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19 Nocturne Boulevard


19 Nocturne Boulevard is an award-winning anthology audio drama series that ran from 2008 through 2013, and then went into deep hibernation.

RETURNING October 2020!!

Also the creator of Fatal Girl, Bingo the Birthday Clown, The Deadeye Kid, The Lovecraft 5, The Prisoner of Hancock House, The Decadence of Borrowed Silk, Eternal Dusk Roulette, and Atomic Julie's Galactic Bedtime Stories.                                                        Join our awesome Patreon supporters!

Sep 16, 2021

[warning - mature themes and explicit violence]

A surreal Q&A session reveals the workings of a victim's mind.

Cast List

  • Marnie - Julie Hoverson
  • Doc - Julie Hoverson
  • Jerry - Brandon O'Brien
  • Momma - Risa Torres
  • Harold - Mr. Synyster
  • Deputy Fred - Joel Harvey
  • Little Girl - Krystal Baker
  • Little Boy - Marhya Post
  • Grampa - Rick Lewis

Music:  Kevin MacLeod (Incompetech.com)

Editing and Sound:   Julie Hoverson 

Cover Photos:  Alan Bridges (courtesy of Stock Xchange.com)

"What kind of a place is it? Don't you know where you are?"

***********************************************************

Where are You Now?

This is a weird ass episode.

I wrote this very deliberately in a stream of consciousness style, probably inspired by a weird dream, but I don't remember specifically.

I did write the entire script in roughly one sitting, then cast and recorded it immediately - I wanted to see if I could make an entire episode in a single week, which I basically did.

The most challenging effect in this was throwing the chiffoniere down the stairs.

I actually have a sort of sequel - more in tone than using the same character(s), obviously - in mind, and may do it someday.  A big part of the idea for this was to make the vast bulk of the dialog mine, so I didn’t have to get too much out of other people, thus making it a quicker recording turnaround.

SPOILER ALERT!!!

I'm going to explain, sort of, what this episode is and what it means, at the end of the transcript, below.  A lot of info will be there, since most of my memories of making this are tied up in why I wrote what I wrote.

***********************************************************

WHERE ARE YOU NOW?

Cast:

  • Olivia
  • Doc (F/40+), german, sounds like shrink
  • Marnie (F/20), hysterical young woman
  • Harold (M/30), mush mouthed freak
  • Fred (M/30), a crooked deputy
  • Old Man (M/senile)
  • Creepy Little Girl (F/10)
  • Creepy Little Boy (M/10)
  • Momma (F/30ish), Mrs. Cleaver - with cleaver
  • Jerry (M/20), Marnie's dead boyfriend.

OLIVIA  Did you have any trouble finding it?  What do you mean, what kind of a place is it?  Don't you know where you are? 

MUSIC

 

SCENE 1.

SOUND     A SLOW CHORD, WHICH STAYS UNTIL NOTED

DOC    Where are you now?

MARNIE    [startled awake] What?

DOC    Can you hear my voice, Marnie?

MARNIE    Yes.

DOC    Where are you now?

MARNIE    [slightly panicked] I - I don't know.

DOC    Tell me what you see.

MARNIE    I see a room. 

DOC    Are there people in the room?

MARNIE    [fear] Yes!

DOC    You are safe, Marnie.  Calm down.  Now tell me what you see.

MARNIE    [calm, almost robotic]  I see five people sitting at the table. 

DOC    Are you sitting with them?

MARNIE    No, I'm in the corner. 

DOC    Do they know you're there?

MARNIE    [ominous] Oh, yes.

DOC    Tell me what they look like.

MARNIE    There's a very old man, a small boy, a girl who looks a bit older than the boy, a police officer, and a very large man with a bag over his head.

DOC    Is there food on the table?

MARNIE    No.  It's not here yet.

DOC    Good.  Tell me one thing about the little girl.

MARNIE    Her eyes can suck your soul.

DOC    Good.  And the old man?

MARNIE    He has a scar on his leg that aches when it rains.

DOC    Good.  Has the food arrived yet?

MARNIE    The one with the bag is named Harold.

DOC    Please answer only the questions I ask you, Marnie.

MARNIE    [frightened, small]  I'm sorry.

DOC    I forgive you. 

MARNIE    I love you.

DOC    That was not the question.

MARNIE    [trying to remember] Um. Um.  The food!  No.  Still no food.

