

MORT

††††††††† Ok, ok, Noah Mullen has not been arrested, but

††††††††† he is helping us with our enquires.

 

MACK

††††††††† And whatís that supposed to mean?

††††††††† I can assure you both of one thing, Noah Mullen

††††††††† is not going to get away with this just because

††††††††† he has money and friends in high places, if you

††††††††† two think youíre going to cover up the murder of

†††† †††† 2 good people of this town just because of

††††††††† your personal relationships with him then Iím

††††††††† here to tell you that I wonít let you!

 

JESSICA JUMPS UP, STRUGGLING TO KEEP HER COMPOSURE.

 

JESSICA

I can assure weíd do no such thing! And whatís moreIím outraged at the accusation, Iíve lived in Cabot Cove for over 40 years, while youíve only been here a matter of months, and I can tell you this, the people here are not only my friends, theyíre part of me! Part of who I am and what I stand for. And to insinuate that I would help a murderer walk free is not only insulting its slanderous.And let me also say this Mr. Anderson, what you are doing is a crime! Insighting the people of this town is wrong; Noah Mullen is innocent and will be proved to be so. Now, Iím leaving before I say something I will really regret. Mort.

 

SHE NODS AT HIM AND STORMS FROM THE ROOM LEAVING MACK LOOKING FLABBERGASTED.

 

 

 

 

28.                     INT.JESSICAíS HOUSE.NIGHT.

 

LATER THAT DAY JESSICA IS AT WORK IN HER STUDY ON THE COMPUTER, SETH ENTERS VIA THE KITCHEN DOOR, JESSICA GETS UP, HITS THE PRINT KEY AND GOES TO THE KITCHEN.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Glass of wine, Seth?

 

SETH

††††††††† I wont say no Jess.

 

SHE POURS THEM BOTH A GLASS AND HANDS HIM HIS.

 

††††††††† How you doing?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Me? Oh Iím fine.

 

SETH

††††††††† You sure?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh yes, I was just a little taken aback.

 

SETH

††††††††† Youíve grown quite fond of young Noah, havenít

††††††††† you?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I have Seth, I have, havenít you?

 

SETH

††††††††† I have, I like him, I like him a lot, stillÖ

†††††††††

JESSICA

††††††††† Donít say it, Seth.We both know that he didnít

††††††††† do any of this.I got so cross, Mack Anderson is

††††††††† using all of this for his own personal agenda, I

††††††††† donít even think he cares whether Noah is guilty

††††††††† or not, its just another way to get at Mort.

 

SETH

††††††††† Heís been at the hospital all afternoon, him and

††††††††† Dr Cassidy locked up in a room together, thick as

††††††††† thieves.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Thatís interesting, I had no idea they knew each

††††††††† other.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well all I know is that those 2 with their heads

††††††††† locked together can't be a good thing.

 

JESSICA

†††† †††† Yes, I see what you mean.

 

SETH

So, whatís the plan? If I know you at all I expect your hard at work proving that Noah couldnít of possibly had anything to do with these murders.

 

JESSICA SMILES AS SHE CROSSES TO THE STUDY TO RETRIEVE HER PRINTOUT. SHE HANDS IT TO SETH.

 

††††††††† Whatís this?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Iíve been online, thatís a list of the some 200

††††††††† odd people buried in the Cabot Cove Cemetery.It

††††††††† seems that they stopped burying people there

††††††††† about 25 years ago when the new crematorium

††††††††† opened.

 

SETH

††††††††† Thatís right, whatís the list for, Jess?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, we know that there are at least 3

††††††††† similarities between names and deaths with

††††††††† what has happened here lately.So, I thought

††††††††† that between you and I and the public records

††††††††† office we could figure out how each person

††††††††† died.

 

SETH

††††††††† What good would that do?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Maybe nothing, but itís somewhere to start

††††††††† Seth, we could cross reference the names with

††††††††† the current electoral roll.

 

SETH

††††††††† But thatís about 200 deaths that could occur

††††††††† Jess, how we supposed to prevent them?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well we may not be able to Seth, but it might

††††††††† help point us in the right direction, Iím

††††††††† hoping a pattern will present itself.

 

SETH

††††††††† Sounds like a long shot.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† It is, but its all weíve got right now.There

††††††††† has to be a link, a pattern of some kind, why

††††††††† is the killer choosing his victimsí this way?

††††††††† There has to be a reason for that.

 

SETH

††††††††† Or maybe not, crazy folks donít always do things

††††††††† logically.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh I donít agree, Seth, this feels perfectly

††††††††† thought out to me, its all thought out and

††††††††† planned, remember, we werenít really meant to

††††††††† discover that the 2 suicides had been staged.

 

SETH

††††††††† What about the soil, and the church vandalism.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, iíve been thinking about that, those things

††††††††† almost spoil it, donít you think? Two almost

††††††††† perfect murders where committed but the soil

††††††††† gave him away, which I believe means that the

††††††††† killer couldnít stop himself and that means

that the soil is important to him and to the reason behind what heís doing.

 

SETH

††††††††† I hope youíre right, Jess.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Me too, but in the meanwhile lets make a start

††††††††† on the list and hope something becomes obvious.

 

29.                     INT.SHERIFF METZGERS OFFICE.DAY

 

MORT IS SITTING WORKING AT HIS DESK, HE LOOKS VERY TIRED AND WORRIED, JESSICA AND SETH ENTER CARRYING SEVERAL BOOKS.

 

MORT

††††††††† I know that look Mrs. F.Youíre on a mission.

 

JESSICA

(LAUGHS)

††††††††† Well, Seth and I have been rather busy.

 

THEY SIT DOWN OPPOSITE MORT.

 

††††††††† Weíve been comparing the names on the

††††††††† gravestones with the current Cabot Cove

††††††††† electoral roll.

 

MORT

††††††††† What on earth for?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort, Iím convinced that that is how

††††††††† the killer is getting his victims, so

††††††††† I thought if I compared the names it would

††††††††† give us somewhere to start.

 

MORT

††††††††† And what do you suggest I do? Give all the †††††††††††††† people who are alive but have the same surname

††††††††† as someone who may be buried round the clock

††††††††† protection.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, granted thatís were my plan falls down

††††††††† a little.

 

MORT

††††††††† Ah-ha.So, just out of interest, how many names

††††††††† are we talking about here?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, there are 78 people registered in Cabot

††††††††† Cove with the same surnames.

 

MORT

††††††††† Oh, only 78! And that of course isnít counting

††††††††† visitors to town like William Mullen.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Please Mort, donít mock me, this is serious, Seth

††††††††† and I have gone through the list and we know how

††††††††† each of those people died, I know this isnít the

††††††††† best solution Mort, but I for one cant just sit

††††††††† around while the REAL murder walks free.

 

MORT

††††††††† Mrs. F, I know youíre very fond of Noah.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh I wish everyone would stop saying that! That

††††††††† has nothing to do with this, Noah is innocent and

††††††††† it seems that apart from Seth and I trying to

††††††††† help the only thing thatís going to clear him is

††††††††† if, no, when, the real killer strikes again.

††††††††† Mort, I know this election tomorrow has you

stymied, but this isnít you, Iíve known you a long time and youíre an exemplary officer of the law.Sitting and wallowing in self pity isnít you.

 

MORT

(PAUSES)

††††††††† Point taken Mrs. F.Iím sorry, I guess this is

††††††††† getting to me more than I thought.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Youíre only human, Mort.

 

MORT JUMPS TO HIS FEET.

 

MORT

††††††††† So what do you want me to do?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, I know its not ideal but I thought we

††††††††† could start by splitting up the list and asking

††††††††† the people on it if theyíve perhaps seen or heard

††††††††† anything suspicious or out of the ordinary.

 

MORT

††††††††† Seems a long shot, but what the heck, beats

††††††††† sitting here cooling my heels.

 

SETH

††††††††† Thatís the spirit Mort!

 

MORT

Say, out of interest, thereís no Metzgerís on that list of yours is there?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† No, no Metzgerís or Hazlittís for that matter,

††††††††† there is a Fletcher however, not Frank of course,

he was buried in his families cemetery, no the

only Fletcher is old Jediah Fletcher,

††††††††† died in 1898 of rickets, I think Iím safe from

††††††††† that one!

 

SHE WINKS AND GETS UP.

 

30.                     EXT.CHURCHYARD. DUSK

 

SETH AND JESSICA DRIVE UP, IT IS JUST STARTING TO GET DARK AND IT IS QUITE AN EERY ATMOSPHERE.

 

SETH

††††††††† Dunno what you wanted to come back here for at

††††††††† this time of day.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh Seth, itís a graveyard, thereís nothing to be

††††††††† scared of here!

 

SETH

††††††††† Scared! Whoís scared? Just donít see the point of

††††††††† being here.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, I just wanted to have another look to see

††††††††† if anything springs to mind, you never know,

††††††††† there may be something we missed. Ah, thereís

††††††††† Lady Lloyd.

 

ABIGAIL AND SEBASTAIN ARE HUDDLED IN A CORNER IN A DEEP CONVERSATION, AS THEY SEE JESSICA AND SETH THEY JUMP APART.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Mrs. Fletcher, why, its terribly nice to see

††††††††† you again. You too Dr Hazlitt.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And you, Lady Lloyd.Mr. Merrick.

 

SEBASTIAN

(NODS)

††††††††† Mrs. Fletcher, Doctor.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I hope this all hasnít been too much for you.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Not at all.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Livened the place up a bit if you ask me!

