Heiress to the Useless Words Mafia (peaceofaith) wrote in sayitsomehow,
Heiress to the Useless Words Mafia

For My Convienence Only

Scene 1

As the curtain rises, a dark apartment is revealed. It is not yet morning. The apartment is completely furnished, but not decadent, nor eccentric. All of a sudden an alarm clock goes off. By the third ring the hand of KELLI emerges from under a pillow and reaches for the alarm clock. While grabbing for the alarm clock, it falls to the floor and turns off. The figure of KELLI arises drowsily from the bed and steps into the slippers at the end of the bed. KELLI begins a groggy, stumbling, slow, and yet determined and familiar walk to the window, reaching out to grab and put on a robe (located on the chair near her desk). KELLI reaches the window, draws its curtain and looks out unto the city. A nearby clock chimes, revealing the hour as KELLI speaks.

{Clock chimes}
KELLI: Morning comes
{Clock chimes}
KELLI: and New York City
{Clock chimes}
KELLI: Once again becomes
{Clock chimes}
KELLI: alive with throngs of people.
{Clock chimes} {Clock chimes} {During the chimes, KELLI climbs into the window seat, facing the window}
KELLI: Sure it never sleeps
{Clock chimes}
KELLI: but it does doze a bit. {Small laugh} Sometimes the streets are so empty that you think you’re the only one alive-and then a car almost runs you over.
{KELLI steps out of the seat and turns on the light switch}
KELLI: When morning comes, so does freedom. {Starts walking towards her bed} Freedom from sleep- hours upon hours trapped inside a random playlist of thoughts. {Starts making the bed} But it also brings imprisonment. A world full of limitations and choices and failure. You can escape a dream-but not life. {KELLI sits on the bed} Unless you choose death-or have death choose you-it doesn’t really matter which, you meet the same ending. {Draws the pillow to her lap} The ending is so inevitable. I used to not be afraid of death. It was something far away, hidden behind some large unmovable object. But then, nothing really is unmovable. {Curls into a ball} And now death is everywhere-just waiting to strike me down. And sooner or later it will. {KELLI starts to cry, but quickly stops} Look at me! I’ve got one day left in my home and I’m wasting it contemplating what I can’t change. I mean really, I have so much to do. I have to call people and fix things and pack and-say goodbye.
{The mood immediately changes}
KELLI: Sometimes I really think that I can’t move. That I’m paralyzed with fear. I’m not as strong as I hoped I was. I thought that I could beat this, I really did. God, how naive I was…but how could I have known?
{KELLI looses it and begins sobbing into her hands, and then burying her head in her pillow}
JOANNA: {We only hear her voice, and she is singing}: Calm now darling, dry those tears. Mother’s here now, there’s nothing to-
KELLI: Fear. {Stands up and looks around} Great, I’m loosing it too. My body’s shutting down, so why not my mind too?
JOANNA: {Still, only her voice} Kelli dear, {The sound of a key being thrust into KELLI’s door becomes obvious} tell me what’s wrong. {JOANNA opens the door and steps into the apartment}
KELLI: Please let this be a dream.
{JOANNA approaches KELLI who is frozen in her spot}
KELLI: How-you don’t even have a-
{JOANNA places the key in KELLI’s hand and touches KELLI’s face gently, KELLI flinches and steps backward}
KELLI: Look-you’re not really here and I can imagine you out.
JOANNA: You didn’t image me darling; I came because I heard you crying.
KELLI: You did not hear me crying.
JOANNA: Yes I did-
KELLI: That’s bullshit!
JOANNA: You will not speak to your mother that way.
KELLI: You are NOT my mother! My mother is dead. She died 15 years ago.
JOANNA: Then what am I?
KELLI: You are a hallucination
{KELLI begins s journey to the kitchen to get a bowl of cereal}
KELLI: The doctor warned me about having them. He said that as I got sicker I might have them. He also told me not to worry because I probably wouldn’t have them. He was wrong.
JOANNA: What are you doing now?
KELLI: I’m going about my life as if you weren’t here. It’s morning, I just woke up, and I’m hungry so I’m going to eat my breakfast.
JOANNA: You really should drink something honey.
KELLI: I keep a bottle of water on my desk.
JOANNA: That’s good honey, water’s quite healthy. {KELLI doesn’t respond} Come to think of it, I wouldn’t mind some water myself. {No reaction} Kelli, it’s rude to ignore people, I taught you better. {KELLI crunches her cereal} Fine, I didn’t come to talk to you about water anyway. Like I said, I came to comfort you honey. You seem to be taking this pretty hard.
{KELLI rises and carries the empty bowl to the sink trying hard to contain her anger while JOANNA continues to speak}
JOANNA: I know that death is scary baby, it’s not really something that people plan, but you’ve got to try and be brave.
{KELLI turns and explodes}
KELLI: I have been nothing but brave!
JOANNA: Then how come you’ve been doing this alone?
{A true moment occurs between them. After a beat Kelli goes over to her bed and pulls a suitcase from under it-she packs.}
JOANNA: I’m sorry, but you can’t do this by yourself.
KELLI: I know. I was just waiting for the right time. I’m telling everyone today.
{JOANNA helps KELLI pack}
JOANNA: When do you check in?
KELLI: Tomorrow. Maybe tonight.
JOANNA: And maybe never.
KELLI: What?
JOANNA: I’m sure I don’t need to spell it out for you. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
KELLI: I don’t know what you’re talking about.
{As JOANNA is about to speak KELLI screams}
{Another genuine moment. KELLI grabs her purse}
KELLI: I have to go now-please go away.
{KELLI goes to the door}
{KELLI slams the door shut}
JOANNA: I’m so sorry.

