What follows is a selection of monologues that I hope might relieve the boredom for all you stuck at home actors both male and female. 

Please, (if you want of course) have a go at them in any way you want. Change a word here and there (just a word). Learn them, put them online (you have my permission – just give me a credit). Use them. If you like any of them please, make them come to life for me. Thank you X

If you have any questions please email me HERE

OK…

This is a short play/monologue called ‘Trevor’s disease’ about the possible effects of social isolation.

 

TREVOR’S DISEASE.

by Ian Harris.

A (middle-aged?) man (Trevor) sits at a table alone in room in his house.

He’s obviously tired. Bags circle his eyes and his hair is dishevelled.

On the table he sits behind is a basic breakfast.

A plate of two slices of toast. A jar of marmalade and a cup of tea and teapot. Beside the teapot a handful of unidentified white pills.

 

TREVOR:     (Takes a deep breath) It scratches at the door. (Pause) It scratches at the door because it wants to come in. Of course,…I won’t let it. I’m not stupid no matter that some might disagree.

  (Pause).

There’s a lot of people that do think I’m stupid, but I just let them get on with it. They can think what they like. It doesn’t bother me. I’m used to it. When mum was alive, she told me not to take any notice of them, so I don’t.

(Pause)

I always remember what mum said because she was always right. When I was a school she said I should hold my head up high and be proud because I was as good as them. I did that. I held my head up high.

But to tell the truth it didn’t work. I always still felt like me and besides it gave me a stiff neck. I didn’t tell mum that I had stopped doing it. It would have upset her. Anyway….

It was very busy last night, so busy scratching away that it kept me awake. But I didn’t let it worry me too much

I did that trick that mum taught me to do if I couldn’t sleep. She said if you can’t sleep…sing to yourself.

So, that’s what I did. I sang to myself. No particular song I just made one up.

It was a love song.

A love song about a beautiful woman who I have never met. She’s in my imagination. She’s in my head. She has long brow-no-black hair and good teeth. Good teeth are very important in a beautiful woman.

Anyway…as much as I enjoyed it, it  didn’t help me sleep. I just spent the whole time thinking about this beautiful woman. I must give her a name soon. She’s a frequent visitor and it does seem such bad manners to not give her a name.

Anyway, before I knew it. It was the morning.

(Pause).

This is what they call lockdown.

The man on the TV said not to go out. Not that I do anyway but it is, said the man on the TV, very important that we don’t go out. It is dangerous he said. Apparently, there’s something out there that’s making people hurt. Makes them sick. And that’s quite scary don’t you think. And what’s more, you can’t see it. It sneaks up on you and before you know it….well…it can hurt you quite badly.

I think I’m alright here. The door’s locked, and the windows are shut. Whatever it is it can’t get in here. No matter how hard it tries it can’t get in because I am doing everything right. Just like the man on TV said. I’m quite safe here.

I shall need to eat soon though.

I am quite hungry.

I’ve had cornflakes for the last two days and they don’t fill you up like they used to do when you was a kid. And tea. I’ve got tea. But I will have to eat soon. I don’t really know what to do f I can’t go out (shrugs shoulders)…

I’ve thought about banging on the wall to the lady next door and asking her to get me something when she next goes shopping but I don’t want to worry her and anyway I’m not sure if she’s in.

I usually hear her moving around or playing the radio, but it’s been very quiet for the past few days. The last thing I heard was her coughing one night but since then…nothing.

I’m tempted to open the window and shout down to the street, but I’d hate to frighten someone you know what I mean? I mean I wouldn’t like a complete stranger shouting down to me, would you? Scare me to death.

(Pause)

I did wonder if maybe my brother would come round?

He comes to see me about once a month.. Thing is, I can’t remember the last time he came…so he may be-(suddenly) sshh – you hear it…can you? Can you hear it? The scratching…listen. By the door. Listen.

