The Visit! A Play By Malcolm T Gould

Synopsis.

Jan Jones and Tony Allen are members of a Paranormal Investigation Team or P.I. T. They have been contacted by a Tara Green who thinks her House is haunted. So when they call one Autumn evening for a preliminary visit to ascertain if the place warranted a full investigation. But they soon wished they had not made the appointment for the visit. A one-act play set in real-time. Present day.

Cast of characters.

Jan Jones- Psychic medium mid thirties.

Tony Allen- Paranormal Investigator late thirties.

Tara Green-A Housewife.

Erica Green-Daughter early twenties.

Act 1              Scene 1

Curtains open to a darkened stage. A wind can be heard blowing around the theatre. front spot lights up. To show Jan sitting on  her daughter  Erica’s bed. Both look terrified.

Erica.

I did see something Mum it was a dark shape and it grabbed my arm as well.

(Sits up and hugs her mum.)

Tara.

(Letting go and glancing around the room.)

I do believe you Erica. I’ve felt odd thing in this house to.  ( Sounds scared )

Erica.

Let’s get out of here ( Pauses )  I’m getting up and coming downstairs. I can’t stay up here.

( They both look terrified Jan gets up and moves  Stage Right. Footsteps are heard

and a door slams. Erica gets up putting on a dressing gown that’s on a chair to the

left of the bed quickly.)

Tara.

Come on then.

(Erica joins Tara and they exit together Stage Left.)

Scene 2

The stage lights go on to reveal the front room in an old house. Neat but a little shabby.   Tara is pacing up and down by the closed curtains up stage center. It’s the evening of the same day. There is a clock on a small table up stage right.  It strikes eight PM.

Tara.

 

( A deep voice  groans. Tara shouts out.)

Shut up please, just leave me and my daughter alone! ( Pause ) Go away.

( There is a knock at the door Tara pulls curtains apart and glances out.)

Good at last I hope that’s them. ( Thinking aloud. )

(Tara exits back stage left there is a second gentle knock  sound of door opening and closing voices.)

Please come into the front room.

( Enter Tara followed by Jan and Tony.)

Tara.

Can I take your coats? ( They all look cold and nervous. )

Jan.

No thank you ( Smiles. )

Tony.

I’ll keep mine on to, if you don’t mind?

Tara.

I don’t blame you, it’s chilly in here. I just can’t seem to get it warm.

(Jan and Tony move left they all stand by the settee down stage left both shake Tara’s hand then nervously sit on the settee.)

Please sit down.

(She sits on chair opposite stage right.)

Thank you for coming so quickly I’m Tara.

Jan.

That’s alright, my names Jan ( Glances at Tony. )

Tony.

Hello I’m Tony. As I’m sure you know ( Gives a strained smile. ) we’re from the The Paranormal Investigation Team or P.I.T’s for short.

Jan.

This is our preliminary visit so we can get some background information and find out what your experiences are.

Tony.

Yes we do try to visit within twenty four hours of a call. I hope you don’t mind if Jan uses a digital recorder to takes notes?

Tara.

No that’s fine I’m just glad you could come so quickly.

(Jan takes a small tape recorder out of her hand bag and places it on the coffee table in front of her and switches it on.)

Tara.

Uh no of course not, is it alright to begin? ( Pauses.) What do want to know?

Tony.

If you could outline the sort experiences you’ve had here, time of day, frequency.

(As he is speaking a lamp on a small table  back stage right .Starts to turn itself on and off.)

Tara.

That happens all the time, the electric has been checked but nothing was found to be wrong ( She preempt their question.)

Jan.

Thanks that saves asking. ( smiles )

Tara.

( Continues )  There have been strange occurrences happening in this House for a few years I can’t be more accurate. It seems like an eternity and it’s getting more intent.

(There is a screaming sound off stage.)

That’s my daughter she’s in the kitchen ( Looking worried she glances off stage left .) Excuse me I must go and see what’s wrong.

Jan.

Of course.

(Tara quickly gets up and exits back stage left Jan and Tony follow her exit.)

I’m glad she’s gone out the room, I saw a dark figure behind her. It’s an odd place we should make our excuses and go.

( Grabs Tony’s left arm tightly.)

Tony.

