The long wait

SUBMITED TO A SHORTS COMPETITION

2017 (10 Min. Drama)

Three siblings deal with their brother’s cancer diagnosis while waiting for him to come out of surgery.

 

The long wait

 

FADE IN:

 

1               INT. BEDROOM – DAY                                                                                            1

 

A very lighted room. Neat. Almost aseptic.

MICHAEL DOMINO(18) is packing his suitcase very calmly and carefully. Has a light smile on his face.

He folds his pajamas neatly inside, adds his toothbrush and his raiser.

Next to the suitcase – a number of flyers about LIFE AFTER CANCER.

He starts humming a jolly song.

His sister, NICOLE DOMINO(25), is watching him leaned against the door.

NICOLE

You ready to go, Mikey?

MICHAEL

I just need to get my Gameboy

and I’ll be done.

He passes her and goes into another room. Nicole just stays there, in the door, trying to calm herself down. He is taking the situation lightly, she isn’t.

NICOLE

You wanna drive, lil’ bro?

MICHAEL(O.O.S.)

I’d rather drive us back, if that’s

alright with you.

 

2               INT. HOSPITAL WAITING ROOM – DAY                                                         2

Typical hospital waiting room. Rigid chairs and a cofee table with old newspapers and tabloids. You can practically smell the disinfectant.

Nicole is sitting on a chair, reading a magazine just so she could calm down. It is not working. Her right foot taps the floor nervously.

VICTORIA DOMINO (29), the older sister, joins her holding two cups of coffee. She hands one to Nicole.

VICTORIA

I should’ve gotten you decaff.

NICOLE

What you should’ve gotten me was

a big piece of cake.

VICTORIA

We’ll all eat cake once he’s out of surgery.

NICOLE

He’s not allowed to eat right after.

VICTORIA

No, but we do. And I’ll get carrot

cake. You know, the kind he

doesn’t like so it’ll be easier for him.

Nicole gives Victoria an upset look.

VICTORIA

Dan’s mother was more than happy

to watch over the kids. So we can

take turns to be with Mikey.

NICOLE

You didn’t have to do that.

I know how busy you are.

Me and Ricky can handle it.

They both look at the clock, Nicole more impatient than Victoria.

Nicole picks up another magazine, looks through it fast – not reading, just trying to distract herself.

Victoria waits in the chair patiently.

RICHARD DOMINO(30), walks through the door. Sighs when he sees their faces.

RICHARD

Not done yet? What the hell are

those bloody doctors doing?

VICTORIA

It’s brain surgery, Richard.

They’re not grilling a burger.

RICHARD

Didn’t sound so different the way

they explained it the other day.

You know what? I need to get

back to my agent.

Richard storms out the door. Nicole gets back to pretending to read the magazine, her foot still tapping the floor.

Victoria looks at the clock rubbing her hands. She hears her sister’s foot tapping the floor, the rustle of the pages when Nicole goes through the now third magazine. The time passes slowly. She sighs.

Nicole gives up and throws the magazine on the table. Covers her face with her hands, breathes in slowly, exhales slowly.

VICTORIA

I’ve looked up Hollow Oaks Sanatorium.

Seems like a decent and affordable place.

NICOLE

You did not just say that.

VICTORIA

It was what the doctors recommended.

NICOLE

I don’t care what the doctors

recommended. We’re not shipping our

brother off to some cripple facility.

VICTORIA

They even have an orchestra.

Mikey could play his guit–

NICOLE

I am not doing this now. Not with you.

Nicole leaves her seat, takes up a chair away from Victoria.

The clock on the wall shows 1 PM.

LATER

The clock on the wall shows 1:30 PM.

Victoria reads a magazine calmly.

Nicole is agitated in her seat, counts sheep with her eyes closed.

NICOLE

(mumbles)

… one hundred and twenty-five…

Richard storms in the room and draws the attention of his sisters.

RICHARD

This is fucking unbelievable. I

passed on an audition for this.

Victoria wants to say something to him, but he storms out the door before she could talk.

VICTORIA

What a prick.

NICOLE

Shut up, Vicky! At least he’s not

looking up nursing homes for our brother!

Victoria opens her mouth to talk back to her sister just as the DOCTOR appears from around the corner.

The sisters stand up from their chairs, look up to the doctor holding their breath.

DOCTOR

He’s fine.

The sisters exhale relieved.

DOCTOR

He’ll be up shortly.

 

3               INT. PATIENT ROOM – DAY                                                                               3

All the Domino siblings are drinking soda through a straw, having a good time.

Michael is in the hospital bed, has a head bandage.

RICHARD

So I told my agent that I’m fine with

doing nudity as long as the broad is at least a 7.

VICTORIA

Oh, yes. Richard Domino and his standards.

RICHARD

Mickey knows what I’m talking about.

MICHAEL

(sore throat)

Ricky is a good actor. But not that good.

Michael tries to laugh but coughs instead. Nicole rushes to help. He coughs up a bit of blood, Nicole turns pale.

Victoria and Richard look worried too.

MICHAEL

Would you all relax? Bet it’s

from the intubation.

RICHARD

Thank God. For a minute there I

thought you were getting your

period out the wrong whole.

VICTORIA

(to Richard)

Oh, my God. Could you just

not be yourself today?

NICOLE

Yeah, Ricky. Be practical, like

Victoria, who already planned to

have our brother sent away to a nursing home.

MICHAEL

It’s ok, Nicky. I asked her to look it up.

NICOLE

You what!?

