The Body by Samantha Rivera

Characters

Jasmine (Jaz) – Older sister

Chloe (Chlo) – Younger sister

Frank – The body

The set shows rooms throughout the house. On the bottom floor, you can see a living room that leads into a kitchen. There are stairs going up from the living room into a hallway. You can see into two bedrooms on the second floor and parts of the hallway upstairs. There are two more doors on the other side of the hallway opposite the audience leading to a bedroom and a bathroom. Bedroom 3 is one that the audience can see into.

Scene I

It’s 3 am and the girls are cleaning the mess from the Christmas party. Both are in the upstairs hallway. 

CHLOE: And a 12 and a 13 and a 14 and a 15— I bet I’ve got more than you.

JASMINE: Jokes on you because I was smart and grabbed a bag.

CHLOE: Cheater, where’s your sense of adventure?

JASMINE: My sense of adventure is supposed to stem from me wanting to carry armfuls of trash instead of using a bag? No thanks.

CHLOE: Well, if you’re gonna use a bag then scope out the bedrooms while I finish the hallway. I think we kept people out of them pretty well this time.

Jasmine goes on and off-screen going into rooms throughout the hallway.

JASMINE: Bedroom 1: Clear

Bedroom 2: Clear enough

Bathroom: Not dealing with the mysterious liquid on the floor right now.

Bedroom 3: uhhhh. HEY CHLOE, can you come here? 

Chloe turns towards the bedroom Jasmine is in and stops cleaning.

CHLOE: Why?

JASMINE: (muttering)  Is he—oh god. Oh god oh god oh god. 

There are sounds of Jasmine vomiting.

CHLOE: Gross,Jaz! You’re cleaning that up. 

Why did you call me— OHMYGOD WHO IS THAT?

Chloe drops all the trash she was collecting in her arms.

There is the body of a man halfway under the bed soaking in a puddle of red. 

JASMINE: Oh, I don’t know, let me ASK HIM!

CHLOE: Do you recognize him? I didn’t invite him. Ew, I smell your puke now! Check his wallet.

JASMINE: Chill! I can’t keep up with you when you talk like that, my head hurts. 

CHLOE: That’s your own fault.

JASMINE: Oh shut up. Is he breathing?

CHLOE: I don’t know, check.

JASMINE: Why me? I can barely see straight—is that blood?

CHLOE: Where?

OHMYGOD IT IS! 

Look, it’s spread under the bed, oh god that’s gonna be a pain to clean up.

JASMINE: There’s a bleeding, probably dead man on our floor. And you’re worried. About. THE MESS?

Jasmine bends down to check his pockets for a wallet.

CHLOE: Mom and dad will be home in like 4 hours. If the mess isn’t cleaned up, there will be three dead bodies in our house. 

JASMINE: Ahah! I found his wallet, let’s see here, I can’t read that.

CHLOE: Give. 

Frank Marisko. I don’t know him.

JASMINE: I wouldn’t recognize our parents right now so…

CHLOE: Helpful.

JASMINE: Nyehh.

CHLOE: Can you at least see if he’s actually dead?

JASMINE: Oh, hell no. You can do that part. I found the wallet.

CHLOE: I am NOT leaving my fingerprints anywhere on his body.

JASMINE: Oh, so I can go to jail but not you?

CHLOE: I have more of my life left to live, you’re old.

JASMINE: Ah yes, the difference of two years means I’m ready to die in jail. I’ve lived a full life.

CHLOE: Yeah yeah yeah, whine about your sad wrinkly ass in jail. Check his pulse. 

JASMINE: Can’t we just poke him with a stick and see if he wakes up?

CHLOE: And get in trouble for damaging a dead body?

JASMINE: You literally have no idea what you’re talking about.  

There’s nothing.

CHLOE: Try his neck.

JASMINE: Gross, it’s a dead body

CHLOE: So he won’t mind. 

JASMINE: Ew, his hair is sweaty.

CHLOE: Roll him over.

JASMINE: No.

CHLOE: Aw c’mon! We can see if we know him by looking at his face. 

JASMINE: Fine.

Ew, there’s more blood.

OhmygodChloe!

CHLOE: You can’t find it?

JASMINE: What? No. I haven’t checked yet. I touched the blood, and it’s cold. There is cold blood. In the carpet. And I just put my hand in it. 

CHLOE: Why are you complaining? You’re full of blood too.

JASMINE: So are you, but I don’t see you down here touching the body.

CHLOE: That’s because I’m allergic.

JASMINE: To what? Blood? Sorry to tell you but you would be long dead if that was the case. 

CHLOE: Who says I’m not? Who says we aren’t all dead? Who says we were ever even alive?

JASMINE: You know, I actually had an interesting theory about this earlier tonight. What if—

CHLOE: We found a body but you were too afraid to see if it was alive or dead so we stood around and when the police come they’ll think we did it because we stood here and did nothing with it for like an hour because you were too stubborn to touch its neck.