DOC    Good.  Are you comfortable?

MARNIE    [lying, almost a whisper] Yessss.

DOC    Very good.  Tell me about where you are sitting.

MARNIE    I'm in the corner.

DOC    Are you in a chair?  Look down.

MARNIE    It's a chair with wheels, and straps. 

DOC    Straps?  Are you strapped in?

MARNIE    [breathing hard, getting louder and louder] Yes - my hands are - hands are - I can move them, but the leather cuffs - like movies about crazy people!

DOC    Are you crazy?

MARNIE    [almost a wail] No!

DOC    Can you control yourself, Marnie?

MARNIE    [a couple of gasping breaths, then quickly] Yes!

DOC    I can help you.

MARNIE    [wail] No! No! [gasp, then tight but controlled] No.  I'm all right.

DOC    For now.

MARNIE    I feel... peachy.

DOC    [beat] Your hands are restrained.  What else?

MARNIE    There's a strap around my chest, and I can feel one around my legs.

DOC    Do the people talk?

MARNIE    Yes. Some.  They're waiting for someone.

DOC    Someone?  Or the food?

MARNIE    [almost hysterical] I don't know!

DOC    What do they say?  Tell me exactly.

MARNIE    I'll try--

DOC    [still even and calm] Trying isn't going to cut it, missy.

MARNIE    [noisy gulp] 

DOC    I know you can do it.

MARNIE    [sob]  The man with the bag doesn't talk at all.

DOC    Harold?

MARNIE    Yes, Harold.

DOC    And?

MARNIE    The policeman says--

MUSIC     FADES OUT, NO OTHER TRANSITION

 

SCENE 2.

FRED    You shoulda seen her!  Jumped clean over the fence. 

BOY    I can do that.

OLD MAN    Pancakes.

FRED    You can't 'cause - 'cause you're a little butterball.

BOY    I'm magic.

GIRL    [pronouncing] You are a shoe.

SOUND    CLATTER OF SPOON DROPPED ON PLATE

OLD MAN    Pancakes!  Pan! Cakes!

FRED    [panicky, trying to calm him]  Shh!  Shh!  Pancakes, yes.  It's all coming.  Shh.  Clouds.  [dropping to a whisper] Little white fluffy clouds.

OLD MAN    [drawn out whisper]  Pancakesssss. Pancakes.

SOUND    MOMENT OF SILENCE, THEN

 

SCENE 3.

MUSIC    COMES IN WITH A CHORD

DOC    [sigh] You know what happens when you lie to me.

MARNIE    [resigned groan] I'm not lying.

DOC    Pancakes?

MARNIE    [almost a sob] Yes.

DOC    The food - is it there yet?

MARNIE    [sharp gasp, then frightened] It's coming!

DOC    Good.  Let's move forward.  Who brings the food?

MARNIE    [awe, fear] Momma.

DOC    Tell me.

MARNIE    [mounting fear]  Perfect.  Plastic.  Pearls.  Each hair in line, like sweet little soldiers. 

DOC    She is carrying--?

MARNIE    [rising fear] She ...has a cart.  There is a covered dish.

DOC    What are you wearing?

MARNIE    [snapped back] What?

DOC    I ask the questions. 

MARNIE    I'm sorry!

DOC    What are you wearing.  Look down.

MARNIE    Oh.  [beat] T-shirt, jeans - I can feel ... sneakers. 

DOC    And--?

MARNIE    What?

DOC    [warning] And--?

MARNIE    My clothes?  They're... torn up - I think I was in a fight.

DOC    [calm again] Are you injured?

MARNIE    [beat]  My ankle hurts.  I'm scratched up.  My... head...

DOC    [avid] Is there blood?

MARNIE    I -

DOC    [avid] Is there blood?

MARNIE    I - I don't think it's mine.

DOC    Tell me who then.

MARNIE    [on a long sigh] Jerry.

DOC    How?

MARNIE    [shocked] I found him in the barn.  He was flopped over the edge of the ...hayloft - I thought he was dead.  There was blood everywhere.  [starting to sob] Dripping all over me.

DOC    What did you--

MARNIE    [interrupting, still sobbing] Then he - he moaned.

MUSIC    FADES OUT

 

SCENE 4.

JERRY    [very weak] Marnie!

MARNIE    [whispering] Jerry!  Oh, god - Jerry!

SOUND    CREAKING OF LADDER

JERRY    Help... me....

