[The ISS room, around noon. The students are sitting at the regular desks, taking out their lunches.]
[Lee takes out a bento box and a water bottle. Gilbert, Max, Ada & Lex take out lunch boxes. Ian & Ray take out stuff from Wawa. Julie takes out a granola bar. Currie takes out some scavenged food. Max's lunch includes a silver flask and silver grapes.]
RAY: (To Max) You brought Alcohol to school?
MAX: It's Silvey, a fairy drink.
RAY: Ah. Why the flask?
MAX: Because this is the fermented juice (picks up a silver grape) of these fairy grapes. Contains about 1% of the Alcohol of your standard drink. It takes the average person over a gallon on an empty stomach to feel tipsy.
RAY: Uhm. Can I have a sip?
MAX: Depends. Can you handle a liquid 10x more sour than lime juice?
MAX: Then no. (Takes a swig from his flask) If it were Gilvie I might. That's made either from mixing Silvey and Goldie, or fermenting Gilver grape juice. It's basically tastes like regular wine but it doesn't get you drunk as fast.
RAY: What's Goldie?
MAX: The fermented juice of Gold grapes. It's sickly sweet, and the cure for drinking this if you pucker. I don't know how Alice can stomach it.
[Ray & Max may continue their conversation]
JULIE: (Looking at Lee's lunch) What's that?
LEE: Bento box.
JULIE: I know that, but what's in it?
LEE: Well, in mine, there's rice, mixed veggies and salmon.
JULIE: Is it cooked?
LEE: Yes, it's just cold.
[Julie looks at her shifty eyed.]
LEE: Well, what's your lunch? A simple granola bar?
JULIE: It's all I could swipe.
LEE: Mr. Saxer was right.
JULIE: I got it from my Aunt's house. She may be obsessed with Les Mis and to a lesser extent Hamilton, which we both view as a prequel to Les Mis; but, she's the only one who gives a shit about me.
MAX: What about your friends?
LEE: What about your parents?
[Julie laughs out loud, causing everyone to look at her weird.]
MAX: You ok?
JULIE: My parents don't give a shit about me. In fact, they view me as less than shit.
CURRIE: They can't be that bad.
JULIE: Currie, do you know what a typical day in my house is?
JULIE: Let me show you. (Gets up and preps for her performance)
(As her dad) Where's that worthless, freeloading, irresponsible mistake of ours?
(As her mom) Probably making more mistakes for us to take care of.
(As herself) Just got home from spending time with Aunt T and my friends.
(As her dad) I don't know why my sister spends so much time on you, or why your friends spend time with you. You're so stupid and lazy!
(As her mom) You forgot ugly and devil spawn!
(As her dad) Shut up bitch! (slams her hand back to hit her invisible mom) Focus on dinner!
(As herself) What about you Dad?
(As her dad) Go to your room!
(As herself) What about dinner Dad?
(As her dad) Fuck you!
(As herself) What about my nutrition?
(As her dad-louder) Fuck you!
(As herself-yelling) What about me?!
(As her dad-yelling) Fuck you!
[Julie reaches out and pretend she's her father hitting her.]
CURRIE: Is that for real?
JULIE: You want to come over some time?
JULIE: Oh, the pristine lady curses?
LEE: (Glares at Julie) It's all a part of your image. I don't believe a single word of it.
[Julie looks genuinely hurt.]
JULIE: You don't believe me?
LEE: Did I stutter?
[Julie walks over to Lee and takes off her jacket and roles up her right sleeve to reveal burn marks, scars and cuts on her arm. She shows them to Lee.]
JULIE: See these? Do you believe these? (Points to a circular shaped burn) This one's about the size of a cigar… Do I stutter?
JULIE: You see, in my house, that's what you get for asking your parents to sign a permission slip. (Points to another burn) And this one looks like a fire poker. Ya know what I did?
LEE: Back talking?
JULIE: No, (points to a cut) this is what you get for back talking. Cut with a knife. (Reminiscing) Man I miss the days when I would just get a welt. (Points to the burn again) This is what you get for forgetting to use fire starters when setting up the wood in the fire place! And at my Aunt's house, if you don't want to listen to, or watch Les Mis for the hundredth time, ya get smacked. One time she dislocated my shoulder, but she apologized. My parents never do.
LEE: I… I didn't know. I'm…
JULIE: Save your breath. You don't really care. You were just proven wrong, and just need to clear your conscience.
[Julie begins to walk away.]
LEE: No… it's not like that.
[Julie brushes Lee off.]
JULIE: (To Max) And as for friends, we only hang out with each other so we have something to do with another human being who's not directly related to us.
CURRIE: (Quietly) That sounds like my friends.
[Currie catches the attention of Julie, who goes to sit next to Currie and looks at her lunch.]
JULIE: You went dumpster diving?
JULIE: (Picking up a moldy orange) Looks like you did.
CURRIE: It's not completely inedible. It's just a little mold.
JULIE: You poor?
CURRIE: No. Middle class.
JULIE: Parents hate wasting food?
CURRIE: Yes. And they're also pretty strict.
JULIE: I doubt they're worse than mine.
CURRIE: I guess not. I mean, your parents punish you for no reason. Mine punish me for getting bad grades.
JULIE: (Joking) By starvation?
[Currie looks away, ashamed.]
JULIE: Either I offended you, or something's not right at home.
[Currie curls up in her seat and buries her head in her lap, and soon begins to cry. Ada, Max, Ian, Gilbert & Ray get up and comfort her.]
ADA: (To Julie) Will you lay off her? I know you have a bad home life, but still. You shouldn't project your anger onto others, and you should tell the authorities.
IAN: Yeah, just because they're corruptible doesn't mean you can't trust them. And can't you see that she's upset?
JULIE: One, (To Ian) your first statement doesn't make sense. (To Ada & Ian) Two, like the authorities care. All they'll do is drag out the process, put me in a foster home, no matter how much I beg to be with my Aunt, and my parents will say I did this to myself. Three, I want to get to the bottom of this.
RAY: Bottom of what? She could just be going through though times and doesn't want to admit it.
IAN: Yeah. You know that sickens me. The fact that being poor and getting help is somehow "shameful". Not everyone can be rich!
ADA: I know! That's why my parents refuse to get charity, even though we clearly need it.
JULIE: Ok, we're getting off topic here.
GILBERT: What was the topic?
JULIE: Currie's potential abuse.
GILBERT: Why would you assume that?
JULIE: The signs are obvious. Trashy food, getting upset when I mention there being a problem at home, and didn't you notice her reactions?
ADA: Well, I do admit that they are questionable. You shouldn't push.
JULIE: How else are we going to get her to tell?
[They all look awkwardly at each other.]
JULIE: I thought so.
LEE: Why do you care?
JULIE: Because I don't want anyone else to end up like my friend Bones.
JULIE: That's what we called him. His real name was worse. His parents were a lot like mine, but he didn't have a family member he could go to. All he had was his friends, and we could only do so much. But that wasn't enough.
[Julie looks sadly at the floor. Lee goes near Julie, she tries to comfort, but is hesitant. Eventually she gives up.]
IAN: Never knew you could be so caring.
JULIE: Hey, I know I can be uncaring and shit, but, I'm also human.
IAN: I know that. I was actually talking to Lee.
[Julie turns around to face Lee.]
IAN: I saw you try to comfort Julie. Never thought I'd see you comfort anyone. Or at the very least, anyone outside your circle.
LEE: Yeah, well, you shouldn't be quick to judge.
[Everyone stares at Lee, making her feel uncomfortable.]
CURRIE: She's right.
[Everyone stares at Currie.]
CURRIE: No, you. I…I've never told anyone. I was afraid to. My friends never noticed, or at least they never pried. Most of our time together was in a study group, or something school related. I don't want to end up in a foster home.
MAX: You can stay with me. You'll have to deal with my parents, but still.
MAX: Yeah. They're already foster parents. (To Lee) And for your information, Rita is just my sister. We're not dating! We're just close. Besides, I already have a girlfriend. Her name is Grace and she's homeschooled. (Takes out a photo) Here's her picture.
[Max rolls his eyes and puts the photo away.]
RAY: Currie, if things don't work out with Max, I'm sure I can get my foster dad to take you in.
CURRIE: Thanks, to both of you.
IAN: I'd offer you a place to stay, but my dad's an ass.
LEE: Really? He seems quite pleasant.
IAN: You haven't seen him behind closed doors. He's a racist, homophobic bigot. He's ashamed of me because of my views. I even have two social media accounts, one with my real name, and one with a fake name, just so I can avoid his wrath. The only close family member I've come out to is my sister.
RAY: Come out?
RAY: I'm Bi.