SILENCE…

It’s gone. You were too late. Anyway, it doesn’t matter does it. it can scratch away for as long as it like it’s not coming in.

PAUSE

You know what else is weird? No traffic.

Usually I can see the tops of the buses as they pass my window. I can see all the miserables going to work. But I haven’t seen the top of a bus for two maybe three days. And the last one I saw the top deck was empty. Now that is unusual. So, things must be bad out there.

This morning (smiles) it was funny. I thought I heard a new noise something different. It gave me quite a turn. You know what it was…eh?

It was my stomach rumbling. It made me jump. I thought Oh Christ what now…it was my stomach rumbling eh. (Laughs) What about that? My stomach…laughs softly and smiles…I must eat soon.

(furtively looking around) I wish mum was here.

end


At War…

by

Ian Harris

A table. On the table a vase of flowers being tended by MOTHER ONE. 

 

MOTHER ONE:        They say it might rain today. I like the rain. A drop of rain doesn’t hurt. Freshens everything up don’t you think? And I like walking in the rain…mind you…I only work over the road so any walking I might do that gets me wet only lasts for a minute or two. (Pause)

It’s called Montgomery’s. The factory I work at. Montgomery’s. We make arms. Oh. (Laughs) Not arms as in guns, no. Arms. As in arms. (Waves her arm about).

(Pause).

It’s not too bad a job I suppose. Could be a lot worse. You know how it is. Since the war began we’re all expected to do our bit so I made a choice, closed down my little flower shop, it wasn’t making much money anyway, and came to Montgomery’s…along with everyone else from around here.It’s not what I’m used to but you have to show willing don’t you? You have to make an effort. The times require it of you don’t they…and…well… you’ve got to keep busy…haven’t you? Work takes your mind off…things…doesn’t it?

Anyway…at Montgomery’s like I said, we make plastic arms. Prosthetics. That’s the proper word. Pros-thetics. False limbs.

We’re the East side factory and we make the arms. Over there… (points) a couple of miles away is the West side…(thinks…then changes her mind). West…hang on…(points in the opposite direction) God…directions were never my strong point. Oh I don’t know… anyway…where ever the West side is…that’s where they make the legs. It’s for the boys who come home you know, lacking.

(Pause)

Without.

(Pause)

I wanted to contribute to the war effort and you feel like you’re doing something useful making prosthetics don’t you. Well I mean  it’s so much better than making the machines that take the arms and legs off in the first place isn’t it?

(Pause)

I  couldn’t make guns. Not in a million years.  My conscience wouldn’t allow it. I’d never sleep at night if I made guns and bullets and bombs like some of the girls do in the other factories around here. Not that I sleep anyway but you get my gist. At least with this job you feel like you’re benefiting someone. That you’re doing some good. I mean no-one is going to kill with a plastic arm are they?

(Pause)

Actually…to tell the truth…they don’t look like plastic. They’re very good. You’d never know. The fingers move and everything. Feels like skin to the touch too. Clever…very clever…but if I were honest…a little creepy too. To see them all piled up at the end of the working day waiting for their new owners…it’s very odd. Sends a bit of a shiver down your spine. (Shivers) Still…we won’t let that stop us will we?

(Pause)

I’ve got a son away you know. Not that, that’s unusual. Lots of the women around here have close family away. We’ve all got someone away fighting this.. (looks around again to make sure on-one is listening and mouths quietly)…bloody war.

(Pause)

My son…my son is a good boy. I know I’m his mother but I really mean it when I say there isn’t a bad bone in his body. He’s a gentle soul. A kind lad who always put others before himself.

(Pause)

To be honest…I could never see him as a soldier. He wouldn’t…he couldn’t hurt a fly. He’s much too soft for all that military nonsense. The day he received his papers and he told me that it was only right that he should go…well…we all cried. The tears flowed like a waterfall. I nearly called a plumber in (laughs nervously)

(Pause).

