Castles 2

A Year of Reprieve

An Amateur Play in (Two) Acts
by
Researcher Talloran


Copyright © 452381, by Researcher Talloran
rating: +38+x



Cast of Characters

Researcher Talloran: Foundation Researcher of indeterminate age eternally punished.
The Being: The one who is correct.
Doctor Hikari Yamada: Medical professional at Site-??. Hates being called "nurse".
Doctor Simon Glass: Head of Psychology. Had two appointments with Talloran.
Paul McGann: The Eighth Doctor.












Scene
Beach-side resort.

Time
Data not found.



I-1-1

ACT I

Scene 1

SETTING: We are on the balcony of the second-floor of a lovely, expensive beach-side resort. The weather is perfect for relaxing outside; at 35°C (or 95°F), there is no reason not to get some fresh air. The wind is, at worst, incredibly light. Seagulls are out on the sand, and the ocean is still. We see our main star, RESEARCHER TALLORAN, lying in a soft chair underneath a parasol. Meanwhile, DOCTOR HIKARI YAMADA has opted directly for sunbathing. Despite the weather, both are in their professional work clothes. If one didn't know better, they'd think that it was colder than it actually is. PAUL MCGANN is on the beach, lying down on the sand and tanning.
AT RISE: RESEARCHER TALLORAN awakens with a startle, with it being the first time in 452,380 years that a new cycle began in a place not born of darkness. The area is unfamiliar; when was the last time TALLORAN ever been to anything like a hotel, let alone a beach? To the right is someone real familiar; DOCTOR HIKARI YAMADA. It doesn't take YAMADA long to notice TALLORAN, now shuffling around the balcony in a nervous sweat. She looks up from her Wired June 2017 issue and chuckles.

YAMADA

You're finally up and about. You've been conked out for such a while, I thought maybe you'd have Sleeping Beauty Syndrome.

(TALLORAN continues to pace around, looking frantically over the area.)

TALLORAN

Hey, hey hey hey hey hey, w-where are we exactly? This is different. It's way, way different from before. Are… are, crap, are you —



I-1-2

YAMADA

Relax. The Being can't follow you here. You managed to get some breathing room.

(TALLORAN continues to pace around, looking frantically over the area.)

TALLORAN

B-but I don't understand. What's —

YAMADA

If I knew the answers here, so would you.

(YAMADA takes out a lantern from underneath her chair and starts to light it. TALLORAN continues to pace around, looking frantically over the area.)

Right now, I'm just an extension of your memories and emotions. I guess you always thought highly of me, huh? Calm under pressure, even when shit hits the fan, the Foundation ideal. You definitely wanted that. Maybe that's why I'm here?

TALLORAN

But, but… I just don't understand. It's… it's bright out here, and happy, it's gonna get fucked isn't it?

(YAMADA smiles, finishing the process of lighting the lantern. She gets up and gestures to the door of the resort.)

YAMADA

Try and relax. It gets dark in there, so you'll need to just trust me and follow closely so you don't get lost. We have to move fast in there.

(TALLORAN halts, looking towards the inside of the resort. Now that it was mentioned, it is incredibly dark in there. Before TALLORAN can get more confused, YAMADA grabs TALLORAN's arm and walks over to the door. With that forceful determination, even if the world isn't making sense, an obvious, if small, look of relief spreads over TALLORAN's face.)

TALLORAN

I… sure. Only as long as you explain to me what is happening with all of this.



I-1-3

YAMADA

I will. Just do us a favor. The moment I open the door, close your eyes and imagine this is Site-118. And if you must open your eyes, don't look up at me.

(Before TALLORAN can say anything, YAMADA opens the door. Immediately, an overwhelming sense of darkness and fluidity floods the area, and TALLORAN is forced not to look. Site-118 starts to come to mind. TALLORAN remembers; that was where ████████ last worked. Shit, THE BEING'S claws are scratching the eyelids. Site-118. It was a small enough site that it was easy to map out the area. That's right… down the stairs. Then take two lefts. Go down another flight of stairs. Claws have reached the cornea. Circle around behind the stairs, then open the door in front. You take one more right, and that's how you get to…)

YAMADA

We're outside again. Open your eyes now.

(TALLORAN'S eyes open. It's a starry night.)

(BLACKOUT)
(END OF SCENE)



I-2-4

ACT I

Scene 2

SETTING: It's a clear, starry night. The resort is behind RESEARCHER TALLORAN and DOCTOR HIKARI YAMADA, and a path in a sparse forest stretches outwards.
AT RISE: TALLORAN is in awe of the surroundings. It's been ages since there was such a peaceful moment as this one. Back when reality still existed, if one were to be generous. YAMADA waits a few seconds for TALLORAN to get a bearing for the setting before walking forward, dragging TALLORAN along with her with the lantern in the other hand.