JULIE: So am I.
ADA: Like your namesake?
JULIE: Oui. My Aunt is a wonderful name-giver.
JULIE: Julie d'Aubigny.
GILBERT: She's the best swordswoman opera singer.
[Julie, Lee, Currie & Lex look at Ada.]
ADA: It was just a hunch.
GILBERT: What was a hunch?
ADA: Just something we were talking about in the bathroom.
GILBERT: Oh, ok.
LEX: My uncle's a lawyer.
[Everyone stares in shock at Lex.]
MAX: (In utter disbelief) You spoke.
GILBERT: Without being prompted.
LEX: I can talk whenever I want.
[Julie eyes Lex.]
LEX CONT.: (To Currie) My Uncle's a lawyer, he can help you Currie.
LEX: Yes, really. And he's very supportive, more than my parents, who can't accept that there's a third gender.
CURRIE: So, he can help me choose my own foster home?
LEX: It might take a while, but he can.
CURRIE: Thank you!
[Currie gets up and hugs Lex, taking them by surprise.]
LEX: Woah there.
CURRIE: Sorry, I just… never thought that there could be people, whom I barely know, who could be this nice to me.
LEX: Well, you're in luck.
CURRIE: This is wonderful! But, can we call after detention?
CURRIE: Well, it's just that… I told my parents that I was going to the library. They have no idea that I'm here.
MAX: Why didn't you tell them?
CURRIE: Because. My parents told me that if I ever got a detention, the punishment would be worse than an F.
MAX: What's the punishment for an F?
CURRIE: Beaten, grounded, and forced to live in my tree house. The only food being what I can scavenge or grow. Not even allowed to step foot inside the house until grades improve. For a B, I'm just beaten. For a C, Beaten and grounded until my grades improve. For a D, beaten, grounded and starved until my grades improve.
CURRIE: Well, not really. I've managed to store and grow food in my tree house. And my friends don't mind me eating at their house, or staying the night. My parents either don't care, or think I'm studying.
MAX: That's a terrible life to live. When I get a bad grade, all I get is a deduction of my allowance.
CURRIE: Well, we can't all be fairies.
MAX: I wasn't born like this. I was just… turned into this because of pity.
MAX: Long story.
JULIE: (Looking at the clock) Well, we've got time to kill.
MAX: Well, ok. Rita's birth mom, Ms. Rachel, or Doña Rachel, took pity on my bio sis, Alice, because of her shity life, and this was the only timeline she could help her out, due to different timelines not being able to touch and stuff. And while she was putting her plan in motion, I was born, with the wrong soul. And there are only two cures: soul exchange, which is risky, not to mention they'd have to find a dragon who was born with a human soul in order for the operation to be considered; and turning me into something else.
CURRIE: A fairy?
MAX: For nothing at all, unless you count being a human being born with a dragon soul, and the only candidate got murdered. When I was five, I was transformed. I wasn't told until I asked what heroic thing I did to be granted the honor of being turned into a fairy. My whole life has been affected by a fairy pitying my biological sister!
LEX: You're saying it like it's a bad thing.
MAX: It's not bad. But, I would like to have personally known a life without magic, like Alice, and you guys. The few memories I have are nothing. I always had Rita, and her family. They were born like that.
JULIE: Trust us, you're not missing out.
MAX: Yeah, well, I guess everyone always want what they can't have, or never had.
LEX: I feel like this has turned into group therapy.
RAY: You're not the only one.
JULIE: Yeah, I haven't confessed like this, like, ever.
ADA: So… now what?
GILBERT: I have no idea. You guys?
MAX: Lee and Ian calmly talk out their problems?
IAN & LEE: No way!
MAX: Come on! You already fought each other! You're anger should be almost nonexistent! In Fayland, after fighting out your anger with the creature you have beef with, or letting it pass, you talk your problems out!
CURRIE: Fairies seem violent.
MAX: Hey, it's hard to have a decent conversation with someone when all you want to do is punch them. Also, grudges are unhealthy.
RAY: It's true. Learned that the hard way.
IAN & LEE: Fine. But I'm going first. No me! No me!
MAX: (Eyes gain amber flecks. Yelling) Enough! (Calmer and maybe no flecks) Coin flip or "rock, paper, scissors."
IAN: (At the same time as Lee) Rock, paper, scissors.
LEE: (At the same time as Ian) Coin flip.