Scene 2

The lights rise on the street outside of Kelli’s apartment. The day is now full. It’s a clear day in fall. Throughout the scene people will walk through the street. These people are MATTHEW, RAUL, GAVIN, SARAH, and JOANNA, however they are not recognizable. KELLI walks out of the door, looks around suspiciously, and when the coast ic clear, she beings to climb down the stairs. He flips out her cellphone and dials. A special rises on RAUL, asleep in his bed because it is morning and he has yet to wake up. The phone rings and RAUL slowly wakes up. On the third ring, he finally answers.

KELLI: Hey Dad.
{RAUL makes an extremely guttural an incoherent noise}
KELLI: I’m sorry, did I wake you up?
{RAUL makes a grunt}
KELLI: I know you like to sleep in-
RAUL: I must have told you 100 times not to call me before ten.
KELLI: Well-I thought you woke up earlier on weekdays.
RAUL: Apologize right now or I’ll hang up the phone.
KELLI: Fine-I’m sorry.
{A complete mood shift}
RAUL: Now then, how are you darling?
KELLI: Not so well. I had an…uh…um
{There is a pause while KELLI tries to find the right words}
KELLI: Have you ever thought that you’ve…um…seen Mom?
RAUL: What? Like a ghost or something?
KELLI: Yeah.
RAUL: Well, in the early days I did. It seemed that everywhere I turned, I saw her. Not even her, but a bit of her sometimes. In the light, the sky, the milk, in the mirror staring at me with her eyes, pleading me to let her comfort me. {Raul changes his position…stands, lies down, something different} She was big on comforting others-she treated us like royalty, you know that babe?
KELLI: {Softly} Yeah, I remember.
RAUL: You remember what I told you.
KELLI: I remember my mother dad! Not as well as you do, but I remember her.
RAUL: Suppose I would have hidden all of her photos away under the bed and had never spoken a word about her again. Suppose I erased all traces of her from our lives-would you remember her then?
RAUL: There was never any time for your mother to relax, she didn’t allow it. She always said that relaxation was a sin. {In a voice supposed to be similar to JOANNA’S} Relaxation is the vehicle for sloths. From there, if you make a right you land in self-indulgence which leads to gluttony. {RAUL laughs gently} Your mother wasn’t a very religious woman-but sin struck a cord with her. Ask her about God and Angels, Heaven or Hell, and she’d brush you off saying she didn’t know about such things. But sin, no, sin was different.
{RAUL does not hear KELLI and continues on}
RAUL: Everything was always about others. {In a very sad tone} If only she had made some allowances.
RAUL: Oh, I know honey. I can’t change the past, so why dwell on it? But I do blame my digression on you.
KELLI: Yes, far be it for me to open up a can of worms this early in the morning {A small pause} This morning after I woke up, I heard her. I was upset and so she sang me a lullaby to try and sooth me, or at least she tried. I got freaked out because- because it’s not normal. Hearing your dead mother sing to you 15 after her death- it’s not right. And then she unlocked my door and came in.
RAUL: Why do you think she came inside?
KELLI: Because I wouldn’t listen to her otherwise. I don’t have time to deal with ghosts now, there’s too much going on.
RAUL: Like what? I had no idea that you’ve been busy lately. Anything- exciting?
RAUL: Um…work stuff?
KELLI: {In a very small voice} No, not work stuff.
RAUL: Then what honey?
KELLI: I- I’m- I…Forward motion. Time. The laws of time insist that you keep moving forward, that…nothing can go back to its original state. And for most of this game, life holds wonder for us. But everywhere there’s danger ready to pounce. When it strikes there is no turning back, ever. {KELLI begins to cry} Everywhere I look- I see danger. I can never escape it.
{KELLI attempts to regain control over her motions, but fails}
KELLI: Daddy, I’m so scared. I’m dying.
RAUL: Honey, you’re just stressed-
KELLI: Not a metaphorical death. I’ve got cancer daddy. I’m nt going to-
{KELLI chokes on her words and cannot finish them}
RAUL: How long-
{RAUL cannot finish his question either}
KELLI: I’ve known for 3 months now. I didn’t want to worry you.
RAUL: Treatment. There must be an alternative.
KELLI: To death? No there’s not!
RAUL: Chemo-
KELLI: NO CHEMO! On my own my body is killing itself and-
RAUL: Chemo could help you!
KELLI: But I could still die.
{KELLI’s phone starts beeping. This is a sign that KELLI’s phone is running low on battery}
KELLI: {Said with the up most passion and emotion} Look dad- my battery is almost gone, I’ll make it quick. Tomorrow I’m checking in to the Adalia Anne Hospital. Room 215. Level 3. I can give you directions-
RAUL: No, I’ll figure it out.
KELLI: I’m sorry for not telling you sooner dad, really.
{KELLI’s phone turns off}
KELLI: Shit.
RAUL: Me too.
{The special fades slowly off RAUL. KELLI puts her cellphone into her pocket and takes her suitcase to hand. She looks around searching for…something. Anything that could help her. A MAN walks down the street and KELLI approaches him}
KELLI: I’m sorry to bother you sir, but my cellphone died.
MAN: Yeah, so?
KELLI: I was wondering if you could help me out.
MAN: What, like give you my cellphone?
KELLI: Well, that would be nice-
MAN: Get a grip, chick! I have better things then to help some random girl who’s probably a hooker or a junkie.
KELLI: Fuck you!
MAN: Right back at you.
{THE MAN walks starts to walk offstage left, but sees a payphone and quickly, but stubbornly returns back to where KELLI is currently standing. She is not looking at him}
KELLI: What the hell do you want now?
MAN: I may not be a nice man, but I’m not a jerk. There’s a payphone right over there. Thought you’d like to knew.
{THE MAN starts to walk offstage}
KELLI: Thank you!
{THE MAN turns around suddenly, but does not move closer to KELLI}
THE MAN: So do I get a kiss now for helping the damsel?
KELLI: Forget what I said.
THE MAN: That’s what I was counting on.
{With that THE MAN walks off, for good this time. KELLI walks to the phone booth-mumbling and grumbling. As she reaches the booth a special goes up on GAVIN, dressed in a casual suit and tie. KELLI picks up the phone and dials. GAVIN picks up on the 2nd ring}
KELLI: It’s me.
GAVIN: What’s up?
KELLI: A lot actually. I-I’m getting ready for a really busy time in my life and I-I’d like to see ou while I still can.
GAVIN: What’s this mystery thing you got going on- I don’t know anything about it.
KELLI: I don’t tell you everything.
GAVIN: Well, you wanna fill me in?
KELLI: Not over the phone- over dinner. Tonight.
GAVIN: Kell, I can’t.
KELLI: This is really important Gavin.
GAVIN: If it’s so important, why did you keep it from me?
KELLI: LOOK, I just really need to see you-
GAVIN: And I really need to go. Look Kell, you caught me on my way out. Huge buisness day today.
KELLI: You’re blowing me off for lawyer shit?
GAVIN: A. I’m not blowing you off because we had no plans to begin with. B. It’s not “lawyer shit”. It’s serious buisness.
KELLI: Oh, I’m sorry-you’re blowing me off for serious lawyer shit!
KELLI: You’re spending 8 hours in an office and then going home to think about what you did those 8 hours. That’s blowing me off.
GAVIN: First of all, I work a nine hour day. Second, tonight I have a celebration dinner with my client because we just won our case.
KELLI: Bull shit-that doesn’t go on trial for a week.
GAVIN: Ah-but the other guy just backed out. He’s coming down to the office to sign the papers today.
GAVIN: I’m not blowing you off.
KELLI: I know.
GAVIN: I love you.
{KELLI does not respond}
GAVIN: Kell, did you hear what I said? I-LOVE-you.
KELLI: I’m going to the hospital tomorrow.
GAVIN: So that’s the big surprise? Going to visit a sick friend.
KELLI: I’ll be spending a lot of time there.
GAVIN: I think that wasn’t your big surprise, hon. I think that you were planning on a more romantic surprise.
KELLI: No, Gav-
GAVIN: Kell, I think you wanted to go out with me tonight on a romantic date.
KELLI: I did.
GAVIN: Will you please let me say this? I think that you wanted to be the first one to say ‘I love you’. That’s why you didn’t say that you loved me back, or even acknowledge it. I’m sorry that I beat you to it, but I think you’re being unreasonable.
{KELLI does not respond}
GAVIN: Please, Kell.
{KELLI does not respond}
GAVIN: I know that you love me. You have to.
KELLI: {unconvincingly} I love you.
GAVIN: Good. Now, I have to go. We’ll have our date some other time, alright? Later babe.
{GAVIN hangs up the phone. As KELLI realizes this she looks at the receiver with disbelief}
KELLI: dying.
{KELLI leans against the phone booth and beings to sob. Angrily she begins kicking the side of the phone booth and wails loudly. She then falls to the ground and rolls herself into a ball}