MARNIE    Here, let me move you - [grunt as she drags him]

JERRY    [moans, trying to keep quiet]

MARNIE    Oh, god.

JERRY    It's bad.

MARNIE    I think so.  It's too dark.

JERRY    [gasping, in agony] No.  It was the kid.  You have to get out of here!

MARNIE    But you--

JERRY    I ... I'm not going anywhere ... you gotta go and get help!

MARNIE    Where?

JERRY    Just get the hell out!  The woods--

MARNIE    [smothered gasping sob]

JERRY    [whisper] Shit!

HAROLD    3,4 shut the door...?

SOUND    BARN DOOR CREAKS OPEN

MARNIE    [smothered gasping sob]

SOUND    SILENCE, THEN

 

SCENE 5.

MUSIC CUTS IN

DOC    Is that when they took you in?

MARNIE    No.  Jerry distracted him. 

DOC    Who?

MARNIE    Harold. 

DOC    [satisfied, smug] Harold.

MARNIE    [sobbing] After I jumped out the window, I heard Jerry scream.

DOC    [warning] Did I ask?

MARNIE    No?

DOC    You don't sound very sure.

MARNIE    [quick, panicky] No.  You didn't ask.  I'm sorry.

DOC    I think you need a reminder--

MARNIE    Please!  I remember!  [long beat, then]  I... love you.

DOC    Pancakes.

MARNIE    Pancakes?

DOC    Is the food on the table?

MARNIE    [long shaky sigh of relief]  Yes.

DOC    Where did you sleep?

MARNIE    [blindsided] What?

DOC    Where did you sleep?

MARNIE    I didn't....  Oh, I was... knocked out.  The food‑‑?

DOC    Please try and keep up.  When were you knocked out?

MARNIE    That was later - after... Jerry.

DOC    Who did it?

MARNIE    Harold, I said it was Harold.

DOC    That knocked you out.

MARNIE    Oh, no.  He did Jerry.

DOC    You're not following.  Let's have a break.

MARNIE    [long wail] No!!!

SOUND    ELECTRIC HUM

MARNIE    Umumumumum.  [jittery series of hums, like being electrocuted]

MUSIC    OUT

SOUND    HEARTBEAT

 

SCENE 6.

AMBIANCE    WOODS, CHEERFUL

SOUND    CRUNCHING OF WALKING

JERRY    Marnie?

MARNIE    Yeah?

JERRY    Uh, This camping trip isn't too bad, eh?  I mean, I know you didn't want to--

MARNIE    [sweet] It's not too bad.  Gloria had to beg me to get me to come, but...  It's OK.

JERRY    I mean, what can you say against nature, right?  Fresh air, secluded lake.  Perfect for... skinny dipping?

MARNIE    I brought a suit.

JERRY    Ah... It'll be cool.

MARNIE    Probably freezing - that's a glacier-fed lake.  But, yes, it will be fun.

JERRY    Good.  You don't mind ...  Gloria being kinda busy all the time?

MARNIE    Oh, you noticed?  [laughs] She and Tim haven't stopped fooling around since we got here.

MUSIC SUDDENLY CUTS IN

 

SCENE 7.

DOC    Better now?

MARNIE    [gasping, shuddering, trying to force words out coherently]  Better.  Yes.  Of course.

DOC    Good.  Let's continue.

MARNIE    [snorty sob, then deep breath]  All right.

DOC    Jerry died.

MARNIE    [almost a sob] Yes.

DOC    You loved him.

MARNIE    I think so.

DOC    You don't know?

MARNIE    I - I liked him, but we were just getting to know... each... other?  [afraid she said something wrong, gasping snorty sobs]

DOC    [beat, then slightly disdainful]  How sweet.

MARNIE    [she calms a bit]

DOC    Did you screw him?

MARNIE    No!

DOC    Of course not - pure sweet innocent you.

MARNIE    I-- I don't--

DOC    [casual] Shut up.

MARNIE    [hiccuping gasp]

DOC    Where is Gloria?

MARNIE    Gloria?  [starting to cry]  She's my best friend.

DOC    Was that the question?

MARNIE    She... she... Um [trying to remember] she's dead?

DOC    [sigh, tsks] 

MARNIE    No - no!  She's - was - in the van.

DOC    Very good. [beat]  When did you find her?

MARNIE    Uh - after the barn.  I was trying to get away.  [suddenly remembering] Jerry gave me the keys.

