The Son, The Son, and The Son: Scene 2

Scene 1 can be found here.

SCENE 2

Street Lights down, Apartment Lights up. “Don’t You Know Who I Think I Am,” by Fall Out Boy, plays. PEARL sleeps, ORSON mindlessly toys with a Chinese finger trap. CONWAY bursts out of the bathroom door, wielding a spray bottle and a book. He weaves through the furniture in the room, checking behind each corner like a spy. When he arrives at the window, CONWAY mutters some Spanish prayers under his breath as he sprays the inside of the book. He wipes it with his beard. Then he throws it out the window. Seconds later, everyone hears honking horns and a car crash from outside. The music stops right before the noises. ORSON and PEARL awake.

ORSON

Pipe it down!

CONWAY

I did it! I’ve saved Spain!

PEARL

Explain yourself.

CONWAY

I just saved the world! Everybody wanted me to. Praise me! I’m Jesus, and I’ve saved Spain!

VOICE FROM OUTSIDE

I CAN’T FEEL MY LEGS! AAAAAAAHHHHHHH!

 

ORSON

I liked you better as a suck-up. And stop calling yourself Jesus!

PEARL

These ‘world-saving quests’ of yours are indubitably a psychological attempt to gain favor beyond the cosmic stream.

CONWAY

I’m sorry you think that. But all of this takes very hard work. Miracles need practice.

PEARL

Yesterday, you claimed that the theft of your omnipowerful abilities prevented you from performing miracles, such as your return to Spain. Do not assume your charade as a false human will save you. I’m watching you. You will not outlast me.

CONWAY

But I saved the world. Aren’t you happy?

SABINA enters with a bag of fast food.

ORSON

Conway did it!

SABINA

Did what?

CONWAY

Now wait, is it ok if I explain myself first? I don’t want to be misrepresented.

SABINA

Of course.

CONWAY steps in front of the closing curtains.

CONWAY

An agent of God has responsibilities. I must act for a greater glory, doing things nobody else would do for Queen and Country.

“James Bond Theme” starts playing.

CONWAY

My name is Conway, but you can call me Bond… Jesus Bond.

JULIE BAIT enters, held up by HENCHMAN.

HENCHMAN

All right, Miss Julie Bait… hand over that top-secret book you stole! The one with all the secrets about Spain!

JULIE BAIT

Oh no! Won’t someone come save me!

CONWAY

I’d do as the lady says.

HENCHMAN

Jesus Bond? But we’re on an island. How did you get here, walking?

CONWAY

I guess it’s not always sink or swim.

CONWAY knocks out henchman.

JULIE BAIT

My hero! But you must stop rogue agent Judas. If he gets his hands on the book, all is lost!

CONWAY crosses the stage. JUDAS meets him there.

JUDAS

A pleasure, Mr. Bond. I miss our suppers together, we had such fun at the last one.

CONWAY

I’m shook up about it, but not stirred.

JUDAS

Now!

HENCHMAN grabs CONWAY. JUDAS brings in a cross, begins nailing CONWAY to it.

JUDAS

Do you like my elaborate death trap? You’ll be powerless from stopping me now. Once I claim the book, I will rule the world under your stolen power!

CONWAY

Crucifixion? This never happened to the other fellow!

JUDAS

You know, I’ve been meaning to ask, why does your face change every time we meet? Is it different actors or something?

CONWAY

Different Jesuses. You’ve met Orthodox and Protestant Jesus. I’m the Catholic one. But why are we chitchatting? Do you expect me to talk?

JUDAS

No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to die!

CONWAY

Judas, you know not what you do!

CONWAY dies. JUDAS laughs.

JUDAS

Come, my henchman. We have a white cat to stroke.

HENCHMAN lays down CONWAY, exits with JUDAS. After they leave, CONWAY stands up.

CONWAY

They never expect a resurrection device disguised as a shoe. Thanks, Q.

JULIE BAIT enters with book.

JULIE BAIT

Bond! Bond, I love you! But Judas attached a bomb to this book! If it blows, then so does Spain!

CONWAY

Time to go out with a bang, then!

The curtains pull back. CONWAY runs to the window.

PEARL

Not again!

CONWAY throws the book out the window. “James Bond Theme” stops playing. After a silence, sound of crashing cars, yelling, an ambulance, and a fire.

SABINA

If anyone asks, it wasn’t us. Let’s calm down and have lunch. Chicken nuggets for Orson, those fruit bar things for Pearl… Conway, they didn’t have broccoli, I’m sorry.

CONWAY

I will eat what you want me to eat, madam.