Scene 3

{As soon as the blackout on KELLI is complete the lights rise on RAUL and SARAH eating a casual dinner and talking feverishly.}
SARAH: No dad, what I’m trying to say is that I don’t believe that democracy even exists anymore.
RAUL: Of course it exists, it’s what’s holding this country together.
SARAH: No, what’s holding together this country is the illusion of democracy.
{RAUL begins to open his mouth in protest, but SARAH drives her point in hard and fast, stopping him before he gets the chance}
SARAH: The way I see it-the president rules our country, or at least he does in theory. Really it’s more like a group of people pumping ideas into the presidents head which he then attempts to pass off as his own. And those very people that inform the president are the ones who have the power to approve or reject his so called ideas. Therefore, democracy is just a memory-because all politics are fixed and therefore…democracy just is no longer necessary.
RAUL: {half-heartedly} You would have thought that by now I would have figured that it’s pointless to argue with you.
SARAH: What? You can’t be serious? You usually win our debates. RAUL: You really should be a lawyer.
SARAH: Dad, I’m not going to be a lawyer, you know this. What’s wron-
RAUL: Why not? From as far as I can figure you’d be successful as hell.
SARAH: I could never be a lawyer. All they think about is money.
RAUL: And what’s so wrong with that? You could use that extra dough.
{SARAH lets out a half amused and half annoyed laugh}
SARAH: It would be undermining everything that I stand for dad. I fight for truth and justice.
RAUL: So do lawyers.
SARAH: No, not every time. They fight for whoever’s going to give them the most money. If that person considers with their feelings of truth and justice, that’s just an added perk-but not a necessity.
RAUL: But once you get yourself established as an influential and successful lawyer you can pick and choose your cases-
SARAH: Dad-just drop it. I don’t want to be a lawyer. Accept it. Are you sure nothing’s wrong?
{RAUL reaches over to SARAH and touches her hand}
RAUL: Nothing’s wrong honey…I just had a rough morning.
{SARAH pats RAUL’S hand and drawls away}
SARAH: What happened?
RAUL: You work in a bookstore making God knows what, how can you be happy?
SARAH: Very easily. Money doesn’t get to me the same way that it gets to you.
RAUL: Obviousl-
SARAH: Can we just drop it?
RAUL: Fine.
{RAUL raises his hand to signal for the check to be brought over. A WAITER immediately comes over and RAUL hands him a credit card. THE WAITER leaves. There is a small moment of uncomfortable silence between RAUL and SARAH}
SARAH: Why don’t you want to talk about this morning?
RAUL: So, you have a boyfriend?
SARAH: Change the subject.
RUAL: Alright. Your sister-
{SARAH immediately interrupts RAUL}
SARAH: Yes, I have a boyfriend. His name is Matthew, he’s 28, and he’s in health care.
RAUL: Now, why can’t you be more like your boyfriend? Doctors make good money.
SARAH: He’s not a doctor.
RAUL: A surgeon then?
SARAH: No, a surgeon is a doctor.
RAUL: He’s not a nurse is he?
{SARAH becomes uncomfortable and downs the rest of her drink}
SARAH: Yes, Matthew is a nurse.
{RAUL begins to laugh, although he tries to stifle it.}
SARAH: It’s not funny! Nurses are very valuable. They provide both medial and emotional assistance when their patients need it the most and…{SARAH is at a loss for words}other stuff.
RAUL: So, did he try to become a doctor-but failed?
SARAH: No, he never wanted to be a doctor.
RAUL: Is he…masculine?
SARAH: So, you mentioned my sister?
{RAUL wants to keep talking about SARAH’s boyfriend, but with a sigh changes the topic of the conversation}
RAUL: She called me this morning. I have some bad news.
{THE WAITER comes back with the check and RAUL’s credit card. RAUL thanks him and THE WAITER leaves, while RAUL and SARAH do not}
RAUL: She has cancer.
SARAH: What kind?
RAUL: {taken aback} You find out your sister has cancer and that’s the first thing you ask?
SARAH: {smugly} You don’t know, do you?
RAUL: {firmly} She’s known about this for a few months now, but she has yet to take any medication.
SARAH: That doesn’t surprise me, Kelli never was the brightest bulb.
RAUL: I know you and your sister don’t get along, but I would have expected you to show a bit of compassion and sympathy.
SARAH: Dad, my sister that I don’t talk to, don’t see and don’t like is dying. She didn’t care enough about me or the situation to tell me, so obviously I’m not supposed to be excessively upset or concerned about it. Look-when she dies, I will go to her funeral and play my part, but I’m not going to make up some bullshit story about how I’m devastated over the whole thing. I haven’t missed her for years, and I’m not about to start now.
{RAUL gets up}
RAUL: {coldly} Tomorrow Kelli’s checking in to the Adalia Anne Hospital.
SARAH: {aside} Shit. Let me gues, level 3.
RAUL: How did you know that?
SARAH: Because Matthew works at the Adalia Anne Hospital and I figure it would just be my luck if she was on his floor.
RAUL: So, what does she have?
SARAH: Brain. Most likely. I could be wrong.
RAUL: You’ll visit her.
SARAH: Yeah.
RAUL: {teasingly} And maybe even smile?
{SARAH rises}
SARAH: Are you sure you wouldn’t rather hear me go on about democracy?
{RAUL begins to walk towards the door}
RAUL: If it means you’ll smile, you can ramble on about the fall of democracy.
{there is a pause in dialog as RAUL keeps walking and SARAH remains frozen. RAUl reaches the door and turns back to SARAH. SARAH walks to RAUL}
SARAH: Democracy isn’t falling.
{They walk out the door}
SARAH: It’s actually fallen. The government-

