>> / A Nightmare on Elm Street

/ A Nightmare on Elm Street

: / A Nightmare on Elm Street.

/ A Nightmare on Elm Street


NIGHTMARE MUSIC THEME begins as we FADE UP on a SERIES OF SHOTS, all CLOSE and teasing.

-- A man's FEET, in shabby work shoes, stalking through a junk bin in a dark, fire-lit, ash- dusted place. A huge BOILER ROOM is what it is, although we only glimpse it piecemeal. Then we SEE a MAN'S HAND, dirty and nail-bitten, reach INTO FRAME and pick up a piece of METAL.

-- ANOTHER ANGLE as the HAND grabs a grimey WORKGLOVE and slashes at it with a straight razor, until its fingertips are off.

-- CLOSE ON SAME HANDS dumping four fishing knives out of a filthy bag. Their blades are thin, curved, gleaming sharp.

-- MORE ANGLES, EVEN CLOSER. We can HEAR the MAN's wheezing BREATHING, but we still haven't seen his face. We never will. We just SEE more metal being assembled with crude tools, into some sort of linkage -- a splayed, spidery sort of apparatus, against a background light of FIRE, and a deep rushing of STEAM and HEAVY, DARK ENERGY.

-- And then we see this linkage attached to the glove.

-- Then the BLADES attached to all of it.

-- Then the MAN'S HAND slips into this glove-like apparatus, filling it out and transforming it into an awesome, deadly claw-hand with four razor/talons gleaming at its blackened fingertips. Suddenly the HAND arches and STRIKES FORWARD, SLASHING THROUGH a DARK CANVAS, tearing it to shreds.

1. EXT. LOS ANGELES. NIGHT. (2nd Unit) 1.


CAMERA TILTS DOWN and ZOOMS SWIFTLY into the valley's web of light.



TITLES CONTINUE as TINA GRAY, a strong girl of fifteen in a thin night shift, moves towards us down a dark concrete corridor. Her steps quicken as TITLES appear in the portion of frame she leaves free.

A subliminal COLLAGE of SOUND threads in and out of the MUSIC. Distant insane LAUGHTER. Slamming iron DOORS. A bleating animal CRY. A LAMB, white and blank-faced, skitters across her path and on into the dark. No reason why it's there.

Then another SOUND, much nearer -- the slithering SCRAPE of something like fingernails across slate. It sets our teeth on edge, twists the MUSIC, and sends TINA running.


Suddenly TINA's a tiny figure running among huge boilers steam pipes and catwalks -- a shadowed forest of iron and stone. She stops, listening intently as the SOUND of tiny hooves suddenly turns into the rattle of DISTANT RAIN.

Then she hears RIPPING FABRIC.

Someone is shouldering behind a ragged screen of dirty canvas, approaching TINA.

CLOSER ON THE CANVAS. The long curved fingerblades suddenly punch through, flashing in the firelight, and begin ripping through the thick fabric, as easily as scalpels through flesh. They make a hideous, extended RIPPING SOUND.

TINA rushes away, hands over her ears.

ANOTHER ANGLE -- as the blinded girl stumbles backwards. Then the canvas flaps free. The blades are gone. The TITLES END, and everything goes silent.

CAMERA CIRCLES until TINA's looking right into our eyes. The light from a nearby boiler pours through her thin night dress, leaving her naked and vulnerable. Then a deep, ragged VOICE whispers at her as CAMERA CLOSES IN ON HER FACE.

VOICE (O.S.) One two, Freddie's coming for you...

TINA opens her mouth to scream but only a dry, yellow dust pours out. And at that precise moment a huge shadowy MAN with a grimey red and yellow sweater and a weird hat pulled over his scarred face lunges at her. And it's his fingers that are tipped with the long blades of steel, glinting in the boney light and giving the hulk the look of an otherworldly predator.

TINA dodges away, her legs suddenly elephantine and slow. The MAN seizes the trailing hem of her nightgown and hauls her back.

The MUSIC shrieks as TINA manages to tear free -- the MAN lurches after her with a hoarse SHOUT as we --



TINA convulses in bed with a SCREAM, looking around wildly. Someone is KNOCKING on her door.

WOMAN'S VOICE (O.S.) You okay, Tina?

TINA'S MOTHER sticks her head in with a worried look. TINA sits up and blows out a breath, groggy.

TINA Just a dream, Ma... (more to herself) Damn dream, is all...

The woman, once attractive, ventures a step into the room. A MAN hovers BACKGROUND. TINA'S mother waves him away without looking, shoving a strand of bleached hair from her eyes. She appraises her daughter.

TINA'S MOTHER Some dream, judging from that.

She nods at TINA's nightshift.

TINA looks down at her nightgown, only now aware of the chill penetrating it from the room. There are four long slashes up its middle, cleanly cut as if by scalpels.

MAN (OS) (distant, annoyed) You coming back to the sack or what?

TINA'S MOTHER Hold your horses. (lower, to Tina as she stands to leave) You gotta cut your nails or stop that kind of dreaming, Tina. One or the other.

The woman shuts the door behind her. TINA looks back to her nightgown.

TINA (low) Oh, shit.

She suddenly snatches up the cross that hangs over her head, her face white as her sheet.




CHILDREN (OS) (singing) One two, Freddie's coming for you... Three four better lock your door Five six grab your crucifix...


FADE UP ON SHOT OF this large highschool and its crowds of STUDENTS. FOREGROUND, TINA climbs out of a cherry-red 1959 Cadillac convertible with two other students, best friend NANCY WILSON, and Nancy's boyfriend and owner of the car, GLEN LANTZ.

FOREGROUND several GRADESCHOOLERS are playing jump-rope, and the old ditty they sing continues unbroken from TINA's bedroom.

ROPE JUMPERS Seven eight, gonna stay up late! Nine ten -- never sleep again!

7. MOVING ANGLE FAVORING NANCY. She's a pretty girl in a letter 7. sweater, with an easy, athletic stride and the look of a natural leader. GLEN, holding her hand, wears one of the school's football jerseys; a good-natured, bright kid. Tina's in mid-conversation.

TINA (referring to kids' song) That's what it reminded me of -- that old jump rope song. (shudders) Worst nightmare I ever had. You wouldn't believe it.

Nancy nods.

NANCY Matter of fact I had a bad dream last night myself...

TINA turns to NANCY, but before either can say more, ROD LANE, a lean, Richard Gere sort in black leather and New Wave studs joins up with them and interupts.

ROD (to Tina) Had a hardon this morning when I woke up, Tina. Had your name written all over it.

Tina cracks her gum with a look of withering indifference.

TINA There's four letters in my name, Rod. How could there be room on your joint for four letters?

The guy's stopped in his tracks.

ROD Hey, up yours with a twirling lawn mower!

He cuts off across the lawn.

TINA Rod says the sweetest things.

NANCY He's nuts about you.

TINA Yeah, nuts.

TINA makes a face and rakes her fingernails across a tree as she passes.

TINA (CONTD) (yawns) Anyway, I'm too tired to worry about the creep. Couldn't get back to sleep at all. (beat) So what you dream?

NANCY Forget it, the point is, every- body has nightmares once in a while. No biggy.

GLEN Next time you have one, just tell yourself that's just all it is, right while you're having it, y'know? That's the trick. Once you do that, you wake right up. At least it works for me.

TINA looks at GLEN sharply. He kisses NANCY and darts off for class.

TINA Hey! You have a nightmare too?

But GLEN's gone.

TINA (CONTD) Maybe we're gonna have the Big Earthquake. They say things get weird just before that...

BELLS ARE RINGING, and STUDENTS crowding; TINA and NANCY are drawn into the crush.



ANGLE ON A MODEST HOME; no car, just a couple of BIKES in the drive. Every light in the house and yard is turned on. We HEAR the rock group MADNESS played at a 'No adults home' volume.


