I’ve been struggling with the whole existential dilemma of, “What the fuck am I going to do with my life after college?” A common existential crisis all graduate students face, yet one of more pertinence if you’re say a graduate of the Arts or English -because what the fuck are you going to do with a BA in English (or Theatre)? But I’ve been mulling it over the past month, because I have to start being both honest and realistic with myself about this, and realization knocked me right in the god damned face.
I love acting -more than most things in this world - and I’ve grown accustomed to it’s long and tedious hours, how it constantly compromises my health and sanity, and what it actually does for me mentally. And while it does a lot of great things for me in all those areas, it’s also done a lot of damage. How so? (You may ask if you bother reading this post). I’ll tell you:
When I started in theatre when I was about four it was hobby, something that I just loved doing because it was fun and different from sports (I hated sports). As I grew up in theatre world it became more of a focus, something that I genuinely loved doing, as well something you had to literally tear me from kicking or screaming. But growing up in theatre I had this ludicrous amount of confidence in my craft (that I didn’t even know what my craft yet). I could literally go into an audition and come out knowing if I had it or not, and even in the times where my confidence over stepped its bounds I still had confidence. I think I actually annoyed people with how much confidence I exuded on a daily basis because it borded on arrogance and narcissism. So with this exorbitant amount of self confidence in my passion, how could one go wrong? Well, it’s easy to be confident in something that’s just a passion because you have nothing to lose. It’s the moment that you invest more than just your heart into it that it becomes a contingent for failure - for complete loss of self. And that is exactly what happened.
The moment I got into high school and I wasn’t pegged for leads or even a contendor for them, I started feeling the ground beneath my passionate foundation crumble, and I started becoming hungry, but in the worst of ways. I started lashing out at people, trying to take them down from the inside, instead of taking them down with my talent. I lost tact with my talent, I lost the spark that made me “talented” and I became too focused on my newfound craft that I lost what I loved about it. It got worse in college due to the amount of pressure I felt put on me to succeed (from both professors and my parents), and while I learned an ass crap of technique, I could no longer hone my passion anymore, causing me to be “in my head” and “critical” and “hungry for critique”. Instead of learning how to apply technique to passion I just learned to “hone” the lessons I had been taught but forgetting my heart in the process; making me methodical and far too analytical of an actor. Worse yet, I found myself over comparing myself to my peers, something I’ve grown so accustomed to that it’s really hindered personal relationships on a number of occasions, but I literally couldn’t stop myself (I was driving myself crazy). I wanted to be than _____ or more loved than ______. I wanted to be looked up to, and admired for my acting talents. I wanted to be revered and awarded for my efforts. All the while I lost my love for it and it became a job, instead remaining my craft and career. And so I realized something very important in the last coming weeks: I love theatre, with my whole heart and I will never stop performing, but until I can treat it as a passion and with the respect being passionate about it entails (not worrying about awards or compliments), I should focus these energies into something else, something I am inherently good at. What you may ask (if you’re still reading)? Writing.
I’ve been a writer longer than I’ve been a performer. It flows from my mind to my pen (or keyboard) almost effortlessly. While I’m not a flawless story teller I am remarkably talented at creating real people on stage, and telling their stories through their characters. This is where my confidence is. This is what I am good at. This is what i can be revered for (since that means so much to me for whatever godforsaken reason. So when I start knocking on grad school’s doors this is the talent I am going to present them with, and will gladly obsess and mull over to my heart’s content, because it does make my heart happy, and soothes my ever rapid mind. Does this mean I will stop performing though? Hell no. I love the stage, and it would take a mighty strong hook to keep me away from it, but playwriting is also my own sort of contribution to the stage. I get to be apart of the magic from it’s inception. I get to be the creator of thoughts, actions, words, dreams, and magic - which is really freaking cool if you think about it.
My life has had many unexpected twists and turns - not excluding this one - and I really never thought I’d take my next-to-final bow so early in the game, but I need to find my love of performing again. Away from all the pretense and my own neurosis of self confidence. But I definitely need to take this time away from the limelight and be apart of magic making for awhile, because there is nothing like watching your words leap from page to stage, and I can’t wait to see where my words can take me (since they’ve taken me on some pretty cool adventures thus far).
