Ragdoll

This is a play that I wrote for an English assessment in school. It is about a girl who is in an abusive relationship. Feedback/likes greatly appreciated

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9. Scene 9

(Calming lights come up on CHARLIE’S bedroom. In time with the lights, she wakes up gasping. Very, very quietly in the background, the defibrillator sound throughout the whole scene)

CHARLIE (Breathless, sitting up): I can’t do this anymore. I can’t take this anymore. I can’t go on.

(She pulls clothes on over her pyjamas, the same clothes as at the start of the play. The audience knows what’s coming.)

CHARLIE (Pacing): It’s easier this way. Better for everyone.

JAMES (V.O)/ CHARLIE: The world is better off without you/me

(She walks round the room for a minute, touching certain objects. Just before she leaves, CHARLIE picks up a photo on her bedside table. The audience cannot see who is in the picture. She lifts it up to her lips for a second, before putting it face down on the bed and walking out the room. Lights down.)

(Lights up. CHARLIE is stood on a very high box, symbolising the building. She is strangely calm. A crowd has formed at the bottom of the box, whispering barely audibly. CHARLIE gets her phone out of her coat pocket and calls. The ringing tone is played, but it goes to TOM’S voicemail, as before.)

TOM (V.O): Hey, you’ve reached my voicemail. I can’t answer the phone right now, but if you leave a message, I’ll call you back. (Beep)

CHARLIE (on hearing his voice, she is reduced nearly to tears, but her words are clear): Dammit, Tom. Why do you never answer your phone when I need you? (Pauses, breathes in) By the time you get this, I’ll... you’ll know by now. I just wanted to say, it’s not your fault. Don’t ever, ever blame yourself for what is about to happen. Nothing you could have done would have prevented this. I love you, Tom. Not the way you love me. I love you as the best friend anyone could ever have. Someday, years into the future, you’ll be walking down the aisle, on your wedding day, ready to get married to the perfect girl. It’s not me, but please, think of me on that day. (Pauses again)

Don’t blame James. It wasn’t his fault. If I wanted, I’d have walked out of the relationship that first date. But I loved him. It really, honestly, wasn’t his fault. Can you- can you do something for me? Can you let my parents hear this? And tell them- tell them it wasn’t their fault either. Tell them that this was what I wanted.

Goodbye, Tom.

(CHARLIE ends the call, and throws the phone down beside her. She jumps, and the building flashes behind as in the first scene.)

CHARLIE (V.O): I don’t want to hit the ground.

(Everything freezes into the same position as in scene one. TOM emerges from the crowd, as JAMES did in the first scene, wearing the same clothes as JAMES did. He does not show his face to the audience, but rather keeps his back to them. The audience believe it is JAMES.)

TOM: I- I never wanted this. I could have prevented this. This is all my fault. If I had just-

(Silence as TOM, breathing heavily, clenches his fists, back still to audience. Slowly, he turns, face in hands, as if he can’t bear to look. When he lowers his hands, the audience see it is not the face they had seen throughout the play, but TOM. He breathes heavily, looking out into the distance, before turning, knowing he will unfreeze everything.)

CHARLIE (V.O): I don’t want to die.

(CHARLIE drops. Blackout before she hits the ground. Sirens, people shouting and screams can be heard, but nothing is seen. The sounds of an ambulance pulling up are played, paramedics running round, and the sirens start up again. The screams and shouting die down to a low murmur of everyday street life. Silence falls. Three spotlights come up, SL, SR and CS. CHARLIE is CS, TOM SL and JAMES SR. They are oblivious to each other, and speak very slowly.) 

ALL THREE: Cross my heart,

                         Hope to die,

                         Stick a needle in my eye

CHARLIE:    Wait a moment,

                        I told a lie,

                       I never really wanted to die.

                    

(Lights down)

    

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