ON GLEN, dialing. Nancy and TINA are watching, giggling.

TINA I can't believe his mother let him come over here.

NANCY Right. Well, she didn't, exactly...

GLEN shoves a cassette into TINA's Ghetto Blaster.

GLEN (to TINA) See, I got this cousin who lives near the airport, that it's okay for me to stay with, right? So I found this sound effects tape at Licorice Pizza, and...

The phone is answered. GLEN jerks the tone arm off the record with a SCRUUPT!!

GLEN (CONTD) Hello, Mom? (pushes the 'play' button) Yeah, out here at Barry's.

A JET PLANE begins to make itself heard on the tape. GLEN moves the machine closer to the phone. It's a big plane -- sounds like a 747 coming in for a landing.

GLEN (CONT) Huh? Yeah, noisy as usual. Glad we don't live here -- huh? Yeah, Aunt Eunice says hello.

The Jet is SCREAMING IN now, full flaps and howling like a monstrous banshee. NANCY and TINA dissolve into muffled giggles.

GLEN (CONT) (shouting over the din) Right, right -- I'll call you in the morning! Right! Huh? Yeah, sure, I, huh?...

Suddenly the tape goes silent. GLEN blanches. Next moment another ENGINE is heard, but this one is a FORD LOTUS screaming by at 180 mph.

GLEN (CONT) (reacting to his mother's reaction) Uh... some kid's drag racing outside, I think...

The sound effect changes abruptly to a SPEEDING SEDAN -- and the ages-old SCREECH of BRAKES, last-second SCREAM and horrible COLLISION. NANCY gamely tries to find the right button to turn it off, but misses. There's a loud SCREEK of fast-forward mayhem -- Glen improvises desperately.

GLEN (CONT) Listen, Mom, I got to go -- I think there's been an accident out front -- I --

NANCY jumps back from the cassette player -- WORLD WAR II bursts out at top volume -- MACHINE GUNS, HAND GRENADES, DIVING BEARCATS and SHOUTS of charging Huns. GLEN makes a last-ditch dive and flings the cassette out of the machine.

Blessed silence at last.

GLEN (CONT) Right. I'll call the police. No, just some neighbors having a fight, I guess. I'm fine, I'm fine! Call you in the morning!

He hangs up and sags back.

NANCY Worked like a charm.

GLEN Jesus.

TINA shoves another cassette in, and MICHAEL JACKSON'S 'THRILLER' blasts from the STEREO. The kids relax, the CAMERA GLIDES PAST THEM TO THE WINDOW.

The WIND is moving the bare TREE BRANCH outside. CAMERA PANS BACK to the comfortably threadbare room, uneasy. We see NANCY poking at a flame in the hearth as TINA comes FOREGROUND to draw the drapes.

NANCY Nice to have a fire.

TINA Really. Turn 'er up a little.

NANCY turns a nearby valve handle, and the gas fire climbs brightly over its artificial log. TINA joins her, heartened.

NANCY Maybe we should call Rod, have him come over too. He might get jealous.

TINA Rod and I are done. He's too much of a maniac.

GLEN He should join the Marines, they could make something out of him. Like a hand grenade.

TINA laughs despite herself. NANCY brightens.

NANCY See? You've forgotten the bad dream. Didn't I tell you?

TINA shakes her head, wishing she had forgotten.

TINA All day long I been seeing that guy's weird face, and hearing those fingernails...

NANCY looks up with a flinch.

NANCY Fingernails? (blinks, laughing) That's amazing, you saying that. It made me remember the dream I had last night.

TINA looks up.

TINA What you dream?

NANCY I dreamed about this guy in a dirty red and yellow sweater; I dream in color, y'know; he walked into the room I was in, right, right through the wall, like it was smoke or something, and just stared at me. Sort of ...obscenely. Then he walked out through the wall on the other side. Like he'd just come to check me out...

The story has left the room deathly quiet. Especially TINA seems effected.

TINA (quietly) So what about the fingernails?

NANCY remembers, imitating the frightful coincidence.

NANCY He scraped his fingernails along things -- actually, they were more like fingerknives or something, like he'd made them himself? Anyway, they made this horrible nose -- (imitates) sssssccrrrtttt....

TINA pales.

TINA Nancy. You dreamed about the same creep I did, Nancy...

The girls stare at each other.

GLEN That's impossible.

They look at him. He looks away, as if suddenly listening.

TINA What?

GLEN Nothing.

TINA There's somebody out there, isn't there...

NANCY I didn't hear anything...

Then there's an unmistakeable SOUND. A distinct SCRAPING against the house, just outside the window. Something multiple, thin and sharp. Something like metal fingernails. NANCY's mouth opens a fraction of an inch.


CLOSE ON FRONT DOOR as a BOLT UNLOCKS, a KEY TURNS, a CHAIN is REMOVED. At last the door swings open and GLEN swaggers out.

GLEN I'm gonna punch out your ugly lights, whoever you are.

No answer but a slight RUSTLE in the bushes. GLEN does a 180 and walks right back inside. The girls prod him right back out, giddy with giggling fear.

GLEN It's just a stupid cat.

NANCY Then bring us back its tail and whiskers.

The girls push him farther. GLEN edges towards the shadows. Then the SCRITCHING again. GLEN stops; TINA edges back into the house.

TINA Anyway, I don't have a cat...

ANGLE INTO THE SHADOWS. Turned from the girls, GLEN sobers, listening. IN HIS POV we see the street. Silent houses. Motionless trees on empty lawns.

GLEN Kitty-kitty? Chow chow chow?

Not a living, or dead, soul. GLEN turns back to the girls with a shrug. Instantly, a large FIGURE pounces and throws him to the ground with a shout.

The girls SCREAM in panic and run for the house.

11. REVERSE -- ROD leaps up and shouts like a sportscaster -- 11.

ROD And it's number thirty-six, Rod Lane, bringing Lantz down just three yards from the goal with a brilliant tackle! And the fans go wild!

ROD dances into the light, flashing a wild gypsy's grin at TINA. The girl's relieved and frightened at the same time.

TINA What the hell you doing here?

ROD Came to make up, no big deal. Your ma home?

TINA Of course. What's that?

ROD takes the spindly hand rake he's found and scraps the house's wall. It makes a terrible SCRIIITCHING SOUND. He grins and tosses it aside.

ROD Intense, huh? (sizes up the three) So what's happening, an orgy or something?

GLEN Maybe a funeral, you dickhead.

ROD wheels, a knife suddenly in his hand, as if ready to take Glen's throat out. NANCY breaks between --

NANCY -- Just a sleep-over date, Rod. Just Tina and me. Glen was just leaving.

ROD eyes GLEN, laughs and flips the knife closed and away, putting his arm around TINA's shoulder and laughing as if it's all a great joke.

ROD You see his face? (lower) Your ma ain't home, is she? (to Nancy & Glen) Me and Tina got stuff to discuss.

He pulls TINA inside without further ceremony.

NANCY Rod...

But ROD's already got himself and TINA halfway through the living room, heading into the darker part of the house.

ROD We got her mother's bed. You two got the rest.


NANCY We should get her out of here...

TINA darts to the front door, her blouse half out.

TINA Hey -- you guys're hanging around -- right? (fake laughing/whine) Don't leave me alone with this lunatic -- Pleeeeze, NANCY!

She disappears. GLEN looks at NANCY. Too innocent.

GLEN So we'll guard her together. Through the night. (moving closer) In each others' arms like we always said.

NANCY Glen. Not now. I mean, we're here for Tina now, not for ourselves.

She kisses him lightly, then pushes him back.

GLEN (frustrated) Why's she so bothered by a stupid nightmare, anyway?

NANCY Because he was scary, that's why.

GLEN Who was scary?

NANCY turns and looks at him.

