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The Omega Theory
by josh dyer (drumwvu@yahoo.com)

Rated: PG-13   Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy   User Review:
NOT YET
RATED

The pieces of an ancient cryptogram come together. Interstellar war and the fate of worlds hang in the balance.


This screenplay is copyrighted to its author. All rights reserved. This screenplay may not be used or reproduced without the express written permission of the author.



EXT. DEEP SPACE - NIGHT
                                                            
Stars are flying past the camera at nearly the speed of
light. The camera banks to the left and right, avoiding
large unknown planets. The camera banks upward, as if to
surface like a submarine.

Then... the stars cease.

The view is now closing in on the Horsehead Nebula. Moments
later, the camera veers to the left again. Now, it is
heading for a nearby spiral galaxy. As the camera moves thru
the spiral galaxy, a feminine voice begins to speak...
                                                            
                       NARRATOR
All things must come to an end.
Lives, careers, relationships --
and experiments. It's a very
strange place, the universe.
Teaming with life in millions of
forms, but yet placed so far apart
that it's nearly impossible to
know that there's anything else
alive out there in the void but
yourselves. That's the paradox of
creation and destruction.
                                                            
The view continues to fly thru the galaxy, now skipping past
familiar blue moons orbiting a gargantuan orange planet with
a massive storm on its surface. Then thru a massive asteroid
field. And slowly, the camera decellerates past a barren red
planet, and comes to rest in orbit around a small blue and
white marble looking planet. Several pieces of shiny
metallic objects dart past the camera as the narration
continues...
                                                            

2.

                       NARRATOR (O.C.)
Time... Did we create it, or has
it been here all along? I wish I
knew the answer to that one.

(there are a few high pitched
bleeps off cameara)

Who's to judge how much time is
given to any one person, place or
species?
(pause)
Don't shoot me, I'm just the
messenger.

(now an evenly spaced constant
bleep from off camera...)
                                                            
The camera zooms in on the planet and passes thru the
atmosphere. Billowing clouds engulfing the view from time to
time. The camera continues in over the Americas to the east
coast.

LEGEND: Fairfax, VA
LEGEND: 2104 A.D.

(pause)
LEGEND: T-100 and counting...
                                                            
 
EXT. NEIGHBOURHOOD - DAY
                                                            
John Mallone is on his way out the door, in a hurry as
usual. Wearing his "company-man issue" blue uniform,
briefcase under one arm, a stack of dissheveled papers under
the other.
                                                            
                       CARMEN (PERTURBED)
      (standing at the
       door)
John? .... John!!

pause

Aren't you forgetting something?
(now looking coyly at her hubby)
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (slapping his head
       with his
       briefcase)
Damn!! My coffee!!
                                                            

3.

John starts back toward his wife, a young ravishing
brunette, standing at the doorstep of their upscale suburbia
home in nothing but her sleek nighty.
                                                            
                       CARMEN (IN DISBELIEF)
      (her mouth drops
       open)
Coffee, eh?
                                                            
                       JOHN (JOKINGLY)
You know how I like it.... hot, on
the go....
(gives his wife a passionate kiss
goodbye)
... and with a lot of sugar.
                                                            
                       CARMEN
      (laughing)
You'd better get going before they
decide they don't need you
anymore.

(She covers her mouth trying to
hide her embarrasment)

Love ya... Have a great day.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (hopping into his
       streamlined
       bullet-like car)
I will. Love you, too.
                                                            
John tosses his briefcase into the backseat, and drops his
papers on the passenger seat. The top page of the portfolio
reads:

Government Property
Department of Astroarchaeology
Messier-196

The car speeds away toward downtown.
                                                            
 
EXT. DEPARTMENT OF GALACTIC SCIENCES - DAY
                                                            
The hustle and bustle of traffic is as heavy as it always is
on a Tuesday morning in the burbs of D.C. John's car is
pulling into the six story garage. We follow him as he moves
from the garage to the elevator. John shyly greets a few
strangers, maybe from other departments, and crosses his in
front of him on the handle of his briefcase.
                                                            

4.

                       MAN IN ELEVATOR
      (to John)
Floor?
                                                            
                       JOHN (SHY)
      (looking down)
Uh... Eight, please.

(pause)

Thanks.
                                                            
The doors slide qiuetly closed and a little bell sounds
before the small round platform shoots upward. The camera
moves out to show the passengers moving thru a clear
cylinder up the side of the lagre, pyramid-shaped GSD
compound(Galactic Sciences Department).
                                                            
 
INT. GSD COMPOUND - DAY
                                                            
John steps out of the people mover on his floor and moves
toward his office in the far corner. Several of his cohorts
greet him as he moves by their desks and terminals.

He sits down at his desk and opens his briefcase, rounding
up his materials for his 9am presentation on the Messier 196
system.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (to his office)
Computer on...
                                                            
A clear pannel appears in front of him at eye level. It's
blue screen flashes on.
                                                            
                       D.A.R.C.Y. (INVITING)
Good morning, Dr. Mallone.
(pause)
Are you ready for your 9am
presentation on M-196?
                                                            
                       JOHN (APPRECIATIVE)
Yes, DARCY. Could you pull up
those files of the tablet images
again?
                                                            
                       D.A.R.C.Y. (INVITING)
One moment, Dr...
                                                            
John moves over to his full sized mirror and begins putting
on his tie and coat.
                                                            

5.

