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Headless Chicken or

An Everyday story

by Rachit Agarwal

EXT. STREETS - PRESENT

Numerous BIRDS looking down from their high perches at the scene unfolding below. What is it?

An ANGRY MOB is attacking a MAN, while a POLICEMAN stands at the side, looking on, doing nothing. We can't make out who or how many people are attacking who, but from the sounds, we can just about make out a man being beaten up by a mob.

INTERCUT:

INT. BUTCHER'S SHOP

CHICKENS, in their CAGES, beating around in an agitated way, trying to escape.

[TITLE]

INT. ELEVATOR - PRESENT

It's a drab, unadorned elevator, with cold white light and teal-ish walls.

A woman, in her mid 20's. Slightly fair, dressed in a RED GOLF SHIRT and JEANS. We'll call her GIRL. She's a quintessential metropolitan girl, full of joie de vivre, complete with that mischievous twinkle in her eye.

Right now, Girl's standing in the far corner of the lift, head bowed, listening to her IPOD. We can just about make out that the song is Led Zeppelin's STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN.

The door of the elevator's closing, when suddenly, at the last moment, someone jumps in. This is GUY.

Guy's huffing a bit. He's dressed in a CHECK SHIRT and JEANS with ADIDAS ORIGINALS. He has a slight stubble, and hair stuck on his head seemingly with too much gel. A perfect example of a small town, first generation millionaire, he has a well built body from hours in the akhada. Seemingly charming and innocent, he hides a much darker, more aggressive and resentful side, seemingly a product of never quite measuring up to his akhada friends and his father's new-found influence. Nothing brings out the clash between these two opposing forces more strongly than the presence of a woman.

The door bangs shut behind Guy. He turns towards the control panel and presses a button, and suddenly the elevator lurches to a stop. Guy bangs his fist against a wall of the elevator.

(CONTINUED)

2.

CONTINUED:

GUY

I knew I should have taken the stairs!

Girl has seemingly not noticed any of this, and is still listening to her music.

Guy looks at her from the corner of his eye.

The only sound we can hear in the stillness is that which is corning from Girl's iPod.

Guy turns towards her and-

GUY (CONT'D) Hey Led Zeppelin!

Girl's still engrossed in her music.

Guy's just staring at her, waiting for her to answer, unsure whether she's blowing him off or just hasn't heard him.

Girl suddenly looks up, and-

GIRL (doubtful)

Yes?

GUY

Ah ... I was just saying, isn't that Stairway to Heaven?

GIRL Nice one, Sherlock.

GUY

It's just funny how I was just thinking that I should have taken the stairs and you ...

Girl gives an involuntary laugh.

GIRL

Wow. You really do suck at this.

GUY

Aah ... I'm just a little nervous right now, that's all.

GIRL Nervous? You don't have claustrophobia, do you?

GUY

No no no. I'm just getting a bit too late for a meeting.

(CONTINUED)

CONTINUED: (2)

GIRL

Ooh meeting. So where might the knights of the round table be meeting today?

GUY Aah ... the basement.

GIRL

The basement? That doesn't seem too hospitable.

GUY

Aah ... yeah. It's the best we could do. Sor-

GIRL

oh by the way, this lift's going up. You really should have taken the stairs!

GUY Damnit. I can't be late!

GIRL

Relax. And if you can't there's always Zeppelin.

GUY

It's a pity how they never tour India.

GIRL

They don't tour anymore. They split, you idiot.

GUY

Yeah, even when they were a band.

GIRL

India wasn't even on the map at that time!

GUY

Meh.

GIRL

Not that it's really on the map even now.

GUY What do you mean?

GIRL

who the hell comes to India?! None of the serious rockers do. (MORE)

3.

(CONTINUED)

CONTINUED: (3)

GIRL (CONT'D) And even if they do come, it's never Delhi! Always Mumbai or Bangalore or some such southy shit.

GUY

Yea ... I think that's because nobody really listens to them over here.

GIRL

what bullshit. It's all because of the ulegalities" involved in staging events in Delhi.

GUY

Nah not really. My reason makes more sense.

GIRL

You aren't a government stooge, are you?

GUY

Eh? No!

GIRL

Yea ... your face's too familiar to be that of a karamchaari.

GUY

Urm. what?

GIRL

Yea. Haven't you noticed? All those bastards are the hideousest looking, characterless single serving uworkers" around, intent on just getting money. I mean, do you ever remember a government stooge by face? You on the other hand ...

GUY

Wow. I'll take that as a compliment, I guess.

GIRL

You on the other hand, look too familiar.

GUY

My dad is a famous land-owner. We do frequent night clubs. Maybe there?

GIRL

oh wait. You ... you're that chap from the newspaper.

4.

(CONTINUED)

5.

CONTINUED: (4)

Guy visibly stiffens at this. Uneasy, his right hand instinctively goes into his jeans pocket.

Girl also becomes slightly subdued now, as she starts recollecting stuff she'd read in the paper.