( Whispering ) Wait a minute Jan we can’t just walk out. We’ve only just arrived, to me this has the potential of being a real haunting case. I’ll do some base line tests, we can’t miss this opportunity. We came to assess, the rest of the team are waiting to know. She needs help let’s see if we can. ( He now gently holds her hand. )

Jan

( Gives a deep sigh )

Alright but I do feel very uneasy in this house.

Tony.

( Tony gives Jan a hug.)

Thanks I understand.

(Tara re-enters back stage left Jan and Tony quickly separate.)

Tara.

( Sitting back down in the chair.)

Sorry I had to leave so quickly. But my daughter was very upset, she told me something had touched her arm in the kitchen.

Jan.

Did she see anything Tara?

Tara.

No Erica never mentioned seeing anything, just a strong feeling of being gripped firmly. I used to think she had a vivid imagination but not any more.

Tony.

Is she alright in the kitchen on her own?

Tara.

Yes she’s fine for the moment she’ll come in here in a little while. (  fidgeting )

(Sits on the edge of the chair.)

Jan.

How old is your daughter? Because young teenagers can be very sensitive.

Tara.

My Daughters not a teenager anymore, she’s twenty-three now. How old do you think I am? Erica may not act her age sometimes, but she’s certainly not a child anymore.

Jan.

( Jan and Tony glance at each other embarrassed.)

Sorry we honestly thought she was younger.

Tara.

( Smiling ) That’s fine,  I must look younger than I thought. ( Pauses.) This house isn’t easy to live in.

Tony.

We can certainly understand that feeling.

(  Cautiously glancing around the room.)

Jan.

I don’t mean to pry but where is your husband?

(She moves to the edge of the settee checking recorder on coffee table.)

Tara.

(Sighs as she composes her thoughts ) I do have a husband he left me and Erica about two years ago, not long after we moved into this house. He had been having an affair with his secretary.

(Jan and Tony fidget nervously.)

Jan.

(  Breaks the uneasy silence moving on the conversation.)

Can you be more specific on when these events started? You said it was about two years ago. I—-

(Jan suddenly stops talking and appears to go into a trance she slumps back on the settee. )

Tara.

I didn’t say how long (Pauses ) Are you Alright Jan?

( Tara looks at Jan unsure what is happening.)

Tony.

( Turns to Jan and tries to guide her through the trance he holds her hand.)

She’ll be fine this happens often, images come into her mind without warning . I’ve got use to it now.

Tara.

Does she have many of those?

(Jan is staring in front of her she points and screams. Tony has a job to restrain her as she stands and points wide-eyed.)

Tony.

Yes all the time.

Tara.

What is she seeing?

( Tara  turns to where she pointing and Tony follows her gaze as well.)

Tony.

I don’t know I can’t see anything. (Pauses) Wait a minute I could have sworn I saw  shadow by the fire-place.

Tara.

I can’t see anything!

(Straining her eyes almost panicking)

Jan.

(Jan suddenly  relaxes and slumps back down on the settee Tony stops her from falling on the floor. Coming around and sitting up putting her hands over her face.)

Oh that’s better, sorry about that those were clear images. Please give me a few moments.

Tony.

Are you  sure your OK?

Jan.

( Glancing at Tony.)

Yes stop worrying you should be use to this by now. ( Smiles. )  I would like a cup of tea though. If that’s alright

Tara.

(Unsure just what is going on.)

Sorry I should have offered you one, I’ll make a pot of tea.

( Jan and Tony look at each and nod in agreement. )

Tony.

Thank you that will be lovely.

Tara.

Good then I’ll go and get it, I expect you would like a break.

( Half smiles and exits back stage left.)

Tony.

What did you see?

( Glances over left shoulder.)

I wish I could see some of the activity you do.

Jan.

I don’t think you would Tony. It looked like a middle-aged man, I didn’t sense it was Tara’s husband though. Whoever he is he appeared for a few seconds near the fire-place.

( Jan points while Tony gets up and moves to the fire-place.)

Tony.

Here? ( Standing in the exact spot.)

Jan.

Yes that’s about right.

( Walking over and joining him.)

Ooh it’s much colder here , don’t you think?

Tony.

( takes out an electric spot thermometer from his right coat pocket. And takes a reading)

I’m glad I brought the thermometer at least we can get an idea of how cold it is. It’s ten centigrade. A definite cold spot,  I’ll check the other side of the room.

( Points thermometer gun at other side of stage.)

Twenty centigrade a lot warmer than here, drafty old place.

Jan.