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† You must forgive my young assistant, I expect

††††††††† coming here with me to Cabot Cove wasnít really

††††††††† all he thought it would be.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Of course, after London, it must seem rather

††††††††† slow here.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† It certainly did until we had a serial killer

††††††††† on the loose! Mrs. Fletcher, I may steal your

††††††††† thunder here, I always fancied myself as a bit

††††††††† of a Patricia Cornwell, perhaps I can turn this

††††††††† sordid tale into a gruesome bestseller, I donít

††††††††† want to step on your toes of course!

 

JESSICA

Oh thereís no need to worry about that Mr. Merrick, I can assure you that I wouldnít dream of turning this into a book.

 

SETH

So, the restoration society have all finished, eh?

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Yes, they seem to have done a terribly good job,

††††††††† donít they?

 

THE GROUP BEGINS WALKING AROUND AND LOOK AT THE CHURCHYARD; IT IS MUCH TIDIER AND LOOKS MORE OR LESS THE SAME AS BEFORE.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† They have done a great job havenít they?

 

SETH

††††††††† That they have, youíd hardly know any thing

††††††††† had happened here.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Indeed, they managed to get the paint off most

††††††††† of the stones and those that were only partially

††††††††† damaged have been repaired in such a way youíd

††††††††† scarcely know anything had happened to them.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh that is good news.

 

THEY STOP AT A PILE OF RUBBLE.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† This was the only lot they couldnít do anything

††††††††† with, theyíll need completely new stones.

 

JESSICA BENDS DOWN AND BEGINS LOOKING AT ONE, IT IS WHAT REMAINS OF A GRAVESTONE FOR A MAN CALLED RALPH MURDOCH WHO DIED IN 1986.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† This one seems particularly bad.

 

SETH

††††††††† Ayah, the rest of them had a good going over

††††††††† but that one seems to have had a good hammering.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, its interesting, if you look at the others

††††††††† it does seem as if a hammer has just been taken

††††††††† to it, but this one seems to have been much more

brutal, you see? thereís not just one or two hits, it looks to me as if its been smashed over and over again until thereís barely anything left of it.

 

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Well, yes, I suppose, but I cant think that means

††††††††† anything.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† No, of course not, I think youíre writers mind is

††††††††† working overtime a bit there Mrs. Fletcher!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, yes, maybe.

 

SETH

††††††††† Ralph MurdochÖwhy does that name ring a bell to

††††††††† me?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I donít know, I was just thinking the same thing

††††††††† myself.

 

SETH

††††††††† Ah! Of course, he was the chap that lived here

††††††††† in the old Gardnerís cottage over yonder.

†††††††††

JESSICA

††††††††† Thatís right, he tended to the graveyard, dug

††††††††† the graves that sort of thing, Iíd clean

††††††††† forgotten all about him.

 

SETH

††††††††† Thatís not surprising, a dour man, a dour, dour

††††††††† man.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, always pale faced I seem to recall, if you

††††††††† saw him in the street heíd cross the road sooner

††††††††† than say hello to you.

 

SETH

††††††††† Thatís right, I donít think he ever paid me a

††††††††† visit!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† You must remember him Lady Lloyd, he would have

††††††††† been here when you were growing up.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Yes, I suppose I do, cant say I remember him

††††††††† though, father didnít like me going anywhere

††††††††† near him, not that I wanted to though, he gave

††††††††† me the creeps he did! Always standing around

††††††††† staring at a person.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Seth, wasnít he married with a child?

 

SETH

††††††††† Canít say I remember Jess, canít even remember

††††††††† him arriving in Cabot Cove and he was never a

††††††††† patient, so.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I wish I could remember, Iím sure there was

††††††††† a child, I was teaching at the high school at the

††††††††† time and Iím sure there was a problem of him

††††††††† refusing to enroll a child, saying his wife

††††††††† would home school, but for the life of me I cant

††††††††† remember ever seeing any of them about town.

 

SETH

††††††††† Nor me.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Well, as interesting as all of this is, I donít

††††††††† see what this has to do with our book Mrs.

††††††††† Fletcher.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Our book?

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Yes, Iíve decided, you can help me write it and

††††††††† Iíll cut you in!

 

31.                     INT.CABOT COVE HOSPITAL MORGUE.NIGHT

 

IT IS LATE AT NIGHT, ELI CASSIDY AND MACK ANDERSON ARE DEEP IN CONVERSATION, JOSH IS LISTENING AROUND THE CORNER, THEY DONíT REALISE HE IS THERE.

 

ELI

††††††††† Things are certainly working out well for you

††††††††† Mack.

 

 

MACK

††††††††† Yeah, you might say having a serial killer

††††††††† has been good for us both, eh, Eli?

 

ELI

††††††††† Iíll drink to that!

 

THEY CLASH THEIR BEER CANS TOGETHER.

 

MACK

††††††††† Whoíd of thought it would be so easy to win

††††††††† over a town like this?

 

ELI

 

I didnít thatís for sure! I thought it would be all inbreeding and ignorance, just shows you old

††††††††† friend, new faces that say the right things

††††††††† have a place anywhere.

 

MACK

††††††††† Indeed, in 8 hours the polling opens and in

††††††††† 24 hours Iíll be the new Sheriff of Cabot Cove,

††††††††† and with you as Chief of the hospital weíll have

††††††††† the whole place sown up.By the time the

††††††††† bulldozers start they wont know whatís hit them.

 

ELI

††††††††† True!

 

JOSH BACKS AWAY AND KNOCKS SOMETHING OVER, ELI AND MACK RUSH OVER.

 

††††††††† Ah, its only the mortuary assistant.

 

MACK

††††††††† You spying son?

 

JOSH

††††††††† No, no I wasnít!

 

MACK

††††††††† Good, cos it would be pretty dumb to cross me

††††††††† donít you think?

 

JOSH

††††††††† Yes, yesÖI, IÖ

 

MACK

††††††††† Calm down kid!

 

ELI

††††††††† You like your job Josh?

 

JOSH

††††††††† Yes, yes, I do Dr Cassidy.

 

ELI

††††††††† Thatís good son, Cabot Cove is under new

††††††††† management, youíd do well to keep next to us,

††††††††† come this time next year you wont know the

††††††††† place, we have deals in place for a whole new

††††††††† resort, a marina, golf courses the works, rich

folks with money to spend, rich old woman who

want a state of the art hospital equipped with

all the latest plastic surgery devices, now,

††††††††† what you heard here tonight, youíre not going

††††††††† to tell anyone, right?

 

JOSH

††††††††† I wouldnít say a word, Dr Cassidy, honest

††††††††† I wouldnít.

 

ELI

††††††††† Thatís good son, now why donít you join us

††††††††† in a drink.

 

HE HANDS HIM A BEER.

 

††††††††† I propose a toast, to my old college buddy,

††††††††† Mack Anderson, the new Sheriff of Cabot

††††††††† Cove!

 

32.                     INT. JESSICAS HOUSE.MORNING.

 

SETH ENTERS JESSICAS KITCHEN, SHE IS JUST COMING DOWNSTAIRS.

 

SETH

††††††††† Morning Jess.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Morning Seth, you sleep well?

 

SETH

††††††††† Like a log as always! You?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Not really, too much going on in this old

††††††††† brain of mine! Iíve just spoken to Mort, he

††††††††† and Andy have spoken to at least half of the

††††††††† names of the list and they havenít seen or

††††††††† heard anything strange.

 

SETH

††††††††† Hmm, Iím not sure what you expected from that.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, me neither, but its not that thatís been

††††††††† on my mind during the night, it was the

††††††††† gravestone of Ralph Murdoch, I cant help but feel

††††††††† that that stone was particularly singled out.

 

SETH

††††††††† Maybe, but I cant see as how that would be

††††††††† important.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Youíre right, of course, it could just be an

††††††††† accident that it was more badly attacked than

††††††††† the others, or it could mean something.It seems

††††††††† to me that these murders are quite deliberately

††††††††† planned and thought out, for that reason, the

††††††††† fact that the gravestone of Ralph Murdoch was

††††††††† practically destroyed could be relevant.

 

SETH

††††††††† And what do you propose to do about that?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, I thought after we went and voted weíd†††

††††††††† take Mort out for breakfast to cheer him up

††††††††† then I intend to find out something more about

††††††††† Ralph Murdoch, Iím sure there was a wife and

††††††††† child and I intend to find out what happened

††††††††† to them, this could just be the break weíve

††††††††† been looking for.

 

 

 

 

33.                     EXT.CABOT COVE HARBOUR.DAY

 

JESSICA AND SETH PULL UP IN SETHS CAR OUTSIDE THE TOWN HALL; THERE ARE CROWDS OF PEOPLE COMING IN AND OUT OF THE POLLING STATION.JESSICA AND SETH APPROACH THE BUILDING; MACK ANDERSON IS STANDING OUTSIDE MEETING AND GREETING EVERYONE, HE BEAMS WHEN HE SEES JESSICA AND SETH.

 

MACK

††††††††† Mrs. Fletcher! Dr Hazlitt! Well, its wonderful

††††††††† to see you.

 

SETH

††††††††† Hurumph!

 

MACK

(MOVING ON)

††††††††† I trust youíll be doing the right thing in there

††††††††† todayÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh we will Mr. Anderson, donít doubt that for

††††††††† a moment.

 

MACK

††††††††† Mrs. Fletcher, by your tone, can I assume that

††††††††† your vote isnít going in my direction?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† My vote, Mr. Anderson, is private.

