Friday, August 31, 2012

How The Flap Works (working title)

(DAVE and ED enter men's room from SR.)

E: …so then the Pope says, “Scepter?  Hell, I include her!”

D: Ha ha ha; good one!  Hey, I’ve gotta pee.  Give me a minute.

E: No problem, I do too.

(D & E continue talking as they cross to imaginary urinals on UCS back wall.  D simply unzips his pants while E pulls his pants all the way down to the floor.)

D: So for the trip to Minneapolis, I was thinking I would drive the van up and then you could…(notices E’s pants all the way down, looks away quickly)…Whoa!  Uhm, Ed, what are you doing?!

E: What does it look like I’m doing?  I’m going to take a piss.

D: Yeah, but is that really necessary?

E: Yeah; my bladder is full.

D: No, I mean pulling your pants down that far.  Why are you doing that?

E: Like I just said, I’m trying to take a piss.

D: E, you don’t need to have your pants down that low to pee.  (finishes at urinal, steps away)

E: Hey, I know how to take a piss.  I’ve been peeing by myself since I was about four, and no one else has ever had a problem with the way I do it.

D: Well, everyone else was probably too embarrassed by the sight of your ass hanging out.

E: What are you, the potty police?  Besides, if you don’t get your pants out of the way, you’re liable to get pee on them.  What else am I supposed to do?

D: You know that little flap on the front of your underwear?  You just pull your dick through that and then aim and fire.

E: Is that what that thing is for?

D: Uh, yeah!

E: (considering this concept) That does kind of make sense.

(Tim enters SL.)

T: Hey, Dave.  Hey, Ed…(sees E’s pants down, looks away)…Whoa!  What are you guys doing in here?

D: We were just peeing!  But Ed thinks he has to pull his pants all the way down to do it.

T: Dude, all you have to do is whip it out and go!  You don’t even need to pull your pants down!

D: Yeah, he didn’t even know about sticking it through the flap.

T: Is that what that thing is for?  I just pull my waistband down and go over the top.  But I still keep my pants up, Ed!

E: (pulling pants up) Hey, lay off, you guys!  I didn’t know!

T: How could you not know?  Did it never occur to you that you shouldn’t flash your ass at other people?  It’s common sense! 

E: Hey, you didn’t know about the flap thing either!

D: Hold on!  Okay, before this gets any weirder: I do not care how you guys get your dicks out to piss, but I do get a little uncomfortable when someone’s ass is hanging out in my face.  So, Ed, please rethink your peeing technique.  Or just use a stall.

E: Okay.  I’m sorry; I didn’t mean to bother anybody.

D: All right.  Let’s just move on. (starts to leave)

E: Hey, Dave, don’t you need to wash your hands?

D: No, I didn’t pee on my hands.

E: You still need to wash them!

T: You don’t wash your hands when you piss?  Disgusting!  That’s even worse than Ed’s bare ass! 

D: How?

T: He doesn’t touch everything with his bare ass!

D: Fine, I’ll wash my hands! Let’s all have a big hand-washing party!  And then we should walk out of here and never have this conversation again!

E: Okay!

(E and D cross to CS and mime washing their hands in two imaginary sinks.  T waits for them to leave, then looks around to make sure no one else is in the men’s room.  He crosses UCS to imaginary urinals, unzips, and examines things carefully.)

T: So that’s how the flap works! 

Copyright (C) 2012 by Eric Landuyt

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Second Helpings of Cyanide: Act 2

Sorry about taking up all this space... anyways, any feedback on this heavily-changed version is appreciated!


The stage is now the show’s backstage, fleshed out to show how cluttered with junk it truly is. CHUCK is the only one there sitting down… JULES stands, continuing to practice for his sonnet for CHUCK.

JULES: A land begot with confusion appears
To the blind man who rules this kingdom fair,
And woe is he! For if he had but ears
To know the truth, it’d strip his logic bare!
For in the conflict of good and evil,
Who knows the difference without their signs?
None of you can stop this here upheaval
For now you must watch as the stars align.
Pardon me if my rhyme does offend thee
As the pills to fix one’s blight must so do!
But remember, these shadows are like me,
Their existence is possible by you.