DOC    Good old Jerry.  Go on.

MARNIE    I ran to the van, and Gloria and Tim ... were...  [sobs]

DOC    Please be specific.

MARNIE    [through sobs] They were in the middle of - you know--

DOC    Sex?

MARNIE    Yes.  They were together, and someone had cut off... both... their... heads...!

DOC    [Tsks]

MARNIE    The heads were lined up next to them... like they were watching.

DOC    Charming.

MARNIE    Checking their progress.

DOC    Has the food arrived?

MARNIE    [gasp, stops herself from speaking, then dead calm] Yes.  Momma is in the room.

DOC    What does she do?

MARNIE    [getting agitated] She opens the dish.

DOC    What is in the dish?

MARNIE    [almost incapable of speaking] Sssteam.

DOC    Look down at your lap.

MARNIE    [snort, hiccup] Yes.

DOC    What do you see?

MARNIE    My knees.  Blood.  The carpet.  I'm glad the blood is all tacky, so it won't drip and ruin the carpet.  They would be so angry.

DOC    Are they talking?

MARNIE    Yes.

DOC    Don't look.  Just speak the words.

MARNIE    Momma says--

MUSIC     OUT

 

SCENE 8.

MOMMA    Three cheers for the founder of the feast.

FRED    Hip hip hooray-- [tapers off, when he realizes no one else is with him]  Oh.

LITTLE GIRL    Can I eat the tail?

LITTLE BOY    Pancakes.

OLD MAN    PAN CAKES!

FRED    You just had to set him off! Didn’t you?

HAROLD    [quietly] 1-2 buckle my shoe.

OLD MAN    PanCAKES! Lovely golden brown.

MOMMA    Nothing like a nice dinner together. 

 

SCENE 9.

DOC    Are there empty chairs?

MARNIE    No.  They are all here.

DOC    What about your chair?

MARNIE    I'm in it.

DOC    Are you?  Look back. 

MARNIE    I'm strapped in.

DOC    You must have got free.

MARNIE    Yes.  I-- [gasps and catches herself]

DOC    What?

MARNIE    I'm sorry.  That wasn't the question.

DOC    Good girl.

SOUND    ELECTRICITY

MARNIE    [hums and groans with the jolts]

SOUND    HEARTBEAT

 

SCENE 10.

AMBIANCE    OUTSIDE, PLEASANT WOODS

JERRY    Don't worry about it.  It was probably just a hiker or something.

MARNIE    [mildly worried] But he looked so weird.  His face was like a puzzle.

JERRY    It was just the bushes.

MARNIE    I know.

JERRY    I bet it was the weird guy we saw on the road on the way in.  You know, the one that just stood there and stared as we drove past.  You know.  Now, we all agreed this weekend is for fun.

SOUND    SPLASH

MARNIE    What was that?

JERRY    What?

MARNIE    The splash?

JERRY    Wow, you need some serious relaxation. 

MARNIE    But I heard a splash, and -- Something  wet?

JERRY    Nonsense.  [fading out] It's just last night's rain.

DOC    [whispered voice, very spooky]  Marnie.

MARNIE    Jerry!  I know you must have heard that!

JERRY    Marnie, you're making yourself into a basket case.  There's nobody for miles around!  It's perfectly safe.

MARNIE    But that voice--

DOC    [quick echoey whisper] Marnie. 

MARNIE    It knows my name!

DOC    Wake up!

SOUND    WOODS VANISH

 

SCENE 11.

MARNIE    [Crying]  Why can't you just leave me?

DOC    Now, that wouldn't do either of us any good, would it? 

MARNIE    I want to stay there.  With my friends.

DOC    And die?

MARNIE    [hiccups sobs, then uncertain] Yes.

DOC    I don't think that's quite true.

MARNIE    Yes.

DOC    You fought so hard to get here.

MARNIE    I walked on broken glass.

DOC    Poor toes.  Poor little piggies.

MARNIE    [resigned] What do you want?

DOC    I ask the questions.

MARNIE    [sigh]  Fine.  Go on.

DOC    I also give the orders.

MARNIE    [beat, sniff]  I'm ready.

DOC    Maybe you can learn the rules.  [beat]  Very good.  Where are you now?

MARNIE    Right here.

DOC    Are you?

MARNIE    [unsure] Yes.

