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Mind Games Screenplay

By

D. G. Richards

Copyright © D. G. Richards 2000



SCENE 1: INT. MATTHEW'S LAB. NIGHT.

The lab is in darkness. MATTHEW HALL is sitting at his desk playing space invaders on his mini-computer. MATTHEW is English. He is twenty-four, of slim build, with brown hair and brown eyes. He is playing the game badly. He is bored. He is not paying attention and the game is suddenly over.

MATTHEW

(Surprised)

"Shit."

MATTHEW sighs, and stares up at the ceiling. He is thoughtful.

MATTHEW

(Pleading)

"Please, God, don't hate me will you? But can you kill someone for me? Soon? Please?"

CUT TO SCENE 2: INT. HOSPITAL ICU. NIGHT.

GRAHAM and AMANDA MIDDLETON sit on each side of JAYNE'S bed in the ICU. They hold each others hands across the bed, and hold their daughter's hands as she lies between them. DOCTOR HUGHES stands nearby.

AMANDA

(Tearfully, and very sad)

"I can't do it, Graham. I can't."

GRAHAM

(Swallowing, and just as tearful)

"I know, love. But you have to remember what the doctor's said. The spirit, the life, that thing that was Jayne, it's gone. Once it lived in her head, but not any more."

AMANDA squeezes JAYNE'S hand.

AMANDA

(Desperately)

"But I can feel her, Graham! She's warm, and she's breathing! This can't be right!"

GRAHAM cannot answer. They sit in silence until DOCTOR HUGHES comes closer.

DOCTOR HUGHES

(He coughs and speaks nervously)

"If you want to wait a bit longer, I can leave it until tomorrow."

AMANDA glances at DOCTOR HUGHES and her husband's face. She closes her eyes shut, and shakes her head.

AMANDA

(With renewed strength)

"No. We owe it to Jayne not to let this drag on any longer."

AMANDA squeezes JAYNE and GRAHAM'S hands even tighter.

AMANDA

(Whispering)

"I'm ready."

CUT TO SCENE 3: INT. HOSPITAL WAITING ROOM. NIGHT.

JULIA CONNORS stares through the window into the Intensive Care Unit.

JULIA is English. She is thirty, tall and slim, with short blonde hair and bright blue eyes. She speaks with an upper-class accent.

SAM RAWLSTON waits with her.

SAM is a black American. He is thirty-five, tall and well built, with short cropped hair and brown eyes. He lounges against a wall.

SAM is calm and confident, while JULIA is impatient and fidgety as she watches what is happening in the ICU.

JULIA'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: INTERIOR OF ICU

GRAHAM and AMANDA are sitting by their daughter's bedside, DOCTOR HUGHES standing over them. The three of them look very sad.

JULIA

(Impatiently)

"What are they waiting for? You switched her off, she's dead, now get out!"

SAM

(Smiling)

"You'll never win first prize in a sensitivity contest talking like that."

JULIA glances back at SAM.

JULIA

(Sarcastically)

"Oh, and I suppose you will?"

SAM makes a face at JULIA, and she quickly turns away.

JULIA

"Come on, get out of there before she shrivels up!"

SAM comes forward and stands next to JULIA. He stares into the ICU with her.

SAM

"They've just switched off their daughter, give them a chance to cry before you kick them out."

JULIA

"They can cry at home! We've got work to do. And I'm sure getting that doctor in there involved was a bad idea. We shouldn't have told him."

JULIA AND SAM'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: INTERIOR OF ICU.

DOCTOR HUGHES is comforting GRAHAM and AMANDA.

SAM

"And what would you have preferred? That we approached the distraught couple cold?"

JULIA

"I still think he looks far too sneaky to me. I'll bet he's already spouting off about her death helping someone else to live. He's probably got the papers in his pocket right now. By the time we get to the parents, that body will look like a car that was left unattended in Moss Side overnight."

JULIA AND SAM'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: INTERIOR OF ICU.

GRAHAM and AMANDA are coming out.

JULIA

(Excitedly)

"At last! They're coming out."

JULIA turns to SAM, pointing her finger at him.

JULIA

"Keep out of my way, Sam. Okay? I don't want you putting me off!"

SAM

(Laughing)

"No way! This I gotta see!"

JULIA

(With annoyance)

"Just don't bugger me up! I'm warning you!"

JULIA tries to push SAM away.

SAM

(Still laughing)

"Here they come!"

JULIA punches SAM.

JULIA

"Be serious!"

SAM stops laughing and regains control of himself. He is just in time as GRAHAM and AMANDA emerge from the ICU. JULIA quickly approaches them, her manner now very grave.

JULIA

(Solemnly)

"Hello, Mr and Mrs Middleton? My name is Julia Connors. I am so sorry for your loss, and I do hope you don't mind me speaking to you now. I know it's a bad time, but it is important that we act quickly. I represent a company called Medical Technology. I believe Doctor Hughes has already mentioned us to you?"

CUT TO SCENE 4: INT. BEN'S OFFICE. DAY.

SAM stands before BEN'S desk. He is reading aloud from a report he holds. BEN WATKINS is sitting down, his back to SAM, listening carefully.

BEN is in his fifties. He is American. He is slightly over weight with receding fair hair and blue eyes.

SAM

"Female, twenty-four, five-foot-eight, one-hundred and six pounds. Officially dead at 19:17 last night at Preston Royal Hospital, sir."

BEN

"Cause of death?"

SAM

"Severe head trauma sustained in an RTA. But she was in a coma for three weeks before they finally pulled the plug on her last night, sir. The file says she was conscious and cognisant at the scene of the accident, but lapsed into a coma a few minutes later."

BEN

"Perfect."

BEN turns to face SAM. He picks up the report SAM has now put down on his neat and tidy desk. He begins to leaf through it as he continues to question SAM.

BEN

"Any problems getting permission from the deceased's relatives?"

SAM

"No, sir. Connors excelled herself, sir. She was more than her usual best. She preyed on the parents fears that their daughter would be cut up, and used that fear to put them off giving their consent to any transplants. Instead she persuaded them into believing that leaving their precious daughter with us would be a much better way. She fed them that story about studying the effects of stress on the brain following severe trauma, and how that would help to save the lives of other people who have similar injuries as the one that killed their daughter. It didn't take long to get them to agree after that."

BEN

(Questioningly)

"And they understood and accepted the delay this would cause to any funeral arrangements for their daughter?"

SAM

(Confidently)

"Yes, sir. I think they were almost relieved. Connors got a month out of them."

BEN looks up at SAM. He still looks concerned.

BEN

"Where is Julia?"

SAM

"She's with the body, sir. She said she wanted to make sure that there wasn't any foul-ups."

BEN

"What's their ETA?"

SAM

"09:00."

BEN

"Have her report to me as soon as she gets in. That will be all."

SAM

"Yes, sir."

SAM leaves. BEN opens the report and begins to read JAYNE'S file.

BEN'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: CLOSE SHOT OF THE REPORT.

(JAYNE'S profile in the report:

Born in the maternity wing of Royal Oldham Hospital in December in 1974, Jayne had spent most of her early life in Oldham before moving to Liverpool. She had graduated in English at Liverpool University only a year ago, and was hoping to do a Masters Degree at Lancaster. She had been on her way back from there when she had her fatal accident. Among her many other talents, Jayne could also speak French and Italian. She had travelled around most of Europe according to her Passport, and she was a very frequent visitor to a local sports club of which she was a member. She had obviously led a very active life. JAYNE'S photograph is included in the report. It shows an attractive young woman with long brown hair, brown eyes, and a vivacious smile.)

BEN

(Shaking his head)

"A month. It better be enough."

CUT TO SCENE 5: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

Technicians are fussing around JAYNE, installing equipment and attaching her life support machines. They treat her badly. She is naked and hardly covered. BEN and MATTHEW are present. MATTHEW looks uncomfortable at what he sees.

BEN

(Puzzled)

"You look surprised? I told you we would get you a suitable subject for your test, didn't I? Were you beginning to doubt me?"

MATTHEW stares at JAYNE in the bed surrounded by all the medical equipment."

MATTHEW

(He swallows, nervously)

"No, it's just that I didn't expect it to be a woman, that's all."

BEN

(Worried)

"Does it make a difference?"

MATTHEW

(Shaking his head)

"No, not at all. It's just that I didn't expect it."

BEN

"Does it make a difference to you?"

MATTHEW looks away from JAYNE and now looks at BEN, his expression rather obvious.

BEN puts his arm around MATTHEW'S shoulder.

BEN

(Smiling and fatherly)

"Look, Matthew, I know what you're thinking, but don't go softon me. Planning all this was one thing, wasn't it, but now that it's for real, and now you're suddenly faced with a real body, it's shocked you, hasn't it?"

MATTHEW nods.

BEN

"Well, alright. So this is a dead woman, officially anyway. But don't let that put you off. All the papers have been signed and filed with the appropriate authorities, so she's no longer a real person. She, it, is the field trial for your research. You knew that you would have to work with a human subject sooner or later. For God's sake, you've been moping around the offices waiting for one for long enough. Now we've finally got one, you should be excited!"

BEN points to the bed.

BEN

(With excitement)

"This is what we've both been waiting for, Matthew! This is exactly what you asked for! The damage to her brain has been minimal, and she has been off the life support machines for less than thirty minutes. Everything's ready."

BEN now shakes his head and looks downcast.

BEN

(In a more subdued tone)

"But, if you've got cold feet. Well, all you have to do is say the word, Matthew, and we can call it all off, right now. I'll get a pasting in the board room, and it could mean my job, but if you're not sure...."

MATTHEW starts to protest even before BEN has finished.

MATTHEW

(Eagerly, but still hesitant)

"I want to go on, Ben! I do! I'm sorry, it's just that, faced with a real person, a young woman, I-"

BEN

"Yeah, I know. You weren't expecting it. You told me. But you were very clear on your requirements, and male or female wasn't one of them. This was what you wanted, so this is what you got. That's why it took us so long. Now, let's leave these people to do their job while we go back into your lab and you can show me that implant."

BEN takes his arm from MATTHEW'S shoulder and leads him out of the room and into the corridor. MATTHEW looks back over his shoulder just before the door closes.

MATTHEW'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: JAYNE'S ROOM SEEN THROUGH THE CLOSING DOOR.

JAYNE is still on the bed, and the MedTec technicians handle her too casually.

CUT TO SCENE 6: INT. CORRIDOR OUTSIDE MATTHEW'S LAB. DAY

As they walk towards his lab, MATTHEW suddenly stops BEN in the corridor.

MATTHEW

"I can't do it, Ben."

BEN

(Shocked)

"What?"

MATTHEW

(Smiling)

"No, I don't mean I don't want to go on with the field trial! I mean I can't just think of her as an object, a thing, you know?"

BEN

(Sighing)

"You had me worried there for a moment. Come on, let's go inside your lab where we can talk in privacy."

They walk the few paces to the door marked 'Mat's Den' and go inside.

CUT TO SCENE 7: INT. MATTHEW'S LAB. DAY.

As soon as they are inside, MATTHEW explains his feelings and his fears.

MATTHEW

"I guess I was being naive. I was too detached. I knew I needed a human guinea pig, but I didn't really think of the consequences until I saw her in that bed. She's still a person, Ben. To me, she's not dead. She's living and breathing, and she'll have to be fed and looked after."

BEN

"My people will do all that, don't worry."

MATTHEW sits down at his desk as he continues.

MATTHEW

"But I do worry, Ben, because they think of her the way you do. They're just technicians, not nurses. I saw the way they touched her and treated her. They didn't care about her feelings, or her dignity."

BEN

(Forcefully)

"But she's dead!"

MATTHEW

(Just as forcefully)

"No she's not! Not to me anyway. For my experiment to have any success at all, I have to believe that she's still alive. If at any time I begin to think of her as dead, then it's over. Do you understand?"

There is a pause while BEN considers.

BEN

(He takes a deep breath)

"Okay, I'll talk to everyone. I'll make sure that she's treated properly."

MATTHEW

(Relieved)

"Hire some proper nurses, don't just leave it to the technicians. And does she have to be naked?"

BEN

"You're right."

BEN slaps MATTHEW on the shoulder.

BEN

(Smiling wryly)

"You're absolutely right. Maybe it's me that's got too detached. I'll see that a proper nurse is hired to look after her, and that the surgical team carries out the operation this afternoon using the correct medical practices. From now on she's a patient and not just a subject for the field trial."

BEN is thoughtful for a moment.

BEN

(With sudden resolution)

"Her name's Jayne. I'll have her complete file sent over to you so that you can learn all about her. Okay?"

MATTHEW

(Hesitantly)

"Jayne."

MATTHEW nods slowly at first, and then more strongly.

MATTHEW

"Yes. Thank you, Ben. I know it might cost a bit more money, but it means a lot to me. Thank you."

BEN smiles brightly.

BEN

"And the success of your work means a lot to me! Come on, show me that implant that cost me so much. I'd like to see it before the surgeons put it into Jayne's head."

They turn to the equipment strewn around on MATTHEW'S desk. MATTHEW quickly retrieves the implant in it's box, and begins to discuss it with BEN.

CUT TO SCENE 8: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

JAYNE is in bed, her head is bandaged and she is now dressed in a hospital gown. Tubes attach her to the life support machines. A cable emerges from under the bandages around her head and goes through a hole in the wall to MATTHEW'S lab next door.

MATTHEW is sitting at his desk which has been positioned next to her bed. He is holding her hand.

MATTHEW

(Sighing)

"Well, here goes...."

MATTHEW lets go of JAYNE'S hand and types on his keyboard.

MATTHEW'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: CLOSE SHOT OF THE VDU SCREEN.

(The VDU screen shows:

C:\MINNIE\WINDOWS>run MAPPING

MAPPING RUNNING

CRAY 1 = 5%

CRAY 2 = 0%

The percentage figure for Cray 1 increases rapidly.)

CUT TO SCENE 9: INT. MONITORING ROOM. DAY.

