Screen Scene: No Easy Deaths

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This is a scene from the pilot episode of Raising Kane, a television show I wrote a dozen episodes of (never produced) before I switched my focus to novels. The Kane family, represented in this scene by Jolie (one of the daughters) and Francesca (the grandmother), are at the wake after the funeral of Jonas Kane (the father), murdered by someone as yet unknown.

INT. DINING ROOM – DAY

FRANCESCA
How are you doing?

JOLIE
I’m alright. How are you?

FRANCESCA
Not so good. When I was younger, I used to envy old people.

JOLIE
Grandma, you’re not old.

FRANCESCA
What’s the popular term for it these days? Vintage. I’m vintage.

JOLIE
You’re retro.

FRANCESCA
Whatever they call it, I used to envy it.

JOLIE
Why?

FRANCESCA
I thought ol…vintage people must have so much practice at burying friends and family that they would just get used to it. (Beat) I’ve had a lot of practice. You don’t get used to it. (Beat) I’ve buried my parents, my sisters, my husband, and now my son. You don’t get used to it.

JOLIE
I thought death was something I would be able to build up to. Start with some easy deaths. Gloria, my goldfish when I was seven. Eventually the dogs. One day Great Uncle Gordon on Mom’s side. Although I think he might live forever. (Beat) You know what I figured out, Grandma?

FRANCESCA
What?

JOLIE
There are no easy deaths. I bawled my eyes out when Gloria died.

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