                       D.A.R.C.Y.
File number A2186... M-196 photo
archive... Bronze tabletures of
unknown origin.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (still fiddling
       with his tie)
Thanks, DARCY.
(rubs the sleep from his eyes.)
Could you play my notes from last
week on the decryption?
                                                            
The images appear on a large screen on the wall behind his
desk. Two small doors on either side of it open to reveal
small cone-shaped speakers.
                                                            
                       D.A.R.C.Y.
Notes from... elevn twenty four:

In John's voice:

In looking at the markings on the
third plate in the set, the
inscriptions seem to be a written
prototype for some form of
archaeic technology of this
civilization. The most peculiar
and interesting thing about these
plates isn't their content, but
their physical attributes. The
first plate is nearly dissolved
into a blank sheet of metal -- it
has only one mark left on its
surface as does the second plate.
They appear to be similar figures,
but the one on the first plate is
rotated about 90 degrees with
respect to the second.

(DARCY's voice)
End of file. Shall I play it
again, Dr. Mallone?
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (moving toward his
       desk)
No, thank you DARCY. I need to get
going before I'm late...
                                                            
There's loud pounding on his cracked door.
                                                            

6.

                       CARTER (EXCITED)
Hey, Doc?! You ready to roll or
what?
                                                            
John begins sorting thru his papers, and upon finishing,
closes his briefcase and moves toward the door.
                                                            
                       JOHN (SLIGHTLY NERVOUS)
Okay.... Let's go.
                                                            
Carter and John move down the hallways -- John knows the
route well by now, two lefts and a right -- into the large
conference room on the 8th floor.
                                                            
 
INT. CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY
                                                            
Carter swings the door open then waives his open hand in
front of him as if to say, "after you, Dr. Mallone."
John moves into the dimmly lit room already full of other
high-ups from other divisions of the GSD -- twelve in all.
John stands in front of one of the two empty seats at the
front, get his notes, and moves behind the clear podium in
front of the large screen.
                                                            
An older balding gentleman in the corner stands up and
approaches John.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
Good morning, Dr. Mallone. Good
morning all.
                                                            
A few indistinguishable mumbles from the audience.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
Yes, well... Um -- Dr. Mallone, if
you're ready..?
                                                            
                       JOHN
I am...
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
Well, then as my great grandfather
once said, "Let's get this show on
the road."
                                                            
John places his notes on the podium and clears his throat
before commencing.

Carter taps him on the sleeve, and gives him an encouraging
thumbs up.
                                                            

7.

                       JOHN
      (to the room)
Projector...
                                                            
A lazer in the ceiling flashes to life and the images of
three bronze tablets with fine gold scribble inlays appear
on the large screen behind him.
                                                            
                       JOHN (MATTER-OF-FACT)
      (to the audinece)
In the past few months, the
department of astroarchaeology has
made rather large strides in the
study of these three talbets from
Messier 196 off the Belt of Orion.
In comparing these markings to
others that the GSD has uncovered
from the Draco System, and those
from the Andromeda Galaxy -- we
can concur that these markings are
a form of arcaeic language of this
civilization. As seen here on
tablet three...
(the image changes to a full
screen of the tablet)
... one can note the pattern of
the markings. In comparing these
to the sphere from Draco 282,
(now a split screen of the two)
we have concluded that the
markings on these new tablets are
of a technological nature...
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
      (interrupting)
Yes, John. But -- has your team
been able to decypher their
message?
                                                            
                       JOHN (SLIGHTLY PERTURBED)
Yes, Dr. Killion. I was just
getting to that...
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
My apologies, Dr.
(wrinkles his nose.)
Please, continue.
                                                            
John smiles at the muffled chuckles from the "peanut
gallery".
                                                            

8.

                       JOHN
The markings appear, as far as we
can tell, to be referencing some
sort of timing mechanism. It could
be their version of a Solar clock,
mabye a calendar, or perhaps a
sort of "time capsule" of their
civilization.
(pause)
The interesting thing to note is
that the markings on the first two
plates have all but dissolved,
save the two single marks on
either.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
      (interrupting
       again)
So, what does that mean. Dr?
                                                            
John allows his arms to relax at his side.
                                                            
                       JOHN
At the moment... we're not
entirely certain. We need to
examine further data retrieved
from the excursion team aboard the
T.S.S. Solaris before we can make
even an educated guess as to what
the two markings mean.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
      (to the room)
Have we HEARD from Solaris yet
this week?
                                                            
A younger woman with firery red hair pulls off her glasses
and replies.
                                                            
                       DR. TRENTON
The orbital team has only sent
back images from Mesier 196 in the
past few days. Teh cosmo-biology
team has recovered enough surface
specimines for research.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
And the findings, Ms. Trenton?
                                                            
                       DR. TRENTON (INSULTED)
The preliminary findings are that
this civilization isn't that much
different from ourselves. Carbon
            (MORE)

9.