During these sentences, the following pantomime occurs. CHUCK enters, looking happy and unlike the self that the audience has seen so far. RONALD enters, approaching by CHUCK and putting his arm on him. As MARION enters, RONALD whispers something to CHUCK. CHUCK refuses at first, and RONALD crosses his arms and looks away, changing his friendly mood to one of hostility. CHUCK finally gives in and starts to pantomime an argument with MARION in his usual manner. RONALD sits back and laughs. MARION, finally fed up with him, leaves.  CHUCK, finally gaining the scope of what he’s done, looks dejected and regretful. RONALD goes up to him, happy and excited, and shakes his hand. CHUCK instantly goes back into an energetic, happy spirit. SLYVESTER enters, glaring at them. CHUCK and RONALD leave, as SLYVESTER begins to approach JULES.

JULES: So join me! Watch them pursue moonlight daises
And then we’ll laugh, knowing that they’re crazy!

SLYVESTER grabs JULES, who cries out in terror. He pins him up against the wall and ties him up with the rope from his pocket.

SLYVESTER: I heard within your feeble voice a bit
Of concern for your Bob… this will not do!
With this rope, you shall be here till the end
Of that brute masquerading as your lord.

JULES: Okay, can you just quit it? We’re just trying to put on a show and make it through school ok, maybe learn some new things for once, and then you barge in and throw a play in Cronos’s face and just take over! We were going to do Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead until you talked Cronos into this! So come on now… the whole ‘destroy Chuck’ thing is a cover. I know it… But what for exactly?

Silence. Then…

SLYVESTER: Well… it’s only fair, after all of this, that I finally come clean. I really am going to destroy Chuck.

JULES: See? I knew that, if you gave… wait, WHAT?

SLYVESTER: (laughs) I had you going, didn’t I? Nobody suspected a thing.

JULES: … that’s the stupidest plot twist I’ve ever heard.

SLYVESTER: What was that?

JULES: I mean, really? Would anyone in real life actually act like this? Are we in Saved by the Bell now?

SLYVESTER: Its as I feared. Theater has eaten his brain.

JULES: Look, you’re not that great of a character to begin with. But this… this is too much to buy. Let’s start from the beginning: you’re planning to kill Chuck…

SLYVESTER: But who would know? I’ve been acting so over-the-top all of this time that no one has suspected a thing of me. You all trained yourself to just ignore me, so no one noticed when, today, my sword is sharpened to the point of being lethal! …Wait, did you say killing? No no no, I have no need for that. I just want to cut him up a bit.

JULES: Yeah, I’ve heard this isn’t the best place to be dark. So what’s on that blade then?

SLYVESTER: You’ve read your Hamlet, Mr. Clifton.

JULES: Of all the books I actually read this year…

SLYVESTER: But yes, there is a certain type of poison on the blade. Not lethal, but enough to accomplish…

JULES: So why Chuck?

SLYVESTER: Look, can’t you let a villain monologue in peace? Now I’ve lost my train of thought… ah yes. I’ve put on this blade the exact concentration of poison needed to make him suddenly hurl all the lunches he’s ever had on the entire stage. A few Siberia-sized boils later, and he’ll lose any friends he’s ever gained.

JULES: So… you know him well enough to know how his blood reacts to a certain concentration of poison.

SLYVESTER: A mere study. Nothing important.

JULES begins whistling, “What is Love?”

SLYVESTER: Stop that! It’s not like that!

JULES: All right, Sly, why are you doing this?

SLYVESTER: What do you care? He hates you.

JULES: Maybe not. I think, underneath him…

SLYVESTER: ‘He’s a wonderful human being.’ I’ve heard it before, and I’m sick of it. You don’t like him because he has the potential for a wonderful human being! You like him because it’s funny to hear a seventeen-year-old say, ‘poopy.’

JULES: You hate him for that?

SLYVESTER: Oh, believe me, he’s far worse. He’s symbolic of all that is wrong with this world. Everyone loves him! Everyone!

JULES: Ronald? He hardly counts.

SLYVESTER: Oh, it’s the manipulative one especially. He cheers him on and applauds him everywhere he goes.