It is but that does not account for such a low reading in this small area. I’m feeling edgy maybe we should go and come back with the full team.

( Moving back to settee.)

Much better over here.

Tony.

No it’s just getting interesting.

( As he stands by the fire-place talking. There is a loud thud to his right.)

Hell what was that? That sounded like a heavy object being dropped.

Jan.

A body maybe! ( Pauses. ) There’s something just moved passed you!

(Tony jumps back and stares in front of him then turns to Jan. Just as Tara enters back stage left. Holding a tray She puts it on the coffee table, then turns to see what Tony is excited about.)

Tara.

What’s happening I heard a bang.

Jan.

There’s a lot of activity in this room Tara.

( Jan looks at Tara as she sees  something following her.)

And there is a shadowy figure behind you!

Tara.

( She turns in a complete circle surprised at what Jan said.)

I don’t see anybody in fact I feel very comfortable at the moment.

( She moves to the coffee table kneels down and pours the tea.)

Which is unusual for me. Milk or sugar?

Jan.

Just milk please.

( Tara hands her a cup.)

Thank you.

Tara.

And you Tony?

Tony.

Milk one sugar please.

( He comes over and takes the cup from Tara then sits next to Jan on the settee.)

Tara.

So you’ve found something then?

( Pours a tea out gets up and moves front stage right.)

It’s certainly chilly here.

( Turns.)

I should go and find out what Erica is doing.

Jan.

Yes I think it’s better we are all together.

(She gets up and moves front centre stage. Tara moves up stage and exits back stage Left she takes her tea with her.)

I don’t like it Tony. I’m not happy.

Tara.

Tara enters back stage left without her cup, but with her daughter Erica. Tara guides her daughter centre stage right, she sits on the chair. Tara then stands behind her.)

Ooh, it felt as though somebody was walking over my grave. ( Shudders.) I was alright just now.

Erica.

( Jumpy glancing around her.)

What’s that I thought I heard a voice!

(A wind can now be heard blowing faintly in the background. The three are silent. Then the lights go out and there is a loud scream. Lights come back on Tara is sitting on the arm of the chair holding Erica who is crying.)

Mum I saw him! ( Shaking.) I’m really scared!

( Tara looks at Jan and Tony.)

Yes Erica I truly believe you. What is going on?

( Jan and Tony put their cups on the table as Tara continuous to stare at them intently.)

Jan.

Hello Erica. I’m Jan and this is Tony we are from–

Erica.

(Looks up sharply and sitting up straight her words bite as she cuts in on his conversation.)

I know who you are!

Tony.

That’s good. So what do you think you saw tonight, anybody you recognise?

Erica.

I  honestly don’t know!

Tara.

My daughter is obviously very upset.

( She gets up and moves down stage centre.)

Please give her a breather, ask me some more questions.

( Jan and Tony stand and move down stage centre to join Tara.)

Tony.

Can you give us some idea who you think it is Tara?

Tara.

( She turns angrily on them.)

Haven’t you seen something yourself Jan? I’ve only witnessed shadows, lights coming on maybe objects moving and weird sounds.  I’m not sure it could be my imagination!

Jan.

Yes I have seen things here I can’t explain. And it wasn’t my imagination. I don’t want to scare you anymore than I have to but–

Tara.

(Cuts into Jan’s conversation.)

I can assure you could not scare us anymore than we already are. Though often I’ve felt it’s been a nightmare here. Yet other times all has been well. This was such a happy home when we moved in and before my husband left us.

( Tara screams with frustration.)

I never know what will happen next.

Erica.

( Comes down centre front stage and puts her arm around her mum.)

Please Mum don’t get upset.

Tara.

(Tara stops crying and takes a deep breath.)

I’m sorry about that, the tension just builds up inside.

Jan.

(Moving closer.)

It must be hard to bear for both of you.

Tony.

( Moves front stage left and turns to face the ladies.)

And neither of you seem to have any idea what it’s all about.

( Tara and Erica wearily move back to chair centre right Tara sits.)

Erica.

Why do you keep on prying its upsetting my mum.

( Erica sits on the left arm of the chair Just as the clock strikes the quarter-hour.)

Jan.

( Moves over to Tony’s side right front stage left.)

I hope we haven’t upset your Mum or you. We are only gathering information to discuss your case with the team. But if you no longer want us to investigate we will go now.

Tara.

No please don’t go we need to get to the bottom of this nightmare.

