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Boards & Nails

Boards & Nails:

Gracey Roberts, Aiden McCoy, Hayley Craig

A family of four is in the driveway of an average suburban

house, shoving suitcases and bags into the back of the car.

There is a son, daughter, mother and father. They are having a

casual conversation.

After managing to get everyone into the car after the chaos of

packing. They begin their drive down various roads. Eventually,

they pull up on a large, old house.

The mother reluctantly enters the house while the rest unpack.

The grandpa, her father, is sitting on a rocking chair in the

living room. He turns to her slowly and greets her. The mother

does not look particularly excited to see her father.

The rest of the family comes in with their luggage and they hear

the sound of the moving truck arriving. They have a brief

conversation with the grandpa, mostly exchanging greetings.

The next day, we see the son in his newly moved room getting a

backpack and leaving the house, saying goodbye to his dad in


Cutting to inside a school building, we see him standing alone

in the hall as everyone is walking and talking with each other.

He is visibly uncomfortable. Making his way to class, he thinks

about his old friends from his old school, who meant a lot to


On the way, he sees a poster for basketball tryouts. He signs

up, but is clearly very nervous about it. He thinks, once again,

about his friends and how they all played basketball together.

Later, the son is back at the house and is wandering around the

halls. He walks past his sister in her room, then his mom and

dad’s room. He notices a cracked door into what he guesses is

his grandpa’s room. He doesn’t know his grandpa well, and

curiously checks out the room.

He looks around without touching anything, until he opens the

closet. His clothes are all typical old man clothes (boring). He

notices a box in the corner of the closet on the floor. He

ponders opening it for a bit, then reluctantly does only to see

a picture inside along with some other seemingly unrelated


The picture was of what he assumed to be his grandpa in some

sort of old army uniform. The son couldn’t tell where he was in

the photo, but it seems vaguely industrial. The son is off put

by this photo, but puts it back and moves on.

The family gathers in the dining room that night for dinner. The

family is chattering, but the grandpa is eerily quiet. The

family continues talking. The dad asks the son about his day at

school. He says it was fine and quickly changes the subject. THe

mom comes in with the food when the grandpa suddenly slams his

hands on the table.

THe family goes quiet. The mom asks him what the issue is. The

grandpa starts irrationally yelling about everyone being

connected to him and how he wants them to get out of his head.

The family is shaken and scared. Everything is silent besides

his incessant rambling.

The mother quickly rushes him out of the room, being the one

most used to his outbursts. Still, she was unnerved by what he

said. She took him to bed and told him to lay down. He

apologizes as she leaves the room.

The next day, the air has shifted between the family and they

all feel tense. As the son is about to go out the door for

school, he hears his mom, panicked, yelling about how she can’t

find grandpa.

The house falls into a frenzy as everyone goes searching for

him, including the son. The dad says he can take him in late.

After about 45 minutes of searching, they found no traces of

him. The mom calls the police, telling them she thinks he had a

schizophrenic episode and might have wandered off. While on the

phone, she swears she can hear a sort of knocking sound from

within the walls. She chooses to ignore it.

She continues to hear a knocking sound, and even a low whisper

within the walls every so often for the rest of the day. She

goes to her husband and tells him about it, and she proposes

that grandpa might be INSIDE the walls. The dad dismisses it

immediately. He is sure she is just hearing things.

The next day, the house is quiet and tense. The mother is

quickly growing more agitated with the noises in the walls. She

decides she can’t rely on her family to do it, since they

wouldn’t believe her, so she decides to look for an entrance

into the walls.

She begins searching close to the walls, looking for any sort of

latch or secret entrance. She looks in the basement, and

everywhere else, until she reaches the attic. She starts moving

around boxes and discovers a latch hidden in a peculiarly placed

spot in the wall.

As she crawls inside, she hears the noise again, and begins

yelling for grandpa. After no response, she tries to coax him

out more calmly. She is nervous and shocked, but continues

venturing further into the hollowed walls. She wonders why they

are hollowed out like this? She hears the noises again, but

louder this time. Then again. Then once more. Each time it is

louder. She doesn’t seem to be fully aware of the way the world

is beginning to distort around her. It continues and becomes so

loud that the mom begins to scream. Yet, despite all the noise,

she could not see grandpa. Before cutting away, the grandpa

appears behind the mom, smiling.

That night, the family cannot find the mom either. Like with

grandpa, they search the house high and low for her. The boxes

that were moved to reveal the entrance were mysteriously put

back by someone.

After no luck, it begins to set in for them that something is

seriously wrong. It seems she is missing as well. The father

tells his kids what their mom said, and he is beginning to

believe it has something to do with her disappearance. He

believes she might’ve been right about grandpa’s location and

believes she must be there, too. They are all scared to think of

why she hasn’t come back yet. The daughter is in tears and asks

dad if she is coming back. The dad seems shocked by this

question, but says yes with certainty.