 

SETH

††††††††† As is mine, but lets just say, youíre guess

††††††††† would be pretty accurate.

 

MACK

††††††††† Ah, the old guard of Cabot Cove! You both must

††††††††† realize by now that changes are happening in this

††††††††† town and we must move with the times, why, even

††††††††† Metzger knows when heís beaten, heís at least had

††††††††† the grace not to show up today.

 

SETH

††††††††† Perhaps thatís because heís doing what the good†††††††††† people of this town pay him to do, to be Sheriff

††††††††† not stand outside a polling station shaking

††††††††† hands!

 

JUST THEN, BOTH SETHíS AND MACKS CELLPHONES RING, THEY BOTH STEP AWAY AND ANSWER THEM.

 

††††††††† Hello, oh hello Mort, what! Youíre kidding me!

††††††††† Ok, Iím on my way.

 

HE HANGS UP AND PULLS JESSICA CLOSE TO HIM.

 

††††††††† Come on Jess weíve got to get moving.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† But why? Where to? We havenít voted yet.

 

SETH

††††††††† Later, weíve gotta meet Mort at the Travis

††††††††† house.

 

THEY RUSH AWAY; MACK IS HAVING AN ANIMATED CONVERSATION ON HIS CELLPHONE.

 

 

MACK

††††††††† Youíve gotta be kidding me!!

 

34.                     EXT.HOME OF ALAN TRAVIS.DAY

 

SETH AND JESSICA ENTER THE HOUSE OF ALAN TRAVIS, DEPUTY ANDY IS WALKING AROUND TAKING PHOTOGRAPHS, MORT IS STANDING NEXT TO A BATH WHERE THERE IS A BODY, THERE IS A TELEVISION IN THE BAD, SETH AND JESSICA APPROACH AND LET OUT A GASP WHEN THEY SPOT SOME SOIL NEXT TO THE BODY.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I donít believe it!

 

MORT

††††††††† Well believe it Mrs. F.

 

SETH BENDS DOWN AND BEGINS EXAMINING THE BODY.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I donít think I know him, who is he?

 

MORT

††††††††† Alan Travis, works over at the shoe

††††††††† factory, only been in town a couple

††††††††† of years I think.

 

JESSICA LOOKS IN HER BAG AND PULLS OUT A SHEET AND BEGINS LOOKING FOR THE NAME TRAVIS.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, here we are Millicent Travis, died

1963.         ElectrocutedÖ

 

SETH

Well judging by the television in the tub

we can have a guess how Alan died.

 

MORT

I just donít believe this is happening, and

on today of all days!

 

JESSICA

Mort, you donít mean that, this has nothing

to do with the elections.

††

 

†† MORT

Oh I know that, Iím sorry, Iím just struggling

here.

 

SETH STANDS UP AND WIPES HIS HANDS ON A CLOTH.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, Iíll be able to tell you more when I get

††††††††† him back to the morgue, but as I said, looks

††††††††† like he was electrocuted, time of death may be

††††††††† tricky due to the temperature of the water, but

††††††††† Iíd hazard a guess at not more than an hour or

††††††††† two, the waters still lukewarm.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And again, this could have so easily just been

††††††††† thought of as an accident were it not for the

††††††††† soil which makes me more sure than ever that

††††††††† the soil is important to the killer.Wait a

††††††††† minute, Mort, if this only happened in the last

††††††††† hour or two then that means Noah canít have been

††††††††† involved.

 

MORT

††††††††† True, Mrs. F, heís been in the office with me

††††††††† all morning.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† So, youíll free him.

 

MORT

††††††††† Why not, wanna come with me and see him, at

††††††††† least someoneís getting some good news today.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, Iíd like that very much, it will also give

††††††††† me a chance to talk to you about my theory.

 

MORT

††††††††† Mrs. F! You have no idea how much I want one of

††††††††† your theories right now!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, it may be nothing, but Iíd like you to

††††††††† help me track someone down, they may just hold

††††††††† the key to this whole thing.

 

35.                     INT. SHERIFFíS OFFICE. DAY

 

JESSICA AND MORT ENTER THE OFFICE. MORT GOES INTO THE OTHER ROOM AND A FEW MOMENTS LATER RETURNS WITH NOAH WHO LOOKS VERY PALE AND WORRIED, JESSICA RUSHES OVER TO HIM AND GIVES HIM A CUDDLE.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh Noah, its so good to see you!

 

NOAH

††††††††† You too, Jessica, I was getting a bit too used

††††††††† to solitary confinement.

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, it looks like youíre free to go Noah.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Free to go? How come? Oh wait, if you think

††††††††† Iím innocent that can only mean one thingÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, Iím afraid Alan Travis was found dead

††††††††† a little while ago.

 

NOAH

††††††††† And there was soil?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, there was.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well as happy as I am to be proven innocent

††††††††† I wish it hadnít come at such a high price.

 

MORT

††††††††† Well said kid.

 

NOAH

††††††††† We have to figure out a way to stop this.

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, Mrs. F has a theory.

 

NOAH

††††††††† You do? Thatís fantastic!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† It may be nothing, but I think with Mortís

††††††††† help we may be able to find a clue.

 

MORT

††††††††† Whatever it takes Mrs. F, Iíll call in whatever

††††††††† favors I can to find your missing persons.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Ok, I just have to pop across to the records †††††††††††† office and try and get some names and dates of

††††††††† birth, once we have them it will be a lot easier

††††††††† to track them down.

 

36.                     INT.CHURCH RECTORY.DAY

 

SEBASTIAN MERRICK IS STARING OUT OF THE WINDOW AT THE REPAIRED GRAVEYARD, LADY ABIGAIL ENTERS THE ROOM.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Ah Sebastian, there you are! Iíve been looking

††††††††† everywhere for you.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† You canít have looked very far Abigail, itís

††††††††† hardly a castle weíre staying in.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Well of course its only an expression darling,

††††††††† but why so grumpy?

 

SHE TRIES TO CUDDLE HIM BUT HE IS TENSE AND PULLS AWAY.

 

††††††††† Why whatís wrong Sebastian?

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Why does there always have to be something

††††††††† wrong, Abigail? Have you seen the churchyard,

††††††††† theyíve finished restoring it.Good as new

††††††††† you might say, or even better!

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Yes, of course, theyíve done a marvelous

††††††††† job, are you bored darling? Is that it? I know

††††††††† Cabot Cove must seem terribly dull to someone

††††††††† who was born in London.You mustnít fret

††††††††† darling, weíll be able to go home soon.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Home to what? Some sordid court case, you

††††††††† know the family are going to go after you for

††††††††† having an affair with the help, the MUCH

††††††††† younger helpÖ

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† So what darling? Since when has that worried

††††††††† you, besides, weíll be married by then, that

††††††††† will take the sting out of the tale rather.

 

SEBASTIAN

(LAUGHS)

††††††††† Married! Youíre kidding right?

 

ABIGAIL LOOKS DEEPLY HURT, SHE TURNS AWAY.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† But I thought thatís what you wanted

††††††††† Sebastian, darling, I love you so, thatís the

††††††††† only thing that kept me sane when that lecherous

††††††††† fool of a husband kept pawing at me, I closed

††††††††† my eyes and thought of you, of us, of us being

††††††††† together one day like this.Now that Iím free

††††††††† I assumed that you would want to marry me.

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† Abigail, your title is one of the best things

††††††††† about you, people notice you and look differently

††††††††† at someone when they have a title.Why on earth

††††††††† would you be so foolish as to want to give that

††††††††† all up?

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Its not foolish, Sebastian, it doesnít matter

††††††††† a damn to me, its you I love, its your name that

††††††††† I want!

 

SEBASTIAN

††††††††† My name! Pah! What good is that, my name doesnít †††††††† †††† mean anything, and itís certainly not something

††††††††† you should dream of taking!

 

ABIGAIL

Sebastian, I donít understand why youíre so angry, what haveI done that is so wrong?

 

SEBASTIAN

(ROARS)

††††††††† Oh just leave me alone woman.JUST LEAVE ME

††††††††† ALONE!

 

ABIGAIL RUNS FROM THE ROOM CRYING, SEBASTIAN LOOKS OUT OF THE WINDOW AGAIN AT THE GRAVESTONES.

 

37.                     INT. SHERIFFíS OFFICE.NIGHT.

 

MORT IS TALKING ON HIS PHONE, JESSICA AND NOAH SIT OPPOSITE.HE HANGS UP THE PHONE.

 

MORT

††††††††† My old friend at the NYPD has a contact at the

Social Security headquarters that may speed things up a little, heís getting right on it and will ring as soon as he finds something.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh thatís good news Mort.

 

SHE LOOKS AGAIN AT THE PIECE OF PAPER.

 

††††††††† I still cant believe I donít remember these

††††††††† people.Edith Murdoch and a son, John born

††††††††† in 1972.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well, you cant remember everything Jessica,

††††††††† I mean, some people are just unmemorable, you

††††††††† know, people that are there but not, always

††††††††† fading into the background.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, I know youíre right, but Cabot Cove used

††††††††† to be such a united town, but if youíre an

††††††††† outsider, its not always easy to fit in.

 

MORT

††††††††† And by all accounts this Ralph Murdoch fellow

†††† †††† wasnít the nicest man walking.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† No, he wasnít Iím sorry to say, as I said earlier

††††††††† Iím sure the only time I met Edith was at the

††††††††† school when she and Ralph came to take the child

††††††††† away.A small child if I remember correctly,

††††††††† very quiet and withdrawn, we were all concerned

††††††††† that home schooling was only going to make his

††††††††† shyness worse.

