‘Gifted’ continued...

Written by Dianne Messina Stanely & James Stanley; Directed by Kevin Dowling; (as "fanscribed" by Janet)

Pictures for "Gifted"

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Scene: brief exterior of Nikki’s foster home. Interior of foster home with foster parents in living room talking.

Robin: How can we just give up?

Michael: She’s a good kid. There’s got to be some way to reach her.

Robin: She doesn’t want to be reached, Michael. She’s made that abundantly clear.

Michael: If we don’t take her with us to Denver, she’s going to go back to the home. And we both know - - we both know that at her age, her chances of getting placed are pretty slim.

Robin: And that tears me up, Michael, it does, but we - - we did not create this problem.

Michae: We wanted a chi - - we want a child.

Robin: The question is do we want this child? For that matter, does she want us? She certainly doesn’t seem to like it here.

Michael: If we just had a little more time.

Robin: But we don’t. Mrs. Keller called this morning. If we’re going to adopt she needs to start the paperwork now. Michael, can you honestly say that you’re ready to make a lifelong commitment to this child?

Foster Father: I’ll call the agency in the morning.


(Nikki is on the stairs above listening to their conversation.)

Nikki: Like I care.

Scene: Brief exterior of McGinty’s. Switches to interior. Gary and Marissa are seated at a table while Marissa wraps Gary’s wrist in a bandage.

Marissa: It was a picture?

Gary: It was a picture of a plane on the side of the truck. And I'm telling you, she knew it was going to hit me.

Marissa: Lucky guess?

Gary: Marissa, she asked me if I stopped that tanker truck from hitting the school bus. Why would she ask about an accident that never happened?

Marissa: I don’t know, Gary. Some people are just sensitive to their environment. You really think that she’s clairvoyant? You really believe that she knows what’s going to happen before it happens?

Gary: I don’t know how to explain it. I mean, four years ago I’d have said no, but here I am. I’m the guy who gets tomorrow’s (slight pause) newspaper today. Who’s to say that she can’t see into the future as well.

Marissa: Poor kid.

Gary: What?

Marissa: It’s hard enough for you to know the future, Gary. Just imagine what it would be like for a child.

(Gary gets up from the table and picks up the first aid supplies.)

Gary: Excuse me. Thank you. (Leaves Marissa at the table thinking.)

Scene: Nikki’s Bedroom. She appears to be sleeping. There’s a knock on the door.

Michael: Nikki? Honey?

(As the door closes behind him Nikki gets out of bed and crosses the room to the window. She climbs out and reaches back in for Cat.)

Nikki: Hey, Cat.


Nikki: Let’s go. I’m going whether you come or not.


Scene: Gary’s loft. He’s still asleep. Clock radio comes on. He has difficulty in getting is eyes to open and stay open as the light hits them.

Male DJ: Backed up on South Lakeshore from Route 55 all the way to west Pershing.

(Gary crosses the room and opens the door. No paper and no Cat. He looks very surprised.)

Male DJ: Some good news on Route 80 if you’re heading west - - They’ve cleared that van out of the way, and thing should start flowing shortly. If you’re wondering what’s clogging up the north - -

Scene: Exterior of a large church. Scene changes to interior shot of Nikki sleeping on one of the pews.

(Cat meows)

(Newspaper thumps)

Nikki: Hey, kitty. What you got there? A newspaper? Where’d you get that?

(Door opens)

Priest: You look tired, sister.

Nun: I was up late, Father. A few of the sisters got a tad rowdy last night during our weekly canasta game.

Nikki (in a whisper to Cat): We got to go

Scene: Exterior of Nikki’s house. Gary rings the doorbell.

Michael: Yes?

Gary: Hello. I was looking for my cat, a little orange cat.

Michael: I’m sorry. I haven’t seen a cat.

Gary: He was here yesterday with a girl - so tall (indicates Nikki’s size), red hair.

