GFD: Shadows From The Past

ACT ONE

Prequel – Navy Pier

The play starts with the curtains open and we see a 3am setting. The stage is dimly lit; USL and USR on our “stage bridge” are two lampposts which light the stage. At the back of the stage in the “arch” of the bridge is an anchor. At the front of the stage, there is a very dim spotlight lighting the stage. Sat inside the anchor is Taryn. He is unseen. There is a set of stage stairs USL.
A Dark Shadow appears from the side of the stage. It creates its own light, it is defensive and yet offensive, it has full knowledge, the costuming will be of a full black nature with sunglasses with black/browned skin. He walks with a cloak, never revealing his face to us. The actor who plays the role of Comicality also plays the role of Richie in this production. His voice has a raspy tone to it, almost deathly yet it is sweet and welcoming. It is the voice of our key note character, Comicality.

Comicality To fear death, is to fear life itself. I am writing this as a privilege. And as a duty. The dead are most welcoming.. my time is short.. remember my voice.. you may meet me.. you may not.. its all part and parcel of the “Comicality” Gig. Fearing Death won’t ever save you.. Fearing Light could save you. But being forever afraid of darkness.. will never help you to see the final light.. the dawn… Vampires. Do they exist? It is up to you.. but if you were confronted by one what would you do? Would you run? It would not help? Would you scream.. no you wouldn’t do that.. Would you beg for mercy? I believe you would.
He Pauses
Silence. Nothing. Darkness. Forever locked in darkness… the only to defeat the darkness is to face yourself like you have never faced before. Change your fate. Change your fears. Only the hidden truth is locked within the shadows of the past… Adieu. My friends. We shall meet again.. I can sense it…

Comicality exits slowly backwards, he bows and runs..

Prologue – The Curtain

As the audience are prepared for the play to start … The Curtain… Unexpectedly Falls. A Projection is made onto the curtain; a faded and distorted image… a vision of eternal confusion and eternal darkness. Pause. The Projection Changes… a Murky Chicago Street with a small boy being dragged along the street by his father… the boy pauses… he refuses to move… the father turns and strikes him. A flash of light. A Red light appears from the audience and is projected onto the screen giving us a more disturbing image… This is a build up of the lighting for the evening…
The screen changes to a clearer view of the original projection, we now can see the difference between text and background. The projection changes again to a video inside of a dark house in the suburbs of Chicago. A Woman, obviously a Mother by the way she is dressed is drunk on the floor… A Young 14 Year Old Boy Enters…

Mother Ju… Just… Mummy went a bit far… She hiccups

The boy just runs up the stairs and as he turns at the top of the stairs we have another flash… The right hand light shines lightly, as with the previous light.
The projection changes to our original projection, it is clearer and we can now see the word “Daylight”. There is another change in projection… A 14 year old boy, the same 14 year old as we saw before… walking towards a dark pier at midnight.
The picture now changes to an over the shoulder shot of a boy with long hair, presumably the character of Taryn. He is staring at our 14 year old boy standing at the end of the Pier…

Taryn (He whispers) Justin…

A large blinding flash of light… An even larger one… A Black out…
Pure Silence.
After a few seconds the picture reappears, fully clear…
“GONE FROM DAYLIGHT: SHADOWS OF THE PAST”.
The picture has some Verzpertillian writing under Gone From Daylight but this is to be revealed later on.

SCENE ONE – Navy Pier

The curtain raises to a gauze setting (The gauze having been lowered while the projections were being seen by the audience and we have our first voiceover moment..) Justin appears and stands by the railing at the front..

