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THE NIGHT OF THE LIVING HEARTLESS: A One-Act Play for Halloween: Scenes 4-6

Scene 4: Missy and Todd walk quickly through the slush covered streets. The snow is coming down harder and begins to accumulate. The city is still black. They shiver. Todd tries to hail down a cab – with no luck for some 20 minutes. Finally, one pulls up and some 15 minutes later pull up in front of their brownstone. Thank God. The fee is $13 and Todd hands the cabbie his debit card.

Cabbie: “Declined. Insufficient funds.”

Todd: “Wait, no way; there’s plenty of money in that account. Well, here use this credit card.”

A moment passes. “Sorry, declined. Over the limit.”

Todd to Missy, “What the…Shit, I have no cash.”

Missy to Todd, “Oh, my God, my wallet’s gone from my pocket book.”

Missy, “Look driver, can I run up stairs and get some cash.”

“Ok, sure – but he stays.”

A few minutes later, Missy returns looking like she had seen a ghost.

What’s the matter?”

“The key doesn’t work; I tried the spare as well. Someone’s changed the lock.”

Todd stares at the building in disbelief.

The cab driver is getting antsy. “Look folks, pay up now or I call the cops.”

“But sir, we have no money.”

“OK, I call the cops.”

Scene 5:  Hands cuffed behind their back, Todd and Missy sit in the back seat of the squad car.

Missy, “But officers we did nothing wrong.”

The cop riding shot gun, Officer Battis, turns and looks at Missy. She screams. His face eyes are sunken, his skin mummified. He grins, staring at the nape of her neck. His partly opened mouth reveals two large and sharp canine teeth, looking reddish.

The driver, Sargent Lobo, gives his partner a shove. “Not now, you fool. We’re supposed to bring these guys in.” But in the next moment Lobo turns and leers (wolfishly) at Missy. “Don’t worry folks, the worst is yet to come.”

Hideous laugh, sounding like Zacherley, the host of an old 60’s Friday night TV horror show.

Scene 5: Still cuffed, Todd and Missy are brought into a large, dimly lit court room. A judge and a group of … jurors… sit on a high bench in front of the room. As their eyes adjust they see that the judge and jury are wearing powdered and wigs.

Todd” she whispers, “they look familiar.”

Todd, “I’ll be damned, they are the same people from the Zuccotti Park camp. There’s the Texas blues guy, and the lady who we talked to.  And look, the judge, he’s the Black guy with the marine fatigues.

Missy, “Oh, my God; they have McBludgeon in a cage. Like Mubarak.  

True. There sitting in the cage dressed like a Bowery bum is James McBludgeon, III, his a smirk of contempt on his face.

Judge: “I see that the defendant is not in the least repentant.”

McBludgeon:  “What is this court? Where’s the warrant. Am I not to be represented by counsel?”

Judge: “Mr. McBludgeon, we have a warrant, robo-signed just this morning. And you cannot afford an attorney, we have taken away all of your ill-gained assets.”

McBludgeon: “You cannot be serious! What about a public defender?”

(The jurors all laugh).

Judge Mather played by Shamar Thomas the Marine Sargent who dressed in his Veteran’s uniform chastised police beating protesters.

Judge:  “Mr. McBludgeon, there is no public defender here. We do, however, have a public offender.”

McBludgeon: Public Offender? Who does he offend?

(Jurors chortle)

Judge: “Who else, the Public Offender offends the defendant; that would be you.”

McBludgeon, defiantly: “Never mind, I’m an attorney, I shall defend myself.”

Judge: “As you please. But you won’t get very far. The jury is about to render their verdict. I shall now read the charges.”

McBludgeon: “But…errr… your honor, I am entitled to be judged by a jury of my peers, and these are surly not my peers.”

Judge: “You are correct; this is a jury of your fears.”

(Wicked guffaws from the Jury.)

Judge: “Your worst fears.”

McBludgeon: “Then, I take it the verdict is a forgone conclusion.”

 Judge: “Whatever….I will now read the charges. 1. Causing severe pain in your fellow human beings for your own enrichment, in short, robbing people of their homes. 2. Taking pleasure in the pain you inflict in others. 3. Having the gall to celebrate the first two offenses on the most important day of the year, Halloween. Finally, you are charged with contempt of court by appearing  without a suit and tie.” (Jury howls)

McBludgeon: But…

Judge: “Will the Jury render its verdict. What say you?”

Elderly Woman: “Your honor, the Jury finds the defendant guilty of all charges.”

Judge: “Well James, your goose is cooked. I shall now read your sentence. Since you have robbed others of their most precious possession – their homes. We will take yours. Since you have apparently have no ability to walk a mile in another’s shoes, we will take away your shoes … and disable your feet. You will be confined to a wheelchair for the next five years, and you will have to beg for your subsistence on the streets.”

(Missy gasps; the Jury howls and claps and laughs ghoulishly).

 McBludgeon: What about my wife?

Judge: “We hear she is filing for divorce; fortunately for you, you won’t have to pay alimony; we have stripped away all of your assets.” (Jury titters). They have been donated to the homeless.  (Jury applauds)

Judge: Bailiffs, please remove the prisoner.”

McBludgeon is rolled out in his new wheelchair. The bailiff hands him a tin cup.  

Judge: “Bailiff, please bring up the next defendants; let’s see, Melissa Fairchild and Todd Whitson.”

 Todd: “Please your honor, we meant no harm; we were just doing our jobs.” (Jury groans).

Judge: “Just doing your job? Well I’m just doing mine. You are charged with knowingly and fraudulently participating in a scam to rob people of their homes.”

Missy: “Please have mercy. Please for god sakes, don’t put us in wheel chairs.”

Judge: “Fine, since you are young, have some feelings for one another and may be redeemable, we release you. You are free to go.  But, hmm, your fate awaits you.”

Todd: “But what is our fate?”

Judge: “I am a jurist, not an auricle. Bailiff, please  release the defendants.”


Scene 6: Todd and Missy are in the back seat of a cab. Todd’s card worked in the ATM. They cling to one another, breathing, but cold and shaken. Finally they arrive back at the brownstone. Thank God. The wet snow continues to fall.

Missy: “I hope the key works this time.”

Todd: “Let’s see; seems to be working.”

But as the door opens, water spews out.

Missy: “Oh my God, there must be a terrible leak in the roof.”

Todd: “Leak? It’s more like the East River.”

Just then a bunch of trick and treaters dressed as ghosts and demons, comes to the stoop. They are eerily transparent and shimmering.

Ghost: “Looks a bit damp.”

Witch: “Watch out for sharks” (Hideous laughter)

Goblin: “Yeah, Loan sharks (Muffled groans at the pun)

Just then several sheriffs are seen carrying furniture out to the curb.

Todd: “What the Hell…

Missy: “Oh my God!”

Todd to sheriff: “What’s the meaning of this?

Sheriff: “Foreclosure; here’s our warrant.”

Todd: “But, we’ve paid our mortgage.

Sheriff: “Check bounced. (Ghosts and demons guffaw).”

Witch: “Yeah, looks like you’re…. under water.” (Guffaws, groans, whistles). 

As the curtain falls one of the sheriffs erects a large sign, “FORECLOSED: CONTACT THIRD  BANK OF AMERICA, 1-866-666-6666.

The The Brownstone owned by Todd, Missy, and the Third Bank of America.

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