At Death’s Door

:)


Download 375.95 Kb.
Page1/4
Date conversion14.07.2018
Size375.95 Kb.
  1   2   3   4
Star Trek: Excelsior

Season Four: Ex Astris Mirificentia

Episode 403: “At Death’s Door

by Martin Fisher
SCENE 403-01
EXT. SPACE
FX: The Excelsior passes by at warp speed. Fast!
INT. EXCELSIOR BRIDGE
FX: Red alert is sounding. Sensors beep away frantically.
ROL

That’s it! That’s as fast as she’ll go!


DOVAN

Distance of the wave?


NEEVA

Ten thousand kilometres. And closing.


FX: Dovan activates the intercom.
DOVAN

Bridge to Engineering. We need more speed!

(beat; no answer)

Dovan to J’naya! Can you hear me?


LORHROK

Intercom’s out. The wave’s disrupting all systems.


FX: Sensors beep.
NEEVA

Wave closing to nine thousand kilometres!


DOVAN

Do what you can, Bev.


ROL

Aye, sir.


LORHROK

Sir, if that wave hits us...


DOVAN

It’ll tear this ship apart like a piece of paper in a rainstorm made of knives. I know what a null particle is, Number One.


NEEVA

Eight thousand kilometers!


FX: Now we start hearing the sound of a low rumble. This is slowly getting louder. There’s an explosion way below decks, maybe not even a rumble, and some bridge alarms.
YUBARI

Casualties, Deck Seventeen!


ROL

I’ve lost impulse and helm control!


FX: the rumbling is still getting louder. Now we hear the sounds of systems starting to fluctuate and fail.
DOVAN

We don’t need them! Just give us more speed!


FX: Lorhrok checking readouts at his bridge console.
LORHROK

We’ll be lucky to maintain this speed. Warp field geometry is degrading!


NEEVA

Four thousand kilometres!

YUBARI

Sir, recommend we raise shields.

DOVAN

Against a null shockwave? Shields’d be nothing but a power drain.


NEEVA

Two thousand kilometers! Impact in six seconds!


FX: The rumbling is now at its highest. The sensors are doing a sort of countdown from six seconds, making a distinctive bleep sound:
Bleep.

Bleep.

Bleep.
Bleep.

Bleep.
But then, just as they are about to tick down to zero:
FX: The rumbling stops, almost abruptly. Systems come back online. There’s a general “systems power up” noise.
Beat.
DOVAN

Report?
FX: Neeva reads from her console as she reports:


NEEVA

The wave’s dissipated, Captain. All systems coming back online. Full control restored.


DOVAN

Stand down red alert. Good work, Bev.


FX: The red alert is cancelled as the ship drops to yellow alert.
ROL

Thank you, sir.


FX: Intercom comes on.
J’NAYA [over the comm]

Engineering to Bridge. Is everyone alright?


DOVAN

We are. How’s my ship?


J’NAYA [over the comm]

Winded, sir. But safe. Recommend we drop a warning buoy and stay as far away from this sector as possible.


DOVAN

Negative, Miss J’naya. We’re going back in there. Be ready to jump to maximum warp instantly, in case we run into another of these shockwaves.


J’NAYA [over the comm]

Yes, sir. Can we have a minute to, ehm... clean up?


DOVAN

Permission granted. Bridge out.


LORHROK

Back in there, sir? Are you sure that’s a good idea? We were just passing through, minding our business, when a null particle shockwave suddenly popped up on long-range and tried to murder us. Maybe we should stay out of the neighborhood?


DOVAN

Tell me about null particles, Lorhrok.

LORHROK

Supposedly... they are perfect annihilators. They touch a particle of matter, and that matter is gone – no conservation of mass or energy.

DOVAN

Isn’t that a bit far-fetched, Lieutenant?


LORHROK

It should be completely impossible, according to everything we’ve learned about physics in the past six thousand years. In fact, my homeworld’s science agency – the Trill Academy – just put out a paper last year that proved null particles can’t physically exist.


DOVAN

But they almost just destroyed the Excelsior.

(beat)

Exploration is the whole reason we’re out here. Would you ever forgive me if we ran away?


LORHROK

(gamely)


No, captain, I would not. Just playing the devil’s advocate.

(he stands)

I’ll get down to Engineering and see if they need an extra pair of hands.
Lorhrok exits to the turbolift.
Simultaneously:
DOVAN

Helm, find out where that shockwave came from and go there. Warp Eight.