Jan.

( moves back to the settee and sits on the edge.)

( Another deep sigh.)

Alright have your neighbours ever told you they’ve heard or seen anything passing here?

Tara.

Nothing has been said, but their elderly and rather deaf. So I’m not really surprised. Though we have never had much to do with them.

Tony.

( Comes back up to settee and stands by coffee table centre stage.)

Did you know of any history about the house before you moved in?

Tara.

No all I know is the house had been empty for sometime. We did here a middle-aged couple owned it they split up and the house was put on the market. At the time it seemed strange it had been empty for so long. The price did seem low for the area.

( For a few seconds there is silence then the lamp flickers on and off several times.)

Jan.

That’s interesting this could be the key. Gosh! it’s got very cold.

( Jan stands up.)

Tony.

( Shivering.)  Yes you’re right something is going to happen.

( As Jan looks at Tara and Erica she suddenly screams. The two jump backwards. Tony to is taken by surprise and catches Jan as she falls . Both ending up on the settee.)

Tara.

( Looking shaky.) Have you seen another image Jan?

Erica.

What did you see?

Jan.

( Struggling to her feet.)

I must get out, this is an evil place.

Tony.

( Supporting here.)

What is it?

Jan.

( Hesitating.) I feel faint.

( Holding onto the Tony for support.)

I saw a man stabbing a woman by the fire-place.

Tony.

( Trying to whisper.)

Was it Tara or E—

Jan.

(Cutting his conversation short.)

No no I didn’t recognise them, but is was much clearer.

Tara.

( Standing up and moving towards Jan.)

Hey! What are you suggesting?

Erica.

( Coming up besides her mum.)

They think we killed Dad!

Tony.

( Turning to face them.)

I admit that was my thought, but now it would seem I was wrong!

( As they all stand looking at each other a picture on the wall above the fire-place. Suddenly without warning crashes loudly to the floor. All of them stare. Tara and Erica back around the coffee table and sit heavily on the settee. Jan and Tony have bravely moved towards the chair, to get a better look.)

Tara.

( Putting her arm around Erica.)

That was my husbands photograph.  (Looks shocked.)  But we didn’t kill him he is alive somewhere.

Tony.

Yes I realise that, it was to easy to put two and two together and come to the wrong conclusion. I think we had better finish our questions.

Jan.

Yes I agree with Tony. I don’t want to alarm you both but whatever is here it’s getting stronger and we need to help you quickly if we can.

( The and lamp goes on and off.)

Tara.

I’m still not sure it was a good idea calling you. Also I’m beginning to wonder whether it’s a good idea you being here!

Erica.

It’s never been quite so bad before.

( Erica glances around the room then hugs her mum then pulls away and gets up.)

Tony.

Let’s try and calm down none of us especially Jan and myself thought anything like this would happen.

(As he talks Erica is moving around the settee. she’s  being drawn towards the kitchen back stage left and exits.)

Jan.

All I know is there is an evil presence in this house and we should move as quickly as possible towards the front door.

( Jan and Tony slowly move across the back of the stage the curtains start to blow.)

Tara.

Where’s Erica?

( As she speaks Erica enters quietly moving down front stage left to front center stage her back to the audience who can see a knife behind her back.)

Erica there are.

( Tara starts to walk down stage.)

Jan.

No! stop where you are please!

(Erica now moves slowly towards the fire-place Tony turns and heads back towards the spot he had just left unsure of what was going on.)

Tony be careful she has been possessed!

Tony.

Alright Jan.

(Erica moves to the fire-place stage right just as Tony draws near. Suddenly Erica brings the knife from behind her back and raises it  high, lunging forward and bringing the knife down with force and screaming. Tony finds himself having to move back quickly.)

Erica.

Die You Bitch!

(Erica collapses on the floor crying, Tony courteously moves towards her and gently helps her up.)

Tara.

(Runs across the stage and helps Tony bring her back to the settee.)

Erica are you alright.

( Hugging her daughter again Erica is shocked dazed and still crying.)

Erica.

I think so. It was the most strange thing I felt I had to kill. The urge was so strong I could see a shape in front of me. I could not stop myself bringing the knife down. Then all the thoughts had gone and Tony was helping me up.

Tony.

( He picks up the kitchen knife and puts it on the shelf above the fire-place stares at it for a few seconds then moves down front centre stage deep in thought. just as the lamp flickers and the lights go out for a few second. When they come on he glances instinctively. but the knife has gone.)