JULES: Ok, a bit controlling, but it’s not like Chuck’s made a habit of…

SLYVESTER: You really don’t get it, do you? He acts like this no matter what. You saw how even when he does something completely stupid, he gets attention, gets told it’s ok. When I embarrass myself, it’s hysterical. When he embarrasses himself, it’s heartwarming. Why can’t I be a lovable loser? Why? Damn him! If only I were a better loser!

JULES: Too late.

SLYVESTER draws out the sharp sword.

SLYVESTER: You might want to keep your mouth shut until the end of the play. Now, where was I? Oh, yes. Once he throws up all over me, I’ll soon overtake him as a point of pity. They’ll all pity me, and eventually love me, just like they do for Chuck Rolfe… Chuck Rolfe, how I hate him. Him and his ‘superiority.’ He has everything I lack… well, except for money, emotional stability, height, looks, and actual acting chops. BUT EVEN SO!

JULES: … you know, this is really too much of a change in tone for me. So, tell you what, you might need to go back and do a few more character drafts, ‘cause you got potential. It’s just… not very good.

SLYVESTER: That’s IT! I’m SICK of your blathering!

JULES: Cue dramatic rescue…

RONALD enters, in costume, SR, but without makeup on.


RONALD begins walking up to SLYVESTER.

SLYVESTER: So! Vicky without her costly makeup
Reveals herself ugly man indeed.

RONALD punches SLYVESTER, knocking him out. He then unties JULES.

JULES: You know, if Cronos sees that, you’re in trouble.

RONALD: Can’t wait. Besides, it looked like you needed the hand.

JULES: We better get rid of this guy. If you do that, I’ll warn Marion.

RONALD grabs SLYVESTER and drags him offstage as JULES runs into an entering MS. CRONOS.

JULES: Everyone’s ok no unconscious bodies see ya thanks bye!

He runs like wild from a bewildered Ms. Cronos. As Ms. Cronos looks around the stage, JULES sits in the audience with AUDIENCE VOICE.

AUDIENCE VOICE: Not bad… though your last line was appalling.

JULES: I’m sorry, I’m just trying to get used to this stuff.

AUDIENCE VOICE: You are truly more advanced than most of your peers. You alone have begun to see the strings. Now watch closely, my pupil.

CHUCK enters.

CHUCK: Hey, Ms. Cronos, can I talk to you?

MS. CRONOS: Sure. What is it?

CHUCK: I’ve… been trying to get others to laugh with me, for fun. But I saw how much I hurt Marion, and I realized what I’ve been doing to everyone else. I’d like to apologize.

MS. CRONOS: (obviously with something else on her mind) Good to hear, dear. Now get ready… the final performance starts soon. Break a leg!

She exits SR.

AUDIENCE VOICE: Do you see what fool controls your lives? How rushed character development is the lamb to a joke slaughter? These holes in reality, these ‘plotholes…’ things become unpredictable when they are introduced. The other world does not like this. They want the play’s life to mimic their own, but in a more exciting way. But now, the life of this play begins to slow down to a crawl!

JULES: … oh wait! That’s my cue!

AUDIENCE VOICE: You’re learning.

JULES then sprints in to meet CHUCK.

JULES: Chuck… umm, hide. I’ll explain later.

CHUCK: Where to?

JULES: Try the girl’s dressing room. No one’s using it for this ‘accurate’ satire.

CHUCK leaves, and RONALD emerges from the other side.

JULES: I told Marion what’s going on. Is Slyvester put away?

RONALD: Of course! He’s stored up in the girl’s dressing room No one’s using it for this ‘accurate’ satire.

A pause. Then…

JULES: Umm… about that…


JULES: I… umm… I think I have some lighting cues to take care of! Must go!

He sprints offstage to rejoin AUDIENCE VOICE.

RONALD: Why do I get the feeling that no one knows what’s going on?

MS. CRONOS: (offstage SR) Ten minutes until the show starts!

RONALD: Thank you, ten minutes!

MARION enters SL.

MARION: Is Jules still here?

RONALD: Just ran off. Why?

MARION: Oh, nothing. Now, it’s only a matter of time before Sylvester wakes up. So now what?

RONALD: Can Ms. Cronos lock the room?