ROL

Aye, sir.


EXT. SPACE
The Excelsior goes to warp.

THEME SONG!


NARRATOR

Tonight’s episode: “At Death’s Door,” by Martin Fisher.



SCENE 403-02
EXT. SPACE
FX: Excelsior flies by at a good warp clip.
INT. SICKBAY

Sharp is in her office, clicking on something on her desk computer (SFX), when Hennessy silently pokes his head around the corner to get her attention.


NURSE HENNESSY

Melissa?
SHARP

Mike. How are the new Trill patients?
NURSE HENNESSY

Not good, doctor. The burns are much worse than we thought. Their bed was right against the bulkhead when that coolant tank exploded.

(short pause)

We’re not sure either of them will survive.


SHARP

What about Teela’s symbiont?

NURSE HENNESSY

Hard to say.

(beat)

We’re contacting the top names on the ship’s Trill Emergency Transplant list – First Officer Alecz Lorhrok and Transporter Chief Marel Lorth are on standby.


(beat)

Just a precaution, of course.


FX: Sharp stands.
SHARP

Don’t worry, Mike. Jalin Tigan loves his wife too much to die without her... and Teela Ob has enough will-to-live for both of them.


NURSE HENESSY

She has lived four lifetimes.


FX: Sharp starts walking toward the end of her office, into sickbay proper.
SHARP

All the more reason to want to keep living. Let’s take a look.



SCENE 403-03
EXT. SPACE
FX: Excelsior decelerates to normal space.
INT. BRIDGE
ROL

Approaching origin coordinates. No sign of null particles in the vicinity.


LORHROK

Standard orbit. Neeva, what are we looking at?


NEEVA

Class-M planet, sir.


LORHROK

Class-M. This far out from the sun?


NEEVA

There’s an energy field around the planet; like a Shroud. It’s letting most signals through, but not letting very much out again.


ROL

A greenhouse effect.


DOVAN

Artificial?


NEEVA

Scanners are having a hard time with it. The Shroud is made of null particles, sir.


DOVAN

Interesting. What else can you tell us?


NEEVA

The planet was definitely inhabited at some point, but I’m not reading anything but ghosts now. Signs of orbital bombardment.


DOVAN

That explains why nobody’s home. Was this recent?


NEEVA

No, sir. The ruins are at least a quarter-million years old.

(FX: sensor alert)

Captain, they’re Iconian!


DOVAN

Ah, the lengendary demons of air and darkness. Pull back on scanners. We don’t want to trigger [any sort of automated welcome.]


Actor, record full line. Producer, interrupt, truncate, and overlap.

FX: Sensors beep frantically. Proximity alarms, too. The Excelsior automatically snaps to Yellow Alert.

NEEVA

Sir, we’re being scanned! It’s a deep alpha beam! Accessing our computer database!


FX: We hear the computers being rapidly shuffled through, files being loaded and read at the rate of thousands per second.
DOVAN

Shields up!


FX: A scanner beam rises in sound, passes back and forth over the bridge several times. As it goes:
YUBARI

Do you want me to target the source with torpedoes, sir?


DOVAN

Negative. It’s just a suspicious old computer snooping through our luggage. Bit like my gramps. Don’t do anything to scare it.


FX: The scanner beam is fading by now, and then... it’s done.
ROL

Looks like they’re finished.


Neeva, as she checks her console:
NEEVA

They took a lot of classified data from our computers, but no damage.


DOVAN

Good. There’s no one left in the galaxy who can read Iconian databanks, so let’s just hope this planet doesn’t have any more surprises.


FX: A new sensor alert at Rol’s console.
ROL

Sir?
DOVAN

Yes, Mister Rol.
ROL

Another surprise for you, captain. The scan lit up another vessel, thirty thousand kilometers to stern. It’s in a decaying orbit, sir.


Character note: Rol and Dovan are developing what is decidedly a relationship with a lot of very dry teasing. I’m not sure if it’s friendly or not, but definitely teasing.
YUBARI

That’s not all. I’m getting multiple hull breaches.


DOVAN

Why didn’t we see this ship immediately?


YUBARI

I’m not sure.


ROL

(a little awed)

I am.
DOVAN

What do you mean, Bev?


ROL

See for yourself. I’m putting her on screen.


