HAPPILY NEVER AFTER

HAPPILY NEVER AFTER

A Play by Linnea Rose

 

NARRATOR stands CS in darkness with only a DS light illuminating them.

NARRATOR

Long ago in a kingdom far, far away lived a beautiful princess–

PRINCESS’ VOICE

(Heard off-stage) Hey!

NARRATOR

–this princess was the fairest in all the land–

PRINCESS’ VOICE

(Heard off-stage) You!

NARRATOR

–with the sweetest disposition–

PRINCESS

(Stomping on stage. She is holding her dress up to reveal a dirty bottom of the dress and combat boots.) You’re telling it wrong.

NARRATOR

Excuse me?

PRINCESS

My story.

NARRATOR

Yes?

PRINCESS

You’re telling it wrong.

NARRATOR

I just started.

PRINCESS

I know. And you are already telling it wrong.

NARRATOR

How do you know?

PRINCESS

Your tone is all wrong.

NARRATOR

Huh?

PRINCESS

It’s too fantastical.

NARRATOR

How?

PRINCESS

It’s hopeful.

NARRATOR

Hopeful?

PRINCESS

Yes.

NARRATOR

Your story is not hopeful?

PRINCESS

No. This needs to represent truth.

NARRATOR

What is the truth?

PRINCESS

It’s harder for me to explain it to someone.

NARRATOR

How do you suspect we tell them? (Motions to audience) I mean they did come here for you.

PRINCESS

I know. I was thinking I could just tell my story to them.

NARRATOR

How?

PRINCESS

On stage. In front of them.

NARRATOR

Like a monologue.

PRINCESS

(Facetious) No. Like a ventriloquist act.

NARRATOR

PRINCESS

Of course like a monologue!

NARRATOR

(Looks out to audience. Looks around the house.) Alright. They’re all yours, your majesty.

PRINCESS

Thank you.

(NARRATOR exits the stage.)

Long ago in a kingdom far, far away lived a beautifully rugged princess–

(All of a sudden all the lights go out in the theatre and the house.)

Um, excuse me?

NARRATOR

Yes?

PRINCESS

What is going on? The lights. Where did they go?

STAGE MANAGER

(Enters from off-stage.) Narrator just came off-stage and said you said you wanted to do this show on your own.

PRINCESS

So why are the lights off?

STAGE MANAGER

We are heading out. It is in my contract to shut off the lights before i leave for the evening.

PRINCESS

I was still performing though.

STAGE MANAGER

Oh…I did not realize. Narrator left that part out.

PRINCESS

Is he mad at me?

STAGE MANAGER

Well, you did kind of take over his only role in the show? You know he volunteered for this role? We couldn’t find anyone else who wanted to work with you, Your Highness.

PRINCESS

What? Why not? Did you search hard enough?

STAGE MANAGER

We searched far and wide, but no one’s resume fit the matching one you sent us out with.

PRINCESS

I just have a problem with the tone he was telling the story in.

STAGE MANAGER

Why’s that?

PRINCESS

It was too hopeful.

STAGE MANAGER

What do you mean?

PRINCESS

He was making it seem like there was a happy ending.

STAGE MANAGER

Well, isn’t there one?

PRINCESS

No.

STAGE MANAGER

And why’s that?

PRINCESS

It doesn’t need one.

STAGE MANAGER

Excuse me?

PRINCESS

My story does not need a happy ending.

STAGE MANAGER

Yes it does.

PRINCESS

Who says?

STAGE MANAGER

It’s in the fairytale manual. (Scurrying to find the citation in the book)

Here. Page 437. Section I. Article 5. Clause 23.

Quote. “Every fairytale is entitled to their happy ending.” End quote.

PRINCESS

Yes, “entitled”. “Entitled” does not mean “required to”.

STAGE MANAGER

But..

PRINCESS

More importantly, I do not want one.

STAGE MANAGER

But…

PRINCESS

It’s too soon.

STAGE MANAGER

But…

PRINCESS

I’m not ready.

Beat.

 

END OF PLAY

 

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