Archive for March 2015
Valedictorian and Brooke enter, from opposite sides.
Valedictorian: Ah, look, the Undead Queen.
Brooke: It’s Prosperina! Where’s your minion, you bully?
Valedictorian: He’s my boyfriend, and he’s been taken. I need assistance. I believe you offered? Is the offer still standing?
Brooke: No! You’re weak! I can take you! And then I’ll be the hero!
Valedictorian: Pizza Girl will still be the hero. You’ll just be the afterthought. As always. But there’s always room for one more villain.
A beat, as Brooke considers.
Brooke (shouting): Help! Help! Someone save me!
Valedictorian: What are you doing?
Brooke: Help! I’m being attacked! I’m right over here! Someone come save me!
Valedictorian attacks her, but Brooke easily fends her off.
Brooke: Help! Help me! Help!
Maggie and Emily enter. Maggie grabs Valedictorian from behind, pinning her arms. Valedictorian screams and kicks her legs. When she stops, Emily grabs her feet.
Maggie: Hey, Proserpina –
Emily: Brooke –
Maggie: Are you okay?
Brooke: I’m good.
Emily: What now? Do we hand her over to the police?
Maggie: No, she always manages to get her away somehow. Let’s bring her into custody ourselves, and make sure she doesn’t get away this time.
They start exiting.
Emily: I’m sorry I brought a strange guy over without your permission.
Maggie: I’m sorry I cause so much trouble.
Emily: Nah, it’s fun. You’re my sister.
Maggie: Sister from another mister.
Emily: Sister from another hyster!
Brooke has watched them go. She smiles.
Brooke: I’m so good. I’m the best. One hero and one villain. One town. And now that the Valedictorian is out of the way…no one is going to stop me.
Emily is tied up and held in the middle of several force-field-emitters. She has the mind-control Machine on her head. Valedictorian and Robster are fiddling with the other Machine.
Valedictorian: The Machine is primed! All we need now the location to send our signal! Which is…the White House! What’s the address for the White House?
Robster: You don’t know?
Valedictorian: Do you? Is it 1400 or 1600?
Robster: I don’t know.
Valedictorian: Well, find out!
Robster goes to get his phone.
Emily: I know the answer. You want the White House, don’t you? I know the address to the White House. It’s 1400 Pennsylvania Avenue.
Valedictorian: Should we trust her?
Robster: We do have her tied up and at our mercy.
Valedictorian: Yes, so she’s trying to bargain with us. Watch this, I’ll trick her.
Maggie enters. She spots a bottle of chloroform and a rag sitting on a table. She picks up the chloroform and the rag, pours some chloroform on the rag, and sneaks up on Robster.
Valedictorian: Alright, fffffriend, if you tell us what we want to know, then we will set you free.
Emily: It’s 1400 Pennsylvania Avenue.
Valedictorian: Aha! I was lying! I was never going to set you free!
Chloroform takes a while to work. Robster and Maggie get into a silent, furious fight.
Emily: Hah! I was lying! It’s 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue!
Valedictorian: You can’t lie. You’re a hostage!
Emily: Then which one is it? Is it 1400 or 1600? You’ll never know.
Valedictorian: She beat me at my own game! Robster! Robster?
Robster has lost the game. So have you.
Valedictorian: So! You have defeated my boyfriend! You think you’re so clever! You can’t hurt me – I’m the one who knows how to deactivate the force fields holding your little friend hostage! In fact, if I turn the power up more, maybe it will start to get a little buzzy over there…
Maggie: Whoa whoa whoa! What do you want, Valedictorian?
Valedictorian: What do I want? I want the same thing I have always wanted! I want the world at my fingertips! I want all the power and all the money to do anything I have ever wanted! I’m going to use my power to negotiate with the President of the United States! The whole world will be at my disposal!
Maggie: Power? What power? All you have is a science lab your boyfriend pays for. You can’t even stand up in a fight!
Valedictorian: You fools place too much emphasis on physical strength.
She flips the switch or pulls the lever or whatever. Emily screams and goes limp. Maggie runs for Emily.
Valedictorian: Do you see those emitters? They emit photons at 299,792,458 meters per second!
Maggie stops and stares at Emily. Emily suddenly sits up straight.
Emily: Where am I? What is this place? Seriously, where am I?
She looks down at her body and freaks out.
Valedictorian: It worked!
Valedictorian: Mr. President, I have switched your mind with that of a feeble-minded college student! I have, in my possession, a virus that grants me access to the entire entire. Every line of code, every small bit of information, it is all mine. Now, I’m willing to offer the country a deal, Mr. President.
