February - Nick Nwaogu - ebook
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In February, together, Sergeant Femi Kolawole and investigative journalist Chioma Okafor solves Emeka's Valentine-day murder, and on doing so, Chioma is exposed to Femi's heroic personality, which makes her eventually fall in love with him. The Plot: Chioma Okafor, a young investigative journalist, is pressured by her over-ambitious mother into an unwanted romantic relationship with Uche, a young sophisticated university lecturer. Chioma yields to her mother's pressure, hoping she would eventually fall in love with Uche as her mother assured, but she never did. On a Valentine date with Uche, Chioma gets a glimpse of what her relationship has been missing, as she feels love for the first time with Emeka, a handsome stranger who's unfortunately expecting a baby with Amara, a girl who Uche used to date in university. Uche turns a relationship that he intended to blow up into an engagement on Valentine's day, into a blood bath before midnight. Chioma who survives the near-death experience, narrates her Valentine dilemma to Femi, a clever Police Sergeant. The Twist: Everybody thinks Uche died that night, but a strange text message sent from Chioma's phone to Emeka, triggers a series of twisted events, which proves that the jealous and malicious Uche is still alive and in the wind, and that the life of Chioma is hanging down by a thin thread. The ultimate question is: 'Since Uche is alive, then who is the man laying lifeless in the mortuary?' Chioma is certainly not pleased with the answer. Femi forcefully becomes Chioma's personal bodyguard, while he hunts down Uche, an innocent-looking man who Femi had met a day ago and poorly judged. Follow Femi as he uncovers this intriguing murder mystery that nobody even knew happened. The Play: The screenplay starts with a scene of a couple whose faces aren't revealed to the screen, laying MOTIONLESS in a wrecked car, covered in their own blood, and ends in a conference room, as Chioma calls Femi to tell him how she feels about him. February is a unique blend of romance, comedy, suspense, and adventure. A beautifully crafted story of love, jealousy, betrayal, conspiracy, and ambition.

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Nick Nwaogu

February

A Screenplay

BookRix GmbH & Co. KG80331 Munich

Title Page

"FEBRUARY"

––––––––

A screenplay for a feature film

Draft 1 by

Nick Nwaogu

Copyright Page

While every precaution has been taken in the preparation of this book, the publisher assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions, or for damages resulting from the use of the information contained herein.

FEBRUARY

First edition. March 12, 2017.

Copyright © 2017 Nick Nwaogu.

Written by Nick Nwaogu.

10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

Also By Nick Nwaogu

Also by Nick Nwaogu

The Almost Kiss

Odd Family Out

February

Watch for more at Nick Nwaogu’s site.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Title Page

Copyright Page

Also By Nick Nwaogu

Dedication

February

Further Reading: The Almost Kiss

Also By Nick Nwaogu

About the Author

Dedication

 

For John Nwogu.

And for my beloved mother, Chinonye Nwogu.

With so much love.

February

“FEBRUARY”

FADE IN:

EXT. LEKKI-EPE EXPRESSWAY - NIGHT

An expensive grey SUV is roughly parked inches away from a white commercial two-storey building. The vehicle is COMPLETELY wrecked -- with a shattered windscreen, broken headlights, minor dents and scratches to the doors, deflated tyres, and a bonnet RIPPED open, revealing a running engine oozing out thick black fumes. The air-bags are blown open.

Screen Caption: FEBRUARY 14, 2016 11:01 PM

A Couple, whose faces aren’t revealed to the Screen, lay MOTIONLESS in the car, covered in their own blood.

DISSOLVE TO:

EXT. LAGOS ISLAND - SERIES OF ESTABLISHING SHOTS

EXT. ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL - MORNING - ESTABLISHING

Establishing shot of St. Nicholas House -- a white fourteen-storey mixed-use high-rise building. The private hospital spans the first five floors of the commercial building.

Screen Caption: FEBRUARY 15, 2016 11:32 AM (PRESENT DAY)

Screen Caption: ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL, LAGOS-ISLAND

Private vehicles, commercial tricycles, and YELLOW cabs with BLACK horizontal stripes painted across their sides, pry SPEEDILY and dangerously along the busy Campbell Street, linking to the main entrance of the building.

RECEPTIONIST (O.S.)

You may need to come back later, sir. The patient is stable and responding to treatment, but she isn’t awake yet.

FEMI (O.S.)

Don’t worry I will wait.

An EMPTY white ambulance, completely buried in the faint shadow of the tall building, is PARKED on the tarred road of the Street, and very close to the entrance of the outpatient clinic on the ground floor. Female nurses in clean uniform are outside the building, heading for the entrance, chitchatting with one another and laughing.

