Arcas – Sample 2

© Art by JC Thomas from ARCAS

Below you’ll find the second writing sample for ARCAS. These are pages for the original short film from which the comic is being adapted. Enjoy!

ARCAS

By

Chris Hutton

Story by

Marielle Woods and Chris Hutton

INT. CENTRAL WORKSTATION – DAY

Computers everywhere. Floor to ceiling. Two booth-like stations screened off to either side of a two-seated central monitor area. More seats at less important stations.

Sam taps a button. Casual. He’s done this a million times.

SAM

Say again, Artemis Base?

ARTEMIS DIRECTOR (SPEAKER)

We are good for launch. Copy Arcas Station? Good for launch.

Sam blows at the steam from his coffee and grabs a sesame seed from a pile. He holds the seed through an air hole of a mouse cage; EDDY, the mouse, noses at the offering.

SAM

Check. EECOM?

COMMANDER SITWELL (SPEAKER)

Go.

SAM

Hydraulics?

COMMANDER SITWELL (SPEAKER)

All go, Sam. Prep the mess hall, we’ll be back in time for lunch.

SAM

Hallelujah, sir.

COMMANDER SITWELL (SPEAKER)

Our resident cynic been giving you a hard time?

SAM

Not at all, sir – just ready to kick someone else’s butt after six months playing with that cheat.

COMMANDER SITWELL (SPEAKER)

You just want us back so I’ll sign your release and get you off that orbiting tin can and down here where the real action is.

SAM

Just ready to do my part–

An orange light blinks on the console, lit then gone.

SAM (CONT’D)

Hold. I had a flicker on booster 3.

COMMANDER SITWELL (SPEAKER)

Copy. Likely a short, again. Still reading?

Sam stares. No light. Finally presses the button to speak.

SAM

No. I’d like to call in Xu. Advise.

COMMANDER SITWELL (SPEAKER)

Negative. All reads well on board and at Artemis Base. Relay Ship II is good for launch. Let’s go.

SAM

Copy that Commander. See you soon.

A timer begins on the monitor: “30. 29. 28…” Sam glances to the thruster light. Still off. Pauses on it.

“23. 22. 21…”

The light remains unlit. Sam runs his hand through his hair.

“17. 16. 15…”

Sam tenses in his seat as Eddy perches up by an air hole. He grins at the mouse, then turns back to the count down.

“10. 9. 8…”

He leans forward: “7. 6…”

COMMANDER SITWELL (SPEAKER)

— Go in five. Four. Three. Two. One.

The THRUSTERS ENGAGE blasting over the speaker. No warning light. Sam taps nervously. The THRUSTERS INCREASE VOLUME.

COMMANDER SITWELL (SPEAKER) (CONT’D)

Clear of Artemis Base. ETA, one hour, 37 minutes.

SAM

Copy. I’ll put out the welcome mat.

Sam sighs and leans back. Turns to Eddy with another seed.

SAM

How’s that for a start to the day,
Eddy?

(re: Eddy won’t take it)

No?

Sam shrugs and cracks the seed open for himself when — BOOM!

COMMANDER SITWELL (SPEAKER)

Command Module abort! Abort!

ASTRONAUT 1 (SPEAKER)

System jammed. Come in, system —

— STATIC.

A NEW LIGHT FLASHES! Sam wheels to the neighboring console. All calculated action. Flipping switches.

SAM

Relay II come in?

(STATIC)

Relay shuttle, come in.

(STATIC)

Commander Sitwell? Ben?

Still STATIC. SAM drops his head for a moment, taking it in, then flips the next switch.

SAM (CONT’D)

Artemis Base, come in.

ARTEMIS DIRECTOR (SPEAKER)

This is Artemis base. We’ve lost visual —

BOOM! And more STATIC.

SAM

Artemis —

A station ALARM SOUNDS. Sam swivels to — THE MONITOR: “Incoming.” Sam braces.

Another BOOM! This time not over the speakers. Sam shields his eyes as SPARKS fly out from overhead. Coolant billows down drowning the fire before it can take hold.

A GRINDING NOISE WRENCHES through the station. Everything shakes. Sam’s coffee crashes to the floor!

The mouse cage slips over the edge, falling. Sam reaches for it, then…

Slowly the mouse cage begins to float rather than fall. Sam pushes it down and the cage suctions to the console, but the maneuver thrusts him up into the air. Welcome to zero G.

SAM (CONT’D)

No, no, no.

(flips switch)

Xu!



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