TARA – 14 year old, jean clad, attitude, intelligent
TARA’s MOTHER – 38 year old, divorced, mother of 3, father has the 2 boys – yoga master, Zen, fit, depressed, organic (this is essentially a non-speaking role until the end of the scene)
TINA – 14 year old friend and neighbour of Tara – jean clad, not too much attitude, quiet
The scene opens with Tara bounding into her home after school. Tara’s mother is in a lotus position facing the lit fireplace with her eyes shut, deep in concentration. Waterfall music plays throughout the speaker system within the home. Tara enters with a bang and calls out for her mother without bothering to notice her mother in the living room to her right as she races straight ahead to the kitchen.
Tara: Hey Ma! what’re ya doin’? calling out in a loud voice
When there is no answer she pops her head into the living room. Her mother does not respond. Tara performs an eye roll and a headshake
Tara: Well okay, well since you’re not answering I guess I’ll just have to tell you…
Tara glances again to see an unmoved figure.
She sighs and throws her arms up, letting them fall to her thighs with a slap.
Tara: You know Ma – stats show that a child who is virtually ignored by her mother seeks love elsewhere – mostly in dark and dirty alleys with drug addicts and pedophiles…
voice raises to a higher volume at the word pedophiles
Tara pours and drinks a glass of juice leaving fridge door open, empty glass and juice container on the counter while she opens and closes the same cupboards 2-3 times. Each time slamming louder than the last.
Tara: There’s NOTHIN’ to eat! Gawd! There’s only RABBIT food – do you EVEN GO grocery shopping??
Tara: that was a question ….
Tara: Ya know – I’d like to know one other kid who comes home to a freakin’ zulu-zombie-zen-head who listens to water falls all freakin’ day! – Tina’s Mom – you know Tina? Across the street- my best friend? Well she’s got it made. HER Mom listens to hip-hop – they dance together EVERYDAY – they IN-TER-ACT and I gotta come home to this crap –
Voice trails off at the end as she stuffs strawberries in her mouth. Tara’s cell phone rings. Tara pulls her i-phone out of her back pocket, taking a quick glance at the screen before answering with her mouth still full.
Tara: Talk to me Tina (mumbling due to strawberries)
Tara: No she can’t come over, she’s MEE-DEE-TA-TING.
Tara: WHAT? OhMyGawd OhMyGawd – I’m comin, I’m comin – stay on the phone
Tara runs down the hallway leaving the fridge and cupboards open, glances with hesitation at her still, still mother and runs out the door and across the street where Tina’s mother is being taken away in a body bag.
Tara: (with slight hysteria) What happened? Did it happen while you guys were dancing?
Tina: I never told anyone. I never told anyone…
Tara: Told anyone what? Tell me. Tell me!
Tara put her arm around Tina’s shoulder and together they moved away from the ambulance(?) to sit, huddled closely on the front step of Tina’s house.
Tina: I’m sorry I didn’t tell you …
Tina: I kinda lied … My Mom was drunk everyday when I got home. She would be dancing like an idiot. She forced me to dance with her – drinkin’ from her bottle of peace – that what she called it. Her bottle of peace… her peace pills and her bottle of peace to wash ‘em down… I’m sorry I never told you …
Tina was crying to the point of sobbing now. Tara stared ahead and hugged her friend tighter, rubbing her back. Tara had a glazed look in her eyes.
Tara: It’s okay…
Tara: My mother smokes pot. She’s a frikken space cadet.
Tina: (smiling) but what does she eat to cool the munchies?
Tara: (smiling) ha! A bag of carrots – we go through a LOT of carrots
They both giggle.
Tina: Remember when we smoked?
Tina: Then we bought that huge cookie-dough ice cream but had no spoons?
Tina: We ate it with our fingers…. Those were the good ole days…
Pause, quiet voices follow
Tina: Ever since my Dad died she died too. I tried … (more tears)
Tara: (wisely) Believe me there is nothin’ you could’ve done …
Tina: I could have told someone – at least
Tara: (wisely) What could anyone do? My mom has been dead for years – ever since my Dad left with the boys. I should have gone with him.
Tina:(incredulous) Tahhhrah! I can’t believe you just said that! Your mother is alive! Mine’s dead!
Tara: I’m sorry , I’m sorry – I’m really sorry. That was a stupid thing to say. I just wanted you to know that I know how you feel. I can’t imagine how you feel. I’m sorry. (Tara is crying now as well)
Tina: What am I gonna do? Where am I gonna live? I don’t even know where my brother is! He could be dead too! (whining) (hysteria is creeping back into her voice)
Tara: (soothing) You can live with us. Don’t worry. Everything will be fine. Don’t worry. You can live with us.
Tina: What will your Mom say?
Tara: She won’t notice for a while. I’ll figure it out. Now, don’t worry- please, please. I’m your best friend. I’ll take care of you.
Tina and Tara face each other holding each others hands and looking at each others eyes.
Tina: I can cook. I do it everyday anyway.
Tara: I can grocery shop so you can cook. We can shop together with a list.
They smile slightly.
Tina: I’ll clean our room. I can stay in your room right? I don’t want to be alone. (whistfully)
Tara nods and smiles wide.
Tara: I’ll do our laundry.
Tina: I’m never getting married.
Tara: Me either – look what happens…
Tina: Let’s promise right now to always be together.
They pinkie swear.
Tara’s mother saunters across the street.
Tara’s Mother: I saw an ambulance earlier. Is everything alright?
Tara and Tina glance at each other and then stare for a moment at Tara’s mother.
Tara: Yeah Mom – everything’s cool. I took care of it.
Tara: (softly) Why don’t you go ahead and get dinner ready. Tina’s coming over to eat – she’s sleeping over tonight.
Tara catches Tina’s eye with a bit of a wink.
Tara’s Mother: Okay girls – see you later.
Tara and Tina watch her walk away.
The girls laugh and cry at the same time.
Tara: (sadly) See Tina? I told you she was dead…
Tina: (sadly) Yeah – a peace zombie, like my Mom.
Thanks for reading the first scene for a play I have ever written :) Ballsy to post this aren`t I? Guess what? I love criticism, feed back, ideas – the works.
While I was checking the spelling of Criticism I came across an article on how to accept it. Read it. Posting it here.
And now we ALL know why my days fly! – bye for now, Lesley