It is the end of the first week. BEN paces about the room while JULIA sits at a desk which is laid out like a nurses station. She is wearing a nurses uniform. There is a CCTV monitor on the desk that shows the interior of JAYNE'S room.

BEN

(Impatiently)

"What could possibly keep two Crays buzzing for a week at almost maximum capacity with so little result? With computer power like that, she should be orbiting Mars by now!"

BEN walks over to the monitor screen and points at it.

CLOSE SHOT OF THE MONITOR SCREEN SHOWING JAYNE'S ROOM.

JAYNE is still lying in her bed, MATTHEW sitting at his computer next to her. He is typing.

BEN

(In exasperation)

"But look at her! If you and that other nurse didn't move her about each day, she'd still be in the same position she was on the first day!"

JULIA is unconcerned, and is twiddling a pencil.

JULIA

"She is in the same position she was on the first day. If you ask me she's as dead as a door nail, but not yet quite as stiff."

BEN

(Angrily)

"I didn't ask you!"

BEN suddenly smiles comes closer to JULIA, and leans over her.

BEN

(Softly and with menace)

"But if this does all go wrong, I'll make sure that everyone knows who picked the subject for our field trial."

JULIA throws the pencil down and stands up, pushing BEN away.

JULIA

(Her voice is raised)

"You're not pinning this one on me, Benjamin! I've worked my butt off tending to sleeping-corpse-face in there! 'Keep close to her' you said, 'Keep an eye on what Matthew is doing.' Bullshit! I've spent most of my time in the sluice room! I've done better sitting in here! This isn't what I'm paid for! I'm a Field Agent, not a nurse-maid! I've put too many good years in for the Corporation to lose it all now! And if you think I'll just stand by and take all the blame just because one of your fancy ideas is going down the toilet, then you belong on that bed in there next to Nefertiti!"

BEN backs away as JULIA speaks, spreading his arms wide in an expression of detachment.

BEN

"It's no use complaining to me, Julia dear. You know what Grant's like. He won't just flush me, he'll flush the whole kit and caboodle. Me, you, Rawlston, Matthew in there, even this whole office, we'll all disappear overnight, never to be seen again. And it won't matter who's fault it is. It's happened before. Don't tell me you haven't heard about Santa Monica?"

JULIA stares at BEN, her anger gone, but doesn't answer.

BEN

(Nodding)

"Yeah, you've heard! Did you also hear about how the guy in charge had 'left the company', and how overnight, half of his staff had 'left the company' with him? Yeah, that's right! What's the bets you won't be bumping into any of them, or their families down at the mall!"

JULIA

(Calmly)

"Why don't you go in there and talk to him?"

BEN now also calms down.

BEN

(Sighing)

"Yes, why not? Since I'm paying for it all, the least Matthew can do is explain to me why nothing's happening."

BEN heads for the door.

JULIA

"And don't forget to remind him that he only has three weeks left."

BEN nods and leaves.

JULIA sits down again at the desk and watches the monitor screen. She turns up the volume on the monitor and waits. She begins twiddling with the pencil again.

JULIA'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: CLOSE SHOT OF THE MONITOR SCREEN SHOWING JAYNE'S ROOM.

MATTHEW looks round as BEN walks in.

CUT TO SCENE 10: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

JAYNE is still comatose. MATTHEW is sitting at his desk. BEN has explained his worries to MATTHEW, and MATTHEW is amused.

MATTHEW

"Why didn't you tell me you were so worried?"

BEN

"I thought you knew. All of this, the expense, everything, was on my say so. So, if there are no results to show for it all at the end of the field trial, I'm for it. I thought that was obvious, even to you."

BEN pulls up a chair and sits next to MATTHEW at his computer. MATTHEW grins at him but doesn't reply.

BEN

(Annoyed)

"You've only got three more weeks, you know that, don't you?"

MATTHEW

(Still smiling)

"Three more weeks will be fine, Ben!"

MATTHEW turns back to his computer, and begins typing on the keyboard.

BEN

(Even more annoyed)

"You don't seem to understand-"

BEN stops when something catches his eye.

CLOSE SHOT - BEN'S POINT OF VIEW.

JAYNE'S arm slowly rises from the side of the bed and holds up three fingers in an obvious sign. BEN stares at it, wide-eyed.

MATTHEW continues to type and speaks over his shoulder.

MATTHEW

"Three weeks to go, you said. Or, if you prefer, one week gone."

JAYNE now lowers two of her fingers and BEN is left staring at her raised middle finger.

BEN finally tears his eyes away from JAYNE'S raised hand and stares at MATTHEW in awe.

BEN

(In a subdued voice)

"How long have you been able to do that?"

MATTHEW glances over his shoulder at BEN and smiles once more.

MATTHEW

"Oh, since about yesterday morning. But that's nothing, watch this!"

MATTHEW types on his keyboard again, then rummages about in the drawer of his equipment trolley. A few seconds pass before he produces a virtual reality glove from somewhere inside. He quickly plugs it into his mini-computer and puts it on his right hand. As he moves his hand and fingers, JAYNE'S hand and fingers copy his movements exactly.

MATTHEW

"You should have told me you were worried, Ben, I could have showed you this yesterday. Although it might have looked like nothing was happening this week, most of the hard work has been done. I thought you would have guessed that by the increased usage on the Crays. Both of them are upto about ninety percent now, but that should be the limit."

Both of them watch JAYNE'S arm, hand and fingers moving very energetically. BEN is transfixed by the sight.

BEN

(Totally absorbed)

"I dismissed it without thinking. I'm used to physical results, so I never thought about where all that computer power was going. Can I try?"

MATTHEW nods and takes off the glove. BEN puts it on and begins to move his hand, watching as JAYNE copies his every move.

BEN

"I know you must have explained it to me a hundred times before, Matthew, but explain it to me again, will you?"

MATTHEW

"Okay."

MATTHEW swivels in his chair and faces BEN properly.

MATTHEW

"If you remember from my proposal, the first task was the make or break of my whole research project. Before we can do anything, the neural net of the brain has to be mapped out. That's what the Crays have been doing all this week."

BEN makes a thumbs up sign and watches as JAYNE does the same.

BEN

"But what does that actually mean? I'm an electronics man, not a brain surgeon."

MATTHEW

(Laughing)

"Yes, it is hard. And I was like you in the beginning, but if I can understand the basics of it, you can. It's to do with the way we remember things.

"At the start, at birth, you can think of the brain as being a clean slate. The brain is made up of millions and millions of neural cells, but none of them are connected in any way. Then, as we learn things, pathways between neural cells begin to be formed. Gradually, as we remember more things, the pathways get more complicated as more and more neural cells are joined together. Soon it becomes a vast network of interconnecting pathways, an impenetrable rat's nest of junctions and cells.

"The complicated bit is understanding how our memory actually works. It's not like a computer, where one piece of information is stored in one place. No, for us, one memory could require a dozen neural cells. But it's not even that simple. Sometimes a smell might make you remember a time, a place, or even a person. Or a name might make you think of an event, or some sort of experience. So all your memories, everything, is interconnected, from one end of the rat's nest to the other. Who knows how we access it, or how it really works? But it does work, and instantly. Well, almost instantly. The pathways need to be refreshed every so often. If they're not, they seem to fade away.

"You must have experienced the times when you want to remember something but you can't? You know, the times when someone's name is on the tip of your tongue, but you just can't get it?"

BEN stops playing with the virtual reality glove and nods to MATTHEW as he takes it off.

BEN

"Yes. It drives me crazy when I can't remember like that. It's very annoying."

MATTHEW smiles as he takes the glove back from him and puts it back in the drawer after disconnecting it.

MATTHEW

"That's because your brain is trying to find the correct pathway, but for some reason the route isn't there anymore. So what do you do? You try and find a different route, that's what. You try to get round the gap by thinking of something else that will remind you of what you want to remember. It's as if you know exactly where it is, but you just can't reach it. You can go frantic trying to get closer and closer, until finally, you remember. And at the instant of remembering, the lost pathway is remade, and the thing that you couldn't remember before is now suddenly so obvious."

BEN

"So how does all this fit in with your work?"

MATTHEW

"Well, Jayne's brain was a mass of interconnecting pathways before she was injured. And although she's alive again, those pathways have all disappeared. Part of the reason for that is that there is no life, or energy in the neural cells. The implant provides that energy in the form of a very weak electrical charge from the tiny battery inside it. From it's position between the two halves of Jayne's brain, it can stimulate all the neural cells like a little pacemaker. The next task is to refresh all those pathways. That's what the Crays have been doing.

"The software I wrote acts a bit like a computer virus. It leaves the implant along one of the hard wired routes into the brain where it reaches one neural cell. Once there, it identifies all the pathways that lead from it, reproduces itself, and sends the clones down each pathway. It then returns to the Crays to tell them where it went. Once the clones get to other neural cells, they each do the same, sending off more clones off down more pathways. They also return to the Crays, travelling back through the same pathways to the first neural cell, and from there back to the implant. Each time this happens the neural cells and the pathways between them are refreshed, rebuilding the neural net.

"It's a bit more complicated than that, but basically, that's all there is to it. It just takes a long time. That's why the Crays are so busy. They're mapping out the neural net from the data they get from the returning virus clones. And because the amount of data coming back becomes very large very quickly, the first Cray was at it's limits by the end of the first day. Now the two of them have almost got the mapping out done between them."

BEN

(With high interest)

"Are you telling me that the Crays are trying to reproduce and store Jayne's memories?"

MATTHEW shakes his head.

MATTHEW

"No, not at all. We would need more than two Crays to do that. All they're doing at the moment is mapping out the neural net and continually refreshing it via the implant. The actual meaning, or content, of the information that the pathways and neural cells hold hasn't been considered yet. That will come later, when the Crays have finished this task.

"While all this has been going on, I've been accessing the map the Crays are creating on this computer to analyse the connections between Jayne's brain and the rest of her nervous system. I've concentrated on just her right arm and hand for the moment, and you've seen the results. But I've just been playing at it. When the Crays finish mapping out all of Jayne's neural net, which will probably be tomorrow, or the day after, I'll switch them over to this task, starting where I leave off. They'll be much quicker than me, but it'll still take another week, maybe two, before they've finished making the connections between her neural net and the rest of her body."

BEN has sat in silence, totally engrossed by MATTHEW'S explanation. But now he can hardly hide his eagerness.

BEN

(Excitedly)

"So when can we can think about accessing her memories?"

MATTHEW

"Any time after that."

BEN

(Pressing)

"And you'll use the Crays to do that, too?"

MATTHEW

"No, with luck we won't need them anymore after that."

BEN is puzzled by MATTHEW'S reply.

BEN

"I don't understand. What will you use if you don't use the Crays?"

MATTHEW

"We'll just ask Jayne. She should be awake by then."

CUT TO SCENE 11: INT. MONITORING ROOM. DAY.

BEN enters the room. He looks stunned.

JULIA is still sitting at the nurses station, only now the pencil is stuck between her teeth.

JULIA

"He's an arrogant little git, isn't he?

(She mimics MATTHEW'S voice)

"'We'll just ask Jayne.'

"That's what he thinks! If that slab of meat moves without one of you playing glove puppets, I'll take up nursing full time. In fact I'll specialise in the elderly and infirm who have extreme bladder problems."

BEN ignores her remarks and walks up to her and bangs on the desk.

BEN

(His voice raised)

"You're in here all the time, why the hell didn't you see anything before?"

JULIA

(On the defensive)

"Because that's the first time that extra from 'The Living Dead' in there has moved without mine or Sandra's hand up her back! I swear it, Benjamin!"

BEN

"And how can you be so sure Sandra hasn't seen any movement?"

JULIA

"Because she never stops gabbing. If she'd seen our favourite corpse raise even so much as an eyebrow, she would have talked me to death about it before she went home. For God's sake, Ben, there's no one else she can tell about her marvellously exciting day except me, so give me some credit."

BEN is convinced at last. He sits down next to JULIA and becomes thoughtful.

BEN

"Are the Crays being downloaded each night as planned?"

JULIA

"Of course they are. And his mini-computer, and his lap-top, which he virtually sleeps with, so getting hold of that each night is a pain in the arse."

BEN

(Voice raised and still short tempered)

"Alright, alright! So it's a pain in the arse! So long as Tyler can use the data, I don't give a shit!"

JULIA

(With heavy sarcasm)

"Don't tell me you're not pleased that sleeping beauty is going to awake? I thought the whole point of this was to help these poor people? Think of the lives you could save, think of the publicity, Benjamin! Think of the profits, too! And think of Grant's smiling face when you tell him all about it!"

BEN glares at her. It is meant to shut her up, but all it does is make her laugh.

BEN

(Sternly)

"I don't think this is at all funny."

JULIA'S laughter increases until she sees just how unamused BEN is. Her laughter fades to a giggle.

JULIA

(Still giggling)

"Oh, Benjamin! Fancy starting out with motives like yours and ending up as a philanthropist. You have to see the funny side of it."

BEN

(Still without humour)

"There isn't a funny side of it, and you know it."

BEN takes a deep breath and sighs, resting his head in his hands. He is depressed. He glances at the monitor, watching MATTHEW still sitting by his computer as before. Then BEN turns his eyes towards JULIA.

BEN

"How can I tell Grant that our project to manipulate the human memory has turned into a great medical breakthrough?"

JULIA

"By phone, long distance."

BEN

"Get serious, Julia!"

JULIA

"I am serious. There's still a lot of money to be made here, so if you tell him right, he might let you live.

(JULIA shrugs her shoulders before continuing)

"He might break off all your limbs at the trunk, but he'll let you live."

BEN is already shaking his head.

BEN

"This medical breakthrough isn't going anywhere, at least not for a long while yet. If Grant can find a use for it, then it'll be worth something. But that will be someone else's job, not yours or mine. Our job was to find a method of permanently changing someone's mind. To remove what was once there and replace it with something totally new and different. People whose minds can be changed like that in a guaranteed, foolproof way can be very useful to the Corporation. Not just in the matter of easing corporate expansion strategies where money won't work and resistance is being met, but also in the matter of executing difficult and unsavoury tasks.