SABINA

I suppose you can share my fries. May we eat them together?

CONWAY

I prefer to eat alone. We prefer to.

SABINA

May-

CONWAY

I’m sorry, that’s sinful of me. Of course I’ll join you. And thank you again for this roof over our head and for the daily bread. I can’t thank you enough.

SABINA

So I’ve seen. I enjoyed our conversation last night. Did you?

CONWAY

Not particularly, no. Pearl doesn’t know nearly enough about Spain as he thinks. And Orson has terrible manners.

Both of them notice PEARL, who’s watching both of them while eating.

PEARL

She will render us limp with her lies and negative energies. But God will see this, and he will throw down his lightning through the cosmic stream and turn you into a midget.

CONWAY

Can you please make him leave?

SABINA

Pearl, I would like to talk with Conway alone. Perhaps Orson would like the company.

ORSON

Go piss out your cosmic stream!

CONWAY

I’m sorry about that.

SABINA

You don’t have to-

CONWAY

Don’t worry. I’m going to help you out. Pearl and Orson think the false Jesuses are machines or midgets or something, but we know the truth. The truth is that they’re mental patients.

SABINA

That’s quite observant of you.

CONWAY

Thank you. So I’m on your side.

SABINA

I actually wanted to talk about mental hospitals, Conway. Or maybe not, if you don’t want. You love Spain. Why is that?

CONWAY

Where to start! Her wavy hillsides, her lined churches, the tapas, literature, history…

SABINA

Could you tell me about the history?

CONWAY

Are you sure? People think I talk too much about it.

SABINA

I wouldn’t object to an abridged version.

CONWAY

I’ll try. You see, after the fall of Rome, many invaders came to Spain. These include the Moors and Visigoths, whose cultures formed the basis of Spanish culture today. But it wasn’t complete until the land’s former Catholic monarchs retook the land. That led to The Golden Age! So many books are written about that. But the Spaniards got too greedy for colonies, and invested too much power in lands they couldn’t control. Franco’s fascist reign brought in Spain’s Darkest Hour in the thirties and forties. But we reformed into a democratic parliamentary constitutional monarchy once I kicked Franco out.

SABINA

You deposed Franco?

CONWAY

Oh yes. He was not a nice man. I sent Franco to the devil, restored the regions of Spain to glory, and worked as Chief Producer of Great Literature.

SABINA

You are Jesus and a government employee?

CONWAY

I’ve got to earn a living too, you know.

SABINA

Well, I see things differently. I heard that Franco died in bed.

CONWAY

If you say so. Say, did you know that Lazarillo de Tormes invented the picaresque novel? It often involves a rascally character exposing various injustices as he explores a-

SABINA

Someone told me something depressing a few days ago. Could you help me understand it?

CONWAY

Anything.

SABINA

Someone told me Rokeach State Hospital knew you. I wanted to learn more.

CONWAY

You didn’t talk to them! You wouldn’t!

SABINA

I wanted to see what I could learn.

CONWAY

But they’re bullies! Germs! They never let you leave, it’s always back to the beginning with them! Back to your sins! They can’t accept me!

SABINA

They said you’re from Missouri?

CONWAY

It’s not true, doggonit! Not anymore. Oh, I can’t stand it.

SABINA

It’s ok. No one here will force you to do anything. I’d like to talk about this- their lie, if that’s ok.

CONWAY

Could I leave when I need to?

SABINA

Of course. Now let’s assume- assume- that these men and women are right, that you cannot represent Spain. Why is this so important to you?

CONWAY

Because Missouri doesn’t fit me. A worse person, someone who repeats the evils of his father, now he might be born in the backwater. But not the Second Coming.

SABINA

Jesus was born in-

CONWAY

But that’s not fair, is it? No one chooses their parents, or their calling. And if you’re born on the wrong ground, people will put your nose in it.

SABINA

Did you feel unappreciated in your early life?

CONWAY

Maybe. I used to think that it was my pride that made me hit someone close to me. But then, days later, when I was on the run, I felt a searing. Like a branding of my cells. It’s still happening. I though I was real sick back then. But no, sickness is much older than I’ll ever be. I’m not the sickness. I know it. This branding was too relevant to be sickness. It was purification. As they struggled over me in the emergency room, arguing about where it all went wrong, I listened to this searing feeling. And I made my first choice in this world. The only choice anyone has.

SABINA

You chose to be Jesus.

CONWAY

And you chose to be Sabina.

SABINA

Not really.

CONWAY

What does that mean?