It broke my heart it really did. That boy…that boy is as soft as the down pillow that I sleep on. And I like him like that. I want to keep him that way. Every day I hope and I pray that the army and this damn war hasn’t changed him too much…but I’m not stupid. I know what war can do to a boy-a man…(smiles).  I must stop calling him a boy.

(Pause)

Anyway…I hope…I really hope I recognise him when he comes home. I hope…I hope he’s still…mine. Silly thing to say I know but war does something to people doesn’t it.     Besides killing them I mean.

(Pause).

I’ve seen it in the ones who’ve come home and well…let’s just say…let’s just say that something’s missing. And I don’t mean arms and legs… although that too…obviously. What I’m talking about is something else… something from behind the eyes. A light. A light that’s gone out. (Thinks) I wonder. Maybe…maybe it’s the soul.

(Pause)

I haven’t heard you know. Not a thing. Not a word. Nothing for months. And I’m worried. They’ve taken our sons away from us and we don’t know when they’re coming back. All we do know for definite is that…(pause) some won’t.

(Pause)

The women at Montgomery’s – we all share the same pain. The same agony. But you know what we say. (Taps her head).

In here ….Your son please God not mine.

Terrible isn’t it? It’s as though…it’s as though there’s a devil within us or something.

(Strong) Anyway…forget that…the knock on the door that this mother hears will be her son coming home mark my words.

(Pause).

I had all the photographs out last night. To remind  me. To remind me that once I had a son and not a soldier. To remind me that once not that long ago I was the one who guided and led him. That I was the one who told him what to do and not the army.

(Pause…smiles & weeps)

You’re not leaving that table until everyone of those sprouts is gone.

Have you seen the state of your room?

What time do you call this?

I hope you’ve got your key? I’m not opening that door again after midnight.

Don’t you dare talk to me like that.

You’re not too big to get a clout behind the ear young man.

If you think you’re coming into my house in that condition you’re mistaken young man…and don’t expect me to clean it up.

Who on earth is that young woman doing in your room?

This is a respectable household… (pause…a smile…a tear)

Dada…go on…say it now…Dada. Where’s dada? Where’s dada? (Wipes away a tear).

(Pause).

I’ve lost some more weight. My friends tell me I ought to go to the doctor. I tell them…I tell them that I eat like a horse and it’s the worry. (Smiles) They believe me.

(Pause)

When this is over then the doctors can prod and poke me as much as they like. But not now. I haven’t got time. I’ve got to be here when he comes home. I don’t want him to come home to an empty house do I?

There’s going to be a big sign saying Welcome Home Son. And there’s going to be fireworks.  Lots of fire-oh…wait. Fireworks…that’s not a good idea is it? (Thinks)

Bangs and crashes. Smoke and fire.

Perhaps not. No. No fireworks.

It’ll be great to have him in the shop again. We can reopen. It’s surprising how many of the old customers have missed him. They’re forever telling me that he had a way with flowers. They say…that somehow flowers would last longer in the vase when he’d arranged them and I can believe that. Some people just have a gift. It’s like…it’s like it’s in their genes. And my boy has a gift for flowers. My boy is a wonderful florist. (Laughs) Funny thing is…as much as he enjoyed arranging the blooms for the customers….he hated cutting the flowers.  Said it was macabre. He told me…that once they were cut…they were dead…and all he was doing was arranging dead things…(laughs again) he was right I suppose. Can’t argue with that.

 (Pause)

She suddenly snatches the flowers from the vase and crunches them up.

You know it’s strange isn’t it. The men are the ones doing the fighting yet it seems to be the women who end up knowing so much more about war than men do. The way we wait. The way we keep things ticking over.

 (Pause)

And of course…no-one buries a soldier quite like a mother…

end


The Carer’s story…

ENTER a MALE  NURSE/A CARER.

He pushes a wheelchair that is empty except for a bag of shopping and crutches.

CARER:            There was never any doubt in my mind, none at all.