MAX: Ok. We'll do… coin flip. (Takes out a coin) Call it.
IAN & LEE: Heads! Tails! Stop saying the same thing as me!
MAX: Never mind. We'll just do "Rock, paper, scissors".
[Lee & Ian play "rock paper scissors". They keep getting the same gestures. They keep on getting frustrated.]
RAY: (Stepping between them) Alright! (They calm down) I'm thinking of a number between 1 and 10.
RAY: 4. Ian goes first.
LEE: Damn it!
IAN: Ha! Ok, well, Lee, I get that you're upset with Mr. Kennedy, but that doesn't mean you should curse him out in front of the whole school! How would you feel if you were just doing your job, then one of your subordinates says in front of everyone that you're terrible at it in front of everyone?
LEE: I see your point, but he didn't give my friends detention, he didn't even suspend them! He just got me in trouble! I know I was the only one who got caught, but still. They tried to get me out, but was their punishment like mine? No! They hardly got punished!
IAN: Uh, you're so-called "friends", didn't fully own up.
LEE: Would you?
LEE: Didn't you say that your dad was an ass?
IAN: Well, he is, but, I put my friends first. Or, I try to at least.
LEE: I think I made my point.
IAN: Well, since you said that you're ok with your friends not owning up-
LEE: I didn't say it.
IAN: Yes you did.
RAY: He's right.
LEE: You're twisting my words!
IAN: Are we?
[Lee tries to defend herself, but fails and grows frustrated.]
JULIE: Don't worry, she'll come around.
IAN: I doubt it.
JULIE: Stranger things have happened.
[Stage darkens. It relights to reveal everyone sitting in a circle at 1:30. Ada & Gilbert are sitting next to each other, being very comfy with each other. Next to Gilbert are Ian & Ray, who are cuddling. Lee is sitting across from Ian. Currie is sitting in or near Lex's lap.]
GILBERT: Let's see… Drive naked.
GILBERT: Oui. I don't want to risk an allergic reaction, so being naked in a car doesn't sound so bad.
ADA: Ok, now you ask someone.
GILBERT: Ok, Lee.
GILBERT: Would you rather eat a large ball of pure fat-
GILBERT: -or stand on a table during lunch and saying that Mr. Kennedy is the best?
IAN: Guess you're not really sorry.
LEE: Hey, I've got a rep to keep.
LEE: So, I can't ruin my image by publicly saying that I, a member of the 10% of New Wales's upper class who isn't part of the Benefactor's Society, is a whining, softy brat!
JULIE: You're already seen as that.
[Lee throws something at Julie, who dodges.]
JULIE: Just saying the truth.
LEE: Yeah, well, I don't want to add fuel to the fire.
MAX: Well, if you did apologize, you'd be seen as a better person.
RAY: Yeah, if you do something wrong, you should own up to it.
LEE: I know that. But it's hard.
JULIE: Life wasn't meant to be easy.
LEE: I know, but, still. (Pulls out phone) I'll just e-mail him.
RAY: (While Lee is on her phone) You know, it'll make a bigger impact if you apologize in person.
LEE: I can just send an audio file.
[Lee is stared at, making her uncomfortable.]
LEE: Stop staring at me. This is just what I'm comfortable with. Surely you can understand that.
MAX: We do, but you need to apologize in person. We can help you.
ADA: Yeah, we can meet you in the halls, outside the class or in the class.
LEE: You don't have him.
RAY: I do.
IAN: And me.
GILBERT: And me.
LEE: Well, would you want to be seen in the halls with me? Any of you? Because, to be honest, I don't.
JULIE: Why? Are we too lowly to be seen with a royal princess?
LEE: You're not lowly, it's just, well, (sighs) you know that certain social groups don't mix! Sure the school acts like everyone's one big happy family, but it's only true on the surface. Even if it goes deeper, it's not by much. I mean, look at Max's group and the Jeans! Or The Society and The Elites.
ADA: Uh, do you know of any other schools where one can be an honor student theater geek jock and not be bullied?
ADA: And here.
RAY: It's true, the world's opening up. I know of multiple schools where that's the case. It's not every school, but it's more than you think.
IAN: He's right.
MAX: Yeah, I mean, look at me and my family. We're history buff science nerds who love gaming, martial arts, fencing, the stage, everything. And we're not bullied. Then again, no one dares to mess with Rita.
RAY: And I tend to float around multiple social circles. I'm even a part of a few.
