>> I/ Pet Sematary I

I/ Pet Sematary I. .

: I/ Pet Sematary I.

I/ Pet Sematary I

FADE IN ON

that most persistent summer SOUND: crickets in high grass-- ree-ree-ree-ree... This in dark which slowly

DISSOLVES TO:

EXT. A GRAVE MARKER SUMMER DAY

It's a plywood cross leaning aslant. Written on the crossarm in black paint which has faded: SMUCKY HE WAS OBEDIENT. The letters are faded. They are also straggling and ill-formed--the work of a child.

MAIN TITLES BEGIN.

EXT. ANOTHER GRAVE MARKER

A child's printing again, this time on a chunk of warped crating: BIFFER BIFFER A HELLUVA SNIFFER UNTIL HE DIED HE MADE US RICHER 1971-1974.

MAIN TITLES CONTINUE

EXT. TWO MARKERS

I think all these shots are LAP DISSOLVES. All is silence but for the crickets and the wind stirring the grass. Around the markers themselves, the grass has been clipped short, and by some markers there are flowers in cheap vases. Crisco cans, Skippy peanut butter jars, etc.

These two markers: IN MEMORY OF MARTA OUR PET RABIT DYED MARCH 1, 1965 (on a wide flat board) and GEN PATTON (OUR! GOOD! DOG!) APRIL 1958 (another board).

MAIN TITLES CONTINUE

EXT. FIVE OR SIX MARKERS

We can't read all of them; some are too faded (or the "gravestones" themselves too degenerated), but we can see now that this woodland clearing's a rather eerie -- and well-populated -- animal graveyard.

We can see: POLYNESIA, 1953 and HANNAH THE BEST DOG THAT EVER LIVED. HANNAH'S tombstone is part of an old Chevrolet hood, painstakingly hammered flat.

MAIN TITLES CONTINUE.

EXT. ANGLE ON THE PET SEMATARY

From here we can see most of the clearing, which is surrounded by forest pines. We can see that the graves--maybe 80 in all--are arranged in rough concentric circles. On the far side of this clearing is the end of a path which spills into this graveyard clearing. The end of the path is flanked by wooden poles which hold up a crude arch. We can see no writing on this side -- the words on the arch face those arriving along the path.

MAIN TITLES CONTINUE

EXT. THE ARCH, FROM THE PATH SIDE, CU

MAIN TITLES CONCLUDE. Written on the arch in faded black paint is the work of some long-gone child: PET SEMATARY.

THE CAMERA HOLDS ON THIS FOR A MOMENT OR TWO, THEN PANS SLOWLY DOWN to look through the arch. From this angle we are looking across to a deadfall--a tangle of weather-whitened old dead branches at the back of the graveyard. It's maybe twenty-five feet from side to side and about nine feet high. At either end are thick tangles of underbrush that look impassible.

AS MAIN TITLES CONCLUDE, THE CAMERA MOVES SLOWLY IN on the deadfall. And as it does, we realize that there is a horrible snarling face in those branches. Is this an accident? Coincidence? Our imagination? Perhaps the audience will wonder. THE CAMERA HOLDS ON IT and then we

DISSOLVE TO:

BLACK. And a white title card: MOVING DAY.

EXT. A HOUSE IN THE COUNTRY EVENING

SOUND of crickets: ree-ree-ree-ree...

To the left of this house: a big empty field. Behind it: the woods. Before it: a wide two-lane road.

The house is a pleasant two-story New England dwelling with a shed/garage attached. In front of it is a sign which reads QUINN REALTORS 292 HAMMOND STREET, BANGOR. A big SOLD strip, like a bumper sticker, has been plastered across it diagonally.

GROWING SOUND: the rumble of a truck. A big, big truck. It belts between the CAMERA and the house -- a tanker truck with a silver body and the word ORINCO written on the side in blue letters. Its short-stack is blowing quantities of dark brown smoke. Behind it comes a Ford wagon, which slows, signals, and turns into the driveway of the house we've been looking at.

EXT. REAR OF THE WAGON

As LOUIS CREED brings it to a stop we get a good look at the license plate (Illinois) and a bumper sticker (HAVE YOU HUGGED YOUR M.D. TODAY?)

The ENGINE SOUND stops. For a moment or two we hear only the ree- ree-ree-ree of crickets. Then:

ELLIE CREED (voice) Is this our new house, daddy?

LOUIS CREED (voice) This is it.

EXT. THE WAGON, A NEW ANGLE

The two front doors and one back door open. LOUIS CREED, about 32, gets out from the driver's side. RACHEL CREED, his wife, gets out from the passenger side. From the rear door comes ELLIE CREED, a girl of 6. They are staring, fascinated, at the house.

They come together, the three of them, by the front of the wagon, still staring at the house. LOUIS is clearly nervous.

LOUIS So...what do you think?

RACHEL begins to smile. She turns to LOUIS and hugs him.

RACHEL It's gorgeous!

ELLIE Am I really gonna have my own room?

LOUIS Yes.

ELLIE Yaay!

She looks toward the side lawn and sees a tire on a rope hanging down from the bough of a tree.

ELLIE (to RACHEL) Is that a swing?

RACHEL Yes, but the rope might be--

ELLIE Yaay!

She goes running toward it. RACHEL gives LOUIS a tired smile.

LOUIS Let her go. It's cool.

RACHEL Louis, the house is beautiful.

They kiss--gently at first, then more passionately. As he draws her more tightly against him, a baby--GAGE--begins to cry from the car. LOUIS and RACHEL break the clinch.

RACHEL The Master of Disaster awakes.

This SOUND is joined by the unhappy yowling of a pent-up tomcat.

LOUIS And Buckaroo Banzai.

RACHEL Come on--let's parole 'em.

They walk to the car, RACHEL going to one of the back seat doors, LOUIS to the rear of the wagon.

INT. THE FRONT SEAT, WITH RAHEL AND GAGE

GAGE is sitting in his car seat, not exactly crying but certainly yelling to be let out. The seat, dash, and floorboards are littered with roadmaps, soda cans, Big Mac boxes, and similar crud. These folks have driven all the way from Chicago to Maine in this station wagon, and the wagon looks it.

RACHEL Decided to wake up and see what home looks like, huh?

She begins to unbuckle the straps and harnesses. GAGE is just wearing a t-shirt and a diaper. He's fifteen months old.

EXT. THE REAR OF THE WAGON, WITH LOUIS

He opens the doorgate and lifts out a cat carrier. We see a big tomcat inside--mostly what we're aware of are shining green eyes.

ELLIE (voice) Daddy! Mommy! I see a path!

LOUIS, cat carrier still in hand, turns toward:

EXT. ELLIE IN THE TIRE SWING

She's got it penduluming back and forth in long wide arcs.

EXT. THE VIEW UP TOWARD THE WOODS, ELLIE'S POV

We see the field, and a clearly marked and mown path leading up its flank and into the dark woods.

THE CAMERA DIPS AND PENDULUMS as ELLIE swings.

EXT. RACHEL AND GAGE (FRONT OF THE CAR)

RACHEL (irritated) Not so high, Ellie! You don't know how strong that rope is.

She puts GAGE down. He totters a bit on his little legs and then stands there, looking at his sister.

EXT. THE ROPE AND THE BRANCH, CU

The bark has rubbed off the branch--it looks like a bone peeping through decayed flesh. The rope is old, discolored. And it is fraying away as we look at it. Soon ELLIE, like Humpty Dumpty, is going to have a great fall.

EXT. LOUIS (REAR OF THE CAR)

He's set the cat-carrier down and is straightening up.

ELLIE (raptuous voice) Wheee!

LOUIS Ellie, you heard your m---

His eyes widen.

EXT. ELLIE

ELLIE Wh--

SOUND: A heavy twang! as the rope breaks. The tire swing--with ELLIE still inside it--goes crashing to the grass. ELLIE screams and begins to cry--a little hurt and a lot surprised.

LOUIS and RACHEL run to her.

LOUIS RACHEL Ellie! Are you all right? Honey? Are you okay?

EXT. ELLIE, RACHEL, LOUIS, A CLOSER SHOT

ELLIE'S parents reach the tangle of tire, rope, and six-year-old girl.

ELLIE Hurrts! It hurrrrts!

LOUIS Anyone who can scream that loud isn't ready for intensive care just yet-- looks like she just skinned her knee.

Nevertheless, he begins to rapidly disentangle his daughter from the tire. RACHEL helps.

EXT. GAGE

He's standing in the driveway by the front of the car, utterly forgotten in the heat of the moment. His diaper is sagging quite a bit; the boy needs a change.

He stares toward the scene of the accident for a bit, then loses interest. CAMERA FOLLOWS as he walks down the side of the station wagon, little bare feet slapping on the asphalt. He stops for a moment at the back, looking at the cat-carrier, which LOUIS never got around to opening. CHURCH is staring hopefully out through the mesh.

GAGE Hi-Durch!

CHURCH Waow!

GAGE bends down and tries to open the cat-carrier's door. No soap. Either he can't solve the latch or his fingers don't have the strength. Anyway, he stops trying after a moment.

SOUND: Growing thunder of an approaching truck - a big one.

EXT. THE ROAD (GAGE'S POV)

A big tanker truck--silver body, ORINCO written on the side in blue letters--blasts by.

EXT. GAGE, BY THE CAT CARRIER

The windlash if the passing truck blows GAGE'S hair back from his forehead. We should be scared here--not by the truck, but by GAGE'S lack of fear. He's smiling, happy.

GAGE Druck!

He starts down the driveway toward the road.

EXT. LOUIS, RACHEL, ELLIE (AT THE SWING)

ELLIE has been disentangled from the swing. She's sitting by the wreckage at the end of the driveway, weeping hysterically (as much from tiredness as from pain, I think) as LOUIS and RACHEL examine her scraped knee. The wound doesn't look too serious.

LOUIS (to RACHEL) Would you get the first aid kit?

ELLIE (screaming) Not the stingy stuff! I don't want the stingy stuff, daddy!

RACHEL suddenly looks around toward:

EXT. THE FRONT OF THE WAGON (RACHEL'S POV)

No one there.

EXT. RACHEL, ELLIE, LOUIS, BY THE SWING

RACHEL Gage's gone!