As far as I was concerned, Sheba Lee was the most beautiful woman in the world. She was a Goddess. She exhaled gold dust and whatever she touched she consecrated.

Her natural odour made my nose twitch with delight. And when she passed or came close I could have made love to her shadow. I would have paid good money to have her hair woven into cloth and made into the best suit I ever had.

She was the sun, the moon and all the other astronomical stuff you could think of.

Elizabeth Taylor should have been her handmaiden and me the saddle on her bike when she made those long physically exhausting trips to see her ailing mother…Sheba not Elizabeth Taylor

She was everything I ever dreamed of in a woman and much more besides.

And that was it…that was the rub…I only ever dreamed.

(Pause)

In truth, Sheba Lee was untouchable.

Apart from being twenty years older than me she had eight children and a brick wall of a husband known in the neighbourhood as ‘Beef’ on account that he was big and worked at the local abattoir.

Also, Beef was a man who could and would, upon hearing one misplaced or spoken-out-loud rogue word concerning his wife’s heavenly attributes, deliver instant death or at the very least, physical disfigurement, all in the blacking of an eye.

So, to all but the incredibly stupid and those with a death wish, Sheba Lee was out of bounds. Sheba Lee was best admired from afar.

Which I did. Constantly.

I had to love this wonderful woman from a distance and avoid her crazy husband from an even greater distance. And it was hard,

To say the least I wasn’t coping very well…but you know how I got through it. I’ll tell you shall I? Yes?

My plan, my coping mechanism required that any thoughts that I had concerning the divine Ms Lee, were instantly consigned to that small, damp, dust filled room, that was situated way, way, back in the deep and darkest recesses of my mind.

Mmmm?

A room that was specially fitted out and set aside for those exciting yet guilt-inducing times when my Mister Hyde would come to call. A secret space secured by the best fantasy locksmith my imagination could provide and moved for reasons of security, to a fresh location in my head every week.

In this imagination room me and Sheba became very, very close. In fact, inseparable.

And guess what…

This arrangement worked so well that in those annoying moments when reality encroached on my secret life with Beef’s wife and we were forced apart, I found myself behaving like one of those men you sometimes find yourself alone with, men who apparently happily married will insist on talking to you just so they have an excuse to pull a tattered photograph of their wife and kids from a battered old wallet.

That was me. Really. I’m afraid I used the ploy incessantly. I even cut a picture of a model from a magazine and pretended it was her. Not as pretty but I called her Sheba to anyone who would listen and allow me to show them the photo.

It helped.

It gave me something to talk about…brag about even. I didn’t feel so lonely and I wasn’t hurting anyone…except maybe myself.

(Angry) You know, looking back, my love story deserved a happy ending. When I think of the sheer effort I put into the relationship it seems only fair and right. 

(Pause).

Apparently, Sheba was on her way back from visiting her sick mother when the truck driver’s concentration was more than likely broken by a tantalising flash of tanned thigh. Revealed no doubt with the help of the soft breeze that was blowing on that fateful day.

It was strange you know… but a few hours before she took that ride, I had actually visited our room in my head and asked her to be especially careful. I remember my exact words…

‘The way you ride around on that thing. Too fast. You must be more careful. The roads are full of maniacs, drunks and God knows what…please…please for me…be more careful’.

I remember my imagination made her laugh at my concern. She threw back her dark mane of hair and told me that I was like her mother…’a worry wart’…whatever that is.

Anyway.

Eyewitnesses swore that the truck driver had wound down his window, wolf-whistled, then swerved directly into the path of an oncoming milk truck, killing both himself and the other driver.

My beautiful Sheba was terribly injured.

(Pause).

I have heard it said that monumental happenings in people’s lives can sometimes bring changes that are, in the long run, for the better.

That for instance, the aftermath of a terrible accident leading to say, an unexpected death, can bring fresh meaning to a life that might have been an ongoing chore or a painful effort to sustain.

Some say, that in the midst of the most heartfelt misery there can be transformation, rebirth even.

