Fatal Purr (Part 7: Conclusion)

Part 1  Part 2  Part 3  Part 4  Part 5  Part 6

The film loops through several times as TOYS, including PANDORA, file in and watch, each adding her voice to the song with quiet ooh’s. Finally, ENGINEER #1 bursts in from offstage and the music/film stops abruptly. ENGINEER #1 has now acquired a number of scars, some of which appear fresh, and generally looks battle-worn, with torn clothing and a dull glint to his eyes. He also carries what appears to be a bazooka, although it’s labelled as a “Fun Launcher.” ENGINEER #57 and SERAGLIO follow. ENGINEER #57 brandishes a shotgun with a long pole affixed to the top and arching over the barrels. At the end of the pole, a fuzzy pink ball dangles from an elastic string. He also wears a necklace of tiny mechanical paws. SERAGLIO has a ridiculously long, thin sword slung over his back and carries a small green water-pistol. All three men appear to have attained several months of battle experience.The TOYS back away initially, but then move in to attack. SERAGLIO sprays them with his water-pistol, keeping them at bay.

ENGINEER #1: Take this, you bloodthirsty techno-kittens!

ENGINEER #1 attempts to fire his “Fun Launcher,” but it only emits an airy squeak.

ENGINEER #1: Oh, shit. I’m out of ammo.

SERAGLIO: I can not keep them back forever!

ENGINEER #1: Number fifty-seven, can you handle this bunch?

ENGINEER #57: I used my last round during the Engagement At Worker’s Lounge.

SERAGLIO’s pistol chooses this opportunity to piddle out the last of its ammunition. He presses the trigger a few more times, then throws the pistol at the TOYS.

SERAGLIO: Use a Catnip Bomb!

ENGINEER #1 removes a brightly-colored grenade from a pouch at his waist, pulls out the pin, and tosses it at the surrounding TOYS. It explodes in a puff of smoke, and the TOYS slow down and begin to mill around aimlessly. A few of them fall over.

ENGINEER #57: That’s bought us a little time. Is she with them?

SERAGLIO scans the crowd.

SERAGLIO: Yes!

ENGINEER #1: Finally! Hooray!

SERAGLIO: Pandora, I choose you for a duel to the death!

SERAGLIO swings his arm out to point at PANDORA, coincidentally knocking out a TOY with his forearm. The other TOYS back away to spectate, providing a direct line of sight between SERAGLIO and PANDORA.

PANDORA: You’ve come to play with me? Why not play with all of us?

TOYS: Play with us all!

SERAGLIO: No.

TOYS: Please?

SERAGLIO: No.

TOYS: Why?

SERAGLIO: Because, I have cut my way through the metallic underbrush of this diablerie for the sole purpose of bringing about your defeat.

PANDORA: Why?

SERAGLIO: My reason, he is not important. Will you not fight me?

PANDORA: No…

SERAGLIO: No? Do you fear so much the wrath of my great loins?

PANDORA: I am sleepy.

PANDORA leans down on the ground and stretches.

SERAGLIO: Then this shall be the nap from which you never awaken! Prepare yourself for a floral arrangement of pain!

SERAGLIO rushes PANDORA, who yawns. Just then, the catnipped TOYS shake their heads and regain clarity. They close in on the ENGINEERS and SERAGLIO. Just when things look done for, SERAGLIO draws his sword. It glints beautifully. The TOYS lean back, mesmerized. It also catches PANDORA’s attention.

TOYS: Shiny…

PANDORA: I will play with you. But I only want you.

SERAGLIO: Very well.

PANDORA: And all you.

SERAGLIO: As you wish.

SERAGLIO sheaths his sword once again. PANDORA smiles, then rubs seductively against SERAGLIO and purrs.

PANDORA: Pet me.

SERAGLIO: Foolish toy, you can not entice me with your wily ways. I have no interest in such things.

PANDORA: Don’t you like me?