IAN: Even mine. Although, we tend to hang with different people.
RAY: (To Ian) Do you even know how popular you are? Everyone knows you, and have very few bad things to say.
IAN: Guess that's good.
JULIE: Anyway, (to Lee) you should have the courage to stick up to your friends. So what if you hang with us? You don't need them.
LEE: That may be true for you, but not for me! They could ruin my life with social media and gossip. And also, my parents want me to be just like them, if I hang, or date anyone they don't approve of, I'm out!
JULIE: You're under 18.
LEE: So? That doesn't mean they can't leave me behind at home during family trips, or parties. They can still ground me and take away my stuff. And if my friends tell them that I call you lot my friends, or apologize to a man they see as someone who can't be put in charge of anything, then…
[Lee throws her stuff and tries to hide.]
MAX: Hey, not all of us like our parents. And not all of us have ideal home lives; I live in two separate homes. Well, I mostly live with Rita's birth family because they actually give us allowances, and honestly, they treat me better.
LEE: How? Cause they give you money?
MAX: That's hard earned. I mean, homework, good grades, being on time, good behavior during lessons and meals. Also, I feel like I belong there. Even when I was just a human. It's hard to put into words.
MAX: Yeah. And since Alice graduated, things have just gotten worse with our parents. I mean, their marriage is in shambles, Mom continues to treat her kids like nurses and therapists that she can boss around, and well... you get the picture.
Max: So I've got baggage? So what?
RAY: My dad's a deadbeat. He gave up all rights to me and my brother after Mom and her cousin died. We've been put into separate foster homes since.
IAN: That's rough.
RAY: It's not so bad. I mean, me we keep in touch. And my foster homes haven't been bad. I even feel like they're actual family, which is crazy.
MAX: Why? I view Rita as my sister. And she views me as a brother, she even calls Alice "Mama".
MAX: Cause she wants to. And sometimes I feel like, her birth family is our foster family. I mean, they practically raised me and Alice under our parents noses.
JULIE: What do you call them?
MAX: (Like it's obvious) Their names.
JULIE: Ok. Now let's get back to what we were talking about before.
CURRIE: "Would you Rather?" or Lee?
LEE: Can we not?
[Lee rolls her eyes.]
JULIE: Look, this needs addressing.
[Lee writes and sends an email while ignores the others.]
IAN: She ain't gonna talk.
JULIE: Guess you're right.
ADA: What time is it?
GILBERT: (Looking at clock) 1:38.
ADA: So we've got less than an hour and a half. So, now what do we do?
LEX: Well we could -
CURRIE: No. I told you I want to wait until after detention.
LEX: Well this should be reported as soon as possible.
CURRIE: I know, but, it's just so hard. They're still my parents.
JULIE: (To Currie) Look, they may have made you, but you shouldn't put them on a pedestal.
CURRIE: I'm not.
JULIE: You're acting like it.
CURRIE: Well, it's quite natural to form attachments to those who take care of you.
JULIE: (Think the matter over) True, but they ain't doing a good job.
CURRIE: Can we please just leave this alone until 3?
ADA: We have things to do afterwards.
LEX: I don't.
JULIE: I might. My friends haven't gotten back to me yet.
MAX: What about your Aunt?
MAX: What she do?
JULIE: Secretary for some business guy.
LEE: She has to work on a Saturday?
JULIE: The common workweek isn't Monday-Friday anymore.
LEE: For everyone?
JULIE: Are you seriously that out of touch?
LEE: No, it's just that doing work on a Saturday that's not housework, leftover work or charity work is bizarre to me.
JULIE: Ever been to a mall?
LEE: That's shopping, there's a difference.
JULIE: How is ringing people up and dealing with them and their bullshit any different than doing paperwork and dealing with clients?
LEE: What I meant was that with most businesses, well, the ones that need secretaries, the work week is Monday-Friday, 9-5.
JULIE: Maybe the ones your familiar with, but not everyone.
LEE: Guess I'm corrected.
JULIE: Look who's improving.
[Lee rolls her eyes.]
MAX: So what now?
LEX: Well as a friendless queer I consider you all my friends. Even Lee.
LEX: What? You're the friend that no one likes.
LEE: Stop that! How you feel if I laughed at you!
LEX: Relax, I'm just teasing!
LEE: Teasing? You hardly talk the entire morning, then suddenly when it's the afternoon you're teasing?
LEX: Your point is?