I’m going to find my grip again guys, so I’m not so unbearable to be around. And so my head can spin in lovely fashion again sans evil horrible thoughts. But mark my words: I am going to find my way in this crazy business. I have only yet begun.
A lone light comes up on the YOUNG BOY can be seen sleeping onstage. He tosses, turns, tosses, and turns, tosses and turns until a rather loud giggle is heard startling him awake. The light goes down, only to come up again, he is back asleep but this time a young, but mystical, girl (ELISSA) is next to him stroking his hair. He stirs awake, only long enough to catch her in the act, but just as he goes to catch her hand, the lights go down. As the lights fade slowly up for a third time, it is just before dawn, the light is only barely peaking onstage as the boy is seen sleeping once more. A soft song, almost like a lullaby is heard and MERCIELLA and HELENA appears standing behind him. This time YOUNG BOY does not stir or move. The women are holding hands, just as before, and MERCIELLA (as YOUNG MERCIELLA) is holding her rag doll, only MERCIELLA acknowledges YOUNG BOY’S sleeping form, putting the doll beside him.
Helena: Have you outgrown her?
Merciella (as Young Merciella): Of course not, mama, but he needs her more.
Merciella (as Young Merciella): The young boy.
Helena: Anotehr figment of the woods I presume.
Merciella (as Young Merciella): He’s not from here.
Helena: Where is he from?
Merciella (as Young Merciella): The future.
Helena: You’re such a silly girl, I’ve raised you right. Where’s Elissa?
Merciella (as Young Merciella): She was tending to the boy earlier, very curious.
Helena: As curious as you?
Merciella (as Young Merciella): Maybe more.
Helena: Call her for me? I need to rest.
As HELENA sits down, MERCIELLA steps forward, she raises her arms, as she is doing this a small hum is heard and MERCIELLA begins to sing.
Merciella (as Young Merciella):
Come come fair Elissa
Come down from your star
And play with us mortals
Where ever you are
Come come sweet Elissa
Come out from the bough
We’re await your arrival
If you’d just come down
Come Elissa Come
Sweet, beauty, fair
Come Elissa Come
ELISSA appears in pool of light downstage.
Elissa: Oh I do love that song.
Merciella (as Young Merciella): As only you could. (whispered, now as future Merciella to the boy) How is the boy?
Elissa: He’s almost here.
Merciella: How could you tell.
Elissa: He almost touched me.
Merciella: Did you run away before he could?
Elissa: Wouldn’t you?
Merciella (as Young Merciella): Come then, mother beckons you.
Elissa: How are you mother?
Helena: Stronger by the second, now that you’re here.
Elissa: I’ve brought you elderberries and moondust (she reaches in her a sack tied around her waist).
Helena: Thank you sweet child. (taking them and eats them)
Merciella (as Young Merciella): How are you now mother?
Helena: Stronger by the minute.
Merciella (as Young Merciella): Can we stay here?
Elissa: Yes, can you?
Helena: (touching Merciella’s face) As I fade, your bright light continues to shine. Showing the path to Carthia, it is now yours to keep, for as long as you’d like.
Elissa: Forever then?
Merciella (as Young Merciella): And ever!
Elissa: In that case. Tag you’re it!
Merciella (as Young Merciella): Not fair!
The two girls dart about the stage, to and fro, until they finally dart off, leaving HELENA, who is standing over YOUNG BOY.
Helena: As Carthia slips through my finger tips and into yours, I fade away, but Carthia is mine, forevermore. No one can seize it from under my grasp, no daughter, or nymph (to YOUNG BOY) nor peevish brat. She chose you? Of all people, she chose you? We’ll see how far you get, she thinks I cannot see you, and that may be mostly true, but I can feel you, as power shifts hands, but I am the master of the story, and this just cannot be.
HELENA exits stage, as lights start to shift down, YOUNG BOY’S singular light suddenly bursts on, as he sits up.
Young Boy (to the rag doll): I saw it. I saw her. She saw me? I must tell the maiden, I must warn her! I’ve found Carthia, but I don’t know for how long.
YOUNG BOY runs offstage, leaving the rag doll onstage, as the lights shift to blue out.
Scene 1 (continued)
Merciella (as Young Merciella): What’s Carthia?
Helena: It’s the place between sleeping and waking, just beyond Neverland, yet not qutie to Wonderland.
Young Boy: Is it Narnia?
Merciella: Not quite, that’s another story entirely.
Young Boy and Merciella (as Young Merciella): Can I touch it?
Helena: Only if you believe it’s really there.
Both the Young Boy and Merciella go to touch the nearest object, for MERCIELLA it’s the nearest tree trunk, and for the YOUNG BOY it’s a tiny flower. For MERCIELLA the tree trunk seems to flourish under her touch, she feels a slight vibration, that sets her aback a bit from it. She looks to HELENA in confusion and wonder, who only encourages her, with a slight nod of the head, to continue her curiosity. For the YOUNG BOY, however, the flower he goes to pick up is non-existant, as if he were touching air. He looks to HELENA, who cannot see or hear him in the same manner as MERCIELLA had, to no avail. He goes to MERCIELLA instead.
Young Boy; Why won’t she look at me?
Merciella: She can’t see you.
Young Boy: Can she see you?
Merciella: Of course, she’s my mother. I’m all she sees.
Young Boy: Why can you touch things, but I can’t?
Merciella: Do you believe what you’re seeing?
Young Boy: Yes?
Merciella: Do you really?
Young Boy: It’s all very lovely, but…
Merciellla: I thought you were special.
Young Boy: I can see it, can’t I?
Merciella: Believing is seeing.
Young Boy: No, seeing is believing.
Merciella: Do you see it? Do you really?
Before the boy’s eyes the stage turns to black. MERCIELLA and YOUNG BOY are left in spotlight, and HELENA is nowhere to be seen.
Young Boy: I thought I did. It was right here.
Merciella: Until you doubted yourself.
Young Boy: Will it come back?
Merciella: Only if you’re strong enough to overcome the doubt.
Young Boy: Was that the story?
Merciella: No boy, that was merely an introduction. Seeing Carthia is only the beginning of the tale.
Young Boy: Will I hear the rest of it?
Merciella: When you’re ready to see it for yourself.
Young Boy: Will she come back as well?
Merciella: I cannot tell the story without her.
Young Boy: When will the rest be told?
Merciella: (covering his eyes) When you see with your heart, and not your eyes, (whispered) between sleeping and waking.
When YOUNG BOY’s eyes open, MERCIELLA is gone, he is alone in spotlight, yet not completely alone as murmurs and giggles fill the space as the lights shift to blue out.
A beautiful woman, MERCIELLA, appears onstage, illuminated by a single light. She wears a white dress, that seems almost magical, and stands still looking towards the ground. All around her orchestration swirls, as well as the sound distant murmurs and giggles from all sides fill the stage. As the orchestrations and asides swell, she silently lifts her hands, gracefully, as if to silence all around her. Like a conductor conducting and orchestra all noise halts, as she puts one finger to her lips and smiles. She turns around, back facing the audience, and begins to leave when a small voice speaks. A YOUNG BOY, appears onstage.
Young Boy: You promised a story!
The murmurs flourish and the orchestration, changing tempo and rhythm begin to swell again. The young woman slowly turns to the audience, in the direction of the presumed voice, smiles, and giggles to herself.
Merciella: Oh, did I?
Young Boy: You did, one of great beautiful places, of adventure, and triumph over the bad things!
Merciella: Oh, I did, didn’t I? Hmmm, well let’s see. Shall I tell the story of the strapping Peter Pan?
Young Boy: We’ve much grown out of fairy tales.
Merciella: Peter was no fairy, he was a boy!
Young Boy: But he’s of myth and legend, pure fantasy.
Merciella: All I’ve got are your so-called, fairy tales.
She starts to wander back.
Young Boy: Unless what, maiden?
Merciella: I’m not quite sure you’re the right breed for the story I’ve got.
Young Boy: What breed do you require?
Merciella: A very special breed. I’ve very specific instructions.
Young Boy: Well, I’m special!
Merciella; That may or may not be true, but I can’t waste this story on a maybe.
Young Boy: Well, I’ve been told I’m very special.
Merciella: Has your mother told you that boy?
Young Boy: Every day.
Merciella: My mother told me the exact same thing when I was about your age, every day in fact, much like your mom.
Young Boy: And my mother never lies!
Merciella: They rarely do boy, unless it’s necessary, of course.
Young Boy: Well my mother never does, so I know I’m special>
Merciella: Well, you’ve got quite the spirit, this story requires, that’s for sure.
Young Boy: You’ll tell it then?
Merciella: If you wear a tree down to it’s nub it does indeed become a stool over time.
Young Boy: Pardon?
Merciella: I’ll tell it boy, but you’ve got to keep it a secret, for it’s a story that’s only meant for the truly special, not every soul can hear it’s magic and believe.
Lights shift to a pool of light at the corner of a stage. In that pool sits a woman, HELENA (MERCIELLE’S mother), MERCIELLE crosses to her mother and sits at her feet with her head in her mother’s lap, she’s gone back in time and is now four years old.
Young Merciella: Mama, tell me a story.
Helena: Alright, but you have to promise not to tell anyone, until you’re much older.
Young Merciella: A secret story?
Helena: Very secret, in fact so secret only a few people are special enough to hear it’s wonder.
Young Merciella: But why?
Helena: A story in the hands and hearts of the wrong person can be a very dangerous thing little one.
Young Merciella: But it’s just a story, right?
Helena: That’s for you decide, but promise me that you won’t tell it until you find someone equally as special to tell it to. Cross your heart?
Young Merciella: Cross my heart.
Helena: Pinky swear on Merrietta?
Young Merciella (looking at her rag doll) Okay, but why?
Helena: You’ll know once the story is finished. You trust me don’t you?
Young Merciella: Forever.
Helena: Okay…it starts as all stories do…
Helena and Young Merciella: Once upon a time….
The scene shifts suddenly, revealing a mythical forest -CARTHIA-, in the distance MERCIELLE can be seen crossing in the background with the YOUNG BOY and HELENA, all are holding hands. They have all now become passive participants in the storytelling, although HELENA and MERCIELLE still narrate it the going. The place is a cross between Neverland and Wonderland, but neither really, instead somewhere just in between the lands. The forest itself seems to glimmer and flicker as it’s a newly lit flame, and if by magic, off in the distance the same murmurs and giggles of earlier are heard every so often someone(s) flit across the stage, as if they were playing tag, splashes of water/waterfalls can be heard, yet even with all the commotion the forest itself is relatively peaceful, or at least at peace with it’s own mythical being.
Young Boy: Where are we?
Mercielle and Helena: Carthia.
Young Boy: Neat.
A metronome is heard and “Ode to Joy” is heard being played, by a live piano, however every few seconds the piano player messes up, a tap on the piano is heard. The lights slowly fade up on an upright piano, with has a picture frame on it, facing upstage and a pianist, who continues to play (and fumble at the same point every time). On the last fumble before lights are at full VOICE is heard.
VOICE: From the beginning.
PIANIST: The very beginning?
PIANIST sighs turns back to page one, and starts playing again, only to fumble at the same place again.
VOICE: From the beginning.
PIANIST: The very beginning?
Once again the PIANIST plays and fumbles at the same place.
VOICE: From the - from the - from the - from the -
As VOICE is repeating itself over and over again PIANIST gets up, exits stage, and a record scratch is heard, and after a moment the PIANIST returns to their place and patiently waits. Nothing happens for a few beats, a WOMAN enters.
WOMAN: It’s time.
PIANIST: From the beginning?
WOMAN: (shaking her head) To finish what you’ve begun.
VOICE: From the beginning.
PIANIST: The very beginning.
WOMAN: To the finish.
PIANIST: No, just the beginning.
WOMAN: It’s time.
PIANIST: I’m not ready.
WOMAN: No one ever is.
PIANIST: From the beginning then?
WOMAN: From the middle.
VOICE: From the beginning.
PIANIST looks offstage and then the WOMAN, and then offstage again towards VOICE.
WOMAN: If you must. From the beginning, then.
PIANIST: To the finish?
VOICE fills the room with WOMAN.
VOICE & WOMAN: It is time.
