PLAYHOUSE OF THE DAMNED
by Richard Nathan
The spotlight is up on our host, GUS THE GHOUL, while a chair is placed on the stage for the next story. This one chair is all that is necessary. Gus speaks to the audience:
GUS THE GHOUL
Sometimes members of our audience seem
to have trouble staying a wake. When that
happens, I give them one. A wake. If
you're not ready for your own wake, pay
attention to this next story. This little
nightmare is called "Dream Girl."
Gus exits. Lights come up on a MAN seated in a chair. A WOMAN enters and stands behind him.
It's not good to be so tense.
I'm trying to help you.
No. You're not.
What are you so worried about?
If I go to sleep....
If I go to sleep, you'll....
You are asleep.
I will not go to sleep. I will not sleep. I
Have I ever come to you when you were
I don't think so. I don't remember.
Am I here now?
Then you must be asleep.
Why are you so afraid of me?
Because you stick your fingers in my brain!
You stick your fingers in my brain! You damage
me! Every day when I wake up, after you've been
here, my thoughts are less clear. My memory is
That's just part of the aging process.
It's part of the process of you sticking your fingers
in my brain!
You feel that way because you're so tense. Even
when you sleep, you're tense! No one can think
straight when they're as tense as you are.
I wouldn't be so tense if I didn't have to worry
about you sticking your fingers in my brain.
You'd feel so much better if you'd relax, enjoy a
night of deep sleep, and wake up refreshed. When
was the last time you woke up refreshed?
I don't remember. I don't think I've ever woken
Of course you have. When you were young.
Refreshed and ready to take on the world!
Wouldn't you like to feel you can take on
Are you insane? Why would I want to take
on the world? Do you have any idea how
outnumbered I'd be?
No. How outnumbered would you be?
I don't remember. I think the world's
population is something like six and a
half billion. I'd be outnumbered six and
a half billion to one.
If you'd get a good night's sleep, you'd
feel like you could do it.
If I got a good night's sleep, you'd stick
your fingers in my brain and I wouldn't know
what I was doing!
Have you ever heard people tell you how
important it is to get a good night's sleep?
Have you ever heard anyone tell you that
it is important not to let a woman in your
dreams stick her fingers in your brain?
No. No, not that I remember.
The woman starts massaging the man's shoulders and his neck. He goes slack as she talks to him.
Your subconscious has conjured me to
tell you how much you need to rest. How
much you need to let yourself sink all the
way, all the way down into the dark satin
comfort of sleep. Let go. Surround yourself
in darkness. Let it take you, envelop you,
fold you up in its peace. Surrender. Let go
of your tension. Let go. Let go. Let go. Let
She starts massaging the back of us head. Unseen by the audience, she takes a packet of ketchup from under the collar of the shirt of the actor playing the man, opens the packet, and spreads the ketchup on her fingers. Then she takes her ketchup-covered fingers from the back of his head, and licks off the ketchup, as though she was licking off the blood from inside his brain.
man and the woman exit. GUS THE GHOUL enters.
A spotlight picks up Gus.
GUS If you tries to
Dream Girl? Or Scream Girl?
steal you heart, don't tell her to stop it,
because she will... stop it... your heart!
Stop your heart! What's the matter with you
people? Has someone stuck their fingers in
If you tries to
Click here to go to another PLAYHOUSE OF THE DAMNED story
© 2006 by Richard Nathan. All rights reserved
The author grants all internet uses to print these scripts for their own, personal, non-commercial use. No other use may be made without the author's permission. Without limiting the foregoing, the plays may not be staged without the author's express permission.
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