MICHAEL

We don’t know how I am going to

recover after the operation. What if

I can’t go alone to the toilet or something?

NICOLE

I wiped your butt as a baby, young man.

Don’t think I’m going to shy away now.

Michael smiles happy at Nicole. Nicole tries to hold back her tears.

VICTORIA

We’ll talk about the sanatorium when

and if the time comes. We are all there

to help you get better.

Richard checks his phone.

RICHARD

Sorry, my agent again.

Richard rushes through the door without saying anything else.

VICTORIA

What an insensitive prick!

MICHAEL

Just let him be. Maybe it’s about the porno.

(laughs)

I’d like to see that before I die.

NICOLE

Mikey, don’t even say that!

VICTORIA

No, no. I’ve had it with him.

 

4               EXT. HOSPITAL, SMOKING AREEA – DAY                                                    4

Richard is smoking with his back to the hospital and to the camera.

Victoria rushes out the hospital door.

VICTORIA

What the hell is wrong with you?

Richard turns around. He has been crying, wipes his tears with his handcufs.

RICHARD

What the hell is wrong with you?

VICTORIA

The hell you’re doing, Richard? Have

you been crying alone this whole time?

RICHARD

How is it that you’re not? You

just stand there, always the Ice-Queen,

looking up places where you can stick

our sick brother in?

VICTORIA

Somebody has to be the grown-up in

this family. It sure ain’t you, with

your constant running away to do

who knows what, crying alone in

the corner. And it sure ain’t Nicole.

RICHARD

Oh, ya, please tell me more, Queen

Victoria, the head of the Dominos. Tell

me more how you have been taking

care of this family. Of our entire family.

Tell me more how you’re divorced and

how your kids see you only when you

manage to get out of the courthouse.

Victoria slaps him to shut him up.

VICTORIA

You don’t get to talk to me like that,

Richard. You haven’t done one selfless

thing for this family in years. Our brother

could have died today, and you couldn’t

keep it together enough to sit with us in

that bloody chair.

RICHARD

Sit down and what? Hold hands and cry together?

VICTORIA

Just be with us, Richard. That’s all you have to do.

 

5               INT. PATIENT’S ROOM – DAY                                                                          5

Michael is writing on a piece of paper as Victoria and Richard walk back in.

NICOLE

Oh, thank God you came back. Michael

here thought now would be a good time

to write his last will. Tell him it isn’t funny.

RICHARD

I’m getting his DVDs.

(at Michael)

You know which ones I’m talking about, buddy.

The siblings stand around Michael’s bed.

VICTORIA

What am I getting?

NICOLE

Vicky!

MICHAEL

(laughs, at Victoria)

I thought I’d give you my Gameboy.

NICOLE

What? Mikey, that was mine before you took it.

MICHAEL

It’s for her kids.

NICOLE

Her kids can’t even read, Mickey.

(to Victoria)

I’m getting the Gameboy.

RICHARD

What’s still there on your list, buddy?

MICHAEL

Thought you’d like my baseball card collection.

RICHARD

Yes!

VICTORIA

(to Michael)

Hey! I was the one who gave you money

for that every week.

(to Richard)

At least half of that is mine.

RICHARD

Take that before a judge, counselor.

NICOLE

Wait. If she is getting your Gameboy

and he is getting your cards, what am

I getting? Your stinky socks?

MICHAEL

You get the Fiesta, Nicky.

NICOLE

That old thing breaks down every time

I go over fifty, Mikey. Are you pulling my leg

here, bro?

She takes his lists and reads it for herself.

NICOLE

What the hell? You actually wrote

’stinky socks’!

The other siblings start laughing.

MICHAEL

It’s ok, sis. Victoria will give you

the Gameboy when I’m gone. It’s

not like I’ll know.

A weird silence fills the room as Victoria, Richard and Nicole lose their smile. The reality is actually not as funny.

Michael takes the list back from Nicole and starts fake-writing, speaking out loud.

MICHAEL

I, Michael Domino, leave all my

earthly possessions to my dear and

caring sisters and brother. I also leave

them my hope, my optimism, my positivity,

my humor, my memories and all my love.

(looking at all three)

I know they wished I could’ve

given them more time.Thing was,

we had all the time in the world but

they decided to let themselves consumed

by the idea of a gloomy future instead of

taking advantage of the cheerful present.

NICOLE

I’m sorry, Mikey. It’s just that the moment

you got your diagnosis, it was like a

countdown began. I feel this pressure to

cherish every moment I have with you,

(to all)

every moment I have with all of you,

but somehow I just keep wasting the

seconds on nothing.

Victoria comes and pats her sister empathically on the back.

VICTORIA

I think we all feel that we are on the

clock and not sure how to act.

RICHARD

I didn’t talk to my agent. I cried, Mikey.

That’s all I have been doing.

MICHAEL

I know you are all trying your best,

in your own way, to be there for me.

But how did you recon that the lack of

cake would help the situation?

VICTORIA

(beat)

You’re right, bro. We should’ve been more

focused on what’s really important here.

NICOLE

(to Victoria and Richard)

I think they were serving carrot cake in the cafeteria.

MICHAEL

Oh, no you’re not!

RICHARD

I am quite in the mood for some carrot cake myself.

MICHAEL

This is so mean, you guys.

VICTORIA

Oh, I’m sorry. I didn’t catch that, Mikey.

One slice or two?

The siblings continue to tease each other, laughing out loud and enjoying the time together.

 

FADE OUT.

THE END

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Powered by WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: