"Santa"

By Jade Strong

Characters:

Randi Hughes: Spunky eleven year old girl, wants to prove Santa exists.

Benjamin Hughes: Nine year old younger brother, really thinks they should be going to bed.

Santa Clause: The big man himself

Lavern: head elf at the Kringle co. [Note: If played as a girl change Mr. Elf to Ms. Elf]

Setting: The Hughes living room, Christmas Eve. Present.

Running Time: Approximately 12:00-15:00 min.

(Scene opens to a darkened living room the night before Christmas. RANDI and BENJAMIN enter in pajamas, sneaking. Both have flash lights. RANDI has a camera)

Benjamin: Randi… Come on, Randi. Let's go back to bed.

Randi: No way. I told you I'm not going back to bed 'til I get my picture.

Benjamin: But what if mom and dad wake up and see us?

Randi: They will if you don't shut up.

(Zips his lip shut, locks it, and puts away key. This lasts for only a few moments until he starts up again fearfully-)

Benjamin: Randi…

Randi: Benjamin David Hughes. If you're so scared of getting caught you go back to bed. I'm staying here.

Benjamin: Fine. I will. (Starts to exit, changes his mind then goes back) I just don't get why you want to take a picture of Santa so bad.

Randi: Because I'm tired of everyone at school laughing at me. "Oh, Miranda, you still believe in Santa? That's for babies." "You're eleven years old, Miranda, you're too old to believe in Santa." "Hey, stop doodling pictures of Santa and do your goshdarn math homework, Miranda." It never ends!

Benjamin: So why don't you just ignore them?

Randi: I tried. They never let up. So I'm going to show them. (muttering to self) Stinking Joey Finkler and his stinking "grow up already"…stupid…

Benjamin: Joey Finkler? I thought you liked Joey Finkler.

Randi: NO. He's just my friend. (muttering to self again) My stinking make-fun-of-me-and-make-me-cry-in-front-of the-whole-class-during-the-Christmas-party friend… I hope he gets a big fat lump of coal in his stocking…

Benjamin: If you're so mad at him then how come I saw you drawing a big heart on your notebook with "JF+ RH" in it?

Randi: I… uh… Just go back to bed, Benjamin!

Benjamin: All right…

(BENJAMIN starts to exit when the sound of sleigh bells is heard. Both stop, listening.)

Benjamin: What was that?

Randi: It sounded like sleigh bells.

Randi and Benjamin: Santa!

Benjamin: Quick, get the camera.

Randi: I'm going. I'm going.

(While their backs are turned, SANTA enters through the door and sets to work putting presents around the tree. When they hear the door open they stop.)

Benjamin: That sounded like the door. I thought Santa comes down the chimney.

Randi: He does. That can only mean one thing.

Benjamin: Santa's feeling lazy this year?

Randi: No, dingwad, that's not Santa. It must be a burglar dressed up like Santa trying to steal our presents. (BENJAMIN screams. RANDI covers his mouth.) SHH! (Pulls him into hiding.)

Santa: Ho ho ho? Is anybody there? Hmm… They must have gotten a cat since I was here last year. Ah, well. Back to work. (Returns to putting presents under the tree)

Randi: We can't let him know we're here. He could be dangerous!

Benjamin: Should we call the police?

Randi: I've got a better idea. You take your flashlight, and knock him over the head with it.

Benjamin: What? Why me?

Randi: Cos you're a big strong man, and I'm just a weak helpless girl. You have to defend me.

Benjamin: Nu-uh.

Randi: Yeah-huh.

Benjamin: Last week I saw you throw a shovel at someone for saying your name wrong.

Randi: Yeah, and this is your chance to make up for not defending me then.

Santa: Ho ho ho!

Randi: Come on Ben, hurry. He's going to steal everything!

Benjamin: All right, I'm going.

(BENJAMIN takes his flashlight and creeps up behind SANTA. He strikes him in the head and SANTA falls to the ground, unconscious. RANDI runs over, cheering.)

Randi: You got him! You got him!

Benjamin: Take that, you big phony baloney.

Randi: I bet he's just wearing his Halloween costume from last year. What a chump.

Benjamin: Yeah, chump.

Randi: I bet that's not even a real beard.

Benjamin: Yeah. Hey, let's take it off and see who he really is like in Scooby Doo.

Randi: Yeah!

(RANDI tries to pull the beard off of SANTA unsuccessfully while BENJAMIN day dreams)

Benjamin: This is going to be great. We're going to be heroes. I bet they'll have a parade for us, and name a street after us, and an ice cream flavor after us, and give us a bazillion dollars. Then I'm going to buy a dog. No, a horse. No, a dinosaur… I've always wanted my own pet dinosaur.

(RANDI has been looking through Santa's pockets and has found a business card. She stumbles back, realizing he's the real thing.)

Randi: Ben…

Benjamin: (Still lost in his imagination) And I'll name my dinosaur Steve and we'll go to the moon and the carnival and the zoo and the-

Randi: Ben.

Benjamin: Oh, don't worry. We'll still give you a ride.

Randi: BEN!

Benjamin: What?