DOC    Close your eyes and when you open them, you will see clouds.

MARNIE    Clouds?

DOC    Do you see them?

MARNIE    I'm afraid.

DOC    Open your eyes.

MARNIE    Clouds.

 

SCENE 12.

OLD MAN    k-k-k-k-ake.

LITTLE GIRL    Burn it.

MOMMA    Dig in!

FRED    Again?

LITTLE BOY    There's a face in my soup.

 

SCENE 13.

MARNIE    [screams]

DOC    Don't backslide. 

MARNIE    [screams and sobs]

DOC    [tsks] And we were making such good progress.  [sigh]

SOUND    SINGLE SHORT JOLT OF ELECTRICITY

MARNIE    [gasps to a stop]

DOC     Just right.  Thought I was going to lose you.

MARNIE    I can't look!  Not at that!

DOC    Have to toughen you up.

MARNIE    I can't--

DOC    Look down.

MARNIE    My lap. 

DOC    And in your lap?

MARNIE    Hands.

DOC    Restrained?

MARNIE    Yes.

DOC    Really?

MARNIE    [unsure]  Yes?

DOC    Then how will you escape?

MARNIE    I... can't.

DOC    That is not the right answer.

MARNIE    Please help me!

DOC    Are they very tight?

MARNIE    No.  But if I get loose, they'll see.

DOC    But if you don't get loose while they eat, you will end up in the clouds.

MARNIE    Pancakes.

DOC    Precisely.  Can you pull loose?

MARNIE    I have to brace it against my leg.

DOC    Good girl.  Now you're thinking.  Describe the room.

MARNIE    The table--

DOC    I know about the table.  Where are the windows and doors?

MARNIE    The windows are steamed over.

DOC    Doors?

MARNIE    Momma came from the kitchen.  To my right.  [slowly, carefully looking around]  There's a door beside me.  Over my left shoulder.

DOC    Watch them.  Tell me what they're saying while you get your hands free.

MARNIE    I can't--

DOC    Do you want it again?

MARNIE    No!  [beat, breathing harshly]  I can't look at them.

DOC    Listen.

MUSIC

 

SCENE 14.

LITTLE BOY    I'm not hungry.

LITTLE GIRL    I'll eat yours. I want to grow up big and strong.

OLD GUY    [mmm mmm mmm - chewing noisily]

HAROLD    Five, six.

FRED    Tasty, momma.  As usual.

MOMMA    Oh, you!

MARNIE    Almost.

DOC    Talk to me, not them.

MARNIE    It hurts.

DOC    Life is pain.

MOMMA    Clean your plate, Hun.

FRED    He's a little butterball.

MOMMA    [cold as ice] That's not nice.

FRED    Sorry, Momma.  Sorry!  I love you.

MOMMA    Did I ask you?  Harold - look at this mess. 

HAROLD    Lay them straight?

MOMMA    You can take him and hose him off. 

FRED    Yes, momma. 

MOMMA    And soak that pillowcase.  [cutesy] Can't have my good linens all stained.

FRED    Can I finish eating first?

MOMMA    [cold] I don't know, can you?

FRED    May I?

MOMMA    [sweetness] Of course, dear. 

MUSIC

 

SCENE 15.

MARNIE    My right hand is free.

DOC    Don't struggle too much.  These buckles are tough for a reason.

MARNIE    I think the one with the bag--

DOC    Harold.

MARNIE    --is watching me, but I can’t tell.

DOC    Does he say anything?

MARNIE    No...

DOC    Once you get your wrists free, what will you do?

MARNIE    The strap around my chest--

DOC    And your legs?

MARNIE    I don't think that one is very tight.

DOC    Don't underestimate it.

MARNIE    Why are you helping me?

DOC    [kindly] I ask the questions.

MARNIE    Right.  Sorry.

DOC    No need.  Who am I?

MARNIE    What?  I mean, I don't understand.  I don't know.

DOC    I think you do.

MARNIE    No.  I don't know why I'm here.

DOC    But you're not.

MARNIE    Not what?

DOC    Is your wrist free?

MARNIE    Yes.

DOC    Move your hands slowly to the buckle, then quickly unhook it.

MARNIE    Slowly.

DOC    Cats see movement.

MARNIE    Rods or cones?  I forget.

DOC    Clouds.  Watch the clouds.  Unhook the strap.

MARNIE    Freeze.  They're looking.

DOC    Don't move.  Let them forget.