 

NOAH

††††††††† It sure can, I should know!

 

DEPUTY ANDY ENTERS.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Well thatís it, its done, the polling station

††††††††† is closed and theyíre counting the votes now, we††††

††††††††† should know one way or the other in an hour or

††††††††† two.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh dear! Iím so sorry, what with all this I

††††††††† completely forgot about it.

 

MORT

††††††††† Thatís ok Mrs. F, itís a moot point anyway.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh Mort, donít be so disheartened!

 

MORT

††††††††† Who me? Never! Well, all this waiting around

††††††††† is making me hungry, what say we order some

††††††††† pizza while we wait for news.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Thatís a great idea, Iím famished!

 

38.                     INT. SHERIFFíS OFFICE.NIGHT

 

IT IS A LITTLE LATER ON, MORT, NOAH, JESSICA AND ANDY ARE SITTING AROUND THE CONFERENCE TABLE FINISHING OFF THEIR MEAL, THE PHONE RINGS AND MORT GOES TO ANSWER IT.

 

MORT

††††††††† Sheriff Metzgerís office.Oh Hi, Brian, thanks

††††††††† for getting back to me so quickly,yeah, a

††††††††† serial killer in Cabot Cove, if Iíd know that I

††††††††† would of stayed in the Big Smoke! Ok, what you

††††††††† found? Oh brilliant, let me get a pen

††††††††† (BEGINS SCRIBBLING) Ok, ok, what about the kid?

††††††††† Are you sure? Nothing? Ok, well, thanks for

††††††††† that Bri, I owe you one, ok, I owe you

††††††††† another one! Catch you later buddy.

 

HE HANGS UP AND WALKS BACK TO THE TABLE.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Did your friend find something, Mort?

 

MORT

††††††††† Sure did, he got a current address from†††

††††††††† social services for Edith Murdoch, a nursing

††††††††† home in Rockport Point.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Rockport Point? I think I know where that is.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Its about 40 miles up the coast.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Ah, good, and the son Mort? What about the

††††††††† son?

 

MORT

††††††††† Well thatís the damndest thing, thereís nothing,

††††††††† no trace.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† No trace whatsoever? How is that possible?

 

MORT

††††††††† I donít know, but thereís definitely no current

††††††††† social security activity showing for the son,

††††††††† John.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Maybe he died.

††††

JESSICA

††††††††† No, I think that would of shown up, its more

††††††††† likely that he left the country.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Or changed his name.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, that is possible.

 

SETH COMES IN.

 

SETH

††††††††† Ah! I see you ate without me.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh sorry Seth, I thought you would have eaten

††††††††† something at the hospital.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, maybe I had a light snackÖ

 

MORT

††††††††† So, whatís the word doc?

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, just as I reckoned, death by electrocution,

††††††††† nothing suspicious to me, I sent some samples to

††††††††† the lab but thereís nothing to suggest anything

††††††††† other than a tragic accident.

 

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Except we know thatís not true.

 

SETH

††††††††† Ayah, we do.

 

THE DOOR BURSTS OPEN AND MACK ANDERSON STORMS IN, HE LOOKS VERY FLUSHED AND APPEARS TO BE DRUNK.

 

MACK

††††††††† Ah! There you are Metzger!

 

MORT

††††††††† Are you drunk Anderson?

 

MACK

††††††††† You bet Iím drunk, Iím celebrating!

 

MORT

††††††††† Celebrating? You meanÖ

 

MACK

††††††††† Oh you havenít heard yet Sheriff? They just

††††††††† announced the results of the election, it seems

††††††††† that come midnight tonight there will be a new

††††††††† person using that title.

 

HE STOPS AND LOOKS AROUND THE OFFICE.

 

††††††††† And the first thing heíll do is brighten up this

††††††††† dull, old fashioned place.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† You mean, you won the election?

 

MACK

††††††††† I did indeed Mrs. Fletcher, oh please, donít

††††††††† look so down about it, Iím sure weíll all get

††††††††† along very well together. Mind you, I must tell

††††††††† you here and now I wonít be needing your services

††††††††† anymore, the new Sheriff of Cabot Cove wont need

††††††††† the help of any old weather beaten busybodies.

 

SETH

††††††††† Why, you listen here youÖ

 

 

MORT

††††††††† Its ok doc, I got this, Andy get this buffoon out

††††††††† of here.

 

MACK

††††††††† You canít throw me out of here!

 

MORT

††††††††† Donít bet on it, my nameís still on the door,

††††††††† till midnight at least.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Come on Mack, you heard the sheriff.

 

MACK

††††††††† Get your hands off me boy, if you want to stay

††††††††† on as deputy youíd better figure out whoís your

††††††††† boss now.

 

ANDY

†††† †††† Well it sure isnít you, Sheriff Metzger goes

††††††††† then so do I, now goodnight.

 

HE PUSHES MACK OUT OF THE DOOR.

 

MORT

††††††††† Andy, you donít have to do that, youíre one of

††††††††† the best deputies this town has ever had.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Thanks for that Sheriff, but truth is, I couldnít

††††††††† work for that idiot if they paid me double,

††††††††† theyíre always looking for security guardsÖ

 

MORT

††††††††† I guess so.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh this is terrible, Mort, Iím so sorry.

 

MORT

Hey, donít sweat it Mrs. F, everything happens for a reason, this is just what was meant to be,

††††††††† thatís all.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Well, we should catch this killer before

††††††††† tomorrow, that would be a great kick in the

††††††††† teeth for Anderson!

 

MORT LOOKS AT HIS WATCH.

 

MORT

Sounds good to me, but that just gives us 6 hours.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, weíd better get a move on then, hadnít we?

††††††††† Seth, feel like a drive to Rockport Point?

 

SETH

††††††††† Not really, but I suppose that wasnít really

††††††††† a question.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† No, do you mind? I hope that the answer to

††††††††† all of this lies there.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well in that case, letís go!

 

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Noah, do you want to come with us?

 

NOAH

††††††††† Not really, can I go back to your place? No

†††† †††† offence sheriff, but after the beds here,

††††††††† Jessicaís lovely warm, comfy guest bed is calling

††††††††† out for me!

 

MORT

††††††††† No offence taken, theyíre not meant to be

††††††††† comfortable.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Will you be ok, Mort?

 

MORT

††††††††† Who me? Iíll be fine, donít you worry about

††††††††† me, just catch us a killer.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Iíll try! Mort, would you ring ahead and let

††††††††† them know weíre coming, I suspect theyíll be

††††††††† much happier to let us in after hours if the

††††††††† sheriff of Cabot Cove requests it.

 

MORT

††††††††† Sure thing Mrs. F, consider it one of my

††††††††† last duties as Sheriff of Cabot Cove!

 

JESSICA, SETH AND NOAH GET UP AND LEAVE.MORT LOOKS AROUND THE EMPTY OFFICE AND HIS EYES BEGIN TO WELL.

 

39.                     INT.SETHíS CAR.NIGHT

 

JESSICA AND SETH ARE IN SETHíS CAR HEADING TOWARDS ROCKPORT POINT.

 

SETH

††††††††† So, Jess, you put a lot of stock in this theory

††††††††† of yours?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I do Seth, itís the only thing that makes any

††††††††† sense about this.

 

 

SETH

††††††††† So, what are you thinking? That Murdochís widow

††††††††† or son is involved?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Itís a possibility Seth, or they may know

††††††††† something, or someone, Iím more convinced than

††††††††† ever that the seed for these crimes comes from

††††††††† the church.

 

SETH

††††††††† Then what about Lady Lloyd or that young gigolo

††††††††† of hers.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well of course that occurred to me, however, when

††††††††† I examined the gravestones Ralph Murdochís was

††††††††† definitely the most damaged, which suggests to

††††††††† me that maybe that was the first stone that

††††††††† was attacked.

 

 

SETH

††††††††† Ah, and the others were damaged to cover it

††††††††† up.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, thatís what Iím thinking,the fact that

††††††††† soil came from the same place, well, whatís

to say it didnít come from the churchyard? And

also, the soil was sprinkledÖ

 

SHE MAKES A HAND GESTURE TO SHOW THE SPRINKLING OF SOIL.

 

††††††††† Well, I believe that the sprinkling is symbolic

††††††††† somehow of the church, Iím more sure than ever

††††††††† that the crime originates there.

 

SETH

††††††††† But old Edith Murdochís in a nursing home by

††††††††† all accounts, I cant quite see her sneaking out

††††††††† at night to come to Cabot Cove and murder

††††††††† people.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† No, I agree that thatís not very likely, which

††††††††† brings us to her son.

 

SETH

††††††††† Ayah, the mysterious son that appears to have

††††††††† disappeared off the face of the earth.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, I mean, youíre right of course, he could of

††††††††† just gone abroad, but, on the face of it that

††††††††† does give us cause for concern.

 

SETH

††††††††† Born in 1972, eh?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Thatís right, which would put him in his mid 30s.

 

SETH

††††††††† Indeed, but I donít know about any strangers in

††††††††† town lately who fit into that category.

