Heart of Clouds screenplay

by Adrienne Wilson

adaptation from my novel, chapter three

(for Walter Halsey Davis)

EXT. DRIFTWOOD HUT, MORNING. SUNNY LIGHT

Teenie sits in the hut, marveling at the abalone shell, and her origami bird, while a seal dips and dives in the waves, watching her. She draws a little puffy cumulus cloud shape with a heart inside, and the words, “Who are you?” for Devlin, thinking of the boy, and that he must have left the beautiful shell. She decides to leave this for him, in a stone stack, and we see her combing the beach to find three stones, then carefully tucking the note and tucking it under the second stone.

EXT. MORNING, VILLAGE. SUNNY

Teenie rides her bike through village on way to Mr. Honeygarten’s Victorian to ask for apples. Mellowman, his Golden Retriever barks and clowns around at the old picket fence in happiness to see her again.

TEENIE

(smiling and petting his head, through the fence)

Mello, Mello, Mello

A jay comes to a screeching landing on the old fence, looking for peanuts near them.

TEENIE

Mr. Honeygarten are you there?

HONEYGARTEN

(calls down to her, from a window)

Just a minute dear, let me get my staff

Well hello, Teenie, How very nice to see you again

Mr. Honeygarten I was wondering if I might be able to have some of those apples on your trees. I want to make a pie.

(We close in on his eyes, crinkling at the corners, face breaking into a warm smile)

HONEYGARTEN

You do? I see. Well suppose you help me pick them, I seem to have plenty to spare this year.

TEENIE

I want to share it with you Mr. Honeygarten

HONEYGARTEN

Oh my, I haven’t had an apple pie for a very long time

TEENIE

Neither have I. Not since Dad left.

HONEYGARTEN

You must miss him very much Teenie

TEENIE

I do, every single day

HONEYGARTEN

Well let me see, we’ll need a basket and a ladder. How about if you go around to the garden shed and collect those for us and I’ll meet you by the trees.

INT. GARDEN SHED. DIM LIGHT

Teenie enters the shed, full of all the old seed packages and clay pots and tools and almanacs Mr. Honeygarten had collected over the years, brushing cobwebs aside, to get to the trug and ladder. Swallow’s nests cling to the eaves outside. She and Mr. Honeygarten both make their way to the trees, with Mellowman at his side.

HONEYGARTEN

(eyes follow a red tail hawk circling overhead, as he makes his way through the tangled grasses to his trees)

Melloman, look!

(dog’s eyes follow the bird)

EXT. APPLE TREES. DAY – SUNNY

Teenie picks twenty of the apples, and carries the basket to his porch, returns ladder to the shed.

HONEYGARTEN

Will you have some tea dear?

TEENIE

Can I make the pie first?

HONEYGARTEN

All right. Why don’t you take that old basket with you?

TEENIE

Thank you Mr. Honeygarten, I’ll be back this afternoon. I hope the pie will cheer Mom up.

MONTAGE (flashback)

Teenie’s parents Jax and Christina are seen dancing at a potluck at “The Village Crier” the town’s newspaper, during happy times. We see a “For Sale” sign on the shuttered building. Teenie rides through the village, looking up at her old house.

TEENIE

Mom, I have apples! You should see them.

CHRISTINA

(pulls blankets up around her, wan smile from the couch. The TV news blaring on and on about climate change and animals going extinct)

TEENIE

I’m going to make pie!

EXT. DRIFTWOOD HUT. MORNING.

Devlin at dunes, approaches the hut, sees Teenie’s footprints on the sand. Sandpipers and gulls flurry along the beach. Pulls harmonica from his pocket and practices blowing out some tunes. A huge gull perches on the seahut.

DEVLIN

Too much plastic in the sea right now, it’s not good for you.

Devlin climbs into hut, and sees the Origami bird and the shell, and the three stacked stones Teenie left him. He finds her note.

DEVLIN

(whispers)

“Who am I” How am I ever going to explain that to her?