IAN: You tease everyone else, so why can't we tease you?
[Lee tries to smartly reply, but fails. She goes back to her desk and sits down with her arms crossed.]
GILBERT: So, if we're all friends, how to we keep the friendship alive? Cause I talk with my girlfriend everyday.
ADA: (Disappointed, but trying to hide it) You have a girlfriend?
GILBERT: Oui. Thought I mentioned her. She wanted to come to the U.S., but her parents wouldn't let her.
ADA: (As she's moving away from Gilbert.) Oh.
GILBERT: (Taking Ada's hand) I still like you. My relationship status shouldn't dictate who my friends can be.
ADA: I know.
MAX: I have an idea.
MAX: Why don't we all audition for the musical.
[The other students speak over each other.]
LEE: Absolutely not!
CURRIE: I get stage fright.
ADA: I'm too busy!
GILBERT: I'm not fluent in English.
JULIE: Not unless it's rock, punk or hip-hop.
IAN: I can't hide it from my dad.
RAY: I can't sing.
LEX: I'm not an actor.
[Max blows a whistle, shutting everyone up.]
MAX: The musical's Les Mis.
MAX: It's not that bad. Besides, (To Julie) you would be a great Thénardier.
JULIE: I see your point, but I don't think it's for me. I'm tired of it, but knowing my Aunt, she'll either make me watch it or be in it.
MAX: Be in it. I dare you.
JULIE: You dare me?
JULIE: Then I accept. I don't back down from dares.
LEE: What if you were dared to drink poison?
JULIE: Then I wouldn't do it.
LEE: I thought you didn't back down from dares?
JULIE: Depends on the dare.
LEE: You are full of contradictions.
JULIE: Je connais.
MAX: (Changing the subject) Now Ray, everyone can sing.
RAY: Not me.
MAX: Maybe at the moment, but I can fix that.
RAY: You're gonna cast a spell on me?
MAX: I was thinking more along the lines of a potion, but I can find a spell.
RAY: We can talk later.
CURRIE: Can you cure stage fright?
MAX: Sure. I can whip ya up a potion in time for auditions.
CURRIE: Thank you. I've always wanted to be fearless in front of a crowd, but never could.
MAX: It just takes practice.
CURRIE: I guess.
MAX: Now Ian, how is your dad about you being dared?
IAN: (Catching his drift) I guess he would be fine, but I don't want to tell him unless I have to.
LEE: You might.
IAN: Don't you dare squeal!
LEE: I won't. I'm just saying.
IAN: Well, how about I dare you to audition too?
LEE: I'll rat you out.
IAN: Oh yeah? Well you gave away a lot during your chat with Charlie.
LEE: You wouldn't dare.
IAN: You rat me out, I rat you out.
LEE: Fine. I won't tell. But I'm still not joining the musical.
RAY: Why? Everyone loves musicians. Don't you listen to music?
LEE: Yeah. But that's different than being a theater geek.
JULIE: Theater geek? Seriously? This is New Wales. In 2022. Come up with a better excuse.
LEE: Fine! I'll join the musical. After all, it was a big hit when it became a movie.
JULIE: And you said I was inconsistent.
[Lee rolls her eyes.]
ADA: I'm still too busy. School days are: getting my siblings ready for school; coming here on time because I'm not a bus student; doing school work; practice because I need a scholorship; going home and helping out with the chores and doing my homework before going to work. And while I'm at work, which is either Dad's restaurant or my other job, I have to squeeze in homework time. And on weekends, I have to squeeze in sibling care, friends, sports and work. I can't prance around a stage singing One Day More.
MAX: I see your point.
LEX: You can still see it.
ADA: The preview. But not the whole thing.
MAX: Who do you work for?
ADA: Random businus.
MAX: Well, since you're friends with some Society members you can pull some strings. Maybe even get us a sponsor.
ADA: I'm not using my friends to get off work. No matter how many times they tell me to loosen up.
MAX: Well, this could be your chance.
ADA: I'll consider it, but I'm not making any promises.
MAX: (To Ada) Ok. (To Lex) So Lex, you don't have to act. You can just join the production crew.
LEX: I'm not trusted with hammers, or anything that can be used as a weapon.
MAX: That means your not trusted with anything.
LEX: Exactly. Although I am allowed writing materials.
MAX: I think we can work around that.
LEX: Ok, but if they kick me off, you've been warned.
