Act 2, Scene 4: Conspiratory Ramifications


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%MIX% Telepathic FX: OFF


Cal: "Ortha?"

Ortha: "Yes?"

Cal: "What exactly does "Guardian of the Realm" mean?"

Ortha: "It's not nearly as exciting as it sounds. It's my duty to fly along the border and report anything unusual. From bad weather to unexpected guests."

Florence: "Oh, so there is more than one realm?"

Ortha: "Five, in fact. Dumarth, Onedoth, Klam, Serotho and the desert in the south, nobody lives there. I come from Dumarth, that's all the way in the northeast."

Florence: "Does the continent have a name, too?"

Ortha: "We just call it 'home'. And that's also its name."

Cal: "How do your people live? I mean … do you have houses? Streets? Do you know numbers and letters?"

Ortha: "Of course we have houses. Proper ones, of course. Not as tiny as yours! We also have streets, but only for moving heavy goods. Why walk when you have wings? The best houses are at the cliffside of the mountains, and there's no path leading there. You have to fly. But nobody sees that as an inconvenience. We're much more versatile in the air than we are on foot. And yes, we know numbers, not that I'm very good with them, though."

Florence: "And your diet? Do you only eat fresh meat and fish?"

Ortha: "We cook, we have many ways to preserve food. How else are we supposed to eat in winter? I prefer fresh meat, though."

Cal: "So if you're hungry, you have to go hunting?"

Ortha: "If I have the time, and friends to go with … we hunt more for fun than for anything else. It's a lot more convenient to just buy your food at the town market. Also, the quality is so much better!"

Florence: "How do you talk to each other? Do you always have to hold hands?"

Cal: "And what if you want some privacy?"

Ortha: "Our minds are our voices. We don't need to touch; if we want to be heard far away we think loudly, and when we want to keep something to ourselves we think quietly. Unlike you two."

Cal: "This sounds so fascinating! And the images … I wish I could visit your realm one day. It's like nothing I've ever seen before!"

Ortha: "It's a beautiful place. But don't let that deceive you. We have our share of trouble and politics. In that regard, we're not that much different than you two-leggers."

Cal: "Can you lie to each other? Are there criminals?"

Ortha: "Why am I not surprised you are the one to ask that question? We can lie, which makes justice as difficult for us as it is for you. When someone is accused of a crime, they're brought to trial before the elders, and can defend themselves. Only in extreme cases can they be forced to expose their most private thoughts and memories to the court of the elders."

Cal: "I thought you can't read someone's mind against their will?"

Ortha: "Nor can I speak to someone's mind against their will. But the elders can, when joining their minds together. It is a brutal and painful procedure, especially if the subject resists. Some have even lost their mind. Very scary. There's a huge political debate going on whether this procedure is a necessary evil, or if it should be outlawed once and for all."

Florence: "I don't even want to know what they could do to our minds …"

Ortha: "Your thoughts are so frail and brittle. Talking to you is like walking on thin ice. But I like you. I could never harm you. Besides, we are not a violent people. If we cause pain to one another, we can feel it like it was our own. If that doesn't stop you, you have a heart of stone!"

Florence: "Like Welsh."

Ortha: "You can't imagine how much I wish I could make him feel the pain he caused. That would teach him a lesson."

Florence: "I'm afraid we'll have to find another way to make him pay for his crimes."

Ortha: "And you know a lot more about those than I do!"

Florence: "Yeah, we're not going to run out of things to talk about anytime soon …"

Cal: "Someone needs to write a book about this!"

Florence: "I didn't know you could write."

Cal: "Oh shut up, woman."

Florence: "thbbbbbbt!"

Ortha: *laughs*


%HND% Curtain - open

%LIG% LX 2410 - Lights on

%AMB% AMB-0801 - Farmhouse

%SND% PRE-0801 - Kid1, Kid2, Kid3: "Yeaaaaaah!"
%MUS% MUS-0801 - Cue 1

%ACT% The kids bounce up and down on Ortha's back, laughing and cheering!

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid1: "We are the dragon riders of Vanos!"

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid2: "And we are going to avenge our brothers and sisters!"

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid3: "Why do I always have to sit in the back!"

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid2: "Because you're stupid!"

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid3: "No I'm not!"

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid2: "Yes you are!"

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid3: "You don't even know how to ride a dragon!"

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid2: "Oh yes I do!"

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid3: "No you don't!"

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid2: "Just wait, I'll show ya!"

%SND% PRE-0801 (cont.) - Kid3: "Rarrrgh!"

%ACT% Kid2 and Kid3 start a brawl

Mae: "Hey, be gentle! Ortha is not a toy!"

