Play 16: All the Way Home

by Joseph Frost

a play written for The 31 Plays in 31 Days Project

Draft August 16, 2012

© Attic Scripts 4550 Normandy Dr Jackson, MS 39206 atticscripts@hotmail.com

A bench in front of a glass panel. a window seat.

Or

GLYNNE, an elderly woman stands upstage of the panel/window. GLYNNE I had a window, growing up, that was... my place. I could go there on a lonely day, a rainy day, and it was mine. I could look out over our yard and down the street, and I was a little queen. It was like I was the queen. I would make a cup of hot cocoa from heated milk and the chocolate powder and I would curl up in my window seat to look out. Most times I remember waiting for my father to come home. My mother had passed away during childbirth, so it meant that I was home alone most days after school, and sometimes in the summers. Couldn’t have been much more than six at the time. No, that’s not right. So young. My father was such a handsome man. Was his whole life. I asked him once why he never remarried. I don’t remember what he said, but he never did. I would always be so happy when he got home. Relieved. I would set down my cup, and I would jump up in the window, and I would wave... I would wave as hard as my arms would let me. I had to have been beaming. I wish I would have had a child, a grandchild, to wave at me like that. To come running. To pound on the glass until it almost broke. My father would smile at me, and he would wave back, gently. And he’d motion to me to stop pounding on the window, but I usually didn’t. I couldn’t help myself. Looking back, we were lucky the glass didn’t break. We were lucky. A woman, HAILEY, mid 30s sits in the window seat in front of Glynne. She does not take note of her. Hailey has a steaming cup of tea. DREW, mid 30s, stands far downstage, back to the audience. I’m sorry. Not your fault. DREW HAILEY

2. DREW HAILEY It’s stupid.

I know. Then don’t apologize.

DREW I don’t know what else-Then just shut up then. HAILEY A moment. GLYNNE My father worked hard. Money was tight, but he always found a way to work. And he did all the repairs around the house himself. Never had anything in our house that wasn’t jerry-rigged or pieces-parts, but it all worked. When we needed it. We have to stop. Hailey... HAILEY DREW

HAILEY I can’t go through this anymore. DREW I’m sor-- I know it’s hard. Oh, really. It’s hard for me, too. HAILEY DREW

HAILEY Well, gosh, Drew, I didn’t realize you were having such a hard time. Hailey... DREW

HAILEY I mean with all the hormones you’ve been shooting into your body, and all the doctor’s appointments-Hail. DREW

3. HAILEY I didn’t realize how hard it would be on you. DREW Beating me up doesn’t make it better. HAILEY Don’t act like we’re going through the same thing. DREW Don’t act like you’re alone. Seriously. HAILEY You’re going to get mad at me.

DREW Only if you try to shut me out. (beat) I’m not, and I would never, try to suggest that we’re going through the same thing. But this isn’t easy for me, either. I’m so sorry, Drew. HAILEY How can I make it better for you? A moment. GLYNNE I’m sure that we went through times... I’m sure we did. just don’t remember them. I don’t remember them that way. There was always work for my father. And I always had my place. Where I could be a queen. DREW Are you sure you want to give up? Of course I’m not sure. HAILEY I

DREW We aren’t out of options. I know. We could... adopt. HAILEY DREW

HAILEY I don’t want to talk about this. We can keep trying. DREW

4. HAILEY I don’t want to talk about it. Ok. DREW Glynne reaches forward and touches the window, near Hailey’s face. GLYNNE I’d press my face up against the glass, and strain to see my father coming up the street. Walking with his lunch pail. HAILEY I don’t want to talk about anything. What can I do? You can be there. DREW HAILEY Or here. Which ever. Drew steps forward. Ok. But don’t talk. Ok. DREW HAILEY I can’t... handle it. DREW Drew sits on the bench. GLYNNE I always imagined what it would be like for my father to come around the corner and see me in the window. He was always tired from a long day. But I could tell by his steps. His steps got stronger after he saw me in the window. And I felt... I felt like I gave him... strength. Seeing me gave him the strength, to make it all the way home. My tea is cold. HAILEY

GLYNNE That’s why I would jump up and wave. As if I could wave harder, and help him get home faster. Silly girl.

5. Hailey sets down the tea cup. is somewhat near Drew’s. Her hand

Hailey slides her hand over, and put her hand under Drew’s hand. He holds her hand firm. GLYNNE (CONT’D) I always wanted... a child. A grandchild. me... strength in that way. Little arms waving in a window. So I could make it all the way home. All the way home. Drew looks at Hailey. (softly) Sorry. DREW Who could give

I.

Am.

I know. I love you.

HAILEY (beat)

DREW I can make you some more tea. No thank you. HAILEY Just please... Drew grips her hand tight. Hailey looks out the window. Glynne looks in. Lights down.