MARION: What reason would we give her?

RONALD: We could just tell her the truth.

They both stare at each other for a few counts. Unable to hold it in any longer, they crack up, laughing loudly for a good long time.

MARION: Ahhhh… but seriously, she hates me, and she can’t take you seriously when you’re in costume.


MARION: It was your idea.

RONALD: It was funny until it wasn’t…

MARION: Really, the truth might just be our only hope here.

MARION and RONALD begin to talk amongst themselves silently.

JULES: …huh. I guess this is wrapping up quite nicely.

AUDIENCE VOICE: Jules, this is bad. The other world I told you about hungers for drama, and this is killing it. The play’s been thrown out of control as it is.

JULES: So now what?

AUDIENCE VOICE: Isn’t it obvious? You must accept your destiny as a main character. You must move the plot along.

JULES: But my friends…

AUDIENCE VOICE: You have never had any friends! These are all actors, useless as you were until I brought you under my wing! If you want to make friends, learn to love your new masters in the other world! Now move quickly! The show must go on!

JULES: But what…


JULES leaps onstage from his seat.

MARION: … Jules?

RONALD: … how did you do that?

JULES: … the show must go on.


JULES: It must go on… or not.

RONALD: What are you thinking?

JULES: Those two characters we locked up will swordfight in the show.


JULES: We have ten minutes until the show starts.


JULES: And if there’s a disaster backstage… I mean, something REALLY big… they’ll announce at the beginning that there won’t be a show.

RONALD: …NO. No way.

MARION: I actually kind of like that. C’mon, Ronald… It’ll get us into trouble…

RONALD: Too much, really.

MARION: It’s better than my plan B. I’d make a big speech about how I’ll refuse to do it. They can’t go on after that; I’m the main character.

RONALD: No you’re not.

MARION: Well, I should be.

RONALD: Still… Plan A’s not much better…

JULES: Awwwww… wimping out?

RONALD: You wish! I’ll cut the power, you scatter the actors!


MARION heads offstage SL with JULES, RONALD exits opposite way. CHUCK and SLYVESTER enter in from the same way a little while afterwards.

CHUCK: So I’m really glad you’ve decided to listen to me about how I feel.

SLYVESTER: Chuck, Chuck, my friend, it’s all right. I’ve gotten a bit carried away by the show as well.

MS. CRONOS: (offstage SR) Eight minutes!

CHUCK and SLYVESTER: Thank you eight minutes!

SLYVESTER: Say, Chuck, our swordfight is still a bit shaky. Do you want to practice it before we go onstage?

CHUCK: (smiling) Sure, just make sure I don’t kill you.

SLYVESTER: (laughs) Very good, Chuck, very good!

CHUCK grabs his sword from a pile of props in the room and gets into a battle stance. SLYVESTER already has his sword with him.

CHUCK: Vicky, stay back! This deary land of woe
Remains an unsuitable place for a
Gal like you. So, Herbert, we then must face.
Thou art as strong as Ares is peaceful.

MARION enters SL.

MARION: Chuck! Don’t let him fool you! He really is the villain!

SLYVESTER: You cur! Are you completely feckless, sir?

CHUCK: No, I’d consider myself to have feck,
At least more than in terms of some brains.
I’ll make you Sing, Sing… sing… can I skip that line? It’s terrible.


MS. CRONOS: Six Minutes!

EVERYONE ON STAGE: Thank you six minutes!

MARION: He insulted you, Chuck!

CHUCK: I thought you knew me better than that!

SLYVESTER: This can’t be, if you love that brute Vicky.

MARION: (unwillingly) We do… but that’s all you’ll ever be good for.

CHUCK pauses for a bit. He is genuinely speechless for a moment. After a while, he tries to croak out some words.


CHUCK lunges at MARION, swinging his sword. JULES walks in, oblivious to what is going on, and CHUCK runs right into him. CHUCK stands up right away, and tries to continue his charge, but is tripped again by JULES as he tries to get up. SLYVESTER tosses MARION his sword.

SLYVESTER: (smiling) Aim for the knee.