Emily: I’m not the president. I’m a White House intern.
Emily: I’m just an intern. They didn’t prepare me for this!
Valedictorian: No, that’s not true.
Emily: This is impossible.
Valedictorian: No…no! My brilliant Machine! My plan! It’s all useless now!
She runs offstage. This leaves Maggie and Emily alone onstage. Maggie looks back and forth between the exit and Emily, caught in indecision. She first walks one way, then another. Then she examines the force-field-emitters. Then she walks back to the exit. Then she looks at the emitters again. She holds her hand close to the field being generated, fearfully. Then, still fearful, she pushes her hand closer and closer to the force field…and then runs her hand through the whole thing. Having done so safely, she laughs.
Maggie: It’s just light.
She goes to Emily and sits her up, unties her. She taps Emily’s face a few times, but Emily fails to wake up. Maggie goes to the workstation, finds an item she finds particularly smelly, and then goes and waves it under Emily’s nose. Emily wakes up, coughing.
Maggie: Who am I talking to?
Maggie: What’s your name?
Emily: Emily…Emily Snab. We’ve been best friends since fifth grade.
Maggie: Good. Are you feeling okay?
Emily: I have just the worst headache. What happened? I dreamt I was sitting at in a cubicle. People were ordering lunch.
Maggie: I’ll explain later. The bad guy got away.
Emily: What? We have to go catch them.
Maggie: You’re not in any condition to move.
But Emily has already stood up. She stumbles a bit, but then regains her balance and starts heading for the exit. Emily and Maggie exit.
Maggie enters, frantic. She could enter into the audience, I don’t know. She enters is the point.
Maggie is asking where Emily is, calling for Emily, etc. etc. I don’t really feel like I need to write that out. She could even ask audience members where Emily is.
On the stage, Robster enters, dragging Emily, covering up her mouth so she can’t talk. Valedictorian follows, cackling. Maggie continues calling for Emily, but Emily can’t call out to her. Robster, Emily, and the Valedictorian exit.
The Mole enters.
Maggie: Mole! Hey, Mole!
Mole: I have a name, you now. It’s Maximilian Bartholomew Fieldworthington-Smythe the third.
Maggie: Have you seen Emily?
Mole: I have seen many Emilys.
Maggie: Have you seen my Emily?
Mole: Which one is that?
Maggie: Go away.
The Mole exits.
Maggie: There’s only one more place to look.
Maggie and Emily’s dorm room. Kurt is sitting on a…couch? Futon? Kurt is sitting there. Maggie enters, tired from work. She begins unloading (changing clothes) without realizing that Kurt is right there.
Maggie: Hey, I’m back. Emily, I have a serious question. You’re the best person to answer this. Should Pizza Girl have a pizza paddle as a weapon? I mean, I know I’m a delivery girl, not a pizza chef, but I helped out with making pizza tonight, and I felt so. Bangin’. You know? It was like a weapon. I should have a weapon. What do you think?
Emily (offstage): Are you trying to be the same as Pizza Boy, or do you want to be your own person?
Maggie: That’s the real question, isn’t it?
Emily (offstage): I can’t help you. You have to decide for yourself. Also, I have news.
Maggie: I know, I heard they cast Heat Shield.
Emily (offstage): And she looks so much like Heat Shield!
Maggie: I don’t think she looks like Heat Shield.
Maggie turns and sees Kurt sitting on the couch.
Emily (offstage): What do you mean? She looks so much like her. In the face. I saw on tumblr, they compared various angles of her face to different comic panels and it’s like line for line legit. It’s amazing.
Maggie: Who is this?
Emily (offstage): Oh, that’s Kurt.
Kurt (standing): Kurt Gallagher. Nice to meet you, Maggie. I’ve heard so much about you. Do you want to take a seat?
Maggie: Who are you?
Emily enters, dressed in a way that is meant to impress Kurt.
Emily: We met at the Student Union a few days ago, and he called me today to see if I wanted to hang out! He’s a professional writer.
Maggie: Do you go to school here?
Kurt: I graduated a few years ago actually.
Maggie: Then why were you hanging around at a Student Union?
Kurt: Picking up cute coeds.
He winks at Emily, who giggles.
Maggie: I see. What else do you do?
Kurt: Oh, I’m a writer. I know that Emily here is a blogger. And you’re– (Pizza Girl)
Maggie: Maggie. Emily’s best friend.
Kurt: I see.
Emily pulls Maggie aside.
Emily: I know what you’re thinking.
Maggie: Oh, good.