Scene transitions to mom inside the walls, flashlight in hand.

She calls softly for her father to come out. the walls behind

her begin to warp but she doesn’t notice. Whispers slowly grow

around her. She starts walking faster in the walls. Calling her

father louder, and more frantic. At the end of her path, she

sees her grandfather hunched over socking. She runs towards him

but when he turns around he looks different. Younger. He’s

holding a baby that could only be her. She stands there, mouth

agape until he puts a thumb on her forehead, the corners of her

vision go white. She nods, tears in her eyes, then there's a

snap, everything fades to black. Camera jump cuts to a startling

image of the mother slumped against the corner of the walls.

Glass in her flashlight broke, oil looking substance bubbling

out of her mouth and eyes.


Back inside the house,they feel a sort of dread coming too close

to the walls now that they are aware of what's happening. As if

you can feel the dark energy seeping out.

The walls are all brick when they tear the paper off. It appears

there’s no way in. Son is snooping around bookshelves, looking

for a weak spot when he hears the echo of hollowness through the

shelf when it’s hit. He moves a small hatch on the side and the

door pops open. They’ve found their way in.

Walking into the room the son is horrified by the scene around

him. Jars incubated of two headed animals and fetuses stored in

alcohol. He almost doesn’t see the swastica hung above the desk.

He goes to open the drawers but they’re locked. Using a bronze

sculpture of Apollo he finds next to an identical one of

Artemis, he breaks the lock on the drawer. The gods head falls


He reads detailed papers of experiments. Most of the letters are

in German but he sees the black and white pictures attached.

It’s here he realizes which side of the war his grandfather was

on. Next, he finds an old leather journal. It’s to document his

grandpa's findings. He talks about his detailed experiments on

several sets of twins. As he reads more the excerpts become more

frustrated. The Americans are closing in and his research isn’t


That is until he reaches the last page on the journal. It’s

titled “BREAKTHROUGH” and nothing else. The journal abruptly

ends. The son breaks out of his state of shock and runs into the

living room where he last saw his father. His father is there,

but something is wrong. His baby sister is missing.

Desperate to find a way to save his daughter, the dad hat he’s a

plan attempting to enter the walls by going under the house and

through the crawl space. He tells his son to go upstairs and get

the flashlights, as the son makes his way upstairs he sees his

mother walking past the doorway and runs to see her.

Scene cuts to the father waiting for his son outside the

entrance of the crawlspace. He intends to wait for his son to

get back but from within the crawlspace he hears the coughing,

and strained breathing of his daughter. Immediately he rushes to

his knees calling her name and crawling through the dark towards

the noise. He reaches instead a pile of mangled flesh and

clothes. Tufts of curly blonde hair peek through the carnage.

He approaches the wreckage and picks up the only lock of hair

untainted with blood. Clutching it gently in his fist his

breathing begins to quicken. The walls around the crawl space

grow until the room is the size of a cathedral. The father is

now standing in the Ilse of a church. Something is illuminated

at the altar but he doesn’t check to see what it is. In the pews

around him are different versions of his family. Some were burnt

to unrecognizable bodies. Others rotted from the inside out.

They’re all looking at him. Grandpa is playing the cello in the

corner. As the father begins to walk towards the exit, the cello

plays faster, more vigorous and high pitched. He breaks out in a

sprint, running towards the chapel doors at full speed. The

scene then shifts to the real world outside of the

hallucination, where the father has fallen to his death,

tripping straight into the empty well where he smashes his head

on the sides.

Back inside the house the son makes his way through the doorway where his mother holds a picture of him holding his sister as a baby. She hums a melodic song, looking at the picture fondly of not longingly. Her son asks her if she is okay but she just keeps humming. He puts his hand on her shoulder, giving her a gentle shake but she doesn’t turn to face him. “We’re gonna be a family... but not like other families. We're gonna be a real family. One. One eternal beating're gonna love it. I can’t feel you yet like I feel them.....why won’t you hear us? What kind of mother would I be if I didn’t teach my son to listen?”

She turns around smiling. He notices black around the front

pieces of her hair. He pushes the hair behind her ears, and sees

thick black fluid, like oil, running down from her ears down

onto her neck. Before he has a chance to react, she grabs his

face in her hands.

“Come with me. My only son. It’s not safe out here.”

She walks to a dark corner where the wall is nothing but shadows

and beckons for him to follow her but with tears in his eyes he

shakes his head. Her screams become wicked as she tells him to

follow, but he refuses, slowly backing up to the door, then