LOUIS Jesus, the road!

They get up together.

EXT. GAGE, AT THE EDGE OF THE ROAD

A truck is coming. A great big one.

EXT. ANGLE ON THE TRUCK, CU

The grille looks like a tombstone that's learned how to snarl.

EXT. GAGE

He takes a step into the road...and then big, gnarled hands grab him.

GAGE looks rather surprised at this, but not worried--this kid is used to being picked up and treated humanely. To GAGE strangers are as interesting as...well, as interesting as Orinco trucks.

EXT. GAGE AND JUD CRANDALL

The fellow who has picked GAGE up is a man of about eighty in old blue jeans, a faded Bruce Springsteen t-shirt. Over this he wears a faded khaki vest with bright silver buttons. His face is deeply wrinkled and kindly.

JUD CRANDALL (to GAGE) No you don't, my friend--not in that road.

But he softens this with a grin. GAGE grins back at him.

GAGE Drucks!

JUD (low) No shit, Sherlock.

JUD carries him up the driveway to the station wagon. Here he's joined by LOUIS and RACHEL, out of breath and really scared. ELLIE brings up the rear. She's still sniffling.

RACHEL Gage!

JUD (hands him to her) He was headed for the road, looked like. I corralled him for you, missus.

RACHEL Thank you. Thank you so much.

LOUIS Yes--thanks. I'm Louis Creed.

He sticks out his hand and JUD shakes it. LOUIS takes it easy--no crushing JayCees grip, or anything like that--the old guy looks as if he might have arthritis.

JUD Jud Crandall. I live just across the road.

RACHEL I'm Rachel. Thanks again for saving the wandering minstrel boy, here.

JUD No harm, no foul. But you want to watch out for that road. Those damn trucks go back and forth all day and most of the night.

He leans over toward ELLIE.

JUD Who might you be, little Miss?

ELLIE I'm Ellen Creed and I live at 642 Alden Lane, Dearborn, Michigan. (Pause) At least, I used to.

JUD And now you live on Route 9 in Ludlow, and your dad's gonna be the new doctor up to the college, I hear, and I think you're going to be just as happy as a clam here, Ellen Creed.

ELLIE (to LOUIS) Are clams really happy?

They all laugh--even GAGE.

RACHEL Excuse me, Mr. Crandall--I've got to change this kid. It's nice to meet you.

JUD Same here. Come over and visit when you get the chance.

As RACHEL, carrying GAGE, moves away:

ELLIE (worries) Daddy, do I really have to have the stingy stuff?

LOUIS No-I guess not.

ELLIE Yayyy!

She goes belting off.

JUD (amused) I guess your daughter there ain't going to die after all.

LOUIS (also amused) I guess not.

JUD House has stood empty for too long. It's damn good to see people in it again.

SOUND: A truck engine, gearing down.

EXT. A MOVING VAN

It blinks and comes lumbering into the Creed's driveway.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD

LOUIS Hey--they actually found the place!

JUD Movin' in's mighty thirsty work. I usually sit out on my porch of an evening and pour a couple of beers over m'dinner. Come on over and join me, if you want.

LOUIS Well, maybe I----

RACHEL (voice) Louis, what's this?

EXT. RACHEL AND GAGE

GAGE has been changed, and RACHEL is following him as he explores the nearest edges of the new homestead. They are fairly close to the wreckage of the tire swing, and here is the head of the path ELLIE has already glimpsed.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD

They cross to the van. The FIRST and SECOND MOVERS are just climbing out of the van.

FIRST MOVER You Mr. Creed?

LOUIS Yes. Just a second.

EXT. RACHEL AND GAGE, AT THE HEAD OF THE PATH

She's holding GAGE on her hip now, and both of them are looking at that strange (and oddly enticing) path which disappears into the deepening twilight. LOUIS and JUD join them.

LOUIS The movers--

RACHEL Yes--I know. This path, Louis? Where does it go?

LOUIS I don't have the slightest idea. When I saw the house, this field was under four feet of snow.

RACHEL (smiling) I bet Mr. Crandall knows!

JUD nods. He smiles, too, but underneath the smile we sense that he is serious.

JUD Oh, ayuh! I know. It's a good story, and a good walk, too. I'll take you up there sometime, and tell you the story, too-- after you get settled in.

He smiles at them and they smile back--it is a look of understanding and real liking, in spite of the age difference between the CREEDS and JUD.

EXT. THE CREED HOUSE NIGHT

SOUND: Crickets. Ree--ree--ree-ree...

There's one light upstairs, one downstairs. Perhaps we see the path, glimmering away into the field? Either by virtue of it being mown, or by virtue of some gentle optical trick? Maybe.

INT. THE LIVING ROOM NIGHT

There's a light on in the kitchen, but it just casts a dim glow in here. The room has a fireplace and a lovely wooden floor. It's going to be nice, but now it's just a big bare box with movers' cartons stacked all over the place.

LOUIS is drinking a can of Pepsi, and he looks pretty damned tired--anyone who's ever moved house and can remember the first night in the new place will understand.

He finishes the last of the Pepsi and surveys the living room. He sits on one of the bigger boxes, takes cigarettes from his pocket, and lights one. He drops the spent match in the empty can, and taps into the can during the scene.

SOUND: Feet coming down the stairs. The door on the far side of the room opens and RACHEL comes in, wearing a nightgown.

RACHEL (crossing to LOUIS) Kids are asleep, doc.

LOUIS Great.

He hugs her. She hugs him back warmly--for a moment they are just two good people in all the big darkness of their new house.

RACHEL You're not really going over to have a beer with that old guy, are you?

LOUIS Well, I've got a million questions about the area, and---

RACHEL ---and you'll end up doing a free consultation on his arthritis or urinary problems and---

LOUIS Did you see his shirt?

RACHEL (giggles) Sure. Bruce Springsteen.

LOUIS I really do have a million questions about the area...but the thing I'm really curious about is how come this octogenarian Yankee is decorating the slumped remains of his pecs with the Boss.

She laughs.

EXT. THE PATH OF THE CRANDALL HOUSE NIGHT

Pervasive SOUND of the crickets as LOUIS comes rather hesitantly up the crazy-paved path from the road's edge.

JUD (voice) That you, doc?

EXT. THE SCREENED-IN PORCH OF THE CRANDALL HOUSE

We hear the SQUEAK of a rocker; we see the dim red fitful glow of JUD'S Pall Mall. We see by its glow that he is wearing Walkman earphones.

EXT. LOUIS

LOUIS It's me.

INT. THE PORCH, WITH JUD

The Walkman is in his lap. He switches it off and puts the headphones casually around his neck, like a kid.

JUD Well, come on up and have a beer.

INT. THE PORCH, A SLIGHTLY WIDER SHOT

LOUIS comes on up. JUD has got a pail of ice beside his chair with some cans of beer in it. He opens one and hands it to LOUIS.

JUD You need a glass?

LOUIS Not at all.

JUD Good for you.

LOUIS drinks half the can at a draught.

LOUIS God, that's fine.

JUD Ain't it just? The man who invented beer, Louis, that man was having a prime day for himself.

LOUIS What were you listening to?

JUD Allman Brothers.

LOUIS What?

JUD The Eat A Peach album. God, they were good before drugs and bad luck caught up with them. Listen to this, Louis.

He passes the headphones over. LOUIS puts them on. JUD presses the Walkman's PLAY button.

SOUND: Ramblin' Man blasts us out of our seats.

LOUIS winces and rakes the spidery earphones off his head.

JUD I'm sorry. Wait.

He turns it down.

JUD Try that.

LOUIS puts the earphones back on and listens for a few moments. It's the instrumental break. Gregg and Duane Allman dueling hot Fenders. LOUIS takes the earphones off.

LOUIS Nice.

JUD I like rock and roll. No...I guess that's too mild. I love it. Since my ears started to die out on me, it's the only music I can really hear. And since my wife died...I dunno, some- times a little rock and roll fills up night. Not always, but sometimes. (Pause) One more time--welcome to Ludlow. Hope your time here will be a happy one.

LOUIS (great sincerity) Thank you, Mr. Crandall.

He drinks again--they both do. There's a moment of companionable silence here, broken by the SOUND of a big truck. They look toward:

EXT/INT. THE ROAD (THROUGH THE PORCH SCREEN)

One of those big tanker trucks goes rumbling by--now there are little amber running lights on top of it. It's going fast, too-- sweeps by in a blast of air.

INT. THE PORCH, WITH LOUIS AND JUD

LOUIS (wincing) Jesus!

JUD (lights a cigarette) That's one mean road, all right--you remember that path your wife commented on?

LOUIS The one that goes into the woods--sure.

JUD That road--and those Orinco trucks-- are the two main reasons it's there.

LOUIS What's at the end of it?

JUD (smiles) Another day--after you get settled in a bit. Meantime, doc---

Here JUD raises his glass in a toast.

JUD (continues) Here's to your bones.

LOUIS clinks his glass against JUD'S.

LOUIS And yours.

They drink.

EXT. ROUTE 9 NIGHT

LOUIS crosses from the CRANDALL side to his own, and the CAMERA FOLLOWS as he walks slowly up the driveway and past the wagon. He pauses for a moment, looking thoughtfully--hopefully--at his new house. Then something--the CRY of an OWL, perhaps--draws his attention the other way...toward the path.

He walks to its head and stands looking out at it--it glimmers in a wide cut swath that's a bit ghostly in the dark.

A SHAPE suddenly lurches out of the high grass at him, and LOUIS recoils with a startled, muffled cry.

EXT. CHURCH

The cat, sure; who--or what--else? We see his big green eyes in the dark as he cries his strange feline hello: Waow!

EXT. LOUIS AND CHURCH, AT THE HEAD OF THE PATH

LOUIS Church! God, you scared the life out of me!

CHURCH Waow!

LOUIS bends and picks up the cat. As he does, that truck SOUND comes again and he looks toward:

EXT. THE ROAD, LOUIS'S POV

Another Orinco tanker drones by, fast.

EXT. LOUIS AND CHURCH

LOUIS (to the cat) I know one thing that will keep you home, good buddy.

He starts toward the house.

BLACK. And in that blackness, we see a second title card: THE DEAD SPEAK.

