Thursday, May 06, 2010

Act V, Scene VII, THE FIRE IN BRADFORD--The final curtain



INT. NIGHT..

WE ARE IN THE PROFESSOR'S APARTMENT.

THE PROFESSOR AND ROSIE ARE IN BED IN VARIOUS STAGES OF UNDRESS.

SUDDENLY THERE IS A DOOR OPENING. NO KNOCK. SLIGHT CREAK.
THEY LOOK TO SEE CELIA, COWLED, IN THE DOORWAY.

ROSIE,

What the hell is going on? Who are you?

THE PROFESSOR:

Celia. You devil.

CELIA

Your devil. Your devil alone. I know you better than you know yourself. You didn't tell me about this woman.

PROFESSOR,

Why should I? You're off and married. I should have stayed home and brooded?

ROSIE,

What the hell is going on? Who are you?

CELIA

I am Celia.

SHE REACHES INTO HER SHAWL, AND SUDDENLY PRODUCES A KNIFE.

SHE GOES TO STRIKE AT ROSIE, WHO IS STANDING AT BEDSIDE HALF-UNDRESSED.

THE PROFESSOR GOES TO INTERVENE, BUT IS CUT ON THE ARM.

PROFESSOR,

Death, you bitch. You are death.

CELIA

Your death.

SHE STABS AT THE PROFESSOR. HE HAS HIS HANDS IN FRONT OF HIM, SO HE AVOIDS A FATAL CUT.

ROSIE HAS TAKEN THE LAMPSHADE OFF THE LAMPSTAND . THE ROOM SUDDENLY BRIGHTENS. SHE PICKS UP THE LAMPSTAND, AND WITH EFFORT, LIFTS IT, SWINGS IT INTO AN ARC AND BEANS CELIA ON THE HEAD WITH IT. CELIA FALLS TO THE FLOOR.

ROSIE (YELLS)
David, where did you find this monster?

THE PROFESSOR.

Monster for sure.

Call 911. Tell them there has been a home invasion.

ROSIE IS DIALING. SHE IS TALKING TO THE 911 DISPATCHER.

ROSIE

They are telling me to stay on the phone.

CELIA IS BEGINNING TO STIR.
SHE OPENS HER EYES, REALIZES WHERE SHE IS, SUDDENLY GATHERS HERSELF...AND IT JUST AS SUDDENLY,IN A RUSH OF TAFFETA SKIRTS, IS OUT THE DOOR.


ROSIE ON THE PHONE.

Yes, she just got away....

SHE PUTS THE PHONE DOWN

You all right?

THE PROFESSOR

Yeah. You?

ROSIE.

No real harm done. But she really fucked us up tonight...

THEY SIT ON THE BED.

ROSIE

Where do you find these people?

PROFESSOR

You tell me.

ROSIE

Yes, I'll tell you.

Lots of Celias in the world. And lots of Gambinis. Not so many Davids.
The Celias and Gambinis hear other voices in other rooms.
...But yours is different voice.
So they want to kill you.
Yes, kill you. Right from the get-go. But your so-called intelligence protected you.

(SHE SMILES)

And all us broads.

CURTAIN

15 comments:

Mona said...

Lots of Celias! oh oh! Doppelgangers....

the walking man said...

No have Celia led away in cuffs laying out her grievances in a final over the top soliloquy. Have her voice the last one heard as David is bandaged up by Rosie.

She after all started the ball rolling knowing full well that that David would become obsessed with her blatant sexual appeal (every other man has always done her bidding, but he broke free after a sit down with his father) and she could not stand the thought of it.

In the stage direction have the make up on her age her ten years, have the audience see her as she sees herself in the mirror and what she was doing all along....trying to hold on to the youthful beauty that has long faded.

Mona said...

But Ivan, I thought that last time it was Celia who was begging the professor to let her husband & herself alone...Now how come she is after him after telling him off!

No. This has got to be her double...the evil omen...

Charles Gramlich said...

So Celia does care after all.

ivan@creativewriting.ca said...

Mona,

Doppelgangers aplenty.

At one unpublished scene, I had Celia saying, "You are Heathcliff, you are Blueblood!"
And at another time,"We'll get back together, but it'll take a long time...many months."...this was shortly after she remarried.
Damn. The bait always out.

Fact is, I began running out of gas on this play. Had to give it sort of a quick Don Juan ending. Possibly to save my own sanity as the work was starting to get to me.

ivan@creativewriting.ca said...

Charles,

So Celia does care after all.

That is a brillian insight.

ivan said...

Mark,

Most astute suggestion.

Yes, I think that would do it, the soliloque.

But I fear I have run out of gas.

TomCat said...

I was right. You fooled me. I expected closure.

ivan@creativewriting.ca said...

:)

Mona said...

I did not expect a closure. I like open ends!

ivan@creativewriting.ca said...

Mona,

I must admit I got a little impatient with the work.

Mark (The Walking Man) also thought there should at least (to coin an oxymoron)-- be more.
He suggested a final soliloque by Celia, now much older,having completed her prison term, living with a young man, practically a boy, and easily manipulated like all her past older men-- she begins to learn the truth about herself.
A goddess at fifty gone to seed and drugs realizing what she had done to her original husband, her second husband, and, finally the professor...The professor ends up taking his father's proffered money and travelling all over the world, spending, thinking fornicating. She realizes that she has ruined the professor's life, while at the same time ruining her own; but the professor has some foibles and powers of his own. He could be her Heathcliff...

In a way Celia and David are a good match. She is beautiful, vain, likes to set up men in plays,her "movies"-- leaves them hung up on a rock, Celia's rock. Loreli rock. Promethean rock.
But the professor, up to the time he meets Celia, is very much the same type.but male version.
There is a collision of worlds, and neither Planet Celia or Planet David has enough gravity to attract../ So they repel each other, following laws of physics.
Celia ends up going to Hell, and so, finally does David.
He never gets over the Celia experience, spends his fathers money and ends up homless person. And Celiea nearly a bag lady with her nineteen year old boyfriend.

Gad it is four in the morning. There is the temptation to add Celias sololoque now, but, as my father-in-law used to say, "intellectual work in he middle of the night will leave you nervous and useless the following day."
...As it is, I am nervous and uselesss already from the strain of writing the play.

...But it is Mark's suggestion of a soliloque by Celia, and maybe evern the professor, that might finally make this a good play.
Thans so much for the interest!

...and I must thank Mark for a brilliant insight into the play and how it could be wound up (while staying open-ended? :)

TomCat said...

I don't mind open ends. This one caught me by surprise.

ivan@creativewriting.ca said...

TomCat,

The master of open-ended fiction, especially science fiction, is Stanislaw Lem.

Hell, if I could write as well as he, I'd turn Polish, instead of just next to Polish. :)

benjibopper said...

Yes this was a bit of a surprise - Celia flipped her lid and her position. Maybe it needed a bit more foreshadowing?

ivan said...

You're absolutely right, Benji.

There should have been more foreground before Celia-figure.

She certainly seems to be acting out of character.

I was going to do more work on this ending, but ran out of gas at about the time good news came in over my novels. I was distracted and, I fear, finished this play somewhat sloppily. I shall try again.
...Congrats on your publishing success, both online and in the East Coast magazines.