I think I believe that to be true.

After the accident things began to happen. The door to our secret room was thrown open and the light flooded in. It almost seemed that the time for secrets was over.

Sheba Lee spent a year and a half in hospital.

For 18 months I was a crazy man.

(Pause)

When she finally returned to the neighbourhood there were those who said that she was not the woman she used to be and harsh though that may sound, their words were accurate enough.

I knew what they meant.

Sheba Lee had become an invalid.

God. How I hate that word. Invalid. In-Valid.

My Sheba sometimes they say, didn’t recognise her own children.

She stumbled around the house as beautiful as ever but didn’t know where the hell she was. She had to be fed. And changed. And groomed. And…and…everything.

Poor Beef tried the best he could and in doing so, shone. Which goes someway to proving the theory I mentioned earlier, that in the midst of misery, people can and do change.

With the kids mostly farmed out to relatives Beef was on call for twenty-four hours a day to that poor woman’s every whim, every need, every cry…

Morning, noon and night Beef was there, ready, willing but unfortunately, highly un-able.

As my love’s general appearance and health plummeted, Beef had to face the fact that no-way could he go on accepting total responsibility for his wife’s general well-being. He finally had to admit to himself that he needed outside help.

There was a settlement thank God.

The truck owner’s insurance company paid out a large sum. A substantial amount of money that enabled Beef to return to the work that he loved killing animals. There was enough money now to employ a full-time nurse to cater for Sheba’s ever-increasing needs. But of course, even nurses have to rest. There are times when even the dedicated health professional has to have the normal luxury of time for themselves. Times when a break from such a demanding patient as Sheba had become, was essential.

Someone else was needed to share and shoulder the burden.

An assistant.

An hour or two a day that’s all.

A walk in the park.

A breath of fresh air.

Someone to watch over her.

(Pause)

I applied as soon as the advertisement appeared.

I got the job.

end


maybe tomorrow

by Ian Harris.

CHARLES sits in a comfortable armchair. He looks troubled, distraught even…

He pulls out an official looking envelope from a pocket and makes to open it. He hesitates.

CHARLES:   (Looks at letter)  I can’t. I can’t open it. I mean look at it.

This is the kind of envelope bad news comes in.

You know when you see one of these you get that shiver running up and down your spine? Like someone has walked on your grave. Well that’s how I feel. Nothing good ever came in a buff envelope. I feel sick.

(Pause)

I wish things had worked out better I really do. It’s not as though we parted in bad spirits…well…not totally. I suppose you could say that there was a…what would you call it…a spike in our relationship? Yeah…things were a little spiky. It’s not as though I didn’t try to understand…I did, I really tried. I made an effort. It’s just that…well…to be honest I didn’t think he would go without me.

I was shocked to say the least.

I mean when he walked through our front door wearing a bloody uniform, well, you could have knocked me down with a feather. He looked bloody fantastic but that wasn’t the point.  I just didn’t think it was fair.

It was like throwing my failure…if you can call it that…back in my face. Just because he got through and I had no chance. There was no need to rub it in.

(Pause)

I thought we were a partnership. I thought partnerships did everything together. All for one and one for all, that sort of thing.

It’s not as though we disagreed about our reasons for wanting to sign up. Oh no, we both agreed that we wanted to do our duty. Together. We were absolutely sure about that.

There are some things in life Tony said, that you have to be willing to stand up for…stand up and be counted. And I agreed with that. Wholeheartedly.

There are as Tony said, ‘some things that are worth fighting for. And some things’, and this was I admit, the hard bit, ‘…some things worth’…well, ‘dying for’.

Don’t get me wrong I believe that to be true but at the same time it did shake me up a bit. You know, when ‘dying for’ actually  sinks in. The reality of the situation. But. I knew in my heart Tony was right. So. We were both in agreement. No problem. We decided there and then we’d enlist. We’d stand up and be counted. Together. Shoulder to shoulder. Side by side and in those off duty moments…hand in hand. Although Tony was very clear when he quite rightly said we’d have to be careful about those hand in hand moments.  Anyway…I suppose that’s when our real problems began.