JASMINE: False, that is so off-topic. Why’re you so lame?

Chloe gives Jasmine a look that says I-can’t-handle-you-right-now-and-if-you-don’t-touch-the-neck-of-that-dead-body-in-the-next-thirty-seconds-so-help-me-god-you’ll-join-him.

JASMINE: Alright alright. Jeez. Don’t get your panties in a twist; I’m checking.

Jasmine struggles to check his pulse, nearly falling on the body.

There’s nothing. I feel absolutely nothing.

CHLOE: Do you even know how to check for a pulse?

JASMINE: Yes! I’m not stupid!

CHLOE: That’s debatable seeing as you’re checking his pulse by pushing on his chin.

JASMINE: That’s how you check, you push into their neck under their chin.

CHLOE: Yeah, on the side. Not in the middle.

JASMINE: Oh. Whoops! My bad. 

CHLOE: Do you feel anything?

JASMINE: No.

CHLOE: Crap. Uhhhhh, ummmmm, uhhhhhh

JASMINE: Are you just going to keep making noises or help me?

CHLOE: And do what?

JASMINE: Let’s take him downstairs so we can keep cleaning, and he’ll be out of the way.

CHLOE: And what? Prop him up on the couch so it looks like he’s just chillin’ while we work?

JASMINE: That’s actually a pretty good id—

CHLOE: We can’t do that.

JASMINE: Yes, we can. And yes, we will. Grab his legs.

CHLOE: Why can’t we just call the cops? We didn’t do anything wrong, and we can just explain that we were checking to see if he was breathing, that’s the only reason we touched him.

JASMINE: There are so many things wrong with that! First of all, do you really want mom and dad to come home to find, not only a mess of a house, but a crime scene in it and police surrounding it so they can’t even go into their house to relax after their travels?

CHLOE: Not exactly…but—

JASMINE: Secondly, do you want to be investigated and harassed because we’re gonna be the prime suspects. WE’RE THE ONES who didn’t notice that someone killed him. WE’RE the ones that didn’t notice there was a dead body in our house for HOURS. WE’RE the ones with fingerprints all over the body. THEY’RE GONNA COME AFTER US FIRST AND WORSE THERE’S NO MURDER WEAPON SO THEY’RE GONNA BE INVESTIGATING THE ENTIRE HOUSE AND HOW DO YOU KNOW SOMEONE DIDN’T FRAME US AND USE SOMETHING FROM OUR ROOMS TO KILL THEM AND LEAVE THE EVIDENCE AND THEY KNEW WE WERE GONNA TOUCH THE BODY SO THERE’S OUR FINGERPRINTS A—

CHLOE: JASMINE TRACY JOHNSON IF YOU DON’T CALM DOWN RIGHT NOW I WILL CALL THE POLICE MYSELF AND LET THEM TAKE ME TO JAIL JUST TO GET AWAY FROM YOU!

Jasmine tries to get her breathing under control and nods at her sister.

CHLOE: Now you get the legs and let’s take him downstairs. We’ll figure something out.

JASMINE: Hey! No. You were supposed to get the legs.

CHLOE: Not anymore, besides, the arms are easier to grab, and I’m weaker than you.

Jasmine mutters under her breath but grabs his legs as the curtains close.

Scene II

The girls are holding the body in the hallway atop the stairs.

CHLOE: Ugh. He’s so heavyyyyy.

Ew! His legs are hairy.

JASMINE: So are yours. And why do you care? I’m the one touching them.

CHLOE: Rude. That’s why I’m not.

What about the stairs?

JASMINE: You go first. 

CHLOE: I don’t want to walk backward.

JASMINE: God, you’re such a baby. I’m touching the hairy legs; you walk backward.

Chloe begins to walk backward, struggling to find each step.

CHLOE: He’s so heavy.

JASMINE: I swear to god. If you drop this man down the stairs.

CHLOE: I’m try-shit!

The body slips out of Chloe’s arms as she stumbles and gravity forces it out of Jasmine’s hands and down the rest of the stairs. Chloe narrowly avoids being taken down with it.

JASMINE: Chloe. Grace. Johnson.

Jasmine fumes at Chloe while they both stare at the body lying awkwardly at the bottom of the steps.

CHLOE: Sorry. Look he’s fine, don’t even worry about it. 

Chloe hops down the rest of the stairs around the body and looks at him from another angle.

See, look at him, he’s just sleeping at the bottom of the stairs. It’s not like we pushed him.

JASMINE: No, but we dropped him! Oh no! Oh no no no no. What if he was only mostly dead and we just killed him the rest of the way? 

CHLOE: You’re insane. He was already dead.

JASMINE: I’m gonna go to jail. I’m gonna be convicted of murder at 20, and I’m never gonna get to have my 21st birthday party and legally drink, and I’m never gonna meet a nice sweet boy and I’m n—

CHLOE: C’mon, stop freaking out.