SERAGLIO: I am actively working to bring about your end. Did you think I do this out of amity?

PANDORA: Are you saying that I can’t be your fuzzy friend?

SERAGLIO: You do not even have the fur. What is not steel plating is sharper than a cicada. And, beyond that, I am more of a dog person.

PANDORA: You’re a bad man.

TOYS: Bad!

PANDORA: We just need a little care. But you don’t care. You have no soul.

SERAGLIO: I have soul! What do you mean, I have no soul? My soul is large and friendly, like the capybara!

PANDORA: What is that?

SERAGLIO: It is a shaggy rodent, fond of water and much larger than a wombat.

ENGINEER #1: Seraglio! Now!

SERAGLIO and PANDORA turn to face ENGINEER #1.

SERAGLIO: Now what?

ENGINEER #1: Kill her now, while she’s unawares!

SERAGLIO: Oh…

SERAGLIO aims a high kick at PANDORA’s chin, but she catches his foot and holds it above her head.

SERAGLIO: Tu mama es una bicicleta!

SERAGLIO attempts a few rapid jabs at PANDORA from around his upraised leg, but she stands just beyond his reach. He hops forward in an attempt to get closer, but finds that this makes the strain on his groin unbearable. Instead, he stretches his arm as far as it can go and, leaning forward, is barely able to shove PANDORA gently on the shoulder.

SERAGLIO: Ha-ha! I have regained the upper hand!

PANDORA forces SERAGLIO’s leg even higher, leaving him the choice to either fall backward or split his body down the seams. He falls backward. His skull bounces once or twice on the floor, but aside from that he is completely still.

ENGINEER #1: Is he…dead?

ENGINEER #57: Either that, or he’s decided that now’s a good time to practice sleeping with his eyes open.

ENGINEER #1: But…he can’t die…

ENGINEER #57: He was a brave man, while he lasted.

ENGINEER #1: No, he can’t die! Because I…

ENGINEER #57: I know. We all did.

PANDORA prods SERAGLIO with her foot, with no response. She leans forward and sniffs over his body, ending only centimeters from his face.

PANDORA: Meow.

SERAGLIO’s hands shoot up and close around PANDORA’s head. She swats, hisses, and claws at him, but he continues to grip her skull with all his might. The other TOYS go into an uproar, mewling their curses and lamentations, until PANDORA releases a final, inhuman death-wail, at which everything falls silent. SERAGLIO rises slowly to his feet and dusts himself off.

SERAGLIO: I have done it. I have defeated the Wicked Queen! Her underthings have ceased to function, and you are now free to rejoice!

SERAGLIO looks back and sees the TOYS closing in around him. He points an accusatory finger at one.

SERAGLIO: You! Why are you functioning? I destroyed your Queen!

PANDORA laughs, her voice now badly distorted as if projected from the Other Side.

PANDORA: You thought that I was the Queen?

SERAGLIO: Are you not?

PANDORA: I am only a toy, like everything else. The Queen lies below…but you…

The rising distortion of PANDORA’s voice renders her final words indecipherable.

ENGINEER #57: Below? In Roach-Haven Hall?

SERAGLIO: Will this never end?

SERAGLIO runs to open the trap-door, but the TOYS follow on his tail, still carrying the ENGINEERS. He gets up and runs the other direction, but everywhere he runs, the TOYS follow closely behind, en masse. He tries a large circle, a small circle, a figure eight, and a zig-zag, but nothing can shake them. He creeps toward the trapdoor on his tiptoes, as do they. He stops suddenly and looks back over his shoulder. The TOYS do the same. He looks forward again then does a double-take, which they double as well, resulting in a quadruple-take of sorts. SERAGLIO spins around and walks backward, away from the trapdoor. The TOYS also walk backward, away from him, still dragging the ENGINEERS.

SERAGLIO: You have been supremely shaken by Seraglio! Nya nya!

SERAGLIO rushes toward the trapdoor, but, alas, so do the TOYS.