Emily: But don’t worry. Here’s the plan. We’ll order food, and then send you to go pick it up, and you’ll just, like, take a really really really long time to pick up the food. How does that sound?
Maggie: That’s not what I was thinking about at all.
Emily: I swear I texted you to say that I had a guy over.
Maggie checks her phone.
Maggie: Oh, yeah, yeah you did.
Emily: Then what are you so worried about?
Maggie: I don’t trust him.
Emily: Well, I trust him!
Emily goes to Kurt and hugs him.
Kurt: So, Maggie, you’re Pizza Girl.
Maggie: Who said I was?
Kurt: You did. When you walked in. How is that going?
Maggie gives Emily a look. Emily looks back, trying to say, “just go with it.”
Kurt: How did you get into superheroing, exactly? The story goes that you started out as a regular damsel in distress for Pizza Boy. Were you superheroing on the side, or did you transition from one to the next?
Maggie: I transitioned, I guess.
Kurt: What drove that decision?
Maggie: I needed a job?
Kurt: Oh, so it’s just a job for you?
Maggie: Why do you ask?
Emily: Have you seen Kurt’s blog? You should see it. I didn’t know we had a homeless population here. Kurt spent two weeks living with some homeless people just to chronicle their struggles. The photographs are beautiful. Come look, see, he has a great sense of composition.
She pulls open her laptop to get the blog.
Kurt: There’s a great underbelly in this city. The system has completely failed them and no one even sees. The bureaucrats have failed them. Families and landlords disown them. Ordinary people abuse them.
Emily: He wrote that in one of the entries.
Kurt: But no one wants to hear that. Everyone is all caught up in this superhero craze. We see superheroes in movies and now they’re in real life. I know you were talking to Emily earlier about using a paddle. Are there any other kinds of weapons that you use?
Maggie: Mostly I just sort of talk to them.
Emily: See, I found it. Look at this picture. It’s fantastic. All the busyness of the graffiti and the sleeping bags leads your eye to this corner, where the subject looks out over the drainage system. It’s fantastic.
Maggie: So you hang out with homeless people when you’re not picking up cute coeds?
Kurt: Well, I did, for this one assignment.
Kurt: Oh…I mean…
Maggie: You were assigned to talk to homeless people? That’s a weird assignment. What was your next assignment? Was it to get an inside scoop on Pizza Girl?
Emily: You’re a journalist? I thought you were just a blogger.
Kurt: They can be both. A journalist is just a blogger who actually gets paid. I have student loans.
Maggie: Aren’t you supposed to get permission from a subject before you interview them? We had to learn how to make waivers that one semester we studied folklore. You didn’t ask.
Kurt: No one will tell anyone anything about this mysterious Pizza Girl. Your school won’t comment. Cheezy Pizza won’t comment. You’re one big gigantic mystery and whoever cracks the case and lets the world know could stand to make…a lot. A lot of money.
Maggie: You didn’t ask permission!
Emily: You only cared about Maggie? Everything is about Maggie! You just used me to get to Maggie!
Emily starts to run offstage.
Maggie: Emily wait!
Emily (voice cracks): My feelings are very raw right now.
Kurt: So if I get a waiver, would you sign it?
Maggie shoots him a disgusted look and exits. Then she reenters.
Maggie: This is my dorm room. You have to leave.
Kurt exits. Then Maggie exits.
I told the elephant story four times yesterday. I’m going to have to get used to telling that story, due to the whole engaged-without-a-ring thing. I called Mom as I was getting out of work. I was very very nervous about it. What if she was, for some weird reason, angry? But Mom was delighted.
“Now that that’s out of the way,” she said after giving me congratulations, “Any plans for the wedding?”
“I’m thinking late December or early January,” I said.
“Why not New Years?”
Mom went on and on about how much fun it would be to celebrate on New Years. Then she said, “What sort of venue are you thinking about?”
I said, “I want to get married surrounded by trees, but I don’t think that’s possible in the middle of winter. So I was thinking about a greenhouse.”
(clearly this is my new favorite reaction image)
Apparently she didn’t get a lot of work done for the rest of the afternoon, because she was too busy researching greenhouses as wedding venues. She also thinks we should go with green as a dominant color, but I disagree. I told Lacey as much, and she said that purple might work. I’m thinking gray and blue, but James thinks the colors might not work together.
Mom has already picked out a potential venue, and we’ll be checking it out on Monday. I told her that it didn’t necessarily have to be a greenhouse. I just wanted it to be in the woods and for there to be lots of windows. “Like that restaurant in the forest we used to go to a lot,” I said. “The one in Maryland.”
(all the time now)
Apparently she and Grampa have always wanted to host an event there.