There’s a large blue signboard just above the main entrance, which reads: “ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL”.

INT. RECEPTION HALL, ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL - CONTINUOUS

A NEAT, ORDERLY and somewhat QUIET king-size room.

RECEPTIONIST (O.S.)

It may take several hours.

FEMI (O.S.)

It’s alright, I’ve got all day. Just don’t forget to let me know when she’s awake.

An old lady, finely-wrinkled, probably in her mid-70s, completely grey-haired, wearing an old-fashion eye glasses with a black plastic frame and thick large lenses, is being pushed across the Screen, on a wheel chair, by a young female NURSE, who’s neatly dressed in a sparkling-clean white uniform.

RECEPTIONIST (O.S.)

Okay, sir. Please do have a seat.

We arrive at a dashingly-handsome gentleman, definitely in his early-30s, NEATLY dressed in a clean Nigeria Police uniform, blue shirt and black trouser, essentially decorated. The three red ‘V’s on his short sleeves indicate that the young chap is a SERGEANT in the Nigeria Police Force.

The Officer is RESTLESSLY seated on one of the many benches where families of patients are IMPATIENTLY waiting -- some of them are in GRIEF, others are in TEARS, but many of them are overwhelmed with ANXIETY, without any verbal interaction with anyone.

On one of the benches is a gentleman on a blue shirt and a grey trouser, swiping the screen of a sleek tablet, with his eyes glued to the screen. Next to him is an exhausted lady dressed in a native purple attire, dozing off. Behind them is a robust woman dressed in Ankara, speaking to herself in despair.

There is a vending machine at one corner of the room filled with wrapped foods and bottled drinks. Next to the vending machine is a bronze sculpture of the Late Nigerian gynecologist, obstetrician, and federal health minister, Moses Majekodunmi -- the founder of the hospital. In front of the rows of benches is a beautifully lit mini-grocery store with an equally beautiful female store attendant reading a stripped copy of Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, while wearing an enchanting smile.

EXT. IKOYI - SERIES OF ESTABLISHING SHOTS

EXT. NIGERIA POLICE STATION - SAME TIME - ESTABLISHING

Establishing shot of the Nigeria Police station at Awolowo Road, Ikoyi-Lagos -- a grey one-storey building, with the usual Police blue, yellow, and green stripes painted across its length, within a reasonably spacious compound. The compound walls are painted SAME colors. Police Officers in uniform are littered all over the interlocked compound - in bulletproof, dressed in camouflage, mostly with weapons in one arm, walking slowly in groups, chitchatting with one another, or standing put, dialoguing with civilians.

Screen Caption: THE NIGERIA POLICE STATION, IKOYI-LAGOS

A blue Police METRO PATROL van is PARKED in front of the station and along the TARRED road, with its engine STILL running. Two officers are in the van - one on the driver’s seat, and the other seated on one of the two long benches in the back of the van, dressed in a mobile Police uniform, with an AK-47 rifle in his possession. They seem to be patiently waiting, maliciously, for someone to arrive, or for something to happen.

Just behind the patrol van is a private blue truck with impounded motorcycles jam-packed in its carriage. There was a signboard that strictly prohibited loitering, hawking and parking.

INT. INCIDENT ROOM, NIGERIA POLICE STATION - CONTINOUS

A mini-size room with a small desk at one corner, and rough piles of paperback files defacing the top. The chair behind the desk is empty. Behind the counter are two junior Officers NEATLY dressed in complete black Police uniform. A CORPORAL with two red ‘V’s attached to his sleeves, and a SERGEANT with three. The Corporal’s name-tag reads: “KUNLE ADEYEMO”, while that of the Sergeant reads: “TEGA OGBEGBO”.

TEGA, physically unimpressive, rugged, not handsome, not ugly —- just plain. Rebellious, rude, and out-spoken, in his mid-30s.

KUNLE, gentle-faced, late-20s.

Far behind the Officers is a ratty detention cell, with HALF-NAKED men standing barefoot, oozing foul odor, FUTILELY squeezing their faces through the narrow spaces between the vertical rusty bars that jails them.

PRISONER #1

(to the Officers)

Chair, how long I go dey here?

TEGA

(without turning to the Prisoner)

Until person come bail you out. Meanwhile I no wan hear fem for there.

(to Kunle)

Where Femi dey?

Kunle is scribbling on an A4 paper, lifting words from another document. He is LEFT-HANDED.

KUNLE

(still scribbling)

I don’t know.

Indistinct conversations between the prisoners are being heard.

TEGA

(hisses; re: Femi)

Oga give others better partner. My own na waka waka.

(to Kunle)

Abeg, you get credit for phone make I use am call Femo?