 

 

 

JESSICA

No, I donít either, but that said Seth, whoís to say he would be a stranger? I mean, thereís no record of John Murdoch, he could have been in Cabot Cove under an assumed name for any number of years and we wouldnít have been any the wiser.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, thatís a mighty scary thought! A homicidal

††††††††† maniac right under our noses.BRGHH!! Doesnít

††††††††† bear thinking about!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I agree, now, lets say, out of interest, that he

††††††††† has been in town for a while, is there anyone

††††††††† that jumps out at you?

 

SETH

††††††††† Mid 30s? Well it depends how you look at it

††††††††† woman, I mean, Deputy Andy Broom would fall into

††††††††† that age group!

 

JESSICA

(LAUGHS)

††††††††† I think we can rule Andy out of our enquiries,

††††††††† no, if the murderer has been living amongst us

††††††††† I donít believe it would have been for a long

††††††††† time.

 

SETH

††††††††† Why so?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, if Cabot Cove is the trigger for him

††††††††† then I donít believe he would have just festered

††††††††† for a long time, the urge to kill would be

††††††††† too strong, no, I believe he would be a relative

††††††††† newcomer, no more than a year or two, probably

††††††††† less.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, that would narrow it down.Any thoughts?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, what about Dr Cassidy? Heís only been at

††††††††† the hospital for a few months hasnít he?

 

SETH

††††††††† He certainly has! And it wouldnít surprise

††††††††† me in the least!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Seth! And what about Mack Anderson? Iíd put

††††††††† him as early 40s, but then again, looks are†††††††††††††† so often deceptive.

 

SETH

††††††††† True enough, but if you put it that way Jess

††††††††† you have to include Noah, he could just look

††††††††† young for his age!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Point taken Seth, oh, its no good, it could be

††††††††† anyone, there are so many new people in Cabot

††††††††† Cove these days.

 

SETH

††††††††† And donít forget Lady Lloydís young man, or

††††††††† the mortuary assistant Josh Thomas. Youíre right

††††††††† Jess, its impossible!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Thatís why Iím hoping that this visit to Edith

††††††††† Murdoch will tell us all we need to know.

 

40.                     INT.ROCKPORT POINT NURSING HOME.NIGHT

 

JESSICA AND SETH ENTER THE NURSING HOME FOYER, A MIDDLE AGED IRISH-AMERICAN WOMAN RISES TO GREET THEM, SHE IS MATRON MCGEE, THE CHIEF OF THE NURSING HOME.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Hello, my name is Jessica FletcherÖ

 

MATRON

††††††††† Of course it is! I recognized you instantly!

††††††††† The photos on your books donít do you justice,

††††††††† I must say! Oh, I canít tell you how much my

††††††††† ladies and gents here loving reading your books!

††††††††† Iím Matron McGee by the way.

††††

JESSICA

††††††††† Why, thank you. Itís a pleasure to meet you

††††††††† Matron.

 

SETH

††††††††† My name is Dr Hazlitt, tell me, did Sheriff Mort

††††††††† Metzger of Cabot Cove telephone you to let you

††††††††† know that we were coming?

 

MATRON

††††††††† Oh, he did, very exciting, we donít often get

††††††††† distinguished visitors.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I must apologize for the late hour, its rather

††††††††† important we speak to Edith Murdoch though.

 

MATRON

††††††††† I quite understand, urgent police business the

††††††††† sheriff said, I do hope Mrs. Murdoch isnít in

††††††††† any kind of trouble, I canít imagine it myself,

††††††††† frail old thing, wouldnít say boo to a goose,

††††††††† still, as I said to my husband Eddie, you canít

††††††††† always judge a book by its coverÖoh, ha-ha, see

††††††††† what I did there!...

 

SETH INTERJECTS IMPATIENTLY.

 

SETH

††††††††† Sorry to interrupt you Matron McGee, but is

††††††††† Mrs. Murdoch awake?

 

MATRON

†††† †††† Oh indeed, most of the old dears are, donít

††††††††† need as much sleep as they did, just sit in

††††††††† front of their television, and, oh you wouldnít

††††††††† believe the fuss they make if they miss

††††††††† their programs! Iíve wheeled Mrs. Murdoch into

††††††††† the sun room for you, youíll have a bit of

††††††††† privacy there.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Thank you, thatís very kind, just one other

††††††††† thing, matron, does Mrs. Murdoch have many

††††††††† visitors?

 

MATRON

††††††††† No, god love the old souls, not many of them

††††††††† get any visitors, families drop Ďem off here

††††††††† and that seems to be the end of it.

 

SETH

††††††††† Not even her son?

 

MATRON

††††††††† Her son? What on earth you talking about? Son?

††††††††† Never heard mention of him? Certainly not on

††††††††† our paperwork, next of kin is listed as a cousin

in Texas.No, no son mentioned to me at all and Iím sure as how she would of mentioned it, course, I know sheís a widow, loved that man she did! Loved him, talks so fondly of him she does. Well, if youíll follow me Iíll show you where she is.

 

SHE LEADS THEM TOWARDS THE SUNROOM.

 

41.                     INT. SUNROOM.NIGHT

 

MATRON LEADS JESSICA AND SETH INTO THE SUNROOM, IT IS DIMLY LIT, AT THE BACK SITTING IN A WHEELCHAIR IS A FRAIL WOMAN, THOUGH SHE LOOKS MUCH OLDER SHE IS ONLY IN HER 50S, SHE LOOKS WORRIED AS SHE STARES OUT OF THE WINDOW AT THE CRASHING WAVES.

 

MATRON

††††††††† Here they are Mrs. Murdoch, the visitors I told

††††††††† you about earlier, you remember?

 

EDITH MURDOCH WHEELS HERSELF AROUND, HER MOUTH IS TWISTED BITTERLY, SHE LOOKS AT SETH AND JESSICA WITH A MIXTURE OF HORROR AND ANGER, SHE SPEAKS IN A LOW WHISPY VOICE.

 

EDITH

††††††††† Of course I do, Matron.

 

MATRON

††††††††† Well, Iíll leave you folks to it,

††††††††† Iíll just be out there in the foyer if you

††††††††† need anything, so just give me a yell!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Thank you so much matron.

 

MATRON DEPARTS.

 

 

EDITH

††††††††† Why donít you sit down.

 

SHE GESTURES WITH A SHAKY HAND, JESSICA AND SETH DO SO.

 

††††††††† She didnít even offer you a drink.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh thatís fine, weíre fine.

 

SETH

††††††††† Mrs. Murdoch, its nice to meet you, my name

††††††††† is Dr Seth Hazlitt and this is JessicaÖ

†††††††††

EDITH

††††††††† I know who you are.People think because of

††††††††† the way I look that Iím senile or something,

††††††††† well, I may be a lot of things but thatís not

††††††††† one of them.

 

SETH

††††††††† Why, Iím sorry, I didnít mean to cause you

††††††††† any offence.

 

EDITH

††††††††† Tell me honestly, do either of you remember

††††††††† me?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† The truth?Well, I suppose no I donít, I mean

††††††††† I know we met, but I cant honestly say I

††††††††† remember it, I mean, it was such a long time ago.

 

EDITH

††††††††† YesÖ a long time ago, well thank you Mrs.

††††††††† Fletcher for your honesty, I donít suppose

††††††††† I was a memorable woman, as my husband used

††††††††† to say I was like a little field mouse,

††††††††† always scuttling about in the background.

††††††††† Oh, but I remember you all.I remember

††††††††† you all SO well.

 

SETH

††††††††† Mrs. Murdoch, Iím sorry if we wronged you,

††††††††† I can assure you that it certainly wasnít

††††††††† intended, if you think otherwise I wish

††††††††† youíd tell us.

 

EDITH

Ah, the good doctor, part of the family they used to say.

 

SETH

††††††††† I like to think that Iíve done that for

††††††††† my patients over the years.

 

EDITH

††††††††† And yet you donít remember me?

 

SETH

††††††††† Whatís to remember? As I recall you wouldnít

††††††††† even let me look at you when you home birthed

††††††††† your child, your husband barely let me

††††††††† in the door, damn quack he called me.

 

EDITH

††††††††† And you didnít think you had a responsibility

††††††††† towards me and my child?

 

SETH

††††††††† Of course I did, but you were there that

††††††††† day, I didnít see you overrule your husband,

††††††††† all you had to do was say, please check

††††††††† everything is ok Dr Hazlitt.

 

EDITH

††††††††† Over rule my husband! HA!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mrs. Murdoch, I donít quite know whatís going on

††††††††† here, but I can assure you that Seth has done

††††††††† his very best for the townsfolk of Cabot Cove

††††††††† for almost 40 years.You seem to be under

††††††††† the impression that we shunned you and Iím

††††††††† sorry, that simply wasnít true, WE tried to

††††††††† involve you in the town, I only ever met you

††††††††† on a few occasions and each time I tried to

††††††††† engage you, whether it be about your childís

††††††††† schooling or trying to involve you in town

††††††††† activities, I know that for certain, I would

††††††††† never just ostrise somebody for no reason,

††††††††† I tried, we all tried, your family just didnít

††††††††† want to know, and we lost touch with you, Iím

††††††††† sorry for that, but frankly there are only

††††††††† so many times you can have a door slammed in

††††††††† your face before you decide not to knock on it

††††††††† again.

 

THEY LAPSE INTO SILENCE.

 

EDITH

††††††††† Well, I suppose I asked for that!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Iím sorry if I sounded harsh, I can assure you

††††††††† we didnít come here to cause you any painful

††††††††† memories.