"As you well know yourself, finding the right person to carry out such tasks has always been a major problem. But if we can taylor make the person to fit the task, and then erase that person just as easily, then we will have a real breakthrough on our hands. And that's the breakthrough that Grant expects, not the reawakening of trauma victims. So unless we can glean something from the data we've downloaded to satisfy his expectation, we're all going to end up dead. Far more dead than Jayne Middleton ever was."

CUT TO SCENE 12: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

JAYNE lies in the bed twitching as if she is suffering from a mild electrical shock, which in some respects she is. Her movements aren't violent, but they are vigorous and persistent. The tiny twitches are brought on by the program that the Crays are now executing.

The bandages and stitches have been removed from JAYNE'S head, and the bald patch at the back of her head where the implant has been inserted is now clearly visible. Her scalp is still red and bruised looking around the wound, but new hair growth is already evident. A small socket is attached to her skull at the same point. A cable plugged into this socket goes up and along the wall before disappearing through a hole into MATTHEW'S lab next door.

MATTHEW is in the room with JAYNE. He sits at his desk and watches her intently. Every so often he reaches out to stroke her hair, moving it to cover the socket and bald patch. Or he pulls up the sheet which keeps slowly working it's way down as JAYNE moves about. It is now near the end of the second week.

SANDRA comes into the room and stands by the bed, staring at JAYNE.

SANDRA is forty-two. She is English. She is of short to medium height, of medium build, with short black hair and brown eyes. She speaks with a Mancunian accent.

SANDRA shakes her head as she stares at JAYNE.

SANDRA

"It's not natural. I know you mean well, Matt, but it makes me shiver watching her moving about like that. What are you doing to the poor girl?"

MATTHEW

"Don't worry, it's just the way the program works. Up to now, the Crays have only been refreshing the neural pathways in Jayne's brain with a very low electrical charge. Now they are using a much more stronger electrical charge to select and activate a single neural cell in Jayne's brain. This triggers all the pathways that are connected to it. Some of these pathways lead to nerve endings that control Jayne's body. The electrical charge is now strong enough to stimulate these nerves. The Crays then monitor the feedback from all the other neural cells in Jayne's brain, some of which may also have nerve endings connected to them. It's a bit more complicated than that, because one neural cell may trigger several others, and the Crays have a devil of a job sorting out all the responses they get back."

SANDRA

(Cheekily)

"I love it when you talk dirty!"

MATTHEW laughs as he goes back to his keyboard.

SANDRA

"But how do you know what each nerve does?"

MATTHEW

"Knowing exactly what's been triggered doesn't matter for now, what does matter is identifying the nerve endings that respond, and then matching them up to the neural cells that were first triggered."

SANDRA

(Indignantly)

"It matters to me! I have to clean up every time she has a little accident, and so far she's had three of those little accidents this morning, and they're all your fault!"

MATTHEW

(Apologetically)

"Sorry, Sandra. It won't last much longer, I promise."

SANDRA wags her finger at him.

SANDRA

"Good! Just so long as you know that you're in my bad books."

MATTHEW smiles and continues with his work.

SANDRA turns her attention to JAYNE once more. First, she checks JAYNE'S temperature and her pulse, then she looks over the monitors and life support machines that keep JAYNE alive. Finally, she begins changing the nearly empty drip for a new one she has brought with her.

MATTHEW slowly stops what he is doing and begins to stare at JAYNE. He sits like this until SANDRA surprises him.

SANDRA

"How did you get her arm to move, then?"

MATTHEW

(Surprised)

"What?"

SANDRA finishes what she is doing and comes to stand next to him. She pokes him in the back with her finger.

SANDRA

(In mock annoyance)

"Aren't you listening to me?"

MATTHEW

"Sorry, I was miles away."

SANDRA

"Yeah, mooning over bright eyes I'll bet!"

MATTHEW

(Embarrassed)

"I was not!"

SANDRA

(Accusingly)

"Oh, yes you were! The tarty cow!"

MATTHEW

(Shocked)

"Sandra! You hardly know anything about her. You shouldn't say things like that."

SANDRA

"You hardly know her, either!

(She wags a finger at him again)

"I'm telling you, Matt, you're wasting your time with that one. There's more to her than meets the eye. She's never been a professional nurse, that's for sure. Oh, she knows her stuff, alright. But she does it all slightly differently, not like someone with experience, someone who's done it all before. I wouldn't trust her as far as I could chuck her. If you ask me, you'd be much better off with this one in bed than you would be with the likes of her."

MATTHEW glances at JAYNE.

CLOSE SHOT - MATTHEW'S POINT OF VIEW.

JAYNE'S teeth are chattering and there are beads of sweat on her face and brow.

SANDRA wipes JAYNE'S brow with a face cloth.

SANDRA

"The poor thing, you're tiring her out."

MATTHEW

(Sighing)

"It won't last much longer. And it gets easier after this."

SANDRA

"Is that when you think she'll wake up?"

MATTHEW

(Genuinely)

"God, I hope so."

SANDRA pokes MATTHEW with her finger again.

SANDRA

"Well, are you going to answer my question, or not?"

MATTHEW

"What question?"

SANDRA

(Rolling her eyes heavenward)

"Oh, mercy! If you don't know what all the nerve thingys are connected to, how did you make her hand move?"

MATTHEW

(Remembering)

"Oh, yes! That's easy! I moved her hand and fingers about and monitored which neural cells responded. Then I stimulated the same neural cells with my mini-computer. It took a while for me to program my computer to move her hand and fingers properly, but the Crays will do it much quicker, you'll see."

SANDRA

"I know I'm going to hate myself for this, but how? They've been at it for five days, and so far all they've succeeded in doing is make my job harder."

MATTHEW

(Grinning)

"What they learn they don't forget. When they're finished this program, I'll start them on the next one, and that's when you'll really see something!"

CUT TO SCENE 13: INT. COMPUTER CENTRE. DAY.

BEN WATKINS and GLEN TYLER are standing in the middle of the Corporation's computer centre in Exchange Quay. The walls are all glass, revealing the skyline outside. BEN and TYLER are surrounded by technicians in white coats.

TYLER is in his fifties. He is American. He is tall and very thin. He has blue eyes and light brown hair and a beard. Both are turning to grey.

The computer centre is on the eighth floor, within eyesight of the MedTec Offices in Salford Quays, but no one there even knows that it exists.

TYLER

(Patronisingly)

"It's not a problem, Ben. Just have confidence in your people. Let Hall carry on with his work. Even if he succeeds in waking the girl from her coma, it's not a problem. In fact, it's a bonus."

BEN

(Unimpressed)

"How can that be a bonus? The last thing we want is for her to be running about, asking questions and causing us more problems!"

TYLER

"Ah! But she won't! Because that's when she ceases to be his field trial, and becomes ours."

TYLER beckons BEN towards his office on one side of the computer centre. They go inside, leaving the technicians busily working.

CUT TO SCENE 14: INT. TYLER'S OFFICE IN THE COMPUTER CENTRE. DAY.

BEN and TYLER enter the office. TYLER closes the door behind them and leans against it. He now shows his excitement.

TYLER

(Enthusiastically)

"I can make this work, Ben! The data we've obtained is remarkable! A complete neural net, all mapped out! And we've already started reclaiming small amounts of her memory. I've had them verified with her records, and they're accurate, Ben! Do you realise how important this is? And now we're beginning to recognise how to control her nervous system, too!"

BEN

(Still unimpressed and with sarcasm)

"Marvellous, I'm ecstatic!"

BEN sits down on one of the chairs by Tyler's desk.

BEN

"But tell me this, Glen. It's been over two weeks now, so have you managed to input anything yet? I know it's great getting all this stuff out, but it's putting it in that counts. Or have you forgotten that?"

TYLER loses his enthusiasm as he goes to sit down behind his desk.

TYLER

(Defensive)

"The reception and transmission from the radio in the implant is perfect. We could download information at any time-"

BEN

(Pressing)

"But have you?"

TYLER

"Now is not the time-"

BEN

(Firmly and triumphantly)

"You mean 'no'!"

TYLER

(Annoyingly)

"You know as well as I that downloading information to a woman in a coma would be useless. We have to wait for her to awake before we can begin."

BEN

(Insistently)

"No! You put something in now, do you hear me! I want Grant to see an immediate result. Because if, or when, she wakes up, there could be no time to carry out an effective memory alteration. We could be too busy sorting out the mess."

TYLER

(Flustered)

"But we have much more important work to do analysing the data! With the implant, we could download any time!"

BEN

"Not when she's conscious. She'll be aware of the changes."

TYLER

"But she isn't conscious yet. And, anyway, we don't know that!"

BEN

"We don't know anything yet! We don't really know if we can download any data until we've tried it, we don't know if it'll stick if we can download it, and we don't even know whether any of this will come to anything. Even if she remembered what you put in, she could ignore it. All we do know for sure is that Matthew seems to be getting along just fine!"

TYLER

"Alright! I'll prove it to you! I'll have something downloaded by the end of today. And I'll guarantee that she won't forget it or ignore it. But remember this, you won't see anything unless she wakes up, and you will have succeeded in diverting my people from more important work."

BEN

(Sternly)

"I decide what's important. I am in charge, remember?"

TYLER sits back in his chair and folds his arms.

TYLER

(Oozing confidence)

"Yes, Ben. You are in charge, and responsible for this project."

They stare at one another in a brief silence. There is a tap on the door, and they both look up as SAM enters the office without waiting for an answer.

TYLER

(Annoyed at the intrusion)

"How dare you come in like that!"

BEN

(To TYLER)

"Rawlston can come in whenever he likes."

BEN then turns to SAM.

BEN

"Provided he's got something important to tell me."

SAM

(To BEN)

"I thought you ought to know, sir. She's breathing on her own. All the machines are off."

CUT TO SCENE 15: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. NIGHT.

BEN and MATTHEW stand next to JAYNE'S bed. Apart from the cable connected to JAYNE'S head, and the drip feeding into her arm, she looks perfectly healthy and alive.

MATTHEW

"Sandra's already checked her out. Her pulse and blood pressure are fine, and as you can see, she's breathing normally."

BEN stares at JAYNE MIDDLETON. As MATTHEW has said, she is breathing normally.

BEN

(In a low voice)

"It's going to work, isn't it?"

MATTHEW folds his arms as he also stares down at JAYNE.

MATTHEW

(Sighing)

"I hope so, Ben. Everything has gone to plan so far. The implant is working fine. The Crays have programmed it with the neural pathways that control Jayne's body. That way the implant can always keep her alive no matter what."

BEN

"What are the Crays doing now?"

MATTHEW

"Nothing. They're idle, and have been for a couple of days."

BEN looks up at MATTHEW.

BEN

(Concerned)

"Only the implant is keeping her breathing?"

MATTHEW

(Nodding)

"That's right, that is what it was supposed to do. Up to now, one of the Crays has been using the information they both learned about Jayne's neural pathways during the first week to slowly reform them. And even while the other Cray was identifying the connections between Jayne's brain and the rest of her nervous system during the second week, the first Cray has continued with the process of stimulating and refreshing her neural pathways. That refreshing has gradually caused the pathways between each neural cell to be reformed. For the last two days the implant has been supplying the energy to continue that refreshing process. During that time I've been running lots of diagnostic tests on it. I wanted to be sure that everything was working right before the ventilator was switched off today."

BEN

"And you don't need the Crays at all anymore?"

MATTHEW

"No, they've done their job. Jayne's brain itself is now the storage medium for her neural net once more. I can even unplug her from the Crays."

Before BEN can protest, MATTHEW leans forward and pulls the cable from the socket in the back of JAYNE'S head. JAYNE continues to breathe unaffected.

BEN stares at JAYNE in amazement.

BEN

"So what happens now?"

MATTHEW

"We wait and see if she wakes up."

BEN

"And if she doesn't?"

MATTHEW

(Shrugging his shoulders)

"Then I've failed, I suppose. I can still write up my thesis, I think I've got enough to get my Phd. But I'll always feel sad that I couldn't get her back."

BEN pats MATTHEW on the back.

BEN

(Smiling)

"You've done far more than you'll need for any Phd, Matthew. I'm going to the monthly board meeting this week, so I'll be away for a few days. But you can be sure that I'll let them all know what a damn fine job you've done here. Keep at it, Matthew! And remember, you've still got another week and a half left!"

CUT TO SCENE 16: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

MATTHEW is sitting at his desk. He has stayed the night. He looks dishevelled and very down-hearted. There has been no change in JAYNE, and she still lies unconscious in her bed.

SANDRA is carrying out a brain scan with the help of SAM, who is acting as a MedTec technician. This is the third time they have carried out the test, but always the results are the same. There is still no brain activity other than the rhythmic waves produced by the refreshing process.

When the test is over, SAM leaves with the equipment, but SANDRA stays behind. She comes to stand next to MATTHEW. She looks down at him sadly.

SANDRA

"Maybe we should talk to her."

MATTHEW looks puzzled as he stares at SANDRA.

MATTHEW

"What?"

SANDRA

"Talk to her. It's normal practice with people in comas. You try and stimulate them by talking to them, or playing their favourite records, or just reading to them. It sometimes works quite well."

MATTHEW grins and suddenly springs from his chair and hugs SANDRA. He dances her around the room despite her protests.

MATTHEW

(Overjoyed)

"You're a genius, Sandra! An absolute genius!"

SANDRA

(Embarrassed)

"Stop it, Matt! Somebody might come in!"

MATTHEW stops dancing her about and holds SANDRA at arms length.

MATTHEW

(Kissing her)

"I love you, Sandra! You're a genius! External stimulation! That's exactly what she needs! This place is dead! It's too quiet! That's why she won't wake up! Get some tapes, Sandra! Any tapes! Your favourite tapes! And CD's! I can play CD's on my mini-computer! I'll get a tape deck and some big speakers! Really big speakers!"