YAMADA

See, isn't it fine?

TALLORAN

Yeah… I guess it was. It's uh. Wow. Shit. It's really nice out here, isn't it. Is this still a trap?

YAMADA

No. If it was a trap, you'd have been caught in it already. We have a bit of a walk to get to what I want to show you, so let's talk some.

TALLORAN

I guess. You're not The Being, but what are you? Why is everything here all safe and cozy? How come —

TALLORAN YAMADA
I still remember you? You still remember me?

YAMADA

Hah! Thought you'd say that. I mean, you do have to keep in mind, I am only an extension of you in here. You must remember enough about me though, if I'm here now.

TALLORAN

So you… aren't actually Dr. Yamada then. For certain.

YAMADA

Yeah, though I can't say that's a bad thing. I'm sure the real real Yamada would hate to be in the position we're in right now.

TALLORAN

But wait!

(TALLORAN slips out of YAMADA's grasp and looks at her quizzically.)

You don't… you don't fully act like her. She was… shit. I can't remember that well. She wasn't as dry though.

(YAMADA pauses to think of an answer. Only the sound of crickets float by the two, before all she is able to do is shrug.)



I-2-5

YAMADA

Not sure! I guess it's because you can't remember me well enough to fully capture my personality. How do you think I acted then?

TALLORAN

More uh… playful? Sparkly? Yeah. I think so anyway.

YAMADA

Alright then. Just —

(Immediately, YAMADA spins once on her heels.)

— like —

(After spinning, she lands on her feet and points her finger in TALLORAN'S face.)

— that?

(TALLORAN snorts.)

TALLORAN

A little bit too peppy, but in the right ballpark.

(The two share some laughs as they continue to walk on, conversation having died down a substantial degree. It's only a full minute before TALLORAN speaks up again.)



I-2-6

Why is it that I'm safe here? What makes this different from all the other times The Being got to me?

YAMADA

You'll have to think about what was different from usual in the past couple years then! Surely you must have an idea, O Grand Researcher Talloran.

TALLORAN

That's just it though. You obviously don't remember because I can't remember. I don't know why The Being would let up on me now when it never has. At least, I don't think it ever has. Maybe this thing has happened before, and I can't remember that! Fuck, why does any of this happen?

(There is a short pause as they approach a grand, scenic gate by the end of the path.)

YAMADA

Maybe it's because you came to an understanding about something. You didn't just spend the last few hundred thousand years in vain. I'm not sure what you finally understood, but it had to have been something, right? That's the only thing I can think of. And maybe that's why we're coming here. Do you remember now, where we are?

(YAMADA sets the lantern down and opens the gate with both of her hands, motioning for TALLORAN to go in.)

TALLORAN

I definitely would have remembered this giant gate. I guess the forest and its path are familiar… shouldn't it be ladies first?

(YAMADA smiles and continues to motion. TALLORAN breathes in deeply, exhaling with as much force. TALLORAN sighs, tenses up, and heads through the gate.)



I-2-7

(The dirt path quickly transitions into one made of stone. As TALLORAN continues on it, a look of familiarity and shock starts to appear, eyes opening wide. YAMADA follows behind, quickly keeping pace. The two eventually reach their destination, and TALLORAN quickly runs over to it; a calm, quiet pond.)

Oh… oh wow. How serene. It's still here…

YAMADA

Mmhmm! Spick and span, isn't it? No ducks out here, unfortunately. I really wish they came by more often. Once in a while was never enough.



I-2-8

TALLORAN

That's right. Yeah. Yeah! The one time I was here, we both came together on assignment. And, and we stayed here for the full week. This place was… real nice. Why didn't we get assigned to it more often?

YAMADA

I don't know. You were always so stressed, why didn't you come here more often? Also, I'm not exactly —

TALLORAN

Please don't remind me of that. I just need this bit of joy right now.

(TALLORAN splashes the pond, sighing.)

That also explains the gate; I remember you showing me that once.

(YAMADA sits down by TALLORAN, dipping her feet in the water.)

YAMADA

Ah, how nice. You remember working with me, right? You got to hear my patients express gratitude for my work… heh, they even called me something real particular around you. You remember, right?

TALLORAN

Yeah. "My sunshine." How endearing. You were some people's reason for living. That's an amazing quality in and of itself.



I-2-9

Somehow, I forgot about this… I didn't think I'd be finding the pond here of all places. But wait… I remember. When we were here, we got interviewed by… uh, by…

YAMADA

Dr. Glass, wasn't it?

TALLORAN

Yeah, but I didn't see him when we walked in. I don't even know if I can see more than one of my own manifestations of people I know.

(TALLORAN looks up at YAMADA before realizing someone is sitting on the bench behind her. The figure's back is to everyone. He waves his hand and calls out.)

GLASS

Hey! Long time no see, Talloran.

