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  • Peter Kam Fai Cheung SBS

Stained Lenses


FADE IN.

INT. PUBLIC BATH - NIGHT

PETER is rubbing in circular motion the lenses of his pair of eyeglasses.

PETER (V.O.)

The stains on the

lenses are largely

gone. It was in

early May 2019,

when I was in Beijing...

FLASHBACK

INT. SHANGRILA HOTEL, BEIJING - DAY

Business lounge. Peter chats with GENTLEMAN#1 (50s) and GENTLEMAN#2 (40s).

PETER (V.O.)

(Disturbed)

How come my vision

has become blurred?

I left Hong Kong early

in the morning, arrived

in Beijing in the afternoon

and have been having

some serious exchanges.

Am I having some

acute bodily failure?

GENTLEMAN#1

It's been a long day...

GENTLEMAN#2

Perhaps, you might

like to take a rest

in your room before

dinning with us.

Nodding readily, Peter leaves the gentlemen.

INT. HOTEL ROOM - DAY

Taking off his eyeglasses, Peter relaxes on a sofa. He massages his eye socket bones down to the bridge of his nose, and then his temples.

A beat. When Peter is about to put on his eyeglasses again, he notices something.

PETER (V.O.)

Oh, the lenses are

stained all around!

That's why my vision

is blurred.

Peter uses a piece of issue to rub the stains on the lenses.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

Oh, they don't go away!

Remembering.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

Did I use a wet acidic

tissue to clean the lenses

earlier? And so it has

damaged the coating

of the plastic lenses?

INT. SITTING ROOM - NIGHT

Eyeglasses in hand, Peter chats with his WIFE.

PETER

The lenses have become

unclear. Is there anything

you can do about them?

Having checked the lenses, Peter's wife uses some liquid cleaners and a piece of cloth to rub the lenses in circular motion. No difference.

WIFE

If the coating of the lenses

has been corroded, that's

nothing you can do.

PETER

I'll go to the eyewear

specialist tomorrow.

INT. EYEWEAR SPECIALIST - DAY

Shaking his head sideways, a SPECIALIST (30s) hands back to Peter his eyeglasses. Peter checks the lenses.

SPECIALIST

You have worn this pair

for nearly two years now.

PETER (V.O.)

I'll have a new pair then.

SPECIALIST

You want the best-quality

lenses right?

Peter nods.

PETER (V.O.) But I thought my lenses

were of the best-quality...

PETER

Yes, I'll take the most

expensive one...

PETER (V.O.) It's value for money.

I wear my eyeglasses all

the time, apart from

sleeping and swimming.

Having done all the eye-checking routines, Peter pays.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

It's a gift to myself as a

senior citizen too.

INT. STUDY - DAY

Behind his computer, Peter wears a new pair of eyeglasses and then the stained pair.

PETER (V.O.)

It takes time for me to

adapt to the new pair.

If I need the new pair,

I can use it. Meanwhile,

I'll continue to wear

the old pair, as I go

swimming twice a day

in summer.

INT. PUBLIC BATH - DAY

Wearing back his clothes, Peter wipes away the condensation on the lenses of his eyeglasses.

PETER (V.O.)

It seems that a stain

or two are gone or

have changed positions.

END FLASHBACK

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

They're actually breaking

down little by little, and

very slowly - over half a

year now.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

I'm glad that I didn't

give up my eyeglasses.

The story also explains

why I am a hoarder!

Peter smiles, wearing his old glasses with mostly stainless lenses.

FADE OUT.

The End

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