Written by Joe Janes
91 of 365
HANDSOME MAN, 30’s
2 MEN IN COVERALLS
(Scene opens on the Handsome Man near Caroline’s bedside. She is ill, but this is not a hospital bed. It is a lush bedroom, perhaps in a mansion. She wears a crushed velvet dress and has long gray hair. She is very frail. The Handsome Man appears to be in his 30’s, fit, healthy and well dressed.)
HANDSOME MANCaroline. I have brought your favorite book to read.
CAROLINEHold my hand.
HANDSOME MANOf course.
(They do and they sit quietly for a moment.)
CAROLINEDo you remember that time in Africa?
HANDSOME MANYes. I do. We had that incompetent guide who tried to lead us across a river.
CAROLINEI missed jumping on to that rock and fell.
I had to run along the riverbank to grab you and pull you out.
CAROLINEYou were always there for me.
HANDSOME MANYou weren’t in any real danger.
CAROLINELet me see your face, again.
(The Handsome Man turns his head towards her. She lifts her hand and touches his cheek.)
CAROLINE (continuing)I don’t expect that.
HANDSOME MANWhat’s that?
HANDSOME MANI’m sorry.
CAROLINEIt’s not your fault.
HANDSOME MANI’m going to miss you.
CAROLINEI’m not buying that. You’ll forget about me.
HANDSOME MANNo. I don’t think so. Even if I did, there would be an empty spot in my memory. I would know you were there. That something was there. Something special.
CAROLINEThat spoils the dream, though, doesn’t it?
HANDSOME MANThe dream?
CAROLINEDream that I am young.
HANDSOME MANPerhaps another time.
CAROLINEDream that I am young and hold me.
(The Handsome Man holds Caroline for a moment. It is very tender. He notices something about her. He lies her back down. There is an echoing “clack” sound as harsh overhead lights flick on. Two men in coveralls enter and place Caroline in a body bag. They remove her as the rest of the scene plays out. A man, Terry, and a woman, Gene, in lab coats, enter. They walk over to the Handsome Man.)
GENEHeartbreaking, ain’t it, kid.
TERRYEver get used to that?
GENE AND HANDSOME MANNo.
GENEHe was talking to me. ...Help me with the faceplate. It needs to be a long lost girlfriend by 5 o’clock.
(She takes the remote control she’s holding and clicks it at the Handsome Man. He quickly “shuts off,” tilting his head back. Gene shows Terry how to remove the Handsome Man’s face as lights fade to black.)