FX: Excelsior viewscreen.
Beat.
LORHROK

How... is that starship even possible?

ROL

It never occurred to our computers that that thing could be a spaceship.

DOVAN

Assemble an away team. Now.



SCENE 403-04
INT. ALIEN SHIP – ENGINE SECTION

Spooky and derelict, but not all that alien. More like a World War II submarine with damage, steam leaks, and power failure. The away team has beamed into a large, cavernous area where conveyer belts, some of them still powered, carry vast quantities of solid fuel – essentially, coal – into mammoth furnaces, which burn the fuel and power gears that crank slowly as if feeding a vast steam engine... which is, essentially, accurate. It’s a STEAMPUNK SPACESHIP!


FX: Transporters beam in an away team. Lorhrok, Sharp, Yubari, and the Major.
LORHROK

(breathtaken)

Would you look at that?
THE MAJOR

Sir, is this the engineering section?


SHARP

It sure is hot enough.


YUBARI

Not to mention filthy.


LORHROK

Ladies and gentlemen? That’s a furnace. Those are conveyer belts, carrying something that looks suspiciously like coal to be dumped into that fire. And that fire... is apparently powering this entire spaceship.

(FX: Sharp pulls out her medical tricorder somewhere in here)

(wonderstruck)

Of course it’s warm and a little dirty. It’s also something I never even imagined. Someone, out there, somewhere in the stars, for some reason, decided to build a starship powered by steam.
SHARP

And that’s impressive?


LORHROK

Do you have any idea how many hundreds of tons of coal you would have to burn, how much water you’d have to boil, to get just one second of the power the Excelsior produces with dilithium?


YUBARI

I’m afraid you’re going to tell us.

FX: Sharp’s tricorder detects something.

SHARP

He’s not going to have the chance. I’m getting lifesigns. Two. Very faint – there’s some interference.


LORHROK

(instantly all business)

Can you get a location?
SHARP

Near the center of the ship.


YUBARI

The part with the hull breaches.


SHARP

The very same.


THE MAJOR

They must have been near the center of the null particle shockwave. The survivors might be able to tell us what happened.


LORHROK

No, they weren’t near it, Major. This ship is the center. Otherwise it would have been completely destroyed. But how do you get null particles on a ship built with Industrial Age technology?


SHARP

Alecz...
LORHROK

Of course, sorry. Let’s move!
FX: They move down the corridor at full speed.

SCENE 403-05
INT. EXCELSIOR BRIDGE
ROL

Captain, it’s getting serious. I can’t compensate.


DOVAN

Understood. Excelsior to Away Team. There’s some kind of interference at the center of the alien ship. We’ve lost transporter lock; proceed with caution.


Beat.
DOVAN

Anything?


ROL

No, sir. We’ve lost contact.


Beat.
DOVAN

Keep trying. Prep a rescue shuttle, just in case.


Dovan presses a button on his console.
DOVAN [with shipwide reverb]

All hands, yellow alert.


FX: Yellow alert klaxon.

SCENE 403-06

INT. ALIEN SHIP – CORRIDOR

Still derelict. Still steampunk. Lorhrok turns a big iron wheel to unlock a large iron door – just like an ancient submarine hatch – and the door swings open. The Away Team follows him through. Dr. Sharp is still scanning with her tricorder.

LORHROK

(noticing something on the door)

There it is again.
YUBARI

What?
LORHROK

Haven’t you noticed? These doors we’re going through. They’re all locked – from the outside. I’m starting to worry about what’s at the center of this spaceship.
FX: Yubari arms (charges) her phaser.
YUBARI

Whatever it is, we’ll be ready for it.


SHARP

There!
FX: She runs over to where two bodies lie on the ground.


LORHROK

Do you recognize the species?


SHARP

No.
YUBARI

Are they dead?
SHARP

No, thank God. Just unconscious. I’ll need a few minutes to bring both of them around.


LORHROK

Alright. We’ll scout ahead. Major, guard Melissa. Yubari, with me.


THE MAJOR

Yes, sir!


FX: Lorhrok and Yubari continue to walk down the corridor. Dr. Sharp and her tricorder and medical work fade away as we get distance from them. The groans and creaks of the ship’s steam-powered bowels get louder as we get deeper, and we officially transition into...
INT. ALIEN SHIP - BOWELS
LORHROK

Look at this, Yubari. More hull reinforcements. Seems like sixty percent of the ship is heavy doors and reinforced bulkheads.