Scene 4

{Music beings playing. The music is the sort of music you would expect to hear in a hospital waiting room. The scene almost instantly goes to the Adalia Anne hospital where we find KELLI sitting down in a chair filling out paperwork. KELLI mumbles to herself while nurses walk in and out of the room}
A NURSE: Ms. O’Hara
{KELLI looks up}
A NURSE: Somebody will be with you shortly.
KELLI: Thank yo-
{KELLI stops because THE NURSE has now walked out of the room, not waiting to hear the rest of KELLI’s thanks}
KELLI: Wherever you went. {KELLI ruffles through her paperwork} paperwork-one of the more unfortunate tagalongs to illness. The world claims they’re making everything idiot proof-but in trying, they only succeed in making things more confusing.
{KELLI begins to read through her forms and unknown to her, MATTHEW enters. He is unmistakably the man that KELLI ran into on the street. MATHEW looks as if he is beginning to speak, but recognizes KELLi and stops himself. KELLI slams down the papers on her lap}
KELLI: It’s like a hospital’s final plee-don’t come here. Let us rest. Watch as we make you run away with our absurdly annoying and fucked up paperwork.
MATTHEW: That’s standard paperwork.
KELLI: {not looking up} What?
MATTHEW: {on this line, moves forward while staying a good distance away from KELLI} I mean, we didn’t devise it to cause annoyance and frustration to our patients.
{KELLI looks up and lets out a gasp of recognition}
MATTHEW: It’s main goal is to save our asses from being sued, which is always a plus in my book.
{By now MATTHEW is close enough to shake KELLI’s hand, he instead opps for sitting down in a chair close to her}
MATTHEW: When we met this morning I’m afraid I didn’t give you my name, it’s Matthew. I’m the head nurse on the neurology division. Is there anything that I can do to help you?
KELLI: Yeah. Knock of the Florence Nightingale act. You weren’t very helpful this morning and I have no intention of hoping you’ll be helpful now.
MATTHEW: I’m just doing my job Mrs. O’Hara.
KELLI: {Firmly} Ms.
MATTHEW: {coyly} What?
KELLI: Ms. O’Hara, not Mrs.
MATTHEW: {Flirtatiously} Ah, my mistake. I was just wondering if something was…wrong. According to our records, you’re here one day early.
KELLI: {anxiously} That’s not a problem is it?
MATTHEW: {patiently} Well, we’re not quite…ready for you yet. Isn’t there anybody you could stay with-just for the night?
KELLI: No. No one.
MATTHEW: No friend or…{struggling} partner you could stay with?
KELLI: {warmly} Did you start being so PC, or is it part of the job training? {laughs} All of my friends are purely social. Bring up any subject heavier then ‘which shoe to wear in order to make my waist look smaller’ and they quickly become useless and flighty.
MATTHEW: And your-
KELLI: Boyfriend. I was going to stay with him tonight, but it didn’t work out.
MATTHEW: What, did you find him throwing himself on-
KELLI: {harshly} That is none of your business. But for your information he had a party to attend. He won a big case. Lawyer.
MATTHEW: Really, because I had no idea that was coming. I thought that maybe he was in the mafia.
KELLI: {Flirtatiously} Now there’s the familiar you that I’ve come to love.
{MATTHEW stands up and begins a slow and gradual pace}
MATTHEW: And you have no family?
KELLI: No, I have family, it’s just that…well, my sister hates me, my father’s still in shock over the whole cancer thing, and my mother’s dead.
MATTHEW: {Sincerely} I’m sorry.
KELLI: About what? The sister? Dad? Mom? Whole thing?
{KELLI glares at MATTHEW expectantly. MATTHEW gives her an earnest look back}
MATTHEW: All of it.
{KELLI softens}
KELLI: Don’t be. I just told my father today, so he’s got a right. My mother has been dead since I was 7…and since I’ve been 7, I’ve hated my sister. She’s…ambitious and unbroken. She cuts people down with words and then leaves before any harm can get to her.
MATTHEW: What’s your sister’s name?
KELLI: Sarah.
{MATTHEW skips a beat}
MATTHEW: Is she married?
KELLI: Not unless she hasn’t told anyone. But she’s not exactly the marriage type.
{MATTHEW sits down again, this time in a chair directly next to KELLI}
MATTHEW: What do you mean?
KELLI: Well, she’s never dated one guy for more then four months. Commitment isn’t exactly her forte. Why all this interest in my sister?
MATTHEW: I think I’m dating her.
{KELLI turns her chair to face MATTHEW}
KELLI: {full of energy and bubbly ease} So you’re straight.
MATTHEW: Hadn’t we established that this morning?
KELLI: {very flirtatious} You know, I could tell my sister that you hit on me this morning. I bet she wouldn’t like that.
MATTHEW: And what do you care about hurting your sister?
{A moment of realization. KELLI becomes defensive and stands up}