Michael: That sounds like Nikki, but - - Hold on, hold on. Hey, excuse me, did Nikki mention anything to you about a cat?

Robin: No.

Michael: Sorry.

Gary: Could you ask her, please?

Robin: She’s getting ready for school.

Gary: Well, I know this sounds a little odd, but it’s very important.

Robin: I’ll ask her.

Gary: Thank you.

Foster Mother knocks on the door to Nikki’s room.

Robin: Nikki? (Opens door and finds Nikki gone) Michael! She’s not here.

Michael: Don’t even tell me. (Gary is still standing in the doorway.) She has a habit of running off.

Robin: Only this time, she took clothes with her, Michael.

Michael: Oh, God. You don’t think she heard us talking last night about leaving and not taking her, do you?

Gary: You don’t mean to Switzerland, do you?

Michael: Switzerland?

Gary: She mentioned private school in Switzerland.

Robin: She told you she was going to Switzerland?

Michael: What else did she tell you?

Gary: She said her parents died in a yachting accident.

Michael: Nikki’s parents died in a car crash right here in town about three years ago.

Robin: Her father was drunk.

Michael: She was in the back seat. It’s a miracle she wasn’t killed.

Robin: I’ll go call the police and tell them she’s missing again.

Michael: They’ve heard the name Nikki Kurasek so often they’re not even going to bother.

Gary: Did you say her parents’ name was Kurasek?

Michael: Yeah. You know them?

Gary: No, uh…

Robin: Michael, come on.

Michael: Excuse me. I hope you find your cat.

(Gary searches for Nikki in park.)

Gary: Nikki? Nikki? Come on, kid. Where are you?


Scene: Exterior of church. Nikki and Cat sitting outside. Nikki offers Cat something to eat.

Nikki: Want some? (Cat leaves.) Hey. Come back, cat. (Nikki grabs pack & follows. Gary is talking to passersby. Nikki and Cat run into him.)

Gary: She has red hair - -

Nikki: You.

Gary: Nikki? (Nikki starts to leave) Nikki, wait, please.

Nikki: How’d you know my name?

Gary: I know a lot about you.

Nikki: Like what?

Gary: I know you’re not going to Switzerland.

Nikki: Big wow.

Gary: And I think you have a secret.

Nikki: What do you mean?

Gary: You know what’s going to happen, don’t you Nikki? That little boy who fell from the tree, you knew that was going to happen, didn’t you? And the tanker truck with the bus - - you knew that was going to happen.

Nikki: Who are you?

Gary: I’m just a friend.

Nikki: You’re not my friend. (Runs away and goes inside the church.)

Gary: Nikki. Nikki?

Nikki: Leave me alone.

Gary: Look, Nikki, I understand.

Nikki: You don’t understand anything. Get away from me.

Gary: I know how difficult it is having a gift, Nikki.

Nikki: Gift? You call this a gift? Man, you’re even dumber than I thought.

Gary: What I mean is - -

Nikki: It’s a curse. I hate it. I wish I were dead.

Gary: No, you don’t.

Nikki: Yes, I do. It’s what I deserve.

Gary: It’s what you deserve?

Nikki: You don’t get it, do you?

Gary: No.

Nikki: My parents are dead because of me.

Gary: Your parents - - they died in a car crash.

Nikki: But I saw it. I knew it was going to happen.

Gary: No, what happened to your parents had - -

Nikki: Stop. You want to know what happened, I’ll tell you.

Gary: All right. All right, I’m listening.

(Nikki drops her pack in a pew and sits down. Flashback three years to Nikki and her parents in their car.)

Nikki: It was three years ago. They were taking me to get pizza, and I was really happy because they had remembered it was my birthday. My dad bought me a present.

Sal Kurasek: Bet you can’t guess what’s in there.

Nikki: A Game Boy.

Sal: Son of a - - the little brat’s been snooping in the closet.

Nikki: No, I haven’t.