YUBARI

If you were flying through space on steam power, without deflector shields – or even forcefields – wouldn’t you want a lot of hull integrity?


LORHROK

If I were moving faster than light, no amount of metal would save me from micrometeors. And if I were moving at sublight – which I think this ship must have been – my biggest concern is radiation, and the external hull is more than enough for that. No, whoever built this ship was scared of something. Not something natural. Something... determined.


YUBARI

You mean, a prisoner?


LORHROK

...Let’s keep going.

CUT – Back to Sharp, with Sharp still running the tricorder and the shallower, less elaborate background noise we had when we were last with her.

This location change needs to be VERY clear to the audience, or it won’t work and will just turn into all kinds of confusing.
INT. ALIEN SHIP - CORRIDOR
FX: She applies a hypospray to the necks of one of the wounded men.
RYSE

(groans – he’s coming around to consciousness)


SHARP

Hi, friend. Don’t try to move. You’ve got quite a few bruised ribs.


As of this moment, the Universal Translator hasn’t locked onto Ryse’s syntax yet, so there will be a few moments where he’s talking in an alien language. (Pronunciation is not especially important, since only Ryse uses this during the episode, but we have written the alien stuff more or less phoenetically.)
RYSE

(weak, dazed, in great pain – but desperate)



Con wey... srubitan Palo? Where sur Palo?
SHARP

Your friend’s right here. Don’t talk. It’s bad for your ribs, and the translator’s still processing your language. Don’t worry: we have a team headed for the core looking for other survivors.


RYSE

NO!
SHARP

What?
RYSE



Awllen you INSANE?!
CUT forward again to Lorhrok and Yubari.
INT. ALIEN SHIP - BOWELS
LORHROK

Gravity’s getting weak. I think we’re almost there.

(excited little breath)

Alright. Cover me.


YUBARI

Already am.


FX: Yubari pulls out and recharges her gun.
FX: Lorhrok opens up the door, and, walking forward, we pass with them into…
INT. THE CENTRAL HOLD

All the steampunk goes away, and we’re left with a low humming noise, which oscillates just enough, at just a high enough volume, to be vaguely irritating.

There’s something on the ground. Hard to make out, partly because of the inconsistent lighting, and partly because it’s strangely shaped. Lorhrok and Yubari step toward it, slowly.

LORHROK

What is that?


YUBARI

You mean “who” “was” that.


LORHROK

(confused; not seeing it)

What? That –

(it hits him: it’s a dead woman)

Oh Maker. It looks like... like she exploded.
YUBARI

I see brain fragments on the rear wall.

(pointing)

Those are parts of her small intestine. And I believe [those may be bones of her pelvis.]


She is interrupted. Actress, record full line. Producer, interrupt and truncate.
LORHROK

[cutting her off]

Yubari. Enough.
CUT back to Sharp and her patient and that background ambience.
INT. ALIEN SHIP - CORRIDOR
RYSE

Are you trying to kill us all? Get them out! Whoever the hells you are, get them out of there!


SHARP

[with some overlap (maybe considerable overlap)]

Calm down! You’re hurting yourself!
RYSE

PALO! PALO! THEY’RE BREACHING THE CORE! PALO! YOU HAVE TO

(FX: Sharp injects him with a sedative)

Stop!


(beat)

...them...


SHARP

Sorry, friend. Sharp to Lorhrok.

(FX: she hits her commbadge)

(pause; nothing happens)

Sharp to Yubari.

(pause; nothing again)

(beginning to get scared)

Sharp to Excelsior. Come in.

(pause; nothing again)

Major, go after them. Triple-time.


THE MAJOR

Yes, ma’am!


FX: The Major arms his phaser rifle (SFX) as he runs for it.
CUT back to the spooky central room.
INT. THE CENTRAL HOLD
LORHROK

Scan the area. What could have done this to her?


YUBARI

Scanning. It might take a few seconds to punch through the interference.

(FX: tricorder scan)

Getting one life sign other than us.


LORHROK

Where?
YUBARI

Localizing.

(FX: tricorder processing)

(beat; stunned silence)

That’s not possible.

LORHROK

Yubari?

YUBARI

Sir, the lifesign I’m detecting.