But the next step is to figure out who all we’re inviting. I made an initial list last night. It’s about 80 people. I have no idea if that’s workable or not.
One set of James’ many Aunts and Uncles was in town last night, so the family had a get-together at a family restaurant in Durham. It was so clearly meant to be the way we announced our engagement to the family. James waited until dinner was almost over before he made the announcement.
“Finally,” said Deb, my future mother-in-law.
When I explained why I didn’t have a ring on, James’ aunt Marcia said, “Well don’t have too untraditional of a wedding now!”
James and I were surprised, because we are two of the most traditional people that ever existed. I just…don’t like wearing rings.
Sunday was our fifth anniversary together, in case people are wondering why James proposed on March 22 rather than a more typical day, like February 14 or January 1. I had had an inkling that he was going to do it. He’s said, a few times, “My mom will probably give us the down payment on a house as a wedding present.” (James’ mother is rich) Sometimes, when we’re discussing the future townhouse, he’s said that we were probably only going to be there for the eleven-month lease and that we might be moving to a house we own next. Not subtle.
Other things, like a few months ago, he was talking about rings. Was there any kind of jewelry that I would be interested in? And I gave my usual spiel about how awful diamond companies are. Yeah, but there are other kinds of rocks. Are there any I like? I replied no. No matter how significant or sentimental a piece of jewelry is, I’m going to forget about it and stop wearing it after a day or two. Was there anything that I could think of that I would want in lieu of a ring?
James is just not a subtle man.
In January, I was looking at a particular toy elephant online that I had had my eye on for a good long while.
James asked why I was staring at it, and I explained that I would buy it, but it was $115 and there were much better things to spend that kind of money on.
About a month ago he began to talk openly about both of us needing to have March 22 off. I duly requested the 22 off, and then asked him what sort of plans he had for that day. He said he didn’t have any. He just wanted the day off.
I suggested that maybe we visit a restaurant downtown. But all of the nice restaurants in the area are either closed on Sundays, or only open for lunch.
We ended up hosting Game Night as usual. Only the three regulars showed up, Matt, Gary, and Linus. We played a few games and I lost horribly at two of them (Whitewater and Wise and Otherwise), but I won Kalimambo the second time. “Come on, guys,” James said as Gary and Linus openly discussed shoving my raft into the rocks, “I need Kelsey to be happy tonight. Then, when they left and I started cleaning up a bit, James disappeared into the bedroom and reappeared with a suspiciously toy-elephant-sized box.
I delightedly opened the box. We worked together to free the elephant from his chains (I felt like a Kyoshi warrior in Appa’s Lost Days, the episode of Avatar we watched a few days ago). I went and got my Elephant Fighter Attachment from the bedroom so that attachment and main item could be together at last.
Truly a thing of beauty.
As I worked to get all the elephant warriors to sit correctly on the harness, James reappeared with a small stuffed purple elephant. It was the last of the elephants that James’ parents had collected at various hotels in Taiwan (all hotels in Taiwan apparently come with elephants).
“This is also for you,” he said.
I laughed and said that it was weird that he was always giving me those, since my interaction with them had been to throw them at his head when his father was sick.
James told me that I had been distracting him and showing him affection, which was helped him during those dark days. So maybe they were more important to him, but he important thing was that he wanted to marry me, would I marry him.
Some great quotes I’ve encountered recently:
Leisure without literature is death — Seneca the Younger
I can conceive of no greater mistake, more disastrous in the end to religion if not to society…than of trying to make charity do the work of justice — William Jewett Tucker, as quoted by Deborah Cadbury in her book Chocolate Wars
In the end, it’s just water and beans — Meagan, my new manager (isn’t everything, though)
Linus: I have to go to work at 3:00 in the morning.
Matt: You’re one to complain! You’re chugging down all that coffee.
Linus: It’s decaf. I never drink caffeine.
Kelsey: You know that decaf still has caffeine though, right? Starbucks decaf has about as much caffeine as a regular coffee at McDonald’s.
Linus, Matt, James: Ohhhhhhhhh
Matt: Some real brand loyalty there!
So I got a new job at Starbucks. Between training at 5:00 at Starbucks, and working nine-hour shifts at Harris Teeter, I am absolutely exhausted. James pointed out that I’m “too tired to be depressed” and thus my current state is a mixed blessing. The last few days, I’ve showered as soon as I’ve gotten home, then eaten dinner, then read until I fell asleep on the couch.
I don’t want anyone to think I’ve disappeared off the face of the earth, especially given my last few posts. I want you guys to know that I am tired but optimistic.