%ACT% Kid2 and Kid3 fall off the "dragon"

%SND% SND-0801 - Thud

%SND% PRE-0802 - Kid2, Kid3 (off): "Waaaaaaaaaahhhhh!"

Mae: "It's enough! Out with you, all three. Out out out. Go play on the beach!"

%SND% PRE-0803 - Kid1: "Can we keep her? She's so fluffy!"

Mae: "No, we can't. She's not a pet, you know?"

%SND% PRE-0804 - Kid1: "Oh man …"

%ACT% Kid2 and 3 re-appear behind Ortha, moving outside while beating each other up.

%ACT% Kid1 dismounts from Ortha's back, runs after Kid2 and 3, and briefly stops to wave.

%SND% PRE-0805 - Kid1: "Goodbye, Mrs. Ortha!"

%MIX% Pan: ON

%ACT% Ortha turns her head, and makes a happy Ortha noise at Kid1.

%ACT% Kid1 runs off

%SND% SND-0802 - Door Closes

Mae: "Ah, it's so nice to have children in the house again … but sometimes silence IS golden."

%MUS% MUS-0802 - Cue 2

Florence: "Ortha says they're adorable, and you should be glad they don't grow wings."

%ACT% Mae laughs

Mae: "Oh my god, yes!"

Florence: "Are they all yours?"

%ACT% Florence and Ortha stand up and walk to the table, behind the 2nd rail. Cal sits down at [4], Florence at [3] and Ortha at [2] at the end of the table

Mae: "No, no, no. They're orphans of the war. Will is teaching them how to read and write, and be good farmhands. My own son moved out ages ago. What about you? Are you still living with your mom?"

Florence: "Yes. And she's probably dying of sorrow, not knowing where I am. Do you have a telephone?"

Mae: "I'm afraid not. Next one is at the post office in St. Eliza, about 15 miles away."

Florence: "Damn. Then we need to find someone to take us there."

Cal: "Do you think the people here will help us?"

Mae: "Why shouldn't they?"

Cal: "Because for them I'm probably the most Anti-Vanosian guy save for Welsh himself?"

%ACT% Mae grabs a tray with cups and a tea pot, starts walking across from [6] to [2], passing out cups for the guests on the table and places the pot at [2] on the table

Mae: "Oh rubbish. It don' matter who you are, it matters what ya' do! They may be patriotic, but they're not stupid. When they see Ortha, they have no reason to doubt you."

%SND% SND-0803 - Door Opens

%MIX% Curry: ON

%MIX% Jyanon: ON

%MIX% Runo: ON

%MIX% Lynard: ON

%ACT% Will comes in from [7], closely followed by Jack, Sly and Illyan

Will: "I'm back, honey!"

Mae: "Hello everybody! Come in and have a seat!"

%ACT% Everybody takes a seat on first level. Will at [6], heading the table, Jack at [3], Sly at [4], Illyan at [5]

%ACT% Mae walks back to her place at [6]

Will: "Awrite! Sorry for dragging you in by your tails so suddenly. Please let me introduce you to our guests: Florence Harrington, the daughter of Peter Harringtonn. Caligula Davis, former assistant of Sarkan T. Welsh. And Ortha, who's neither a beast nor a dragon, no matter what she may look like."

Jack: "Then what in the land's name is she?"

%MUS% MUS-0803 - Cue 3

Florence: "She is a person. Her people have a highly developed culture, but they communicate with their minds only. For some reason she can only speak to me, and those who I touch."

Ortha: "I wonder how much effort it's taking them not to stare at me."

Florence: "Oh shush!"

Jack: "That sounds quite fantastic. How do we know you're not making it all up?"

%SND% Ortha snorts

%ACT% Ortha grabs the pot of tea that is on the table, and pours some into Jacks cup.

%SND% SND-0804 - Pour Some Tea

%ACT% Jack stares

Jack: "Uhmmmm…."

%ACT% Ortha grabs a sugar cube, and drops it into Jack's cup.

%SND% SND-0805 - Sugar Cubes

%SND% SND-0806 - Splut

%ACT% Ortha grabs a spoon, and stirs the tea.

%SND% SND-0807 - Stirring

Jack: "Uh … thank you. I guess."

%MUS% MUS-0804 - Cue 4

Florence: "Anyways, I accidentally discovered Ortha is telepathic. She begged me to help her, and that's how I ended up in Welsh's airship when it took off after the bomb attacks in Port Ospen."

Cal: "I was Ortha's guard at the time. Don't ask me how, but Florence managed to convince me to switch sides, and set Ortha free. We tried to flee from Welsh's airship in one of his fighter planes, but his men shot us down. Only thanks to Ortha's help we managed to survive."

Will: "Their plane crashed right into my backyard!"

Jack: "Well, since you're obviously holding up so well, why don't you go back to Astar where you came from?"