 

EDITH

††††††††† Ah, but thatís exactly what you did do.No,

††††††††† you must excuse me, you see, Iíve been sitting

††††††††† here a long time, sitting here in this same

††††††††† chair watching the same waves crash against the

††††††††† same rocks for what seems like an eternity.

††††††††† Time like that isnít necessarily good for a

††††††††† person, it gives you time to right the wrongs

††††††††† of your life, in your own mind only of course,

††††††††† you know, you get the chance to tell off those

††††††††† that wronged or hurt you, Iím sorry to say that

††††††††† youíre the first people Iíve seen in over a

††††††††† decade, and accordingly it appears that the flood

††††††††† gates opened! Strangely, it wasnít nearly as

††††††††† satisfying as I thought it would be.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† No, it so often isnít.

 

SETH

††††††††† Iím sorry Mrs. Murdoch, but what is it that we

††††††††† did exactly?

 

EDITH

††††††††† IÖIÖ

 

JESSICA

†††† †††† He hit you didnít he? When did it start?

 

EDITH

††††††††† Start? (LAUGHS) Well it started the day we

††††††††† were married! Oh you see all these programs

††††††††† now saying, if he hits you he doesnít love

††††††††† you, leave, that sort of thing, well, for me,

††††††††† that was never an option.I came from God

††††††††† fearing people you see and I knew nothing

††††††††† of the world, or men for that matter, so when

††††††††† Ralph took me for his bride it was the happiest

††††††††† time of my life, he also was a God fearing

††††††††† man, so that night when he took me to his bed

††††††††† and beat me till I bled, I believed, that this

††††††††† was Gods will.

 

SETH

††††††††† Godís will!

 

EDITH

††††††††† Dr Hazlitt, I didnít know any different, my

††††††††† family adored Ralph, there was a time, weíd

††††††††† only been married a matter of weeks when he

††††††††† beat me so bad I couldnít open my eyes, I told

††††††††† my father and do you know what he said? What did

††††††††† I do to deserve it? I knew then that this was

††††††††† my lot, my father did speak to Ralph, from that

††††††††† day on he hit me everywhere BUT my face.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, Iím so sorry, so terribly sorry.

†††††††††

EDITH

††††††††† Donít pity me Mrs. Fletcher, donít you dare,

††††††††† I didnít want it then and I donít want it now,

††††††††† youíre right in a way, I didnít want any of you

††††††††† coming near me.

 

SETH

††††††††† Shame is a terrible thing.

 

EDITH

††††††††† I wasnít ashamed, it was easier thatís all, if

††††††††† no one bothered us then I could just keep things

††††††††† on an even keel, Ralph was always much angrier

††††††††† when there were other people around.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And your son?

 

AGAIN THEY LAPSE INTO SILENCE.

 

 

EDITH

††††††††† That was a mistake that should never of

††††††††† happened.I tried so hard not to get pregnant,

††††††††† but really the truth of it was I knew nothing

††††††††† about the world so Iím amazed it happened only

††††††††† once, though of course, there were times when

††††††††† a particularly bad beating probably took care

of that.Yes, my son should never have been born.

 

SETH

††††††††† You canít mean that?

 

EDITH

††††††††† Oh but I do, I assure you of that, from the

††††††††† moment John was born Ralph hated him, I never

††††††††† really understood why, it was as if John

††††††††† knew not to cry, what it would cause if he

††††††††† did, but from the second he was born it

††††††††† was as if Ralph saw something in him, I donít

††††††††† know whether that was the devil or me, but

††††††††† whatever he saw he seemed to want to beat it

††††††††† out of him.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh my good lord, I know the townspeople didnít

††††††††† see any of this, but you lived on the church

††††††††† grounds, wasnít Father Adler witness to any

††††††††† of it?

 

EDITH

††††††††† Witness? Who knows? He certainly didnít say

††††††††† anything if he did, but John and I learnt

††††††††† how to keep quiet and fade into the background,

††††††††† IÖfor the longest time I took the beatings for

††††††††† him, but, but, there were times when my body

††††††††† ached so much that when he hit John, IÖI, well,

††††††††† when my time comes Iíll answer for that and

††††††††† answer for it gladly.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I know its easy to blame yourself, but you

††††††††† must try to forgive yourself, whatever you did

††††††††† or didnít do is not your fault, the beatings

††††††††† and the torment shook that out of you, we, none

††††††††† of us can say, honestly, what we would do in

††††††††† such circumstances.

 

SETH

††††††††† Thatís true.I wish Iíd stepped in, I knew,

††††††††† I knew I should have insisted in seeing you and

††††††††† your son, but the truth was, I met so many

††††††††† people that came from a time and a place where

††††††††† doctors like me were not wanted that I didnít

††††††††† want to fight it, Iím sorry that I didnít fight

††††††††† it Mrs. Murdoch, please believe that I truly am.

 

EDITH

††††††††† Thank you for saying that Dr Hazlitt, it really

††††††††† does mean a lot, but you know the truth is,

††††††††† if anybody had asked me then I would of denied it

††††††††† to the heavens! I loved my husband for better

or for worse, I would never have told, never.Even now I donít speak of it, if you heard me talking to the old folks here youíd think Iíd had the happiest marriage ever.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, sometimes, its easier to survive something

††††††††† that way.

 

EDITH

††††††††† Yes, heís been gone a long time now, and thereís

††††††††† not a day passes when I donít FEEL him.I mean,

††††††††† really feel him, feel his hands on me, hitting

††††††††† me, touching me, making love to me, its all just

††††††††† a jumble of feelings, of smells, of memoriesÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† How did he die?

 

EDITH

(LAUGHS)

††††††††† Slowly! Some might say it was providence, cancer,

††††††††† slow eating cancer, he died in misery, painful

††††††††† misery. And you know what was cruelest about it

††††††††† all?

 

SETH

††††††††† What?

 

EDITH

††††††††† It didnít mean anything. I thought it would, I

††††††††† thought it would be the ultimate revenge, payback

††††††††† for everything he did to me and John but it

††††††††† didnít, it didnít mean anything, just more work

††††††††† for me in looking after him.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† About John.

 

EDITH

††††††††† Yes, I thought it must have been him you came

††††††††† about.Iím sorry though, I cant help you.

 

SETH

††††††††† Why? What happened to him?

 

EDITH

††††††††† I donít know, I honestly donít know, he left when

††††††††† he was 16 and never looked back, oh, he tried to

††††††††† convince me to go with him but it was too late

††††††††† for me then, it was too too late, we both knew

††††††††† that if he went his father would never let him

††††††††† come back, so we said goodbye and in many ways

††††††††† it was the happiest day of my life, one of us

††††††††† was free.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† But what happened when Ralph died? Didnít John

††††††††† come back?

 

EDITH

††††††††† No, he didnít, I donít even know if he ever

††††††††† even knew his father was dead, and I had no

††††††††† idea how or where to contact him.

 

SETH

††††††††† AhÖ

 

 

EDITH

††††††††† So, tell me the real reason youíve come here to

††††††††† see me.Youíre looking for John arenít you? Why?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, its not that necessarily, its just well,

††††††††† some things have been happening in Cabot Cove

††††††††† and they seemed to originate in the churchyard,

††††††††† several of the gravestones where badly damaged,

††††††††† your husbandís was one of the worst hitÖ

 

EDITH

††††††††† Oh how John hated that graveyard! Come rain, or

††††††††† shine or snow his father would have him out there

††††††††† knee deep in mud digging the graves, he screamed

††††††††† and screamed to get out of it!

 

SETH AND JESSICA EXCHANGE KNOWING LOOKS.

 

††††††††† Iíve been reading about the goings on in Cabot

††††††††† Cove, the murders, you think John did them

††††††††† donít you?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, thatís just it, we donít know anything,

††††††††† itís just that all roads seem to lead us back

††††††††† to the churchyard, at the very least, we would

††††††††† like to find John just to eliminate him.

 

SETH

††††††††† Tell me, do you think John capable of such

††††††††† a thing?

 

EDITH

††††††††† Who me? I told you, Iíve not laid eyes on the

††††††††† child since he was 16 years old, I can

††††††††† remember the look in his eyes as he walked

††††††††† out that door.Hatred, pure hatred, the same

††††††††† eyes I saw on his father, I always hoped that

††††††††† no matter where John went he found a way of

††††††††† dimming those lights of evil.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And youíre sure there nothing you can tell us?

††††††††† No relatives he may of gone to?

 

 

EDITH

††††††††† No, my family are all long gone, I have a cousin

††††††††† that he wouldnít of even know about, no, for all

††††††††† I know he may be dead.Long dead.No, all I

††††††††† have left of my son is a tattered old photograph.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Photograph? Can we see it?

 

EDITH NODS AND PULLS A WORN OLD PHOTO OUT OF HER POCKET, SHE HANDS IT TO JESSICA AND SETH WHO STUDY IT INTENTLY.

 

SETH

††††††††† Darnit! I donít know this fellow at all.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well, he must of only been 14 or 15 here so he

††††††††† most surely will have changed, but I donít know

††††††††† Seth, thereís something about the chin, and those

††††††††† eyes.

 

SETH

††††††††† Are you telling me you know who this is woman?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I cant be 100% sure, but yes, Seth, I think I

††††††††† know who this, and yes, heís in Cabot Cove

††††††††† right now!

