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Lunch Time Read

Odd Circumstances: The Play

Scene One:

She exited the taxi. Looking at the large apartment complex, she had to shield her eyes from the rain.

The lousy umbrella she just got at the airport was overpriced and useless. Judy grunted as she paid the extra tip to get the annoying older man to leave.

It was dark and raining. Her phone chirped to alert her that he was home.

“I’m fine. Goodnight,” Judy shouted to be heard over the heavy rainfall.

She raced up the stairway with her purse that now had only one strap. Her roller bag was hitting the steps as she ascended the stairs.

Before she knocked, the door flew open. It banged inward as the looming figure screeched back. Judy saw the wind bang the door against the wall for the third time in less than a minute.

She smiled, dropped the umbrella to get a better look and her view was now able to see the figure had a set of blue eyes and caramel skin.

His pearly whites nearly floored her, “Hurry in child,” he said.

Instantly, Judy knew he was gay. She tied her umbrella and stepped in.

“Sorry, I’m all wet,” Judy giggled as she closed the door behind her.

He raised an eyebrow, “Girl, keep that talk for penthouse. You are talking to the wrong persuasion.”

He frowned at her. Judy’s mouth fell open. He started laughing and slapped her wrist playfully.

“I’m only kidding,” he says.

Judy, “About being gay?”

“Not that part. I love dirty talk. Keep it coming,” he smiles.

Judy nods, “Noted.”

“I’m Harvey by the way. Harvey Downing, actor. Extraordinarily talented,” he grins.

Judy, “Really? Me too. Or, I hope to be. I have an audition soon. It’s the whole reason I am here. I had to sign an NDA and all that.”

“Who are you? I am fascinated. Come sit and spill the tea, but first let me get you a towel or something,” Harvey sprinted off.

A moment later, he returned with a blanket and threw it over her shoulders. Judy wasn’t cold, but she accepted it none-the-less.

“Come on,” he motioned as she followed him down the long hallway.

Judy, “Wow. This is all yours?”

“No. I’m a renter too. The owner is away on business or something,” Harvey waved the answer away.

She nodded. They entered the parlor. The room was lavishly furnished and it was spectacular.

“Sit,” Harvey urged.

This room was more lit. She could see his hair was in small braids. His skin was free of blemishes. The man had a swimmer’s build.

“Ain’t I fabulous?” Harvey raised an eyebrow.

Judy nods, “Exquisite.”

“Oh, you’re a keeper. So, tell me about this NDA?,” He sits and crosses his legs.

Judy sits opposite him and folds her hands on her lap.

“Go on, I’m all ears,” Harvey grins.

Judy nods, “My name is Judy Serena Pike. I was a grad student at Illinois graduate writing program. We had a special guest speaker.” “I bet it was a hottie,” Harvey interrupts with a grin.

Judy winks.

Harvey claps, “I am liking you more with each passing second.” “Well, he told me to forget about being a writer. I could be the lead in his next big picture. He gave me his card and I assumed he just wanted to get in my pants,” Judy sighs.

Harvey, “Smart woman.”

Judy nods and pauses to look around the room. The walls had original work. She had loved art and knew one was a Picasso.

“Nice?” Harvey eyes her.

Judy clears her throat, “It’s great.” “Right!??! Don’t be getting no ideas, now. I’ll beat yo’ ass. Don’t let this handsome face fool you. I’m scrappy. I also do pilates and will destroy you,” Harvey proclaims.

Judy raises her hands in alarm.

“Good. Glad we understand each other. Tell me more,” Harvey grins.

Judy swallows.

“I don’t bite. Well, I do, just not women. I just need to make things clear from the start, is all,” Harvey states.

Judy, “Alright. I get it. Small town girl with big ideas.” “You have to be a writer,” Harvey answers.

Judy smiles and looks off. Harvey snaps his fingers at her.

“Girl, are you meditated? If so, with what? How many dosages? And can I get some?” Harvey jokes.

Judy giggles and shakes her head.

“Then what is it?” Harvey asks.

Judy, “What you said. It just reminded me of my dream.” “Which was? Sorry, I’m a nosey be-tch,” Harvey grins and folds his hands.