An improvised sword fight commences between MARION and CHUCK. CHUCK swings like a maniac, and MARION, uncoordinated with a sword, barely avoids the blows. While this occurs, JULES stumbles around in a daze, knocking into lights, props, and nearly everything else in his path.

CHUCK: You can’t stop this show!

MARION: Chuck, I’m sorry…

CHUCK: I’ve had eno…

From behind him, JULES puts a full-nelson on CHUCK, giving MARION a break. As the two men struggle, SLYVESTER grabs the sword out of MARION’s hands, eying CHUCK with a sense of victory.

MARION: (trying to grab the sword back) Can’t you just quit it?

SLYVESTER: (finally gaining full control over the sword) Oh, it’s far too late for that. If there’s no god for justice, I will make justice myself!

Suddenly, the lights go out. All the action stops.

SLYVESTER: Sorry about that, God! You can put the lights back on now.

RONALD: I found the light switch!

CHUCK: Great timing, bimbo.

JULES: Bimbo?

SLYVESTER: Wait, who turned out the lights again?

MARION: It’s okay, everyone! We turned out the lights so that we can explain a few things. Long story short, Slyvester’s trying to kill Chuck.

SLYVESTER: Wait, kill? And besides, you were the one holding the sword.

MARION: So? You have it now.

SLYVESTER: Of course I don’t.

JULES: I did pretty well back there, huh Marion?

CHUCK: I knew it, Herbert! No amount of devilry could disguise your devilry!

RONALD: I don’t think you saw this coming.

MARION: I know you’re lying, Sly Locked.

JULES: What do you say, Marion?

SLYVESTER: Did I lie to you about my plan? I don’t have the sword.

RONALD: Oh, that’s right! Chuck, watch out for Slyvester’s sword. It’s lethal!

MARION: Yeah, great timing Ronald.

JULES: Oh yeah… I forgot! Locked has a lethal sword!

MS. CRONOS: (offstage SR) Three minutes!

CHUCK: Shut up, three minutes!

MARION: Chuck, do you have the sword now?

CHUCK: For now, until I shove it up Herbert’s…

A crack is heard.

MARION: Hey, that’s my skull!

CHUCK: Oh great, he got the stage manager too!

JULES: Darn it!


JULES: Oh nothing.

MARION: Jules…

JULES: Oh, all right. I lost him.


JULES: The bad guy.

CHUCK: That doesn’t narrow it down…

JULES: Hang on; he said he didn’t have the sword. Who does?


RONALD: (with absolute sincerity) You know, I think I’m starting to enjoy myself now.

MARILYN: Good for you. So, if… wait, do you guys hear that? Sounds like someone’s coming in.

CHUCK: Whoever’s lurking around can leave! If you don’t, I will crucify you upside-down after pulling out all of your fingernails with the stinger of a bee…

The lights go back on. Each of the actors have scattered from their previous position, and SLYVESTER is nowhere in sight. CHUCK holds one sword, and the other one is held by JULES. The last one is held by MS. CRONOS, who’s standing by a light switch on SR.

CHUCK: ...until… until I say a very polite hello to Ms. Cronos!

MS. CRONOS: Hello, dears.

MARION: We are so a duck.

JULES: Hello, Ms. Cronos! Well, we seem to have a long story to tell you!

MS. CRONOS: It’s all right, Mr. Clifton, it’s all right. I came here after someone shouted at me to shut up to see what the matter was. I’ll try to be gentle with you kids. You obviously have a lot on your plate, putting on this show. You’ve gone through long rehearsal nights, a difficult script, missing props, dropped lines, Marion Cutio, ungrateful kids, bad actors, not getting the raise you wanted, going home to your kids in high school to off and on whining and whining about, “Why can’t we do what we want? Why? Why, why why?” bad days teaching, crewmembers asking stupid questions, and a full-fledged brawl on the night of my show! MY SHOW! This is the NIGHT, this is my SHOW, and NO ONE WILL TAKE THAT FROM ME!

From behind here SR, SLYVESTER leaps out and puts a bag on her head, though she continues shouting incoherently throughout it.

SLYVESTER: My thoughts exactly… this is my show now.

SLYVESTER takes the sword and brandishes it at CHUCK. RONALD steps in between SLYVESTER and CHUCK

MARION: What are you doing?