MATTHEW grabs a now very shocked and embarrassed SANDRA by the hand and runs towards the door, pulling her with him.

MATTHEW

"Come on, Sandra! By the time we've finished, this room is going to be booming louder than a Ford Escort on Saturday night!"

CUT TO SCENE 17: INT. COMPUTER CENTRE. DAY.

JULIA is sitting in the middle of the computer centre with a multitude of little electrodes attached to her head. TYLER is fussing around her with two technicians. They are busy attaching even more electrodes to her head. JULIA is still wearing her nurses uniform and she does not look happy.

JULIA

(Suspiciously)

"Are you sure this won't hurt?"

TYLER

"Of course it won't hurt. There's nothing to be alarmed at. It's all perfectly safe."

JULIA

(Unconvinced)

"But why me? Why not use one of your own technicians? Or Sam?"

TYLER

"Because they don't have what we want, and Rawlston is a man."

JULIA

(Sarcastically)

"Gosh! I'm glad you told me! I always wondered why Sam is flat-chested, speaks with a gruff voice, and pees standing up!"

TYLER does not look very impressed at JULIA'S joke. He continues attaching more electrodes.

JULIA

"So what have I got that they haven't? And why is being a man a problem? Well, apart from the obvious, I suppose."

JULIA shrugs as she speaks, causing all the electrodes and wires to jump, and some of them fall off.

TYLER shakes his head.

TYLER

(In exasperation)

"This would all have been a lot easier and quicker if you had let us shave your head in a few places."

JULIA

"Oh, yeah? And how many places do you want to be buried in after I use that razor on you?"

TYLER

"Well stop moving around then! I've got a flight to catch today, and if I miss it because you keep fidgeting, I'll make sure that Grant knows it was your fault!"

JULIA

"Alright, alright! Keep your knickers on! I'll sit still.

(Pointing her finger at him)

"But I'm warning you, if this hurts one little bit, I'll get even! I mean it!"

TYLER

"It won't hurt at all. Now stop complaining."

TYLER begins to replace the fallen electrodes.

JULIA

"Well answer my questions, then. If it's so safe, why not use one of your own technicians?"

TYLER

"Because they aren't field agents. They don't have the necessary expertise that I want. You and Rawlston do. But he is a man, and I don't want the sexual difference to cause any problems. Not that I think it would, but it's better to be safe at this early stage. There is a lot more analysis of the data we have retrieved yet to be done, so I wouldn't even be doing this if Ben hadn't insisted that we download something to the subject of our field trial. He wanted something that will have an immediate and noticeable effect as soon as she wakes. Well, he's going to get it.

"You and Rawlston have a particular trait. It comes from a long association with the Corporation while carrying out it's most sinister affairs. It's a knowing sort of loyalty, one linked irrevocably with fear. A sort of worldly wisdom that comes from dealing in the dirt that we scientists and other personnel are shielded from. When Jayne Middleton wakes up, I want her to have that same wisdom, I want her to have that same understanding and acceptance of the Corporation. She won't question where she is, or what happened to her, she'll know. She'll know and accept it all as her own memories."

JULIA

(Derisively)

"You're wasting your time. You could download the Encyclopedia Britannica into sleeping beauty's head and you'll still get no results. If she wakes up, I'll eat my first born."

TYLER

"She's already breathing on her own."

JULIA

"I know, but so does a sponge. Try having a conversation with one."

TYLER

"We'll see."

TYLER steps back. The last electrode is finally in place. He goes over to the IBM mainframe where his technicians are now all waiting expectantly. He sits down next to them at a desk in front of a keyboard and monitor. They began to go over their notes and discuss levels and neural pathways.

JULIA is now left on her own. She taps her feet nervously as she stares at the wires that trail across the floor to the computer from the electrodes on her head.

TYLER

"Right! Here we go!"

TYLER begins to type on the keyboard.

JULIA'S head starts to tingle all over, and her blonde hair stands on end from the static.

JULIA

(Surprised)

"Ow!"

TYLER

"Don't be such a big baby! It'll be over in a few seconds."

JULIA

(Upset and nervous)

"I don't like this! Turn it off!"

TYLER

(Dismissive)

"Just a moment! It'll be finished soon."

JULIA

(Insistent)

"Turn it off!"

TYLER

"Just a few more seconds."

JULIA

(Shouting)

"Turn it off! Now!"

The process is tuned off, and slowly, JULIA'S hair descends back to it's normal position.

TYLER

"There! It's finished! I told you it wouldn't take long!"

TYLER gets up and walks towards JULIA. JULIA doesn't wait for him to reach her. She quickly tears all the electrodes from her head, flinging them in all directions. Then she stands up. It is a mistake, because she immediately feels light-headed, and sways on her feet. TYLER has reached her by then and holds on to her, steadying her.

TYLER

(Concerned)

"You might feel a little bit dizzy for a while, but it will pass."

JULIA looks up at TYLER in a daze, but in a few seconds her expression hardens, and she quickly stamps on his foot.

TYLER cries out with the unexpected pain. He lets go of JULIA, and drops down onto the chair she had previously been sitting on. He clutches at his toe.

TYLER

(In pain)

"What did you do that for?"

JULIA

(In triumph)

"I told you I'd get even! Hurts does it? Well, it serves you right! I'm going for a pizza!"

JULIA storms out of the computer centre without another word.

TYLER is left sitting on the chair, still rubbing his toe.

TYLER

(Muttering)

"Maniac."

One of the technicians walks over to him. He looks slightly worried.

TECHNICIAN #1

"Mr Tyler, have a look at this."

TECHNICIAN #1 holds out a computer print-out which TYLER takes from him and reads carefully.

TYLER

(Worriedly)

"This can't be right. That's a colossal amount of memory space. Far too much memory space for what we transferred."

TECHNICIAN #1

"That's what we thought. It nearly filled one of the Crays."

TYLER

"And it's all been downloaded to the implant?"

TECHNICIAN #1

"Yes sir, the radio link worked fine, and it all went through a treat."

TYLER

"We must have under-estimated the amount of memory space we needed. Check over the figures again, just to be sure."

As TECHNICIAN #1 hurries away to do as he requested, TYLER stares at the print-out and rubs his forehead. He looks worried.

CUT TO SCENE 18: INT. CORPORATION HQ IN THE USA - BOARDROOM. DAY.

The boardroom is very large and impressive. There are oak-panelled walls and deep leather chairs. The table is also made of oak. It is immense and heavy, and inlaid with many different types of wood. Gold leaf decorates it's edges.

The entire board is in attendance. There is a lot of general chit-chat as colleagues greet one another in a friendly manner. All of them except for one are men in dark suits.

The only woman is ROSANNA CASAROTTO.

ROSANNA is Uruguayan. She is thirty-two, tall with a very well shaped and curvy figure. She has long, jet-black hair, green eyes and a dark complexion. When she speaks it is with a Spanish accent. She is extravagant and always wears red.

BEN and TYLER stand together. They watch ROSANNA as she pours coffee and smiles demurely at some of the other board members.

BEN

(In a low voice)

"I hate it when she does that. It always reminds me of a cat offering cheese to the mice."

TYLER

(Alarmed)

"I wouldn't call the Corporation's Head of Special Projects a cat. Especially not in here. Rosanna Casarotto probably has this room bugged with microphones that can pick up the tiniest whispers for exactly that sort of idle comment."

BEN

(Wryly)

"Do you think I'll go into her little book?"

TYLER glares at BEN but doesn't reply.

All conversation now ceases as the chairman, DOUGLAS GRANT, comes in.

GRANT is in his late fifties. He is a Scotsman. He is tall and heavily built, with grey hair and blue eyes. He is loud and overbearing. He speaks with a Scottish accent.

Everyone quickly takes their places in a sudden hush. TYLER sits on the opposite side of the table from BEN. It is a political aswell as a physical divide.

GRANT

(In a booming voice)

"Good morning, everyone."

The board members return his greeting as one, referring to him as 'Mr Grant,' like school children greeting a teacher. BEN does the same.

The meeting starts. BEN'S project is the twenty-fifth item on the agenda. It takes three hours to get there. And during that time, several board members are highly praised for their efforts while two others are screamed and bawled at by GRANT for their failure.

BEN watches, and begins to sweat. BEN also watches ROSANNA. She has said nothing, but has quietly written down the names of the two failures in a small black book she has positioned on the table next to her copy of the agenda.

GRANT

(Bellowing)

"Item twenty-five! Mr Watkins! You're costing me a fortune! What have you ta tell me?"

BEN

(Startled and too quickly)

"Everything is going according to plan, Mr Grant."

GRANT

(Sweetly)

"Oh, aye? It is, is it? And who's plan might that be? Ours, or Matthew Hall's?"

BEN glances nervously at TYLER. But TYLER keeps his head down, as if reading his notes.

BEN

(More confidently)

"Both, Mr Grant. When I left, the subject of the field trial had been disconnected from the ventilator and was breathing on her own. Her neural net has already been recovered, and Mr Tyler's computer people are already analysing-"

GRANT

(Bellowing)

"Donnae steal his glory, Mr Watkins! Mr Tyler will have his own say in a moment! Stick to your own report!"

BEN

(Nodding)

"Yes, Mr Grant."

(He pauses to take a deep breath before continuing)

"As you so rightly pointed out, the project has taken an unexpected turn. But I believe this to be a bonus rather than a failure. Matthew Hall is confident of re-awakening the subject of the field trial, and the benefits of this will far exceed our original intent."

Ben gradually stops talking when he sees GRANT raise his hand. Silence falls in the room.

GRANT sits back in his chair and lowers his hand.

GRANT

(In a much quieter voice)

"Let me just recap for a moment. Correct me if I'm wrong, Mr Watkins, but the purpose of this extremely expensive project was threefold:"

(He counts off the points on his fingers)

"One, ta extract information from a person's mind without them knowing; Two, ta alter a person's memory permanently, again without them being aware of the change; And three, ta create such a change in a person's mind that their very personality and beliefs are altered forever. Not a very run of the mill project, you must agree. Now, all this is very expensive, but if the project succeeds,then the benefits will vastly outweigh the costs.

"A measurement of success for this project is in achieving any one of the objectives I have already mentioned. You have tried ta inform us that you have. But that's Mr Tyler's field, and his moment of glory, not yours. Because he's the technologist, while you are the business-man. Your role is in managing the project. Like the captain of a ship, you have ta guide it through the murky waters that lie between the rocks of financial ruin and technological failure.

"So, Mr Watkins, have you achieved your objectives? Is the project still on course and in safe waters under your steady guidance? Or have we merely spent a fortune in reviving some irrelevant person from the North of England?"

BEN hesitates and glances at ROSANNA. Her hand is raised, waiting patiently to add his name to her book.

TYLER

(Coughs politely before speaking)

"Excuse me, Mr Grant, but I believe that Mr Watkins is correct, even despite the apparent loss of control in the project's direction."

GRANT

"Oh, you do, do you? And why do you believe that, Mr Tyler? Please tell us, we are all listening."

GRANT waves his hand at the people around the table. He is right, they are all listening. None more so than BEN.

TYLER

"As you pointed out, Mr Grant. There are three objectives to the project. But the purpose of this field trial was to achieve only the first objective, to retrieve information from the subject's mind. This has been achieved successfully, as Ben Watkins inferred, and as you will see in my written report.

"However, the current loss in the project's direction has opened up a very interesting prospect. And that is the possibility of achieving both the second and third objectives within the same field trial. This has many benefits.

"Firstly, any delays in finding suitable subjects for the next field trials will be eliminated, leading to an acceleration in the project's overall timescales. And, secondly, the current subject is ideal for the final field trial, I don't think we could find anyone better.

"What isn't in my report, Mr Grant, is that my people have already input data into the subject's memory at Ben Watkins request, and checked it several days later. It doesn't degrade. Although we cannot be totally sure of success unless the subject reawakes, I am now confident that the second objective can be achieved. I want to press on to the third.

"Mr Grant, I believe we can succeed in achieving this third objective. I believe we can alter the subject's mind to such an extent that she will not even question her environment, nor her motives. But to do that, we first need Matthew Hall to succeed. We need that woman both alive and awake.

"Because of all this, I propose that we extend this field trial indefinitely, or at least until the board thinks that it has gained all benefit from it. I know this means that we will lose some valuable data from the implant, and the cost of the implant itself. But the ability to reawaken trauma victims from their comas could be highly lucrative for the Corporation's medical subsidiaries, and this will more than recoup for those losses."

BEN is stunned. And the only sound to break the silence in the room is ROSANNA dropping her pen on the oak table in obvious dismay. Even GRANT is thoughtful for a few seconds, his head down.

GRANT

"Mr Watkins, what are the implications of extending the field trial as Mr Tyler proposes?"

BEN

(He swallows)

"None, apart from the obvious."

GRANT

(Raising his head to stare at Ben)

"The obvious?"

BEN

"The deadline when the relatives of the deceased are expecting the return of her body."

GRANT

"When is that?"

TYLER

"Fifteenth of May. Next Friday, in fact."

GRANT turns his head slightly towards ROSANNA.

GRANT

"Deal with it please, Ms Casarotto."

ROSANNA nods, and taking up her pen, she makes a note in her book.

GRANT

(To TYLER)

"Your proposal is accepted, Mr Tyler."

(To BEN)

"As for you, Mr Watkins, I'll expect a revised schedule from you for the project by tomorrow morning. And this time, I will not tolerate any slippage. Do you understand me?"

BEN

"Yes, Mr Grant."

GRANT

"Good."

GRANT stares down at his agenda.

GRANT

(Bellowing)

"Item twenty-six! Mr Collins!"

CUT TO SCENE 19: INT. MONITORING ROOM. DAY.

SAM enters the monitoring room and is suddenly deafened by loud music and someone talking in a very loud voice. It is MATTHEW'S voice. SAM quickly steps inside and closes the door behind him.