MAX: (To Lex) Ok. (To Gilbert & Currie) Same for you two, you can be part of the production.
GILBERT: Sounds interesting. Although I think I'll consider auditioning.
MAX: Great! So Ian, are you definitely joining? We can work something out so your dad doesn't find out.
IAN: Uh, ok.
[Ray passionately hugs Ian. They stare at each other lovingly.]
JULIE: Just kiss already!
RAY & IAN: (Blushing) What?
JULIE: We have eyes. We saw you two over the past hour and a half. And for some, the past 4 ½ hours.
GILBERT: True. And Ian, you never did answer Max's question.
IAN: I didn't?
GILBERT: Your secret's safe with us. Right Lee?
LEE: (Holding up both her hands) Right.
IAN: (Blushing) Well, uh, I uh.
MAX: Wait, (reaches into bag) I think I have a truth serum in here. Or I can do a truth spell, or something deus ex machina.
IAN: I can answer by myself.
MAX: So do it.
IAN: Uh, ok. (Sighs) I was blushing.
MAX: Knew it.
JULIE: Will you kiss now?
ADA: Will you lay off?
RAY: So, Ian, what are you doing after detention?
RAY: Wanna go to the movies?
IAN: Sure! I can pay for both of us.
RAY: Thanks, but I can pay for my own ticket.
IAN: Ok. What movie do you wanna see?
RAY: Well, I hear there's some Disney movies out.
IAN: We can watch one of them.
JULIE: You make a cute couple.
IAN: Just don't tell my dad, or his cronies.
JULIE: I won't. On purpose.
IAN: Ok. Shit, I should text him.
RAY: (As Ian's texting) About our date?
IAN: (While texting) I'm just telling him I'm going to the movies. He doesn't need to know the details.
RAY: Have you done this before?
IAN: Yes. Not much though. I'd love to be open, but, my dad wouldn't like that.
RAY: What would he do?
IAN: Anything. Cut me off; ground me; send me away; disown me as soon as possible. You name it.
RAY: He is an ass.
IAN: Yeah, but I've got a plan. Study medicine and become a successful doctor or dentist. Then I won't need my dad.
LEE: Doesn't your dad want you to study business?
IAN: Yeah, but there's scholarships. And I can always take out a loan. And if I join the military, I can use the GI Bill.
RAY: You clearly thought ahead.
IAN: Yeah. Why wouldn't I?
RAY: I have a hard time doing that.
IAN: I heard.
CURRIE: So now what?
JULIE: Well it's 2:00.
ADA: (Sighing) What to do?
MAX: I think we did everything.
GILBERT: Did we all exchange numbers?
ADA: Not all of us.
[Stage darkens. Stage relights to 2:30. Everyone is sitting and on their phones.]
JULIE: So I got all your numbers and social media.
MAX: So do I.
RAY: And me.
IAN: And me.
GILBERT: And me.
CURRIE: And me.
ADA: And me.
LEX: And me.
CURRIE: Well for you it was easy.
LEX: Well we don't need social media.
RAY: True, but's good for keeping in touch with people you don't see that much. Still looking for my dad though.
IAN: He left you.
RAY: I want to give him a piece of my mind.
IAN: I don't blame you.
JULIE: I don't think anyone would.
[Saxer enters the room. The students quickly get back to their desks.]
SAXER: Well, since detention's almost over, I thought I'd better come in here to make sure you all behaved.
JULIE: Saxie, there are cameras and thorns. We're gonna behave.
SAXER: Like I would believe you.
JULIE: That hurts.
SAXER: Watch your mouth.
JULIE: We all know you're out of here after the school year's over.
RAY: Yeah, school's finally had enough of you.
SAXER: So what if I tend to be "overly harsh" and "Greatly feared".
MAX: It's not the 80's.
CURRIE: Or the 50's.
SAXER: Looks like someone found their voice.
CURRIE: I have. And about my tardiness, you should find out soon.
SAXER: Right now?
CURRIE: Next week.
LEX: What about tomorrow?
CURRIE: Tomorrow is next week. In the U.S., Sunday is the first day of the week.
SAXER: I see being a smart alec is contagious.
JULIE: What isn't contagious?
JULIE: Don't trees reproduce?
[Saxer rolls his eyes. Lee takes out her phone and uses it underneath her desk.]
SAXER: Well after I retire, I'll be free from you delinquents.
JULIE: You view all kids as delinquents.