MUSIC

 

SCENE 16.

FRED    Should we feed HER?

LITTLE GIRL    Throw something at her.

MOMMA    A night without supper will do her good.  Take Harold - there's a good boy.

FRED    Yes, momma.

LITTLE BOY    I want a finger.  Can I take a finger?

MOMMA    If you're good.  I'll save one for you.

LITTLE BOY    Good as goat.

OLD MAN    Gold.  Gold is good.  Golden brown.  Pancakes.... k-k-cake!

MOMMA    Yes, popsy.  All good.

MUSIC

 

SCENE 17.

DOC    And now?

MARNIE    They're looking away.  Maybe they will leave me.

DOC    Not if they see your wrists are loose.  Quick - choose.

MARNIE    Choose what?

DOC    Unbuckle and run or pretend you're still secure and wait.

MARNIE    My ankle hurts.

DOC    Then sit.

MARNIE    I'll put my hands back.

DOC    We will see.

MARNIE    D'you think they will?

DOC    I can't see the future.

MARNIE    Isn’t this a memory?

DOC    Is it?

MARNIE    Where did I go when I got free?

DOC    I ask the questions.

MARNIE    But I don't remember.

DOC    Take it one moment at a time.  Who am I?

MARNIE    A doctor?

DOC    Medical?

MARNIE    No. 

DOC    Ah - now you're thinking.  Let's get through this.

MARNIE    They've left the room.

DOC    You are alone?

MARNIE    The old man is still here.  They'll come back for him.

DOC    What can you do about that?

MARNIE    I'll run.

DOC    He'll yell like a klaxon.

MARNIE    I've got the buckle undone.  Now my legs.

DOC    Why don't you kill him?

MARNIE    What?

DOC    I ask the questions. 

MUSIC    FADES TO "ROOM TONE"

 

SCENE 18.

SOUND    STUMBLING FOOTSTEPS

MARNIE    I'm sorry - I thought I didn’t hear you right.  You said to--

DOC    There are always pancakes in heaven. 

MARNIE    Open the gates and let him [exertion] IN!

OLD GUY    Oof! [dying noises]

SOUND    SQUISH OF KNIFE INTO FLESH, GUSH OF BLOOD

DOC    Is there another knife?

MARNIE    I have it--

SOUND    METAL COVER FALLS TO FLOOR

MARNIE    [wail] No!

DOC    Stop. 

MARNIE    [quick] I'm sorry.  The platter!  Oh, god!

DOC    Steam.  Clouds.

MARNIE    Jerry!

DOC    Don't look.

MARNIE    I can't --

DOC    Jerry is gone.  Do it for him.

MARNIE    [hissing whisper] Yesss.

DOC    Knife?

MARNIE    Cleaver.

DOC    Nice.

MARNIE    [turning a bit gleeful] Cleaver.  Momma.  Kitchen.

DOC    Sounds like a plan.

MARNIE    Thank you.

DOC    I love you.

MARNIE    [serious]  That means a lot.

 

SCENE 19.

SOUND    KITCHEN DOOR SWINGS OPEN

DOC    Keep down.

MOMMA    Hmm?  What?

SOUND    HIGH HEEL FOOTSTEPS

MOMMA    Who's playing games?

MARNIE    [whispered] Come just a little closer.

SOUND    A COUPLE MORE FOOTSTEPS

MOMMA    Hello?

DOC    Now!

MARNIE    Ungh!

SOUND    KNIFE CUTS NYLONS, LEG. 

MOMMA    [screams]

SOUND    BODY COLLAPSES, SHOE SCRABBLES ON TILE FLOOR, BLOOD SPURTS

DOC    Neatly done.  Hamstring.  Quick or slow?

MARNIE    No time.  Ungh!

SOUND    KNIFE GOES IN AGAIN

MOMMA    [gurgling, choking]

SOUND    HANDS SKITTER ACROSS TILES, THEN FLOP AND DROP

DOC    [long sigh]  Such a pretty color.

MARNIE    Looks good on her.

DOC    Four to go.

MARNIE    Jerry said it was the kid who... [almost breaks] ...got ...him.

DOC    You're finally taking this all seriously.

SOUND    THUMP OVERHEAD

MARNIE    How many stairs would the house have?

SOUND    DOOR OPENS A CRACK

DOC    [kindly] I ask the questions.  You'll have to count them.