PIANIST nods and with a big inhalation of air turns back to the beginning, plays until the fumble, yet does not fumble, instead plays the piece with perfect precision. When finished WOMAN exits and VOICE fades away in the middle of “From the beginning”.
PIANIST closes book in solemn accomplishment, flips a picture frame downward, turns to the audience, bows their head, smiles, and leaves. PIANIST #2 (much younger than the first) enters sits down at the piano opens the book, as the voice of PIANIST fills the room.
PIANIST: From the beginning.
PIANIST #2: The very beginning?
PIANIST #2 plays “Ode to Joy” as lights slowly fade down, and fumbles much like the first PIANIST whose now become VOICE (on the record player). Lights fade to black until all that’s heard is the sound of the metronome and the new VOICE saying “From the beginning.”
Todd: It’s weird when I kissed her it was…nevermind.
Isabelle: Like what?
Todd: Like something was missing, like I was only kissing a part of her, like she wasn’t fully there with me in the kiss.
Isabelle: A disconnect or…?
Todd: More like a defense mechanism. Like she was afraid that if she put her all into it, and actually kissed me back she’d be admitting to herself that she felt something too, that liking a person - for more than just sex - wasn’t just some bizarre concept contrived from fairytales of old. Like, if she actually felt it too it’d be accepting a part of herself that she thought she reconciled a long time ago. Like she’s afraid that love, or even liking a person more than herself, is actually real than she’ll have to let go of control and fall into something that isn’t exactly tangible 24/7, something that isn’t mathematical or purely scientific; something that isn’t fully realized one hundred percent of the time, but is just…there. So she only puts out about forty-five percent at any given time, so as to assure herself that those feelings don’t accidentally bubble to the surface, so she doesn’t risk the moment - with whomever- is strictly sexual.
Isabelle: You’re reading too far into this.
Todd: I thought so too, until she moved her face away and started rubbing my crotch like a cat in heat.
Isabelle: So you’re saying, because she was trying to get in your pants that she’s incapable of liking you the way you like her?
Todd: By rejecting the kiss-only giving that forty five percent-and automatically going below the belt pretty much indicates exactly that. In fact, I bet if I tried to hold her hand, it’d produce very similar results. She can’t handle that type of intimacy.
Isabelle: Todd, a girl was actively trying to bed you, and you rejected her!
Isabelle: What’s wrong with you? I thought that’s what you wanted.
Todd: Wants and needs change constantly. Plus I find her vastly intriguing.
Todd: She’d make for a very interesting case study.
Isabelle: She’s a human girl, not a lab rat, and I doubt she’d even see you again.
Todd: Why’s that?
Isabelle: Rejection’s a cruel mistress, not many people want to test the waters with the same person after being tossed aside.
Todd: She gave me her number.
Isabelle:Before or after.
Todd: Does it matter?
Isabelle: I guess not.What exactly are you gonna test?
Todd: The varying reactions based on varied - increased and decreased - levels of intimacy in an effort to attain a greater understanding of emotionally distant human psyche.
Isabelle: Are you at least going to buy her dinner first?
Todd: I’ll do her one better.
Isabelle: I’m listening.
Todd: We’re going to date
Isabelle: Boyfriend/girlfriend status?
Todd: Flowers, chocolates, the whole shabang.
Isabelle: You’re going to break the poor girl.
Todd: I’d like to consider this, conditioning a human into normal human behavior patterns.
Isabelle: You’re going to Stepfordize her.
Isabelle: She is a human.
Todd: She will be once we’re done.
Isabelle: You’re a sick bastard.
Todd: All in the name of human psychology!
Isabelle: Just don’t come crying to me when she sues your sick and twisted ass.
Todd: We can rebuild her.
Isabelle: Oh god.
Todd: Make her stronger, faster, better.
Isabelle: There is no we, I’m leaving.
Todd: We will rebuild her!
JANA’S Apartment. Michael is sleeping on the doormat, Jana opens the door and nearly trips on him.
Jana: What the hell?
Michael: (groggily) Wha-is it morning?
Jana: Yes, dumb ass, it is.
Michael: Good morning.
Jana: You’re on my morning paper.
