30 Day Challenge: Day 6 – Motives (Extract)

These are the opening scenes from the pilot of a TV show drama series called Motives. The series follows four women, all of whom seem to lead fairly normal lives. So why are they being held at gunpoint? We are taken back five months and the four women’s imperfectly perfect suburban lives will begin to unravel and we will find out just who is holding that gun and why.


A luxurious, secluded two story log-cabin surrounded by dense forest. Silence, except for the roaring of the camp fire.

We see FELICITY FRIEDAN (37, dark blonde, 7 months pregnant), JULIA DAVIS (43, brunette, glamorous, slight black eye), ADELAIDA GREER (27, stunning, Spanish) and LILY MILLETT (35, blonde, prim and proper) sitting around the camp fire.

Each woman shows a different emotional reaction: Felicity wills herself into showing no reaction at all. Julia has a stern, protective look in her eyes. Adelaida shakes with fear, not daring to look up. Lily sobs uncontrollably, absolutely terrified.

Then, we see the gloved hand of the ASSAILANT holding a gun to the women, finger on the trigger. The rest of the assailant is never shown.

The assailant’s finger slowly squeezes the trigger in the direction of the women. Just when you think the gun will fire, we cut to:


Felicity (not looking pregnant, a little chubby, tired, unkempt, paint splattered on her clothes and face) loudly slams the door of her house.

The Friedan House is medium sized, with a front garden overrun with children’s toys.

‘Five months earlier’ appears across the screen.

Felicity begins walking down her path, nearly tripping over a child’s scooter. She is absolutely fuming. She walks on to Mulberry Way.


Mulberry Way is a small suburban street with ten houses of varying sizes, all of which are traditional and picturesque – it almost looks too perfect to be true.

The street is vibrant and compact. All the houses have beautiful gardens and the street is well maintained. The distant sound of cars can be heard, but this is mostly covered by the sound of wildlife and children playing.

NEIGHBOURS are dotted around the street, playing with their children on their front lawns, washing their cars, watering plants, etc.

Felicity walks down the street. She smiles half-heartedly at neighbours when they raise their hand to greet her, but doesn’t stop to talk.


DOUG FRIEDAN (37, dressed in a smart suit with a bold red tie), opens the door of their house, holding MATTHEW FRIEDAN and GEORGE FRIEDAN (twins, 1).

DOUG: Felicity! Can you just stop being such a drama queen for once?!

ZACHARY FRIEDAN and DANIEL FRIEDAN (also twins, 4) appear at the door. They tug at Doug’s shirt to get his attention.

ZACHARY: Daddy, come play with us!

DANIEL: We wanna play monsters!

DOUG: Just wait a minute, boys…

Zachary and Daniel growl at Doug. Matthew and George start crying. Doug looks overwhelmed, panicked almost, while he attempts to comfort Matthew and George.

DOUG (CONT’D): (yelling) Felicity!


Felicity keeps walking, ignoring Doug. She’s a little embarrassed that Doug is making such a scene in clear view of the neighbours. The neighbours nearby try to act as though they aren’t listening, but it’s clear they are.

DOUG (CONT’D): (in background) Come on, I’ve got work to do!

Felicity continues walking. In the background we see Zachary and Daniel clinging to Doug’s legs, sitting on his feet. Doug gives up and waddles inside with Zachary and Daniel still sitting on his feet. Doug slams the door and we cut to:


Adelaida (slight Spanish accent, looking effortlessly beautiful, in casual clothes) slams the door of her house and begins walking down the path. She almost trips over THE GARDENER (male, 50s), who tends to weeds on the path.

The Greer House is easily the largest house on the street and is impeccably maintained.

EDWARD GREER (48, silver-fox) rushes out after Adelaida.

EDWARD: Adelaida, please, can we just talk about this?

Edward nearly walks into the gardener too. The gardener looks awkward. He listens in on their conversation while pretending to work.

ADELAIDA: (coldly) I have to meet the girls.

EDWARD: I’m really sorry-

ADELAIDA: (irritated) I know!

Adelaida calms herself.

ADELAIDA: I know… Look, we’ll figure this out later, okay?

Edward nods.

ADELAIDA (CONT’D): Good. Now, I love you so I’m gonna go before I put your head through a wall…

She walks along the path towards Mulberry Way.

Edward sighs, looking sorry for himself.

GARDENER: Women, eh?

Edward half smiles at the gardener, then goes inside the house.


Adelaida joins Felicity and together they walk down Mulberry Way. They approach the Davis house.

FELICITY: You look how I feel…

ADELAIDA: You wanna murder your husband too?

FELICITY: Constantly.

A loud crash, like glass smashing and yelling can be heard from the Davis House. Felicity and Adelaida both stop, looking concerned. The neighbours nearby look alarmed.


The Davis House is large and expensive looking with two fairly new cars parked in the driveway. Glass lamps line the path.

Julia (dressed in designer office wear, handbag on arm, looking absolutely furious) storms out of the house followed by her husband, JACK DAVIS (44, charming, American, wearing a suit). He grabs her arm.

JULIA: Get off me!

Julia shakes off Jack and walks down the path.

JACK: Look, I made a mistake-

Julia turns back to Jack, fuming.

JULIA: A mistake? Forgetting to get milk is a mistake. Mixing colours with whites in the washing machine is a mistake. Inserting your penis in your secretary is not a fucking mistake!

JACK: Oh, I forgot to get milk-

Julia picks up one of the glass lamps and hurls it at Jack. He ducks and it smashes against the front door.


Felicity, Adelaida and all the neighbours look on in astonishment.


JACK (CONT’D): Okay, yeah, not helpful… Let me explain-

Julia walks down the path.


Jack follows Julia, grabbing her arm turning her towards him.

JACK: Julia, just listen-

JULIA: If you wanna keep that arm, I suggest you get it off me.

Jack lets go. Julia walks on.

JACK: Jules, I’m sorry-

JULIA: Go fuck yourself!

Julia walks on to Mulberry Way. Jack gives up and goes inside.


Julia (completely composed) walks over to Felicity and Adelaida, who look shocked. Julia looks around the street and notices that everyone is watching her.

JULIA (CONT’D): (loudly, to the neighbours) Did you enjoy the show? Come back for our evening performance – it will include extreme torture followed by a live execution!

The neighbours go about their business.

JULIA (CONT’D): (to Felicity and Adelaida) Hey.

FELICITY: He cheated on you?

JULIA: (indifferent) Yep. A lot. A lot a lot a lot.

Julia begins walking to the Millett-Jones house. Felicity and Adelaida exchange concerned looks.

ADELAIDA: We’re sorry…

JULIA: (nonchalant) Eh, whatever… Who cares? I don’t care. Fuck him. Fuuuuuck him.

Felicity and Adelaida follow Julia, having to rush to keep up.


The Millett-Jones House is one of the smallest houses on Mulberry Way. It is very homely and 1950s-esque.

Felicity, Julia and Adelaida walk up the path to the house. Felicity knocks on the door.

ADELAIDA: Lily better have wine…

Julia pulls a wine bottle out of her bag and hands it to Adelaida.

JULIA: Did you inhale too much hairspray this morning? Little Miss Green Tea never has wine…

Lily (Irish, looking like a domestic goddess) answers the door with a smile. She notices the mood of her friends and her smile drops.

LILY: Oh wow, three happy campers…Come on in… I’ll grab the gun, shall I?

They all walk into Lily’s, closing the door behind them.



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