school ASSignment
Alex Simon
11/20/03
Ass. 1
Dr. James
ENG 2800 (I think)

Perchance to Dream

Dramatis Personae:

Mike - 23, conservative, khakis and Polos kind of guy, smart.
Heath - 21, sporty, trendy Armani type, sarcastic.
Dead Guy - Dead.

Setting: Opens up in a densely wooded area; rolled up Oriental carpet is only thing in sight. Well, that is, until our two protagonists stumble upon it.

~ enter Heath and Mike ~

Mike: (Bright sing-songy voice.) Whose woods these are, I think I - (Is first to spot rug, and stops in mid sentence.) Hey, Heath, what do you think that is? (Tugs on sleeve of Heath's jacket.)

Heath: (Turns to glance at brother.) A rug, stupid.

Mike: No, there's something in it... (Inches closes, picks up a long twig.) There's something rolled up in the rug... (Pokes at rug with the stick.)

~ An arm, obviously human, falls out, and the two young men cry out ~

Mike: (Leaps back in shock and horror.) Oh my GOD! I think that's a dead man in there, Heath! (Shrilly.)

Heath: (Regards him coolly.) Duh. (Kneels beside the carpet and puts his hands on it.) You gonna help me unroll this thing or do I have to do it all by myself?

Mike: (Eyes widen.) Are you out of your mind, Heath?! You're touching a dead man. Someone who was probably murdered and placed in that Oriental rug by a mur-der-er. (Trembling with fear.)

Heath: (Laughs.) Dude, he's fucking dead. It's hardly likely that he'll come back to life and eat my brains. Now is it?

Mike: (Still trembling. Can't seem to comprehend the fact that brother Heath is touching the rug with the dead body.) You're insane, Heath. You're out of your mind. What if the person who put the body here sees us, huh? What if we become his next victims because you thought it would be cool to desecrate a dead body!

Heath: (Stares at his brother.) Man, chill out. The guy is dead. I just want to have a look at him. (Begins to roll out Oriental rug. Another arm, and two legs emerge, as the carpet is rolled out.) Cool...

Mike: I don't see what's so cool about this... (Keeps to the periphery of the wooded area, arms wrapped around himself.)

Heath: (Enraptured w/the body.) Woah, man... This is fucking intense. (Reaches out and takes the dead man's wrist in his hand, feeling for a pulse.) Yep, definitely dead... And he's cold too... Probably been out here a while...

Mike: We've got to bury him. We've got to give him a proper Christian burial.

Heath: (Raises an eyebrow.) Mike, we're Jewish.

Mike: I know that. But he wasn't. (Motions to a cross around his neck.) If he's not given a proper burial, his soul will roam earth forever, in Purgatory.

Heath: (Rolls eyes.) Dude, if he's not given a burial, he'll become worm food THAT'S what'll happen to him.

Mike: How can you be so cold? Would you be so callous if this were Mom or Dad who was wrapped up in this rug, and not this poor stranger?

Heath: Dude, why are you such a bleeding heart? We don't know him. We don't owe him anything. (Slips the man's wristwatch off.) Stopped at 10:23 AM... (Eyes it, tilts head to side and examines it. Pockets it.)

Mike: I can't believe you're robbing from a dead man!

Heath: Not like he's going to need it, Mikey Boy. (Drops man's wrist.) Let's get rid of the body...

Mike: You...

Heath: Let's give him a funeral. (Shrugs indifferently.)

~ Some time passes, as Mike tries to dig into the dirt with his hands, to no avail. Eventually, Heath and Mike wrap the man back up in the rug and begin covering him with snow ~

Mike: (Looks over at Heath as they cover the body with snow and pack it down.) Just what do you think you're doing?

Heath: (Rolling little balls of snow in his red chapped hands.) I'm making a snowman.

Mike: That's so ghoulish. (Continues to pack snow.) Who's going to give the eulogy?

Heath: Do we have? I mean, Mike, we didn't even fucking know the guy. He could've been a murderer himself, for all we know... Hell, maybe he was a transient who rolled himself up in this rug to keep warm, and suffocated during his sleep?

Mike: That doesn't happen, Heath.

Heath: But it could. Not everything is always gloom and doom and murderers, and shit, Mikey. Lighten the fuck up. (Packs down snow, molds mound of snow into a snowman type shape.) Anyway, if people think it's just a harmless old snowman, they won't bother the guy 'til the snow thaws.

Mike: (Shrugs.) Guess I'll give the eulogy then. (Clears throat.) Um, although we didn't know you, we were able to tell from your clothing that you were probably a drifter. Drifter life often carries with it an indelible, unescapable stigma. A 'scarlet letter' of sorts. I only hope that your life after death will be better than your life before death.

Heath: (Furrows brow, arches eyebrow at Mike. Long silence, and finally - ) You speak really eloquently... You ever thought of doing Instant Eulogies? You could probably make a killing -

Mike: (Hits Heath in the shoulder.)

Heath: Ok, ok, bad choice of words. (Holds up hands in defense.) Let's get going. It's really cold. And Mom and Dad will be wondering where we've been.

Mike: (Shrugs.) D'you think they'd believe us if we told them - ? (Gestures to burial mound of snow. Twigs have been stuck on either sides of the mound, and a smiley face has been drawn on. Mike sighs.)

Heath: Naaah. Why make 'em worry, eh? (He heads back toward the boys' house.)

~ A light snow fall has begun, and the snowflakes cling to Mike's hair and eyelashes. His skin is quite pale, and he looks almost otherworldly ~

Mike: (Lingers behind, eyes riveted to mound of snow.) "To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub; For in that sleep of death what dreams may come."

EXEUNT OMNES. Except the dead guy, because he's dead. So maybe just EXEUNT MIKE.

THE END