GUY

Yea. We do get featured a lot in the newspaper.

GIRL

You ... you raped that girl and killed her.

GUY

The court ruled in my favor. So it'd be best if you stop making baseless allegations.

Girl's sinking further and further into her corner, scared of Guy now.

GIRL

But the court only ruled in your favor because of your dad.

Guy loses it, and in one swift motion, takes his hand out his pocket and throws something at Girl, narrowly missing her. It's a spool of RED ELECTRICAL TAPE. He leaps at Girl, pinning her against the corner.

GUY

shut up! shut the fuck up!

CUT TO:

INT. BUTCHER'S SHOP

The BUTCHER is carrying a CHICKEN by its wings, as the chicken is struggling wildly.

CUT TO:

INT. HOUSE - THREE MONTHS AGO, DAY

Guy is clean shaven, and wearing a tight fitting TSHIRT and JEANS. He's talking to Girl, whose face isn't shown yet.

GIRL (V.O.) You wanted to talk about settling some case you were falsely accusing her for.

CUT TO:

6.

INT. BUTCHER'S SHOP

The Butcher has the chicken on a slab in front of him, pressing its neck down, right arm raised high with a knife in it, ready to behead the chicken.

GIRL (V.O.)

It wasn't really about that, was it?

CUT TO:

INT. HOUSE

Guy's pinned Girl face-down, and is binding her hands behind her back using RED ELECTRICAL TAPE.

GIRL (V.O.)

You just wanted to show people you could fuck a girl.

CUT TO:

INT. BUTCHER'S SHOP

The Butcher brings the knife down in one fluid motion, chopping the chicken's head off.

GIRL (V.O.)

So you raped me. And drove that knife through me. Ha. No witnesses.

CUT TO:

EXT. BUTCHER'S SHOP - THREE MONTHS AGO

A slightly shaking and sweating Guy is seen running out from a narrow lane, glancing back every few steps, as though feeling from someone. He comes and stops in front of the shop.

Through the window, he see the Butcher skinning the headless chicken and cutting its wings off.

Guy smiles nervously, lights a CIGARETTE and walks away.

FADE TO BLACK.

7.

INT. ELEVATOR

We come out from behind someone's head, to see that the scene, as we'd left it earlier, has been dramatically altered -- it's now Girl who is pinning Guy against the corner.

GIRL

And you got away with it.

Girl takes out a KNIFE, from her back, so that it's implied that the knife was lodged in her. She raises the bloody knife, and stabs Guy with it once.

GIRL (CONT'D) Except divine retribution.

Guy falls down, seemingly dead.

CUT TO:

INT. HOUSE - THREE MONTHS AGO

We see Girl, facedown on the carpet, dead.

CUT TO:

INT. BUTCHER'S SHOP

CHICKENS, in their CAGES, beating around in an agitated way, trying to escape.

CUT TO:

EXT. STREETS - PRESENT

Numerous BIRDS looking down from their high perches at the scene unfolding below.

An ANGRY MOB is attacking a MAN, while a POLICEMAN stands at the side, looking on, doing nothing.

We can now see that the man being attacked is Guy, and he's dressed just the way he's dressed in the elevator.

Suddenly, through the commotion and the chaos, an authoritative man, dressed completely in white, with a red tikka on his forehead, strides into the middle, towards guy. This new man, who we will call MOB LEADER, is carrying a BURNING PLANK.

(CONTINUED)

8.

CONTINUED:

Mob Leader, towering over Guy (who is sprawled on the road, cowering away from the mob), raises the plank high, and rather melodramatically, brings it down to set fire to Guy. Midway through the motion, we-

CUT TO:

INT. ELEVATOR

We see Guy is slowly fading away. Girl is sitting cross legged in the middle of the elevator. Her head is bowed down, seemingly staring at the floor of the elevator, and she's smiling.

CUT TO:

INT. HOUSE

Girl is lying on a WHITE SHEET, dressed completely in white, clutching a bunch of WHITE ROSES. Her eyes are closed, and she has a tranquil look on her face. It's implied that it's her funeral.

A sullen man, revealed to be the Mob Leader, comes up and places a WREATH of WHITE ROSES on her head.

CUT TO:

EXT. STREETS

Mob Leader, towering over Guy (who is sprawled on the road, cowering away from the mob), raises the plank high, and rather melodramatically, brings it down to set fire to Guy. Just as the lit plank is gets close to Guy, we-

CUT TO:

INT. ELEVATOR

Girl is in the middle of the elevator. She has a satisfied smile on her face.

Guy fades away completely.

Almost all of a sudden, the elevator starts moving up again.

A soft, white, almost ethereal light suddenly starts shining over Girl.

satisfied and smiling, she looks up towards it and we-

(CONTINUED)

9.

CONTINUED:

FADE TO WHITE.

EXT. OPEN PLAIN

We see some BIRDS flying in a perfect V-pattern across the sky.

FADE OUT.

[CREDITS]

[END]