KUNLE

(curtly)

I don’t.

TEGA

You no go ever get, in Jesus’ Name.

(bows his head quickly)

Amen!

Tega’s cursing halts Kunle’s writing. Kunle pauses, slowly looks away from the paper, and glances at Tega disapprovingly.

KUNLE

(vexed)

You asked me a question and I answered. So why are you cursing me?

TEGA

(angrily)

If you talk for there again I go sand you. E be like say you no sabi your mate for here again.

Kunle reverts to his routine without any further utterance. Tega dips his hand into his trouser pocket and pulls out an OLD-FASHION phone. He fiddles with the stiff keypads for a bit before raising the phone to his ear.

BACK TO:

INT. RECEPTION HALL, ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL - CONTINUOUS

A phone call comes through, as the Officer’s phone is INDISTINCTLY heard ringing. CLOSE ON a white plastic name-tag pinned to his uniform, just above his left breast pocket, which reads: “FEMI KOLAWOLE”.

FEMI appears to be ABSENT-MINDED, staring at the STRAIGHT face of the Hospital RECEPTIONIST, with his face wrinkled by a FROWN, hoping that shortly it would be time to gain entry to interview one of the patients currently receiving treatment at the hospital. 

The Receptionist fails to make any VISUAL contact with Femi. She is comfortably seated behind a busy desk, chewing gum, and ROUTINELY stroking the keys of the keyboard, while PERPETUALLY staring into the bright Computer monitor in front of her.

FEMI

(to himself; re: Receptionist)

Who give this kin’ woman job for hospital? How person go dey chew gum for work? I sure say she no even go school finish. Person know person na wetin full this country.

INT. INCIDENT ROOM, NIGERIA POLICE STATION - SAME TIME

Tega is IMPATIENTLY listening to the dialing tune of his phone.

TEGA

(restless; re: Femi)

O boy, pick up.

BACK TO:

INT. RECEPTION HALL, ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL - CONTINUOUS

Femi’s attention is finally brought to his ringing phone as he feels a mild vibration within his right trouser pocket. He whines:

FEMI

Na who me and am dey share phone?

(sighs)

Who dey always reduce the volume of this my phone sef?

He dips his right hand into his trouser pocket and reveals his phone, which is still indistinctly playing his ring-tone.

FEMI (CONT’D)

(sighs louder; re: Tega)

This wahala boy again.

Close on the phone’s screen, which reads: “TEGA IS CALLING...”. Femi forcefully pushes down the GREEN answer button with his thumb, and steadily raises the phone up to his right ear.

FEMI (CONT’D)

(greets in Yoruba)

Bawo ni.

 

Screen Translation:

Hello.

His attention is now completely drawn away from the Receptionist, who takes a quick glance at him.

TEGA (O.S.)

(telephone voice)

Some people come station today dey fin’ you. E be like say them landlord wan pursue them commot house.

FEMI

(aggressively)

No mind those yeye peopl. Them no dey ever talk true for them miserable life. Their landlord don give them six months, say make them fin’ money pay their house rent or make them pack them load commot him house. Them just dey fin’ free house for Lagos so.

Femi appears COMPLETELY soaked in the phone conversation.

TEGA (O.S.)

(telephone voice)

If na so, make them pack them things commot. Shu!

FEMI

(over-confidently)

No wahala. When I reach station, I go carry you and Kunle go pack them things throway. Their village never full.

INT. INCIDENT ROOM, NIGERIA POLICE STATION - CONTINUOUS

Tega lifts his left hand up, close to his face, and glances quickly at the face of his brown leather wristwatch TIGHTLY fastened around his wrist. Close on the face of his wristwatch. The time is 12:03pm.

TEGA

Where you dey so? Twelve don knack already.

FEMI (O.S.)

(telephone voice)

I dey for that hospital.

TEGA

Yes! yes!! yes!!! I don remember. You don see the woman wey get accident?

BACK TO:

INT. RECEPTION HALL, ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL - CONTINUOUS

Femi’s attention is brought back to the Receptionist before him. His eyes are LOCKED on her every move, as she stared hard into the blinding monitor before her.

FEMI

(hisses)

Them say she dey fine, but she never wake. I just dey wait make she wake, make she tell me how everything take happen.

Femi pauses for a while, listening to Tega via the phone, before bidding farewell:

FEMI (CONT’D)

Later.

INT. INCIDENT ROOM, NIGERIA POLICE STATION - CONTINUOUS

Tega is now buried in the shadow of someone off-camera -- standing before him, across the counter.

TEGA

Later.

Tega lowers his phone, stares ahead at the phone’s screen, and disconnect the call with his thumb. He looks on to Kunle, rolls his eyes at him, and sighs.