(swallows)

Sir, it’s her. That woman’s still alive.
LORHROK

(repeating Yubari’s line because there’s nothing else to say)

That’s... not possible.
YUBARI

I know that. You know that. I’m sure she knows that. She hardly even has a body anymore. But her body doesn’t doesn’t seem to know it. She. Is. Alive. She may even be conscious.


FX: Lorhrok starts walking forward again, still a bit slowly
LORHROK

Miss? Are you alright? Can you hear me?


He reaches the body, such as it is, and kneels next to it.
YUBARI

Are you sure you want to touch her?


LORHROK

I don’t think she’s going to hurt me, Yubari. She’s not really capable of it.

(beat)

She’s lying face-down. I’m turning her over.



(beat)

Hi, there. My name’s –

(gasp! of surprise and fear as he sees the face)
FX: A screeching roar, medium volume, as an energy field leaps out of the body through the eyes, nose, and mouth and rushes toward Lorhrok. (The viewers can’t see this, but we’ll explain in a moment – for now, just make the SFX for it.)
CUT TO:
INT. EXCELSIOR BRIDGE
FX: Intercom whistle.
ROL

Sir! The interference just disappeared!


NEEVA

I have transporter locks!


DOVAN

Beam them all back now!


NEEVA

Dropping shields!


CUT TO:
INT. EXCELSIOR TRANSPORTER ROOM
FX: The team beams back.
Sharp is, of course, the first to swing into action. Stepping down from the platform, she says:
SHARP

I need these two survivors in sickbay! Marel!


LORTH

Sickbay, prepare for emergency site-to-site transport!


YUBARI

Lorhrok! Sir!

FX: Yubari grabs him as he looks like he’s going to fall. They both stumble.

YUBARI

(with effort, as though straining under the weight)

Major, help me!
THE MAJOR

(to Lorhrok)

Lieutenant Lorhrok!
FX: As he says the above line, the Major runs forward and grabs the other shoulder. All three of them step off the platform, Lorhrok stumbling. All this is happening in real time as the scene continues:
SHARP

Alecz – Alecz, are you alright?


THE MAJOR [overlapping with Sharp’s line above]

Pulse is weak!


SHARP [overlapping with the Major’s line above]

Medkit!
YUBARI [overlapping slightly with Sharp’s line above]

I saw something on the ship – some kind of energy entering him.
LORTH [way in the background, underlying the above dialogue]

Sickbay, casualties transporting now!


FX: In the background, the two alien survivors are beamed to sickbay.
Alecz is not alright at all. His breathing is ragged and irregular, coming in gasps, as he sweats like a victim in the throes of malarial fever dreams. Something is inside him, trying to burst to the surface.
LORHROK

(through appropriate amounts of gasping, etc.)



Doctor.
SHARP

Marel Lorth, help me!


LORTH

Absolutely.


LORHROK

(still ragged)



NO!

(FX: a moment as he struggles to swallow down the thing bubbling up in him)

No Trill. Doctor. Keep... away. Keep my species... away.

(he’s getting weaker as he says this; the thing is taking over)


SHARP

Alecz, what? You’re not making any sense.


LORHROK

away... from... me...

The thing takes over Alecz. Suddenly, his breathing is clear and normal. He talks in a low, clear, slow, confident tone – Sam, imagine you are Christian Bale’s Batman with a New Zealand accent – but it is heavily filtered. Result? A very SCARY VOICE. (see www.starshipexcelsior.com/stuff/test.mp3) You have be very clear in your pronunciation because of the filter.

Post-production will need to filter the “BRINGER” lines throughout the episode. (NOTE TO SELF: Vox processing for this is triple-banding with pitch-shifting at ratios 100, 133, and 153 – explain to Jim.)
LORHROK-BRINGER

Melissa Sharp. Drowning slowly. You will believe yourself alone, and that is all that will matter.


This is... very unsettling. He’s just spoken two of Dr. Sharp’s deepest fears.
YUBARI

What was that? What did you say to her?


LORHROK-BRINGER

Asuka Yubari. In battle, of course.


YUBARI

Lieutenant Lorhrok!


And just like that, Lorhrok is back. But he’s gasping and pausing and generally still fighting really hard still.
LORHROK

(gasping and so forth)

I told you how you’re going to die. Help me.

(heavy exhale; passes out)


FX: Lorhrok’s body hits the floor in front of the transporter pad.




  1   2   3   4
:)


The database is protected by copyright ©hestories.info 2017
send message

    Main page

:)