See.

(Pause)

Tony was so much better at butch than me. There was no way he was going to be…how can I put it…discovered when we sat the selection tests.

Me…well I’m a different story.

Might as well paint ‘Gay’ on   my forehead.

Tony said. I would have fallen at the first fence. They would have sussed me out the moment I walked through the recruiting office door.

Anyway… we practiced. We rehearsed day and night. Boy did we practice.

Tony took me through it time and time again, but…well…I couldn’t get it right. I’m just me if you know what I mean.  It’s not as though I’m overtly camp am I? (Pause-frowns) All right…please yourself.

(Pause)

It’s just well…Tony says I give something off. God knows what but apparently it’s there for all to see. Even those not looking for it. Plain as day says Tony. Personally I don’t get it. I don’t understand why they wouldn’t want me. I’m just as capable as the next man as pulling the trigger. Oh yes…I could kill someone, no problem.

I mean an enemy is an enemy no matter what side you bat for wouldn’t you agree? I could do it. Easy. You should see me when I’m in a bad mood. Nightmare. Enough to give anyone the screaming hab-dabs.

(Pause).

Anyway. We gave up in the end.

Tony says I’m a lost cause and I thought that was that. I figured that we might both stay where we were and maybe redirect our war efforts away from the front line and do something useful closer to home. There were plenty of jobs going at Monty’s. That’s the prosthetics factory over the road. I even applied thinking that Tony would follow. But no. I couldn’t believe what happened next.

(Pause)

He only went and signed up. Without me. Broke my heart I can tell you. And even then, when he’d signed on the dotted line I kept on kidding myself that he wouldn’t actually go. I thought our relationship was far too strong for a little thing like a war to break it up. Of course I was wrong. Off our little soldier boy went.

          (Pause).

Of course, he sailed through all the tests just like we thought he would. He told me all about it.

Apparently they put him in something like a dentist chair and flashed images on a screen in front of him. You know what I mean…images. Naked women. Naked…men.

The whole point being that they could measure your reaction to what you were looking at. Something to do with levels of perspiration. Pupil dilation. Heartbeat that sort of thing.

‘Course I would have blown the machine sky high. But not our Tony. Oh no not him. Not a flinch. Not a blink. Nothing. Like a bloody robot. Amazing.

So…there you have it. The next thing I know he’s standing in the hall way looking very swish in his uniform. I could have knocked his block off. I was glad the bloody thing itched like the devil and made him come out in a rash.

Serves him right.

But you know…even then, looking at him with all his brass buttons and badges, I still didn’t think he’s actually go.

(Pause)  

(Bitterly) The last I saw of my Tony was on board a bloody great ship waving goodbye at no-one in particular. I say that because it was a sort of general wave. You know, a vacant wave so no-one could see he was saying his goodbyes to another man. Huh. Meaning…he wasn’t even looking at me.

Let’s face it, no-one would have spotted that if he had looked at me would they? That would have been OK wouldn’t it? It wouldn’t have hurt. You know, just a small sign of affection. A small sign of recognition even.

So there you are.

He’s away somewhere, he can’t tell me where according to his last letter, but rest assured he’s having a grand time and he’s got what he wanted. I expect he’s fighting his little cotton socks off.

I must admit I secretly hoped they would find a place for him in a canteen somewhere peeling potatoes and cooking breakfasts for a thousand hairy soldiers. But no. He’s, what is it they say? Front line. Up to his neck in muck and bullets.

(Pause) .

And I can tell you…I miss him…terribly. I’m so worried. He’s written a couple of times now but he’s such a gossip that the censors have blacked out more than half of his letter, so none of it make any real sense. I think I got to ‘Dear Charlotte’ when the Black felt tip pen made its first appearance.