NANCY Don't you think it's weird, her and me dreaming about the same guy? (GLEN looks away; NANCY stares closer) You didn't have a bad dream last night, did you?

GLEN gives her a funny look.

GLEN Me? I don't dream.

He takes her inside. Over the SOUNDS of locks falling shut we



FADE UP ON an old 50's CLOCK, one of those set into the black plaster body of a stalking panther. It's just past 2 AM.

PAN the cold hearth and darkened living room to REVEAL GLEN on the couch, cacooned in sheets. He's listening miserably to the SOUNDS OF LOVEMAKING coming from the next room. TINA peaks, ROD howls. Then silence.

GLEN Morality sucks.



This is a slightly larger room than TINA's. Adult. Female. Spare in its appointments. The streetlight throws the narrow bed into broken shadow and light. TINA AND ROD lie in each other's arms in the middle of the big bed. Satiated.

TINA I knew there was sometihng about you I liked...

ROD yawns into the pillows, happy.

ROD You feel better now, right?

TINA Jungle man fix Jane.

ROD No more fights?

TINA No more fights.

ROD (sleepily) Good. No more nightmares for either of us then.

He pulls the covers over his head. He's almost out already.

TINA (beat) When did you have a nightmare?

ROD (under the blankets) Guys can have nightmares too, y'know. You ain't got a corner on the fucking market or something.

He rolls over, practically snoring, and pulls another cover over his head. A dirty red and yellow cover.

TINA (sleepily) Where'd you get this snotty old thing?

SNORES from ROD. TINA yawns, turns off the light and snuggles against ROD, pulling the cover gingerly over herself, too.


CAMERA MOVES across the room of the original nightmare to find NANCY alone in TINA's bed, staring at the slanting ceiling above the bed. Thinking. We can just hear her HEART beating. She sighs and turns on her side.

Immediately the wall above her head turns a faint reddish hue, with a broad yellow smear across its center. All unseen by NANCY, the wall begins to pulse in exact time with her heart's beat.

CLOSE ON NANCY'S FACE. She closes her eyes.

ANGLE BACK UP ON THE CEILING JUST ABOVE HER HEAD. SOMETHING presses against the surface from the inside. The plaster buldges out as if suddenly elastic, taking the shape of the thing pressing from inside -- taking the shape of a man's face. The face opens its mouth. The knives rake through the surface.

ANGLE ON NANCY -- as plaster dust snows down on her.

She jerks awake, sitting bolt upright. The face retracts suddenly -- the wall is normal.

ANGLE DOWN ON NANCY as she looks up to the ceiling, touching her hair and feeling the plaster dust.

REVERSE IN HER POV TO THE CEILING. There are three parallel cuts in the plaster there. About eight inches long. As if cut by sharp knives. Nothing else.

Back on NANCY. She draws the covers around her and shivers. Eyes wide open.


Not a car or person in sight. A stricken breeze dies in the trees.

17. ZOOM IN on the window of the room where TINA sleeps. By the time 17. we're FULL IN CLOSE on it, the air is again still as death. A moment later a PEBBLE bounces off the pane. The NIGHTMARE THEME appears in the lower registers and holds its breath.

Another PEBBLE strikes, with a sharper RAP.


CLOSE ON TINA'S FACE as her eyes open.

19. REVERSE IN HER POV. Another PEBBLE clatters off the glass. 19.

20. TINA raises slowly. 20.



PAST HER TO THE WINDOW. The WIND MOVES AGAIN; the trees brush the window with their shadows. Then another pebble. RAP! TINA slips to the window.


She looks out on an old yard with a patch of bananna trees rattling in the Santa Ana winds. It seems deserted, though the welling dark won't let her be sure. Then another pebble -- PAP!

-- hitting with a sharp RACK FOCUS.

22. A LOW ANGLE TO WINDOW as TINA jumps back, startled. She hadn't 22. seen that one coming. But she's drawn back to the glass out of curiousity, straining to see in the dark. It's as if the stones are materializing out of thin air.


WHAP! This time a heavier stone, and a thin crack bristles across the glass.

TINA (low) Who the fuck you think you are, whoever you are?



TINA (listening) Somebody there?

She can see through the backward to a yawning gate and the back alley. No one there. But a word is spoken, as if by wind.

VOICE (garbled) Tina.

TINA straightens, unable to swallow. There's a ragged, obscene GIGGLE. Deep in the throat. Phlegmy.

TINA Who the hell is that?

TINA charges across the yard and through the gate, the MUSIC chasing after.


She brakes in the middle of the alley and whirls around. Listening. Shivering in the same thin slashed nightgown.

A sharp crank of METAL, and fifty feet down the alley the lid of an ash can rolls from the dark like a huge tin coin and spirals noisily down.

26. LOW REVERSE ACROSS LID TO TINA. Despite herself she comes over 26. and touches it. She comes up with long worms on her fingers.

Next moment the exact same shambling MAN from her nightmare staggers into view fifty feet behind her. TINA falls back into the shadows, shaking the worms off her fingers in repulsion. The MAN turns and starts directly for her, something shining on his right hand as he spreads his arms wide. He starts scraping the steel FINGERNAILS along a cinderblock wall. Orange sparks spurt out -- his arms elongate until they reach from one side of the alley to the other -- and TINA is cut off from her home!

CLOSE ON HER as the SCRAPING of the blades gets louder and closer. She begins to shake uncontrollably.

TINA Oh, shit, please God...

KILLER (softly, approaching) This is God...

He holds up his steel-tipped hand like a surgical-steel spider. TINA runs for her life.

27. WIDER ANGLE IN THE ALLEY -- a terrifying, all-out footrace 27. between the girl and her pursuer. The MAN is fast; the distance between them closes with each heartbeat. TINA overturns ashcans -- claws her way through a rotten back fence, hammers against a window. Ashen FACES appear, recoil, pull curtains closed and disappear in fright.


TINA runs out onto front lawns, SCREAMING for help. No help comes. In fact, the only response is for all the porch lights on the block to be turned off. The MAN roars out from behind a tree -- a tree too narrow to have hidden him -- nearly upon the girl! TINA runs in panic -- at last making her own home, only to be trapped against its locked front door.

She hammers against its thick wood.

TINA Nancy! Open the door -- Nancy!

The MAN slows. He has TINA now and knows it.

MAN She's still awake. Nancy can't hear you.

TINA turns and looks full at the approaching MAN. Smudged by deep shadow, he's big and hideous. He wears the same dirty yellow sweater from the first nightmare -- from the wall-hanging and blanket too -- and has the same sagging hat and leering grin over his misshapen face. And on his fingers are the steel talons.

29. CLOSE ON HIM as he takes the blade on the end of his right index 29. finger and lopes off one of the fingers of his left hand. Then another. We SEE the PIECES OF FINGERS fall past TINA'S face in SLOW MOTION.

ANGLE ON THE GROUND of the FINGERS squirming on the ground, one flopping onto TINA's naked foot.

TINA leaps back, sickened, and begins stamping on then as if they were huge bugs.

The MAN snaps up his arm and the FINGERS fly back into place on his hand. He leers at TINA -- then suddenly lunges at her, sweeping with his cutting hand!

TINA's no weak sister -- blocks his arm, deflecting the spines, and grabs the MAN's ugly face with her other hand. But the face only slides off to the bone. The MAN presses in, and TINA contorts in horror as the knives slash across her shoulder -- cutting her deeply.

29A. TINA staggers backward, GROANING, her foot now inexplicably 29A. caught in bedclothes! She falls over her bed's conformter, twists away from the man and, like a child, pulls the cover over her! The skull-faced MAN crushes down, and there's a fierce grappling -- punctuated by his GRUNTS and the girl's DEAFENING SCREAMS -- and they both become totally wrapped in the comforter -- until they're beneath it, fighting for life and death.