MARNIE    I should see if there's something longer. 

DOC    Tablecloths can cloud the issue.

MARNIE    You and your clouds.

SOUND    FEET COMING DOWN THE STAIRS

DOC    six, five, four--

MARNIE    Three, two one ---

SOUND    DOOR STARTS TO OPEN, THEN IS SLAMMED SHUT, BODY FALLS

FRED    [yell, groan]

DOC    Full point.

SOUND    DOOR SLAMS OPEN AGAIN

FRED    Momma?  What are you doing--?

MARNIE    I ask the questions.

DOC    I love you.

FRED    I think you broke my-- urk!

SOUND    KNIFE PLUNGES INTO THROAT

FRED    [gurgling as he dies]

DOC    It's quite warm, isn’t it?

MARNIE    Yes.

DOC    Hot.

MARNIE    Boiling.

DOC    [concerned] Steam?

MARNIE    [dismissive] Clouds.

DOC    [satisfied] Yesss.  Time to go hunting.

MARNIE    Rods or cones?

DOC    Sticks and stones.

MARNIE    [chuckles]

 

SCENE 20.

SOUND    CAREFUL FOOTSTEPS UP THE STAIRS

SOUND    CREAK, FEET STOP

DOC    Steady. Where are you now?

MARNIE    Almost to the top.

DOC    What do you see?

MARNIE    Hallway.  Doors. 

DOC    And behind you?

MARNIE    Just the stairs. 

DOC    [stern]  Did you look, or just guess?

MARNIE    [panicky] Sorry!  I'll - I'll look.  It's stairs.  The door at the bottom is shut.

DOC    Did you shut it?

MARNIE    [almost a wail] I don't remember!

DOC    Calm down.  One, two buckle my shoe--

HAROLD    [off, calling] Three four, shut the door--

MARNIE    [quiet, calming herself]  Five six.  Pick.  Up.  Sticks.

DOC    Harold is looking too.

MARNIE    [calm again] Yes.

DOC    Don't forget the children.

MARNIE    [breaks a little] Jerry

DOC    Yah, dear Jerry.

HAROLD    [coming closer] Seven? eight?  Lay them straight?

MARNIE    [very quietly] Marco!

DOC    [chuckles nastily, then]  Here in the hall, or one of the rooms?

MARNIE    Here.  Here I have someplace to go--

SOUND    DOOR WRENCHED OPEN AT BOTTOM OF STAIRS

HAROLD    Nine, ten - a big fat hen!

DOC    What will you do now? 

SOUND    FOOTSTEPS COMING UP STAIRS

SOUND    GRIND OF FURNITURE BEING MOVED

MARNIE    [exerting herself] No one ever fights them.  That's why.

DOC    What was the question?

HAROLD    Eleven, Twelve - dig and delve.

MARNIE    [exerting] Why do they always win?

DOC    Excellent.

MARNIE    I love you.

DOC    Of course.

SOUND    GRIND OF FURNITURE ENDS, HEAVY SOMETHING GOES THUMPING DOEN THE STAIRS

MARNIE    Hah!

HAROLD    [scream of outrgae]

DOC    Don't get too full of yourself--

SOUND    STAB

MARNIE    [gasp of pain]

LITTLE GIRL    [flat] You broke the chiffonier.

DOC    It's low.  You'll live.  For a while.  Kill her.

MARNIE    She's just a kid!

SOUND    SHUFFLING FOOTSTEPS BACKING UP, SMALL CHILD FOOTSTEPS STALKING, INTERMITTENT DRIPPING

DOC    You do not ask the questions!

MARNIE    [meek and in pain] No.  I'm sorry!

LITTLE GIRL    We could have played.  [tsks]

SOUND    KNIVES SHARPENING

MARNIE    You hurt me!

LITTLE GIRL    If I didn't, Harold would just have to.

MARNIE    I- I can't!

DOC    No time for breaks now.  Give or take.  [beat, solemn] I love you.

MARNIE    I'm sorry.

SOUND    MARNIE DASHES FORWARD

MARNIE    Ung!

SOUND    PICKS UP GIRL AND TOSSES HER DOWN THE STAIRS

LITTLE GIRL    [noises of indignation as she falls]

SOUND    THUMPS AND BUMPS

DOC    [whispered] No breaks.

MARNIE    I'm... hurt.

SOUND    STICKY NOISE

DOC    You should go home.