Judy, “Oh, well. Just my thoughts on dreams. Dreams are a doorway into ourselves.”

“Ourselves?” Harvey leans in.

Judy nods.

Harvey waves his hand, “Well, go on! I am fascinated to hear this.” “Oh, sorry. It is so refreshing. Dreams are like mirrors into the multiverse. We see ourselves as we are. Perhaps as we wished we were. And, other versions of ourselves. I can see myself so clearly when I dream. It brought me here. This house.”

“This house?” Harvey points to the air.

Judy, “Yeap. It was why I took a chance and called the director. He paid for my flight, sent me the script, and I got an audition.” “That is unbelievable. Are you a con-artist?” Harvey stands, peers down at her with a pointing finger.

Judy gasps.

Harvey, “Don’t give me that. Why this apartment complex?”

“Oh, that’s easy. Another Judy told me it is lucky. If I stay here, all my dreams will come true,” Judy responds.

Harvey shakes his head.

“So, you don’t believe me. You think I am crazy?” Judy asks.

Harvey, “Unsure miss Judy Pike. Time will tell. Let me show you your room.” He walks out, Judy jumps up and follows him upstairs.

Scene Two:

Judy walks into the huge kitchen. She couldn’t resist the smells and singing of Harvey. He steps singing when she enters.

“Who is that? I can’t place the artist,” Judy declares.

Harvey, “Me. I am all original. So how has things been going? I haven’t seen you in three weeks.”

“I have a lot to tell you since I don’t know anyone else,” Judy professes.

Harvey stops mixing the stew in the pot to face her, “Speak. Don’t be long or my grandma’s slap your sibling stew will stick.” “What’s this slap yo’ sibling- stew?” Judy raises an eyebrow.

Harvey grins, places his hands on his hips, “A Southern dish. It is sure to solve all your problems.” He sighs, turns back to the stew to stir. She lightly touches his shoulder. He looks at her and smiles.

“Tell me what happened?” Judy smiles encouragingly.

Harvey, “I didn’t get the call back for a part I was sure I had nailed. It was devastating, but I’ll survive. How about you child?”

“Well, I got the part. I’ve been running lines from 2am to 6am. I got to be at hair and make-up at 6:10 sharp. Then, we shoot scenes until three or four in the afternoon. That’s a wrap on the day,” Judy tries to hide her smiles.

Harvey claps.

“You aren’t mad at me?” Judy asks.

Harvey, “Child, you made it. If anything, I am envious. You must be something special.”

He turns to her and shshasys his hips.

“Watch it, or else you will break a hip,” Judy warns.

Harvey giggles, “Girl, these hips don’t quit. It’s how I locked down not one, or two, but THREE men at once. Two brothers at that. That is gold here.” “Wow,” Judy’s mouth falls open.

Harvey shakes his head.

Judy, “It isn’t me anyhow. Judy told me what to do. Eah night she gives me pointers.”

“Not that dream drab again,” Harvey waves her off.

Judy, “Just my little secret. She told me to tell you about a part. It was made for you. I knew I had to come looking for you. Some guy named Ryan Murphy’s new film.”

Harvey drops the spoon in his hand. He turns to her. Her mouth starts making a gapping, “OH.”

“Say that again,” Harvey pauses to listen closely.

Judy, “Judy told me.” He raises a hand to cut her off.

“Ryan Murphy. Mr Nip/Tuck. American Horror Story. Eat, Pray, Love?” Harvey clarifies.

Judy, “Yeah, I think so. Oh, I love that movie by the way. We should have a movie night by the way.” She grins.

“You are playing with me? Aren’t you?” Harvey raises an eyebrow.

Judy slides him a folder paper. He opens it cautiously as she picks up the discarded spoon. Judy disposes of it in the sink.

“This is at Warner Brothers,” Harvey states and looks at her.

Judy, “I know. It is where we are shooting. Oops, I almost broke my NDA. Anyhow, there is a location here in Manhattan. Go, or don’t. It is up to you. Exclusive talent only. Judy says you will blow them away, no pun intended.”