ROD lurches up into CLOSE UP in the lightless bedroom, half-awakened by the tremendous struggle somewhere, somehow inside the dark bed. ROD grabs groggily, lifting the blanket.

30A. IN HIS POV we glimpse the dark underside of the blanket -- see 30A. TWO SHADOWY FIGURES flailing and clawing under the bedspread -- TINA and the MAN -- or a shape that could be a man -- raging against each other.

ROD drops the blanket and leaps from the bed, scared full awake and terrified. Then the horrible TINA's GASPS change to the CRIES of a terribly wounded victim. ROD instantly jerks back the bedspread.

IN HIS POV we SEE TINA struggling and flailing along on the sheets, the MAN nowhere in sight.

ROD T-tina!?

Suddenly TINA -- eyes turned inward to her tormentor -- give an awful jolt -- her arms and legs are spraddled as if by overwhelming force and pinned to the bed. Next instant, her nightgown flies apart and four long gashes chase across her torso. From no visible instruments! A huge irrigation of blood floods the bed.

Terrified, ROD dives for the light -- but at the same moment something invisible grabs TINA, wielding her body in the air and bringing it around in a swift blow that knocks ROD crashing into the light -- smashing it to bits.

31. CLOSER ON HIM as he struggles around. In the blue FLASHES OF 31. ELECTRICITY ROD sees TINA sliding up the bedroom wall in a dark smear, dragged feet first!

ANGLE ON ROD -- paralized by terror!

ANGLE ON TINA'S DYING EYES -- moving with her up the wall and bumping around the corner onto the ceiling. She's just looking at who's dragging her, eyes glazing.

REVERSE IN HER POV -- to the shadowy, horrendously ugly MAN, dragging her with fierce glee across the ceiling, literally swabbing the ceiling with her bloody body. SEEN in FORCED PERSPECTIVE, the SHOT carries her across a great distance without seeming to get anywhere -- as if the ceiling is an endless plane.

ANGLE DOWN ON ROD -- on his hands and knees -- the lamp next to him blurting blue SPARKS and STROBING the nightmare room. ROD'S screaming up at TINA'S invisible tormentor.

ROD What the hell's going ON here! Tina!

ANGLE ON TINA -- upside down, clawing at the hanging swag lamp above her mother's dressing table -- desperate for some anchor. But she's dragged away from it. The lamp swings back, it's wires gushing more SPARKS.

CLOSER along the ceiling as TINA rakes a long furrow in the ceiling with her fingernails. But her eyes are glazing, glazing. And then they fall closed.

WIDE, UP ON THE CEILING, as her body suddenly flops loose, hanging for an awful moment by the feet over the bed.

REVERSE ON ROD -- staring like a terrified child.

ROD Tina --

REVERSE IN HIS POV -- as the body falls like a sack of rocks onto the devastated bed, in SLOW MOTION, striking with a huge splash of blood. A sick, awful GIGGLE floats around the room, then ECHOES off into infinity. ROD staggers up, staring around as if hoping to see this phantom.

ROD You motherfucker! I'll kill you for that!


NANCY is sitting straight up in bed, terrified. The CRIES of ROD are ringing through the whole house. She forces herself to move -- bolting from the bed despite her terror and sense of dread.


NANCY flies into the dark hall -- crashing directly into SOMEONE who lurches out of the dark before her. She SCREAMS and jumps back --

GLEN What the hell's going on!?

NANCY Oh -- jeez -- Glen! Rod's gone ape!

ROD (OS) (sobbing) I'll kill you!

NANCY grabs the door; it's locked; she pounds on it. BAM! BAM! BAM!

Things fall into sudden, awful silence on the other side. GLEN's voice cracks with fear.

GLEN Rod? (silence) Rod, you better not hurt Tina...

ROD erupts into terrible HOARSE LAUGHTER AND SOBBING. Then they hear BREAKING GLASS.

GLEN barrels into the door like the football player he is. The frame splinters and they're in.


Just inside the door NANCY slips and goes down hard. GLEN finds her in the dark more by touch than sight.

GLEN You okay?

NANCY Yeah. Something slippering all over here... (feeling) Tina?

No answer. The room is quiet as a tomb. Except for a stead DRIPPING, from all over. Then GLEN finds a LIGHT SWITCH.

On the CLICK the devastation is revealed. There's BLOOD everywhere: up the walls, over the clawed ceiling, soaking the killing floor of the bed, and pooling in the dark red puddle where NANCY has slipped and fallen.

GLEN Oh, shit...

NANCY wobbles up and sees TINA in the center of the ravaged bed. Unmistakeably and utterly dead. NANCY presses against the wall, then contorts and chokes.

GLEN (CONTD) (numb) I...I'm gonna call the cops --

He bursts from the room.

35. TIGHT ON NANCY. She turns away from the body in repulsion, 35. sticking her head through the shattered window ROD LANE used for his escape, sucking in the cold night air and moaning.



FADE UP ON RED LIGHTS and SIREN as an unmarked POLICE CAR speeds to the curb.

LT DON THOMPSON, a decent-looking man in his mid-40's, exits and punches a cigarette from his pack. His shaken aide, a uniformed patrolman named PARKER, greets him. (CAMERA FOLLOWS them from the car straight into the station and eventually to THOMPSON'S OFFICE.)

PARKER Lieutenant Thompson. Sorry to wake you, but --

LT THOMPSON I'd've canned your ass if you hadn't. What you got?

PARKER stumbles to open the door for THOMPSON as the man bulls into the station at a furious pace.

PARKER Her name was Tina Gray. It was her home. Father abandoned ten years ago, mother's in Vegas with a boyfriend. We're trying to reach her now.

LT THOMPSON grimaces as if he knows the story.

LT THOMPSON What's the Coroner got to say?

PARKER Something like a razor was the weapon, but nothing found on the scene.

THOMPSON is already to the desk officer SERGEANT GARCIA. The big MAN shoves him a sheaf of papers --

SERGEANT GARCIA (wary) Leautenant. You know who --

LT THOMPSON Where is she?

SERGEANT GARCIA I put her in your office...

PARKER scurries after.

PARKER Looks like her boyfriend did it. Rod Lane. Musician type, arrests for brawling, dope --

LT THOMPSON Terrific. What the hell was she doing there?

PARKER She lived there.

LT THOMPSON OMIT 37. I don't mean her -- OMIT 37.


THOMPSON enters his office and confronts NANCY and her mother, MARGE SIMSON.

LT THOMPSON (CONTD) I mean you. (accusingly, to Marge) What the hell was she doing there?

MARGE SIMSON is in her middle thirties; a good-looking woman despite the hour and circumstances.

MARGE Hello to you, too, Donald.

THOMPSON stops, the steam suddenly out of him. The girl is a wreck and he winces to see it.


THOMPSON glances at PARKER and the other UNIFORMED COPS who are in the room. As a man they head for the door. There's no question who the boss is here. THOMPSON turns to NANCY. She fumbles a smile.

LT THOMPSON (CONTD) How you doing, pal?

NANCY Okay. Hi, dad.

NANCY's dress is dark with dried blood, her skin clammy and the color of paste. MARGE shoots her ex-husband a worried glance. THOMPSON pulls a chair close to NANCY.

LT THOMPSON I don't want to get into this now, god knows you need time. (hotter) But I'd sure would like to know what the hell you were doing shacked up with three other kids in the middle of the night -- especially a delinquent lunatic like Lane.

NANCY weaves.

NANCY Rod's not a lunatic.

LT THOMPSON You got a sane explanation for what he did?

The girl is shredding a Kleenex, staring off.

MARGE Apparantly he was crazy jealous. Nancy said they'd had a fight, Rod and Tina.

NANCY (quietly) It wasn't that serious...

MARGE Maybe you don't think murder's serious --

NANCY sits bolt upright in her chair, her eyes flashing.

NANCY She was my best friend! Don't you dare say I don't take her death seriously! (lower, near tears) I just meant their fights weren't that serious.