INT. A KITCHEN BLACKBOARD, CU DAY

Written on it is: MONDAY 1.) CHURCH SPAYED 10 A.M. QUENTIN JOLANDER, D.V.M. And below, in even bigger letters: 2.) ELLIE'S FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL!!

THE CAMERA PANS LEFT, showing us the kitchen. There are still a few cardboard cartons around, but the place is getting in shape.

We look out the window and see the CREEDS, led by JUD CRANDALL, climbing the path toward the woods. LOUIS has got GAGE in a Gerrypak.

EXT. AT THE TOP OF THE HILL, WITH CREEDS AND JUD

They are also at the edge of the woods. JUD stops and lets them catch up.

JUD Take a look behind you.

They turn around, and their faces express their wonder.

LOUIS My God!

RACHEL It's beautiful!

EXT. THE VIEW

It is indeed beautiful. The CREED house is in the f.g., Route 9 just behind it (with one of the ever-present Orinco trucks droning along), but behind that is the great sweep of the Penobscot river valley, dozing under a fall sky of clear blue.

EXT. AT THE TOP OF THE HILL, WITH JUD AND THE CREEDS

JUD You folks ready to go on?

LOUIS Sure.

ELLIE But where are we going, Mr. Crandall?

JUD You'll see soon enough, hon.

They go into the woods, still following the path.

EXT. FOREST DAY

These are old woods indeed--huge trunks with dusty sunlight shafting through them. It looks as though man has never made his mark here.

THE CAMERA PANS SLOWLY DOWN to them, on the path. Here it is carpeted with pine needles, but it is just as clearly marked.

JUD stops. LOUIS looks glad of the rest; he's sweating and there are wide dark patches under his arms where the Gerrypak's straps are.

LOUIS Who owns the woods up ahead? Paper companies?

JUD Nope. The Micmac Indians. What's up ahead is all that's left of their tribal lands.

ELLIE (giggling) Micmac, Ricmac, Kickmac, Sickmac.

JUD (smiles) Ayuh, it's a funny word, ain't it? You tired of totin' that yowwen yet, doc?

LOUIS Not yet...how much further is it?

JUD Aw, you'll be okay. Less than a mile.

He starts off again, fresh as a daisy. ELLIE scampers after him. LOUIS rolls his eyes at his wife and RACHEL rolls hers back. Then they press on.

EXT. THE ARCH READING PET SEMATARY

EXT. JUD AND THE CREEDS, ON THE PATH

JUD (stopping) This is the place, honey.

ELLIE is of course second. Se tries to read the words on the arch but can't. She whips around to look at her mother.

ELLIE What's it say, mommy?

A strange expression has come over RACHEL'S face--she doesn't like this. Not a bit.

RACHEL It says Pet Cemetery, hon. It's misspelled, but...that's what it says.

She runs for the arch. RACHEL starts; looks more uneasy than ever.

RACHEL Ellen--!

EXT. ELLIE

She's almost under the arch. She looks back, questioning.

EXT. RACHEL, LOUIS, JUD

RACHEL (a bit lame) Be careful.

EXT. ELLIE

She goes racing into the Pet Sematary.

EXT. RACHEL, LOUIS, JUD

JUD lights a cigarette with a wooden match, using his thumbnail.

JUD I told you it was a bad road, Louis--it's killed a lot of pets and made a lot of kids unhappy. But at least something good come of it. This place.

ELLIE (excited voice) Mom! Dad! Y'oughtta see it!

EXT. ELLIE, AT THE EDGE OF THE SEMATARY

She surveys the rude markers with puzzled delight, then runs toward the center, pausing to investigate some of the markers as she goes. We clearly see the symmetrical pattern of rings.

EXT. RACHEL, LOUIS, JUD

They are walking slowly toward that rude archway. LOUIS is extremely interested in all this, but it's becoming clearer and clearer that RACHEL is troubled. They stop and look in.

RACHEL How can you call it a good thing? A graveyard for pets killed in the road! Built and maintained by broken- hearted children!

JUD Well, but Missus Creed! It ain't quite that way, deah!

LOUIS I think it's rather extraordinary.

RACHEL Extraordinarily morbid, maybe.

She's growing more and more upset. JUD looks at her curiously.

JUD Well...they have to learn about death somehow, now don't they, Missus Creed? The little ones?

RACHEL (coldly) Why?

JUD Well...well, because--

ELLIE (voice) Mommy! Daddy! Look at me!

EXT. ELLIE, ON THE DEADFALL

She has begun to climb it, and this looks like an extremely dangerous proposition. ELLIE, however, is having the time of her life. A branch breaks under one of her feet and she switches nimbly to the next one up.

EXT. THE GROWNUPS, AT THE ARCH

JUD (alarmed) No, honey! You don't want to go climbing on that! Come on down!

He hurries in.

EXT. ELIIE, ON THE DEADFALL

She looks back at JUD.

ELLIE It's okay, Mr. Crandall--

EXT. ELLIE'S FOOT, CU

The branch she's on breaks with a dry CRRRACK. Her foot drops down suddenly.

EXT. ELLIE AND JUD

She totters backward, pinwheeling her arms, and JUD catches her as she falls. Not much of a catch because she wasn't too far up.

LOUIS joins JUD and ELLIE. GAGE jounces along on his back.

LOUIS Have you got a death-wish, Ellen?

ELLIE Well, I thought it was safe--

JUD Best never to go climbing on old blowdowns like this, Ellie--sometimes they bite.

ELLIE Bite?

JUD Ayuh.

EXT. RACHEL, STANDING AT THE ARCH

Her discomfort makes one thing very clear--she doesn't want to come in.

RACHEL (calls) Is she all right, Louis?

EXT. LOUIS, JUD, ELLIE

LOUIS (calls back) Fine! Come and see!

EXT. RACHEL, STANDING AT THE ARCH

RACHEL (calling) I think I'll sit this one out, doc.

EXT. LOUIS, JUD, ELLIE--BY THE DEADFALL

ELLIE I want to look around, daddy-- may I?

LOUIS For a little while.

JUD looks toward:

EXT. RACHEL AT THE ARCH (ELLEN IN F.G.)

RACHEL has retreated a bit. She sits on the pine needle carpet of the path, opens her purse, and draws out cigarettes.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD

JUD looks at LOUIS as if to say "What's all this about?" LOUIS looks away.

ELLIE (voice) Dad! Daddy! Look! A goldfishie!

EXT. ELLIE

She runs from one tombstone to the next, cheerful as maybe only a kid could be in such a place. She looks at BIFFER'S tombstone; at SMUCKY'S.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD

They are walking slowly toward her. LOUIS is looking at the tombstones.

LOUIS I can hardly read these.

JUD Ayuh--they get older as you go toward the middle. (Points) Pete LaVasseur's dog is buried there... (points) the Stoppard boys' racing pigeon that Missus Cowley's cat got...and I think that's the cat himself right there, although it's been so many years I can't tell for sure. (calling) Missy Ellen! Come over here just a minute!

EXT. ELLEN

She runs amid the tombstones--they have worked their way near to the center and there are quite a few of them--and joins the adults.

JUD I see you're quite a reader for such a little girl. Can you read that?

He points again, and Ellen goes over for a look-see.

EXT. ELLEN, AT THE GRAVE MARKER

It is a small slate marker slanted to one side. ELLEN reads the words laboriously, tracing them with her finger.

ELLEN "Spot a good fellow we love you boy." (Pause) "Owned by Judson...Judson..." Gee, I can't read the rest.

EXT. JUD AND LOUIS

JUD Last name's Crandall, little missy.

LOUIS looks at him sharply as ELLIE rejoins them.

JUD That's where I buried my dog Spot when he died of old age in 19 and 14. Dug it good and deep. By the time I finished, I had blisters all over my hands and a hell of a crick in my back. Soil's stony up here.

ELLIE looks awed. LOUIS looks a little awed, too.

JUD sweeps a hand around, indicating the whole sematary, but is still looking at ELLEN.

JUD Do you know what this place is, Ellie? Oh, I know you know it's a boneyard, but a bone ain't nothing and even a whole pile of 'em don't amount to much. Do you know what a graveyard really is?

ELLIE Well...I guess not.

JUD It's a place where the dead speak, Missy.

He sees her startled, uneasy expression and laughs. He ruffles her hair reassuringly.

JUD No--not right out loud. Their stones speak...or their markers. Even if the marker ain't nothing but a tin can someone wrote on with a Magic Marker, it speaks. Ain't that so, Louis?

LOUIS I think it is so, Ellie.

ELLIE What if you can't read what's written on there anymore?

JUD Well, it still says some animal got laid down here after, don't it?

ELLIE Yes--

LOUIS And that someone cared enough about that animal to mark the spot.

ELLIE To remember.

JUD (smiles) Yes. To remember. This ain't a scary place, Ellie. It's a place of rest and speaking. Can you remember that?

ELLIE (a little awed) Yes, sir.

They start to walk slowly back toward the arch.

EXT. RACHEL, OUTSIDE THE ARCH

It's clear she's impatient and out-of-sorts with the whole thing.

RACHEL (calls) Louis, can we go? I'm tired!

EXT. LOUIS, ELLIE, JUD

ELLIE Mommy! This is a place where dead animals talk! Mr. Crandall said so!

EXT. RACHEL AND ELLIE

But RACHEL is not amused. She doesn't like any of this.

RACHEL (soft) Did he.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD

LOUIS My wife is not crazy about cemeteries of any kind. As you may have noticed.

JUD Me neither. But I believe in knowing your enemy.

LOUIS looks at him, startled, then decides this is a joke. He laughs. JUD smiles, a trifle thinly.

EXT. THE ARCH, A NEW ANGLE

The men rejoin RACHEL and ELLIE.

LOUIS (voice) Did we take too long?

RACHEL (curt) Well, if supper's burned, I'm not the one going out for pizza.

They move away.

EXT. THE DEADFALL, FROM THE ARCH

The face we saw at the beginning of the movie wasn't there when the visitors were there...but it's sure there now, leering at us.

INT. THE KITCHEN TRASH CAN NIGHT

There are two greasy boxes poking out with NAPOLI PIZZA stamped on them. Guess dinner was burned.