                       DR. TRENTON (cont'd)
based lifeforms -- their caron
core is C-16, though, not C-12
like us. Breathes a nitrous oxygen
mixture, survives on water... The
metallic alkaloids of the tablets
don't seem to match up to any
other elements that we've logged
on the planet thus far, however.
This doesn't mean that they
weren't made there. We just need
more time to confirm or deny it.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
Well... It sounds like we're
making some headway on this
project anyway.

(looking to John)
Do you have anything else to add
to your work thus far, Dr.
Mallone?
                                                            
John begins to round up his papers.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Not at this point. As soon as we
get more data from the away team,
my colleagues and I can begin to
delve further into the marking's
meaning.
                                                            
Dr. Killion s looking at the pictures of tablets one and
two.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
Are those... the same marking, Dr
Mallone?
                                                            
                       JOHN
Uh... yes. We believe they are.
Though they could represent two
totally different things. We just
don't know right now.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
Ahh.. I see.
Well, if that's all...
                                                            
                       JOHN
Yes...
                                                            

10.

                       DR. KILLION
      (continuing)
Then, I say we adjourn to our
duties until next month, or til we
get more info from Solaris. Thank
you all... John, especially for
your presentation.
Have a great morning.
                                                            
The gallery gathers their respective belongings and makes
for the door. John and Carter stay beind to clean up their
belongings.
                                                            
                       CARTER (SARCASTICALLY)
Well. THAT went well.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (whispering)
Yeah... Considering that I thought
of the speach on the way to work
this morning.
                                                            
Both share in on the joke as they head for the door and make
their way back to their reasearch facilities.
                                                            
 
INT. DEPT OF ASTROARCHAEOLOGY--AREA 13 - DAY
                                                            
John and Carter make their way back thru two sets of card
security doors, a retinal scanner, and a DNA(spit in the
cup) scanner to Area 13 -- the secured holding place of the
M-196 plates.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Carter... could you get out plates
two and three and put them under
the scopes?
                                                            
                       CARTER
      (imitating his
       favorite blues
       singer)
Sho' nuff, Rock Doc.
                                                            
John makes his way over to the bank of high powered
microscopes and clears their trays of debris. Meanwhile,
Carter is humming his blues to as he retrieves the plates
and boogies on over to John.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Thanks, Carter. Let's see what
tehy look like today.
                                                            

11.

John places the plates, each the size of a pea, on the empty
examining trays and uses the remotes to get a good look at
them on the screen next to his head.

The camera goes in and out of focus until it finally comes
to rest on a square bronze plate in the center of view.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (almost singing
       rather than
       saying)
There we are...
                                                            
                       CARTER (WORRIED)
      (pointing to the
       screen)
Look at that.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (unshaken)
Yeah... Just as I thought. Only
two maarkings left on the third
plate.
                                                            
                       CARTER
      (imitating Dr
       Killion)
"Yes, but what does it all MEAN
Dr?"
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (laughing under
       his breath)
Beats the hell outta me at this
point. Could be the cycle of one
of the planet's moons...

(points to the plate)

See here..?
                                                            
John moves the view of the scope in on the next to last
figure.
                                                            
                       JOHN
This one kinda looks like it's
supposed to be one of the final
phases of a celestial body...
                                                            
                       CARTER
Uh huh, uh huh... Yeah, yeah. I
see it all right. (shrugs his
shoulders) But, why the hell would
            (MORE)

12.

                       CARTER (cont'd)
someone bury a lunar cycle miles
underground on their own planet?
                                                            
                       JOHN
Better yet -- why don't any of the
alloys on these things match any
of the elemental compounds on
M-196?
                                                            
                       CARTER
Maybe they're not from 196.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Right, but then where are they
from?
                                                            
                       CARTER
...And who the hell put 'em there?
                                                            
                       JOHN
I'm not so worried with WHO put
them there as I am with WHY are
they there.

(he massages the bridge of his
nose)

I mean -- what purpose would
something this small eight miles
down serve?
                                                            
                       CARTER (GUESSING)
Someone's been keepin' tabs?
                                                            
                       JOHN
Maybe... But, that seems a little
deep in the ground to put "spy
equipment".
                                                            
Their conversation is interrputed by the loud voice over the
intercom system:

"Dr. Mallone, Dr. Halfred to Mission Control... Dr. Mallone,
Dr. Halfred to Mission Control."

They look at each other, the fire of anticipation in their
eyes.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (together with
       Carter)
Solaris!
                                                            

13.