(BLACKOUT)
(CURTAIN)
(END OF SCENE)
(END OF ACT)




II-1-10

ACT II

Scene 1

SETTING: The duck pond.
AT RISE: TALLORAN, YAMADA, and GLASS are all on a bench overlooking the pond. The perspective has shifted now, as everything but the bench have moved around to accommodate the three overlooking the pond. While GLASS and TALLORAN are in full-focus, YAMADA starts to loose transparency and clarity.

GLASS

Funny that you remember me better than Yamada. If she were here, that'd be real insulting to her, wouldn't it?

(GLASS takes a bite of an apple. Despite the apple and GLASS appearing solid, GLASS phases through the apple. Crunching noises can be heard as GLASS continues to chew, throwing the apple in the pond for the ducks.)

YAMADA

I still feel insulted, you know! Hmmph. I guess I get it though.

TALLORAN

Huh?

GLASS

Well, people tend to remember the negatives much better than the positives. That's just how our brains adapted to survive. You may have been great friends with Dr. Yamada, but the two times you've spent with me is easier to remember specifics for. We didn't exactly talk about the happiest of stuff, right?

TALLORAN

I guess not? I guess if I'm seeing the Head of Psychology himself, then it's very much not a happy case.

YAMADA

What did you two talk about anyhow? That's not something the calm and steadfast side of you would be dealing with.

TALLORAN

I remember the first session for sure. It was about the uh… the roughness I've had dealing with anomalies. No one tells you this when you first join, but you're just so likely to end up traumatized and messed up. I thought I got through my first couple years fine before they found me having a meltdown by some humanoid's cell.



II-1-11

GLASS

Do you remember the anomaly?

TALLORAN

Would that even matter, really?

GLASS

No wonder I couldn't figure out which one that was just now. And the second session?

TALLORAN

Hey, wait… if I remember it, that means you would, so why don't you say it?

(TALLORAN stares down at the ground, frustrated, as GLASS gets up to pick another apple off of a nearby tree.)

GLASS

For patients undergoing psychotherapy, it helps them process stuff a lot easier when they explain what they are feeling or remember of events. A manifestation is still just a manifestation, but you are you yourself. So you should say it.

TALLORAN

You're no fun.

GLASS

I'm only fun on my off-days.

(GLASS bites into the apple.)

TALLORAN

It was… about my teenage years and young adulthood. I had a real rough time surviving before I got picked up by the Foundation. It's tough. But it's hard to remember that many details about it. I just know quite a bit of it was my own fuck-ups.



II-1-12

GLASS

Like?

TALLORAN

Again, hard to remember, but… not taking the chance to move houses when I had the finances, or not sticking up for myself when it would have saved me jobs. Shit like that.

GLASS

Maybe The Being is eating up your negative emotions. That could be likely, especially if you're at the point now where you're unstressed enough that you can spend time here and enjoy it. I mean, relative to everything else.

TALLORAN

Fuck, I don't like that. That'd mean that being hurt for all this time is supposed to be a positive!

GLASS

And to you, that'd be wholly negative, ri —

TALLORAN

Yeah actually, it would be! Hey, Yamada, aren't you still there?

(TALLORAN looks up, only to see YAMADA completely gone.)

GLASS

Oof. Unfortunate.

TALLORAN

W… what? But I can still remember her. Why isn't she here?

GLASS

I think our subject of discussion's finding you.

(The two remain silent for minutes. THE AUDIENCE grows impatient. The world gradually shifts itself again. GLASS looks up at the sky.)



II-1-13

GLASS

Hey… our session is almost up. But I just want to ask you about something. Earlier, you talked about the Foundation being traumatizing, and having a rough young adulthood. But you didn't say anything about it being wholly your fault when it wasn't, and vice versa, right?

(TALLORAN remains silent for twenty seconds.)

GLASS

Do you think you've accepted that oftentimes, the bad shit that happens to you isn't your fault? And that when it is your fault, you know it and can accept it?

(TALLORAN remains silent for another minute. THE AUDIENCE starts to riot.)



II-1-14

GLASS

Sometimes, if you shift your point of view, you can reach new levels of understanding with yourself, and with your actions. I didn't have time to teach you that out there in reality, but here I think you understand.

TALLORAN

I…

(As TALLORAN stands up, the physical form that is taken begins to gradually break off and disintegrate. Bits detach, and TALLORAN shakes, staring at GLASS surprised.)

GLASS

Who knows when our next chance at calm is? But when you get it, remember what you learned on your way there.

(THE AUDIENCE floods the stage, taking the form of THE BEING now, and the world shatters. TALLORAN hesitantly nods and reaches out to GLASS, before the body completely breaks and there is no remaining light.)

(BLACKOUT)
(CURTAIN)
(END OF ACT)
(FIN)




Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License