KELLI: I don’t.
{She turns and faces MATTHEW who is staring at her}
KELLI: I don’t give a shit about Sarah.
{MATTHEW rises and goes over to KELLI}
MATTHEW: Look-the hospital really isn’t ready for you yet. We’re still getting everything ready and I’m afraid we don’t have room for you.
KELLI: {worried} Where will I-
{MATTHEW touches KELLI’s shoulder}
MATTHEW: Shhh. You can stay at my place.
KELLI: {taken aback} What?
MATTHEW: Just that. Once I’m done my shift I’ll take you home. We’ll eat dinner, maybe watch a movie, and then sleep…in separate beds. Then in the morning I’ll make you breakfast and then we’ll get you to your room.
{Turns to face MATTHEW-they are now dangerously close to each other}
KELLI: Why are you being so nice to me?
MATTHEW: Because you’re sick. And you’re my girlfriend’s sister.
{KELLI begins to move away. MATTHEW gently brings her back to him}
MATTHEW: But mostly because you’re sick.
KELLI: Are you going to tell my sister?
{MATTHEW moves away and sighs}
MATTHEW: No, I’m not. I don’t think telling her would be the best idea.
{KELLI walks up to MATTHEW}
KELLI: She’ll find out eventually.
MATTHEW: I know. But it’s not like we’re going to do anything wrong.
KELLI: So why not tell her?
MATTHEW: Get your stuff and meet me at the entrance to the hospital.
KELLI: Thank you.
{MATTHEW starts to leave}
MATTHEW: It’s nothing, really.
{KELLI pulls MATTHEW back to her and embraces him in a hug}
KELLI: No, it’s so much.
{MATTHEW abruptly pulls away and walks to the door. KELLI turns her back to him and gathers her stuff. MATTHEW hurries out the door without a glance directed to KELLI}

Scene 5

Without skipping a beat the set turns so the audience never loses focus off of MATTHEW. MATTHEW closes the door and leans against it.
MATTHEW: Shit. I am so screwed. {MATTHEW propels himself off the door and keeps walking. Unknown to him SARAH has entered the stage and is walking right behind him} She thinks I’m wonderful.
SARAH: Guilty as charged.
{MATTHEW turns around}
MATTHEW: Sarah? What are you doing here?
SARAH: Oh, I have a little warning for you: my sister is dying and she’s going to be gracing this hospital with her presence. She’s got brain cancer, so she’ll be in your care. She’s a total bitch, but humor me and be nice to her, okay?
{MATTHEW begins walking}
MATTHEW: I’m sure she’s not that bad.
SARAH: You don’t know her. Trust me.
MATTHEW: Fine-no problem, I’ll be nice to her.
SARAH: Good-and don’t worry, I’ll be around 24/7.
{MATTHEW stops walking}
MATTHEW: Is that really necessary Sarah? I’m a grown man and an experienced nurse. I’ve dealt with people far worse then Kelli could ever be, trust me.
SARAH: {dejected] Silly me, I thought you’d want me along.
MATTHEW: {realizing his mistake} No-of course I want you along, but I feel that you’re doing this all on my account. I know that you don’t like your sister, so why would you want to be around her all the time?
SARAH: My father is making me come visit her. I probably wouldn’t have agreed if it wasn’t for you. I figure, I can make it look like I’m being a good sister while really spending most of my time with you.
MATTHEW: You can’t spend most of your time with me Sarah.
SARAH: {growing angry} Why not? You got somebody else? A patient?
MATTHEW: {turns to walk in the direction SARAH came from}
MATTHEW: No. You can’t spend most of your time with me Sarah because while I’m at this hospital I work. You won’t be allowed to come with me while I work, it would be dangerous and uncomfortable for you. I do shit that you wouldn’t care for.
SARAH: {running to catch up with him} Like what?
MATTHEW: {doesn’t wait up for her} Don’t be so naive, you know exactly what I’m talking about. {grows angry and turns around to face her} It’s not like you’ve never been to a hospital or at least never watched a doctor show.
SARAH: I’m just trying to be thoughtful.
MATTHEW: Well, stop it.
SARAH: What has gotten into you?
MATTHEW: I’m really busy right now Sarah, that’s it.
{moves closer to her}
SARAH: You swear?
{They kiss}
MATTHEW: Yeah, I swear.
{They kiss again}
MATTHEW: I gotta go, okay? I’ll call you later.
SARAH: Okay.
{SARAH walks back the way she entered the hospital, but it is obvious that something is troubling her. MATTHEW disappears into a room. KELLI timidly reveals herself from behind the door to the waiting room}
KELLI: {in disbelief} He likes me. {shakes it off} No, no he doesn’t. He blew her off like that because he’ll have to work. That’s gotta be it. {KELLI begins to walk toward the exit, but suddenly stops} But what if he did like me? I hate Sarah, but I can’t-but it won’t come to that. It won’t. My brain is just playing tricks on me {KELLI continues to walk offstage} I’m making all this nonsense up. Yeah. {KELLI exists the stage}

