In His Will

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Mayfair (Comedy & Humour, Screenplay Award 2023)
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Logline or Premise
When young aspiring ballet dancer, Ciara, falls pregnant as the result of an assault she is stuck between her own wishes and that over her family's. Ciaras overbearing mother, open grandmother and her sisters longing for children in the face of infertility are factors that weigh on Ciaras decision.
First 10 Pages

Ciara finishes a shift at her bar job and is expecting her mother, Mary, to pick her up. Mary however, has been preoccupied by her eldest daughter, Saoirse, who has turned up announced devastated at another failed round of IVF leaving Ciara to walk home late at night. As she is walking she thinks someone is following her but returns home in a panic where she sees her mother and sister who express their excitement at seeing Ciara perform in the ballet in a couple months. Some time passes where Ciara doesn't seem quite herself especially when the family are putting up Christmas decorations. During which, Mary sees a card to "Aoife, Patrick and baby Mary" from a "Sister Margaret" and questions her mother who remains vague about it. After turning up late to practise Ciara is reminded how sought after her role is before having a flashback to the assault she was victim to walking home that night. She stumbles and reminded that the dance is two weeks away, having heard this time frame it dawns on Ciara she could be pregnant. A pregnancy test reveals she is pregnant and she begins searching her options and stops on abortion before her mother comes in asking her how she has been, hiding the pregnancy test Ciara makes an excuse and hopes all is well. However, that night at dinner she berates God when Mary tells Saoirse that she prays God will give her a child upsetting the whole family. The following morning Ciara apologises to her sister and suggests she moves in with her while Saoirses husband is away so she isn't so alone. The sisters bond over a film and Ciara tries to bring herself to tell Saoirse that she is pregnant and doesn't want it but is interrupted by their mother. While still staying at her sisters Ciara passes out and takes a trip to hospital. Once she is released Saoirse and her mother are there, Mary had prepared a change of clothes with the positive pregnancy test laying on top. When the three return home to granny Mary announces the news to the group oblivious to Saoirses upset before suggesting Ciaras gay best friend, Gabriel, of being the "baby daddy". Ciara tries to open up to Gabriel that she doesn't want the baby before her mother barges into her room saying that she has spoken to her ballet instructor and decided that its best for Ciara to take a step back from the dance obviously sparking outrage in Ciara. Having calmed down Ciara speaks to her grandmother who opens up and admits that she had Mary out of wedlock and was sent to a nunnery during her pregnancy and until Mary was two suggesting that times had changed and that it didn't matter if Ciara wasn't married, this honesty break Ciara who admits she doesn't want the baby taking granny by surprise. Ciara tries to find release from the whole situation by going to the ballet studio alone but is bombarded by messages from her mother so returns home hearing muffled arguing. When she enters the kitchen she realises that granny has told Mary that Ciara wants an abortion and is outraged by this, revealing this information to distraught Saoirse too. The desperate sister pleads that Ciara lets her adopt the baby to which she objects causing Mary to call Ciara selfish. Ciara breaks blaming her mum, and God, for not being there that night much to Marys confusion. When pressed even further as to why she won't let Saoirse adopt the baby she admits that she was raped, shocked that she said it she runs out. She finds herself sat in church on her own having an openhearted conversation to God, Mary however enters halfway through and hears this and takes her daughters hand giving it a squeeze and smiling at her.

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