The girl holds the woman's eyes a moment, then looks away.

NANCY (CONTD) (to herself) She dreamed this would happen...


NANCY She had a nightmare about somebody trying to kill her, last night. That's why we were there; she was afraid to sleep alone.

A tear splashes off the arm of her chair.

MARGE She's been through enough for one night. You have her statement.

The mother and daughter rise; THOMPSON raps on the door and PARKER opens it.

LT THOMPSON (to MARGE) I suggest you keep a little better track on her -- she's still a kid, y'know.

MARGE wheels on him.

MARGE You think I knew there were boys there!? You try raising a teenager alone.

Then she and the girl are gone. THOMPSON glares at PARKER.

LT THOMPSON (low to PARKER) See they get home okay.

PARKER shoves his hands in his pockets. ON HIS FACE we





FADE UP ON MARGE SIMSON opening a new bottle of gin, pouring herself a careful shot, drinking it, then chasing it with coffee. Nearby a TV drones the morning news. We can't yet see the SCREEN.

TV NEWSCASTER (OS/FILTER) In the headlines this morning -- a local teenage girl was brutally murdered during an all-night party.

MARGE TURNS, startled, seeing NANCY coming downstairs.

The girl looks a little better than she did in the Police Station, but her eyes are still red-rimmed, and a vacant stress masks her face. She looks to the TV. Stops.

TV NEWSCASTER (CONTD) Police say the victim, fifteen-year -old Christina Grey, had quarrelled earlier with her boyfriend, Rod Lane, a punk rocker with a history of delinquency. Lane is now the subject of a city-wide manhunt. According to --

39A. The TV PICTURE has begun featuring a HANDHELD NEWSREEL SHOT of a dark rubber BODY BAG being carried to a CORONER'S VAN. Just before the thing is lifted inside, TINA'S bloodied, white ARM slips from its zippered side and lolls into the dark night air. A man rudely shoves it back inside and pulls the zipper up the rest of the way.

39B. WIDER -- as NANCY pales visible. MARGE darts to the TV and slaps it off, then turning to NANCY. She looks at the girl a moment, then goes to her and hugs her.

MARGE (kind) Where you think you're going?

NANCY School.

MARGE I could hear you tossing and turning all night, kiddo. You've no business going to school.

NANCY pulls away, determined.

NANCY I gotta go to school, Mom. Please. Otherwise I'll just sit up there and go crazy or something.

MARGE studies her face a moment.

MARGE Did you sleep?

NANCY I'll sleep in study hall, promise. I'd rather keep busy, you know?

She absently drains the woman's coffee cup -- then pecks her cheek.

MARGE Right home after.

NANCY (cont'd) Right home after. See you.

MARGE watches the girl disappear outside, then lights a cigarette from the one already burning in her fingers.

40. EXT. STREET. DAY. 40.

MUSIC slips back in, subtle but tense as we TRACK with NANCY as she walks alone down a sidewalk edged with thick flowering Oleander. She cocks her head, puzzled, as if sensing something. MUSIC mounts. NANCY looks across the street.

40A. REVERSE IN HER POV. A MAN is over there in dark clothes, reading 40A. a newspaper, but really watching her.

40B. NANCY shrugs and continues on, then stops and looks back again. 40B.

40C. IN HER POV we SEE the MAN is gone. 40C.

40D. Next moment -- with a MUSIC STING -- a BLOODIED HAND jumps out 40D. from the opposite direction, clamps over NANCY'S mouth and drags her into the bushes.

41. EXT. BUSHES. DAY. 41.

NANCY struggles, twisting against the powerful assailant.

A WIDER ANGLE REVEALS ROD LANE -- barefoot, clad only in jeans and leather jacket, still caked with dark blood. The rest of his skin is pale as a ghost's.

ROD I'm not gonna hurt you.

He releases her warily. NANCY makes no move to run or scream, even though several STUDENTS pass on the nearby sidewalk. This reassures ROD just a little.

ROD Your old man thinks I did it, don't he?

NANCY He doesn't know you. (eyeing the blood) Couldn't you change?

ROD The cops were all over my house. (shivers) They'll kill me for sure.

NANCY Nobody's gonna kill you.

He runs his hands down his face, trying to believe that. The two study each other.

ROD I never touched her.

NANCY You were screaming like crazy.

NANCY says this without accusation, just cool observation.

ROD Someone else was there.

NANCY The door was locked from your side.

ROD grabs her hard. His muscular body tenses.

ROD Don't look at me like I'm some kind of fucking fruitcake or something, I'm warning you.

VOICE (O.S.) Morning, Mr. Lane.

42. The boy jerks around. NANCY's father, his .38 leveled right at 42. ROD's belly, eases out of the bushes.

LT THOMPSON Now just step away from her, son. Like your ass depended on it. I'm warning you.

ROD backs away, looking once at NANCY with a look of terrible sadness. Then he dives out of the bushes and runs like hell.

THOMPSON snaps his revolver to fire -- but instinctively NANCY jumps between --


THOMPSON jerks his gun into the air, furious.

THOMPSON Jesus -- are you crazy!?

He plunges past the girl.


ROD races like a frightened animal across the lawns -- but is soon cut off by the PLANECLOTHESMAN NANCY saw watching her before -- and then TWO UNIFORMED POLICEMAN, who close from another angle. The chase is short and pitifully off-balance, and ROD is soon wrestled to the ground. Next moment one of the cops is holding ROD'S knife into the air for THOMPSON to see. THOMPSON looks at NANCY, as if to say 'I told you.' Background, ROD'S SHOUTS can be heard as he's shoved into a SQUAD CAR.

ROD (O.S.) I didn't do it -- ! (fading) I didn't kill her, Nancy!

The car's door slams and ROD is gone. NANCY turns to her father, livid.

NANCY You used me, daddy!

LT THOMPSON (exasperated) What the hell you doing going to school today, anyway -- your mother told me you didn't even sleep last night!

NANCY spins angrily and walks away.


But she just keeps going.



FADE UP ON an ENGLISH TEACHER and CLASS, NANCY among the kids, trying to concentrate.

TEACHER According to Shakespeare, there was something operating in Nature, perhaps inside human nature itself, that was rotten -- a canker, as he put it.

The TEACHER'S eyes glance across the room. ANGLE ON NANCY; yawning but listening.

TEACHER (CONTD) Of course Hamlet's response to this, and to his mother's lies, was to continually probe and dig -- just like the gravediggers -- always trying to get beneath the surface. The same was true in a different way in Julius Caesar. Jon, go ahead...

She nods to a SURFER who's been waiting uncomfortably in front of the class. He squints at his book and begins, the recitation a struggle between baked and salted brain and the poetry of the Bard.

SURFER (reading aloud) Uh, In the most high and palmy state of Rome...

WISEGUY STUDENT (O.S.) California's the most high and palmy state, man.

The SURFER halts with a grin; KIDS snicker.


She glares them back into silence. The SURFER starts over, as we CUT TO NANCY.

She's nodding off now, barely able to keep her eyes open in the warm, close boredom of the classroom.

SURFER (O.S.) In the most high and palmy state of Rome, a little ere the mightiest Julius fell... (NANCY's head pitches forward; she jerks it back up, barely awake) The graves stood tenantless, and the sheeted dead did squeak and gibber in the Roman street...

44. NANCY's head has sunk again, eyelids drawn as if by enormous 44. weight. By the time her cheek's against the desk, the SURFER'S VOICE is ECHOED and DISTANT. But another voice, TINA'S, is very near, very much present. A sad, thin plaint.

TINA (O.S.) Nancy.

NANCY gives a start. Her eyes lock onto something.

45. REVERSE. TILTED SIDEWAYS, IN HER HEAD'S POV, we look straight 45. out through the open doorway of the classroom into the hall. There, standing in a black pool of fluid, is a full-sized rubber body bag. Dark red and yellow. Weaving slightly, the merest suggesting of movement within it.