THE CAMERA PULLS BACK and we se LOUIS sitting at the kitchen table. The table is covered with newspapers. On it, LOUIS is putting together a complicated model boat, using glue and tweezers. He's wearing glasses.

ELLIE comes in, wearing a nightgown. She watches him for awhile.

LOUIS (not looking around) Hi, babe.

ELLIE Daddy, that Pet Sematary is there because of the road, isn't it?

LOUIS looks around at her, surprised.

ELLIE That's what I think. I heard Missy Dandridge tell Mom when Church was fixed he wouldn't cross the road so much.

LOUIS Well, it's always better to take precautions--but I'm sure Church will be all right, honey...

INT. JUST OUTSIDE THE KITCHEN DOOR

RACHEL is coming along with some dirty dishes. She hears voices and stops, listening, her face troubled and afraid.

ELLIE (voice) No he won't! Not in the end! He won't be all right in the end no matter how you fix 'im!

INT. LOUIS AND ELLIE

Ellis has started to cry.

ELLIE In the end he's gonna croak, isn't he?

LOUIS Lovey...Church might be still alive when you're in a high school...and that's a very long time.

ELLIE It doesn't seem long to me. It seems short. I think the whole thing about pets dying s-s-sucks!

Poor kid's bawling her eyes out now. LOUIS folds her into his arms and she hugs him tightly, wanting his comfort.

LOUIS If it was up to me I'd let Church live to be a hundred...but I don't make up the rules.

ELLIE (muffled) Well who does? God, I suppose. But he's not God's cat! He's my cat! Let God get His own, if He wants one! Not mine! Not mine! Not--

She breaks down completely, sobbing, and LOUIS rocks her back and forth.

INT. THE HALLWAY OUTSIDE THE KITCHEN, WITH RACHEL

She is crying silently.

INT. ELLIE'S BEDROOM NIGHT

She is a dimly perceived hump in the darkness. An oblong shaft of light falls on her, illuminating her more clearly. She's asleep with her teddy encircled by one arm and her thumb corked into her mouth.

INT. THE DOORWAY, WITH RACHEL

RACHEL looks at her daughter with infinite love and then quietly closes the door.

INT. LOUIS'S AND RACHEL'S BEDROOM NIGHT

LOUIS is in his pajamas, propped up on pillows on his side of the bed. There a number of medical books scattered around him and he's making notes from one as RACHEL comes in.

RACHEL She's finally asleep.

LOUIS She was a little over-excited, that's all. Poor kid.

RACHEL It was that place. That creepy cemetery up in the woods. Whatever disease the kids in this town have got, I don't want Ellie to catch it.

LOUIS Jesus, Rachel, what's got into you?

RACHEL Do you think I didn't hear her tonight, crying as if her heart would break? Here she is thinking Church is going to die.

It should be clear to us by now that, despite her words, RACHEL is much more upset than ELLIE was. LOUIS slowly puts his notebook aside and caps his pen.

LOUIS Rachel...someday Church is going to die.

RACHEL (whirls on him) That is hardly the point! Church is not going to die today, or tomorrow-- Never mind. I can see you don't have the slightest idea what I'm talking about.

She stalks to the bathroom, which adjoins. LOUIS follows. She goes in and slams the door. He goes for the knob.

LOUIS Rachel--!

SOUND: CLICK OF THE LOCK.

LOUIS stares at the door, bewildered and upset.

EXT. ROUTE 9 NIGHT

Here comes a big Orinco truck, droning along, headlights glaring.

INT. LOUIS'S AND RACHEL'S BEDROOM

The headlights of the truck illuminate the room and we see LOUIS and RACHEL asleep, each as far over to his/her own side as he/she can get, with a big empty space in the middle.

Lights and TRUCK SOUNDS slowly fade.

INT. GAGE MORNING

Cheerful little clots of scrambled eggs are scattered all the way across the tray of his high-chair--it looks a little like a map of the Pacific islands done by a guy who only had a yellow crayon. Now he scoops up a handful and throws them.

INT. THE KITCHEN TABLE, WITH ELLIE

Splat! Eggs on the serving plate of toast.

ELLIE Yee-uck! Gross!

INT. THE KITCHEN, A WIDER SHOT

RACHEL is at the sink, doing dishes (we see the blackboard with its message near her).

LOUIS comes in, wearing a sport-coat and slacks, ready for his first day on the job...and ELLIE is in a pretty first day of school dress.

LOUIS He can't help it, babe. Emily Post is going to be beyond him for a few years.

INT. BY THE KITCHEN DOOR

Here is the cat-carrier with CHURCH inside it. He waows unhappily.

INT. THE KITCHEN TABLE, WITH ELLIE AND GAGE

ELLIE gets down and goes across to the cat-carrier.

ELLIE I don't want him to get his nuts cut, daddy! What if he dies?

INT. RACHEL AND LOUIS, BY THE SINK

LOUIS looks shocked and amused by ELLIE'S colorful choice of words.

LOUIS Good God! Where'd you hear that?

INT. ELLIE

ELLIE Missy Dandridge. And she says it's a operation!

INT. RACHEL AND LOUIS, BY THE SINK

LOUIS tries to kiss RACHEL'S mouth. She turns her head slightly so he gets her cheek instead. She's still mad. LOUIS'S amusement dies.

RACHEL Honey, Church will be fine.

INT. ELLIE, BY THE CAT CARRIER

ELLIE But what if he dies and has to go to the Pet Sematary?

INT. LOUIS AND RACHEL, BY THE SINK

She gives him a look as if to say: "There! Now do you understand what you did?"

RACHEL Don't be silly. Church is not going to die.

LOUIS According to what Mr. Crandall says, the road's a lot more dangerous than the operation. Church will be just the same. Well--almost the same--and we won't have to worry about him getting turned into catburgers by one of those damn Orinco trucks.

At this RACHEL tightens up still more in that funny way--she's actually angered by LOUIS'S reference to catburgers--but under the anger we sense she is deeply shocked, as a prudish woman might be shocked by a dirty joke. For RACHEL, that's just what death is.

RACHEL That's enough of that kind of talk!

LOUIS I just said--

RACHEL I know what you just said. Ellie, clear your place.

ELLIE goes slowly back to the table.

ELLIE (sets the plate down) I'm scared. What if school here isn't like in Chicago! I'm scared and I want to go h-h-home!

ELLIE bursts into loud tears and puts her hands over her face.

INT. THE KITCHEN, A NEW ANGLE (FEATURES LOUIS AND RACHEL)

THE CAMERA FOLLOWS as they go to the table to comfort ELLIE.

RACHEL You'll be fine, Ellie. Now you can be excused. Go and wash your face.

LOUIS And Church will be fine.

ELLIE (anxious) Do you promise, Daddy?

LOUIS Well, honey...you know that...

RACHEL Don't shilly-shally, Louis. Give the little girl her promise.

LOUIS (reluctantly) Church will be fine. I promise.

ELLIE Yayyyy!

She runs off, cheered up. And RACHEL is cheered up, too.

RACHEL Thank you, Louis.

LOUIS Oh, you're welcome. Only if some- thing should go wrong while he's under the gas--it's a one-in-a-thousand shot, but it happens--you explain to her.

He gets up and leaves the table. She looks after him, stunned and a little frightened.

INT. GAGE

GAGE (conversationally) Here, Durch!

He picks up a large glob of scrambled eggs from his tray and throws it in the direction of the cat-carrier.

INT. THE CAT-CARRIER

CHURCH is close to the mesh, looking out. Scrambled eggs hit the mesh, driving him back, surprised.

EXT. THE CREED HOUSE MORNING

The school bus pulls up, red lights flashing. ELLIE runs toward it across the lawn, with her lunch-box.

EXT. LOUIS, RACHEL, AND GAGE, IN THE FRONT DOORWAY

RACHEL Have a great day!

LOUIS grabs GAGE'S hand and makes him wave it.

GAGE Bye-bye!

EXT. THE BUS

ELLIE climbs aboard. The red flashers go out and the bus pulls away.

EXT. THE CREED DRIVEWAY MORNING

The station wagon is parked there. LOUIS comes out with a heavy briefcase in one hand and the cat-carrier in the other. He opens the wagon's doorgate.

A small car turns into the CREED driveway and parks beside LOUIS. A rather sour-looking middle-aged woman gets out and crosses the front of her car. Her color is bad. This is MISSY DANDRIDGE. She looks at the cat-carrier.

MISSY Gonna get his--

LOUIS --nuts cut, yes. Thank you, Missy, for introducing that colorful phrase into my daughter's vocabulary.

MISSY Don't mention it.

She opens the passenger side door of her car and we see a big neat pile of folded sheets. She reaches for them, then winces and presses her hands against her midriff for a moment, as if with an attack of indigestion.

LOUIS (sees this) How's that belly-ache of yours?

MISSY (gets the sheets) No better and no worse.

LOUIS You ought to see a doctor about it.

MISSY It'll pass. They always do.

She starts toward the house with the sheets.

EXT. THE SIDE YARD MORNING

RACHEL hurries past MISSY, who turns to look and then goes on into the house. LOUIS has just put the cat-carrier into the back of the wagon and closed the doorgate as RACHEL reaches him.

RACHEL (anxious) Still friends, doc?

LOUIS appears to consider this seriously for a moment...and then he smiles and hugs her. They kiss.

RACHEL Thank God. I was a little worried there. Have a great first day at school, doc. No broken bones.

LOUIS (smiles) Not so much as a sprain.

EXT. VICTOR PASCOW AND FRIENDS MORNING

PASCOW is in a blanket that is being carried by three boys and one girl. They are all yelling at each other not to joggle him, not to drop him. A small knot of horrified college kids moves with the bearers.

PASCOW'S head is upside down to the CAMERA, which retreats ahead of the advancing students. Fixed eyes stare. Half of his head has been shattered inward. Before the catastrophe he was a husky male of about twenty. He's dressed in a U of M muscle shirt and red jogging shorts.

THE CAMERA PULLS JERKILY TO ONE SIDE, allowing the bearers to mount the steps of a brick building. The infirmary. The lookers-on break to either side. The infirmary doors open.

EXT.. NURSE CHARLTON, AT THE DOORS

She's the head nurse, a tough old babe of about fifty.