 

42.                     INT.JESSICAíS HOUSE.NIGHT

 

NOAH IS FAST ASLEEP IN JESSICAíS GUEST ROOM; DOWNSTAIRS SOMEBODY SMASHES THE GLASS ON KITCHEN DOOR, REACHES IN, OPENS THE DOOR AND HEADS INTO THE HOUSE.UPSTAIRS NOAH IS AWAKEN BY THE SMASH, HE SITS UP TRYING TO GET HIS BEARINGS, THEN HE HEARS A FLOORBOARD CREAK.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Jessica, is that you?

 

THERE IS NO ANSWER, HE GETS UP AND LOOKS OUT OF THE DOOR, THROUGH THE HALLWAY MIRROR HE CAN SEE THAT SOMEONE DRESSED IN BLACK IS CREEPING UP THE STAIRS, NOAH GOES BACK TO INTO THE ROOM AND TOWARDS HIS CELLPHONE, HE PICKS IT UP AND DIALS A NUMBER, IT RINGS.

 

††††††††† Hello? Sheriff Metzger? Oh thank God! Its Noah

††††††††† Mullen here, listen, someone has just broken

††††††††† into Jessicaís house and theyíre coming upstairs,

††††††††† get here as soon as you canÖ

 

NOAH IS CUT OFF AS HE FALLS TO THE GROUND AFTER BEING STRUCK ON THE HEAD.

 

 

 

MORT

(VOICE FROM THE PHONE)

††††††††† Noah? Noah? Are you still there?

 

43.                     INT.SETHíS CAR.NIGHT.

 

SETH AND JESSICA ARE DRIVING ALONG IN SETHíS CAR.

 

SETH

††††††††† Are you quite sure you recognized him Jess?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Iím as sure as I can be, arenít you Seth?

 

SETH

††††††††† Well I wouldnít have been unless you said it, but

††††††††† yes, now that you have, I can see it.

 

JESSIA

††††††††† Good, Iíll ring Mort.

 

SHE TAKES OUT HER CELLPHONE AND CALLS MORT.

 

††††††††† Hi Mort, its Jessica, IÖwhat! What do you mean

††††††††† my house? Is everything ok?Ok, weíll be right

††††††††† there!

 

SHE HANGS UP.

 

SETH

††††††††† Whatís up Jess?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort just took a call from Noah, it seems

††††††††† somebody has just broken into my house, oh God,

††††††††† Mort you donít thinkÖ

 

SETH

††††††††† Donít even think about that Jess, lets just

††††††††† get there as soon as we can.

 

SETHíS CAR ACCELERATES TOWARDS CABOT COVE.

 

 

 

 

 

44.                     INT.JESSICAíS HOUSE.NIGHT

 

SETHíS CAR SCREECHES TO A HALT OUTSIDE JESSICAíS HOUSE, SHE AND SETH RUN IN, ALL THE LIGHTS ARE ON, MORT AND ANDY ARE LOOKING AROUND.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Mort!

 

MORT

††††††††† Oh hey Mrs. F, you guys got here quick!

 

SETH

††††††††† Luckily the entire sheriffís department seems to

††††††††† be here.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Whereís Noah?

 

MORT

††††††††† Thereís no sign of him Mrs. F.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Thereís definitely sign of a break in though and

††††††††† what appears to be drag marks from upstairs but

††††††††† we cant find any trace.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well where on earth would they go?

 

THEY LAPSE INTO SILENCE, JESSICA SINKS INTO A CHAIR.

 

MORT

††††††††† I donít understand this, why would Noah be taken?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh dear!

 

JESSICA LOOKS INTO HER PURSE AND RETRIEVES THE LIST.

 

††††††††† There is another Mullen on the list, I must admit

††††††††† I didnít really think anything of it, it was

††††††††† a child that died in infancy, a cot death, there

††††††††† were lots more more feasible people but of course

††††††††† that could mean Noah is going to be suffocated!

 

 

MORT

††††††††† Donít beat yourself up Mrs. F, how were you to

††††††††† know?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I should have Mort, I should have.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, none of this helps us track them down.

 

THERE IS SILENCE FOR A FEW MOMENTS.

 

JESSICA

Wait! The morgue, we have to try the morgue.

 

MORT

††††††††† The morgue? Whatís that got to do with any of

††††††††† this?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Weíll explain on the way Mort, but I think we

††††††††† may know who is behind all of this.

 

45.                     INT.CABOT COVE MORGUE.NIGHT

 

THE MORGUE IS DIMLY LIT, NOAH IS TIED TO A GURNY, A MAN STANDS IN THE CORNER WATCHING HIM, HE STEPS FORWARD WITH A CUSHION AND APPROACHES NOAH, HE IS JUST ABOUT TO PUT THE CUSHION OVER HIM, NOAH BEGINS STRUGGLING WILDLY TO NO AVAIL, JUST THEN THE DOOR BURSTS OPEN AND JESSICA, SETH, MORT AND ANDY BURST IN. JESSICA FLICKS THE LIGHT ON AND THE WHOLE ROOM IS ILLUMINATED.

 

MORT

††††††††† Stop what youíre doing!

 

HE RAISES HIS GUN, JOSH THOMAS, THE MORTUARY ASSISTANT STEPS BACK IN SHOCK, HE RECOVERS HIS COMPOSURE AND GRABS A SCALPEL AND HOLDS IT AGAINST NOAHíS NECK.

 

JOSH

††††††††† Step back!

 

MORT

††††††††† Woah! Now calm down Josh, just keep it cool.

 

 

JOSH

††††††††† Donít tell me what to do! People are always

††††††††† telling me what to do! Now, no more, Iím

††††††††† in control.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Josh, please calm down, please, you donít want

††††††††† to do this, I know you donít want to do this.

††††††††† Weíve been to see your mother John, weíve been

††††††††† to see your mother and she misses you very much.

 

JOSH

††††††††† How do you know about that? I havenít used that

††††††††† name in a long, long time.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† It was the soil John, we couldnít figure out why

††††††††† there was soil at the feet of the victims,

††††††††† especially those that appeared to be suicide.

††††††††† Why did you do that?

 

JOSH

††††††††† I donít know, I couldnít stop myself, it just

††††††††† made me remember.

†††††††††

JESSICA

††††††††† Your mother said that your father made you dig

††††††††† the graves, is that where this all started!

 

JOSH

††††††††† YES! I hate you all so much, not one of you

††††††††† helped me, not her, not you, not the doctor,

††††††††† not the sheriff, I looked at you all desperately

††††††††† hoping you would see what he was doing to me,

††††††††† and not one of you did, not even her, my

††††††††† bitch of a mother.

 

SETH

††††††††† Son, weíre all sorry for what happened, truly

††††††††† we are, if there was anything we could have done

††††††††† I promise you we would have, we didnít know, and

††††††††† while I know thatís not much comfort to you

††††††††† itís the truth, but none of that compares to

††††††††† this, to what youíve done.

 

JOSH

††††††††† Ha! I made you take notice of me though! You

††††††††† cant ignore me! I hate this town, all nice on

††††††††† the outside, all crying over the coffins of

††††††††† loved ones as they were lowered into graves

††††††††† I dug until my hands bled, and then what?

††††††††† Back home for more beatings? You all looked but

††††††††† you never saw! But I saw everything, I saw you

††††††††† all standing there burying your loved ones and

††††††††† I remember the names, hating each and every one

††††††††† of them for the love theyíd known, when I

††††††††† escaped this hole of a town when I was 16 I knew

††††††††† Iíd be back one day and get my revenge!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† And weíre truly sorry, if we could take it back

††††††††† we would, but we canít John, we really canít, and

††††††††† for whatever reason you think youíre doing all

††††††††† of this it just isnít worth it, it isnít, too

††††††††† much innocent blood has been spilt already,

there canít be anymore, not in your fatherís name.Heís been dead a long time John, evil only hangs around if we let it.Now please, let us get you the help you need, I know your mother would love to see you.

 

JOSH

††††††††† Her! I hate her almost as much as I hate him,

†††† †††† she let him do it, she should have stopped him!

 

SETH

††††††††† Oh, thatís not true, your mother was the same

††††††††† as you, innocent in it all, neither of you stood

††††††††† a chanceÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† John, why did you try to frame Noah? It just

††††††††† didnít make any sense.

 

JOSH

(laughs)

††††††††† It made perfect sense to me! Youíre right though †††

††††††††† I didnít intend to, I wanted to take the credit

††††††††† for all of this, truly I did, I wanted you all to

††††††††† find out it was me and why I did it, why you had

††††††††† to pay for abandoning me as a child, no, it was

††††††††† all an accident really, I read the Gazette about

††††††††† this new hotshot kid in town, rich kid from a

††††††††† rich family, good looking and popular, everything

††††††††† I never had, everything I never could be.

 

NOAH

††††††††† You know nothing about me, or my life, if you did

††††††††† youíd know that appearances can be deceptive!

 

JOSH

††††††††† Oh spare me your boohoos rich boy!

 

NOAH

††††††††† I donít understand though, why me, why my dad?

 

JOSH

(laughs again)

††††††††† As I said, it was all a bit of an accident, you

††††††††† see Iíve been living in one of the apartments

††††††††† behind the Hill House, Iíd just been reading all

††††††††† about you when I overheard your father talking

††††††††† on his cellphone about you. It was then that I

††††††††† knew he would be the first. Quite a stroke of

††††††††† luck, I got to start my revenge and wipe the

††††††††† smirk of your face. I bet youíd like to know what

††††††††† he was saying on the telephone? Or what he said

††††††††† before he died? You want me to make it better

††††††††† and tell you he was proud of you?Well forget it

††††††††† this aint no fairytale, there are no happy

††††††††† endings!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Stop this! This is cruel!