SOUND    [OFF] DOOR SLAMS OPEN

MARNIE    Harold!

DOC    In here!

MARNIE    Aah!

HAROLD    [incoherent high pitched scream]

SOUND    BODY SLAMS AGAINST DOOR, DOOR SLAMS OPEN, BODY TUMBLES INTO ROOM.  MARNIE SCOOTCHES AWAY FROM DOOR.

 

SCENE 21.

SOUND    MARNIE SCRAMBLES UP TO HER FEET

DOC    Out the window.

MARNIE    [panting heavily]

SOUND    FOOTSTEPS DRAG ACROSS THE ROOM, DRIPPING. 

SOUND    POUNDING ON THE WINDOW

MARNIE    It won't open.

DOC    It is glass.

MARNIE    [long gasping breath, then] ungh!

SOUND    WINDOW SHATTERS

DOC    Out!

MARNIE    But I can't see--

DOC    You can see what's in here.

MARNIE    [scream as she jumps]

SOUND    ELECTRIC NOISES

 

SCENE 22.

DOC    Where are you now?

AMBIANCE    NIGHTTIME, OUTSIDE

MARNIE    I'm on the ground.  What should I do?

DOC    [rueful] You don't ask the questions.

MARNIE    Zap me again. 

DOC    It's much too late for that.  Why aren't you running?

MARNIE    I think I'm broken.

DOC    Will that stop you?

MARNIE    I don't care any more.

DOC    Are you absolutely sure?

SOUND    DOOR BANGS OPEN, OFF

MARNIE    [crying, crawling]

DOC    Is it bad?

MARNIE    Yes.

DOC    I am sorry.

MARNIE    I know.

HAROLD    [howling]

DOC    I love you.

LITTLE BOY    [off] There she goes!

HAROLD    [howling]

SOUND    CHAINSAW REVS

DOC    Where are you now?

MARNIE    In deep shit.

DOC    Where?

MARNIE    Out back.

SOUND    HEAVY FEET RUN ACROSS GRAVEL, COMING ON

DOC    Where are you going?

SOUND    BODY DROPS

MARNIE    [muffled, crying] Nowhere.

DOC    Nowhere?

MARNIE    [panting, crying a little] I can't. My leg.

SOUND    ROAR OF CHAINSAW GETS CLOSER

DOC    What do you want?

MARNIE    How can you ask that?

DOC    It's my job.

MARNIE    [beat]  Jerry--

DOC    But Jerry's--

MARNIE    [sob] Yes!

DOC    Very well.  Let's take that break.

SOUND     ELECTRIC HUM

MARNIE    Umumum

SOUND    HEARTBEAT

 

SCENE 23.

AMB    NICEY WOODS

SOUND    FOOTSTEPS

JERRY    [teasing] What took you so long?

MARNIE    [bright] Sorry.  Got a little caught up.

JERRY    Is there anything wrong?

MARNIE    No, Not anymore.

JERRY    Wanna go down to the lake?

MARNIE    More than anything.

SOUND    FOOTSTEPS IN LEAVES

SOUND    ECHOEY, DISTANT - CHAINSAW, MARNIE'S SCREAMS

CLOSER

OLIVIA    Now that you know how to find us, you'll have to come back.  Maybe next week?  Don't be a stranger - we have enough of those already...

 

***********************************************************

The "Truth":

This story is going on inside the disturbed mind of a victim of a "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" type event.  Her boyfriend and other friends were killed by this creepy family of cannibals, and she was captured and chained to a chair.

At first it sounds like she is being psychoanalyzed after the fact, but eventually it becomes clear that this is not "after" anything, she is still stuck in the events she is describing.

The "Doctor" voice is, in fact, inside her head, and seems to represent her logic or her survival instinct - keeping her head clear and focused while the rest of her is busy panicking.  For example, the voice guides her to look around, to avoid things that are disturbing, and to focus on getting herself free.

When all else fails, Doc "shocks" Marnie into a faint, where she experiences a pleasant flashback/dream to calm her down before returning to reality.

To add to the dreamlike atmosphere of the story, and the connectedness of the two, the voices of Marnie and Doc are both played by me, and rotate - moving across the soundscape to trade places - very slowly throughout the episode.

At the end, when there is no remaining hope, Marnie begs Doc for the shock - so she can be unconscious and "in a better place" when they ultimately kill her - and Doc kindly allows it.