Setting for the play
The three young children, CORA, PAULA and WADE, are around twelve to thirteen years of age. They live in the countryside in idyllic surroundings. They are innocent and intense about life. They speak slowly with great emphasis on the words they are saying—as if the words are being spoken for the first time.
If young adult actors are playing the roles, they should be dressed as adults, not children. And they should speak as young adults but with the innocence of children.
The lighting should be natural and the stage may be bare or it may be decorated as described in the scenes.
Stage Left: A wooden hut with a window viewed from the inside.
Centre Stage: Rolling countryside backdrop.
Stage Right: A gate with some bushes on each side.
The Play : Scene 1: Centre Stage
Wade and Paula in the open countryside
PAULA It is a warm day.
WADE (Holding out his right hand) This is the sunshine.
PAULA It is very cool now.
WADE (Looking up) That cloud has come quickly.
PAULA Will it rain soon?
WADE Over there many sheep are lying down. That is a sign of rain. We must take shelter.
PAULA I will find a place.
WADE (Following her stage left towards a hut) I will follow you. I will not fail to find my way. You go first.
Scene 2: Stage Left
Wade and Paula in the old wooden hut
PAULA This little hut is dry.
WADE Look, the window, it is open.
PAULA The rain will not come in.
WADE (Closing the window) I will close it.
PAULA Why are you closing it?
WADE It is raining.
PAULA The rain is not very heavy and it cannot come in.
WADE I will leave it open then.
WADE (After a pause) You have a green jumper and lovely white shoes.
PAULA The shoes are old. I have a red dress on.
WADE Yes. … Do you like music?
PAULA I can dance at school.
WADE But do you like dancing?
PAULA No. All the girls must dance together. There are no boys.
WADE I cannot dance yet, but I will learn.
PAULA Who will you dance with, then?
WADE I don’t know, but I would like to dance with a girl.
PAULA Do you know any other girls?
WADE I know you and CORA.
PAULA CORA, ha! She can’t dance.
WADE She told me she would learn.
PAULA Do you like her?
PAULA I saw you with her on Sunday.
WADE I was not! Oh, yes … but she was looking for her younger sister.
PAULA Were you helping her?
WADE The sun is shining again, look at the colour on the window.
PAULA Do you like her better than me?
WADE No. I mean … I like you both the same.
PAULA Who is the most beautiful?
WADE Well … you have lovely hair … it is long.
PAULA CORA has short hair.
WADE Yes! But it is yellow and golden.
PAULA I will tell her that you like me better than her.
WADE Please don’t. I only like her hair anyway.
PAULA All right. But you must promise me never to speak to her again. I am going …
WADE Okay. I will never speak to her again, if you do not tell her.
PAULA (Leaving) I must go now.
WADE Yes, but it is not eight o’clock yet … is it?
PAULA (To herself after leaving the hut) I am sure you will speak to her again, so I will tell her.
Scene 3: Stage Right
Wade and Cora at gate near some bushes
CORA (To herself) It is a lovely day. I feel so wonderful. And, is my hair not beautiful?
CORA (Looking around) Is someone coming? Hello.
WADE Shush! I must not speak to you any more.
CORA Why? I did not tell anyone, I promise.
WADE I believe you. Please understand.
CORA You are afraid.
WADE No! But if I talk to you, something might happen.
CORA You would never hurt me. I don’t think you are unkind.
WADE CORA, I would not, but someone else might.
WADE I cannot tell you.
CORA You do not love me anymore.
WADE I do. I do. I do.
CORA If you did something bad, I will not be cross, if you tell me.
WADE I did not. Honestly, I wish I could tell you.
CORA You were playing with CORA again.
WADE I did not want to, but it was raining.
CORA You think she is much nicer than me.
WADE No. Your hair is much more beautiful.
CORA But you said that she looks nicer.
WADE Not I! … I only said that her hair was longer so that she would not tell you. But she did!
CORA … So that she would not tell me what?
WADE … That I was in the hut with her. But it was raining and I promised not to speak to you again, if she did not tell.
CORA But that is not what she told me.
WADE What did she say?
CORA She said that you don’t love me, and … I didn’t believe this part—but you asked her for …
WADE … Yes?
CORA A kiss.
WADE No! CORA, did you think I would?
CORA I laughed, and said she was lying, but she went away laughing too. Then I cried.
WADE, After a pause Do you think I still love you?
CORA I think so.
WADE Then, will you listen to me for a minute and I will tell you everything.
WADE Well, this is how it happened …
Scene 4: Stage Left
CORA Do you like her better than me?
WADE No! I mean … I like you both the same.
CORA Who is the most beautiful?
WADE Well … you have lovely hair … it is long.
CORA She has short hair.
WADE But it is yellow and golden, even though yours is longer.
CORA I will tell her that you prefer me to her.
WADE Don’t, it is only your hair that I like anyway.
CORA If you never speak to her again, I will not tell her.
WADE I will never … I promise.
End of Wade’s recollection
WADE That is the exact truth.
PAULA Oh Darling, I believe you, I do. Now, I will tell you … word for word.
Scene 5: Centre Stage
PAULA Hello, CORA.
CORA Oh PAULA, you have a lovely dress.
PAULA Yes. Your boyfriend was admiring it.
CORA Oh look, the sun is warm now.
PAULA And he said that he liked me better than you.
CORA He didn’t.
PAULA Who do you think you are anyway—Cleopatra? I was in the old hut with him during the shower … and do you know what he said?
CORA I don’t believe you.
PAULA He asked me for a kiss.
CORA Oh! You’re lying.
PAULA Oh, am I? Just you ask him was he in the hut with me … alone.
CORA, Laughing You’re lying.
PAULA, Leaving Ha, ha! No I’m not – but he is.
CORA (To herself and facing the audience) He didn’t. I know he didn’t.
End of Cora’s recollection
Scene 6: Centre Stage
WADE Dear CORA, please don’t cry. Anyway, CORA is nothing to me compared to you.
CORA I know! Let us go up to that old hut together.
WADE Yes—a wonderful idea!
CORA And will you ask me for a kiss?
WADE Oh, CORA!