46. BACK ON NANCY, sitting upright, wiping the sleep from her eyes, 46. shaking her head like a punchy prozefighter. She looks back out the door.

47. REVERSE IN 'NORMAL' POV -- the hallway is empty. But there's a 47. dark smear on its floor tiles.

48. NANCY looks nervously towards the rest of the class. No one else 48. has noticed a thing outside the door. All are dumbly spellbound by the SURFER, who now recites like a deep-voiced robot, his face wreathed by white hair.

SURFER O God, I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams...

49. ANGLE BACK ON NANCY. She slips from her seat, eye warily on the 49. teacher and class. But no one turns as she disappears through the doorway.


NANCY turns and looks both directions. No sign of anybody.

TINA (O.S.) (distant) Nancy.

NANCY wheels and sees the bag, prone on the tiles at the far end of the hall, at the end of a long snail's trail of slime. A pale hand thrusts out of it. A moment later, as if pulled by invisible gravity, the bag slides out of sight into an intersecting corridor.


NANCY starts running for it.

51. ANGLE AT THE CORNER as NANCY races blindly around the turn and 51. smashes straight into a BODY lunging at her from the opposite direction! Both go down.

52. ANGLE AT THE FLOOR. A dazed freshman HALLGUARD cranks herself up 52. on one elbow. She wears a plastic plaque on her red and yellow sweater that reads 'Hall Guard'. Her nose is bleeding from the impact.

HALLGUARD Y-you're not supposed to run. W-where's your pass -- you got a pass?

NANCY leaps up --

NANCY Screw your stupid pass!

53. She turns -- sees the body bag halfway down this darker, narrower 53. hall, upright again. But just as she sees it, it tips and pitches headlong through a doorway -- like some godawful rotten tree finally timbering down. She can hear the sickening CRUNCHING of it falling down a long flight of stairs.

NANCY runs for it again. The HALLGUARD staggers up FOREGROUND, bleeding profusely from her eyes and ears.

HALLGUARD Hey, no running in the halls!

The HALLGUARD raises her hand and we see it's tipped with long metal spikes.

REVERSE ANGLE AT THE DOOR as NANCY runs up. NANCY turns to check out the HALLGUARD. She's vanished. NANCY turns and looks down through the open door. The MUSIC sweeps through a strange, brooding movement of strings, mounting towards the NIGHTMARE THEME.


NANCY edges into the stairwell and looks down. Looks like there's a fire somewhere down there, from the way the orange light dances. But there's only a low WHITE NOISE.


No answer. NANCY starts down the stairs.


NANCY comes off the stairs into a dank boiler room. The smear trail is there. It runs behind a cracking, red-hot boiler the size of a diesel locomotive. Everything about the place feels dreadfully wrong, and the MUSIC is deep into the NIGHTMARE THEME when it pauses.

TIGHT ON NANCY. Slow terror moves into her face. There's a low, sinister GIGGLE.

56. REVERSE IN HER POV -- we see a tangle of pipes, shadows, and the 56. tainted fire of the huge boiler. Then from behind this, deeply shadowed but still identifiable, steps TINA's KILLER. The same filthy red and yellow sweater and slouch hat, the same melted face twisting into a smile, the same GARBLED LAUGH as he slides the long blades from beneath his shirt and fans them on the ends of his bony fingers.

NANCY Who are you?

MAN Gonna get you.

57. The leering MAN brings the bloodied scalpel-fingernails across 57. his own chest, splitting a nipple. Yellow fluid pours out. MAGGOTS and WORMS.

NANCY forgets the question -- jerks around and flees in blind panic into the first opening she sees -- a dark pipe tunnel.


ANGLE IN THE NARROW PASSAGEWAY. In the BACKGROUND the killer shambles towards her; FOREGROUND NANCY breaks into a run.

The killer sprints -- NANCY tears ahead into darkness.

She flees deeper and deeper into the labyrinth of steaming, SIZZLING pipes, squeezing through smaller and smaller openings. The killer is just yards behind her, and soon she's trapped, just as TINA was before her.

She presses her back to the wet bricks. There's no hope of fighting him off, for NANCY is not as strong as TINA. But she is smart as hell, and thinking even in this nightmare. So by the time the creep has raised his knives to strike, NANCY has realized something. She wheels and shoves her arm against one of the scalding steam pipes. In the sme split second we HEAR her flesh scald, we



NANCY lurches up SCREAMING, arm raised to ward off the invisible blow, books clattering to the floor -- other GIRLS nearby SCREAM in surprise as she stumbles over them. Then she stops, confused and groggy from the nightmare.

WIDER ANGLE. EVERYBODY is staring at NANCY as if she's gone mad. The ENGLISH TEACHER rushes over, herself frightened by the terror in the girl's eyes.

TEACHER Okay -- Okay, Thompson! Every- thing's all right now -- Nancy!.

60. NANCY jerks around with panicked eyes, expecting the killer to 60. leap from any direction. But there's only the sea of staring eyes.

NANCY begins methodically picking up her books.

TEACHER I'll call your mother.

NANCY No! No, really, I'm fine. I'll go straight home. I'm okay.

She marches for the door.

TEACHER You'll need a hall pass!

But the girl's gone.


NANCY walks out of the building, shaken. Then she pauses at one of the big pine trees out front, stops and rests her head against its bark, teeth set. NANCY starts to shake, and next second she's sobbing like a broken-hearted, frightened child. OMIT 61A. OMIT 61A. 62. But she shakes herself silent. Wipes the tears away with a slash 62. of sleeve. She rubs her arm absently, lost in thought, then reacts in surprise and pain. She lifts her arm and stares at the spot she's touched.

INSERT ON HER ARM and the BURN there; about the size and shape of a half-dollar.

WIDER ON NANCY. Utterly, chillingly confused.

62A. TINA, against the tree inches from NANCY, (SC 7) -- turns to her and says --

TINA Couldn't get back to sleep at all. (beat) What you dream?


NANCY is walking quickly, head erect, jaw set. Then she enters her father's Police Station.


NANCY crosses directly to the GARCIA.

NANCY My dad here?

GARCIA looks up from his paperwork.


LT THOMPSON emerges from another room, uneasy to see NANCY.

LT THOMPSON Decide to take a day off after all?

NANCY Dad, I want to see Rod Lane.

THOMPSON doesn't miss a beat.

LT THOMPSON Only family allowed, Nancy. You know the drill.

NANCY Just want to talk to him a second.

LT THOMPSON He's dangerous.

NANCY You don't know he did it.

LT THOMPSON No, I know, thanks to your own testimony, that he was locked in a room with a girl who went in alive and came out in a rubber bag.

NANCY flinches; her father shows the first signs of color in his neck.

NANCY I just want to talk to him. (beat, lower) Please, Dad.

THOMPSON shifts almost imperceptibly towards GARCIA, then turns back to NANCY.

LT THOMPSON Make it fast.


65. INT. CELL AREA. DAY. 65.

A GUARD exits pushing a cart of food trays. NANCY waits warily until he's gone, then looks back to ROD LANE. ROD looks more like a captured coyote than a human; haggard, ribbed, expecting poisoned bait. His hair is wet, his clothes are borrowed jeans and work shirt.

NANCY (low) And then what happened?

ROD I told you. (reluctantly) It was dark, but I'm sure there was someone else IN there, under the covers with her.

NANCY reacts.

NANCY How could somebody get under the covers with you guys without you knowing it?

ROD How the fuck do I know? (beat) I don't expect you to believe me.

NANCY studies his encrypted eyes. Surprisingly, she looks like she just might believe him. She leans closer with a new thought.

NANCY What he look like? You get a look at him?

He looks away.


NANCY Well then how can you say somebody else was there?