The knife it’s gone!

( Moves back to fire-place he looks around then moves stage left and joins Jan by the settee.)

Where did that go? ( Nervous.)

Jan.

I don’t know Tony! Erica was certainly possessed but by what?

(They look at each other uncertain of what to say or do next. Staying close together in a self protective group.)

There is a presence I can feel it’s power, let’s head towards the lounge door and hopefully the front door.

( Tara and Erica stand and hold hands as they all move slowly across the back stage towards back stage right as they approach the exit a door is heard slamming loudly.)

Erica.

That sounded like a door upstairs.

Tara.

Definitely a bedroom door.

(Footsteps are heard coming down the stairs.)

Oh dear lord! Something is coming down the stairs!

Jan.

This malevolent spirit does not want us to leave this place!

Tara.

We’re trapped it’s going to kill us all,  why did I ask you to come.

Tony.

(Footsteps stop just in front of them.)

It’s trying to stop us getting out of the front door. We may have no choice but go out the back.

( Another loud bang is heard.)

Erica.

(Screams and shout out hysterically.) Who are you? What do you want? Leave us alone! ( Pauses.) It’s  freezing!

( They all stare as they appear to see something in the doorway.)

Did you see that dark shape?

All.

Yes!

( The lamp flickers on and off once more than crashes off the table onto the floor as a wind is heard and the curtains start to blow.)

Jan.

Did you see that?

Tony.

See what Jan?

Jan.

A dark shadow just ran into the room past the curtains.

Tony.

No but I thought there was something in the hall. But I agree with Erica its freezing worst it’s been.

Tara.

So what do we do now?

( Footsteps are heard again.)

Tony.

Let’s try the back door, we can’t stand here.

( Tony leads them and they stand back stage left.)

I’ll check the back door, Will you be OK?

Jan.

( Gathering Tara and Erica by her side.)

Yes hurry.

Tony.

( Exits voice off stage.)

Damn the doors jammed!

( Sound of breaking glass and splintering wood.)

It’s open, Ah

Jan.

What happened? Tony!

Tony.

( Re-enters.)

Yes fine I cut my hand it’s only a scratch. Come on Tara you and Erica had better go first.

Tara.

Thank you.

( Tara and Erica run off  back stage left Jan and Tony look around the room.)

Jan.

( Lamp flickers continuously the wind can be heard moving the curtains.)

( Gasps.) Oh God.

( Grabbing Tony’s  Left arm. )

There’s a figure in front of me! Let’s go!

( But as they try to exit back stage left Tony is wrenched back.)

Tony.

Hell! something is pulling me back into the room.

( A tug of war commences Jan Pulling him with all her strength.)

Don’t let go!

Jan.

Hell might be the more than just a word! I’m trying, but it’s to strong for me.

( Calling out.)

Tara Erica so sorry, but I need your help.

Erica.

( Running on back stage left.)

What’s up?

( Realising the situation.)

Jan.

Give me your hand.

(There’s a physical struggle and a battle of wills, Tara enters but is too afraid to help and is routed to the spot by the settee.)

Tara.

I can’t! I can’t move!

( Slowly and with all their strength Tony is almost dragged back. Suddenly the force stops and they all almost fall over. And stand looking very shaken.)

Jan.

Go while you can!

( Tara and Erica exit back stage left Jan’s still holding Tony’s hand.)

This time nothing will stop us. ( Out of breath.) But I want to get to the bottom of this place, we must come back with the full team Jan!

Jan.

We’ll talk about this Ton.yThis is a scary House, Let’s go and speak to them

Tony.

Fine. Oh better not forget the Dictaphone that should  make extremely interesting listening .

( Jan reluctantly let’s go of his hand,  he goes over to the coffee table and snatches the Dictaphone and holds it tightly. Jan quickly comes over and grabs his hand they look at each other.)

Jan.

Can we leave now?

Tony.

Yes a very good idea. But we are coming back.

(Jan smiles knowingly and they exit back stage left both looking exhausted.)

Jan.

What a visit!

( As they exit the curtains blow gently a low deep groan is heard as the clock strikes the hour and the lamp flickers on the floor.. Fade stage lights.)

The End ( Or is It?)

The Foureyed Poet.

 

 

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Published in: on 13/11/2007 at 14:34  Leave a Comment  

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