Michael: (stands up and hands it to her) Here you go.
Jana: Thank you. (takes the paper and slams the door)
Michael: You could at least invite me in for coffee.
Jana: You could at least not sleep at my door step like a lost puppy.
He starts whimpering and begging like a dog.
Jana: You can’t be serious.
He continues to do so, as Jana exits to the kitchen, coming with a cup of coffee, opens the door and sets it down in front of him.
Jana: Here you go boy. (patting him on the head) Good boy.
He gets up and starts to follow her inside before she slams the door in his face again, spilling some of his coffee on himself.
Michael: Hey! You didn’t scream.
Jana: Common courtesy.It’s nine in the morning.
Michael: And yet I’m still here.
Jana: Go home.
Michael: This is home. You’re my master.
Jana: That’s a whole lot of kinky shit that I’m not willing to get into right now.
Michael: Can you please let me in?
Michael: I need to piss.
Jana: There’s a public restroom in the lobby.
Michael: Will you still be here when I get back?
Jana: I make no promises.
He pretends to leave, she looks out through the peephole.
Jana: I see you idiot.
Jana: (laughs) Go pee!
Michael: Don’t go anywhere.
He leaves, she comes out and sits on the next to the door with her book. He’s gone a few minutes and comes back.
Michael: You came out.
Jana: Sure did.
He sits next to her, and puts his head on her shoulder as she reads.
Michael: Can we-
Jana: No talking.
Michael: Not even about the book?
Jana: Only about the book.
Michael: Deal. Does she love Buddy?
Michael: Are you sure?
Jana: He’s just a phase from her past.
Michael: That’s all?
Jana: No one can ever be really certain that past will remain there.
Michael: Do you think he’ll come back to her?
Jana: I’m pretty sure that’s not what this story is about. It’s only a part of the story.
Michael: But what if it’s everything?
Jana: No one can be everything. Just a lot of somethings.
Michael: So, he’s something?
Jana: He’s mentioned isn’t he?
Michael: But only briefly.
Jana: That’s still something.
Michael: I guess so.
Jana: Now shut up and let me read.
Michael: Buddy’s sorry.
Jana: She knows he is.
He kisses the side of her head, she gets up and goes back inside.
Michael: I’m really sorry.
Jana: I know.
Michael: Can I fix it?
Jana: Go home.
Jana: No, not tomorrow.
Jana: Just go home, please.
Michael: But I want to know what happens next.
Jana: It’s over.
Michael: You’re nowhere close to finishing the book.
Jana: Go home.
They both seem to inhale and exhale in unison, yet on seemingly different thoughts before exiting.
JANA’S Apartment. Consistent knocking is heard on the door. Jana is sitting on the couch reading a book.
Jana: Leave me alone. Leave me alone. Leave me alone. Leave me alone.
Michael: I know you’re in there.
Jana: That’s wonderfully creepy.
Michael: Open up.
Jana: Leave me alone.
Michael: I know you’re not busy.
Jana: There is no possible way you could know that.
Michael: You’re never busy.
She goes to the door and opens it a crack.
Jana: You know the saying: “Assuming just makes an ass out of you and me”? You’re making quite the ass of yourself right now.
Michael: I don’t care.
Jana: Neither do I.
Michael: So let me in.
Jana: I meant I don’t care about you, or your need to talk, or the fact that you’ve been at my apartment door every day for the past two weeks doing just this. I don’t care Michael.
Michael: So why did you open the door this time?
Jana: To gently tell you that if you don’t leave within the next five minutes I’m going to call the police.
Michael: I don’t believe you, you don’t own a cell phone.
Jana: And you would know that because if I did you’d certainly be calling me every hour on the hour wouldn’t you? I have a cop that lives at the end of my hall, and a superintendent.
Jana: You underestimate the power of a feminine scream of anguish, or in this case annoyance.
Michael: Jana…don’t slam…
Jana: You have five minutes.
She slams the door in his face and goes back to reading on the couch.
Michael: I’m not leaving.
Jana: Four minutes.
Michael: You can test me all you want. We will talk, and it will be tonight.
Jana: Four minutes and thirty seconds.
Michael: I will stand right here until you open this door.