JULIA is sitting by the monitor dancing on her chair as she listens to the loud music. The music and the loud voice completely fills the room.

SAM

(Smiling and in a raised voice)

"Some people have the hardest jobs!"

JULIA looks round and smiles back at him.

JULIA

(Also in a raised voice)

"Welcome to Radio MedTec! Seventies music a specialty! And it's all courtesy of our resident DJ's 'Super Seventies Sandra,' and 'I've Got No Rhythm Hall!'"

SAM laughs as he walks towards her. He raises his hand and slices it across his throat in an obvious gesture, and JULIA turns down the volume. SAM stares at the picture on the monitor.

SAM'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: CLOSE SHOT OF THE MONITOR SCREEN SHOWING JAYNE'S ROOM.

There are tapes and CD's strewn all across JAYNE'S bed, and MATTHEW is sitting by his computer reading the morning newspaper out load. He is shouting above the music.

SAM

"How long has this been going on?"

JULIA

"Since last night. Hall brought the music system into the room yesterday afternoon."

JULIA points at the monitor screen, indicating the speakers, tape deck and amplifiers that are now littered around the room.

JULIA

"And Sandra brought in the seventies stuff this morning. Until then, it wasn't so bad. Hall had a few good CD's, but it was mostly classical stuff. Sandra is definitely a seventies retard."

SAM

"If it was that loud in here, what's it like in there?"

JULIA

"I don't know. The last time I went in there I wore ear plugs."

SAM

"Ben would go nuts if he knew what was going on."

JULIA

"Why? There's nothing wrong with a little music."

SAM

"There is if it wakes her up."

JULIA

(Laughing)

"You would need a speaker the size of Jodrell Bank to wake up that slab of meat. She was dead before she got here, and she'll be just as dead when she leaves. There's no way that she's going to wake up. She is definitely mutton."

SAM

"And you're all heart."

JULIA

(Grinning very sweetly and falsely, and fluttering her eyelids)

"You're so kind!"

SAM ignores her and continues to stare at the monitor screen in concern.

SAM

"I still think we should stop this."

JULIA

"And how will you explain that to the Music Master in there? How about, 'Sorry, but we don't want the loud music to wake up Nefertiti because next week we're going to slice her head in half to retrieve our expensive implant?'"

SAM glares at JULIA. He isn't impressed by her sarcasm.

SAM

"Something tells me that when the time does come to retrieve the implant for analysis, you will be standing at the front of the queue with a machete."

JULIA

"Wrong! After all the cleaning up I've had to do over the past few weeks, I'd use a chain saw."

SAM

"You do know that if she wakes up, that might never happen?"

JULIA

(In a saintly voice)

"And I'm a fairy Godmother who works for an organisation that loves people."

JULIA picks up a pencil from the desk and taps SAM on the shoulder.

JULIA

"Zing! You're an expert whose every word is considered to be of momentous significance!"

(More bitterly)

"Get serious, Sam! There's no way her head is going to survive in one piece passed Friday!"

SAM

(Slightly annoyed)

"I am being serious. There's a hell of a lot of money in this, and there's no way the Corporation will just throw it all away if there's the remotest chance of a pay-back."

JULIA

"The only pay-back they'll get from her is if they sell her by the pound."

SAM

(Insistent)

"Not if she's awake by Friday!"

JULIA

(Very sure of herself)

"It'll never happen. She'll leave here just as dead as when she got here, a little more deaf maybe, but just as dead."

SAM

"Would you like to take a bet on that?"

JULIA

"Next months pay-check?"

SAM

"You're on!"

They slap hands and then SAM turns and walks to the door where he pauses.

SAM

"Ben will be back tomorrow. It will be up to him to decide what to do. But if that music stays on, I'm telling you, I'll be spending your pay-check next month."

JULIA

"Nuts!"

JULIA turns up the volume on the monitor before SAM can say anything more.

SAM watches her as she begins to dance on her chair again. He shakes his head in dismay and leaves.

CUT TO SCENE 20: INT. AIRPORT. NIGHT.

BEN and TYLER are preparing to board their flight back to England. They are surrounded by other passengers in the queue for the check-in desk, so when they speak, they do so in whispers. BEN is still unhappy about TYLER'S unexpected coup.

BEN

"I suppose you're pleased with yourself?"

TYLER

(Confidently)

"Don't make a fuss, now, Ben. You know I'm right. And in any case, I saved your hide back there, and you know it."

BEN

"Yeah! And left me Head of the Project in name only! You knifed me, Tyler! You bastard!"

TYLER

(In a harsh whisper)

"Be thankful that it was my knife and not Rosanna Casarotto's! You may have lost face, but at least you're still alive, so stop complaining! If I had kept silent everything would have been over with. But it wouldn't have just been your hide that Casarotto would have hung out to dry! I was saving myself, not you! As for being Head of the Project, I don't care one bit about that. It's an administrator's job. You can keep it! I have much more interesting things to do!"

BEN

"Like going on to the third objective?"

TYLER

(Full of confidence)

"I've already done it."

BEN

(Furious)

"What? You've attempted the mind alteration without my say so?"

TYLER

"You told me to download something that would give an immediate result, something that we can see has worked. You were very insistent I remember. Well, you've got that and more."

BEN

(Glancing round nervously at the other passengers nearby)

"I didn't mean for you to go the whole way! You've gone too far, Tyler! You could have ruined everything!"

TYLER

(Arrogantly)

"I know what I'm doing. And it'll work, I tell you. When Jayne Middleton wakes up, she will accept her predicament as if she had volunteered for it."

BEN

(Unimpressed)

"Ha! I have more confidence in Hall than I do in you!"

TYLER

"It will work! I guarantee it."

BEN

"Guarantee it? You better believe it! It's your head on the block now! You mouthed off in that boardroom. You told Grant that you could achieve the third stage. Hell, you even told him you had succeeded in the second stage, but we don't even know that for sure!"

TYLER

"When Middleton first awakes, she'll speak only in Italian."

BEN

(Completely confused)

"What?"

TYLER

"To be sure that it worked, and to satisfy your original request, I swopped her language memories around. It was all very simple. You should read my reports. All I had to do was alter the length of the memory of each language so that to Jayne, Italian now stretches back to her childhood, while English is only a few years old. Simple."

BEN

(Sceptical)

"You're meddling in things you don't know enough about, Tyler. Altering the odd memory is one thing, but going for a complete memory change, that's different. You should have waited, for that at least."

TYLER

"It was you that made up my mind. 'Do it before she wakes up,' you said. A valid point. The memory transfer is much more likely to be successful while she is comatose and unaware. Anyway, it's done. All we have to do now is hope that she wakes up."

TYLER reaches the front of the queue and approaches the check-in desk. BEN waits behind him.

BEN

(Muttering under his breath)

"Or hope that she doesn't..."

CUT TO SCENE 21: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

It is Friday morning and the music is as loud as usual. By now, MATTHEW has two days growth on his chin, and he looks a right state. He is reading the morning newspapers out loud to JAYNE. JAYNE continues to make no response.

SANDRA and SAM enter the room and carry out another brain scan. MATTHEW turns down the volume of the music while they carry out the test. The results are the same as always, there is still no significant change. They leave and MATTHEW turns up the volume again and goes on to the next daily newspaper.

The day passes as the previous days have passed. MATTHEW starts with the broadsheets, then he goes on to the tabloids. He leaves the scandal sheets to the last. He read everything out loud, from beginning to end, even holding the newspaper over JAYNE as if to show her the pictures.

At four-thirty in the afternoon, MATTHEW starts on the local newspapers. SANDRA brings them in for him.

SANDRA

(Voice raised above the music)

"I don't know how you can stand much more of this. You're going to go deaf."

MATTHEW quickly turns the music down.

MATTHEW

"What?"

SANDRA

"Never mind!"

SANDRA shakes her head in despair and quickly leaves.

MATTHEW smiles and turns the volume back up again. He picks up one of the evening papers SANDRA has brought him.

MATTHEW

(To JAYNE)

"Alright, Jayne, Manchester Evening News, first!"

MATTHEW reads out the headlines. The main news is the same as it has been for the rest of the national newspapers, and MATTHEW now hardly pays any attention to what he is reading aloud. He soon moves on to the local news, which is a bit different.

MATTHEW

(Out loud to JAYNE)

"'Three killed in blast. An explosion killed three people in Oldham in the early hours of this morning. Two Fire Appliances were called out to fight the resulting blaze which spread to three houses in a quiet residential area.

"'Investigators later blamed a faulty gas main for the explosion, and said that all three houses would have to be pulled down.'"

CLOSE SHOT OF JAYNE WHILE MATTHEW IS READING ALOUD FROM THE NEWSPAPERS.

JAYNE twitches when MATTHEW talks of the death of her parents.

MATTHEW

"'Those killed in the blast were John Davies, a young man living on his own in one of the houses, and an elderly couple, Graham and Amanda Middleton, who were asleep in the house next door to where the blast occu-'"

MATTHEW stops in mid flow and leans forward, staring at JAYNE. He looks shocked. Not just because he has suddenly realised what he is reading, but also because he has seen JAYNE'S body twitch out of the corner of his eye.

CLOSE SHOT - MATTHEW'S POINT OF VIEW.

JAYNE appears to be still comatose. She is breathing softly.

With rising excitement, MATTHEW quickly turns the music off and re-reads the news article, raising his voice and speaking very clearly and deliberately when he gets to the appropriate part. He also watches JAYNE very closely.

MATTHEW

(To JAYNE)

"'Those killed in the blast were John Davies, a young man living on his own in one of the houses, and an elderly couple, Graham and Amanda Middleton, who were asleep in the house next door to where the blast occurred.'"

Again JAYNE twitches. Her whole body shivers.

Excited now, MATTHEW continues with the story.

MATTHEW

(To JAYNE)

"'Neighbours said that it was quite sad, as Mr and Mrs Middleton had lost their only daughter in a car accident only a few months earlier...."

CLOSE SHOT - MATTHEW'S POINT OF VIEW.

MATTHEW'S voice trails off as he sees JAYNE'S mouth open. As he stares at her, JAYNE takes a deep breath and sighs, moaning softly.

CUT TO SCENE 22: VIRTUAL REALITY. INSIDE JAYNE'S MIND.

Everything is fuzzy. MATTHEW'S voice and the sound of music echo faintly in the distance. Sometimes they are near, and sometimes they are far away."

The images of both GRAHAM and AMANDA appear in JAYNE'S mind, and JAYNE knows that they are both dead. We hear JAYNE'S VOICE, and it has a strong Lancashire accent.

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Surprised and dismayed)

"Why are you dead? I'm the one who is supposed to be dead, not you!"

GRAHAM and AMANDA smile and shrug their shoulders, but they don't speak.

JAYNE'S VOICE

(With sudden realisation)

"But I'm not dead, am I? I'm alive. How can that be?"

JULIA'S image now appears.

JULIA'S VOICE

"You're the living dead, that's why! A corpse! A sleeping beauty! A slab of meat!"

JAYNE'S VOICE

"That's cruel! Why am I thinking these things?"

JULIA'S image disappears and is replaced by a white rabbit.

JAYNE'S VOICE

(With joy)

"Harvey!"

JAYNE'S mind is suddenly filled with memories of her pet rabbit. JAYNE is twelve, and Harvey is big and white and fluffy. First she is playing with him in her bedroom, then she is with Harvey in the garden. Finally, Harvey is on the road, and the twelve year old JAYNE is screaming as a car runs over him.

JAYNE is grown up again, and it is her that is driving the car. It is dark, and sitting in the middle of the road, his nose twitching, is Harvey.

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Desperate)

"Move, Harvey! You'll get run over again!"

The lights from JAYNE'S car shine back at her in Harvey's eyes. He doesn't move.

JAYNE'S VOICE

"I knew it was you. As soon as I saw you. You came back to get me, didn't you? It was my fault you got out of the garden, it was my fault you got run over. I didn't mean it! Honest, I didn't! Angela was at the door and I was only gone a minute! Move, Harvey! Move!"

Harvey doesn't move, he just sits there, staring at her.

JAYNE swerves, there is a glimpse of a lamp-post, and she crashes.

The image changes, there is a MEDIC and JAYNE is now inside an ambulance. The medic is asking her questions.

MEDIC'S VOICE

(Frantic)

"What's your name, love? Talk to me! Come on, love! What's your name?"

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Weakly)

"Jayne....My name's Jayne..."

JULIA'S image briefly returns.

JULIA'S VOICE

(Strong and insistent)

"It's Julia! Not Jayne! Get a hold of yourself you daft cow!"

JAYNE is back in the ambulance, the MEDIC above her.

MEDIC'S VOICE

"What day is it, Jayne? Stay with me, now! Stay with me......!"

The image of the MEDIC and the ambulance fades. Everything becomes dark and silent.

Suddenly, JULIA'S image returns even more strongly than before, and everything becomes bright and vivid. But it is also very confusing.

JULIA'S VOICE

(Shouting)

"Ow! That hurts! I'm going to get you, Tyler!"

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Annoyed)

"Who is that?"

JULIA'S VOICE

"You, you daft cow!"

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Confused)

"Me?"

JULIA'S VOICE

"Yes, me! Who did you think it was? Casarotto?"

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Even more confused)

"Who's Casarotto?"

JULIA'S VOICE

"Grant's hatchet woman at the Corporation!"

JAYNE'S VOICE

"What Corporation?"

JULIA'S VOICE

(In exasperation)

"That Corporation, you stupid piece of mutton!"

JAYNE'S VOICE

"Oh yes, of course. I'd forgotten. Unless that was all a dream. Are you a dream, too?"

JULIA'S VOICE

"Only in bed, dear. Only in bed....."

JULIA'S image fades. The light gets brighter, but everything is still fuzzy. The voice and the music both get much louder.

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Complaining)

"That voice is giving me a headache! My head hurts! Why does my head hurt so much? It's not supposed to hurt! Tyler promised me that it wouldn't hurt! The liar! I'll get even with him for that! And no one told me that it would be this disgusting, either! Lying here day after day in bed, sometimes in my own excrement! And me having to clean it up, too! This isn't what I agreed to! Why does Benjamin always give me the worst jobs? And how come my parents have died when I haven't got any?"

