A Dark Visitor from the Past

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INT. A MOSTLY BLANK THEATRE STAGE— EVENING

Whoopi Goldberg sits alone at a foldout picnic table. She drums on the table with the eraser of a No. 2 pencil. The clock on the wall says 19:52. She seems weary, as if she’s been waiting for some time.

The stage-left door opens and Jeff enters. Whoopi Goldberg launches into him immediately. 

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Can you please take a look at the clock and tell me what time it is?

JEFF: (scolded, timid) It’s 19:52.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: And what time did we say we were going to meet today?

JEFF: I don’t believe we said. I mean I was late yesterday because I took Mom to the oncolo—

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Yeah, yeah, I’ve heard the sad sick mommy story. Save it for someone who’ll give you what you think you want from all that— me, I’m hear to help your loser ass and so far, since I got here, most of what I’ve been doing is sitting at that table right there, hour after hour, waiting for you to show up which you seem to be so consistently good at not doing. Now what I suspect (growing increasingly agitated) what I suspect, see, is that you just have a way of not showing up for yourself. It’s very convenient to blame everything that’s fucked up in your life on every shitty thing that’s happened to you but before you go on doing that I would just like— I would just like to ask you one question— Are there other people to whom just as awful things have happened, maybe even worse who have gone on not only to survive but to thrive?!

She waits for an answer, gets none.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Well?!

Jeff has begun shaking, is crumbling under the harsh admonitions of one of his heroes. 

JEFF: (confused, crying) I don’t know.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: You don’t know?

JEFF: I guess.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: (mocking, laughing) You guess?

JEFF: YES!

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Yes, what?

JEFF: (dissolved into tears) Yes, I’m sure there are lots of other people who have gone through horrible marriages and domestic violence and gotten robbed in their divorces and gone to war and buried friends with AIDS and lost their dad and survived alcoholis—

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Oh wah, wah, wah, cry me a fucking river— see? you can’t even admit that there are winners out there who’ve been through much worse shit that you without using it as an opportunity to itemize every fucking single bad thing that’s ever happened to you and I can guarantee you if I had the interest I could challenge ever single one of those things and just see how much or should I say how little truth might be hiding in a whole lot of self pity!

JEFF: (barely a whisper) Please don’t.

Whoopi Goldberg has backed Jeff up against the table. He is now bowed backward almost lying on the table top as she angrily spits these accusations. Jeff is crying uncontrollably.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: It has been two years since you broke your “for-better-or-worse” wedding vows, why don’t you just let that shit go and move on with your pitiful life? He’s happy now! Happy now because he’s free of being married to a nagging bitch like YOU!!

At the precise moment when it seems that Whoopi Goldberg is going to eat Jeff alive, the stage-right door slams open against the wall. In marches a Second Whoopi Goldberg with fire in her eyes. When the First Whoopi Goldberg spots the second, she grabs Jeff around the throat and starts to choke him to death. 

The Second Whoopi, upon seeing this runs behind the First Whoopi Goldberg and tries to wrest Jeff’s throat from the First Whoopi’s grasp. 

THE FIRST WHOOPI GOLDBERG: (to the second Whoopi Goldberg) Get off me you bitch! This little cunt is mine!

The Second Whoopi Goldberg looks around for some kind of weapon, sees the pencil, grabs it, and drives it into the First Whoopi Goldberg’s forehead. The First Whoopi Goldberg lets out a scream. The sound of her voice is transformed into a demonic and earsplitting roar. The Second  Whoopi Goldberg reaches into the wound and rips away the fleshy disguise worn by the Fake First Whoopi Goldberg, revealing the demon inside. 

The Real Whoopi Goldberg continues to rip the rubbery flesh and hair until it falls like an empty scuba suit on the floor with a thud. 

The demon appears as a skinny thirty-five year-old man, bald, covered in a sort of amniotic fluid as if he’d just been birthed by an alien. He has the scraggly remnants of a goatee and mustache, his eyes are like inverted moons. He has a scoliotic spine with pronounced vertebrae almost breaking the skin, his tiny trollish feet grasp the floor with yellowing nails. He hisses and snarls at The Real Whoopi Goldberg and at Jeff. 

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: (strong, confident, commanding) What’s your name demon?

The demon laughs defiantly.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: (louder, with greater authority) DEMON! What is your name?

Whoopi takes a step toward the creature who then scurries away and scampers halfway up the wall squatting there, defying gravity, laughing a horrible and devilish laugh. 

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Demon, just tell me your name and you’ll be free to go!

DEMON: I’m free now bitch!

The demon scurries across the wall toward a large warehouse window on the upstage wall. He makes his way towards the window. 

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Oh no you don’t, you bastard! Not until you give this boy back what you took from him! Only then will you be free to go!

The demon sneers and snorts, his mind is destroyed by the cancerous evil.

DEMON: I told you before you, I’M FREE NOW BITCH!

The demon sprouts huge bat wings, circles the room and then crashes thought the window making his escape. Whoopi bends and covers her head to protect herself from the falling shards of glass. 

She stands, shakes off the debris  and walks over to the table, looking for Jeff. 

She looks underneath to find a terrified Jeff, arms wrapped around his bent legs, rocking. 

Whoopi offers her hand, he takes it and crawls from beneath the table. 

With Jeff still on his knees, Whoopi Goldberg pulls him into a nurturing hug, his head resting against her breast. They stay in the embrace for several seconds. 

Finally, Whoopi reaches down and takes Jeff’s chin in her hand. 

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: I’m gonna tell you something and I want you to listen to me good, okay?

JEFF: (quietly) Okay.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: I don’t ever want you to be deceived like that again, okay? Anybody or anything that ever talks to you like that anymore is not on your side, offers you nothing good, and has no place in your life, understand?

JEFF: Yes ma’am.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Anything that presents itself as an ally to you who speaks to you in the same way as those who hurt you did— you can be sure its a demon in disguise okay? Even if by all appearances, just like today, whoever stands in front of you is presenting itself as your friend— things are going to be different now. Things are going to go better now. You are going to get better now, and at least for the next little while, your lessons are going to come a lot more gently.

JEFF: (laughing through the drying tears) That sounds good to me.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: ‘at’s my boy.

She helps him to stand. 

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: So tomorrow, you come on in here when you can make it, we’ll be waiting her for you when you do. We’re going to do whatever it takes to pull you out of this mess and set those number 13s on the road to Happy Destiny, sound good?

JEFF: Sounds good.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Good boy.

Whoopi Goldberg moves to exit stage-left. Just before she reaches the door she turns.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Get some good rest tonight okay Sugar?

JEFF: Yes ma’am.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: And drop all that “ma’am” shit. I’m barely older than you are!

She reaches for the door.

JEFF: Hey Whoopi?

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: Yes Jeff?

JEFF: Thanks. See y’all tomorrow.


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