RONALD: (winks) Trust me.

SLYVESTER: Step aside. I only have an issue with Chuck.

RONALD: You know, I thought you dropping your ridiculous method acting would reveal a kinder person. Guess what?

CHUCK: He dropped it?

SLYVESTER: You push your luck.

JULES: Hey, umm, could we get Ms. Cronos out of here?

The cast looks at MS. CRONOS, who’s still roaming around with the bag on her head and shrieking.

CHUCK: Nose goes, oh wait I didn’t touch my nose, GOTTA GO!

He sprints towards MS. CRONOS, grabbing her and taking her offstage SR. SLYVESTER and RONALD pursue him.

SLYVESTER: Come back here and fight like a man!

RONALD: Come back! I didn’t finish my heroic sacrifice!

They both exit SR.

MARION: It’s about time we had a moment of peace, isn’t it?

JULES: Not for me. I’ve finally opened my eyes. I just don’t know what I’m seeing

MARION: What? Jules, just think for a bit.

JULES: Why wasn’t it you? Everyone else knows how to act like they’re the main character in their own play. Why was I chosen? There’s no way you can mean less to the world than me. No way.

MARION: … I wish this were a play. I don’t see an easy way out of this.

JULES: I just need a bit of time to think…

MARION: Are you crazy!? We need you here!

JULES: No, I think you need to calm down for a bit. I get it now. What Ms. Cronos said was right… we’ve all done too much.

MARION: We can be heroes! We can save this play, and become famous!

JULES: Don’t you get it? You’re… well… arrgh… you’re the problem with this! I mean, not you specifically…

MARION: No offence taken yet.

JULES: …but you’re all… overreacting. It’s misplaced… I don’t know, self-importance in the world.

MARION: Jules, in case you’ve been gone for a while, Sly tried to KILL Chuck!

JULES: And you knocked him out and decided to kill the play anyways? You couldn’t turn him over to Ms. Cronos and call the cops? I did so, but I’m too late. Instead, you’re going through all of these ‘heroics,’ and these games until it stops being fun! Look, this was my life too, once. Personally, I’ve found more than I’ve been looking for. I’d like for you to come run away with me…if you leave behind the drama… that’s it!

MARION: What’s it?

JULES: You’ll think I’m…

MARION: I thought you were crazy when you were a freshman. A year later, I know it.

JULES: So the ‘plotholes’ he described have unpredictable affects if discussed… and earlier, he mentioned something about ‘correcting itself.’ He said I could have ‘powers over reality.’ I’m not sure if it will give me more time, but… The whole ‘kill the play’ thing was kind of forced… wasn’t it?


The VOICE FROM THE MIDDLE OF THE AUDIENCE turns out to be the DIRECTOR (preferably played by the actual director of this play), who walks onstage.

DIRECTOR: What have I told you about ad-libbing!?

MARION: (as a completely different character) Oh come on, it wouldn’t change the play at all.

RONALD, SLYVESTER, CHUCK, and MS. CRONOS all enter in with their costumes in different places on their bodies.

SLYVESTER: (as a completely different character) What’s happening?

MS. CRONOS: (as a completely different character) Is something wrong?

DIRECTOR: (insert the name of the actor playing JULES here) was ad-libbing again.


MARION: What? It’s something Jules would do. Although we never did see that conversation with him and that Audience-Voice thing…

CHUCK: (as a completely different character) It’s not like it’s that good of a script anyways.


CHUCK: I mean it; this whole thing is a mess. Remember how we foreshadowed a deal beforehand with you and Ronald? The script edits dropped that! Never to be heard of again.

RONALD: (as a completely different character) (speaks rapid Spanish for about twenty seconds or some comedicly appropriate time)

MARION: And what about that great exchange we dropped out? (To MS. CRONOS) You start.

MS. CRONOS: (back in old character) “Is anybody hurt?”

MARION: (back in old character) “No, just a crew member!”

MS. CRONOS: “Thank goodness! I thought it was somebody important!”

MARION: (back to real self) You see? The audience likes it!

DIRECTOR: Audience?

Everyone on stage looks at the audience in sheer terror for a slow, long time. Then, panic erupts between the actors except JULES, who’s still trying to think.