                       JOHN (HURRIED)
Carter. Put our "boys" back to
bed, and let's get to control
double time.
                                                            
                       CARTER
Aye, Cap'n!
                                                            
They both scramble to clean up as best they can and hustle
out the doors to get to mission control for the latest from
the away team near Messier 196.
                                                            
 
INT. MISSION CONTROL - DAY
                                                            
As John and Carter rush into the control room, the cracked
but intelligble voice of Commander Simms initiates the burn
sequence of the Solaris to raise its orbit. John and Carter
make their way to the Chief of Mission Control's station
above the control room floor.
Colnel Anderson looks to John like some sort of music
conductor as he stands in front of a large virtual pannel
moving icons around in midair. Col. Anderson's assistant, a
tennage looking boy greets the two as they approach.
                                                            
                       TROY (PROFESSIONAL)
Good day, gentleman.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Hey, Troy. What's the word?
                                                            
                       TROY
The Col. will be with you shortly.
                                                            
Troy walks off with his hands folded behind his back and his
nose in the air.
                                                            
                       CARTER
      (imitating a Nazi
       trooper)
(left arm raised in salute)
"Seig, Hail! Suut, suut!"
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (laughing)
That's an oldie...
                                                            

14.

                       CARTER
... But a goodie, right.
(to Col. Anderson)

Damn, Anderson. Can't they find
anyone more suited for you than
"Little Hitler" over there?
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
      (still moving
       icons around)
He may be... uh,
                                                            
                       CARTER
      (offering)
...A jackass?
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON (CORRECTING)
...Impersonable, but he's a
goddamn genuis at IT and virtual
interface systems.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (changing the
       subject)
So, Col. What's the latest from
Solaris?
                                                            
Anderson moves a few icons around and presses his index
finger on one that looks like a map of M-196. The large
screen is covered by a live shot of the 4-thruster cruiser
in orbit around an Earth-like planet. It's larger odd shaped
land masses, and three moons are the dead giveaway, though.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON (NONCHALANT)
The reason we called you two to
control is because Major Tommel
believes that she has some new
info on your plates that may be of
interest to your team.
                                                            
Anderson presses an icon on a separate lower menu row on the
screen and speaks into a thing clear tube that appears to be
growing out of his right ear.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON (BARKING)
Sat. Comm... Patch us in to Major
Sharen Tommel's uplink!
                                                            
A voice from far away on the lower floor replies, "Sat Comm
uplink established. The Major's on channel three!"
Anderson punches a few more icons, then the vision of a

15.

sexy and obviously overworked blonde appears before them on
a screen at the front of the control floor that takes up the
entire wall.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
Major Tommel. Can you hear me?
This is Col. Anderson in the
Crow's Nest.
                                                            
                       MAJ. TOMMEL
      (audio phasing in
       and out)
Aye, aye, Col. (static) I copy.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
Great. I have Drs. Mallone and
Halfred with me from our
Astro-Arch. group here at home. Go
ahead with your data report.
                                                            
Tommel's picture blurs in and out as she reports.
                                                            
                       MAJ. TOMMEL
Yes, sir. (she releases a heavy
sigh.)
We have gathered some information
from the groud team on the
identites of the markings on the
plates. As far as Capt. Drake and
his team have been able to
discover, the markings are a
series of numbers combined with
letters. Starting from the top
left of the First tablet, we
have...
(a still of the plate appears on
screen. The symbols change as she
reads them off.)
... A - 2 - C - 5 - D - 13 - B -
26 - E - 3.
                                                            
The screen moves back to Tommel.
                                                            
                       MAJ. TOMMEL
We have found out that each of the
three plates has exactly 26
numbers and 26 letters. That's a
total of 156 characters in all.
I'm not entirely sure what they
mean jsut yet. It could be some
sort of lock combination.
                                                            

16.

                       JOHN (INTERRUPTING)
No, no... That doesn't make any
sense. The plates have been
deteriorating ever since you sent
them back.
                                                            
                       MAJ. TOMMEL
Oh... I wasn't aware of that, Dr.
                                                            
                       JOHN
It's not impossible, just highly
improbable. Have there been any
other unusual things going on that
you have heard of from the groud
team, Major?
                                                            
                       MAJ. TOMMEL
No. The ground team hasn't had
anything out of the ordianry to
report yet. Do you think this is
some sort of military manuever,
Dr?
                                                            
                       JOHN
We're not sure... Could be. We'll
know more after we examine your
new findings, Major.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
      (to Tommel)
Major? (pause) Have you deciphered
all of them?
                                                            
                       MAJ. TOMMEL
We've only got all of the First
and part of the Second. I'm
transferring the data down to you
as we speak.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
Well done, Major. I'll have the
good Dr. start reviewing them as
soon as they are received.
Anything further to add?
                                                            
                       MAJ. TOMMEL
No, sir. Not at the moment. We'll
be in touch as soon as we get more
data.
                                                            

17.

                       COL. ANDERSON
(to Tommel)
Okay, stay in touch Major. And be
safe.
                                                            
                       MAJ. TOMMEL
Will do, Col... Tommel out.
                                                            
The image of the Major goes to black. Anderson moves more
icons around to bring the big screen on the floor back to
the view of the planet and its three moons.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
      (to John)
Well, if that's all gentleman...
                                                            
                       JOHN
Thank you, Col. We'll get on it
right away.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
Very well. I'll have Troy transfer
the data as soon as it's received.

