Cul de Sac

 (It is 2 am in a suburban town outside of Springfield. Everything is quiet and peaceful at the start of the episode. It is broken by a faraway train whistle.)

(ALLISON wakes up to the sound of her baby crying. She stumbles out of bed and gets baby out of his bassinet for a feeding.)

ALLISON (sleepily)

Shhh, sweetheart, it’s okay…Come on, we’re going to go sit in the living room. Daddy did the last one, let’s let him sleep before work.

(She shifts through the silent house to the living room nearby, sitting down in a rocking chair and removing her shirt so she can feed the baby. She pulls a blanket over her shoulders and shivers a little. Overall, the scene is peaceful and quiet as she rocks rhythmically and the baby eats.)

ALLISON

There you go, sweetie…Oh, look at the moon, isn’t it beautiful?

(She starts humming softly to the baby in the still night. There are a few sounds out the open window, including high heels on the sidewalk passing by. Then there is the sound of a train rumbling past. It is soft and dreamlike as it sails past her window. She stops rocking and stares in awe as it passes. Once it’s gone, the air is still again.)

ALLISON (whispering)

Did you see that, my sweet love? Let’s get you back in bed.

(The scene fades out as Allison gets up and shuffles back to bed.)

(The next scene fades in on the same clipping high heels along the sidewalk. QUINN is walking along the sidewalk, on the phone with her friend as she heads home. The baby’s cry can be faintly heard for a second.)

QUINN

Of course I had them drop me off at the end of the street. Look, it’s not that I don’t want him knowing where I live. It’s that this road’s a dead end and he’d have to make like a forty point turn to get out. We don’t all live in Boston, Amber. I can’t exactly walk to the T and meet him there.

(She pauses, then laughs)

QUINN

Look, I’ll take my little slice of suburban paradise, thank you. Do you know how many stars I can see right now?

(Pauses)

QUINN (smiling)

It was really nice. I don’t know, I’d like to see him again. And he seemed to be into me too? You’d like him a lot. I guess we’ll just…see where it takes us.

(The train rumbling starts up again and QUINN stops walking as the ghost train passes through the yard beside her. She drops her phone and AMBER can be heard through the receiver.)

AMBER

Quinn? Quinn, are you there?

(QUINN is awestruck as she watches the train sail through and rumble away. Then she picks up her phone again.) 

QUINN (still stunned)

Hi Amber…yeah, I’m here. You’re not going to believe what I just saw in my neighbor’s backyard…

(The scene fades out as she starts walking again.)

(The scene fades in on ADELE, an older woman living alone. She is awake in her kitchen, making tea because she can’t sleep. In the distance, there is the baby’s cry and the clip of high heels on the pavement. ADELE works smoothly and silently, pouring the tea, stirring in a bit of honey, and taking a sip. Then she goes to the back door and opens it, gazing outside.)

ADELE

The backyard looks beautiful this time of year. Even though you aren’t here to garden and I’m no green thumb. But still, your roses have managed to keep thriving. Your roses…oh sweetheart, I miss my Rose.

(She takes a deep breath, then a long sip of her tea. The sounds of summer nights come through her window, calm and peaceful.)

(The silence is broken by the rumble of the train. It is closer this time and, unlike with the other two, it stops in her backyard with an unearthly whistle.)

(ADELE watches as it pulls in, sipping her tea. There is the sound of a door sliding open and the clipping of efficient, ghostly footsteps.)

ADELE

Oh hello. And where are we going?

(The conductor doesn’t answer, but ADELE steps on board anyway. There is nothing scary about this moment, everything is calm and peaceful as the train takes off for its next destination and the episode fades out.)

END