Sc 1 Sc 1
ADA (VO - Scs 2 to 7)
The voice you hear is not my
speaking voice, but my mind's
I have not spoken since I was
six years old. No one knows
why, not even me. My father
says it is a dark talent and
the day I take it into my head
to stop breathing will be my
Today he married me to a man
I've not yet met. Soon my
daughter and I shall join him
in his own country. My husband
said my muteness does not
bother him. He writes and hark
God loves dumb creatures,
so why not he!
Were good he had God's patience
for silence affects everyone in
the end. The strange thing is I
don't think myself silent, that
is, because of my piano. I
shall miss it on the journey.
Sc 2 EXT SCOTTISH FIELD NEAR HOUSEDAY Sc 2
A woman in a dark crepe Victorian dress sits leaning against a tree,
her hands cover her face, around her neck she wears a writing pad. She
crosses a field with large bare trees, in the far background stands a
3 storey stone house.
Sc 3 INT SCOTTISH HOUSE CORRIDOR DAY Sc 3
A small girl roller skates down a dimly lit corridor. A parlour maid
looks down the hall where the girl has disappeared.
Sc 4 INT SCOTTISH HOUSE DRAWING ROOMDAY Sc 4
Three men wearing long grey aprons are fitting the packing for a
piano. On one of the men's arms is a tattoo of a whale in a wild sea.
Sc 5 EXT SCOTTISH HOUSE GROUNDS DAY Sc 5
The girl wearing her skates sits on a small black pony. An old man is
pulling it, but it won't move. (In the background, another aspect of
the grey stone house.)
Sc 6 INT SCOTTISH HOUSE FLORA'S BEDROOM NIGHTSc 6
The woman lifts back the sheets from the bottom of the sleeping girl's
bed. She is still wearing her skates. The woman cuts through the laces
and removes the boots. One disembodied skate rolls across the room.
Sc 7 INT SCOTTISH HOUSE DRAWING ROOMNIGHT Sc 7
The woman stands at a window lit by moonlight. Her skin appears
luminescently white. She touches the wooden window frame, the curtain,
the objects on the window sill, her mind abstracted, her hands
unconsciously performing a farewell. Turning from the window she moves
to a square piano crowded by packing boxes. In the dim light she
begins to play strongly. Her face strains, she is utterly involved,
unaware other own strange guttural sounds that form an eerie
accompaniment to the music.
An old maid in night-dress looks in. Abruptly the woman stops playing.
The emotion leaves her face, it whitens and seems solid like a wall.
CUT TO BLACK:
Sc 8 EXT UNDERWATER BEACH DAY Sc 8
Under water a long boat passes overhead, its oars breaking the
Sc 9 EXT BEACH DAY Sc 9
Amidst a riotous sea a woman, ADA, is carried to shore on the
shoulders of five seamen. Her large Victorian skirt spreads across the
men's arms and backs, on her head a black bonnet, around her neck her
pad and pen. We should be forgiven if this woman seems a sacrificial
offering as the bay they carry her to is completely uninhabited. A
black sand backs on to an endless rise of dense native bush.