The scene shifts to GAVIN’s apartment. He is pacing up and down on the phone looking worried. The special on him is dim. We should be able to hear him like he’s faraway and barely be able to make out his shape.

GAVIN: Fuck. God, where is she? Yeah, hi Kelli-it’s me, Gavin again. I’m getting kind of worried because you’re not picking up your phone. I said that I’d call you later…and I got some time before the party starts so I thought I’d check up on you. You seemed sort of stressed last time we talked, and I realize I didn’t even ask why. I assumed that I knew, but you know me right? I have bad instincts. I’m worried about you Kell, I really am. And I feel so shitty about-look, just do me a favor and call me the instant you get this…even if it’s during the party or at 5am or anything. Okay-I love you, bye.

The special on GAVIN goes out and simultaneously the lights rise on RAUL’S bedroom. These lights are normal, we should be able to see him clearly.

RAUL: Are you almost done in there? I really need to talk to you.
JOANNA: {offstage} Yes dear, I’m almost done. I just have to blow dry my hair.
RAUL: Can’t you do that later?
{A sigh is heard from JOANNA}
JOANNA: I’ll be out in a moment dear.
RAUL: I don’t think I’ve ever felt more worried about something in my life.
{JOANNA opens the door and sits on the bed, right next ro RAUL}
RAUL: My daughter’s dying.
JOANNA: I know.
RAUL: It’s easy for you to be calm, she’s coming to you.
JOANNA: Don’t talk like that-
{RAUL turns to face her}
RAUL: But it’s true.
JOANNA: Death isn’t so bad.
{RAUL stands up}
RAUL: I don’t think you’re really qualified to make that assumption.
JOANNA: And why not? Didn’t I die?
{RAUL begins to walk}
RAUL: Yes, but you chose to.
{JOANNA shifts her position}
JOANNA: It still hurt. Do you think it was easy leaving you all behind?
{RAUL turns to face her}
RAUL: You didn’t have to do it.
{JOANNA gets up and leads him back to the bed}
JOANNA: We’ve been through this already. I was drowning and I couldn’t be saved. Admitting my need to relax and be comforted would have been undermining everything my life had stood for. It would have meant that I was living a lie. Everything would have changed.
{RAUL starts to get up}
RAUL: {bitter} Everything did change.
{JOANNA gently pulls him down until he stops resisting and gives in}
JOANNA: No matter what I did everything would change. This way was better, for me. And that’s what it was all about. Me. For once I was only thinking of myself, and not of others. I needed to do that, and you know it.
RAUL: {softly} I know.
JOANNA: {equally softly} This isn’t why you called me, is it?
RAUL: No. I’m worried about Kelli. Why didn’t she tell me that she was dying earlier?
JOANNA: {soothing} You know she was only doing what she thought was best. She didn’t want to worry you. For all she knew, a miracle could have occurred and she would have stopped being sick.
RAUL: How could that ever be if she refuses to take medicine? She’s going to die. Nothing I can do about it.
{RAUL begins to cry}
JOANNA: No, there’s nothing you can do about it. You can’t cure her Raul, just like you couldn’t cure me.
RAUL: What am I supposed to do then?
{RAUL begins choking on his tears}
{They embrace}
JOANNA: Everything is going to be alright.
RAUL: {loudly} No it won’t be. My daughter is going to die, that’s not alright.
JOANNA: She’ll be happy once she’s dead, she won’t have to suffer anymore.
RAUL: What is life without suffering? It’s nothing. Life is defined by suffering. You either deal with it, or you don’t. She’s suffering so much-just put her on medication.
JOANNA: You can’t be serious.
RAUL: {angry tears} I don’t know what I think anymore. I’m upset and…so worried. And there’s not a thing that I can do. Not a single thing.

SARAH appears with a dim special on her. She is talking on a payphone.

SARAH: Yeah-hi Kelli, this is Sarah. You’re not in right now and this is the only number that I know to call, so um…I’m sorry that we haven’t been talking or anything. I know that ever since mom died we haven’t seen eye to eye about anything, and I’m sorry for being such a pain in the ass. You’ve been a pain in my ass, but-look, I know you’re dying. I won’t lie, but I’m pretty upset that you never told me. I had to find out from dad. He’s pretty upset too by the way. He told me you’re not taking medication, and I have to tell you that I think you’re really stupid. I know that’s not what you need to hear right now, but I can’t help it. Medicine is important. Tons of people spend their lives working with medicine and improving it so that it can help people like you. I don’t give a shit about whether you live or not-I just wanted to let you know that I think you’re really stupid and…I’ll visit. {pause} Bye. {almost hangs up the phone} Don’t bother to call back, it’s not important.