ROD Because somebody cut her. While I watched.

Now the place is so quiet you can hear heartbeats.

NANCY Somebody cut her while you watched and you don't know what he looked like?

ROD smiles an insane smile, stuck with a reality no one will buy.

ROD You couldn't see the fucker. You could just see the cuts happening, all at once.

NANCY gives a twitch.

NANCY What you mean 'all at once'?

ROD (low) I mean, it was as if there were four razors cutting her at the same time. But invisible razors. She just... opened up...

By now he's picking at a clot of dark blood on his jacket, as if it was a scab on his own body. Then he catches NANCY watching and turns away to the back of the cell. He smashes his fist into the wall -- bone-crushing blows that scare the wits out of NANCY.


He stops, and his fist is dripping blood as he says in a small, sad voice.

ROD I probably could've saved her if I'd moved sooner... But I thought it was just another nightmare, like the one I had the night before. (beat) There... was this guy who had knives for fingers...

CLOSE ON NANCY, unable to swallow the gorge rising in her throat. ROD turns to her, and to his surprise she's ashen.

ROD (CONTD) Do you think I did it?




FADE UP ON ESTABLISHING SHOT as a spooky WIND sets a DOG BARKING down the block. A CAR goes by, then this pleasant residential street falls into silence. CAMERA has MOVED IN on NANCY's well-tended two-story home.


The house is in shadow. Alone, MARGE scrapes the last of the evening's dishes and slips them into the dishwasher. Neither she nor her daughter has touched the food. But MARGE is well into a bottle of gin; her appetite for that is growing, right along with her dread. She turns and looks up the stairs, calling.

MARGE Nancy, don't fall asleep in there.

NANCY (OS) I won't.

MARGE Get into bed.


NANCY I will.

NANCY'S in the tub, so drowsy she can hardly rinse without falling asleep. The water in the tub is opaque with suds. Luxurious.

CLOSER ANGLE, AT WATER LEVEL ON NANCY. Her eyes droop. She slides closer to the surface of the water, letting its heat sooth her nerves. Her eyes stare straight up, glazed; her breathing deepens.

REVERSE, across to her legs, crooked, one knee on each side of the tub. There's a ripple in the water between. Then something tiny and shiny breaks the surface between them. It pops up with a slithering MUSIC CUE and catches a sliver of light. Then it begins to rise.

Higher and higher it rises, soon accompanied by another, then two more shining, gleaming blades, and then the full glove and dark hairy hand and then the wrist and arm, straight up light an evil sapling between the girl's knees, the knives bloosoming into a bright flower of razor sharp steel in the air, moving over the girl's belly. The hand rears back, the claws arch to strike.


MARGE raps on the door. The instant she does NANCY jerks up, opening her eyes groggily. The dark wet arm, hand and knifes are gone.


MARGE (OS) (through the door) You're not falling asleep, are you? You could drown, you know.

NANCY Mother, for petesakes.

MARGE (OS) It happens all the time. (brighter) I've got some warm milk all ready for you. Why don't you jump into bed? (fading) I'm gonna turn on your electric blanket, too. C'mon, now. (then she's gone into another room)

NANCY (low) Warm milk. Gross.

She slides down to water level again, and sings softly, thoughtfully to herself.

NANCY (CONTD) One, two, Freddie's coming for you, three four, better lock your door, five six, grab your crucifix, seven eight gonna stay up late, nine ten, never sleep again...

The next instant she's jerked with incredible violence straight down beneath the surface of the tub -- as if the bottom had suddenly dropped out and she was in a bottomless well!


LOOKING UP PAST HER ANKLES we SEE NANCY pulled sharply down into really deep water, the dim light of the surface and bathroom beyond receding with each yank. And yet she somehow flails and gasps and struggles back towards the surface, managing by pure panic to break the surface with her hands!


MARGE rushes to the door and listens, alarmed at the wild SPLASHING audible through the locked door.



MARGE'S VOICE reaches to the girl, who thrusts up through main force and breaks the surface with her head and shoulders.


Gasping and choking, NANCY breaks the surface of her bathwater, like a drowning sailer getting one last chance. Her mother's VOICE booms over her, ECHOED and frantic -- and the loud BANGING on the door finally opens her eyes. She turns and calls gasping to her mother --

NANCY Mommy!

REVERSE ON THE DOOR -- as MARGE, using the old hangar through the doorhandle truck, makes it into the room. She rushes across to the tub. NANCY is staggering up in the bathwater, again with solid porcelain beneath her feet.

MARGE I told you! Hundreds of people a year drown like that!

The mother throws a towel around the gasping girl, helps her from the tub and begins drying her like a child. NANCY looks like she's likes paralized with some sort of weird dread.

MARGE You okay?


MARGE (not believing it for a minute) To bed with you, c'mon.

MARGE rushes out to get the room ready. NANCY turns and looks at herself in the cabinet mirror, then opens the medicine chest and begins a quick, furtive search.

CLOSER as she takes out the box of No Doz and slips it into her robe.

OMIT SCS. 69 & 70------------------------------- OMIT SCS. 69 & 70


NANCY emerges from the bathroom yawning. MARGE follows as the girl plods obediently to her room.

MARGE No television, forget the homework, no phone calls.

NANCY No, Mother. Yes, Mother. No, Mother.


MARGE And no school tomorrow, either. you take a little vacation, relax and rest for a change.

NANCY Yes, Mother. G'night.

MARGE offers a smile, and a little yellow pill.

MARGE Take this, it'll help you sleep.

NANCY Right.

NANCY pops it in her mouth and swallows obediently. MARGE leans to her with a kiss.

MARGE Sleep tight, don't let the bedbugs bite.

MARGE goes out, relieved. NANCY closes the door, leans against it and spits the pill into her hand. She tosses it straight out her window and takes a NoDoz.


73. OMIT OMIT 73.



75. PULL BACK to REVEAL NANCY propped up in bed, furtively watching. Or 75. is she just thinking? A bedside CLOCK reads 12:45 pm.

The girl YAWNS. She shakes herself violently and sits up straighter, forcing herself to concentrate on the movie.

75A. ON THE TELEVISION SCREEN. A DIVER struggles to keep facing a 75A. large circling shark.

75B. ON NANCY. Her eyes droop shut -- then she jerks awake, rattling 75B. her head as if it were a radio drifting off station. She tumbles out of bed, throws open the window and takes a deep breath of the cool night air.


HIGH ANGLE, AT SECOND-STORY LEVEL. NANCY looks directly across the street to a lighted, open window. Its curtains, sucked out and waving in the night breeze, give the only motion to the deserted street.

Then someone pitches out of the dark at her. NANCY gives a YELP -- then clamps her hand over her mouth as she recognizes GLEN, balanced precariously on the rose trellis outside her window.

GLEN Sorry! Saw your light on. Thought I'd see how you were.

She gets herself together, barely.

NANCY Sometimes I wish you didn't live right across the street.

GLEN Shut up and let me in. You ever stand on a rose trellis in your bare feet?


NANCY looks over her shoulder to make sure her mother hasn't heard. GLEN's already through her window and planted on her bed. NANCY points to a chair.

NANCY If you don't mind.

GLEN crosses to the chair and plops down.

GLEN So. I heard you freaked out in English class today.

There's no maliciousness in his voice, and the familiar frankness is actually comforting to NANCY.

NANCY Guess I did.

GLEN Haven't slept, have you?

NANCY Not really.

NANCY tries to smile, but can't fake it very well. GLEN looks her over.

GLEN You look dead and rained on, if you want the ugly truth. And what you do to your arm?

She shrugs, trying to keep it casual.

NANCY Burned myself in Englsh class.

She hazards a look in the mirror, and her jaw drops.

NANCY M'god, I look twenty years old. (turning back to him) You have any weird dreams last night?

GLEN Slept like a rock.