With that, she skips out of the kitchen. Harvey stares after her confused.

Scene Three:

Harvey burst into Judy’s room. He shakes her awake.

“What time is it?” Judy yawns.

Harvey climbs on her bed, “You lucky bitch. I got the part. They said, they would be fools not to cast me. I got the part!!”

He jumps up and down on her bed.

Judy smiles, “I told you. This apartment complex is magical. Judy told me so. So now, do you believe me? You got the lead.”

“Girl, ain’t you been listening. I went today and got signed on the spot. Lead role and I get to be myself basically. Yes, I believe you, maybe,” Harvey smiles.

Judy, “That’s fantastic.” Harvey frowns.

Judy, “It is.”

“Why the sour puss?” Harvey stops smiling, hops off the bed.

Judy, “The last three nights, I’ve had a difficult time hearing Judy. Something is wrong. It is like interference for an antenna. She is trying to tell me something. I just can’t hear it.” “Like what?” Harvey raises an eyebrow.

Judy shrugs.

“Has this happened before?” Harvey asks, worried.

“Judy shakes her head, “Nope. Never. That is why I am worried.”

He pulls her into a hug. Harvey caresses her back.

“It’ll be alright. I promise you. Let's reheat some stew. A full stomach will do wonders,” Harvey professes.

Judy nods.

“Come on,” Harvey pulls her towards the door.

Judy, “I have an awful feeling.” “Well, that’s the hunger talking. I got the part, so it can’t be all bad,” Harvey smiles.

Scene Four:

Harvey comes home. He hears a strange sound coming from upstairs.

“What in God’s name?” He asks no-one.

He takes the stairs two at a time. At the top of the floor, he hears the sound more clearly.

“No!” he gasps and runs down the hall.

He pulls open Judy’s bathroom door. She is drilling a hole in the wall.

“Stop it you crazy bitch!” he shouts.

Judy turns to him, drill pointing in his direction.

“Cut it off!” he yells again.

Judy, “Oops.” She switches off the drill and puts it down.

“Have you lost your GODdamn mind?” Harvey spits out.

Judy shakes her head, “No. There is someone in this wall. They told me this morning.”

Harvey throws his hands up in the air, “Okay. I’m jumping off the cuckoo train.” “I am not crazy. I can prove it,” Judy snaps.

Harvey raises an eyebrow, “How?”

Judy points to the hole.

“Absolutely not,” Harvey declares.

Judy, “Why not? I am already half-way through. Give me another twenty minutes tops.” Harvey sighs.

Judy, “I know you are curious. Let me show you I’m not crazy. Please.” “Says the woman covered in dirt, was holding a drill like a man woman,” Harvey responds.

Judy folds her hands together in prayer.

“Whatever. This is going to cost me my job as House Manager,” Harvey walks downstairs.

Judy, “Where are you going? Please don’t call the police.” “I need a drink,” Harvey shouts.

Judy nods.

Scene Five:

A few minutes later.

Harvey sips his drink, “Time.” “No way, has it been twenty minutes,” Judy replies.

Harvey rolls his eyes, “Seven. Okay. Hurry up. I have a date and now I gotta deal with this mess.”

Judy smiles.

“What?” Harvey tries to peep in the human size hole she had made.

Judy, “A body.” “You lie!” Harvey squirms to see inside.

Judy shakes her head, stands triumphantly, and dusts off the gloves she had on with a wide smile.

“See. I knew you were gonna bring drama,” Harvey states.

Judy, “The body called to me.” “That’s some crazy white people shit!” Harvey snaps.

“Come look,” Judy steps out of the way to give him a clearer view.

Harvey puts his drink on the bathroom counter. He steps closer to look.

“Hurry up. You got a date remember,” Judy mocks.

Harvey looks inside and screams, “A body!”

“Told you,” Judy rolls her eyes.

“Girl, who can think of a date if there is a dead body in here,” Harvey confesses and throws his hands in the air.

Judy shrugs.

“Call the cops,” Harvey yells

Judy, “Calm down. I’ll do it. Finish your drink.”

The end.

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