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Clarisse, at night, with the Lump
[A dim stage, barely lit enough to reveal a tree and a lump, suspiciously shaped like a human.]
(A voice is heard offstage) "Matthew? Matthew, are you here?"
(Clarisse walks on slowly, covered head to toe in a cape with the hood drawn up. She carries a duffel clutched to her chest and peers into the audience.)
Clarisse: Matthew, this isn't funny.
(she turns and begins to walk backwards hesitantly.)
Clarisse: Matthew? ... This is ridicu -
(she trips over the lump and lets out a shriek as she stumbles. Lights come up just enough to reveal the lump is in fact a male human.)
Clarisse: What the - Matthew? Are you SLEEPing?
(She crouches closer and leans over the face of the lump.)
Clarisse: I know I'm late, but my father was home late from his club, and ... Matthew?
(She reaches out to touch the face of the lump, then gasps and falls back, the duffel flying away in her haste.)
Clarisse: Omigod, not Matthew. Omigod.
(she scrambles to her feet.)
..... Are you dead?
(the lump does not reply.)
......You seem dead.
(she kicks him. Nothing.)
.......Well thats great. (retrieving her duffel) Matthew is nowhere to be seen and I stumble across a dead body the night we should be running away together, madly in love newlyweds.
Clarisse: (not hearing) I'll only wait another few minutes. Maybe no one will notice I was gone. Oh, what am I saying, it could be nearly dawn for all I know. Mrs. Henrit up, the maids up - Julie will surely be up, and she'll come into my room -
(Clarisse begins to act the part of her sister)
Clarisse/Julie: (in a singsong chant) Good morning, dear sister!
Lump: Good morning.
Clarisse/Julie: (still not hearing) Let me just open the drapes. Isn't it a wonderful morning, especially after such a chilly night! I'll just bet Mother will allow us to take a picnic with the Jacobsen boys this afternoon, I do.
Clarisse: And then, of course, she'll notice I'm missing.
Clarisse/Julie: Oh my! Where could Clarisse be?
Clarisse: And of course, my note.
Lump: Oh, a note.
Clarisse/Julie: (simultaneously) Oh! A note! 'Dearest Julie,' isn't that sweet? 'Dearest Julie, by now you have noticed I'm gone. Matthew and I have left to live as man and wife, and there is not a thing anyone can do about it. I know mama disliked him ever so much, but I can not spend another day, nor my entire life, looking at the face of the youngest Jacobsen, I couldn't. Love always, Your Clarisse.'
(The lump sits up and Clarisse screams.)
Lump: Do you mean Nile Jacobsen?