SABINA

I mean- never mind. You know, I almost find it impossible to believe myself, but there are some people out there who hate Jesus. How would you talk to a Satanist at a nice dinner party? There are negative consequences to whichever persona you choose to be. If I wanted to be loved, I couldn’t just be Sabina. I’d have to play different people.

CONWAY

Maybe it’s the Jesus-haters that took my powers. People really wouldn’t like me?

SABINA

You made your choice, I guess.

CONWAY

I need to go now.

SABINA

Did I upset you?

CONWAY

No, just reminded me. God has responsibilities. And I have people to save. Spain shall rise again!

CONWAY runs out, singing the American National Anthem, replacing key words with ‘Spain.’

SABINA

Yep, definitely from Missouri.

Apartment Lights down. Street Lights up. Sabina arrives on the scene taking notes.

SABINA

This really was an exhilarating day. Each of the Jesuses spy on each other now, hoping that one of them will mess up and reveal his mortality. And Conway presents such a fascinating look into mentally challenged minds. In a sense, he’s just another schizophrenic creating beliefs without social support, due to trauma in this case. But he frames it in the lens of choice while his illness condemns him to one identity for life. And how much is choice worth when you can’t choose when to change it?

I may have to dive deeper into research when exploring Orson. Unlike with Conway, it’s doubtful that Rokeach Hospital will confirm an abusive past or an incarceration. Even alongside men with isolationist tendencies, Orson is incredibly reserved. His interactions at dinner consist of him shouting “I’m Jesus!” or “More cheeseburgers!” Again, zoning out for hours is common among schizophrenics, but Orson does almost nothing else.

KIM enters.

KIM

So what did we learn today?

SABINA

Kim? Kim, oh my god, didn’t you forget the Jesuses?

KIM

What?

SABINA

The Jesuses! Kim, they can’t be alone! Remember yesterday when Pearl kept claiming that the Virgin Mary and Mary Magdalene were the same woman? And when Orson claimed he’d still hit that? We can’t let this escalate too far!

KIM

They wouldn’t have if you didn’t keep them on topic. Also, you asked me to come here.

SABINA

I did?

KIM

We had a dinner reservation.

SABINA

I didn’t come to dinner because, because I discovered something.

KIM

Really?

SABINA

I was here at the town square before dinner. I was writing about the Jesuses when something happened.

KIM

You’re lying. You’re just trying to cover yourself with a “social experiment.”

SABINA

I’m going to be direct because I love you.

KIM

And now you’re mocking me.

SABINA

That fountain over there plugged up and there was this phlegm-like sound inside it. And I reached into it, over there…

KIM

And then I’ll reach into it, and you’ll splash me.

SABINA

It was a Chinese finger trap! Here! It looks just like Orson’s! It’s a miracle!

KIM

It’s not working.

SABINA

Kim, one of those Jesuses may be the real one! We need to find Him before-

KIM

There was no date!

 

Or maybe there was. It’s hard not knowing, isn’t it?

SABINA

I would never do that. I can make this up to you.

KIM

What don’t you make up?

SABINA

You’re right. I shouldn’t have to keep proving myself.

KIM

Unless it’s to three psychopaths.

SABINA

Ok, you know as well as I do that they’re paranoid schizophrenics. But this is just what we do. We want to be good people. I happen to learn through imitating the bad ones.

KIM

Just like you imitated me?

SABINA

You-

KIM

I don’t know, just- the best thing for me is to crash at a friend’s right now. You don’t live in a vacuum, Sabina. I’m sorry.

KIM exits.

SABINA

Fine. I have work to do.

“I Don’t Wanna Walk Around With You,” by The Ramones, plays. Street Lights down, Apartment Lights up. ORSON zones out, PEARL and CONWAY converse. They seem to slowly be opening up to each other. SABINA enters and begins chatting with and taking notes on CONWAY. PEARL and ORSON attempt to sneak out. Before they leave, SABINA pulls aside ORSON and drags him into the conversation. PEARL waits, then tries to sneak out. He’s caught by SABINA and made to join the conversation. All three Jesuses are bored. KIM enters and begins to place various accessories in her suitcase. SABINA tries to talk with her. ORSON, once the coast is clear, exits. PEARL exits. CONWAY sits there until ORSON returns and drags him offstage. KIM exits. SABINA notices that everyone has left her apartment. Apartment Lights Down.

Continued in Scene 3.

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2 thoughts on “The Son, The Son, and The Son: Scene 2

  1. Pingback: The Son, The Son, and The Son: Scene 1 | Word Salad Spinner

  2. Pingback: The Son, The Son, and The Son: Scene 3 (Part 1) | Word Salad Spinner

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