CHARLTON Holy Jesus. (turns) Steve! Steve! Dr. Creed! Dr. Creed, we've got a mess here! Stat!

The bearers sweep past her and inside, leaving a red smear of blood across the midriff of MARCY CHARLTON'S uniform.

INT. THE INFIRMARY RECEPTION AREA

THE CAMERA will show us all we need to see, but its movements will seem almost random; this is like being in the hotel kitchen after Sirhan shot Bobby.

As the students bring in PASCOW, LOUIS comes running, followed by STEVE MASTERTON, his P.A. Standing to one side are two student nurses in candystriper uniforms. They're boggled and horrified.

LOUIS kneels. THE CAMERA RUSHES FORWARD, shoving between onlookers. LOUIS looks at the wound. There's shattered bone and pulsing brain tissue beneath.

There's a scream; the girl who was carrying one corner of the blanket is having hysterics.

GIRL Vic! Vic! Oh Christ! Vic!

LOUIS (to CHARLTON) Get her out. Get them all out.

CHARLTON puts her arms around the girl.

GIRL (struggling) No! No! He can't die! He can't die!

THE CAMERA MOVES BACK DOWN as LOUIS takes an opthalmascope from STEVE and shines it in PASCOW'S bulging, fixed eyes.

CHARLTON is just pushing the last of them gawkers and bearers out the door.

LOUIS Steve, get the ambulance over here right now. He's got to go to EMMC.

STEVE The ambulance is at Sonny's Sunoco downtown, getting--

LOUIS --a new muffler, oh shit--

PASCOW makes a weird gargling noise. Blood suddenly spurts out of his mouth. He begins to seizure.

One of the candystripers shrieks. THE CAMERA JERKS UP TO COVER the student nurses. One turns and throws up on the wall.

CHARLTON rushes over.

CANDYSTRIPER I can't look at it...I can't stand it...

CHARLTON (slaps her) Yes you by God can. Go get the hard stretcher!

As they start away, one helping the other down the hall, and as CHARLTON starts over to where PASCOW lies dying on his blanket, THE CAMERA DROPS TO LOUIS AND STEVE.

LOUIS Help me hold him.

They hold PASCOW'S spasming body.

STEVE It wouldn't matter if we did have the ambulance.

LOUIS It wouldn't matter if we had the SST.

PASCOW begins to quiet.

LOUIS He's going. Steve, go call the motor- pool. Marcy, roll out the crash wagon.

CHARLTON It won't--

LOUIS I know it won't! But let's for God's sake do it by the rules!

She leaves. LOUIS is alone with PASCOW. CHARLTON has drawn the drapes, so the doctor and the dying man have complete if temporary privacy.

INT. LOUIS AND PASCOW, A CLOSER SHOT

LOIS There wasn't even supposed to be a sprain today, my friend--that's what I told her.

PASCOW'S fixed eyes suddenly roll and his left hand bear-traps LOUIS'S right wrist. The dying man pulls him slowly but relentlessly down, until their faces are only inches apart.

PASCOW ...Pet Sematary...

LOUIS recoils, breaking the grip of the hand...but he cannot quite snap the grip of those bright dying eyes. Blood leaks from PASCOW'S mouth.

LOUIS (whispers) W-What did you say...?

PASCOW struggles hard to speak again. At first he can only gurgle.

PASCOW It's not the real cemetery... (Long pause) The soil of a man's heart is stonier, Louis...a man grows what he can...and tends it.

LOUIS leans forward again, terrified, yet needing to know.

LOUIS How do you know my name?

PASCOW (gurgling) I'll come...to you.

LOUIS grabs PASCOW'S bloody shoulder.

LOUIS (low but urgent) Dammit, how do you know my name?

INT. HALLWAY ENTRANCE TO RECEPTION, WITH STEVE

STEVE Louis, they're sending a--

INT. LOUIS AND PASCOW

PASCOW begins to spasm again.

LOUIS (snaps) Help me!

PASCOW spews more blood as STEVE kneels beside LOUIS.

INT. THE MAIN INFIRMARY HALLWAY

CHARLTON is pushing along your basic MEDCU goodie-cart, covered with emergency life-saving gear.

INT. LOUIS, STEVE, PASCOW

PASCOW'S spasms are weakening.

LOUIS (to CHARLTON) Never mind. He's going.

PASCOW'S hand comes up and paws at LOUIS'S shirt, leaving a bloody handprint. Then it falls limply back. PASCOW is dead.

LOUIS Steve, will you get a sheet to cover him with?

STEVE leaves the frame and LOUIS stares fixedly down at the body of VICTOR PASCOW. He closes the eyes.

EXT. A COUNTRY ROAD, LATE AFTERNOON

It's the leading edge of Maine fall, sunny and wonderful. Here comes LOUIS'S station wagon. As it reaches THE CAMERA, it swivels to TRACK.

RADIO (voice-over) Tragedy struck on the first day of the University of Maine's fall semester when Victor Pascow, a nineteen-year-old sophomore--

INT. THE CAR, WITH LOUIS

He still looks shocked by the tragedy. The dying man's bloody handprint is partly visible on LOUIS'S shirt in spite of his sport-coat.

LOUIS abruptly turns off the radio and swerves over to the side of the road.

EXT. THE STATION WAGON

IT comes to a slueing, shuddering stop, almost going in the ditch.

INT. LOUIS, BEHIND THE WHEEL

LOUIS He said my name. I heard it. He said my name.

He stares blankly through the windshield.

EXT. THE CREED HOUSE NIGHT

All lights are off. It's late.

INT. THE CREED BEDROOM NIGHT

LOUIS and RACHEL are asleep, each on his/her own side of the big double. THE CAMERA MOVES IN ON LOUIS.

SOUND: Loud, hollow BANG. It's very loud--loud enough to wake the dead.

LOUIS sits up. Beside him, RACHEL sleeps on. LOUIS'S eyes widen in terror as he stares at:

INT. THE DOORWAY, WITH PASCOW

He's exquisitely dead. Now pallid as well as smashed up.

PASCOW Come on, doc. We got places to go.

INT. LOUIS

He is in terror...but he is also in a state of near-trance.

INT. PASCOW

PASCOW Come on, doc--don't make me tell you twice.

INT. LOUIS

He glances at RACHEL. Although PASCOW has spoken in a fairly loud voice--and the opening door was like a bomb--she's still fast asleep. LOUIS looks back toward PASCOW...and then gets out of bed. He's naked except for a pair of pajama bottoms.

INT. PASCOW

He turns and leaves the doorway.

INT. LOUIS

He reaches the bedroom doorway himself and looks back at:

INT. THE BED, LOUIS'S POV

RACHEL is sleeping as before, and LOUIS himself is also in bed asleep, although his rest is uneasy...as if he's having a bad dream.

INT. THE DOORWAY, WITH LOUIS

LOUIS (relieved) Oh. Thank God.

PASCOW (Voice) Hurry up, doc.

INT. THE KITCHEN

LOUIS enters and crosses toward the door which gives on the shed/garage. This door stands open. LOUIS pauses by it.

PASCOW (low) Come on, doc...

LOUIS goes into:

INT. THE SHED/GARAGE

The station wagon is a dark hulk. LOUIS crosses to it and stands, perplexed.

PASCOW looms softly behind him and puts an arm around him. LOUIS turns... and suddenly his face is less than an inch from PASCOW'S mutilated face.

PASCOW Let's go, doc.

LOUIS (moans) I don't like this dream.

PASCOW Who said you were dreaming?

He begins to move toward the garage door. After a moment LOUIS follows him.

EXT. THE FIELD BEHIND THE HOUSE, LONG NIGHT

We can see two shapes moving up the path toward the woods--PASCOW and, behind him, LOUIS.

EXT. THE PET SEMATARY ARCH

CAMERA HOLDS, THEN PANS DOWN as LOUIS passes under the arch.

EXT. LOUIS, CLOSE

He looks around, obviously afraid.

EXT. THE PET SEMATARY, LOUIS'S POV

We can see why. By starlight this is one scary place.

EXT. LOUIS

He suddenly sees something else, and now his fear is close to terror.

EXT. THE DEADFALL, LOUIS'S POV

The face is back in the tumbled branches. It yawns and snarls.

EXT. LOUIS

He walks toward the deadfall as if hypnotized. PASCOW'S hand falls on his shoulder. LOUIS turns, terrified.

EXT. PASCOW, CLOSE

He really is a dreadful mangled mess.

PASCOW This is the place where the dead speak.

EXT. LOUIS

He closes his eyes.

LOUIS I want to wake up. I want to wake up, that's all. I--

EXT. LOUIS AND PASCOW

PASCOW The door must not be opened. The barrier must not be crossed. Don't go on, doc. No matter how much you feel you have to. There's more power here than you know.

He points at:

EXT. THE DEADFALL

That grinning face--and perhaps now there are other effects as well, subtle but there? Dim red light? A misty smoke drifting through the tumbled dead branches? The director will know.

After a moment there is a HUGE GRUNTING ROAR from the woods behind the deadfall--it sounds like no animal we've ever heard before. There is the sound of something huge shifting and snapping a tree like a toothpick.

EXT. PASCOW AND LOUIS

LOUIS has crumbled to PASCOW'S feet. His eyes are squeezed tightly shut.

LOUIS Please, I want to wake up. Leave me alone. It's not my fault you died; you were as good as dead when they brought you in--

PASCOW The power of this place is old and always restless. Sometimes the dead do more than speak. Remember, doc.

CAMERA BEGINS MOVING SLOWLY IN ON LOUIS.

LOUIS Leave me alone!

PASCOW Remember.

CAMERA IS TIGHT ON LOUIS.

RADIO (voice) --another beautiful day in Maine! This is Michael O'Hara sayin' that the git-go ain't gonna be that bad. Temps are going all the way up to 70... We got the Ramones for Ludlow...here's "Sheena."

As the Ramones start blasting "Sheena Is A Punk Rocker":

INT. LOUIS, IN BED

His eyes snap open. He's in his own bedroom. As he sits up THE CAMERA ANGLE WIDENS OUT so we can see that he's in bed alone; the covers on RACHEL'S side are thrown back.

