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by AmyLyn
Rated: 13+ · Script/Play · Psychology · #1026145
Beware the things you cannot see...
THEY
A One-Act Play by
AmyLyn Vause



*the curtain opens to a lone room, dimly lit. Two chairs are placed in the middle, facing several inches apart from each other. One chair is occupied by a DOCTOR, nicely attired, notepad on his lap and a pen in his hand. Directly across from him is a young GIRL, perhaps 7 or 8 years old, slouching slightly and looking downward. There is a small table between them*

Doctor
(speaking gently) Hello, Anne.
(ANNE remains silent. The DOCTOR leans forward and speaks louder.)
Hello, Anne.
(ANNE picks her head up.)

Anne
(quietly) Hello.

Doctor
(speaking gently again) How are you feeling today?
(ANNE shrugs, but says nothing)
Oh, but you must be feeling something, Anne. Anne? Your mommy is very hurt. How does that make you feel? Sad? I am sure she misses you very much.

Anne
I guess so…

Doctor
Scared?
(ANNE shrugs, but says nothing. The DOCTOR writes in his chart, then looks back to ANNE.)

Anne
(pause) Can we go now?

Doctor
No, Anne. Not yet. Tell me, how are you feeling today?

Anne
(sighs) Okay.

Doctor
Your Aunt Mary called. She said you pushed some boys on the playground. Is that true?

Anne
Yes…

Doctor
Why did you do that? Did they hurt your feelings? Were they being bullies? You know, sometimes boys might do that to girls because they like them.

Anne
No, they didn’t hurt my feelings. They didn’t do anything.

Doctor
No?
(The DOCTOR writes something down in his chart.)
Hrmm…

Anne
They weren’t doing anything…

Doctor
Oh?
(The DOCTOR picks his head up from writing.)

Anne
They really didn’t…They were going to get hurt.
(ANNE shifts in her chair.)

Doctor
Go on…
(ANNE remains silent, looking down at her feet as they dangle from the chair.)
Anne…were they some place they shouldn’t have been? Maybe behind a car?

Anne
No.

Doctor
What were they doing?

Anne
Saying things…

Doctor
Ah, so they did hurt your feelings?
(The DOCTOR writes more in his chart)
What did they –

Anne
It wasn’t me. They didn’t hurt me.

Doctor
(nodding) Hrm…then a friend?

Anne
No, not really.

Doctor
Can you tell me what they said?

Anne
(ANNE fidgets and picks her head up, facing the DOCTOR.)
Who?

Doctor
The boys…What did they say to make you want to push them?

Anne
(aggravated) I told you that.

Doctor
You thought they were going to be hurt?

Anne
Yes.

Doctor
But, what did they say that -

Anne
They said they’d get hurt if they didn’t stop.

Doctor
They? You mean the boys? They were fighting and you wanted them to stop?

Anne
(vehemently) No! It wasn’t the boys! It was them! They said they would hurt the boys if they didn’t stop!

Doctor
“They?”
(ANNE nods. The DOCTOR begins writing something down in his chart.)

Anne
Sometimes…sometimes people say things about them.

Doctor
Like what? Mean things?

Anne
Yes.

Doctor
No one likes it when people hurt their feelings. (pause) Are they your friends?

Anne
(agitated) No.

Doctor
Then who are “they”?
(The DOCTOR stops writing to look back at ANNE who continues watching him.)

Anne
I don’t know. But…but they always scream at me. And sometimes I try to laugh… (nervous laughter) I laugh because it’s better than crying, because they like when I cry. And they say I should cry more.

Doctor
(The DOCTOR leans forward. ANNE peers down at her feet again.)
They bully you?

Anne
(quieter) I guess so. (a little louder) They like to see other people hurt too. It isn’t just me. So when people start saying mean things about them, they do stuff to make them sorry. I try to ignore them though. If I ignore them, I can pretend I don’t hear anything.

Doctor
What do “they” do?

Anne
Make people cry. They make people cry. So I pushed the boys to make them stop saying things, and that way…that way the boys wouldn't cry like that.

Doctor
Do you know who “they” are? Do they have names?
(ANNE shrugs and the DOCTOR looks at his chart again.)
When did they first start talking to you?

Anne
I don’t know. They do, but I don’t remember.
(ANNE begins to cry.)
They say mean things to me a lot. I tried making them stop, but they don’t.

Doctor
I understand, Anne.

Anne
(sniffling) You think I am being silly. Momma said I was “crazy”. She didn’t understand and you don’t either.

Doctor
No, Anne. Not at all. I’m here to help you. Maybe if you and I speak to them, we can understand why they –

Anne
No! They don’t care! (crying a little more) I have to do things for them or they hurt me! They did when I told them they were just my imagination! And they do it when people say they aren’t real! And…and if…if Momma hadn’t told me – told them – they don’t exist…
(ANNE becomes more upset, her breath heaving. The DOCTOR begins to stand up and go towards her. ANNE puts out a warning hand.)

Anne
You don’t believe me either! You think they don’t exist. The Jessups twins didn’t believe me when I told them. They were my friends too and when they said they thought I was…I was nuts…I had to push them because they were getting angry with my friends! (quieter) I didn’t want them to be like Momma. Momma’s gonna die…

Doctor
(The DOCTOR slowly sits back in his chair, leaning forward.
No. No, your mom will be okay. If you would like, I will have someone take you to her so you can say hello.

Anne
No, she’ll die. Because people die when they aren’t happy.

Doctor
(pausing for a moment) What are they saying now, Anne?

Anne
(ANNE stops crying, and looks at the DOCTOR. The DOCTOR clears his throat.)
They don’t like you.

Doctor
Why do you – they…?
(The DOCTOR clears his throat again, rubbing at his neck.)

Anne
Because you don’t believe in them. They want you to believe in them.
(The DOCTOR begins to cough violently, his hands going to his throat.)
You know that feeling you get…you might be getting it now. It’s when you think someone is looking at you but no one is there. And you start thinking you are hearing things…that’s them. They want you to hurt because that’s the only way you’ll listen. Momma listened, but it was too late.
(The DOCTOR begins to choke, falling off the chair and to his knees, one hand grasps the desk, the other at his throat.)
She’s going to die…just like you.
(The DOCTOR collapses, lifeless.)


END

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