Justin V/O The whole wide world is full of temptation.. And I’ve sacrificed myself to those temptations. I believe that 3 AM is the darkest time of night by far, the perfect balancing point between sunset and sunrise. Not too many people roaming the streets, not too many cars passing by, just uninterrupted silence. The ultimate perfection in the darkness of night. So many times… So many times I’ve been called here. I swear I have been crying.. but I know.. the emotion it is gone. The act of crying is a waste to me at this point, Death is my only escape. At 14 you may think that is a bit drastic, but you should see the things I have to put up with…
People say I’m a dork, just a kid, it doesn’t matter what I said.. I was labelled as a pretty boy.. and that hurt… that hurt so much..
This is the very last piece of control I have left… I’d rather die on my own terms than get sucked up into the thing we call society..
Actually, I have one friend, one close friend who I love dearly.
Justin stands and begins to walk thinking…
Projection 1 : A Photograph of a young boy in a hospital bed. The picture is initially faded but as Justin speaks the picture becomes clearer.
His name is Richie, he is my age, and one of the sweetest most adorable people to ever walk this Earth. But like me, our beloved Lord and Savior decided to deal him a bad hand in life. He was stuck in a hospital, struggling with terminal cancer. Since he was first admitted, I’ve watched him change and deteriorate into something else. He was always happy to see me visit, and he always had a warm smile waiting for me, no matter how bad he felt.
I held back every possible tear when I saw him, I was strong for him, and he was strong for me. But I knew one day it would be over. No more hospital visits, no more long hugs, no more long matches of video games on his room’s TV set. Soon he’d be gone. This beautiful person would be gone forever.
The Projection begins to dim once more as each of the words is spoken..
he’d be leaving all the perverts, deviots, killers, rapists, thieves and every other kind of low life scum ever to inhabit the Earth behind.
Projection 2 : Close up on Richie. The boys eyes are hopeful but his soul is weakening. “he wouldn’t be around forever” is the cue for the picture to fade
Richie was my best friend, but he wouldn’t be around forever, and the way I feel tonight… I envy him..
Justin walks to CSL. As the following starts a new projection.
I have nowhere to turn to, no one to lean on.. as if my life wasn’t bad enough , I have recently come to terms with myself. I was 10. 4 years ago now.
Projection 3: A park and a group of boys playing tackle football.
We were playing in the park with some friends, tackle football. That’s when I saw him. This boy, this 12 year old boy, with light brown medium length hair and ice blue eyes. He was so slim, his hips were almost serpentine, and when he took off his shirt to play, I practically fell in love with him on the spot. I knew I was wrong. Boys don’t like boys, that’s just the rules of the game.
Projection 4 : A Pile On. Justin at the front with a visible kiss of “The Boy”
At one point they all decided to have a pile on, and I was actually on of him. There was so much confusion that he probably didn’t even notice that I had done it, but while everyone was laughing and screaming and tussling about…I bent down and started kissing his chest. Delicately, secretively, I enjoyed myself. But when the pile on was over, and the heap started to settle, I had to get off of him, and I knew that this was as far as I was ever going to get with another boy.
The projection fades slower than ever before.
I felt hurt, sad, rejected, almost sick. I just didn’t understand why. Why me? What did I do to deserve this? Was I cursed to live this way forever? This would turn out to be a very lonely life indeed, a secret one that would boil inside of me until the day I died. This day.
I’m sure… I’ll do it.. I’m so sure…

A Voice from the background. It is taryn he doesn’t move till he sees Justin react to his voice. He has a very hazy voice.

Taryn You going to do it or not..

Justin looks over his shoulder and sees the figure of Taryn and taryn takes a few steps forward.

Justin What did you say?

Taryn Are you going to do it, or aren’t you? I figured from the way you were staring at the lake like that, you were either going to jump in, or part it like the Red Sea. Either way, I’d get to see quite a show..

Justin approaches Taryn and Taryn’s eyes somehow begin to glow. Justin freaks and
Backs off..

Did I scare you?

Justin (Sarcastically) No, not at all. What are you doing out here? Shouldn’t you be at home or something?

Taryn Shouldn’t YOU? I was here first. In fact, I’ve been coming here for a very long time. I’ve been watching you take the long walk up and down this dock for months now. But it looked like you were really going to jump this time. I wanted front row seats.”
Wondering if you should kick my ass first, huh? Might not be such a good idea. I can be pretty tough when I want to be.

Taryn Grins , seen by all even in the darkness. Taryn approaches Justin from under the bridge showing finally the audience and Justin a clear view of him. He is a young boy, with long hair, distinct thin features, quite attractive although there is something different about him. They both come close to the front of the stage.

Justin If you’ve been watching me all this time…then why didn’t you say something before?

Taryn You looked as though you didn’t want to hear it. Maybe now you do. What’s your name?”

Justin Its Brian.

Taryn No it isn’t. So I’ll ask again….What’s your name?”

Justin It’s…it’s Justin.

Justin tries to give Taryn the eye , Taryn doesn’t shy away he looks at him directly in the eye.

Taryn (Sticking Out Hand) Much better. My name is Taryn. Pleased to make your acquaintance, Justin.

Justin shakes Taryn’s hand.

You really don’t want to jump, do you?

Justin Yes I do. That’s what I came here to do tonight before you interrupted.

Taryn Let’s be serious Justin, if you really wanted to jump you would have done so without stopping to think about it. Ask yourself this…did I really stop you, or did you stop yourself?
A Pause. Justin has no idea what to say.
One of the many things I’ve learned in life Justin, is that you should never act on any impulse that requires hesitation. Either you do it or you don’t. That’s all there is to it.
Taryn moves a step closer to Justin. They are so close to the edge now, Taryn could just push him off…. Justin sits on the edge..

Justin Its quite funny.. a suicidal person trying to survive.

Taryn literally steps over Justin his leg wrapped around him.

Taryn I can help you Justin. You just have to let me do it

Taryn outstretches his hand. He leans forward. Justin jerks away. Taryn smiles and helps him up.

Taryn Come here. Let me show you something.

Taryn drags Justin to the back of the stage and gets him to sit on the anchor spot.

Look at it isn’t it beautiful.

Justin Isn’t what beautiful?

Justin looks around and then Taryn pulls him to face him.

Taryn All of it, the whole picture. You look at the water and you see death, but I look at it, and I see life. Just think, these waves have been in constant motion, never ceasing to move and flow, for hundreds of years. And it will continue to move until the end of time.
Justin goes to speak but Taryn stops him with his finger..
You have so many questions, Justin. Can’t you just enjoy the moment?