Good day, gentleman.
                                                            
As they walk out, Carter stops John in the hallway with a
concerned look on his face.
                                                            
                       CARTER
      (whispering)
A military maneuver? Are we
talking about some sort of global
invasion or something?
                                                            
John heaves a sigh of stress.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (whispering)
It could be... Hell. The
likelihood, in my opinion, is
fairly low at this point. Though,
the timing of the deterioration of
the markings does suggest that the
plates may be some sort of
synchronizing device. But there's
been no movement from any of the
neighboring hostile systems that
we know. I think there's something
else to it. I don't know what --
but my gut says there has to be.
                                                            

18.

There's a muffled gastric gurbling that fills up the
hallway.
                                                            
                       CARTER
      (rubbing his belly)
My gut tells me that it's time to
start heading for the cafeteria
before I eat myself alive!
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (laughing)
I'm with you on that!
                                                            
The camera fades out on the two walking down the hallway.
                                                            
 
INT. JOHN'S OFFICE - DAY
                                                            
John is at his desk lulling over the new data received from
Solaris. The rotating hologram clock reads 3:45 PM Tues....
The monotone clickity-clack of the keys on the keypad is the
only thing heard for a few moments. Then a loud beeping
drags Dr. Mallone out of his work and hones his attention on
D.A.R.C.Y.
                                                            
                       D.A.R.C.Y.
Dr. Mallone.... Urgent
communication from an undisclosed
source. It requires your immediate
attention.

(beep, beep, beep)
                                                            
                       JOHN (UNCERTAIN)
Undisclosed?
(wrinkles his brow in confusion)
Alright, DARCY. Patch it in...
                                                            
A holographic screen takes teh place of DARCY. On the screen
appears the talking head of an older man with a military
issue crew do. He looks as if he has no neck at all.
                                                            
                       NELSON
      (in a calm
       gravelly voice)
Dr. Mallone? Lt. Col. Nelson... US
Marine Corps.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (professional)
Ahh. Col. Nelson... What brings
you this way... so to speak.
                                                            

19.

                       NELSON
I have been informed that the new
info from Solaris may indicate a
hostile move on M-196. Is this so?
                                                            
                       JOHN
(pausing to gather his thoughts
for a moment)

It could mean that -- then again,
it could be something completely
harmless.
                                                            
                       NELSON
      (appearing
       frustrated)
I am a very busy man, Dr. I have
no time for uncertainties.
                                                            
                       JOHN
I do understand that, Col. But, we
just don't have enough information
at the moment to make a definitive
conclusion...
                                                            
                       NELSON
      (interrupting)
I need to have a better answer
than that, Dr. I have to make the
decision in a matter of hours
whether or not I need to dispatch
an entire batallion of spec. op.
marines into the system. Do you
understand my position?
                                                            
                       JOHN
I do, I do... I just received the
same info myself not more than an
hour ago.
                                                            
THe hologram of the Col. rubs his forehead in a worried
manner.
                                                            
                       NELSON
And what's your professional
evaluation of the data?
                                                            
                       JOHN
(sighs in stress) There's a
deterioration of the plates that
may suggest that they are some
sort of timing devise. For what,
I'm not entirely certain.
                                                            

20.

                       NELSON
Humor me, Dr...
                                                            
                       JOHN
Well... it could be a
synchronization device. It could
be just some sort of solar
clock...I..
                                                            
                       NELSON
      (chuckles in
       frustration)
That doesn't really help me one
bit, Dr. You're telling me that
the threat of these things is
somewhere between a teabag and a
timebomb.
                                                            
                       JOHN
I'm just telling you what I've
been able to gather for myself in
the past seventy minutes.
                                                            
                       NELSON
But, you ARE telling me that these
things could be a synch. device?
                                                            
                       JOHN (HESITANT)
MAY-be... Their behavior would
suggest things to support that
theory... but,
                                                            
                       NELSON
      (interrupting
       again)
...BUT, they COULD be. Right?
                                                            
                       JOHN
(sighs) Yes... they COULD be.
                                                            
                       NELSON
Well. That sounds like it's the
best that I'm gonna get for today.
Wouldn't you say, Dr?
                                                            
                       JOHN
That's the most up-to-date info
that I can give you at this
moment, yes.
                                                            

21.

                       NELSON
Then, I'd hate to cut this short,
Dr. But I have some decisions to
make.
                                                            
                       JOHN
I understand, Col. I'm sorry I
couldn't be of more help to you...
                                                            
                       NELSON
...You've done all you can. Good
day, Dr. Mallone.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Good duh...
                                                            
Before he can finish, the hologram is gone and is replaced
again with the image of DARCY.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (sarcastically)
He's a charming man, isn't he?
                                                            
John looks at the Solaris data again. Studying the plates
and their current decryptions.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (to himself)
It doesn't make sense.... Why do
the decryptions end with the
letter X? Are they trying to mark
a spot? Shit! Maybe the Col. is
right!
(leans back in his chair)
Oh shit...
(taps his upper lip with his pen)
But... maybe....
                                                            
He takes the image of the second plate and studies their
markings. Looking to see if maybe the alphabet continues on
this one, he compares the markings.
To no avail. The first symbol on the second plate is
identical t the first mark on the first plate... the letter
A.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Sunnofabitch!
                                                            
John sits there -- studying the images sent down from
Solaris. He's starting to chew on his pen again. A nasty
habit that he hadn't been able to shake from his childhood.
                                                            

22.