TEGA (CONT’D)

(to Kunle)

God pass you. I don use my bonus airtime call finish.

Kunle is still writing. He doesn’t make any visual contact with Tega.

BACK TO:

INT. RECEPTION HALL, ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL - SAME TIME

Femi lowers his phone, and stares at its screen until the call is disconnected. He sighs HEAVILY as he drops his head down in exhaustion, staring at the nicely-finished floor of the hall, with his phone still in the FIRM grip of his right hand.

INT. INCIDENT ROOM, NIGERIA POLICE STATION - CONTINUOUS

Tega looks on to someone off-camera.

TEGA

(smiles)

What can I do for you, sir?

COMPLAINANT (O.S.)

(in a voice laced with panic)

I was just robbed, and the robbers carted away with my car and my money.

Tega’s smile instantaneously fades away.

TEGA

(in a serious tone)

How much, and what’s your car model, sir?

Now we see who Tega is talking to: A HUGE good-looking man, mid-50s, dressed in an EXPENSIVE-LOOKING white Yoruba attire.

COMPLAINANT

Two point five million naira, and a two thousand and fifteen Range Rover.

TEGA

(exclaims in Urhobo)

Oghene!

 

Screen Translation:

God!

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. RECEPTION HALL, ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL - MOMENTS LATER

Femi’s phone beeps twice with a WARNING of ‘low battery’.

Screen Caption: FEBRUARY 15, 2016 12:43 PM

FEMI

(sighs)

Na wa oh! See phone wey I charge full for night, na wetin dey show battery low. All these new new phones dem.

FEMI (CONT’D)

(with a frown)

Expensive rubbish!

He puts his phone away into his right trouser pocket.

RECEPTIONIST (O.S.)

You can now go in, sir. Wing C, Room number Seven. The seventh door on your left. Patient is now awake. No interrogation, please.

FEMI

(grumbles)

Na who this one think say she dey follow talk sef? If I light am one, them go say Femi don start.

Femi lifts himself GRACEFULLY, stands on both feet, carefully adjusts his uniform to perfection, without eyeing the Receptionist, GALLANTLY makes his way to the hallway.

INT. HALLWAY, ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL - CONTINUOUS

Femi DANCES as he walks through the long and somewhat EMPTY hallway with his eyes locked on the labels of every room door, and his face crafted in DELIGHT. Close on his WELL-POLISHED black Valentino leather shoes, as they move in rhythmical African dance patterns.

FEMI

(sings in the same tune as Wizkid’s ‘Jaiye Jaiye’ song)

Femi, bad policeman. I dey catch corny man. Ahh you already know. I crack every case...

He lifts his now tightly FISTED hands up, close to his face, throwing them back and forth like a professional boxer guarding his face in a boxing ring from the punches of an opponent, waiting patiently for the perfect opportunity to swing a winning punch.

FEMI (CONT’D)

(celebrates)

Ah! Femi you too much...

(continues singing in the same tune as earlier)

You for become musician...

Femi is happily in OBLIVION that he fails to notice two young female nurses walking behind him, in indistinct laughter.

INT. ROOM 7, WING C, ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL - SAME TIME

PAN ACROSS a white, sanitized, medium-size room with two quality flower paintings hanging on the wall behind the bed head. A white two layer cabinet with a basket of red roses is planted on one side of the bed. A desk telephone is rooted next to the flower basket. On the other side of the bed is a black luxury leather armchair.

CHIOMA, a young OVERLY-BEAUTIFUL lady, late-20s, with worn-off make-up, and a long UNCOMBED hair, sobs in CONFUSION. She is kept warm by a thick white and blue blanket, as a needle runs partly into a vein on her right hand, injecting fluid inside her body. She is still receiving intensive medical treatment after been involved in a FATAL motor accident last night.

Close on small healing scars engraved on her face, Chioma’s eyes circle around the corners of the room, trying to FORCEFULLY embrace her new environment. We have a glimpse of the vision of her wandering eyes.

Chioma tries to speak out, but the words steaming on her tongue fails to break free through her gritted teeth.

CHIOMA

(groans in pain)

Ah!

A teardrop rolls FREELY, down her left cheek.

DISSOLVE TO:

EXT. LEKKI-EPE EXPRESSWAY - NIGHT - FLASHBACK

Chioma is HEATEDLY arguing with a man. The man is behind the steering wheel, while Chioma is seated on the front passenger’s seat. The car is intentionally stirred off the expressway, and RAMMED into a wall by the driver.

END OF FLASHBACK SEQUENCE

CUT BACK TO:

INT. ROOM 7, WING C, ST. NICHOLAS HOSPITAL - CONTINUOUS