The images of GRAHAM and AMANDA return, but now they are in the ICU at the hospital. It is the moment when JAYNE'S life support machines are being switched off.

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Surprised)

"Don't they look sad?"

JULIA'S VOICE

"And stupid."

JULIA'S image returns. It is as if both she and JAYNE are together, watching GRAHAM and AMANDA in the ICU.

JAYNE'S VOICE

"Not you again? I thought you'd gone."

JULIA'S VOICE

"How can I go? I belong here just as much as you do. Anyway, I'm older. You go."

JAYNE'S VOICE

"I will not! This is my body, and I was here first!"

JULIA'S VOICE

"Not for long. Mummy and Daddy are about to pull the plug. Look at them both. Why don't they just get on with it and get out of the way? Why are they taking so long? Morons."

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Upset)

"Don't say that about my parents! They're dead!"

JULIA'S VOICE

"They're not my parents! I don't have any parents!"

JAYNE'S VOICE

"But I do! And they're dead!"

(With sudden realisation)

"Mum and Dad are dead! But I'm the one being switched off! I'm the one that should be dead!"

JULIA'S VOICE

"Yep! Dead as a door-nail, but not quite as stiff! Bye-bye!"

JAYNE'S VOICE

"But I'm not dead!"

JULIA'S VOICE

(Disappointed)

"Bollocks....So why are they switching you off if you're not dead? Real parents wouldn't do that. And if you're here watching them, who are they switching off? And why didn't you say something to them when you spoke to them afterwards?"

The image in JAYNE'S mind is now of GRAHAM and AMANDA in the waiting room. But instead of JULIA talking to them, it is JAYNE.

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Solemnly)

"Hello, Mr and Mrs Middleton? My name is Julia Connors. I am so sorry for your loss, and I do hope you don't mind me speaking to you now...."

JULIA'S VOICE

"If they were my parents, I would have said something to them at the hospital. Why didn't you? Rabbit got your tongue?"

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Confused)

"But I didn't.....because..."

JULIA'S VOICE

(Pressing)

"And how could you be in two places at once? How could you have been talking to your parents if you had just been switched off? And how could you clean yourself up when you were in a coma?"

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Very confused)

"But....I don't...."

JULIA'S VOICE

"The answer's simple: You're a ghost. Because you're dead. Daft cow. I'm glad you're dead. Serves you right. Bye-bye!"

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Determined)

"For the last time, I am not going! Now explain it to me! Why does it serve me right? And why do you keep talking about me as if I was someone else? As if I was someone you detested? What are you doing here? What's happened?"

JULIA'S VOICE

(Disappointedly)

"Oh, alright then..."

The light gets brighter and brighter. The music has now stopped, but JAYNE can still hear the voice. It is much clearer. It is MATTHEW'S voice.

CUT TO SCENE 23: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

JAYNE begins to awake. She opens her eyes and sees MATTHEW leaning over her. He is holding a newspaper.

MATTHEW

"Jayne? Jayne? Can you hear me? Wake up, Jayne."

CUT TO SCENE 24: VIRTUAL REALITY. INSIDE JAYNE'S MIND.

JAYNE'S mind is now filled with the image of MATTHEW leaning over her.

JAYNE'S VOICE

"I know him, that's Matthew."

JULIA'S VOICE

"Arrogant little git, isn't he?"

JAYNE'S VOICE

"I have to tell him what's happened. He doesn't know anything. It's not fair...."

CUT TO SCENE 25: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

JAYNE awakes and begins arguing with MATTHEW. But MATTHEW cannot understand her because she is speaking in Italian. JAYNE tries to get out of bed, but MATTHEW holds onto her while he calls out for SANDRA.

MATTHEW

(Calling out)

"Sandra! Sandra! Get in here, quick! Jayne's awake!"

JAYNE begins to struggle with MATTHEW, who now holds onto her wrists.

JAYNE

(Hoarsely)

"Non e gi'usto. Io non prendutto la oppotunita a dire ciao a loro. Anche quando io visto loro. Ma io non sapere prima. Io non sapere quelle vanno a morire."

JAYNE becomes more emotional, and her voice gets louder. She struggles harder with MATTHEW, and begins to cry.

JAYNE

"Non e gi'usto, Matthew! Non e gi'usto! Io vado a pagare lui dietro per questo! Io vado a pagare Tyler dietro!"

SANDRA enters the room and stands in the doorway. She is shocked at the sight of the wide-awake JAYNE.

MATTHEW looks round and sees SANDRA.

MATTHEW

(To SANDRA)

"What's she saying? I can't understand a word of it, but she knows my name. How could she know my name?"

SANDRA

"Maybe she heard us talking."

SANDRA is still standing in the doorway. She is frozen to the spot.

JAYNE is still struggling with MATTHEW. She is crying and still speaking in Italian.

JAYNE

"Esso Harvey colpa io incidente la macchina. Non e mio colpa! Ma io non sapere mio madre e padre vanno a morire! Non e gi'usto! Io vado a pagare Tyler dietro per questo! Non e gi'usto, Matthew!"

MATTHEW

(To SANDRA, begging)

"Do something, Sandra! Help me to calm her down!"

SANDRA finally responds. She rushes into the room and takes one of JAYNE'S hands, prizing MATTHEW'S fingers from her wrist.

SANDRA

(To MATTHEW)

"Don't be so rough with her. You'll scare her. Go and do something useful. Get her a drink of water. Go on!"

MATTHEW hesitates before letting go of JAYNE and hurrying out the door.

Sandra then turns to Jayne and speaks to her clearly and calmly.

SANDRA

"Listen to me, Jayne. You're speaking in Italian and we can't understand you. Do you hear me? Speak in English. And calm down, we're trying to help you."

JAYNE stops struggling and stares closely at SANDRA.

JAYNE

"Io sapere tu, tu nome e Sandra, si?"

SANDRA

"In English, Jayne. In English."

JAYNE

(Puzzled)

"In English?"

SANDRA

(Smiling)

"That's better! Now calm down, love, and everything will be alright."

JAYNE begins to look around the room.

MATTHEW now returns with a glass of water, and as soon as JAYNE sees him she reaches for the glass.

JAYNE

"Aqua! Si, io sono sete."

SANDRA helps JAYNE to sit up, and MATTHEW holds onto the glass as JAYNE drinks. She takes big gulps and nearly chokes. She coughs and spits, then drinks some more. She finishes the lot.

MATTHEW

"More?"

JAYNE

"Si, grazie."

JAYNE waits for MATTHEW to get up, but he doesn't move.

JAYNE

(In realisation)

"Oh! Yes, thank you!"

MATTHEW

(Smiling)

"Okay."

MATTHEW goes out to refill the glass.

JAYNE looks at SANDRA who also smiles at her. JAYNE smiles back weakly.

SANDRA

"Do you feel better now?"

JAYNE nods, but doesn't reply. They sit in silence until MATTHEW returns with another full glass of water. JAYNE takes another big drink. She finally begins to relax. And when she speaks in English, it is with a Lancashire accent.

JAYNE

(Slowly and carefully)

"I'm sorry, but I feel very.....confused."

SANDRA strokes JAYNE'S hair.

SANDRA

"That's alright, love. Just you take it easy. You've been through a lot, so if you want to talk in Italian, or shout and scream, you just go right ahead."

JAYNE suddenly bursts into tears.

JAYNE

"Mum and dad are dead! It's not fair!"

SANDRA looks questioningly at MATTHEW. He holds up the local newspaper.

MATTHEW

"I was reading it out like usual. There was a fire at her parents house. It was what finally woke her up."

SANDRA

(In shock, to MATTHEW)

"Oh, no!"

(To JAYNE)

"Oh you poor thing!"

SANDRA puts her arms around JAYNE and hugs her tightly.

SANDRA

"After all you've been through aswell! And now they'll never know you woke up!"

SANDRA begins crying along with JAYNE.

MATTHEW sits on the side of the bed and watches them. He reaches out hesitantly and begins to stroke JAYNE'S hair. Slowly, MATTHEW smiles.

MATTHEW

"Wait until Ben sees this."

CUT TO SCENE 26: INT. BEN'S OFFICE. DAY.

BEN is working at his desk. He has only just arrived back from the board meeting. He is tired looking and unshaven. The telephone on his desk rings. BEN answers it.

BEN

"Watkins. Yes?"

SAM'S VOICE

"She's awake, sir. I think you better get down here."

BEN

"What language is she speaking?"

SAM'S VOICE

(Surprised)

"Italian. How did you know, sir?"

BEN

(With a sigh)

"Lucky, I guess. I'll come down when Matthew calls me."

BEN puts the phone down and sits back in his chair. Thoughtful, he waits for MATTHEW'S call.

A moment later and the telephone rings again.

CUT TO SCENE 27: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

When BEN arrives, he finds JAYNE still in tears over the news of the death of her parents. SANDRA is doing her best to console her, while MATTHEW just sits at his desk with a smug grin on his face.

BEN quickly takes the initiative.

BEN

(Authoritively)

"Alright! The pair of you, out!"

MATTHEW and SANDRA both stare at him in surprise but do not move.

BEN

"You heard me! Out!"

BEN ignores their protests as he herds them both out the door.

BEN

"Go on! I need to talk to Jayne alone! We need to talk about everything that's happened to her, and we don't need you two listening in! You've both done a fine job! Now it's over! Out you go!"

CUT TO SCENE 28: INT. CORRIDOR. DAY.

MATTHEW and SANDRA are pushed into the corridor by BEN, and the door closed behind them.

SANDRA glares at MATTHEW.

SANDRA

(Annoyed)

"Over, is it? Right then! It's nearly the end of my shift, so if that's the way he thinks he can talk to me, I'm going home!"

MATTHEW smiles at SANDRA and shrugs his shoulders.

MATTHEW

"He is the boss!"

SANDRA shakes her head in indignation and storms off. Still smiling, MATTHEW slowly follows her.

CUT TO SCENE 29: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

BEN is now sitting on the side of JAYNE'S bed. She is still crying. BEN takes her hand in his. He is gentle and soothing.

BEN

"You just take it easy, Jayne. If you want to bawl and cry for the next hour and a half, I'm happy to wait. And when you're good and ready I'll explain anything and everything you want to know. Okay?"

JAYNE nods, but continues to cry. She holds on tightly to BEN'S hand and leans on his shoulder. In between her tears, she occasionally mutters things in both English and Italian. When she speaks in English, it is again with a very broad Lancashire accent.

BEN waits for JAYNE'S tears to subside before he speaks.

BEN

"I'm so sorry to hear of the death of your parents, Jayne. It was so unexpected, and so tragic at this time. But Matthew told me that it was hearing the news that finally awoke you. And although I didn't know them both, I'm sure it was a trade they would have willingly made to get you back. I am so sorry."

JAYNE

(Still sobbing)

"Thank you, Benjamin."

Although JAYNE'S recognition and use of his name surprises BEN, he squeezes her hand and smiles at her warmly.

JAYNE smiles weakly back, and at last she seems to recover her composure.

BEN

"How do you feel, Jayne?"

JAYNE rubs the tears from her eyes.

JAYNE

"I feel very confused. I keep thinking different things, as if I had two memories, or as if I was in two places at once. Sometimes even my feelings are different. And for some reason I keep thinking that I should be out of this bed instead of in it."

JAYNE now rubs at her face and brow.

JAYNE

"I don't know what to think, Benjamin. And my head hurts."

BEN

"I'm sure it will all pass in time. You've been through far more than anyone could have imagined. It's bound to have some effect. And what with your bereavement, I don't think anyone will expect you to do anything more for awhile. You take it easy and rest, and I'll see about finding you a better room."

(BEN glances quickly around him)

"This place was never meant to be a bedroom, and I see that Matthew has got it into a bit of a mess. The sooner we find you somewhere more comfortable to rest, the better."

JAYNE

"Ma io non e-"

JAYNE stops, closes her eyes, takes a deep breath, and then replies in the most perfect upper-class English tones.

JAYNE

"But I don't want to rest. I want to get up. I've been lying here like a slab of meat for long enough."

BEN notices her change in accent but does his best not to show it. He has recognised it as JULIA'S accent.

BEN

"Tomorrow, maybe."

JAYNE

"But, Benjamin-"

BEN

"No buts. You might feel okay now, but you do need to rest. Let your mind get used to things. You've had a couple of big shocks, so sleep it off. Things will be a lot clearer after a couple of days of proper sleep and rest. Anyway, you've earned it."

JAYNE'S Lancashire accent now returns.

JAYNE

(With a sigh)

"Alright. Just a couple of days. Then I'm out of here. Agreed?"

BEN

(Nodding)

"Agreed. Now that that's settled, is there anything you want to ask me? Anything not clear in your mind? How you got here, who Matthew and Sandra are? Anything?"

JAYNE is thoughtful.

JAYNE

(Hesitantly)

"No....I think I remember. I know I volunteered. It was sometime after the car accident. I just can't remember when."

JAYNE'S voice suddenly takes on the upper-class accent again.

JAYNE

(With more emotion)

"I remember! It was Tyler! He told me it wouldn't hurt! The liar! I'll brain him when I see him again!"

BEN

(Wryly)

"It's nothing he doesn't deserve. Anything else?"

JAYNE

"No, I don't think so."

JAYNE seems to be going over everything in her mind as she speaks. Her accent has returned to normal again, and she doesn't seem to be aware of the changes.

BEN

"Tell me about Matthew and Sandra."

JAYNE

"Matthew is the student who dreamt all this up, and Sandra's the nurse."

BEN

(Pressing)

"And what do they know?"

JAYNE stares at BEN. The upper-class accent returns when she speaks, and JAYNE now looks far more awake and aware.

JAYNE

(Suspiciously)

"Are you interrogating me, Benjamin?"

