Warning: Parental discretion is advised, contains implied nudity, adult language. The scenes described are for illustration only. The author is not responsible for your actions should you attempt to enact the play, or use any of the strategies described. Many schools will not support, and may punish such actions.
[Slightly right centre stage, a voluptuous woman, her body tattooed with architectural drawings, stands holding a survey transit. From stage left, Gerard and Pietre enter carrying their plans.]
Gerard: Crims I'm tired.
Pietre: Want more coffee?
Gerard: You put em up, I'll get it. [begins trek across stage, stops when he sees woman] [mutters] Oh hell. He stands staring at the woman. She ignores him completely, holding her gaze on the audience.
Pietre [coming up behind Gerard]: Christ, why'd she do that?
Gerard: To win. To win you stupid ass. What a waste. I need coffee.
Pietre: I'll get it. Sit down. You look terrible. [exits stage right]
Gerard: Wouldn't want to be inconsistent, bad enough to be blind. [Pauses, walks around the woman, experimentally rubs one of the lines on her stomach. It doesn't smudge.]
Gerard: Bloody tattoos. Didn't think that one through very far, did you. Couldn't you have at least told us? Could have gone out dancing or something. What's the gadget? Telescope? Can't figure how it fits. Looks like you're working with woman's issues again? Isn't that cold? How long have you been standing here?
Pietre: Here. Gods, why don't you two just go at it, not like it's a public place or anything. Careful ya don't spill it on her.
Gerard: You'll want to be nice to her, she just won the competition.
Pietre: Only if they don't arrest her first. What's with the camera. Statement about the media?
Gerard: 'T's not a camera. Optical though. I think it's just a mix-in.
Pietre: Qua? [Pronounced Kwahh?]
Gerard: Like, just a little piece that she added to make people wonder, kinda associated, cause it looks like it's optical, and she's maybe saying something about images and presentations, and that kind of stuff. She's making it a puzzle. Why is a naked tattooed woman standing in the middle of the crit room holding a telescope? You add something like this, something more than is needed, and suddenly it doesn't matter if you fell down somewhere else.
Pietre: Ah. What's the project. Sit down, you look awful. I'll look myself.
[Gerard flops into one of the nearby chairs]
Gerard: Some sort of woman's shelter, I can't see why the optics though. Hiding the hurt?
Pietre: Not hiding much now, are you? [He pokes the woman]
Gerard: Oh grow up. She just won. Be nice to her.
Pietre: Where's her write-up. Ha. She didn't do a write-up. She can't win if she didn't finish.
Gerard: You ever listen when I talk? It doesn't matter. This puzzle, this game, doesn't matter any more.
Pietre: Doesn't matter. Found it. She wrote it on the insides of her legs. Can't see it though, kinda dumb. What's the point of a write-up no-one can see. [He flops across a few chairs facing the woman]
Gerard: Just cause she doesn't open her legs to you doesn't mean she'll never open them. Oh, heck, sorry, that sounded worse than I meant it. Sorry. I mean, maybe she'll be moving when the profs are here, some sort of ritual or dance, you know, sun strikes her, she begins moving, or maybe whenever one of the profs touches her she does something, but that telescope just doesn't make sense.
Pietre: If she is gonna move, do you suppose she did something like where the pattern mutates? Maybe she's got another plan on there, an observatory or something.
Gerard: Maybe. She's a smart cookie.
Pietre: Not if she gets arrested for it.
Gerard: She won't be, the profs love this kind of stuff. And if she were, they'd treat her like some sort of goddess. We'd be hearing about her for months while they got her out. How did she think this up? I mean, was she just sitting there and it hit her?
Pietre: Maybe she just wanted to. Dream from childhood or something.
Gerard: She's not really the type. I mean, come on, you know her. No. I think she had a reason. You don't do something this major without a reason, and she definitely doesn't do something this major without a reason.
Pietre: Maybe it's a joke.
Gerard: Maybe, but what's the punch-line? Was she just pushing ideas around and she thought it up? Intellectual gymnastics that wound up drawing lines all over her body?
Pietre: What did she use, anyway. [Gets up to check.]
Gerard: Donno, permanent though.
Pietre: Really? That's gonna hurt gettin it off.
Gerard: Maybe it is a joke. Maybe when she moves her legs there'll be a punch-line inside, or something. [He slurps down most of the coffee at a gulp.]
Pietre: Is there an order I'm supposed to look at everything?
Gerard: I don't know, I don't see any story here, but I still don't get most of it. I wonder if it's some woman's lib thing.
Pietre: You mean a story about women's lib?
Gerard: Well, yeah, or just about women, they do that. I wonder if the telescope has something to do with exploration? Maybe it's some great explorer-woman. Maybe she named her shelter after some woman, and all this is just telling her story.
Pietre: She was a woman who had a lot of tattoos, liked to show them off rather thoroughly, and had a fetish for telescopes. Sounds like a winner.
Gerard: I'm sure there's a story there, or maybe it's just a meaning, or something. She didn't just decide to do this, there had to be a reason. Christ, wish I'd thought of this.
Pietre: I think I prefer her, who'd want to see you naked.
Gerard: I think I love this project. No, I think I love this woman. What kind of mind do you need to come up with a stunt like this?
Pietre: Nothing to do with her body? Hmm, [he affects a robotic voice] "doesn't compute."
Gerard: Don't you feel it? I mean, as we peel back the layers on the mystery, you feel like you're really beginning to know her. I never would have guessed that she could do this. And I just want to get inside her, figure out what makes her tick. You know.
Pietre: Course, she'll be in jail, you really want to wait for her? Hey! I saw her arm tremble. Ha, that'll teach you.
Gerard: You can be such a jerk. She's gone to all this trouble to create something wonderful for us, and all you can say is "I saw her arm tremble."
Pietre: Wake up, drink your coffee, get a life. She did it to win, not to give us anything, 'cept maybe a cheap thrill.
Gerard: There are other sources of pleasure in life, you know. I mean, think of how we're going to feel when we finally solve this, when we finally know why she did it. It's got to be something big. I mean, you don't do something like this for no reason. Really big. Or maybe it's just for fun, that'd be cool too, I suppose, just hang around for a few hours, cause a stir, cop the A grade.
Pietre: That's what she's doing. She just likes getting A's and's an exhibitionist.
Gerard: Maybe, but I trust her more than that. I mean, it isn't really that fun a game, not after last night. No. It's got to be something big, and it's gonna feel good when we figure it out.
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This work is Copyright (c) Mike Fletcher 1997