The scene shifts to MATTHEW’S apartment. MATTHEW is cooking while KELLI is sitting on the couch}

KELLI: So, did you always want to be a nurse?
KELLI: I mean, it’s kind of unusual for a guy to be a nurse.
MATTHEW: Well, I don’t see why it should be. If women expect to be taken seriously as doctors, I don’t see why men can’t expect the same in nursing positions.
KELLI: But you’re straight.
MATTHEW: I don’t think what kind of job a person takes has anything to do with their sexual preferences.
KELLI: It’s just a little hard to get used to, that’s all.
{small awkward pause}
MATTHEW: And what do you do?
KELLI: I’m a teacher.
MATTHEW: And what do you teach?
KELLI: Philosophy.
MATTHEW: That’s funny, because I always picture philosophy teachers as being really old men.
{they both laugh}
KELLI: Well, most of them are to tell you the truth.
MATTHEW: Do they hit on you?
MATTHEW: I’m surprised to hear that.
KELLI: You are?
{KELLI walks over to the kitchen}
MATTHEW: Yeah I mean a beautiful, witty, and smart girl…you’d thin they’d be falling over themselves to make passes.
KELLI: Well they don’t.
MATTHEW: Alright then. What are you doing here? Go back down to the couch and sit down.
KELLI: But you’re all the way over here, it’s hard to maintain a good conversation.
{MATTHEW smiles}
MATTHEW: Well-you’re in luck. I’m almost done the hard part.
KELLI: Who knew making macaroni and cheese could be described as hard.
MATTHEW: I don’t use the kind that comes in boxes.
{KELLI picks up a box}
KELLI: Is that so?
MATTHEW: Yeah, well I add things. Extra cheese, spices, that kinda stuff. You see-I’m not as simple as you see.
KELLI: Yeah, I’ve noticed that.
MATTHEW: {as he puts the macaroni to cook} So, how long you been sick?
KELLI: Do we have to talk about this?
MATTHEW: I guess we don’t have to, no. What do you want to talk about?
MATTHEW: No, I’m boring.
KELLI: You don’t really think that. You know you’re fascinating.
MATTHEW: {as he sets the timer on the oven} Come on, let’s go pick out a movie to watch.
{MATTHEW walks toward the TV while KELLI remains frozen}
KELLI: I don’t feel like watching a movie.
{MATTHEW turns around and finds his way into a chair}
MATTHEW: Well, what do you feel like doing?
{A mischievous smile breaks out on KELLI’S face}
MATTHEW: Anything that requires a smile like that, I’m sure you can’t do…or at least I don’t have it.
{KELLI sits next to MATTHEW}
KELLI: What did you think I was going to suggest?
{MATTHEW tries to move away a bit}
MATTHEW: Um…well, something with drugs or booze.
KELLI: You don’t have beer?
MATTHEW: You shouldn’t be having beer.
{KELLI stands up}
KELLI: Who are you to tell me what to do?
MATTHEW: {firmly} A registered nurse.
{KELLI sits back down}
KELLI: Right. I keep forgetting that.
MATTHEW: How can you forget that?
KELLI: {moves closer to MATTHEW} Because I don’t want to see you as a nurse.
MATTHEW: Kelli, I don’t know what you want from me, but I can’t do that.
{KELLI is now sitting as close to MATTHEW as space would permit. KELLI places her hand on MATTHEW’s leg}
KELLI: I haven’t even said what I want to do yet, relax.
MATTHEW: I think I know-
KELLI: Do you have any board games?

The scene shifts back to RAUL and JOANNA. They are both lying on the bed with their arms around each other.

RAUL: She asked me about you.
JOANNA: And what did you say?
RAUL: That I used to see you all the time when you first died, but that as time went on I didn’t anymore.
{JOANNA sits up}
JOANNA: Why did you lie to her?
{RAUL stretches}
RAUL: She’s stressed out enough as it is, she doesn’t need to worry about my mental stability.
JOANNA: {strongly} You’re not crazy.
{RAUL sits up}
RAUL: {gently} No, of course I’m not. Seeing you is perfectly normal. And talking, and kissing, and-
JOANNA: Stop it.
{RAUL kisses her shoulders}
RAUL: I love you, I’ve never stopped.
JOANNA: This isn’t a question of love…you think you’re going crazy.
RAUL: No, no I don’t.
JOANNA: {coldly} Don’t lie to me Raul, I know you well enough to know when you are.
{a moment}
RAUL: I’ve thought about it, and I’ve done some talking to people. I came up with the same conclusion everywhere-it’s not normal. You’re too real.
{JOANNA stands up}
RAUL: No-I don’t want you to go anywhere.
JOANNA: I have to.
{RAUL stands up and hugs her around the shoulders}
RAUL: No you don’t. I decided long ago that I didn’t care if it wasn’t normal-
JOANNA: {coldly} But I do.
{JOANNA starts walking to the door. RAUL runs in front of the door}
RAUL: No, stay. It hasn’t even been an hour yet.
JOANNA: {gently} Move out of the way.
RAUL: {in gentle tears} No.
JOANNA: Raul it’s time for you to move on. It’s been 15 years. Now move.
{RAUL moves very slowly away from the door. JOANNA opens the door and goes through it, she does not close the door. RAUL slams the door, leans against it, sinks down and curls into a ball and cries}

The scene shifts once again to MATTHEW’S apartment. MATTHEW and KELLI are playing Monopoly and eating their dinner.

MATTHEW: Did I tell you that I hate this game?
KELLI: You’re only saying that because you owe me $500.
MATTHEW: And that’s not cause to hate the game?
{KELLI laughs}
KELLI: No, that’s not cause to hate the game.
MATTHEW: What would you do if I told you that I wasn’t going to pay.
KELLI: I would tell you that you were being a threat to the entire world of Monopoly and that you had to do it {an evil yet playful smile forms on KELLI’s face} or else.
MATTHEW: {playfully} Ooh, I’m scared now.
{they laugh}
KELLI: Give me my money.
MATTHEW: Nope, sorry. You’re going to have to make me.
{KELLI stands up and runs along the sofa to where MATTHEW is sitting, but he has already gotten up, running in the opposite direction. After a moment or two KELLI reaches MATTHEW and tackles him down to the floor. Although at first playful, the mood quickly changes}
KELLI: Will you give me back my money now?
MATTHEW: Alright, but just because-
KELLI: I’m sick and you feel sorry for me?
MATTHEW: {sincerely} No, because you’re beautiful and I’m attracted to you.