Randi: The beard isn't fake.

Benjamin: Oh. He really needs to shave then.

Randi: No, look. I found this in his pocket. (Hands him the business card)

Benjamin: (reading card) Santa P. Clause. President of the Kringle Co. (pronounces it literally as "Coh") So…

Randi: So? SO? You just knocked out the real Santa Clause!

Benjamin: But…. But… I didn't mean to. I didn't know...

Randi: You're going to get in so much trouble.

Benjamin: Well, you told me to do it!

Randi: I told you to go back to bed.

Benjamin: I told you to go back to bed!

Randi: Oh, man… What if this goes on my permanent record? What if they send me to juvie? What if Joey finds out and makes fun of me again? Oh, I bet the little stinkbug will call me names for weeks…

Benjamin: Santa Clause is lying on our floor, and all you care about is your stupid boyfriend?

Randi: Joey is not my boyfriend!

Benjamin: Wait, listen.

Lavern: (off) Mr. Clause? Mr. Clause, is everything all right in there?

Benjamin: What do we do?

Randi: We've got to hide him.

(They throw blankets and pillows over SANTA as LAVERN continues)

Lavern: Mr. Clause? Mr. Clause! I hope the man hasn't fallen asleep on the job again. I keep telling him these late hours aren't good for someone his age… I'm coming in there, Mr. Clause! They don't pay me enough to do this job…

(LAVERN enters, wearing a fuzzy hat that covers his ears and elf garb. RANDI and BENJAMIN behold him in wonder.)

Lavern: What are you kids doing up?

Randi: Oh, us? We were just... um… I was…

Lavern: Don't you know it's Christmas Eve? You two should be in bed. You little what-zits march your present grabbing fannies up to your rooms this instant or I'll be forced to open up a can of elf magic on you.

Benjamin: Woah, you're an elf?

Lavern: The genuine article. Now vamoose.

Benjamin: Do you have pointy ears? Can I touch them?

Lavern: Hey, hey, hey. Back off the ears, buddy, or I'll call the big man himself and your mom will be vacuuming coal dust out of the carpet for a month. Speaking of which, where is Santa?

Benjamin: Uh… he's…

Randi: Not here. He… just left. Up the chimney. Sorry, you missed him.

Lavern: That's absurd. Santa doesn't take the chimney down to houses.

Randi: He doesn't?

Lavern: No. Have you seen pictures of the guy? He's as big as the polar ice caps. That's just an urban legend. (Notices the pile of blankets and pillows) What's that?

Randi: Nothing.

Lavern: That looks like something.

Randi: It's nothing. It's… uh…

Benjamin: A lumpy couch!

Lavern: A lumpy couch.

Benjamin: Yup. (He sits on SANTA) It's as lumpy as a camel. Our mom wants to throw it out.

Lavern: Uh-huh. Get up kid.

Benjamin: But-

Lavern: Now.

(BENJAMIN reluctantly gets up and LAVERN pulls the blankets off of SANTA)

Lavern (continued): Oh my Kringle… YOU KILLED SANTA!

Randi: No! No we didn't. He's still alive. I think…

Lavern: You've destroyed Christmas forever!

Benjamin: But… can't they just find someone new to be Santa?

Lavern: This ain't no Tim Allen Move! No Santa means no Christmas. Ever. You two have single handedly wrecked the holidays.

Randi: Well, we didn't know. We thought he was a dangerous criminal so we hit him with our flashlight.

Lavern: You know what, I've heard enough. Park your naughty carcasses on the couch. You're both up to your eyeballs in trouble.

(RANDI sits on couch. BENJAMIN sits on Santa, but a growl from LAVERN sends him to the real couch)

Randi: Wow, for an elf you sure aren't very jolly.

Lavern: Hey, that's Mr. Elf to you. Mr. Lavern L. Persnickety Elf, Head Elf at the Kringle Cooperation in charge of Naughty and Nice identification and filing, toy production supervision, and animal maintenance.

Benjamin: (to RANDI) Animal maintenance?

Randi: It means he shovels reindeer poop.

Lavern: It MEANS I decide who goes on the naughty or nice list, and you two are gonna be so far down on the naughty list when I'm through with you, Genghis Kahn's gonna be wiping his feet on your names. (Pulls out a calculator) Let's see… up past bedtimes. That's worth several years of coal. Then there's snooping around for presents on Christmas Eve…

Randi: I wasn't trying to snoop for presents! I just wanted a picture of Santa so I could show my friend so he'd feel bad for making fun of me.

Lavern: Seeking vengeance through photography, bludgeoning a mythical being….

Randi: We thought he was a burglar!

Lavern: Trying to take law into own hands via vigilante flashlight wielding, insulting an elf, trying to touch his ears, and above all sitting on Santa. By the looks of things you guys won't be seeing another Christmas present as long as you live.

Benjamin (tearfully)But… What about my Pokemon Magenta version, and my Nerf bazooka water gun… What about my choo choo train…?

Lavern: Zilch

Randi: Hang on. If we ruined Christmas doesn't that mean that no one gets any presents? What makes us different than anybody else?

