Stories

About

Here are some samples of my writing. If you are interested in using any of the full works in a production, please contact me.

A Cup of Christmas Cocoa (short story)

Flop, clomp, flop, clomp, flop, clomp. The sole of Samson’s shoe flapped against the cement of the littered sidewalk. He kept his head bowed against the whistling icy wind and plodded along in silence. Flop, clomp, flop, clomp, flop, clomp, clomp.

It was Christmas time again. As usual the shops were decorated with greenery and ribbon, but the luster was missing this year. Samson knew it. Everyone knew it. He thought of Christmases when he was young. His family would tell stories by the fire, sipping hot cocoa until he and his brothers and sisters fell asleep. The next day they would awaken to a present or two. Samson did not know they were poor at the time; he only knew that some families were richer. Now Samson knew that he was poor. Now everyone was poor.

Samson paused for a moment and raised his head. Across the street, a long line of people stretched all the way down to the corner and wrapped around a building. The end of the line was not even visible. Anxious, hungry, wrinkled young faces stared and waited and waited. They were staring at one small green door which blocked out all but a thin streak of warm light escaping onto the snowy stoop.

Samson quickly began to walk toward the end of the line, when the door opened and a woman with a floral apron poked her head out. She said something to the man at the front of the line. He yelled back at her, but the woman only shook her head and closed the door. Kicking the doorstep and yelling more loudly, the man stormed away and Samson’s heart sank.

No bread tonight.

(story continues…)

© 2006-2007 Alicia J. LeBlanc, all rights reserved

The Story Box (script)

Note: the full script is about half an hour long. There is a small violin solo that can be learned relatively quickly.

CHARACTERS

Grandma (Clara Smith)Mrs. KlineMary Smith Diana Smith

TIME: 1997

It is nighttime at GRANDMA’S house. The living room is a cluttered storage space, stacked with piles of records, books, magazines, and papers. Broken-down baskets, overflowing with trinkets and household objects, burry the couch and several chairs. Even the bookshelf is bursting at the seams with knickknacks, picture frames, and unfinished knitting projects. The coffee table in the center of the room is clear except for a plate with a stale bagel and a half-empty teacup. A trash can stands by the couch. Packing boxes, the most recent addition to the collection, stand strewn around the room. Cocooned in this chaos, GRANDMA sits in the only piece of furniture that isn’t serving as a shelf, her rocking chair. She is dressed in a nightgown and fingers a dog tag and engagement ring hanging on a chain around her neck. She is facing the audience like she is staring out of a window. A kitchen area stands on stage left. It is cluttered as well, the sink and table overflowing with dishes. The refrigerator is buried in newspaper clippings and photographs.

(There is a KNOCKING on the kitchen door. MRS. KLINE, a quick but graying woman in her sixties, opens the door part way. She stands facing MARY, a professional woman in her thirties, who is wearing a business suit and standing on the opposite side of the door.)

KLINE. Hello, Mary.

MARY. Hello, Mrs. Kline. (Pause.) May I come in?

(KLINE opens the door wider and stands to the side. MARY enters, followed by 16-year-old DIANA, who is listening to her walkman.)

KLINE. Who is this?

MARY. (Whisks off DIANA’S headphones.) This is my daughter, Diana.

KLINE. (Looks at MARY’S bare left hand.) I see.

(DIANA walks into the kitchen, looking around. Her walkman is still playing music, but the headphones hang around her neck.)

MARY. (To KLINE) Where is she?

KLINE. In her living room, and she had a panic attack when I started packing her things.

MARY. You started packing right in front of her?

KLINE. It is her house. What did you expect me to do? I told you this move would cause nothing but trouble.

MARY. I’m sure that the people at Clark Haven know exactly how to take care of her. (More to herself.) This whole thing would have gone more smoothly if I had been told earlier.

KLINE. Well, I’m sorry, if I just didn’t find the time, Mary, but I didn’t know what your last name was supposed to be now. And while you’ve been out fooling around, someone had to be here taking care of your responsibilities.

MARY. Well . . . I thank you for all you’ve done. I can handle it from here.

KLINE. Handle it?! She’s not a problem, Mary; she’s a person, and more than that she’s your mother, and you owe her better than this. Where have you been all this time anyway?

MARY. Passing my bar exam and working for a law firm in Denver. And my name is still Mary Smith. Perhaps you would have found me sooner if you weren’t busy looking in the gutter. (Opens the door.) Thank you for your help.