They both stay in their respective positions, Jana reading on the couch, periodically checking her watch, and Michael standing outside of the door for exactly a minute.
Jana: Three minutes.
Michael: You’re still counting down?
Jana: Are you still standing there?
Jana: Then I’m still counting down.
Michael: Why are you doing this?
She doesn’t respond, instead she continues to read her book as if she didn’t hear the last question.
Michael: What page are you on?
Jana: Of what?
Michael: The Bell Jar. What page are you on now?
Jana: Sixty (thumbs through the pages) five.
Michael: Seriously? You were on fifty six last time I was here.
Jana: I’m a slow reader. I like to savor my books.
Michael: What’s happened so far?
Jana: She’s just recounted the story of her first love affair with Buddy Willard.
Michael: Was it swooping and magical?
Jana: Not exactly. He made assumptions about her sexual experience, and to be fair she did the same, only to find out that he was a complete and total hypocrite about the whole thing - which made her dislike him immensely.
Michael: I guess she must hate him now.
Jana: She wants to.
Michael: Why doesn’t she?
Jana: Because he got TB and is in braces.
Michael: She won’t tell her what she thinks of him out of pity?
Jana: Common courtesy. She’s pretty sure he’s going to die.
Michael: That’s still pretty fucked though.
Jana: How so?
Michael: Well if I was going to die then I’d rather people tell me what they think of how I treated them, and what they thought of me, outright instead of coddling my feelings because of circumstance.
Jana: Are you sure about that?
Jana: You’re really going to tell me that you’d rather people condemn you for your horrible actions on your deathbed instead of telling you how much they care about you?
Michael: If it’s the truth - how they honestly feel - then absolutely.
Jana: But what if she tells him her honest to God feelings about him - her most horrible thoughts and feelings - and then something happens?
Michael: Then at least he’d know, and he wouldn’t go to the other side believing something that wasn’t true in the slightest.
Jana: But what if she feels awful about it?
Michael: Then there’s probably something she left out - she wasn’t telling the whole truth.
Jana: How can she be sure?
Michael: You never know until you say it.
Jana: Somethings are better left unsaid.
Michael: Tomorrow then?
Michael: Maybe you’ll actually open the door.
Jana: And maybe I’ll scream.
Michael: We’ll see tomorrow.
He walks away, as she runs to the door, she looks out the peephole.
Jana: Tomorrow then.
Michael: Jana. (knocks on the door) Jana. JANA.
Jana: (through the door) What?
Michael: Open the door.
Jana: (through the door) Can’t.
Michael: Why not?
Jana: (through the door) I’m kind of busy.
Michael: Doing what?
Jana: (through the door) Nothing.
Michael: Exactly, so let me in.
Jana: (through the door) I can’t do that.
Michael: I know where the key is you know.
Jana: (through the door) No you don’t. I moved it.
Michael: I know where all your hiding places are.
Jana: (through the door) Not this one.
Michael: How so?
Jana: (through the door) I…uh…ate it?
Michael: Get the fuck out. You did not.
Jana: (through the door) Sure did. Now, bye.
Michael: Fucking fibber.
Jana: (through the door) Did you just call me a fibber?
Michael: A spade is a spade my love, especially when it’s a liar.
(A few beats and she bursts through the door and starts slapping on the arms, chest, etc.)
Jana: How dare you call me a liar! I don’t lie! I’ve never lied to you, why would I start now?
Michael: Ouch. Jana stop it! (grabs her wrists)
Jana: Take it back.
Michael: I take it back.
Jana: Thank you.
Michael: Got you out, didn’t I?
Michael: A man’s gotta do, what a man’s gotta do.
Jana: For a quick lay.
Michael: It’s not like that.
Jana: Whatever. You need to leave.
Michael: Why got another lover in there?
Jana: As a matter of fact.
(Opens door further and reveals to him that she does in fact have someone else.)
Michael: The fuck?
Jana: Yeah, so bye.
(Starts to walk back inside before he grabs her back)
Michael: I’ll kick his ass.
Jana: You’ll do no such thing. In fact, you’re going to march your ass back home right now.
Michael: I will do no such thing. I’m going to kick his ass.