SAXER: Well they are. If you don't give them the proper discipline, they'll be no good thieving criminals!
SAXER: It's true.
MAX: Haven't you heard the phrase, "You'll catch more flies with honey than with vinegar"?
SAXER: That's just a saying.
MAX: But it's true. Positive reinforcement works better than negative reinforcement. And it's more humane.
SAXER: (Muttering) Stupid rules.
MAX: No wonder you're forced to retire.
SAXER: That's more detention for you.
SAXER: Back talking.
MAX: How is that back talking?
SAXER: You were being disrespectful.
MAX: Freedom of speech. I ain't causing mass panic/harm.
SAXER: This is a school, and ain't isn't a word.
MAX: Anything can be a word, it just needs a meaning that can be understood. Also, I was just speaking my mind.
SAXER: I can still give you detention.
MAX: And I can appeal to the Principle. Who hates your guts.
SAXER: Fuck you!
JULIE: Oo! A Vice Principle cursing at a student! If it weren't the 1,000th time you did it, I'd be more shocked.
SAXER: Not the thousandth.
JULIE: Seems like it.
LEE: (Aside) They have no idea I'm recording this.
SAXER: Look, I don't like kids. And you all should consider yourselves lucky that I'm not doing worse to you.
MAX: Like beating us?
MAX: Most of us can fight back, including me. And I am a red belt who's been training in the art of combat since I was five.
RAY: And you did say there were cameras.
IAN: Which can be hacked and posted on the internet, or sent to a news outlet, or the police.
JULIE: And you'd be fired, not retired.
ADA: Which would hurt you publicly and financially.
[Saxer hits the air. He angrily looks at the clock.]
SAXER: It's three now. Pack up and get out of my sight!
STUDENTS: (Saluting?) Yes sir.
[Saxer goes to the teacher's desk and the students pack up. When done, Ada & Lex go to Currie.]
ADA: (To Currie) Ready?
CURRIE: Don't you have work?
ADA: It can wait.
CURRIE: You sure?
ADA: At the moment, you're more important.
CURRIE: Thank you!
LEX: I already let my uncle know.
CURRIE: You did?
LEX: Yep. Told me what to do.
CURRIE: Can we go outside?
[Ada, Currie & Lex exit. On their way out, Ada goes to Gilbert.]
ADA: See you tomorrow?
GILBERT: Yeah. Noon?
ADA: Noon. Mall food court.
GILBRT: See you then. Good luck.
ADA, CURRIE & LEX: Thanks.
[Ada, Currie & Lex exit.]
GILBERT: (To Ray & Ian) We still on for laser tag tomorrow afternoon?
RAY & IAN: Yeah.
GILBERT: Great. See you then.
RAY & IAN: See you.
RAY: (To Ian) So how are we getting to the movies?
IAN: The closet one is in walking distance.
RAY: It's about a mile away!
IAN: Quarter mile.
[Ray & Ian are about to leave.]
LEE: Ian, wait.
IAN: (To Lee) What?
LEE: I just wanted to say, I'm truly sorry for my actions today, and yesterday. I really do need new friends.
IAN: Well you have eight potential ones.
LEE: (Extending her hand) Friends?
IAN: (Looks at her hand, then takes it) Friends.
IAN: No problem.
JULIE: Well someone's become a better person.
LEE: People change.
JULIE: You gonna hang with your prissy friends?
LEE: We already made plans. It be rude to suddenly change them.
RAY: Gonna find a way to get rid of them?
LEE: I'll try. It'll probably take a while. And we do have history.
JULIE: Don't worry. Everything will turn out fine. Probably.
[Lee, Julie, Ray & Ian exit. Ray & Ian are holding hands.]
MAX: So Mr. Saxer, guess you were wrong about us.
SAXER: What do you mean?
MAX: You're old school, and only see us as you want to. But we're more than that, and you're almost out of a job.
SAXER: So? You're just a bunch of kids.
MAX: Says you. But kids can do amazing things, and there are times when we possess more common sense than adults.
SAXER: Name one time!
MAX: The march on Washington back in 2018.
SAXER: Dumb kids.
MAX: Believe what you want, but they were successful. (Phone vibrates, Max checks it) And there's my mom.
[Saxer glares at Max.]
MAX: Well, bye.
SAXER: Stupid kids. It's like they weren't even punished. Detentions sure aren't what they used to be.
[Saxer exits while shaking his head.]