|The Act of Running Away
Author: Prima Terminus PM
A One-Act depicting an exchange between the nomadic runaway Sam and a small town waitress in an extremely secluded town. PLEASE GIVE FEEDBACK!Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Drama - Words: 843 - Published: 10-21-12 - Status: Complete - id: 3067485
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The Act of Running Away
Scene: Diner at nighttime. The space is unoccupied by anyone except for a bored waitress sitting at a chair.
SAM walks quietly to the only apparent table in the room and sits down. JANNA strolls over to take SAM's order.
JANNA: Hello, there. Welcome to Jerry and Joan's Diner, I'll be your server this evening, my name is Janna. Is there anything that I could get you to drink?
SAM: Two coffees please.
JANNA: Oh, is someone joining you tonight?
SAM: Well, I don't believe that any sane being else lies in at least a three mile radius of this here spot. So, being that you're the first person I've laid eyes on in a fortnight, I was hoping for you to join me.
JANNA: I don't-
SAM: Please, Janna.
JANNA: Ok. Well I'd be glad to then. I'll be right back.
(SAM fumbles around with the salt shakers and napkins until JANNA returns with two mugs)
JANNA: Two cups of coffee. (She sits down.) So, what's your name?
SAM: Sam. (Takes a sip) Brilliant coffee you have here. I must have had at least a hundred different establishments' brews over this past year, and this is definitely one of the best.
JANNA: Well thanks, Sam. It's all in the proportions.
SAM: I'm sure.
JANNA: So. What's your story?
(SAM laughs heartily)
SAM: I've asked that question so many times. My story is insignificant. It's been lost. It's the people whom I've met's stories that are really important.
JANNA: What do you do where you meet all these people?
SAM: Well, I've been trekking this country from south to north to west to east all year. I sell art, objects, things... Nothing shady, don't look worried. But I take in people's lives stories. Stories are all we really have.
JANNA: How long do you plan on doing that?
SAM: Until I stop being terrified. And that has no expiration date, I think.
JANNA: Terrified of what?
SAM: Being stuck.
SAM: You know... stuck. Stuck in some repetitive pattern of life, with a house and a spouse and those two point five kids...
JANNA: It doesn't have to be that way.
SAM: Okay, then. I could be like this great hermit I met once. He was seventy nine and had enough great memories to fill a library. See, Janna, the only thing we humans have are memories. When we're old and alone all we'll have are our memories. Stories. Stories and memories- those are the only true remnants of the adventures that stay with us. Everything else can go... but we'll have those memories for as long as we live. And if we share them, then we can become as close as immortal as we can be, in a way.
JANNA: So if all that really matters are memories, why don't you stay with people long enough to make lasting ones? If all things come down to are our memories, then wouldn't it not matter whether the memories were spent trekking the globe or living a standard American life?
SAM: That's the catch. Most of us just work our lives away and only share things with our family and those... close. We don't affect each other in this world, we stay in our own little worlds, really. That's why I think... (Long pause)
JANNA: ... that you ran away?
SAM: Yeah. I don't want to end up in my own little world like every other being. Every other being that lives such an insignificant little life...
JANNA: But those insignificant lives all added up end up being extremely significant.
SAM: And that's why I'm gathering so many. We've come full circle.
JANNA: How do you gather lives?
SAM: Here. (Pulls out backpack. Takes out a shell, an old book, and a ring.) These objects each hold life stories. Each one of these is a major piece in someone's first person narrative. Each of these are part of my library... now- you must think I'm nutty by now, right?
JANNA: No more than the finest of creatures.
SAM: Well, I told you. I'm lost. I've buried myself in this... and I don't think I can get out. Whoever I was is gone. Sam is just another life. Understand?
JANNA: You can get out. Look, we're all part of this same functioning world, we're each a pawn of our own playing this game. It's not forever, like you say. But embracing yourself is important. THAT is all you have, Sam. You'll be with yourself till the day you die. Memories are important, but what you have right now, this second of conciousness- this moment, the constant present- that is the only constant you can grab onto.
SAM: You're right.
JANNA: I am? Well...yes. I am.
SAM: I think that you've inspired me to head back West. There's a few things I need to sort out. Some things that I've run away from.
(SAM leaves as Janna spills Sam's mug's remains)