Oh Yes, that’s me by the way. ‘Charlotte’. Not Charlie Charlotte.

Ms Charlotte Bravington  Number 2 The Lodge. Me.

Caused the postman a few moments of confusion I can tell you but what else can we do? Seems the only way in this day and age we can communicate, if you can call it that. Anyway, I soon sorted the confusion with the postie by telling him that Tony’s younger sister is staying with me for the duration. And strangely, no matter how hard the randy young fool drops the hint that he’d like to meet her, she’s always out whenever he calls. Odd that, don’t you think?

Anyway, with the  ‘Dear Charlotte’ ploy Tony can more or less say what he wants. You know expressions of love that sort of thing. I’m still waiting.

(Pause).

I know he has to be careful, I’m not stupid. I know the boys in the barracks would have a fit if they knew the truth?  They’d rip his epaulettes off if they had any idea.  Anyway, one hoped that a ‘Dear Charlotte’ letter would allow him, albeit in code,  to tell me that he loves me.

But he never does. Ah well. Perhaps he’s scared? I don’t know. (Pause) What a way to live eh?

There you are, away in some godforsaken land putting your life on the line because you chose to stand up for certain values that you believe strongly in….(incredulous) and you can’t be yourself. Criminal.

You have to live and God forbid, sometimes die, pretending?

It’s not right. I tell you. It. Is. Not. Right. (Pause) I wish I could be with him. I wouldn’t be afraid you know. Not by Tony’s side. He has that certain something. Something that fills you with confidence…and trust. You always feel safe by Tony’s side. He’s a special man. A one off.

(Laughs) You know…I was amazed when a man like him expressed an interest in me.

You know they say you can spot one of your own? Well I didn’t. No idea.  It just didn’t occur to me that he was of…well you know …the persuasion. He was so…am I allowed to say this…he was so…so…heterosexual. And that was because he was simply…comfortable with himself.

Unlike me and my friends who tend to hide our lights under a bushel he knew exactly who and what he was and he couldn’t care less what anyone thought.

Me and  my friends, sad to say, we lead two lives. Both lives completely independent of each other. You have to be like that if you want to work. Earn a living. I hate to say this but we’re used to hiding away.

Like bloody vampires we only come out at night and usually only at weekends and somewhere at a distance from this dump. Even then you don’t necessarily feel that safe. Well he was different. Loud. Very vocal. Confident. Not a care in the world.

When I first saw him he was very drunk and he was with a bunch of tough looking rugby player types. Stereotypical tough guys. All broken noses and short haircuts. All mouth and trousers as my mother used to say. They looked like they’d just finished a match. You know…very clean. Very…showered. Oooo and they were such a noisy crew him and his mates.

To tell the truth well I thought we were in for a bit of trouble. For God’s sake I was sat with Flowery Freddy and there’s no holding him back when he’s on a night out. Dressed to kill he was. Looked like the proverbial explosion in a Greenhouse. But no. No problems at all from the rugby crowd.

Anyway. Tony smiled at me. Over the top of his pint he gave me a cheeky little grin. At first I thought he was trying to be funny. But no. When I went to the Gents he followed me in and I remember thinking…oh-ho loose teeth coming up as you do. But while we were washing our hands he introduced himself all matter of fact like. Nothing seedy. Very polite. Very formal. A gentleman.

Turns out he, unlike his chums wasn’t drunk at all. He was just sort of joining in. It was a very pleasant first meeting. And well…things moved on from that. Nothing rushed. All very calm and collected. And here we are. Together. (Pause) Except we’re not.

(Pause-waves letter)

Anyway…best open it. See what’s going on a?

(Rips open the envelope…hesitates…)

No. Can’t. Not yet.

(Pause)

Maybe tomorrow.

CHARLES, stands, wipes his eyes,  shoves the envelope into his pocket and EXITS hurriedly. 

We gaze at the empty armchair for a moment.

Blackout.

end

 

 

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