After the initial confusion and fear, LOUIS looks deeply relieved; he looks the way I suppose we all look upon waking up and realizing our worst dreams were only dreams after all.

RACHEL (calls) You up, doc?

LOUIS Getting there.

RACHEL I got eggs down here!

LOUIS Good d--

He throws the covers back and freezes.

INT. LOUIS'S FEET, LOUIS'S POV

They are covered with mud and pine needles. The sheets are greased with woods-muck.

INT. LOUIS, CU

Utter terror.

INT. THE LAUNDRY CHUTE, CU

LOUIS'S hands enter the shot and dump a bundle of sheets into the chute.

INT. LOUIS, IN THE UPSTAIRS HALL

He's naked but for a towel around his waist. He's obviously fresh from the shower.

He starts down to the bedroom to dress.

BLACK. And on it a third title card: CHURCH.

Over this the SOUND of a RINGING TELEPHONE.

LOUIS (voice) Hello?

INT. THE CREED LIVING ROOM AFTERNOON

There's a bowling match on TV. LOUIS, dressed in his Saturday afternoon grubs (jeans and a Maine sweatshirt), has the phone to his ear.

JUD CRANDALL (phone filter) Louis? 'Fraid you may have a spot of trouble.

LOUIS (frowning) Jud? What trouble?

INT. THE CRANDALL LIVING ROOM, WITH JUD

He's on the phone, looking out his window.

JUD Did you tell me Rachel took the kids back to Chicago for a few days?

INT. THE CREED LIVING ROOM, WITH LOUIS

LOUIS For Ellie's birthday, yes. I didn't go because her old man thinks I'm a shit and the feeling is heartily re- ciprocated...they'll be back tomorrow night. Jud, what's this about?

INT. THE CRANDALL LIVING ROOM, WITH JUD

JUD Well, there's a dead cat over here on the edge of my lawn, Louis. I think it might be your daughter's.

INT. THE CREED LIVING ROOM, WITH LOUIS

LOUIS Church? Oh. Oh, Jesus.

EXT. THE CRANDALL HOUSE, MEDIUM-LONG

We're looking across from the CREED lawn. LOUIS waits for one of those trucks to go blasting by and then crosses. It's cold and windy. Downed autumn leaves fly.

LOUIS and JUD stand over a small furry body like mourners.

JUD (voice) Well?

EXT. THE CAT'S BODY

It's lying on its belly and doesn't look much damaged. Hands-- LOUIS'S--come into the frame. He puts one hand under the cat's head and lifts it so the open eyes, now a dull green, stare into THE CAMERA. There's some blood on its ruff. That's all.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD, ON THE EDGE OF THE CRANDALL LAWN

LOUIS It's Church.

JUD I'm sorry. At least it don't look like he suffered.

LOUIS Ellie will, though. She'll suffer plenty.

From his jacket pocket he takes a green plastic garbage bag and hands it to JUD. JUD holds the bag's mouth open on the ground while LOUIS kind of shoves the body in. During this:

JUD Loved that cat pretty well, didn't she?

LOUIS Yes.

LOUIS twists the bag shut and puts one of those plastic ties on it. Then he holds it up.

LOUIS Bagged cat. What a mess.

JUD You going to bury him in the Pet Sematary?

LOUIS (a little bitter) I guess that's what it's there for, huh?

During all of this JUD has grown peculiarly intense.

JUD Going to tell Ellie?

LOUIS I don't know.

JUD Seems like you told me about a promise you made--

INT. THE CREED KITCHEN MORNING

GAGE is in his high chair. ELLIE, in her first-day-of-school dress, is in her place. LOUIS is sitting at his own place staring, hypnotized, at the middle of the table, where there is a large serving dish. On the dish is scrambled eggs, strips of bacon, and CHURCH'S corpse--staring eyes, bloody ruff and all.

RACHEL (impatiently) Don't shilly-shally, Louis. Give the little girl her promise.

EXT. THE CRANDALL LAWN, WITH JUD AND LOUIS

LOUIS (defensive) That was a mistake. But Rachel... she doesn't like to talk about death, or even think of it. Her younger sister died of spinal meningitis when Rachel was eight. Rachel was there when it happened. Alone. I guess you could say it made a complex.

JUD Cat's just as dead, Louis.

LOUIS (snaps) Well that's a big help! (Pause) I'm sorry, Jud.

JUD No need to apologize.

LOUIS Maybe when they call I'll just tell Ellie I haven't seen the damn cat around. You know?

JUD (after a long pause) Maybe there's a better way.

EXT. THE START OF THE PATH TO THE PET SEMATARY, LONG EVENING

LOUIS and JUD cross the road from the CRANDALL side. LOUIS is carrying the plastic bag in one hand and a flashlight in the other. JUD has a pick and shovel in one hand and a flashlight of his own in the other.

Evening shadows have grown long. It's maybe an hour until dark.

JUD and LOUIS stop near the replaced tire-swing.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD

JUD has a Walkman clipped to the belt of his pants and earphones slung around his neck.

LOUIS Jud, this is crazy. It's going to be almost dark before we get back.

JUD It's going to be dark before we even get where we're going, Louis. But we can do it...and we're going to.

LOUIS But--

JUD Does she love the cat?

LOUIS Yes, but--

JUD Then come on.

He puts the earphones on, effectively forestalling further argument, and pushes the PLAY button on the Walkman. We can hear Marshall Crenshaw singing "Crystal Girl." JUD starts away. After a moment, LOUIS follows.

EXT. THE PET SEMATARY AND THE BACK OF THE ARCH LATE EVENING

The SOUND of crickets...ree-ree-ree...

The SOUND of footfalls.

Faintly, the SOUND of Huey Lewis and the News, singing "Working For A Living."

It's now almost twilight.

JUD and LOUIS enter the Pet Sematary. LOUIS is looking around curiously.

LOUIS Well, folks, here we are, in Louis Creed Dreamland.

JUD snaps off the Walkman and puts the earphones around his neck again.

JUD What say, Louis?

LOUIS Nothing. (Pause) Do we plant him on the outer circle or start a new one?

JUD We're still not where we're going.

He walks past LOUIS and toward the deadfall. LOUIS follows.

LOUIS What do you mean?

JUD The place we're going is on the other side of that.

He points at the deadfall.

LOUIS We can't climb over that. We'll break our necks!

JUD No. We won't. I have climbed it a time or two before, and I know all the places to step. Just follow me...move easy...don't look down...and don't stop. If you stop, you'll crash through for sure.

LOUIS I'm not climbing that.

JUD Give me the cat. I'll take care of it myself.

He holds out his hand and LOUIS sees the old man means exactly as he says. After a moment he says:

LOUIS Let's go.

JUD starts up one side of the deadfall, and in spite of its snarled tangles, he mounts as easily as a man climbing a flight of stairs. After a few second, LOUIS follows.

LOUIS (low) Thank God my Blue Cross is paid up.

EXT. THEIR FEET

First JUD'S pass THE CAMERA, then LOUIS'S, partly obscured by the swinging cat-bag. Their feet unerringly find the right branches and just as unerringly miss holes which look like ankle-breakers.

EXT. LOUIS

He's grinning, exhilarated.

LOUIS God, this is amazing!

EXT. JUD

There are beads of sweat on the old man's face. He looks both stern and a little scared.

JUD Just don't stop and--

EXT. LOUIS

He looks down.

EXT. LOUIS'S FEET

A dead branch snaps under one of them like a gunshot and that foot plunges down maybe six inches.

EXT. LOUIS

He lurches to the edge of balance, then regains it.

LOUIS And don't look down. Right.

He continues.

EXT. THE DEADFALL, REVERSE TWILIGHT

JUD reaches the top and starts down the far side. LOUIS reaches the top.

EXT. LOUIS

LOUIS (amazed) Holy...!

EXT. BIG GOD WOODS, LOUIS'S POV

In the dying glow of twilight, this should be a mystic, awe- inspiring shot. There's no more scrub underbrush and junk pines and juniper-bracken here; ancient firs rise almost like Sequoias. The sunset light shafts among them. This is a real forest... an old forest. And winding upward among the trees along that needle- carpeted floor, clearly marked by large white stones, the path goes on.

EXT. LOUIS

He's stopped on top of the deadfall, still surveying all this with frank amazement.

EXT. JUD

JUD (turns to look) Come on, Louis--don't stop!

EXT. LOUIS, ATOP THE DEADFALL

LOUIS (grinning) I'm all right! I'm f--

EXT. LOUIS'S FEET

One of the branches snaps. LOUIS'S foot plunges. His cuff rips.

EXT. LOUIS, JUD'S POV

We're looking up at a fairly steep angle as LOUIS staggers off- balance. He steps with his other foot, misses, and goes flying.

EXT. LOUIS, CLOSER

He does a half-somersault in the air and hits the deadfall on his back, the green garbage bag flying out of his hand. His flashlight also goes. Branches crack. White dust puffs out from under him.

EXT. JUD, AT THE BASE OF THE DEADFALL

LOUIS thumps to the ground nearby. JUD kneels beside him.

JUD Louis! You all right?

LOUIS sits up groggily. His pants are torn. His sweatshirt is torn. His ankle is bleeding.

LOUIS (dazed) Sure. I guess I just lost my happy thoughts for a second there.

LOUIS gets slowly up and retrieves the bag, which is rather shredded now--and we can see catfur through some of the rents.

LOUIS (continues) I shouldn't have stopped...and it does bite.

He whaps the flashlight against his palm a time or two and the light comes on. Satisfied, he shuts it off.

JUD No, you shouldn't have stopped. But you got away with it. Important thing is are you sure you're all right?

LOUIS Yes. (Pause) Where are we going, Jud?

JUD You'll see before long. Let's go.

He starts off up the path. After a moment LOUIS follows, carrying the bag.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD, FROM THE DEADFALL

Again, there should be a sense of awe and mystery as they go tolling up the path into the twilight, dwarfed by those ancient firs.

SOUND OF CRICKETS, LOW at first, then UP TO LOUD: Ree-ree-ree...

DISSOLVE TO:

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD, AT THE EDGE OF LITTLE GOD SWAMP TWILIGHT

Lots of undergrowth here, and creeping ground-mist, too. The SOUND OF CRICKETS is now only a part of the soundtrack: BUZZ OF CICADAS, THUMP OF FROGS. Swamp-sounds.

