A Cat Has Only Nine Lives

  • Cast Number: 7
  • Run-time: 80 minutes
  • Bible Reference: John 8:44

A two act drama suitable for dinner theatre.
Liberty Bible Church in Indiana staged this excellent Karl Wagner script
Family quarrels are the fiercest. Did you ever read the Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis? This is a look at how many of the "techniques" described by Screwtape could be at work within a family's lives. Two adult sisters' constant turmoil and fighting rules any family gatherings. After the funeral of their mother, it all comes to a head, as their other two sisters, two daughters, and one daughter's friend find themselves in the fray, complete with accusations of sexual infidelity. But even with a voice of reason, and getting things are "out in the open" can peace and resolution come?
Quote:
“One of the most striking differences between a cat and a lie is that a cat has only nine lives.” Pudd'nhead Wilson, written by Mark Twain

Cast of 7 females CHARACTERS:
PATRICIA (PATTY, TRISH) 40’s. Oldest sister,“thinks she’s Mom”
HAYLEY 40’s. Second sister Tries to avoid conflict, sometimes
MICHELLE (CHELLE) Late 30’s. Third sister. Black sheep, “free spirit”
EMILY Late 20’s. Youngest sister
CRYSTAL Early 20’s. Hayley’s daughter
JESSICA (JESS) Early 20’s. Crystal’s roommate
ALICIA High School. Patricia’s daughter, is attracted to freedom of Michelle

SETTING
The home of Patricia, somewhere in the midwest. Not a showplace, but comfortably inviting. There is a cozy kitchen, and a relaxing deck. The funeral of their mother is over, family and friends have left and only the children (PATRICIA, HAYLEY, MICHELLE, EMILY) remain, along withCRYSTAL, her roommate JESSICA, and ALICIA. TIME
Evening of the first day continuing into the morning of the second day.

SCENES
ACT I SCENE 1 Living Room
SCENE 2 Kitchen
SCENE 3 Back Deck
SCENE 4 Kitchen
SCENE 5 Living Room
ACT II SCENE 1 Living Room
SCENE 2 Living Room to the Kitchen
SCENE 3 Kitchen

Sample of Script:

ACT I SCENE 1

(The setting is PATRICIA’s home. SR, a living room, USR is the front door. Stairs lead up to the bedrooms. DC is the kitchen, medium size,cozy, separated by a small wing wall. SL is a door leading to a back deck. At RISE, HAYLEY, and EMILY ENTER from the kitchen, andsit down on the couch, exhausted.)

HAYLEY (kicks off her shoes) Finally…

EMILY Mine, too. (let’s her shoes fall to the floor) I never knew a funeral involved so much walking and standing.

HAYLEY The price we pay to look good…

EMILY For other women. The men don’t even care.

PATRICIA (ENTERS speaking) Have either of you seen Alicia?

EMILY She went to the store with ‘Chelle to get some things forbreakfast. They should be back any minute.

PATRICIA With Michelle? One of you should’ve told me.

HAYLEY Patty, she just went to the store, not on spring break. Besides, Crystal and Jessica went along too.

PATRICIA I just wish she’d ask me first.

(MICHELLE, ALICIA, JESSICA, CRYSTAL ENTER, carrying grocery bags)

MICHELLE You should’ve seen how those four women tricked that poor guy into giving away immunity. They lied to him, right tohis face, and he fell for it. That’s classy work.

PATRICIA Doesn’t sound classy to me.

MICHELLE Uh, oh. Looks like Aunt Michelle’s tribe has spoken.

ALICIA Jess, Crystal, let’s go put these groceries away.

(ALICIA, JESSICA, and CRYSTAL move into the kitchen)

PATRICIA Michelle, I’m trying to teach Alicia right from wrong. It’s hard enough without you trying to lead her astray.

MICHELLE (drops her purse and moves to a chair) Astray? We just went to the store. There was nowhere near enough time to go astray. But, maybe… if I took her shopping tomorrow…

PATRICIA You may find deceit funny, Michelle, but I do not. Your carefree, do anything I want to attitude, is the kind of trait I don’t want my daughter to get.

MICHELLE How dare you lecture me on deceit. Anyway, I was justtelling them what happened on Survivor last week. I wasn’t giving them life lessons in evil.

HAYLEY We’re all tired, and emotionally stretched to the limit. For heaven’s sake, we just buried our mother.

PATRICIA You’re right. You’re right. I… I’m sorry, Michelle. I think I’ll go up and get some sleep. I’ll see you all in the morning.

HAYLEY and EMILY (together) Good night. (urging MICHELLE)

MICHELLE ‘night Trish.

EMILY That was a close one.

MICHELLE Yeah, but you know what’s comin’. If I stay here verylong, it’s gonna hit like a tornado.

CRYSTAL (calls from kitchen) Anybody want anything to drink. We have Diet Coke, hot chocolate, tea…

MICHELLE How about coffee? Can you make coffee?

CRYSTAL I can’t, but Jessica probably can. She’s a barista.

MICHELLE A what?

JESSICA An officially trained professional coffee maker… I work atStarbucks.

MICHELLE (To HAYLEY) Oooh, a professional… I gotta see this in person.

 

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