Lavern: Oh yeah. (typing into calculator) Ruining Christmas…

Randi: Hey, you aren't listening. If no one gets presents anyway, then your punishment's invalid. (to BENJAMIN) Got that one right on my vocabulary test.

Lavern: All right then. I'll just have to let your American legal system do the job. We're going to press charges.

Randi: You can't do that! We're just kids.

Lavern: Oh, ho, ho. You think I'm not going to press charges cos you're kids? Just you wait. We elves have excellent lawyers. (pulls out cell phone and dials number) Hello, Ricky? I've got a pair of brats here who need a little lesson taught by the guy who won Miser v. North Pole. Hello? Ugh. (hangs up) Voice mail. Well, come Monday you will be hearing from our lawyers, and I'd pull out all your milk money for this one, because these court charges will be nothing to sneeze at.

(SANTA sneezes)

Lavern (continued): God bless you. Wait a second.

(SANTA slowly sits up)

Benjamin: Santa!

Lavern: Mr. Cause! Are you ok?

Santa: Oh, I'm fine. You know, occupational hazard. Ho, ho, ho.

Lavern: Here, let me help you up.

Santa: No, no, I can manage. (Stands. Takes note of RANDI and BENJAMIN) Well now, what do we have here?

Lavern: Mr. Clause, these kids are responsible for knocking you out.

Santa: Is that so?

Lavern: Yes. And I'm going to leave a message with Ricky right now so we can take some legal action.

Randi: Benjamin had the flash light!

Benjamin: Randi told me to.

Randi: You didn't have to listen.

Santa: Children, children. It is all right. I forgive you.

Lavern: WHAT?

Santa: Oh, come now, Lavern. They're only children.

Lavern: Aw, this isn't gonna be one of those "spirit of the season" pictures, is it?

Santa: Why should forgiveness stop at the season, Lavern?

Lavern: (cut to the quick) I…uh… ah, I hate it when you do that.

Benjamin: (to SANTA) Does this mean we aren't going to get coal for the rest of our lives?

Santa: Of course you won't get coal. After all, you were defending your older sister and your parents' house.

Randi: Wait, how'd you know that?

Santa: There are a lot of things I know, Miranda. Like how you had a bit of a fight with one Joseph Finkler at school on Friday.

Randi: He called me a baby for believing in you still.

Santa: Now that's interesting seeing as I got a letter from him earlier tonight.

Randi: What?

Santa: (Pulling piece of notebook paper from inside of his hat) I found this along with the eggnog and cookies he leaves out for me every year.

Randi: (takes paper and reads it out loud) "Dear, Santa, all I want for Christmas is-" Then there's stuff crossed out. (Squinting at it) "A basketball, a laser light" "I really tried to be good this year" "Look, it really wasn't my fault-"

Santa: Why don't you just skip to the part that's not crossed out?

Randi: "I messed up really bad, Santa. I know I probably won't get any presents this year, but if I get just one, all I want for Christmas is for my friend Randi to like me again."

Benjamin: Aww…

Randi: So, he really is sorry?

Santa: I don't think he needed a picture of me to feel sorry.

Randi: Then why was he so mean to me?

Santa: It's a hard thing, growing up. You have to decide what's true and what isn't. Everyone seems to be growing at a different pace, and yet everyone still wants everyone to be the same as everyone else, so no one knows quite what to be. What's important to remember is that everyone is just as confused as you and sometimes they say things they regret. You just have to keep an open mind and heart and know that they're just trying to find their way themselves. I think you can forgive Mr. Finkler if you think of it that way.

Randi: Even when he acts like a total butt face?

Santa: Even when he acts like the biggest butt face in the world.

Randi: Did Joey get his Christmas presents this year, Santa?

Santa: Hm? I thought you wanted him to get coal in his stocking.

Randi: Not anymore. I want him to get everything he asked for.

Santa: Well, in that case, I think he's off the naughty list. And I think you are too.

Randi: Thanks, Santa.

Lavern: (checking watch) Woah… WOAH! Hey, we've lost too much time, big man. We're running late. We were supposed to be in Nova Scotia fifteen minutes ago!

Santa: Not to worry, Lavern.

Lavern: You say that now, but you won't be saying that when the Missus is yelling at you for stumbling in way past dawn. Let's go! (Exits)

Benjamin: Is he always like that?

Santa: Lavern's heart is in the right place. (confidentially) He's just normally in a bad mood because he has to shovel reindeer droppings.

Lavern: (off) The sleigh's ready to go, Mr. Clause!

Santa: Take care, children. And have a very Merry Christmas. (exits)

Benjamin: Wow.

Randi: Yeah. Wow.

Benjamin: Hey, you never took your picture.

Randi: That's ok. I don't really need a picture of Santa.

Benjamin: So what now? Should we go back to bed before mom and dad wake up?

Randi: Actually… I think it's just past one o' clock in the morning.

Benjamin: So?

Randi: So technically it's Christmas right now.

(Both smile at each other, then run out the way they came. Lights go off on their shouts of, "Mom, dad, wake up. It's Christmas!")

END

A/N: My high school put this one-act on and there is a link to the performance in my profile :)