Act I

Everything begins the same as the night before. The audience files in and takes its seats as a whole. The curtain raises and the players are all in their places. They have all their line memorized and locked away in vaults of flesh and bone. His accent is perfect, her laugh has a slight snort every three breaths. All their actions, connections, beings are scripted to the letter. They are ready.
The play begins. Lines fill your ears one after another, lilting and flowing from one into the next as easily as water. The main event is a tragedy wrapped in the warm folds of comedy and dashed against the shores of romance to add realism. Each part was painstakingly written and rewritten to make sure that it is perfect.
The scene changes once, and then it’s suddenly the end of the act, and the curtain closes. Fifteen minutes without play grinds on the payers’ nerves until the curtain rises again. The play continues like every other night. Except…
One of the players trips. A vase is thrown to the floor and gives the dull sound of plastic bouncing. The audience will forgive these things, just show them what will happen next. But the players just stare at the vase. Slowly, one picks it up and drops it again. The sound reverberates through the hushed audience in an audible whisper of echo. Then another player takes hold of the wonderful, crystal glasses and listens as they sound of plastic on the floor. Then, suddenly, everything is gone to chaos.
The players begin ripping apart the stage. One discovers the wax fruit on the table, another finds the books that stand blank on the shelf. One by one, the players sit and cry. They all wear matching carnival masks of surprise, and cry the tears of those betrayed.
The audience that came with rotten fruit in one hand and a tissue in the other leaves the latter on the stage and then just leaves. The curtain closes.


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