Justin Look…it was nice meeting you and all, Taryn. But I should really get going now.

He stands and starts to walk off.

Taryn Sure…so you could come back tomorrow and try to kill yourself again? I understand, you’ll need your sleep.

Justin turns enraged by Taryn’s comment. He walks towards him..

Justin LOOK! You don’t know anything about me okay? You don’t know all the things that I’ve had to put up with over the last few years of my life!”

Taryn You’re right, I don’t. And if you don’t mind, I would rather not. I’ve got my own problems to deal with, I don’t have time to force you to talk about yours. But if you DO want to share, I can lend you a friendly ear.

Justin I don’t want your help! I live a shitty life and I’ve done everything I can to make it right! Nothing works, this world is made of pain and sorrow, and my life is just meaningless at this point. So back off!

Taryn Awww…poor baby. Justin doesn’t like his life, so he’s just going to throw it away like yesterdays trash. He’s had a few hard times, a few ordeals to face, and now he’s fed up and he’s going to kill himself to teach them all a lesson. Am I right?

Justin Shut up! Okay! Just shut the fuck up and leave me alone!

Justin shoves Taryn and runs off and gets to the side of the stage.

Taryn (Speaking calmly and slowly) Remember what I told you Justin? If it requires hesitation, you simply aren’t ready to make that move.. It’s not so bad you know…your situation. You’re alive. You should be proud of that, not regretful. Life isn’t about how much pain you’ve suffered, it’s about how you get past it, and how you overcome it in the end.

Justin You don’t understand… I’ve lost everything Taryn…everything

Taryn walks over and stares at him.

Taryn So you’re going to lose your life too? Does that make sense?

Justin Nobody in this world cares about me except my mom and my best friend. One is an alcoholic and one is terminally ill.

He walks over and sits on the anchor. Taryn turns and walks slowly towards him, stalking him with every step.

Taryn If nobody cares about you Justin, then what would your death prove? Do they deserve the pain you are feeling? Lets face it, the people you love should be your focus. The rest are all extras in a move that YOU are directing. Screw the rest of them… You don’t know how wrong you are…

Justin I’ve just…I just…I’ve lost my will to go on any more.

Justin buries his head in his hands.

Taryn You haven’t lost your will, Justin. You’ve just lost your perspective on what’s good about life.

Justin There’s nothing good about my life.

Justin sinks deeper into his state of depression.

Taryn Not YOUR life, life in general. You know what life is Justin? It’s possibilities. ENDLESS possibilities. If one doesn’t work out, you just take another. If ten don’t work out, there’s ten more to take their place. Just because we don’t see them all at once, or don’t want to make the effort to reach them, or aren’t patient enough to wait for the time to be right, doesn’t mean those possibilities don’t exist. You take a million things for granted every single day, and you don’t even know it. Things like a good laugh, a sweet memory, the smell of movie popcorn …or even a good sunrise, Have you ever seen the sunrise, Justin?

Justin (Perks up a little) No…never.

Taryn You know, it rises right over there, right on the horizon in front of your very eyes. You can actually see it grow out of the lake. It’s soooo beautiful The sun rises every single day, Justin. EVERY…SINGLE….DAY. But how many do you actually get to see? 20 or 30? 50 if you’re a fanatic about it. Out of all those lovely sunrises, we only take time to notice a few of them. And all that glorious beauty is wasted, wasted on a world full of people who couldn’t be bothered to see it for what it is. We spend so much time concentrating on our problems and our petty little conflicts…that the truly wonderful aspects of life pass right by us. And once it’s gone…we whine and complain about how we missed out. Feeling sorry for ourselves while even more beauty passes us by again. It’s and endless circle that you just have to be willing to break…
Taryn jumps up and has a slight realisation.
What time is it?

Justin It’s…about 4:30 according to my watch.

Taryn Shit. I’ve gotta go dude.

Taryn walks up the steps and heads to go.. but turns..

Make me a promise Justin…tell me you won’t jump.

Justin I promise just go..

Taryn I can’t tell you what to do Justin, the decision is yours and yours alone. But choose life dude, it’s so much better than any easy fix.

Justin No matter what happens Taryn, it’s not your fault, okay?

Taryn We all have our secrets Justin, believe me. I can help you, but you have to make me a promise. And you have to stick to it no matter what…okay?

Justin Go ahead.

Taryn Go back to your life Justin. Just for one week. Make an effort to see the good things in the world. Take time to appreciate everything you have, everything you could have. Give life a chance Justin, don’t give up on it just yet.

Justin And…what if I don’t find the good in it?

Taryn …If in seven days of a TRUE effort, you don’t find what it is you need to make your life mean something……then meet me here on the docks. One week from today, same time, 3 AM. Then I can help you.

Taryn runs off..

Justin But what can YOU do? Taryn? TARYN?

The lights fade and our set parts revealing a classroom set. It is the end of the scene.

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