Written by Joe Janes
169 of 365
Mrs. Cullen, 40s
(Lights up on Edward, a pale, slightly overweight 13-year-old sitting on a swing in the school playground. He looks as though his mother dressed him. His beat-up Spiderman backpack is at his feet. He is squinting at the sun. Off to the side and behind, Bella and Emily appear. They have been watching him. Emily is carrying one of the Twilight vampire books. Emily whispers into Bella’s ear and they giggle.)
BELLAAre you sure?
EMILYHe has to be, Emily. He’s new, he’s a stranger, and he’s mysterious.
(Edward picks his nose and wipes it on his sweater under his arm.)
BELLAHe’s such a savage.
EMILYSee? Only a bloodthirsty animal would do that. Go talk to him.
(Emily pushes Bella. Bella turns to Emily and shoo’s her away. Emily exits.)
BELLAHey, new boy.
BELLAMy name’s Bella. It’s not my real name. My real name is Sarah, but I don’t like it. I make people call me Bella. What’s your name?
BELLAEdward,really? I just knew it. You’re all shiny.
EDWARDIt’s hot out here. My mom makes me wear a sweater.
(Bella sits in the swing next to him.)
BELLAYou moved here with your family? Do you do that a lot? Move from town-to-town? So people can’t hunt you down?
EDWARDI have special needs.
BELLAOh, so, do I, Edward.
EDWARDReally? I didn’t see you in the special needs class.
BELLAEdward. I know who you are. I know what you are. (She stands.) I want you to turn me.
(He stands and faces her. He places his hands on her shoulders; she closes her eyes, and then, turns her so she is facing the other way. He sits back down. She opens her eyes.)
BELLAHey! You’re toying with my affections. Aren’t I good enough for you? Don’t you think I’m pretty? Oh, of course. I see. You’re fighting your urges. You don’t want to be a monster. (She kneels down and takes his hands.) It’s okay, Edward. I want this. I want to be one of you.
(He opens up his backpack and hands her a safety helmet.)
EDWARDPut this on. I’m supposed to wear it all the time, but it makes me feel stupid. If you wear one, I won’t feel so bad.
(They both put on the helmets.)
BELLAI didn’t know about this part, but it makes sense. You run and jump so fast.
EDWARDThat’s what my mom says.
BELLANow will you bite me?
(Edward bites her arm.)
BELLAOW! Hey, that hurt!
EDWARDBecause I bit you.
BELLAYou’re supposed to hypnotize me first.
(He makes a wavy motion with his hand. Bella responds like she’s a little faint. She closes her eyes.)
BELLAI can feel it. Now, bite me.
(Edward looks at her and isn’t sure where to bite her. He gets down on all fours and bites her leg.)
BELLA (jumping away)Ow! That freakin’ hurts! What’s wrong with you?
(Mrs. Cullen, Edward’s mom enters.)
MRS. CULLENEdward! What were you doing?
EDWARD (runs to his mom)Mom!
MRS. CULLENWhat were you doing to this poor girl?
EDWARDShe wanted me to bite her.
MRS. CULLENNot again.
BELLASo he is a vampire.
MRS. CULLENNo, he’s not. But every teenage girl who’s read Twilight thinks he is.
BELLABut he’s pale, and he’s shiny in the daylight, and he’s broody. Speaks very few words. And he bit me, twice.
MRS. CULLENHe’s not a vampire. He’s mentally challenged.
BELLAHe’s a retard?
MRS. CULLENIf that’s what you want to call it. Looks like he’s turned you into one, too.
(Bella takes off the helmet and throws it on the ground.)
BELLAHe can’t do that, can he?
MRS. CULLENOh, sure. It’s like getting rabies. Better stay away from him, but, judging from your shiny forehead, it might be too late.
(Bella wipes seat off her brow.)
BELLAOh, no. Oh, no! Emily! Emily! He’s turned me into a retard!
(She runs off.)
EMILY (off)Ew, stay away from me!
EDWARDAre we going to have to move, again?
MRS. CULLENI don’t think so, Eddie. Just don’t bite people because they ask you to.
EDWARDOkay. I love you, Mom.
MRS. CULLENI love you, too. Let’s go find some rats to feed on.
EDWARD (clapping hands)Yay! Rats!