                       JOHN
      (to himself)
Tommel said there were...
twenty-six...
                                                            
He closely studies the images.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (looking at two of
       the markings)
Ah hah! These two are actually
numbers. That explains that, but
still... X? Why end the strain on
the letter X?
                                                            
Mallone pummels himself over the images for what seems like
five minutes before another knock comes on his door.
                                                            
                       CARTER
Hey, man.... Woo! You tryin to
pull overtime this month or what,
Mallone?
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (with an annoyed
       look)
Whuh?
                                                            
                       CARTER
It's five o'clock. Time to roll on
outta here! Call it a day, John.
Let's grab a beer or something.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Five?! Already?!
                                                            
He looks at his clock, and sure enough it's five sharp.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Wow!
                                                            
                       CARTER
      (smiling)
Time flies when you're havin fun,
eh Doc?
                                                            
                       JOHN
Yeah (chuckle) guess it does.
(pause)

Let's get outta here, Cart. Before
I need to pitch a tent or
something.
                                                            

23.

John gathers his things and walks with his buddy out the
door toward home.
                                                            
 
EXT. DEEP SPACE - NIGHT
                                                            
There is a distant view of the Earth rotating quickly around
its axis.

LEGEND: T-93...
92...
91...
90....
                                                            
 
EXT. OPERA HOUSE - NIGHT
                                                            
John and his wife Carmen are getting out of their car. A
steady cold rain is coming down on this Saturday night. They
move thru the dimmly lit parking lot toward the Opera House
on the other side of the street.
                                                            
                       CARMEN
      (under their
       umbrella)
Thank you again for this, hon.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Think nothing of it. It's the
least I could do after leaving you
practically alone with the kids
this week.
                                                            
She stops him for a moment and gives him a peck on the lips.
                                                            
                       CARMEN
Let's go! The show starts in five
minutes!
                                                            
The camera fades on the couple jogging in stride under their
umbrella across the street.
                                                            
 
INT. OPERA HOUSE FOYER - NIGHT
                                                            
The camera fades up on John standing outside of a restroom
door. There are a few women waiting in line inpatiently to
relieve themselves. A voice comes over the intercom and
breaks the monotone ambient mumblings of the crowd.
                                                            
                       OPERA HOUSE VOICE (O.C.)
May I have your attention, please.
Intermission will cease in five
            (MORE)

24.

                       OPERA HOUSE VOICE (cont'd)
minutes -- the final act will
begin in five minutes... Thank
you.
                                                            
John is checking his watch... half past eight. Should be
home in time to catch the last quarter of the game. Just
then his wife's hand covers up his watch.
                                                            
                       CARMEN
Ready? We'd better get back before
the last act starts... And don't
worry -- I told the UV to record
the game for you.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (chuckling)
I knew I married you for a reason.
                                                            
She slaps her hubby on the arm playfully as they climb back
up the red velvet staircase to their seats.


The house lights are beginning to dim just as they step in
front of their seats. The curtain opens to reveal the cast
of the Mariage of Figaro as they break into the final act.
                                                            
John is snapped awake by a loud high toned beeping. He looks
down at his watch: 8:42 PM. The fat guys are still at it.
His wife is completely into the whole thing -- reading along
with it in her program.

Beep...beep....beep...

John pulls out a pair of glasses and places them on his
head.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
      (muffled in the
       phone)
John? It's Killion.... I apologize
for disturbing your weekend, but
we have a major problem.
                                                            
John places a small clear piece of film across his adam's
apple and presses a small blue button on the arm of his
glasses. The digitized vision of Killion appears in front of
John's glasses.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (to the digitized
       image of Killion)
What's the problem, Dr?
                                                            

25.

                       DR. KILLION
Solaris.... 196... They're --
they're both gone.
                                                            
Carmen touches John's sleeve.
                                                            
                       CARMEN
      (mouthing the
       words)
Is everything alright?
                                                            
John skakes his head and then re-engages Killion.
                                                            
                       JOHN
What do you mean... gone?
Exploded? Attacked? What?
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
God, John... We have no idea at
this point. This could be a huge
disaster... The planet, the team,
four thousand Marines... Christ.
                                                            
John lowers his head and rubs his temples with his
forefingers.
                                                            
                       JOHN
Could be just a telescopic
malfunction...
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
      (shaking his head)
We've verified it with eight
different scopes in two different
systems... John, you'd better get
over to the Observatory, A-SAP...
                                                            
 
INT. OBSERVATORY - NIGHT
                                                            
John is jogging down the main corridor of the Green Bank
Observatory. Most of the lights are off... plenty of empty
offices on a weekend. Four armed Marines file past him
double-time. One is shouting something about "DefCon 3" and
"orders from the President requesting a full scan of the
system and a subsequent S&D." John diodn't know much about
Marineese, but from his extensive relations with other Armed
Service perssonel, he knew "S&D" was a "seek and destroy".
Not good.