LOUIS looks frankly doubtful.

JUD This next bit's like the deadfall, Louis-- you got to walk steady and easy. Just follow me and don't look down.

EXT. LITTLE GOD SWAMP, LOUIS'S AND JUD'S POV DEEP TWILIGHT

Mysterious...awesome...scary. Dead trees poke out of the murk like twisted hands. There's scummy water standing around tussocks covered with long grass, most of it dead. There's a lot of choking underbrush.

All of this fades away into a grim, obscuring fog.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD

JUD Micmacs used to call it Little God Swamp.

LOUIS Is there quicksand?

JUD Ayuh.

LOUIS (nervous; joking) Are there ghosts?

JUD looks at him expressionlessly.

JUD Ayuh.

JUD starts off, stepping to the first tussock. After a moment, LOUIS follows.

EXT. JUD, CU

His face is set, strange.

JUD There's a lot of funny things down this way, Louis.

EXT. LOUIS, BEHIND JUD

LOUIS You're telling me.

EXT. JUD

JUD (still walking) The air's heavier...more electrical... something. You might see St. Elmo's Fire...what the sailors call 'foo-lights.' It makes funny shapes, but it's nothing.

EXT. LOUIS

HE looks up and his eyes widen as he sees:

EXT. ANGLE ON LITTLE GOD SWAMP, LOUIS'S POV

A faintly glowing, ethereal shape hangs in the branches of one of the dead trees. It looks a bit like a corpse. In fact, I think it looks quite a bit like PASCOW'S corpse.

As we watch it fades...fades...is gone.

EXT. LOUIS

He's somewhere between being mystified and puzzled and being scared. Now a weakly glowing fireball rolls slowly across the surface of the standing water toward him...and then just fades into the thick mist.

LOUIS It's funny, all right.

EXT. JUD

JUD Just don't stop, Louis. You don't ever want to stop down here in Little God. (Pause) And you don't ever want to look behind you, whatever you hear.

EXT. JUD AND LOUIS, LONG ANGLE NIGHT

We see them moving through the mist like wraiths, JUD with his digging tools, LOUIS with his light and his Hefty-Bag coffin. The whole swamp is glowing dimly.

EXT. THE FAR SIDE OF LITTLE GOD SWAMP NIGHT

In the extreme f.g. we can see firm ground sloping up. Ahead is a thick white mist. And here comes JUD and LOUIS slogging through it and out of it. Both of them are wet from the knees down. They head into the woods on the far side.

EXT. A LOW, STONY BLUFF OR STEEP HILL

In the book this is described as being almost a cliff, but a rocky hill rising out of the woods would serve just as well. We can see steps cut into the side, and two figures--LOUIS and JUD--toiling up them.

EXT. JUD AND LOUIS, A CLOSER SHOT

JUD'S panting and out of breath; LOUIS is, if anything, in worse shape.

JUD Almost there, Louis.

LOUIS You keep saying that.

JUD This time I mean it.

He tops the last step and stands on a rocky level under the stars, the wind blowing his hair off his deeply lined brow. A few moments later LOUIS joins him and stares with undisguised wonder.

EXT. THE MICMAC BURYING GROUND, LOUIS AND JUD'S POV

The top of this hill or bluff is rocky and bare, but there are a number of rocky piles. But for every pile of rocks we can see, there are ten littered heaps, as if the neat piles had been burst apart. There's a shape to all of this, and it is the shape of the Pet Sematary: concentric circles.

SOUND: The wind, blowing ceaselessly.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD, AT THE EDGE OF THE BURYING GROUND

LOUIS (awed) What is this place?

JUD This was their burying ground, Louis.

LOUIS Whose burying ground?

JUD The Micmac Indians. I brought you here to bury Ellen's cat.

LOUIS Why? For God's sake, why?

JUD I had my reasons, Louis. We'll talk later. All right?

LOUIS I guess so...but...

JUD You want to rest a bit before you start?

LOUIS No, I'm okay. Will I really be able to dig him a grave? The soil looks thin.

JUD Soil's thin, all right. But you'll manage.

He hands him the pick and shovel.

JUD I'm going to sit over yonder and have a smoke. I'd help you, but you've got to do it yourself. Each buries his own. That's how it was done then.

JUD walks away, leaving LOUIS with the digging tools in one hand and the flashlight in the other. After a minute, LOUIS walks out into the burying ground.

EXT. LOOKING DOWN INTO A SHALLOW HOLE NIGHT

SOUND: The wind. It blows ceaselessly up here.

The hole's about two and a half feet deep. Stubby rocks protrude from the sides. The pick comes down, hits a rock at the bottom, and flashes fire.

EXT. LOUIS

He drops the pick and sticks his hurt hands in his armpits. Beside him we see a low pile of rocks and earth.

JUD (voice) Should be deep enough.

He joins LOUIS. He's got a lot of rocks in his arms.

LOUIS You think so?

He notices the rocks.

LOUIS What are those for?

JUD Your cairn.

EXT. THE MICMAC BURYING GROUND, LOUIS'S POV

Those tumbled piles of rock are very obvious.

EXT. LOUIS AND JUD, BY CHURCH'S GRAVE

LOUIS Doesn't look like they last long.

JUD Don't worry about that.

LOUIS Jud, why am I doing all this?

JUD Because it's right.

He walks off again.

LOUIS looks after him for a moment, then kneels down.

EXT. LOUIS, BY THE GARBAGE BAG

He opens it and looks in at CHURCH'S stiffening corpse.

LOUIS Pax vobiscum, Church old buddy. You were a hell of a god cat. I doubt if you were worth all this aggravation, but you were a hell of a good cat.

He tumbles the bag containing the body into the grave, and then begins pushing the stony soil over it with the spade.

EXT. THE CAIRN, CU NIGHT

LOUIS'S hands come into the frame and add a final two or three stones.

EXT. LOUIS, BY THE CAIRN

He looks at it for a moment and stands up. JUD is right there.

JUD That's fine. You did real good.

LOUIS looks at him.

EXT. THE CREED HOUSE NIGHT

There's a light on in the kitchen, but that's all. There's silence at first, and then the PHONE STARTS RINGING.

EXT. LOUIS'S FIELD NIGHT

LOUIS and JUD are coming down the path with their tools and their lights. They are both clearly fagged out.

SOUND, FAINT: The telephone.

LOUIS Oh, shit! Rachel!

He drops the tools and sprints.

EXT. THE CREED'S SIDE YARD, BY THE TIRE SWING

LOUIS runs into the side yard. SOUND of the phone is louder.

EXT. THE KITCHEN DOOR OF THE CREED HOUSE, WITH LOUIS

He runs to the door and inside.

EXT. THE END OF THE PATH, WITH JUD

He stands there, eyes inscrutable.

INT. THE LIVING ROOM, WITH THE PHONE

It stops. A beat later LOUIS enters the room. He picks it up, although he already knows it's too late. He listens to the SOUND of the dial tone and then drops it back into the cradle, disgusted.

He starts to dial a number from memory.

JUD (voice) Louis.

INT. THE KITCHEN/LIVING ROOM DOORWAY, WITH JUD

JUD When you talk to 'em, not one word about what we done tonight. 'S'far's you know, the cat's still fine.

INT. LOUIS, BY THE PHONE

After a moment he lowers it into the cradle.

INT. JUD

JUD You'll understand. In the meantime, keep your peace. What we did, Louis, was a secret thing. Women are supposed to be the ones who are good at keeping secrets, but any woman who knows anything at all would tell you she's never seen into a man's heart. The soil of a man's heart is stonier, Louis--like the soil up there in the old Micmac burying ground. A man grows what he can...and tends it.

During this, he's come across the room to LOUIS and dropped his hand on LOUIS'S shoulder.

LOUIS But--

JUD No buts! Accept what's done, Louis. What we done was right. Another time it might not be, but tonight it was... at least I hope to Christ it was. Now you make your call...but not a word about tonight.

EXT. THE ROAD, WITH JUD

SOUNDS: Boops and beeps of a touch-tone telephone. Ringing. Then:

DORY GOLDMAN (voice) Goldman residence.

LOUIS Hi, Dory...it's Louis--

During this, another SOUND has been growing: an approaching truck. As JUD gains his side of the road, he looks back, and we read fear on his face--no matter what he said to LOUIS, he's sorry for tonight's piece of work.

A moment later a highballing Orinco truck cuts between THE CAMERA and JUD.

INT. LOUIS, IN THE LIVING ROOM NIGHT

He's on the phone, smiling and happy.

RACHEL (voice) You want to talk to the birthday girl?

LOUIS That'd be real fine.

ELLIE (voice) Hi...daddy?

LOUIS (sings) Happy birthday to you/Happy birthday to you/Happy birthday, dear Ellie/Happy birthday to you!

ELLIE (voice) That was awful, daddy.

LOUIS Yeah, I know...how are things out there in Chicagoland?

ELLIE Fine...except when Mom was airing Gage's diaper rash, he walked away and got into Grampa's study and pooped in Grampa's favorite chair.

LOUIS (grinning broadly) Way to go, Gage!

ELLIE (voice) What?

LOUIS I said that's too bad. What did you get for presents from Gramma and Grampa?

ELLIE (voice) Lots of stuff! I got two dresses...and a Chatty Cathy doll...

INT. THE GOLDMAN LIVING ROOM, WITH ELLIE

She's dressed for bed, in fuzzy pink pajamas. Her Chatty Cathy is crooked in one arm. In her lap is a Garfield transistor radio.

ELLIE ...and a Garfield radio! How's Church, dad? Does he miss me?

INT. THE CREED LIVING ROOM, WITH LOUIS

The smile fades off his face. It's replaced with a look of combined guilt and unhappiness. He's looking at his hands, which are still dark with the dirt from CHURCH'S grave.

LOUIS Well...I guess he's just fine, Ellie. I haven't seen him this evening, but--

INT. THE GOLDMAN LIVING ROOM, WITH ELLIE

RACHEL, holding GAGE, sits on the arm of ELLIE'S chair.

ELLIE Well, make sure you put him down cellar before you go to bed so he can't run out in the road and get greased. And kiss him goodnight for me.

