By Trevor Pacelli
I wanted to share with you a story idea I wrote in one of my classes at Arizona State as I continue to learn about screenwriting and film studies. Enjoy!
In the late 19th century, an old town in Elko County, Nevada is suffering from lack of grain, game, and gold. Many of the inhabitants of the town have already moved on and attempted to travel to other towns, but have reached little to no luck. But then a young boy named Samuel, who’s far from old enough to work a knife, decides to go and find a place that has food to help his dying grandfather. His parents are reluctant to let him go off on his own where he could wind up eaten instead of eating. But the sheriff of the town sees value in this young boy’s dedication, and lets him go. Samuel travels out for a long time, living off the very little bread and water he was given. After several weeks, he finds a large field of wheat, right next to a ravine of fresh water. He’s finally found a place that could save his family, but he’s forgotten one thing: getting back.
Scared and alone, Samuel tries very hard for several hours to remember which way he came. But as he tries to remember, he gets ambushed by a herd of hungry wolves. He feels that he is ultimately doomed, until someone calls out a wolf’s howl, drawing the herd away. Turned out the person calling out the howl was Samuel’s friend at home, Abigail, who followed Samuel out into the wilderness because she didn’t want him to be alone. Neither one of them knew how to get back home, so they decided to wait and see if any grown-ups came around who knew the area. Weeks pass, the two have been living off the grain and water, but no adults came around. Months pass, years pass, still no sign of human life.
Now, the two have grown more fond of each other as time pass, talking about their likes and dislikes, their fears, their concerns about their families at home, and above all if they think they’ll ever get back home. As even more time passes and they grow from young children to pre-teens, they continue running from wolves and other wild animals. But then, Abigail complains that they aren’t getting enough protein, and that it’s time they learn how to hunt. So Samuel uses the old knife he picked up in the start, faces up to a pack of wolves, and kills one, which then gets roasted and eaten. The habit continues, and Samuel then teaches Abigail how to hunt the same way: wolves, reptiles, fish, birds, and even bears.
More time passes, and they grow from awkward pre-teens to adolescents. They decide to take some action against the harsh and freezing winters they’re faced to survive, so they spend a great deal of their time building a house, completely out of the wood from several surrounding trees, they construct a hut that can keep them a bit warmer in the wintertime. Winter then comes around, and this time a blizzard strikes. But Samuel and Abigail were prepared, and stored up food and water and kept it inside the hut. The snow kept them inside the hut for several weeks, but they didn’t mind it at all, since they already had all the food and warmth they needed. Then, while cuddled together for warmth, in the comforting atmosphere, Samuel and Abigail kiss- marking the turn of their relationship from friendship to romance.
More years pass, and the couple has now established a fine system out of their environment: a suitable house, a storage system for food, a reservoir for clean water, a stove to cook game, a shelter from the sun, and on top of all that: Abigail’s pregnant.
It has officially been fifteen years at this point since Samuel and Abigail left home, and by now they’ve completely forgotten that they were supposed to be searching for someone to help them get back home. So they reach a complete halt in their routine when they meet the first human they’ve contacted in years: the county sheriff of the town they once lived in. The sheriff realized that the man he sees is in fact Samuel, and he questions why he never came back home. Samuel and Abigail also learn that their families have been dead for twelve years and lost their lives to the famine in the town. But not
everyone in the town has died, there are still a couple out traveling through the wilderness, under the same circumstances the growing children had. So for the very first time, Samuel and Abigail leave their home and the sheriff takes them to see the couple: a husband and wife with their twin daughters. Samuel suggests to them that they stay with them in the hut, as winter is coming again.
Just as the routine has always gone, Abigail and Samuel store up food and water in their hut for the weeks they’ll spend possibly stranded in the house, but this time for the family as well. Then all of them spend their time in the snow-enclosed hut, and the time arrives where Abigail’s ready to give birth. The labor process initiates and hours later, they give birth to a boy, whom Samuel names Dale. The family and the sheriff then help Abigail and Samuel continue enhancing the area they’ve constructed, in hopes to make it a suitable living arrangement. Then the sheriff is reminded of the telegram he received from a friend to find a home for at least ten other people in need for a home. So he then makes a trail to and from the nearest town so he won’t lose his way, and eventually an entire community of people arrives to establish the new small town that is right next to an endless supply of abundant grain, water, and gold: Dale Town.
Inspiration for Life with Autism
This blog has a variety of articles about people living life with autism, and topics and ideas that can help in the journey. Guest bloggers are welcome. Inspired by Trevor, a young adult film critic, photographer and college graduate on the autism spectrum.