BEN

"Would you have expected anything less?"

JAYNE

"No, I suppose not."

JAYNE yawns and stretches before answering BEN'S original question.

JAYNE

"The Corporation doesn't allow small fry to know it's secrets. Matthew and Sandra both think this is a medical experiment being run by MedTec. They don't know anything about the Corporation, or the computer centre in Exchange Quay. Once they've finished, if we are feeling in a benevolent mood, both of them will be paid off and allowed to go on with their lives without ever knowing the truth."

BEN

"And if we aren't feeling benevolent?"

JAYNE stares at BEN coldly.

JAYNE

(With meaning)

"Then they'll just be paid off."

BEN

"One final question. What do you do for the Corporation, Jayne?"

JAYNE

"You know damn well what I do, Benjamin."

BEN

(Insistently)

"Yes, but do you?"

JAYNE

(Indignantly)

"Of course I do! But I'm not telling you!"

BEN

(His voice raised)

"You have to! You and I both know that you're never going to get out of here if I think your brain is even remotely fuddled! Now, give me a clue, will you? Who's your boss? What have you worked on that I know about? Tell me something, Jayne!"

JAYNE'S eyes become narrow as she stares at BEN. There is a pause, and when JAYNE answers, it is still with the familiar upper-class accent.

JAYNE

(Very icy)

"Firstly, you aren't supposed to know who my 'boss' is, Benjamin. That's standard Corporation policy. And if I thought that you did know, I'd kill you. Secondly, you wouldn't know about anything that I've worked on, so telling you wouldn't make any difference. So I'm not going to. If you've got a problem with that, you take it upstairs and see where it gets you."

BEN nods curtly and stands up. He seemed satisfied.

BEN

(Firmly)

"Good! That's exactly what I'd expect you to say. If you had said anything else, I'd have got Rawlston in here straight away to kill you! Now, I'll leave you to rest. I'll tell Sandra and Matthew they can come back in. Is there anything you want before I go?"

JAYNE holds her stomach. And when she replies, it is in broad Lancashire tones once again.

JAYNE

"Yes, I'm starved! I've got this mad craving for a pizza. You couldn't get me one, could you?"

CUT TO SCENE 30: INT. MONITORING ROOM. DAY.

JULIA enters the monitoring room to find a smiling SAM waiting for her.

SAM

(Jubilantly)

"Look at this!"

SAM turns down the sound and points at the monitor screen.

CLOSE SHOT OF THE MONITOR SCREEN SHOWING JAYNE'S ROOM.

BEN is talking with a wide awake JAYNE.

CUT TO: CLOSE SHOT OF JULIA'S FACE.

JULIA stares wide-eyed at the screen.

JULIA

(Incredulously)

"How could this happen? It's Friday today! Friday! The last day of the third week! Only one more week of tending to sleeping beauty, and then it would have been 'off with her head!'"

(Shouts as realisation dawns on her)

"You bastard, Rawlston! You tricked me!"

JULIA turns and pushes SAM against the wall of the monitoring room.

JULIA

"You knew! All along, you knew! You bastard! You out and out bastard!"

SAM starts laughing, holding his arms out wide as JULIA begins to punch him ineffectually in the chest.

SAM

"You didn't have to take the bet- oof!"

JULIA has hit SAM again, only this time it is much harder and lower. SAM quickly moves away, going behind the desk. JULIA follows him, hitting him on the back as he keeps moving. They are now behind the monitor and cannot see the screen.

CLOSE SHOT OF THE MONITOR SCREEN SHOWING JAYNE'S ROOM.

BEN and JAYNE are now deep in conversation. But with the sound turned down, JULIA'S voice drowns out what they are saying.

JULIA

"I should have known those readings were fixed! You liar!"

JULIA is chasing SAM around the desk, hitting him as she runs.

SAM

(Laughing)

"I didn't lie! You just never asked me! You knew I was taking the brain scans with Sandra, but you were so sure of yourself you never bothered to question the results!"

JULIA stops chasing SAM and shouts at him across the room.

JULIA

"But they were all negative! I know, I've seen them!"

SAM

"That's because Ben told me to hide the true results until he came back from the board meeting today! Jayne's been showing increased brain activity for days, but I always gave Sandra the false print outs, keeping the real ones for Ben!"

JULIA

(Wailing)

"That's not fair! How was I supposed to know that fucking machine produces two print outs? You cheated me! You rotter! You git! Sod! Bastard!"

JULIA steps forward, and with each verbal insult, she strikes SAM on the back, until he finally turns and grabs both her hands, pushing her down on to the chair.

SAM

"Admit it, Julia, sweetheart! It's not the bet, or the money! You're just upset that you can't slice sleeping beauty's head in half next week!"

JULIA almost vibrates in annoyance.

JULIA

"Ooohhhhhh!"

JULIA pulls her hands free, folds her arms and sits on the chair in a most unbecoming sulk.

SAM glances at the monitor screen.

SAM

"Ben's coming out. What would you like to bet that he comes straight here with the good news?"

JULIA

(Sulky)

"He'll go and see Tyler first. He's in charge now. Anyway, I'm not betting on anything with you, you cad! Taking a poor innocent convent girl like me to the cleaners! I don't know how you can sleep at night!"

SAM

"Ha!"

SAM swings her chair around and leans over her, his arms hemming her in, and his hands flat on the table behind her.

SAM

(Smiling)

"You and I both know that the nearest you've come to anything religious or spiritual, is when you were shouting, 'Oh God! Oh God!' in the Henry V hotel in Paris last year!"

JULIA

(Cheekily)

"Remember that fondly do you? Maybe you would prefer me to take a penalty rather than pay up on our bet?"

SAM moves closer.

SAM

"I might be persuaded. For old time's sake, of course!"

JULIA

"Of course!"

JULIA puts her arms around SAM. They kiss and embrace. Behind them, the monitor screen is ignored.

CLOSE SHOT OF THE MONITOR SCREEN SHOWING JAYNE'S ROOM.

JAYNE is now on her own. She is sat up in bed. She glances briefly around the room, and then her gaze fixes on the camera hidden near the ceiling in the corner. As JULIA and SAM kiss and enter the first stages of love making, it is as if JAYNE is staring right at them through the screen.

CUT TO SCENE 31: INT. TYLER'S OFFICE IN THE COMPUTER CENTRE. DAY.

TYLER is at his desk when BEN enters his office. TYLER smiles and stands up to greet him.

TYLER

(Pleased with himself)

"I told you it would work!"

BEN doesn't reply. He just closes the door behind him, walks right up to TYLER, grabs him by the throat, and shoves him up against the wall, hard.

BEN

(With emotion)

"You imbecile! You absolute, brainless idiot! I didn't think to ask you when you told me what you'd done, but I didn't think you could be so damn stupid! I thought you had just added to her memories by typing them in! Like you would on a computer! Like you described for the way you changed her language memories around! But you didn't, did you? I don't know how you did it, but you used somebody! You used Connors, didn't you? Answer me, Tyler! You used Connors for the download to Jayne Middleton, didn't you?"

TYLER

(In shock)

"Yes, yes! It was Connors!"

TYLER tries to wriggle free from BEN'S grip without success.

TYLER

"There would have been far too much data to type in manually! We had to use a human source! What of it?"

BEN thumps TYLER against the wall.

BEN

(Shouting)

"What of it? I'll tell you what of it! Julia Connors is a field agent, you daft bastard!"

TYLER

(Shouting back)

"That's why I chose her! Who else would have been better as a source of information on the Corporation than one of it's field agents? Let go of me, Watkins!"

TYLER tries to break free again, but BEN tightens his grip on TYLER'S throat.

BEN

(His voice raised, but no longer shouting)

"Not 'til I get through that thick, ego enlarged skull of yours what a complete mess you've made! Don't you know what field agents do, Tyler? Have you any idea? Do you think they just steal secrets and patents from rival companies? Well, I've got news for you! They do far worse things than that! Things that people like you never get to hear about! Disgusting things! Illegal things! And I'm not just talking about wrecking financial institutions and destroying rival companies! I'm talking about de-stabilising complete countries! I'm talking about killing people! All for the benefit of the Corporation! Do you understand me? And that's why you don't want to delve into the minds of the Corporation's field agents! It's not a good idea, Tyler!

"Julia Connors and Sam Rawlston are the only two field agents that I know about working on this project! And one of them is working for Casarotto! Has to be! Unless there's a third one I don't know about! And God help us if there is! Because field agents that work for Casarotto are far worse than all the others! They're the reason why everyone says, 'Yes, Sir!' and 'No, Sir!' and 'Three bags full, Sir!' at the board meeting! And that's why Grant knew so much about the project without you or I having to tell him! And that's also why Casarotto was able to deal with the little problem of Jayne's parents before I'd even caught the plane home! Because she's already got someone working for her on the inside!

"Do you understand what all this means, Tyler? Now that you've given Jayne Middleton Julia Connors memories, if she's the one that's working for Casarotto, then it's odds on that Jayne is going to know damn well how and why her parents died! And a hell of a lot more, too! Get it now, you moron?"

BEN now lets go of TYLER, who slowly sinks down into his chair behind his desk. TYLER'S hands shake as he rubs at his face and throat.

TYLER

(Drained and in shock)

"Oh God, I didn't realise."

BEN goes to stand in the middle of the office with his back to TYLER. He stands with his head down, and his hands on his hips. He is silent as he recovers from his outburst.

TYLER is also silent. He takes deep breaths, trying to calm himself down after his ordeal.

BEN is the first to recover his composure.

BEN

(Calmly)

"I knew it. As soon as she called me Benjamin, I just knew it. How much of her memory did you transfer, Tyler?"

TYLER puts his hands on his desk to steady his nerves.

TYLER

"It was only supposed to be her recent memories. Just enough to make Jayne accept her situation when she awoke, like I told you."

BEN

(Suspicious)

"Supposed to be?"

BEN turns to face TYLER once more.

BEN

"What do you mean, 'supposed to be'?"

TYLER

(Blustering)

"There was a discrepancy in the amount of memory space used by one of the Crays during the download, that's all. I'm sure it didn't mean anything."

BEN stares up at the ceiling and balls his fists in dismay.

BEN

(In exasperation)

"You idiot, Tyler! You've probably given Jayne everything she needs to know about the Corporation! How could you be so stupid? And so damned arrogant? You've ruined everything, and you've probably killed us both, you do know that don't you? And do you know why? Because you just got Grant to agree to an extension to the field trial! That's why Jayne Middleton's parents had to be killed in the first place! And before they're even cold, we're going to have to cut the field trial short once again! Marvellous, Tyler! Fucking marvellous!"

TYLER doesn't reply, he just sits at his desk rubbing his throat.

BEN shakes his head and sighs. He drags one of the spare chairs towards him and slumps down into it. He sits there in silence again, his head cradled in his hands.

TYLER eventually stops rubbing his throat and looks up at BEN.

TYLER

(Nervously)

"I'll talk to Grant. I'll tell him that the experiment went far more successfully than we planned. He'll accept it from me if I phrase it right, I'm sure he will."

BEN raises his head.

BEN

(Without humour)

"Yeah, and pork sausages have flying licenses."

TYLER ignores BEN'S remark.

TYLER

(Purposefully)

"We'll have to kill her."

BEN

(Sadly)

"Yes, we will. And I know just the person to do it, too."

(With heavy irony)

"This person has done everything from fixing the stock market to assassinating the CEO's of rival companies. You would be horrified and amazed at the wealth of experience this person has at doing disgusting, underhand, and criminal deeds. And the thing is, I don't even know the half of what she's done in the past. She would be perfect for the job. But there's one problem. Would you like to guess what that problem is, Tyler?"

TYLER

"I don't see why it's a problem. If Julia Connors is that good, then-"

BEN

"-Jayne Middleton will be just as good! Thanks to you and those damn computers of yours! That's the problem!"

TYLER

(In sudden excitement)

"That's it!"

TYLER stands up. Confident once more, he strides towards the door.

BEN looks at him in amazement.

TYLER

(To BEN as he passes him)

"Stop panicking, man! We both agree that the only problem we have will disappear as soon as Jayne Middleton is dead. We just have to decide which is the best way to kill her. Well, you've got Rawlston and Connors. And as you so rightly pointed out, I've got these!"

TYLER throws open the door and indicates the computers outside.

BEN stands up and stares.

BEN

(In realisation)

"Of course! The implant!"

TYLER

(Triumphantly)

"Exactly! We've already succeeded in all three of our objectives with this field trial. That's why we have our current problem with Ms Middleton. Well, what I can put in, I can take out! In fact, I can take it all out! I don't know about you, Ben, but I think it's time that we completely wiped Jayne Middleton out!"

CUT TO SCENE 32: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

When MATTHEW returns, it is to find JAYNE apparently asleep in bed.

MATTHEW'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: CLOSE SHOT OF JAYNE ASLEEP.

Unlike before, when JAYNE just lay flat on her back, she is now curled up on her side.

CLOSE SHOT OF MATTHEW'S FACE.

MATTHEW smiles.

MATTHEW sits down at his keyboard and notices the text on his VDU.

CLOSE SHOT OF THE VDU SCREEN.

(The VDU screen shows:

C:\CRAY2>DON'T STAND UP OR LOOK AT ME. JUST READ THIS.

MATTHEW instinctively looks at JAYNE.

MATTHEW'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: CLOSE SHOT OF JAYNE'S HEAD.

JAYNE still seems to be asleep. But the cable from the Crays has been re-plugged into JAYNE'S head.

MATTHEW glances back at his VDU screen. There is another message waiting for him.

CLOSE SHOT OF THE VDU SCREEN.

(The VDU screen shows:

C:\CRAY2>I TOLD YOU NOT TO LOOK AT ME, NUMBSKULL! CAN'T YOU READ ENGLISH?

MATTHEW

"Of course I can read-"

MATTHEW stops as the VDU screen goes berserk.

CLOSE SHOT OF THE VDU SCREEN.

