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CAMERON'S CABIN ... part 2


[EXTERIOR FOREST, TREE LINE - GREEN BRANCHES - DAY

After we HOLD, we realize Chingachgook's been there all along. Hawkeye and Uncas join him where the branches meet the ground. Smoke drifts through the trees. Hawkeye sees and dips his head, then looks again ...

EXTERIOR CAMERON CABIN - WIDE - DAY

Burned, smoldering, having fallen in on itself. TRACK LEFT past what was the doorway. A dead child's hand protruding from the ruin. A fragment of a dress. Charred and smoldering wood. John Cameron's body in the wreckage. And then, through the collapsed posts and timbers, Hawkeye, Chingachgook and Uncas have advanced and are seeing what we've just seen; and then Cora and Alice.

ALICE

approaches and is frozen in horror. Cora shields her from the sight. Cora is affected but confronts it directly.]

HEYWARD: [O.S.] Anything to be done?

[UNCAS

returns from under one part of the wreckage, ashen, stoic, as they all are. We know the degree of their inner pain.]

UNCAS: All dead ...

[HAWKEYE

bends over a moccasin print that Chingachgook's examining. They look at each other grimly. Heyward joins them.]

HEYWARD: Who were these people?

HAWKEYE: [re: print] Ottawa!

HEYWARD: Excuse me ...

CHINGACHGOOK: [to Hawkeye] Ottawa.

[UNCAS

enters, very careful where he places his feet ... Hawkeye gestures to Heyward to stay where he is: on the periphery with the women.]

UNCAS: Mirrors ... tools ... clothes ... all inside.

HAWKEYE: [to Chingachgook] Movin' fast, not able to carry much ... this was a war party?

[Chingachgook nods confirmation and indicates a direction in Mohican. The significance is very ominous to them. We don't know why yet. Chingachgook starts away ...]

HEYWARD: Let us look after them ...

[He starts approaching the bodies.]

CHINGACHGOOK: Leave them.

[Heyward stops. Hawkeye and Uncas follow Chingachgook, leaving the cabin.]

CORA: [hasn't moved] Though they are strangers, they are at least entitled to a Christian burial!

HAWKEYE: [shaking his head] Let us go, miss.

CORA: I will not. I have seen the face of war before, Mr. Poe, but never war made on women and children. And almost as cruel is your indifference.

[Hawkeye turns back and rapidly approaches her. She takes a step back, fearful.]

HAWKEYE: [contained] Miss Munro. [pause] They are not strangers .... And they stay as they lay ...!

[CORA

realizes Hawkeye knew these people and is deeply affected. She also realizes for the first time this is a whole new world with dynamics and complexities, behavior and rhythms she doesn't understand. He turns away from her and walks on. She hesitates a moment.

WIDE ON THE SMALL CLEARING IN FRONT OF THE FARMHOUSE

as Chingachgook and Hawkeye, extremely alert and cradling their cocked flintlocks, walk to camera, eyes sweeping the forest perimeter; they're followed by Cora, Heyward helping Alice and Uncas as rearguard.

The ruined cabin and the dead dream of a family smolders behind them.

CUT TO ...]

The BURIAL GROUND


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