NANCY (pleased) Well at least I have an objective wall to bounce this off. (off) You believe it's possible to dream about what's going to happen?


NANCY You believe in the Boogey Man?

GLEN One two, Freddie's coming for you? No. Rod killed Tina. he's a fruitcake and you know it.

NANCY You believe in anything?

GLEN I believe in you, me, and Rock and Roll. And I'm not too sure about you lately.

NANCY thinks.

NANCY Listen, I got a crazy favor to ask.

GLEN Uh-oh...

NANCY It's nothing too hard or anything. (beat) I'm just going to... LOOK for someone, and... I want you to be sort of a ...guard. Okay?

GLEN makes the Twilight Zone sound.


GLEN Okay, okay. (beat) I think.

She comes very close to him.

NANCY You won't screw up, right? I mean, a whole lot might depend on it.

The way she's looking at him gives him the creeps.

GLEN Okay, I won't screw up.

77. Nancy takes a deep breath. Then without another word turns off 77. the TV and the light.

GLEN (IN DARK) Jesus, it's dark in here.

NANCY Shhh. Now listen, here's what we're gonna do...


FADE UP ON NANCY, still in her pajamas, walking through the shadowy streets near her home, listening for the slightest sound. We MOVE with her. But nothing, not even the dog barking earlier, is there now. NANCY peers into the darkness of lawns and trees behind her.

NANCY (stage whisper) You still there?

Across the street and a distance away, GLEN steps from behind a tree.

GLEN Yeah. So?

NANCY Just checking -- keep out of sight!

GLEN throws up his hands in exasperation and walks back out of sight. NANCY turns and looks down between the houses, deep into a dark alleyway. Then she forces herself to walk into it.

79. EXT. ALLEY. NIGHT. 79.

MOVING WITH HER as she makes herself go deeper and deeper into shadows. Each time she pauses and waits, the MUSIC grows more threatening and expectant. The feeling is of immense tension -- we're sure the killer will come screaming out on her at any second.

But he doesn't. In fact absolutely nothing happens, and NANCY emerges from the far end of the alley unscathed. The only thing strange is that she now finds her self looking across the mall to


The Police Station. It takes her a little by surprise, it just seems to have appeared.

MUSIC creeps into the NIGHTMARE THEME as NANCY whispers hoarsely back down the dark alley.

NANCY (CONTD) Still there?

81. EXT. ALLEY. NIGHT. 81.

We only HEAR the DISTANT VOICE, slightly ECHOED.

GLEN'S VOICE (OS) (yawning) Still here!

NANCY On your toes, right?

NANCY stares into the dark trying to see him, but she can't. She turns back and makes up her mind to move without him in sight.


MUSIC MOUNTS as we MOVE WITH NANCY across the lawns to the police station, creeping to the first lighted window she sees. It's a low, barred basement window, and NANCY reacts as soon as she looks through it.


NANCY'S POV down into ROD LANE's cell. The boy is on his rough cot, twitching in disturbed sleep. And a long SHADOW is sliding across the wall.

A big SHAPE appears in the shadowed corridor outside the boy's cell, and as IT walks closer NANCY can barely see it's the shambling, grimly scarred man with the filthy red and yellow sweater and strange slouch hat pulled across his brow. The KILLER from all of their nightmares.

And this giant shadow of a man passes through the bars of the cell, like so much evil Jello. Halfway through he pauses, turning to check over his shoulder. We see the bars clearly penetrating his body, going in his head, passing out his ankles. Then he turns back to ROD and moves forward, and within another heartbeat is beside the boy.


NANCY draws back sharply, swallowing in terror. She looks behind her for help.


No answer.

NANCY (CONTD) (louder) Glen?!

The street is absolutely deserted. There is no motion, and no sound save one: the distant but unmistakeable sound of GLEN SNORING.


A beat of silence after the shout's echoes die, then the steady, boyish SNORES again. NANCY swears under her breath and jerks back around, forcing herself to look again into ROD's cell.

85. INT. ROD'S CELL. 85.

IN HER POV -- the killer picks up ROD's bedsheet and tests it between his powerful hands. Without thinking, NANCY bangs against the glass.

NANCY (CONTD) Rod! Look out!

The KILLER wheels around, locking eyes with NANCY. The girl goes white. The man's face is in the light, and it's horrible -- seething with hatred and a twisted, insane intelligence.

The hold of those eyes is only broken when ROD rolls up on an elbow with a deep, troubled GROAN. The instant ROD does this, the KILLER fades into the shadows in the cell. But even then his eyes hold on NANCY's until the last second he's visible.

ROD looks around the cell groggily, runs his fingers through his matted hair, then collapses back on his pillow. No matter how hard NANCY screams, ROD never once looks at the window. He just pulls the twisted covers about his shoulders and succumbs once more to sleep.

And now the bed sheet is no longer on the bed. The KILLER, materializing out of the shadow again, is holding it between his hands like a garrote. He looks up and leers at NANCY, then moves for ROD.


ANGLE BACK ON NANCY. She pounds on the window, then turns in frustration and yells into the night.

NANCY Glen!!

She turns back to the cell in desperation.

87. OMIT OMIT 87.

88. INT. ROD'S CELL. 88.

IN NANCY'S POV we look into a cell that is quite deserted save for ROD. Sleeping peacefully.


NANCY pulls back from the window, stunned.

NANCY I swear...

Suddenly NANCY feels utterly exposed. She shivers, chilled and vulnerable to the bone in her thin night clothes. She can't move. It's as if some great nerve between her instincts and body had been severed. And she hears the SOUND behind her. A sort of filling-vibrating Scrriiitchh.

MUSIC sneaks in -- the unmistakeable NIGHTMARE THEME, creeping over her. NANCY forces herself, by sheer will, to look.

90. Ahead of her perhaps twenty-five feet, covered with a thick 90. plastic body bag through which we can barely see her face, is TINA. Standing square in the middle of the street. A dark ooze of BLACK EELS roil out of its bottom, and at its top, the zipper CHATTERS down and the greenish-white face of TINA lolls out. She gestures, supplicating, her watery eyes desperate to convey some desperate message.


91. NANCY backs away, eyes streaming tears. 91.

NANCY Glen, where are you! Wake up! Glen!


NANCY twists around in horror at the same instant the KILLER grabs for her face with his knife-fingers! The girl intinctively pitches back, then scrambles up and runs like hell!

NANCY Glen! Glen!!!


MOVING WITH NANCY at full gallop, running blind. She crashes through a sawhorse into a new sidewalk, sinking into the wet cement over her ankles. The stuff sticks to her legs in long gluey globs and she can barely pull her feet loose.

The KILLER looms nearby, mocking her -- his scalpel claws gleaming in the streetlight. He just misses the girl as she wrenches free and flees again, now so winded she can only stagger.

MOVING WITH THEM. Time after time NANCY just barely manages to elude the shadowy form, leaping from his reach by inches and pouring on more steam. It's too close to even bother screaming now; and besides, that would take breath she doesn't have. The only SOUND is of RUNNING FOOTSTEPS, RASPING BREATH and the KNIFE-FINGERS WHISTLING through the air.


NANCY tears across her front lawn and into the open front door of her home, SLAMMING it with all her might. There's a tremendously satisfying CONCUSSION of wood against doorframe, and the LOCKS fall shut.


NANCY Glennn!!!

But her voice is garbled as if she's under water, and there's no answer. The only clue to Glen being there at all is his distant SNORING. Innocent. Persistent. Deep.

NANCY stops, breath in shreds, face smeared with dirt and tears. Something is clawing the window in the dark of the kitchen. NANCY looks and catches the MAN prying at the glass with his big knife-fingers, the sharp blades SIZZLING against the edges of the glass as they crack it away from the frame. NANCY runs upstairs in blind panic.


NANCY darts into her unlit bedroom, slams the door and locks it.

Safe at last.




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