Cal: "Because welsh wants us dead. That's almost as bad as the Queen herself wanting us dead. Astar is no longer a place for us to go home to."

Jack (sarcastic): "Now isn't that ironic?"

Florence: "Certainly not for Ortha. She's stranded thousands of miles away from home in a world she does not understand. Vanos versus Astar means nothing to her."

Jack: "I still don't trust you."

Cal: "Did you know the Queen never wanted war against Vanos? Welsh conned her into it."

Sly, Jack, Will: "What?!"

Cal: "I knew this would get you interested."

Florence: "Father's early planes were designed for entirely peaceful purposes. Welsh however figured they would earn a lot more by selling them as instruments of war, too. When father refused, Welsh sabotaged his plane, and he died. Welsh then forced my mother to sell him father's half of the company. He threatened to kill me if she refused, or the truth ever came to light."

Cal: "Now, what sells weapons better than a war? Welsh spread rumors about a huge secret armament happening in Vanos. Bombs exploded at strategic places in Astarian cities. And soon everybody was in fear over the threat from Vanos. A threat well fabricated enough to convince the Queen she needs a royal air force. And that's how Welsh became the richest man in the world."

Sly: "If that were true, history would have to be rewritten!"

%MIX% Telepathic FX: ON

Florence: "After the war, Welsh needed new threats to keep his business running. Ortha's kin is that new threat. That's why they didn't kill her like the others, but brought her back as a gift to the Queen. They didn't expect her to be sentient. And it occurred to no one that they had just slaughtered an entire … ARGH! ORTHA! PLEASE!"

%MUS% MUS-0805 - Cue 5 (entire)
%SND% SND-0806b - Telepathic Pain

%ACT% Florence cringes in pain, holding her head.

%MUS% MUS-0806 - Cue 6 (I'm so sorry)

Ortha (struck by emotions): "Oh! I'm sorry … I'm so sorry. I … I'm doing my best to keep my feelings to myself, but the horrors of that day … I couldn't hold it back!"

Cal: "It's alright Ortha! We're here for you … let's think about something else … "

%ACT% Cal caresses Ortha reassuringly

%ACT% Ortha closes her eyes, lowering her head.

Sly: "What just happened?"

Florence (trying to regain her composure): "Ortha was just overwhelmed by the memories of her brother dying before her in a hailstorm of bullets, and she inadvertently shared it with me. For a moment it was like I had been there myself."

Sly: "The world needs to know about this!"

Will: "And then? Do you think they're gonna say 'oops, sorry' and give us our country back?"

Sly: "No, but the blood of our friends and families is on Welsh's hands. If there's a way to make him burn in hell for his sins, I'll be first in line."

Jack: "Us against the most powerful man in the world? That's hopeless."

Illyan: "Powers can be taken away just as easily as they were granted."

Jack: "Yeah, but who could do that, except maybe the Queen herself?"

Illyan: "Exactly!"

Jack: "Are you crazy?"

Illyan: "No. Did you see how Ortha's memories affected Florence when she remembered the massacre? If we can give Queen Irdis the same profound first hand experience of Ortha's horrible memories, she is not going to question what she will see."

Ortha: "Intruding someone's mind against their will is a big taboo among my people! It can even make them go mad!"

Florence: "But he's right, isn't he?"

Ortha: "Probably."

Illyan: "Tonight will be the first new moon of summer. Like every year, the Queen is going to visit the shrine of the forefathers at the south end of the palace garden, lay down a single white rose and pray for the goodwill of their spirits. It's going to be dark, and she is going to be alone. Nobody is going to expect anybody coming from the air."

Ortha: "So he wants me to swoop down on her and carry her away? It's not that easy! I don't want to hurt her! If the slightest thing goes wrong we're dead, and even if I manage to bring her here and share my memories … we have no idea how she's going to react!"

Cal: "It's crazy to bet everything on one card like that!"

Florence: "Does anybody have a better idea?"

Illyan: "Look. If we don't act now, you will soon be dead, and Ortha ends up as an exhibit in the Queen's zoological garden. Welsh is out to get you as we speak."

Florence: "Ortha?"

%MUS% MUS-0807 - Cue 7

Ortha: "Technically, I could do it. It's against my innermost beliefs though. It just doesn't feel right. But I also feel how desperate you are. And I don't have a better plan either. Do you think it will work?"

Florence: "It could."

Ortha: "Then I'll do it. I trust you."

Illyan: "I can drive you to Port Ospen. My truck fits two horses … or one Ortha."

Ortha: "Oh, can someone bring the children back in? At least they thought I was a dragon …"

Cal: "I'll be coming with you."

Florence: "And me too."

Illyan: "Of course. Meet me tonight at nine, behind my house."

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