DIRECTOR: All right, everyone, calm down! (Does whatever routine he/she usually does to calm the actors down) Ok, I know the last bit of the play forces the Shakespeare connection a bit and makes no sense, but the show must go on! We’re in the home stretch! No one can realize that we were all up here not acting.

JULES: Wait, we’re not acting?


DIRECTOR: But to get everybody ready again, we need a distraction. How about Ms. Cronos does that dance I had planned while everybody gets the rest of the stage and costumes back in order?

MS. CRONOS: (back to real self) You mean the dance that was so out of place that we mutinied?

DIRECTOR: Look, we don’t have many options. (Refers to the audience) They’re here for a show!

All the actors except for RONALD, MS. CRONOS, and SLYVESTER move offstage to get ready. SLYVESTER goes down to prepare to play music while MS. CRONOS takes front and center stage.

RONALD: (asks a question in rapid Spanish for about five seconds)

DIRECTOR: Next to the box of chicken. Now let’s MOVE IT!

The Boston Pops Orchestra’s version of “Sing Sing Sing,” plays as MS. CRONOS begins her dance and everyone else does a routine setting up props, sets, and costumes in time to the music. As the song goes on, everyone except JULES begins to return to their previous characters… Sly starts to sabotage the efforts, CHUCK gets angrier, etc. JULES starts out staying out of things and thinking, but gets drawn in more and more in order to help others. Once the song ends, MS. CRONOS takes a bow and exits. JULES and MARION are back on stage.

JULES: … I got nothing. Telling the truth would make things worse. If there’s anything I could say, I’d tell you to stop acting like your life is all one big play. Well, it is, but that’s not the point. I’d like for you to come run away with me…if you leave behind the drama.

RONALD enters SL.

RONALD: Darn it, I lost them! And it was starting to get fun too…

JULES: Et tu, Ronald?

JULES leaves SR

RONALD: Huh. That was weird. (To MARION) Are you okay?

MARION: Well, after the attempted murders and hysterics… yeah, sure, okay.

RONALD: Look, Marion, we’ve got to take care of this quickly. Ms. Cronos is out of her bag, and everyone got scattered in this one room where the lights went dark and we tripped on all the props.

CHUCK enters SL.

RONALD: Hang on… hey Chuck!

CHUCK: What now?

RONALD: I have a dare for you…

CHUCK: What, now?

RONALD whispers something into CHUCK’s ear.

CHUCK: No! No way! No means no, and so does yes!

RONALD: C’mon man… it’ll be funny…

CHUCK: But… I’m… arrgh…

RONALD: Chuck, unless you do so, I don’t think we can be friends.

MARION: Chuck… please think about it before you…

CHUCK: …Alright, fine!

He walks offstage SL.

CHUCK: (offstage, behind the stage) Hey audience! Do you want a show?

From offstage, a loud gasp is heard from the audience.

MARION: Did he… You told him to do WHAT?

RONALD: See? I knew it would be hilarious.

MARION: But why…

RONALD: During the chase, I saw some cops prowling around the audience. Chuck’s not as quick as Sly, but I don’t think he can get to him now.

CHUCK: (offstage) Hey! Stop that! I’ve got my rights, ya fascist pork rind sandwich! OW! Hey!

The sounds of his shouting gradually die out.

MARION: No, I meant, ‘why have you been doing all of this to Chuck.’

RONALD: ...oh, that! Well, twisting him into a being dependent on the satisfaction of others may seem despicable, but turns me into a greater being through the realization that all of us are like that, ergo, the enlightenment and truth are both realized and not realized simultaneously.

MARION: … huh?

RONALD: Don’t worry. I understand that you won’t understand.

MARION: … you don’t understand why yourself, do you?

RONALD: Of course I do! Or don’t, whatever works for me. I have my reasons!


RONALD: I think your buddy got himself into more trouble.


RONALD nods his head to the SL door, which SLYVESTER quickly goes to and looks out of.

SLYVESTER: You… You’ve wanted to be a target for a long time… and I’m in the mood to grant your wish.

MARION: (standing at the SL door) He’s lying. I sent Chuck there.