As John makes his way to the end of the corridor, he hears
Killion's booming voice echoing thru the telescope room in a
heated argument with someone.
                                                            

26.

                       DR. KILLION
      (ECHOING)
Damn it, Col! We can't just go
around killing every other
civilization that we encounter!
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
      (ECHOING)
If they are responsible for
OBLITERATING four thousand of MY
MARINES... then may their god show
mercy -- 'cause I sure as shit
won't!
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
      (flustered)
This...this just isn't rational!
You could inadvertantly initiate
an inter-planetary war!
                                                            
Col. Anderson slams his open muscular hand down on the
nearby desk so hard that it echos like a thunderclap in the
open room.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
      (gritting his
       teeth)
THEY already HAVE, Doctor!
                                                            
                       JOHN
Well, uhhh.... Dr. Killion, you
requested my prescence....
                                                            
Anderson turns his head in disgust. Dr. Killion beacons John
over to his desk.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
      (in a lower tone)
John... You need to see this to
fully BELIEVE it.
                                                            
John moves over to the huge chrome cylinder stretching out
into the night and places his right eye behind the small
eyepiece on the side.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (squinting his
       eyes to refocus)
Whuhh? Sweet Jesus!! Nothing....
the whole planet's just
disappeared!
                                                            

27.

Killion just nods his head in that "yup, been there done
that" sort of way.
                                                            
                       JOHN
How could 196 just VANISH?! (his
lips stammer to find the words)
I...I --
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
      (moving toward
       John)
I know, John. Nothing adds up to
me right now either. But Capt.
America over here still thinks
that the best alternative is to go
out and seek vengance.
                                                            
John moves over to engage Col. Anderson who is now in a
heated quiet discussion with two other militants.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (to Anderson)
Col.... Who or what do you believe
is responsible for this?
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
(to soldier)
...and get me those grids....
(turns to face John)

I'm sorry Dr?
                                                            
                       JOHN
Who or what is responsible for
this act?
                                                            
The Col sighs and rubs his gruff chin in a pensive manner.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
We've been watching the nearby
system of Holanth... particularly
the planet Nohga. The Nohgans have
been after 196 for decades now. It
was a vast resource of a known
element in their weapons systems.
                                                            
                       JOHN
So.... you believe the Noggins...
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
      (correcting
       phonetically)
NOE - guns....
                                                            

28.

                       JOHN
... right... that they blew the
planet up in spite of he fact that
they couldn't have it?
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
That's correct, Dr. The Nohgans
are a barbaric race. They are
particularly greedy when it comes
to hoarding their weapons
development secrets.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (rubbing his
       forehead
       forcefully)
But .... what if --- if it were
something even outside of that?
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
Like what?
                                                            
                       JOHN
I'm not sure just yet, but....
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
Right now.... theories won't do,
Dr. THe President wants to make it
CRYSTAL CLEAR that no one on any
planet can just kill four thousand
human beings and not pay the
piper.
                                                            
                       JOHN
But, that's all you're going on
yourselves, Col.... theories.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
What if I'm right?
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (defiant)
What if you're wrong?
                                                            
The Col moves toward the door out of the Observatory.
                                                            
                       COL. ANDERSON
      (turning to face
       John)
Well, Doctor.... if you want to
prove the rest of us on the Hill
wrong, then you'd better make it
quick. The Galactic Assult Wave is
            (MORE)

29.

                       COL. ANDERSON (cont'd)
ordered to move out next week.
That'll put them in the orbit of
Nohga in about two months.

I hope for everyone's sake that
you're right Dr. Mallone --
really, I do.
                                                            
John turns back toward the scope. Killion rushes over to
engage him.
                                                            
                       DR. KILLION
John, you don't think the tablets
have something to do with this do
you?
                                                            
John ignores him and bolts for the exit.
                                                            
                       JOHN
      (echoing down the
       halls as he runs
       out)
Send me EVERYTHING you have on the
last known communications from the
away team!
                                                            
 
EXT. DEEP SPACE - NIGHT
                                                            
The Earth is spinning at a rapid pace upon its axis....

LEGEND: T-85..... 84... 83... 82...81....
                                                            
 
EXT. ARCHAEOLOGICAL DIG SITE, GHANA - DAY
                                                            
An older but still very attractive blonde is crouched over a
lazer grid on a large patch of earth. She pulls a small
brush out of her kakhi shorts and begins dusting off a small
rock still half-buried in the ground.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Hmm.... very interesting. If the
Atlantian civilization DID have
trade contacts on this side of the
ocean, we should be in the right
neck of the woods.
                                                            
She continues to dig and brush very gently around the object
and it slowly begins to take form. First.... a small face.
Then a leg, and another.... Finally, Sharon Conor pulls
something out of the ground that she's only been able to
theorize at best for the last seven years.
                                                            

30.