The scene shifts to GAVIN’S party. He is standing at a bar with a drink in his hand talking to nobody. He looks sullen and worried, not at all drunk. His mind is on KELLI, and not on the party. GAVIN walks toward a man who turns out to be his client.

GAVIN: Hey man, look-I really got to get home, it’s been fun though. Great party.
CLIENT: Thanks man. You saved my ass.
GAVIN: All in a days work.
CLIENT: Take care.
GAVIN: You too.
{GAVIN grabs his coat quickly and walks out the door drink still in hand. He does not look where he’s going and bumps into SARAH spilling his drink all over her}
GAVIN: Oh, God I’m so sorry.
SARAH: {absentmindedly} No, it’s no problem…the shirt will dry. {SARAH notices how attractive GAVIN is} And it’s black, so it won’t stain.
GAVIN: Glad to hear.
SARAH: So where’d you get that drink?
GAVIN: A party.
SARAH: It looked good.
GAVIN: I think it was pretty standard, nothing fancy about it. You could get it anywhere.
SARAH: Okay, so let’s go.
GAVIN: {confused} What?
SARAH: Let’s go to any bar and get me one of those.
GAVIN: I could just tell you what it was called.
SARAH: I have a bad memory.
GAVIN: Alright, then I’ll write down the name and give it to you.
SARAH: {coming closer to GAVIN} But I might lose it.
GAVIN: Look, you’re pretty, but I have a girlfriend.
{GAVIN begins to walk away}
SARAH: Well, I have a boyfriend…doesn’t mean I can’t have some fun.
{GAVIN turns to her}
GAVIN: Yeah-but when you love somebody, you tend not to want to cheat on them.
{GAVIN turns back and walks away}
SARAH: {yelling} How do you know she’s not out cheating on you?
GAVIN: {yelling back} I just know.
SARAH: {sadly and softly} Wish I knew.

The scene shifts back to MATTHEW’S apartment.

KELLI: What?
MATTHEW: Oh come on, like you don’t have feelings for me.
{KELLI sits up}
KELLI: Yeah, but you’re dating my sister.
MATTHEW: And you have a boyfriend. We’re no different.
{MATTHEW tries to pull KELLI back down to him, but she resists}
KELLI: When I called my boyfriend this morning, I tried to tell him that I was dying, but he wouldn’t listen. Instead he told me that he loved me.
{MATTHEW sits up}
MATTHEW: {softly} Oh. Sorry for-
KELLI: Only I couldn’t say it back. I did, but it wasn’t real. I don’t love him. Do you love my sister?
MATTHEW: {gently} No. She doesn’t love me either though. Look-
KELLI: And here you are, beautiful and caring…and you want me. He loves me, and you just want me.
MATTHEW: {matter of fact} You can’t help who you’re attracted to.
KELLI: Calm down.
{MATTHEW starts to move away and stand up}
MATTHEW: You lead me on for the entire night and then you tell me that you have a boyfriend who loves you…I’m not stupid, I get it. Or did you just not believe that I was straight? Was this all just a game for you to play?
KELLI: Please calm down. You keep interrupting me, I’m not done yet.
{MATTHEW sits down on the cough dejectedly}
MATTEW: I’m listening.
KELLI: I should be in love with my boyfriend, but I’m not. Instead I see-you.
{KELLI climbs to MATTHEW and stops right at the sofa}
KELLI: You can’t help who you’re attracted to, and I’m attracted to you. I don’t care about my boyfriend, and I don’t care about your girlfriend. I care about you and me.
MATTHEW: {softly, gently} So what do you want to do?
KELLI: I want you to kiss me.
{MATTHEW lowers himself to the floor and slowly pulls KELLI towards him. As they kiss a special comes up on both GAVIN, it is the same dim special}
GAVIN: It’s me again…calling to see how you are. But you’re not answering, again. Is everything alright? Do you need to me to come over? Right-you’re not home…look when you get this message could you call me back? I really want to talk to you…I met-I just need to talk to you.
{The special fades on GAVIN and rises on SARAH. Meanwhile, MATTHEW and KELLI are still kissing}
SARAH: Matthew-where the hell are you? {MATTHEW begins to take off KELLI’S shirt} It’s not like you to not pick up the phone when you’re obviously home. {KELLI takes off MATTHEW’S shirt} You said you’d call, and you didn’t…and I have something to tell you. {KELLI begins to unbutton MATTHEW’S pants} My sister is really pretty…she’s prettier then me. {MATTHEW and KELLI stand up and start making their way to the bedroom, still kissing} And I met a man tonight, and if he would have gone for it I would have slept with him tonight. I guess what I’m trying to say is…{MATTHEW turns off the light} it’s over. I’m sorry to have to tell you this way. {MATTHEW slams the door to the bedroom shut} Goodbye.

Lights fall. The curtain drops.

End of Act 1
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Have I mentioned yet that I absolutely LOVE the end of the last scene?
Lol-yes, yes you have. And I love you tres bits for it! This ending is much better then the origional one...mostly because Matty gets to be in his undies! score!
very nice. a tragic love story. loved the ending of the act!
Thank you! Glad you read it-it's long so I appreciate it.

I love you. So much. You're an incredible writer.
awww, you make me want to cry a little inside, but in a good way 'course.

And I love you too. So much. So much that I need to see you again and we are so planning a trip to NY to have mega amounts of fun! Oh-and did I mention that I want to see the writings of Lu? Because I do.