LOUIS (voice) Yuck! Kiss your own cat!

ELLIE Want to talk to Gage?

Before he can answer, she puts the phone in GAGE'S hand. ELLIE and RACHEL watch, amused, as GAGE gobbles into it. Perhaps RACHEL encourages him to say a few words.

INT. THE CREED LVING ROOM, WITH LOUIS

From the telephone comes the sound of GAGE talking and chortling. LOUIS is not listening. His eyes--and his mind--are far away.

EXT. THE CREED HOUSE MORNING

LOUIS is raking leaves on the side lawn, near the tree with the tire swing. After a moment or two of this he props the rake against the tree and starts toward the garage. He goes in.

EXT. THE GARAGE, WITH LOUIS

It's dim in here. LOUIS is crossing to the door which communicates to the kitchen. As he passes the station wagon, he hears a cat HISS. He turns.

INT. CHURCH, ECU

He's on top of the car, but at this point we probably don't notice; THE CAMERA is so close that CHURCH looks like he's coming right down our throats. He's hissing angrily.

INT. LOUIS

He recoils and stumbles backward with a cry. He hits a tool-rack on the wall and a lot of them fall down with a LOUD JANGLING NOISE.

INT. ON TOP OF THE STATION WAGON, WITH CHURCH

He jumps down, frightened by the noise, and the CAMERA TRACKS as he goes flying out the garage door into the sunlight.

INT. LOUIS

He gets slowly to his feet again. He's getting over his fright but we can see he's totally freaked out by what gave him that fright. He goes to the garage door and looks out.

LOUIS (calls) Church?

EXT. THE SIDE YARD, LOUIS'S POV

Grass and fallen leaves. No sign of CHURCH.

EXT. LOUIS'S STUNNED FACE, CU

INT. THE KITCHEN, WITH LOUIS

He's spooning cat-food into a dish. He goes to the door--there should be a total of three doors in the kitchen: one to the living room, one to the shed/garage, and one which leads directly outside. LOUIS uses this latter door now.

EXT. THE KITCHEN STOOP, WITH LOUIS

He puts the dish of food down and sits beside it.

LOUIS Food, Church...food!

SOUND: Miaow.

EXT. THE SIDE OF THE HOUSE, LOUIS'S POV

CHURCH comes slinking out of the bushes and comes slowly toward THE CAMERA. He stops, looking mistrustful.

EXT. LOUIS

LOUIS Come on, Church! Chow down!

EXT. CHURCH

He crosses to the stoop and begins eating the food.

LOUIS (to himself) Christ. I don't believe this.

He picks CHURCH up. CHURCH miaows again--he wants the food.

LOUIS (wincing) God, you stink, Church.

CHURCH is looking at the food, trying to get out of LOUIS'S arms.

LOUIS In a second.

He tilts the cat's head back so he can get a look at CHURCH'S neck.

EXT. CHURCH'S NECK, CU (LOUIS'S POV)

There's some sort of mark here--a clear remnant of the crash. A line of white fur, or perhaps a dark red scar where no fur at all grows.

EXT. LOUIS AND CHURCH, ON THE STOOP

LOUIS sees something else as he lets the cat's neck go. He tweezes something out of CHURCH'S whiskers.

EXT. LOUIS'S HAND, ECU

It's a shred of green plastic.

EXT. LOUIS AND CHURCH

LOUIS Chewed his way out. Jesus Baldheaded Christ, he ch--

CHURCH suddenly claws at his face.

LOUIS Ow!

He claps his hand to his face. CHURCH leaps for the food. LOUIS slowly takes his hand away. There are claw marks on his cheek, welling blood. He looks at the cat.

EXT. JUD CRANDALL'S GARDEN, WITH JUD

The garden is a plot of about half an acre. JUD comes trundling slowly along a row, pushing a wheelbarrow. There are several pumpkins in it. JUD is wearing old khaki gardening pants and a Ramones sweatshirt. He's wearing his headphones and we can hear the Romantics doing "What I Like About You." JUD is singing along and bopping a little--as much as his arthritis will allow, if you can dig it.

He sees a real big pumpkin, stops, and bends over to get it.

He takes out his pocket-knife and slits the pumpkin-vine. He gets the pumpkin in his arms and stands up. He turns...and LOUIS is right there (kind of a cheap jump, but always fun), looking totally stunned.

JUD, startled, drops the pumpkin. LOUIS reaches out and slides the phones off JUD'S ears.

LOUIS What did we do?

INT. THE CRANDALL KITCHEN

LOUIS is sitting at the kitchen table. JUD is at the fridge. JUD comes back with a couple of long-necked bottles of beer and opens them.

JUD I most generally don't start before noon, but this looks like an exception.

LOUIS What did we do, Jud?

JUD Why, saved a little girl from being unhappy...that's all. Drink up, Louis!

LOUIS drinks about half the beer.

LOUIS I tried to tell myself I buried him alive. You know--Edgar Allan Poe meets Felix the Cat. But...

JUD Wouldn't wash?

LOUIS No. I'm a doctor. I know death when I see it, and Church was dead. He smells horrible and he uses his claws, but he's alive...and I feel like I'm going crazy. It was that place, wasn't it?

JUD Ayuh. It was the rag-man told me about the place--Stanley Bouchard. Us kids just called him Stanny B. He was half Micmac himself.

LOUIS drains his beer.

LOUIS Can I have another one?

JUD I guess it wouldn't hurt.

He gets up and goes to the fridge.

INT. JUD, AT THE FRIDGE

JUD The Micmacs used to bury their dead up there long before the whites came.

He returns to the table with the beer.

JUD They buried their dead and for a long time their dead stayed buried. Then something happened. Half the tribe died in a season. The rest moved on. They said a Wendigo had soured the ground.

LOUIS Wendigo?

JUD Spirit of the north country. Not a good spirit. Wendigos are great liars and tricksters, according to the stories. And if one touches you...

JUD pauses, perhaps a flustered, and gathers his thoughts.

JUD Maybe it really was a Wendigo-- I ain't the one to say it wasn't-- or maybe it was just some disease. Whatever the reason, those that were left moved on. But they left that place...the way it is now.

JUD shrugs, and drinks.

EXT. JUD AS A BOY, CU/SEPIA TONE DAY

The time here is about 1910. JUD is wearing short pants. He's crying, not in any big-deal histrionic way, but as if he means to keep doing it for a long time. I mean he looks really sad.

JUD (voice) I loved my dog a lot, Louis. When Spot died, I thought I was gonna die.

JUD is sitting on the front stoop. It's the same house JUD lives in now, but the porch hasn't been added yet, and the road is dirt rather than tar.

Along this road comes a horse-drawn wagon--STANNY B.'S wagon. The wagon's full of junk, rags, bottles...stuff to sell and swap. Strung across the top are bells, and we can hear their CHIMING SOUND...but faint, like bells heard in a dream.

STANNY B. is old and drunk. Dust spumes up behind the wagon as he draws up to the CRANDALL house and stops. He gets down, almost falls, takes a bottle out of his back pocket, drinks, and approaches JUD. We can see him speaking.

INT. JUD'S KITCHEN, WITH JUD AND LOUIS

LOUIS You and this old Indian rag-man--

JUD Stanny B. did for me what I did for you last night, Louis. Only I wasn't alone when Spot came back.

EXT. THE CRANDALL BACK YARD/SEPIA TONE DAY

JUD'S MOTHER is back to THE CAMERA, hanging sheets on the line. The sheets billow. And suddenly, pushing out from behind them, quite near her, is a small mongrel dog. SPOT. He's covered with graveyard dirt. His eyes are red and rolling. He splashes the sheets with the muck of his passage.

JUD (voice) My mother was with me.

She sees who it is--what it is--and backs away, screaming, horrified.

EXT. SPOT, CLOSER/SEPIA

JUD (voice) He'd got caught in bobwire that infected. You could still see the marks on him.

And so we can, around his neck and along the side of his head. These marks are the counterpart of the marks we've already seen on CHURCH.

SOUND of JUD'S MOM SCREAMING. Like the bells, these are screams heard in a dream.

EXT. THE BACK STOOP OF THE CRANDALL HOUSE/SEPIA

The BOY JUD comes running out, dressed in a night-shirt.

EXT. JUD'S MOM/SEPIA (JUD'S POV)

She's cringing against the fence at the rear of the yard. SPOT stands in front of her, swaying from side to side, as if doped.

JUD'S MOM (dim; far) Get your dog, Jud! He stinks of the ground you buried him in! Come here and get your dog!

She is in utter terror.

EXT. THE BOY JUD/SEPIA

Horrified...ashamed.

EXT. JUD'S MOM/SEPIA

JUD'S MOM (terror) COME AND GET YOUR DOG!!

INT. JUD AND LOUIS, IN JUD'S KITCHEN

LOUIS How did your mother take it, Jud? How did she take it when your dog came back from the dead?

JUD'S face is a complication. He's lying to LOUIS, certainly--but is he also lying to himself? Yes, I think so.

JUD Well, she was a little upset at first, and that's why I thought you ought to hold your peace when you talked to your people last night...you did, didn't you, Louis?

LOUIS Yes.

JUD Why, then, things should be fine.

LOUIS A little upset is all she was? Because I'll tell you, Jud, my brains feel a little like a nuclear reactor on the edge of a meltdown.

JUD She got used to the idea. Spot lived another four years. He died peacefully in the night that second time, and I buried him in the Pet Sematary...where his bones still lie.

EXT. THE ROAD BETWEEN THE TWO HOUSES, WITH LOUIS AND JUD

We see them crossing.

LOUIS (voice) You still haven't told me why you did it.

EXT. JUD AND LOUIS, ON THE CREED FRONT LAWN

JUD A man doesn't always know why he does things, Louis. I think I did it because your daughter ain't ready for her favorite pet to die.

LOUIS What?

JUD Ellie's a little scared of death. And the main reason Ellie's that way is because your wife is a lot scared of death. Now you just go ahead and tell me I'm wrong.

But LOUIS'S reaction tells him he's not wrong--in fact, JUD has hit the nail right on the head.

INT. BATHTUB FIXTURES, CU

LOUIS'S hands come into the frame and turn the spigots.

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I/ Pet Sematary I.
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