                       DR. CONOR
Oh, my Lord!
                                                            
She gingerly places the small black figurine of a long
forgotten warrior in her hands.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
      (Waving
       frantically)
Pascal....! Come quick! This is
it! This is the site!!
                                                            
A tall, slender built man comes charging over to her section
of the grid. His thick native accent seems to drip off each
phrase.
                                                            
                       PASCAL
What is it, Sharon?
                                                            
She holds up her hands as if giving a holy offering to the
gods.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Just look! (pause) Oh, it's better
than I imagined!
                                                            
As the tall native Ghanian stares down at her open hands,
his lower jaw drops wide open.
                                                            
                       PASCAL
I--- I wouldn't believe it if I
weren't here in person! Is it..?
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Yes! A guardian statuette. The
Atlantians used these to watch
over their most secret of
possessions! There's something big
around here.... very BIG!
                                                            
A muffled shout from some one hundred meters away snaps them
both back into reality. It's Suzie, one of Conor's Grad
students...
                                                            
                       SUZIE
      (In a British
       accent)
Dr. Conor....? You might want to
get over here right away!
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Suzie.....? DON'T MOVE!! I'm
coming!
                                                            

31.

Sharon and Pascal run to Suzie's location as fast as their
fatigued limbs will carry them.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
What is it, Suszie? What have you
found?
                                                            
Suzie brushes away some of the loose dirt covering the
little black stone statue.
                                                            
                       PASCAL
Another one?!
                                                            
Sharon pulls the small statuette out of it resting place.
Her guffawed expression sums up their mutual emotions.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Two figurines...? Within 100
meters of one another?!
                                                            
                       PASCAL
Better yet, Dr.....
                                                            
He turns over the first figurine and rubs the moist dirt
away to reveal a very faint gold archaeic symbol engraved in
its back. Sharon turns hers over and finds a similiar
symbol. She moves her figurine closer to compare the
markings, and as she does, their engravings glow more
intensely as they draw closer to one another.
                                                            
                       PASCAL
I'm not sure what these symbols
mean, but they are DEFINITELY
significant!
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
      (standing up)
We need to analyze these
immediately! Suzie?!
                                                            
                       SUZIE
Dr.?
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Mark these findings on the map...
and round up the other interns!
Watch this area like hawks!
                                                            
The athletic doctor and her lanky sidekick hustle off toward
the cluster of tents some 100 yards off in the distance.
                                                            
 

32.

EXT. DIG SITE HQ - NIGHT
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Something's just not adding up!
                                                            
Sharon's mane of golden hair is cascading over the large
hologram map of the dig site spread out on her oversized
table. A small blue lamp illuminates its details.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
      (poking at the 3D
       map)
One here... and one here... The
most logical pattern would be....
                                                            
Conor uses her laser pen to etch out a triangle around a
mountainous area to the west of her camp.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Then we should find another one...

(she uses the hologram map to zoom
in on the region to the north of
the mountains)

...here.
                                                            
Pascal glides in through the flapping canvas doorway to her
tent. He removes his large-brimmed hat and wipes the
perspiration from his glistening forehead.
                                                            
                       PASCAL
Any luck, Doctor?
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
If I am correct in this (she
gestures to the map) then we
should search the area to the
north of this cluster of
mountains.
                                                            
                       PASCAL
      (leaning in over
       the map)
You have yet to give us a reason
to doubt you, Sharon. If you say
it is there... then it must be.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
      (blushing)
Thank you, old friend. Tell you
what...
                                                            

33.

The Ghanaian perks up -- awaiting the doctor's suggestion.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
... Round up a three person party
to come with us to the area
tomorrow. We'll leave at first
light. If I'm wrong.... the
university and the board of
directors can kiss my dimpled
behind.
                                                            
 
EXT. GRID MARKER 131 - DAY
                                                            
Dr. Conor, Pascal, and the rest of her team walk into the
heart of the golden sunrise. A cluster of large mountains
stands firm to their left in the distance.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
What a glorious morning!
                                                            
                       PASCAL
Indeed it is, doctor.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
(she takes in a deep breath, and
exhales)

The brisk fresh air just makes
you... feel alive, doesn't it?
                                                            
Conor stops and pulls out a small hand-held hologram GPS
map.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Just a few more paces...
                                                            
After five more steps, her little screen beeps.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Right! (tosses her small backpack
to the ground) Now - let's set up
the markers and commence the
excavation.
                                                            
Conor pulls a pyramid-shaped oject out of her pack and sets
it on the dusty earth before her. She presses four buttons
on either side of the object, and as she does four blue
lines of light bolt out atop the earth.
                                                            
                       DR. CONOR
Pascal..? Take one person and
start in the norhtwestern corner.
                                                            

34.

The tall Ghanaian nods in accord and waves to a petite
redhead to follow him. The two head for a small blue beam of
light that now stands erect in the northwestern boundary of
the quadrant.
                                                            


FADE OUT.


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