Deep, Slow, Sweet, and Real: A Brief Soap Opera
Brooke, a ravishing she-devil
Chad Baxter, a sociable good-boy, lifelong winner of popularity contests
Kate Baxter, wife of the sociable good-boy
Brooke searching facebook for prey.
Brooke: Where are you Chad Baxter? Fool. October is the month of mischief, and high school is suddenly important again. Aren’t we all feeling a little retro enjoyment for days gone by? For missed opportunities? Our better yet delayed opportunities? How awkward we all were! All except for you Chad. So handsome. Enviously put together for someone just out of childhood. You were mesmerizing. And such a good boy! Principled. It’s all in good fun, no more than boyish mischief to throw eggs and tomatoes at passing cars from the shadow of the graveyard, but fucking is out of the question. There will be no fucking in a graveyard. Too strange for you, you squirmy little weed. Too worried about the poor woman six feet under than the one very much alive and unzipping your fly. “Look at this one, she died when she was only 21, not very much older than us.” So forlorn! So full of shit. We both know I just didn’t have the right stuff for you at the time. Will you accept me now?
And there you are. Unchanged, predictably handsome, predictably pictured with the attractive—well, once attractive wife and well-groomed children. Be my friend?
Hah! Accepted instantly. Chad Baxter, always there for you with fluffy acceptance. (Pause) Fish on! Fish on! Oh my god, Brooke, what’s it been like 20 years? You look stunning! Very much looking forward to catching up.” You want to catch up Chad? Okay then, no need to delay.
A sprinkling of fairy dust; Brooke disappears.
Chad in his bedroom, monitoring his network.
Chad: People we have hit 1,000! I am 35 years-old and have collected 1,000 friends. Reputable friends. Although I wonder whether I should have accepted Brooke or not. There was always something I couldn’t quite understand about her. Who cares? There is a huge difference between 999 and 1,000. Astonishing. And for that kudos to Brooke. “Ladies and gentleman, it is with great humility that I accept your nomination for Senator of this great state!” Someday.
A sprinkling of fairy dust; Brooke appears.
Wow, Brooke, you’re here…you’re here in my bedroom. How on earth is this possible?
Brooke: The miracles of technology. You accept my offer of friendship.
Chad: You’re right, I did. I also accepted offers from 999 others, but none of them materialized in my bedroom.
Brooke: I’m special. (Pause). I’m not?
Chad: Brooke, I…
Brooke: I’m not special?
Chad: I didn’t say that.
Brooke: Well, I’m not as special as you, of course with your 999 friends.
Chad: 1,000, you make 1,000
Brooke: I do? 1,000 is a special number isn’t it? How long have you been waiting for it?
Chad: A little while.
Brooke: Just a little while? You sure?
Chad: A few months.
Brooke: The well of friends running a little dry before I showed up?
Chad: Can we do this somewhere else?
Brooke: Do what?
Chad: Catch up.
Chad: Because we are in my bedroom.
Brooke: Your bedroom?
Chad: C’mon Brooke, mine and Kate’s, my wife.
Brooke: Tell me about Kate.
Brooke: Because we are catching up. Talking about spouses is what people talk about when they catch up. I thought you were looking forward to this? Your note said so.
Chad: I am, really, but I thought we would catch up virtually first.
Brooke: Take things slow.
Chad: What? No. I mean do the standard online fragmented catch up. I look at some of your pictures, read some of your posts, you do the same for me, we comment, and develop a fairly accurate picture of each other’s life.
Brooke: Which we can’t do here?
Chad: C’mon Brooke, be sensible. This is my bedroom.
Brooke: Where you would be piecing together the collage of my life. What is the difference? You’d still be in the bedroom with a woman other than your wife.
Chad: Simple. This is physical, the other virtual.
Brooke: I’d expect your puritan sensibilities to struggle with this a bit Chad.
Chad: Absolutely not. I keep nothing from Kate.
Brooke: She knows all about your 1,000 friends, does she?
Chad: Well not you of course, not yet, but yes she does. She even updates my site sometimes.
Brooke: A dutiful wife, this Kate. Tell me more.
Chad: Look, we have to leave my bedroom.
Brooke stretches out on the bed.
Brooke: Let me ask you something. Would you rather tell a woman she looks stunning through facebook, or when she is lying on your bed?
Chad: That was just something I said.
Brooke: No, telling someone they look good, great maybe, is something you just say. Stunning is something else Chad. When is the last time you told wife Kate that she looked stunning?
Chad: Kate is the love of my life.
Brooke: Chad. I hope you are not one of those sad men who titillates himself with online flirtation. You always struck me as someone who chooses his words carefully, who means what he says.
Chad: I do.
Brooke: I’m thinking that’s a lie. I’m thinking you might be a coward.
Chad: I am not—
Brooke: You know that’s empty. (Pause) I’m waiting.
Chad: You look stunning.
A great slackening in Chad.
Chad: You really do. I don’t know what it is, but, but…you know what forget stunning, stunning isn’t right. You look hot, sexy-hot. I’m transfixed by your hair, your body…your breasts are…are bewitching.
Brooke: I have bewitching breasts? Thank you Chad.
Chad: Not only your breasts, Brooke, everything about you. And you’re here. In my bedroom. Which under normal circumstances, would be wrong, so wrong, but not now, not when you magically appeared! Brooke you were heaven-sent to me, and I’m not afraid.
He lies down beside her and they kiss passionately.
Kate: Where am I? What fucking world did I just enter?
Chad: (continuing to kiss Brooke) I’m sorry Kate.
Kate: This is a joke right? Chad, you are not betraying me in my home, on my bed? There must be some explanation. The children. The children were kidnapped and this is the only way you can get them back.
Chad: (continuing to kiss Brooke) I’m sorry Kate.
Kate: Oh, okay. No explanation necessary then.
Brooke: (stopping Chad) Buddy, you have to explain to your wife what’s going on. I mean it’s kinda distracting.
Chad: What can I say? What can I possibly say? She was heaven-sent Kate. I was here alone, I turned around, and there she was—a beautiful woman from my past. I struggled, but this is bigger than me. She’s a divine gift, and I had no choice but to accept her.
Kate: A divine gift? You used to say I was a divine gift. How many divine gifts does one man receive?
Chad: It doesn’t matter. The point is not to question them.
Brooke: Not to be the bearer of bad news, but this divine gift is on the clock, so unless you want to pay for another hour, I have to go.
Kate: (laughs) I was at the grocery store. You called a prostitute while I was at the grocery store?
Chad: She is lying! She is lying!
Kate: Of course she is. She’s a lying whore, a divinely ordained lying whore.
Chad: Brooke, tell her please.
Brooke: I’m going to slip out okay? Nice meeting you both. You have a really nice home.