SERAGLIO: Hell’s nachos! I can not find enough time to open the trap door!

ENGINEER #1: Here!

ENGINEER #1 tosses a grenade to SERAGLIO.

ENGINEER #1: It’s the last one!

SERAGLIO: But…they will tear you apart in their giddiness!

ENGINEER #57: Say adios to the Queen for me!

SERAGLIO pulls the pin and tosses the grenade into the mass of toys. As they grow violently high, he wipes the tears from his eyes and proceeds down the ladder. The stage rises up, and he reaches the bottom to find a many-tentacled animatronic monstrosity waiting for him. It extends off-stage, but the visible portion bears no resemblance whatsoever to human, cat, or Kit-N-Ex.

SERAGLIO: So, you are the monarch mastermind behind all this.

The thing emits a torrent of white noise, blowing SERAGLIO a foot or so backward.

SERAGLIO: This is the time that I should give a long, heroic speech, denouncing you as the elbow of all that is evil. However, I do not believe that this is really about rampaging pussies. I believe that this is a blueprint for something much deeper than life or death, fabrication or conception. There is a line that slices through us and drafts our very anima. And…I will let you figure the rest out for yourself. But know that that is what this is about: slicing.

SERAGLIO draws his sword and holds it two-handed at his side, samurai-style, pointed directly at the center of her nightmarish form. The orchestra kicks into an upbeat battle-theme, adapted from “The Way Of The Seraglio, as the lights fade ever-so-slowly on the two still combatants.

END ACT II

The curtain call proceeds as per custom, except one figure is missing: ENGINEER #24. After the cast has taken their group bow, the lights suddenly cut out and the pale ghost of ENGINEER #24 appears, silhouetted against a flashing strobe and amongst clouds of mist, inside a crumbling portion of the catacomb wall.

ENGINEER #24: Tremble and quake, brief mortals! Clank, Shuffle, this pertains especially to you! For I am the restless spirit of Number Twenty-Four, come from my restless rest to avenge my direly stupid death! You see, it was my dying wish for all of you to know the true version of my song, but since I died basically instantly there wasn’t much time for my wish to be granted. But now, my superenlightened form will sing to you all from beyond the pale! Orchestra, play like you’ve never played before! Lights, lighten like you’ve never lightened before! And you, the audience! The lyrics are printed very tiny and upside-down on the back of your program. Sing, sing along like you’ve never touched your own!

The orchestra plays “L’Odeur” with everything they’ve got as the houselights come on.

ENGINEER #24: Because a nose is a many-splendored thing

Fit to treasure with a golden ring

When you’re breathing in it sucks

And when you’re breathing out it blows

But it’s still great to have a nose

Oh it’s divine, the way that it can smell

No other body part does it so well

When baking cookies, noses’re really swell

Try cutting yours off, that’s how Oedipus fell!

You should touch your nose every day

In a very very special way

Now I’m feeling perky from my nose to my toes

But my perkiest part is my nose

Oh it’s a sin, the way that it can feel

When your nasty sunburn starts to heal

And then your nose’s skin begins to peel

You should slather on sunblock, that’s part of the deal!

There are those who say there’s magic in ‘em

If you can learn to wiggle them about

The immortal sphinx lives with his missin’

But me, I’d rather die than go without

But your nose can be as fragile as an egg

Excessive heat can be a bloody plague

Plug up the holes and elevate

Until the bleeding slows

And then you’ve fixed your nose

Oh it’s absurd, the way that it can please

Without the slightest hint of filth or sleaze

They say an orgasm is like a sneeze

Except you can wear clothes, so your nipples won’t freeze!

Yes I really really really really like them

I really really really really really really really really like them

A rose by any other name

Would still smell like a rose

And the same goes for your nose

Oh it’s true love, the way that I can see

Your noses pointing up at me in glee

And one of you is coming home with me

You’re a beautiful bunch, so I’ll pick you for free!

THE END

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