(She shuts the door)
Jana: Go home.
Michael: Did you fuck him?
Michael: I’m leaving.
(He leaves only to come back.)
Michael: Did you really?
(He leaves only to come back again)
Jana: Felt like it.
Michael: But not me?
Jana: I told you that I don’t want to fuck you.
Michael: But you’ll fuck him?
Jana: I told you exactly what I want with you.
Michael: But you’ll fuck him?
Jana: I don’t want to fuck you Michael, what part of that is so hard to understand.
Michael: The not wanting to fuck me part.
Jana: You are such an asshole.
Michael: And you’re a little cocktease.
Jana: No I’m not. Take it back.
Michael: Can’t handle the truth?
Jana: I can’t handle it, because it’s not true.
Michael: I just want to fuck. What’s so hard to understand about that?
Jana: The part where I don’t want to fuck you.
Michael: Why is this such a big deal?
Jana: Because I’m not a slut.
Michael: (reaches behind her and opens the door) Obviously, you are.
Jana: Is that what you really think?
Jana: I think you know the way out.
Jana: Then I know my way back in. Have a nice life.
Michael: (reaches behind her, closes the door, and holds it closed) No.
Jana: Why won’t you just leave me alone?
Michael: Did you fuck him?
Jana: No, okay? He just passed out. Are you satisfied?
Michael: How can I know you’re telling the truth?
Jana: Because you know his boyfriend.
Jana: He’s gay. His name is Nico.
Michael: George’s boy?
Jana: Yes, can I go now?
Michael: You’re not a slut.
Jana: No, I’m not. But I’m starting to think you might be.
(Catching him off guard she quickly opens and enters through the door, leaving him alone.)
Michael: What are you?
Jana: A human.
Michael: I mean sexually.
Michael: I’m serious.
Jana: I don’t understand the question.
Michael: What are you?
Jana: A girl who likes sex.
Michael: With whom or with what?
Michael: So you’ll just do it with anyone?
Jana: Well not anyone, I guess.
Michael: What are the qualifications then?
Jana: My level of willingness and availability.
Michael: For instance…
Jana: If I’m in the mood and available to fuck, I will.
Michael: Are you available?
Jana: I guess, why?
Michael: Alright then. (unzips pants) How about now?
Jana: With you?
Michael: With me.
Jana: Right now?
Michael: All the way.
Jana: You’re serious.
Michael Why not?
Jana: There’s a level of interest involved as well.
Michael: Are you not interested?
Jana: Oh, I am. Completely interested.
Michael: Then let’s go.
Jana: I don’t want to fuck you.
Michael: Why not? You’re available, horny, and interested. I don’t see the hold up.
Jana: I don’t want to fuck you.
Michael: Come on!
Jana: Listen to the words that are coming out of my mouth. I don’t want to fuck you. Fucking is something two strangers do who have no real interest in anything more than the physical act of sexual experience. Fucking is what you do, down and dirty, nasty and naughty, with the lights off, shutters closed, doors locked, and music up real loud. Fucking is what happens when we have no regard for the other person’s feelings, and don’t plan on seeing them the next morning or even in the next century. I do not want to fuck you.
Michael: Then what do you want to do with me?
Jana: I want to have my way with you. Lights on or lights off, which ever is more comfortable for you. I want to ease into the act - making sure it’s something we both want in that moment. I want to explore you, and give you the opportunity to do the same. I want to spend hours just in the act without any pretense. I want to get lost in the act with you, so lost in fact that it will be the single most memorable thing either of us could ever do with each other, or with anyone else - for that matter. I want you to come so hard you see the stars of other universes and are able to name them by shape and distance, and I want you to do the same for me. What’s more, I want to wake up next to you the next morning. I want to see your stupid morning face in my stupid morning face, and I want us to remember what we did, and possibly do it all again. I want it to be something, instead of nothing.
(Silence over takes the room, all that’s heard is the sound of both party’s labored breathing)
Now what do you want to do with me, Michael? Do you want to fuck me?
Michael: God, yes.
(He goes to grab her by the hips, and possibly kiss her, but she stops the advance with a single palm to his chest, reaches down and zips his pants up.)
Jana: Goodbye Michael.