Sal: Was I talking to you?

Nikki (to Gary): I started to get this sick feeling like something bad was going to happen, but I was too afraid to say anything. Then, out of the blue, somebody stopped us. I thought we’d be safe.

Sal (to stranger): Hey! Nobody tells me when I can and can’t drive.

Nikki (to Gary): My dad drove off again. I knew we were going to crash.

Nikki (to dad): Don’t turn that way. It’s not safe. Go straight.

Sal: What do you know?

Nikki: Daddy, please.

Sal: Shut up, you mouthy little brat!

(tires squeal and car crashes)

Gary: Nikki, it wasn’t your fault.

Nikki: It was.

Gary: No, it wasn’t. Your father - - he was drunk.

Nikki: If I had kept quiet - -

Gary: He was drinking too much. He was out of control. He shouldn’t have been driving the car.

Nikki: How do you know? You weren’t there.

Gary: Yes, I was.

Scene: Flashback to Gary with paper setting up barrier in roadway. Paper headline: DRUNK DRIVER KILLS SEVEN

(Horn Honking)

Sal: What’s going on? (Tires squeal as he stops in time to avoid hitting Gary)

Gary: Sal Kurasek?

Mr. Kurasek: Who wants to know?

Gary: Uh, I’m, uh, well, I’m with the Chicago Safe Driving Association.

Sal: Never heard of it.

Gary: Well, that’s because we’re new. I’m just here to get you home safely.

Sal: It’s covered pal.

Gary: Actually Mr. Kurasek, I don’t think you’re in any condition to be driving.

Sal: Oh, yeah? Watch me. Hey! (Gary reaches in and takes keys from ignition.)

Gary: Look, it’s for your own good.

Sal: Yeah, so’s the butt-kickin’ you’re going to get. Give me those keys! (Gary backs away from the car. Nikki fastened her seatbelt.)

Sal (to wife): Hey! Give me your keys.

Mrs. Kurasek: Sal, I can drive.

Sal: Hear me? Give me the damn keys!

Mrs. Kurasek: Sal.

Sal: Hey! Nobody tells me when I can and can’t drive.

Gary: At least put on your seat belt.

Sal: Mind your own business. Now quit your yapping and get outta my way.

(Sal drives off. Gary’s paper shows headline: PARENTS KILLED IN DRUNK DRIVING ACCIDENT)

Scene: Interior of the church. Present time.

Nikki: It was you. You knew. And James in the tree - - you knew about that, too, and the school bus. You see things, too.

Gary: Not exactly.

Nikki: But you know. When something bad’s going to happen, you know.

Gary: Sometimes.

Nikki: Only you fix it.

Gary: No, not always. Look, I couldn’t have stopped your father any more than you could have. I’m sorry.

Nikki: But they were my parents.

Gary: Look, Nikki, sometimes no matter how hard you try, no matter how much you know, you can’t make these things come out the way you want them to, and you got to understand that.

Nikki: I’m trying.

Gary: You are not responsible for your parents’ death. You’re a good kid.

Nikki: No, I’m not.

Gary: Yes, you are. Look, knowing what’s going to happen before it happens - - Nikki, that’s a big responsibility.

Nikki: I didn’t ask for it.

Gary: And neither did I, but you can’t run away from it. I’ve tried. I know that. Please believe me. You can look at this thing as a curse, and that’s exactly what it’s going to be - - a curse - - but if you can look at it as a gift, if you can look at it as a way of helping people and changing people’s lives, then - - well, then it’s a blessing. At least, that’s what I’ve found. It just takes a little while to get used to.

Nikki: You really think I’m a good kid?

Gary: Yeah, I think you’re a good kid. (Reaches over to hug Nikki.)

(Cat meows)

Gary: Look at that, see? So does he.

Nikki: Kitty.

(Cat sitting on nearby chair is purring.)

Gary: Nikki?

Nikki: Hmm?