 

††††††††† JOSH

††††††††† Welcome to my world Mrs Fletcher! Perhaps if you †††

††††††††† good townsfolk had paid as much attention to me

††††††††† as you did to Noah Mullen then this may never

††††††††† have happened!

 

JUST THEN THE BACK DOORS SWING OPEN AND ELI CASSIDY WALKS IN, MOMENTARILY JOSH LOOKS BACK, THIS GIVES MORT AND ANDY THEIR CHANCE, THEY RUSH FORWARD AND TACKLE HIM TO THE GROUND, KNOCKING THE SCALPEL FROM HIS HAND AND PUTTING HANDCUFFS ON HIM.

 

ELI

††††††††† What on earths going on here!

 

 

MORT

††††††††† Josh Thomas, Iím arresting you on suspicion

††††††††† of the murders of William Mullen, Frank Adler,

††††††††† Aaron Davis and Alan TravisÖ

 

HE AND ANDY BEGIN TO LEAD HIM AWAY, HE STRUGGLES VIOLENTLY.

 

ELI

††††††††† Josh? What are they talking about?

 

JOSH LAUGHS HYSTERICALLY.

 

JOSH

††††††††† Who cares? Theyíre all fools, youíre all fools,

††††††††† you didnít see what I was doing, just as they

††††††††† donít see what you and Mack Anderson are up

††††††††† to, stripping the town and turning it into a new††††

††††††††† marine development and making yourself a small

††††††††† fortune out of it! It was almost worth watching

††††††††† you get away with it, but hey, if Iím going down

††††††††† then youíre all coming with me!

 

ELI

††††††††† Why youÖ

 

MORT GIVES HIM A PUZZLED LOOK AS HE AND ANDY DRAG JOSH OUT.

 

SETH

††††††††† Is that true Cassidy?

 

ELI

††††††††† So what if it is? Its about time this town was

††††††††† pulled into the new millennium, Mack and I are

††††††††† going to see to it that it happens!

 

SETH

††††††††† Over my dead body!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh enough of this! Noah!

 

SHE RUSHES FORWARD, SETH JOINS HER AND THEY FREE NOAH, HE STRUGGLES TO HIS FEET LOOKING VERY SHOCKED.

 

NOAH

††††††††† My God, I cant believe what just happened here!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† I know, but its ok now, everything is going to be

††††††††† ok.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Josh did all of this? It doesnít make sense.

 

SETH

††††††††† No, it doesnít, I donít think that boy ever

††††††††† stood a chance.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† No, but at least heís caught now and will get

††††††††† the help he needs, nobody else need suffer

††††††††† because of what Ralph Murdoch started.

 

46.                     INT.JESSICAíS KITCHEN.DAY

 

IT IS SOME DAYS LATER, JESSICA IS SITTING AT HER KITCHEN TABLE DRINKING COFFEE WITH NOAH, LADY ABIGAIL AND SETH.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† I cant quite believe what has happened right

††††††††† here in Cabot Cove.

 

JESSICA

Indeed, I can assure you its not an everyday thing.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† I should hope not!

 

SETH

†††† †††† And what about you Lady Lloyd, are you heading

††††††††† back to blighty soon?

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† You know Dr Hazlitt, I canít help think that

††††††††† despite everything thatís happened here, that

††††††††† Cabot Cove is a pretty terrific place to live.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh it is, it really is.

 

SETH

††††††††† And your friend? Your assistant is it?

 

ABIGAIL

(LAUGHS)

††††††††† Your very discreet Dr! No, young Sebastian

††††††††† left this morning, resigned to the folder in my

††††††††† life marked, silly foolish mistakes, Iím not

††††††††† the first silly middle aged woman thatís been

††††††††† flattered by the attention of a young stud of

††††††††† a man, but it seems that Sebastian was more fond

††††††††† of my title and what it brought him, a boy born

††††††††† in the gutters is only really interested in

††††††††† himself and how high he can climb, well, I may

††††††††† have been foolish but that doesnít mean I had

††††††††† to continue to be, Iíve done too many things

††††††††† for the wrong reason in the past, I donít intend

††††††††† to continue on that trend.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Good for you Lady Lloyd, I just know youíre

††††††††† going to be very happy here.

 

ABIGAIL

††††††††† Iím sure I will, as long as you finally start

††††††††† calling me Abigail and forget that I was a

††††††††† frightful pain to begin with!

†††††††††

JESSICA

††††††††† All forgotten, Abigail.

 

SETH

††††††††† I have news of my own.

 

NOAH

††††††††† Oh yes?

 

SETH

††††††††† As of this morning, I am the only Dr working

††††††††† at Cabot Cove hospital.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† How did that happen?

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, it turns out that not only was he up to

††††††††† his neck in double dealing with Mack Anderson

††††††††† he had also exagerated quite a bit about his

††††††††† so-called impressive credentials! Lets just

††††††††† say he leapt at the chance to go quietly when

††††††††† presented with all of the facts.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, that is good news Seth, but really, I know

††††††††† he wasnít ideal, but the hospital really did

††††††††† need another doctor, you cant manage it all

††††††††† on your own.

 

SETH

††††††††† Donít talk rubbish woman! Of course I can, but

††††††††† as fortune would have it, do you remember Sadie

††††††††† Marchent, my intern from a few years back.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, of course, a lovely girl.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well, just so happens sheís looking for

††††††††† a residency, Iíve put in a word for her and

††††††††† she should be joining us soon, clever girl

††††††††† Sadie, knows enough not just to rely on new

††††††††† fangled techniques.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, Seth! its good to finally see you happy.

 

SETH

††††††††† You bet! And I can finally take some time off!

††††††††† The fish are feeling neglected!

 

THEY ALL LAUGH, MORT AND ANDY WALK IN.

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, thatís a sound I havenít heard for a while!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Yes, it feels good, it feels like a dark cloud

††††††††† that was hanging over us all has finally lifted.

 

MORT

††††††††† Indeed! Speaking of black clouds, Andy and I just

††††††††† loaded Mack Anderson into the back of a state

††††††††† police car, seems heís going to be answering

††††††††† some pretty serious state charges concerning

††††††††† insider trading, it seems its not the first time

††††††††† heís wormed his way inside a small town only to

††††††††† to rip it apart with new developments, made a

††††††††† pretty penny from it he has too!

 

SETH

††††††††† Pah!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh but wait, does that mean we are currently

††††††††† without a sheriff?

 

MORT

(SMILES)

††††††††† Well, Iíve just spoken with the Mayor and Iíve

††††††††† agreed to stand in as Sheriff until a new

††††††††† election can be arranged.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Which of course you will win by a landslide!

 

SETH

††††††††† Here here!

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, its funny you should say that, with every

††††††††† thing that happened with Mack Anderson it got me

††††††††† to thinkingÖ

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, Seth, you mustnít think too much into it,

††††††††† the townsfolk were scared that was all, and Mack

††††††††† had the time to stand there shouting the loudest,

††††††††† trust me, Cabot Cove knows what youíve done for

††††††††† it.

 

MORT

††††††††† Its not that Mrs. F, truth is, I sat down with

††††††††† Adele and realized something, maybe I do work

††††††††† too much, its not like Iím getting any younger,

††††††††† neither of us are, and I just donít get to spend

††††††††† as much time with Adele as I would like, I always

††††††††† promised her Iíd take her on a cruise and

††††††††† never got round to it, Iím thinking maybe the

††††††††† time is now.

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Oh, but you wouldnít leave Cabot Cove would you?

 

 

MORT

††††††††† Are you kidding? This is my home now.

 

SETH

††††††††† Well who on earth would be sheriff?

 

MORT

††††††††† Well, funny you should ask, I spoke to the mayor

††††††††† about that, and while Iím happy to stand in for

††††††††† now, Iím only doing it so I can throw my weight

††††††††† behind the next sheriff of Cabot Cove.

 

SETH

††††††††† Who?

 

MORT

††††††††† Andy.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Me? Are you kidding?

 

MORT

††††††††† Not at all Andy, youíve been my deputy for a

††††††††† long time, you know the ropes and more

††††††††† importantly youíre darn good at your job, youíd

††††††††† make an excellent sheriff.

 

ANDY

††††††††† Wow! I never even thought about it!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Well you must Andy, because youíd be perfect!

††††††††† Youíve served this town very well for a long

††††††††† time, if it helps, Iíll support you all the way.

 

ANDY

Wow! I donít know what to say.

 

MORT

††††††††† And what about you Noah? Are you going to stay

††††††††† with us and keep running the Gazette?

 

NOAH

††††††††† I donít know Sheriff, so much has happened lately

††††††††† that I donít really know what to do next!

 

 

JESSICA

††††††††† One day at a time, youíre young, enjoy it all!

 

SETH

††††††††† And you woman? Whatís afoot for you? A new book

††††††††† to delight your readers?

 

JESSICA

††††††††† Maybe, Seth, Iíve not really given it much

††††††††† thought, though, I did hear that Abbey Creek has

††††††††† crayfish that are just desperate to be caught,

††††††††† and you know, I havenít really had a holiday

††††††††† for a while and Iíve realized that its time to

††††††††† stop worrying about my tomorrows, thereís a lot

††††††††† more fun to be had today.

 

SETH

††††††††† Sounds good to me woman!

 

JESSICA

††††††††† To the future, whatever it holds!

 

 

 

THE END.