(The VDU screen shows in sequence:

C:\CRAY2>SHUT UP YOU IDIOT!!!

C:\CRAY2>KS(*JNB&I$EWNKJWH*BFUIT****!!

Bad command or file name

C:\CRAY2>AAAAAGGGGHHHH**!!

Bad command or file name

C:\CRAY2>SHUT UP!!!!

C:\CRAY2>DON'T TALK!!!!

C:\CRAY2>TYPE!

C:\CRAY2>TYPE!)

MATTHEW types on his keyboard.

MATTHEW'S POINT OF VIEW - CUT TO: THE VDU SCREEN.

(The VDU screen shows in sequence:

C:\MINNIE\WINDOWS>Alright, alright. I'm typing. What's going on?

C:\CRAY2>A HELL OF A LOT MORE THAN BEN WATKINS IS TELLING YOU. FOR A START, THIS ROOM HAS A HIDDEN CAMERA AND MICROPHONE. BUT SO LONG AS YOU STAY WHERE YOU ARE, THEY CAN'T READ WHAT'S ON THE SCREEN. SO DON'T MOVE. AND FOR HEAVEN'S SAKE, DON'T SAY ANYTHING!

C:\MINNIE\WINDOWS>What do you want me to do?

C:\CRAY2>PRETEND THAT YOU ARE WORKING AND READ THIS. I'VE GOT A LOT TO TELL YOU, AND I DON'T THINK THERE'S MUCH TIME. THEY'RE GOING TO KILL ME, MATTHEW. AND ONCE YOU KNOW WHAT I KNOW, THEY'LL HAVE TO KILL YOU, TOO.

CUT TO SCENE 33: INT. COMPUTER CENTRE. DAY.

TYLER is sat at the main console. TECHNICIAN #1 is sitting next to him. BEN is standing behind them, staring at the monitor screen over their shoulders.

TYLER

(Lecturing)

"It's all very simple now that we have the programs all sorted out. We just tell the computer what we want, and it does it all in a matter of seconds. It took a little longer when we drew the information out of Connors, but that was because we were only copying it, and we had to contend with a very poor connection. Working with the implant is much quicker, and far more accurate."

BEN

(Unimpressed)

"So long as it works."

TYLER

"It will work. I'll stake my life on it."

BEN

(Coldly)

"You have."

TYLER looks round at him.

TYLER

"You have never been confident in my abilities have you, Watkins?"

BEN

"And you've been far too over confident. That's why we are in this mess in the first place."

TYLER

"Everything I have attempted has worked perfectly-"

BEN

(Derisively)

"Yeah, yeah! You're a genius, Glen! Just get on with it! And remember, you're not just copying data now, this time we have to do a complete memory dump. I want the lot in the trash-can. We can worry about what we put back in later."

TYLER sighs and turns back to his keyboard.

TYLER

(To TECHNICIAN #1 next to him)

"Engage the link to the implant."

TECHNICIAN #1 flicks a few switches.

TECHNICIAN #1

"The connection's made, sir. The implant is responding."

TYLER

"Good. Let's get to it."

TYLER flexes his fingers and begins to type.

CUT TO SCENE 34: VIRTUAL REALITY. INSIDE JAYNE'S MIND.

A whirlpool appears in JAYNE'S mind. JULIA'S image appears, screams, and begins to distort. It is as if she is being sucked down a drain at the centre of the whirlpool.

JULIA'S VOICE

(Distorted and in terror)

"They're taking me back! Help me! Help me! Don't let go!"

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Determined)

"I won't let go! I won't!"

The whirlpool begins to distort and lose it's shape.

JAYNE'S VOICE

(Urgently)

"Now, Matthew! Now!"

CUT TO SCENE 35: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

MATTHEW is still sitting at his keyboard and Jayne is still apparently asleep in bed.

CLOSE SHOT OF THE VDU SCREEN.

(The VDU screen shows:

C:\CRAY2>NOW, MATTHEW! NOW!

MATTHEW types furiously. He is also talking to himself.

MATTHEW

(Muttering bitterly)

"Got three Crays, have you? Well, I've got two, and I've got Jayne! And she's worth two more Crays any time! I suppose you think you're clever, Ben! Taking me for a dope all this time. Well, you're not going to get away with it! And Tyler isn't as smart as he thinks he is, either. Trying a full download through the implant while Jayne is awake will never work! You would need an implant the size of a brick to achieve that! But if you really want data, well you can have data! Chew on this, guys!"

CLOSE SHOT OF THE VDU SCREEN.

(The VDU screen shows in sequence:

C:\MINNIE\WINDOWS>run DUMP

DUMP RUNNING

CRAY 1 = 93%

CRAY 2 = 100%

The percentage level for Cray 1 begins to decrease rapidly.)

CUT TO SCENE 36: INT. COMPUTER CENTRE. DAY.

TYLER is still sitting at the main console with TECHNICIAN #1. BEN is still behind them, staring at the monitor screen over their shoulders.

TECHNICIAN #1 begins to get agitated.

TECHNICIAN #1

(To TYLER)

"Sir, one of the Crays has already reached maximum memory space."

TYLER looks over his shoulder at BEN.

TYLER

(Delighted)

"You see! The data's coming through already! First Connors memories, then Middleton's. We will have it all in no time!"

TECHNICIAN #1 looks even more anxious.

Nearby, a line printer is spewing out reams and reams of paper. Another technician rips a large chunk of the paper from the printer and brings it to TECHNICIAN #1.

TECHNICIAN #1 glances at it worriedly then pulls at TYLER'S sleeve. He holds up the paper for TYLER to see.

TECHNICIAN #1

(Urgently)

"But, sir! Look at the print outs! According to these, we were less than halfway through the program's cycle when it happened. And now the data is already beginning to fill the next Cray!"

TYLER begins to look more concerned. That gets BEN worried.

BEN

"What's going on, Tyler?"

TYLER

(Staring at the print-outs)

"It's nothing, it's nothing. This happened before. I'm sure it's nothing to worry about."

BEN

(Insistent)

"Don't tell me this is nothing! What's gone wrong?"

TYLER

(Annoyed and flustered)

"Nothing's gone wrong! Why do you always think something's gone wrong? We've never done a complete memory dump before! There's bound to be a lot of data!"

BEN

"Then why are you sweating?"

TECHNICIAN #1

(To TYLER)

"It's filling the third Cray, sir!"

BEN

(Forcefully)

"What happens if we run out of memory space? Tell me, Tyler! What's the worse case scenario?"

TYLER

(Blustering)

"Er, it'll either stop, or it will corrupt the mainframe IBM. But I'm sure it will stop."

BEN

(Pressing)

"But what happens if it doesn't? What happens then?"

TYLER

"We'll lose all the information on Hall's project that we've gathered so far."

BEN

(To TECHNICIAN #1 without hesitation)

"Disengage the link! Now!"

TECHNICIAN #1 snatches at the switches in front of him.

TECHNICIAN #1

(In much too loud a voice)

"The connection's broken!"

(Muttering under his breath)

"Shit...."

TYLER sits in a stupor as he stares at the print-outs. BEN nudges him roughly in the back.

BEN

"Find out what the damage is."

TYLER drops the print-outs and turns to his keyboard. His hands shake as he types away.

TYLER

(Confused and muttering)

"This shouldn't have happened. But the print-outs don't lie. They document the memory loading for each of the Crays, and according to them, all three Crays are now full. This is all wrong...."

BEN

(Derisively)

"I thought you said nothing had gone wrong."

TYLER

(Pointing at the screen)

"No, I mean this is wrong. It's the data that we retrieved that's wrong, not how we did it. It's not the contents of Jayne Middleton's memory at all. I recognise part of the pattern. It's been duplicated several times, but it's definitely the map of her neural net."

BEN

(In anger and realisation)

"Matthew Hall! Jayne must have told him everything!"

BEN turns and walks purposely back towards TYLER'S office.

TYLER stands up and follows him. He is beginning to recover his composure once more.

TYLER

"What are you going to do?"

BEN

(Menacingly)

"I'm going to do what we should have done in the first place. You've had your chance. Now it's my turn."

CUT TO SCENE 37: INT. JAYNE'S ROOM. DAY.

MATTHEW disconnects his lap-top from the mini-computer, stuffs it into his tool-case, and throws back the sheet that covers up JAYNE.

MATTHEW

"Now!"

JAYNE immediately springs from the bed. She is only wearing a hospital gown. She is still dazed and weak, and very wobbly on her feet. She nearly falls but MATTHEW grabs her around the waist and runs with her to the door.

CUT TO SCENE 38: INT. CORRIDOR. DAY.

MATTHEW and JAYNE emerge from JAYNE'S ROOM. MATTHEW is supporting her around the waist. As soon as they are outside, JAYNE points down the corridor, and when she speaks, it is with a Lancashire accent.

JAYNE

"This way! This way!"

MATTHEW doesn't question JAYNE'S knowledge, he just runs, pulling JAYNE along with him.

JAYNE knows exactly where they are going. As they run along together, she keeps telling MATTHEW which corridor to take, and which door to go through.

They reach a fire door.

JAYNE

(Breathlessly)

"This is it!"

JAYNE pushes on the fire door and they both rush out.

CUT TO SCENE 39: INT. MONITORING ROOM. DAY.

The telephone rings in the monitoring room. The room appears to be empty. There is the sound of scuffles on the floor behind the desk, then JULIA appears. She hauls herself up the desk and gets to her knees. Her nurses uniform is all disarranged, as is her hair, and she is hot and sweaty. She snatches up the phone just before the third ring.

JULIA

(Breathlessly)

"Yes?"

Unseen, SAM grabs JULIA somewhere private, and she gasps and punches at him.

SAM

(From behind the desk)

"Ow!"

BEN'S voice is clearly audible on the phone.

BEN'S VOICE

"Connors, is Rawlston with you?"

JULIA

(Mischievously)

"You could say so, yes."

JULIA stands up, deliberately stepping on the unseen SAM, and smiling when she hears him groan.

JULIA

(Smiling)

"Do you want to talk to him?"

BEN'S VOICE

(Harsh and deliberate)

"No. Just pass on this message: The field trial is terminated. And that goes for all the personnel associated with it. You got that, Julia, darling? Terminated with extreme prejudice, I think is the correct term. Or, put more simply, get in there and kill them. Kill them all, now!"

The line goes dead.

JULIA stops smiling and slams the phone down. She grabs the monitor, turning it to so that she can see the screen.

CLOSE SHOT OF THE MONITOR SCREEN SHOWING JAYNE'S ROOM.

The room is empty.

JULIA

(In panic)

"Oh, shit!"

JULIA runs to a cupboard at the side of the room and begins to fumble in her pocket for the key that will unlock it.

SAM now comes into view as he climbs to his feet. He is still pulling his trousers up, and his shirt is still unbuttoned.

SAM

(Unsure)

"Did I hear Ben say that the field trial was terminated?"

JULIA unlocks and opens the door to the cupboard. The cupboard is full of guns.

JULIA

"Yes! And guess who's flown the coup while you and I were playing hide the sausage!"

SAM glances at the monitor and finishes dressing more quickly.

SAM

"Shit!"

JULIA

"Exactly! Now guess who'll be in it up to their pretty necks if either one of them gets out of the building!"

JULIA takes a large automatic from the cupboard, stuffs a loaded clip into it, and quickly hides it inside her still unbuttoned uniform.

As JULIA heads for the door, SAM throws his jacket on, takes another automatic from the cupboard and hurries after her.

CUT TO SCENE 40: INT. CORRIDOR. DAY.

JULIA and SAM emerge from the monitoring room. SAM pauses in the corridor to lock the door behind them. JULIA is already hurrying away.

SAM

(Urgently)

"Wait!"

JULIA stops and turns.

SAM

"Sandra will have finished her shift by now. No one will have paid any attention to her, so she could already be outside."

JULIA

"Okay. I'll get her! You find the others! And remember, you owe me two months pay!"

SAM

"What?"

JULIA

"One for the bet I won, and one for the sexual favours you got in there!"

SAM

(In exasperation)

"Okay, okay! Just get Sandra, will you! She usually catches the Metro on Trafford Road."

JULIA grins and nods. She goes down the corridor in one direction, while SAM goes in the other.

SAM holds his gun ready, but hidden under his jacket as he hurries towards MATTHEW'S lab. It proves to be unnecessary, as there is no one else in the corridor. It is now five-thirty, and most, if not all, of MedTec's legitimate employees have already left.

SAM reaches the door marked 'Mat's Den'. As he grabs the door handle, the security alarm goes off.

CUT TO SCENE 41: EXT. CAR PARK. DAY.

MATTHEW and JAYNE are running from the fire escape. They stop in the car park. The sound of the alarm they have set off is very loud behind them.

MATTHEW

"Now where?"

JAYNE shivers as she stares at the remaining cars in the car park. She suddenly points to a white, convertible, 5 series BMW.

JAYNE

"That one!"

They run towards it. As soon as they reach it, JAYNE tears at the convertible hood. There is a broken stud, and she knows exactly where to find it. In a moment she has her hand inside, and the door is open. They both get in.

CUT TO SCENE 42: INT. JULIA'S BMW. DAY.

MATTHEW and JAYNE get into the car. MATTHEW puts his tool-case on his lap and looks round while JAYNE is rifling through the glovebox and throwing it's contents onto the floor.

CLOSE SHOT - MATTHEW'S POINT OF VIEW.

The car is very untidy. There are cassette tapes, CD's, bits of paper, maps, toffee wrappers, anything you can imagine, all littered around the car.

JAYNE

(Searching in the glovebox)

"I know it's in here somewhere! I always keep it in here! It has to be here!"

MATTHEW reaches underneath himself and pulls out a woman's high-heeled shoe. It is the left one. The right one is by his feet on the floor. He throws the one he has found after it.

JAYNE

(In triumph)

"Got it!"

JAYNE pulls out a key and stuffs it in the ignition. The engine roars, and they are off.
 
 

This is the end of the free scenes.

Copyright © D. G. Richards 2000

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