Gary: When you woke up this morning, was he there?

Nikki: Yes.

Gary: There wasn’t a paper also, was there?

Nikki: Yeah, why?

(They look around for the missing paper.)

Gary: Are you sure this is where it was?

Nikki: I’m sure.

(Snoring is heard from someplace close by. Following the sound Gary & Nikki find the nun asleep in one of the pews with the paper over her face.)

Gary: Thank you, sister. (Retrieves his paper.)

Nikki: What is it? What’s wrong:

Gary: I’ve got to get over to 4654 Cannon Road. (Headline reads: MAN DIES IN BUILDING COLLAPSE)

Nikki: That’s my old apartment.

Gary: What?

Nikki: That’s where I used to live. What’s wrong?

Gary: Nothing.

Nikki: Tell me. (Puts her hand on Gary’s arm.) Oh, no. Michael. It’s my foster father, isn’t it?

Gary: Come on. Come on.

Scene: Exterior of condemned building.

Michael: Oh, God. This is Nikki’s old place.

Robin: It used to be. It’s condemned.

Michael: Nikki!

Robin: Michael, nobody’s in there.

Michael: Yeah, which makes it the perfect hiding place for a kid.

Robin: But, Michael…

Michael: Honey, we have to check

(They enter the building.)

Michael: Nikki! (To wife) Wait for me.

Robin: Michael.

Michael: Nikki?

Robin: Honey, be careful.

(Michael tries a door)

Michael: It’s stuck.

(Gary & Nikki arrive at the building.)

Gary: Mr. Fielding!

Nikki: Michael!

Robin: It’s Nikki.

Michael: Nikki, where are you?

Robin: Michael! Mich - - Ohh! (Floor gives way under Michael’s weight)

Robin: Help! Help! Someone!

Michael: I can’t pull up!

Robin: Michael!

(Michael grunts with the effort)

(Gary & Nikki arrive at the scene.)

Gary: Hold on. Come on. Come on. Come on, give me your arm. Come on. Come on.

(With some effort manages to pull Michael up to safety. Nikki grabs hold and hugs him and her foster mother.)

Nikki: Michael, I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry.

Michael: It’s okay, Honey. It’s okay.

Nikki: Don’t send me back. I’ll be good, I promise. I'll be good.

Michael: You want to stay with us? (To Gary) Thank you.

Scene: Various shots of the city and then Nikki’s foster home. Changes from night to day.

Robin: Okay, that’s everything. Oh, except for the snacks.

Nikki: I’ll get them Mom.

Robin: Gary, thanks again for everything. The change in Nikki, it’s - - It’s a miracle.

Michael: She smiles, she talks.

Robin: We can’t shut her up.

Michael: She’s happy.

Gary: I’m glad everything worked out for all of you.

Michael: Whatever it was that you said to her, I - -

Gary: I think she just needed to forgive herself for a few things before she let anyone else in.

Nikki: All set.

Michael: Thanks.

Gary (to Nikki): I think there’s someone else that wants to say good bye to you there. (Indicates Cat sitting on the lawn.)

Nikki: Cat. Take care. Okay, Kitty, Hey.

Gary: So, uh, you, uh, said anything about…

Nikki: I’m waiting for the right time, but I will. Thanks, Gary.

Gary: What are friends for?

Nikki: I didn’t know till I met you. I’m going to miss you. (Hugs Gary)

Gary: Well I’ll tell you what kid. Why don’t you give me a call sometime?

Nikki: We’ll see each other again.

Gary: Well, I hope so.

Nikki: I know so.

Gary: You do, huh? There’s not anything that you want me to know about by chance?

Nikki: Unh-Unh.

Michael: Sweetheart, time to go.

Nikki: Bye.

Gary: You take care of yourself.


Nikki gets in van. Gary waves as they leave and watches them drive off.


Many thanks to Janet for sharing her fanscription of "Gifted" – Thank you!

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