JASMINE: How are you not?

CHLOE: It wasn’t our fault. We’ll be fine. I need you to help me get him up on the couch. 

JASMINE: They’re gonna think we’re sick, propping him up like a decoration. When they show up they’re gonna get mad ‘cause we moved him and ‘cause we dropped him and—

Chloe slaps the shit out of Jasmine. 

CHLOE: Get it together or I’ll push you down the stairs next. Pick up. His legs. And let’s put him on the couch.

JASMINE: Okay. Okay.

Okay.

They awkwardly waddle him to the couch and roll him onto it.

CHLOE: There see, that wasn’t so bad. Now, I’m gonna wash my hands, and so are you. To the kitchen!

The stage still holds all three characters though they are in different rooms.

JASMINE: What do we do with him?

CHLOE: I don’t know.

JASMINE: Well, until you figure it out, I’ll be making breakfast.

The body starts to slide down the couch until part of him is on the floor.

CHLOE: Are you serious?

JASMINE: Yes. Why? Do you want some?

CHLOE: N—Is that bacon?

And pancakes.

I guess…if we eat first we would have more energy to think and find a solution.

JASMINE: Exactly, smell that bacon. Mmmmmm.

The body’s nose twitches.

CHLOE: Should I like, find my phone?

JASMINE: Nah, let’s deal with that later. 

But you should probably keep working on cleaning.

The body makes audible sniffing noises, and he rubs his nose. Then goes limp again.

CHLOE: I guess. But you’re still cleaning up your puke. 

Do I clean up the blood? Or leave it. We’re already in trouble for messing with a crime scene so do I leave it?

JASMINE: Literally just leave it. We’ll figure that room out later. 

CHLOE: What do we do with him?

JASMINE: I already told you, let’s eat first.

CHLOE: But it’s bothering me. We can’t just ignore him. It’s creepy. What if he comes back to life and tries to eat us?

JASMINE: That’s your problem. I want to make my breakfast and enjoy what little freedom I have left before mom and dad come home and strike us down where we stand.

CHLOE: Seriously? That’s your solution. Help meeeeeee.

JASMINE: I don’t know what to do.

Chloe looks at Jasmine with a pout. Jasmine gives in and leaves the bacon cooking to walk with Chloe over to the body.

Call the cops? Leave him there, go to sleep, and deal with it later when there’s someone else home to make the decision?

CHLOE: Oh yeah, that’ll go over well. “Hi mom, dad, so we had a party, like we weren’t supposed to, made a mess, like you told us not to, etcetera etcetera. Oh! And we KILLED SOMEONE!

JASMINE: Oh my god Chlo. First, stop shouting, also, IT WASN’T OUR FAULT! IT WAS AN ACCIDENT AND YOU’RE THE ONE WHO DROPPED HIM.

CHLOE: I TOLD YOU WE SHOULDN’T MOVE HIM, YOU SHOULD’VE KNOWN BETTER THAN TO TRUST MY WEAK ASS A—

FRANK: Excuse me, who did you kill?

Jasmine and Chloe scream and turn towards the couch.

FRANK: Can you two shut the hell up? God! 

I need painkillers. 

Jasmine and Chloe talk over each other.

JASMINE: You literally didn’t have a pulse like five minutes ago! What are you? Jesus? What even woke you up? We’ve been screaming this whole time. Did you smell the bacon?

CHLOE: How are you alive? Oh my god! It’s a miracle holy crap you’re breathing actually breathing holy shit we thought you were so dead wha-

FRANK: AGAIN WITH THE NOISE!

CHLOE: Sorry.

JASMINE: So you’re not dead?

FRANK: Doesn’t appear so, even though I feel like it. My head is pounding. 

CHLOE: (mutters) My bad

FRANK: Huh?

JASMINE: Nothing. Hungry? We’re making breakfast. Chloe, get him some painkillers and keep cleaning. T-minus 3 hours. 

The food in the other room begins to burn and smoke. 

CHLOE: Wait. What about the blood?

Frank slowly stands up.

FRANK: What blood?

JASMINE: The one all over you?

FRANK: Smells like wine to me, wanna smell?

CHLOE: No.

JASMINE: Well, because of that, you’re helping.

FRANK: Because I’m covered in wine?

JASMINE: Tsk. Because you wasted our wine. You’re in charge of the room we found you in, mainly the wine spot and the puke in the corner.

FRANK: Why is there puke in the corner?

CHLOE: ‘Cause someone over he—

Jasmine cuts her off with a smack on the back of her head.

JASMINE: ‘Cause it’s a party and they get wild. Got it. Got it. Break.

FRANK: Wh—

The smoke alarm goes off as the food catches on fire in the kitchen.

JASMINE: Shit!

The three rush for the kitchen with “oh shit” faces and then freeze mid-stride. The curtain closes.