SLYVESTER: I should have known. Now, where was I? Ahh yes… DIE.

He charges at her with a war cry, though MARION sits perfectly still. Suddenly, he steps aside, allowing SLYVESTER to run right past him and to off stage SL. Outside, the sounds of crashing noises and shrieking audience members pervades the air.

SLYVESTER: (offstage, behind the stage) Ummm…
I pray you, give me leave to go from hence;
I am not well: send the police away
From me, and I’ll do in Chuck, er, go then.

Loud shouts and complaints are heard from the crowd in the background. SLYVESTER shouts out random interjections, such as, “I have my rights!” and “There ain’t no justice!” and “ARRRRGGGGHHH!”, but those sounds fade away into nothing after a while.

RONALD: Well that was anticlimactic.

MARION: I know.

MARION begins to walk offstage SR.

RONALD: Where are you going?

MARION: To Ms. Cronos. I’ll own up to what’s happened, at least my part in it.

RONALD: Are you crazy? After all of this, she’s probably nuts enough to lay the entire blame on you. You’ll never set foot in this school, and you probably won’t get a job too.

MARION: Dramatics aside, someone has to do it.

RONALD: I think Shakespeare has gone into your head.

MARION: (laughs) Well, I’ll get it out one day. Want to come with me?

RONALD: Nahhh… um, m­­ore personal growth when I keep running.

MARION: Just keep telling yourself that. Maybe after all of this, you can let me into your house to hide, Ronald. I better go before I faint.

 He begins to leave again.

RONALD: Look; I’m sorry if I was a bit over-dramatic, okay?

MARION: A plague on both your houses! You and Sylvester and Chuck have made worms’ meat of me: I also tried to prove myself, and soundly too: your houses!

He leaves SR.

RONALD: …Well, I guess that’s it with that. Maybe I should get some rest… I feel like a desperate pilot, running on the dashing rocks the seasick weary bark of my ship! (He grabs a water bottle from backstage) Here’s to my pain! (He chugs it down) O true apothecary!


RONALD: That Marion is quick. Thus, with a kiss, (he blows a kiss to the direction in which Ms. Cronos shouted.) I fly.

He runs offstage SL. By this point, JULES is sitting next to AUDIENCE VOICE.


JULES: (as ACT III is being set up) … that’s it? That’s all my life has been building towards?!

AUDIENCE VOICE: But you are saved. The other world likes you, Jules. That’s were your privileges come from. I don’t understand the trouble.

JULES: But… but… isn’t this bad form? This comedy just became a tragedy out of nowhere!

AUDIENCE VOICE: Well, if Romeo and Juliet can get away with it, than so can we. You didn’t think your feelings for your ‘friends’ were genetic smashups, did you?

JULES: … you leave me no choice. Guys, Codeword Epi.

The curtains start to pull back.


JULES: You don’t give a kid powers over reality and not expect a little extra thrown in.


The stage is bare. MS. CRONOS steps forward center-stage.

MS. CRONOS: Welcome to this year’s production of CYANIDE: THE LOST SHAKESPEARE PLAY, directed by myself and written by ‘William Shakespeare’ and Slyvester Locked, err, William Shakespeare! I understand that there are rumors floating about last year’s production. I can assure you all that there never was such trouble, nor will there be. But, if you would like some assurance, I’d like for one of last year’s actors to read an apology note he prepared about last year’s absent show.
CHUCK sets forward.

CHUCK: “If we shadows had offended,
Think but this, and all is mended,
None of us act in this year’s show,
(Some of us are in jail, you know),
And in this weak and idle play,
Actors may don costumes today,
They will be reprehended:
Their realities blended
As one. If my name is not Chuck,
The last show gave us great luck,
Enough to ‘scape the dread path
Of drama and others’ wrath,
Else the Chuck a liar call…

JULES: I suppose this is my cue. Goodbye, other world, and good luck to ya, Chuck! (leaves)

So, good night unto you all.
Give me your hands, if we be friends…
OUR LIVES ARE A PLAY! GO! As fast as you can.”

He runs offstage. Blackout.

AUDIENCE VOICE: Huh. Well, I suppose all I can say is “that’s show business.”