KLINE. (Picks up her coat.) Welcome home, Mary. (She exits, shutting the door behind her.)

DIANA. Dang.

(MARY crosses into the living room, surveying the mess as she comes. DIANA follows slowly. MARY stops when sees GRANDMA.)

MARY. Mom? (No response. MARY walks around the rocking chair and sees her MOTHER’S face for the first time. She is taken aback by the sight of the distant-looking old woman but quickly composes herself, crouches down to eye level, and clears her throat.) Mom?

GRANDMA. Didn’t come back. Why didn’t . . . come back.

MARY. I . . . uh

GRANDMA. Where is he?

MARY. Who?

GRANDMA. (Looks at MARY.) Henry? . . . didn’t come back.

MARY. Mom, Daddy’s gone.

(GRANDMA looks confused, then stares hard at MARY.)

GRANDMA. (Angrily.) Who are you?!

MARY. I’m . . .

GRANDMA. (Stands, and starts to move away from MARY.)

Who are you?! Who are you?!

MARY. (Reaches toward GRANDMA.) It’s all right.

GRANDMA. (Shirks away from MARY’S hand.) Who are you?! WHO ARE YOU?!

MARY. Mom, I just want to help you. (She steps forward.)

GRANDMA. (No break. Backs up again.) No. No! Who are you!

MARY. Mom . . .

GRANDMA. (No break.) Who are you!

MARY. Clara! (GRANDMA stops. She blinks. She starts looking around the room with a confused expression on her face, like she doesn’t know where she is. She begins murmuring incoherently. Her gaze falls on DIANA, who is startled speechless. GRANDMA starts walking towards her, and DIANA takes a step back. MARY approaches GRANDMA cautiously but firmly.) C’mon, Mom. You need to take a nap. (She turns GRANDMA toward SR.)

GRANDMA. No.

MARY. Yes, c’mon.

GRANDMA. (Weakening as she is led offstage.) No . . . no.

(MARY helps GRANDMA off SR. DIANA looks around the room. She stops her walkman and puts it on the table. Taking a step forward, something crunches under her foot. She bends down and picks up the brittle skeleton of a potted plant. Grimacing, she puts it on the table. MARY enters and drops her jacket on the couch.)

© 2005-2007 Alicia J. LeBlanc, all rights reserved

The following story has also been converted into a 15 minute play by Alicia Joy LeBlanc and Amanda Gonzalez. All rights reserved.

 

The Prince and the Pea

 

            Once upon a time, there was a beautiful princess. She loved horses, dancing, and running in the fields. She had long, full, curly, glossy hair, autumn sky blue eyes, and blemishless skin that you can only find in a princess who is filthy rich and was bathed in beauty treatments since birth.

          One day the princess’s mother and father, the king and queen, as it were, told the princess that it was time that she was married to a prince.

          So suitors came from far and wide, and long and deep, and over and under, and through and in between, to win the hand of the princess. But the princess didn’t want to marry just any prince. It had to be a real prince. She took a single pea, and placed it on a pedestal and said that a real prince would be able to divide it into a million equal pieces.

          So the first prince came. He wore a dorky black robe with huge sleeves because he had studied with the most learn’ed men in the kingdom’s monasteries. He could tell the princess the name of every star in the heavens, and could calculate the exact trajectory of a boulder launched from a catapult, which was a cool trick, I guess. Then came the fateful day when he was given the pea. And the prince took it and studied it for a month. He measured it, and sliced it with many different instruments that he had fashioned, but he could not divide the pea into a million equal pieces. So it was discovered that he was not a real prince, only one who had studied to look like a prince. But, there really was never any doubt about that. What was worse, he was a monastery dropout. So he left the castle in a huff.

          The second prince had pure white teeth that were perfectly aligned, a tan that never faded, and perfect brown hair that never moved out of place. He used phrases like “Hey doll!” and would bring bouquets of flowers to the princess everyday. Then came the fateful day when he was given the pea. After a thorough search through the indoor flower garden that used to be the Great Hall, the pea was found and held out to the prince. He stared at it for a moment, looked at the princess and said, “Do you eat one pea because you think you’re fat, ‘cause you could eat like, ten peas, or even a potato.” Obviously, this too was an impostor prince. It was later discovered that he was actually a Ken doll, animated by a mad scientist who lived on a lonely island off the coast of the kingdom. It is believed that he is still trying to perfect his creation to this day.

          The third prince came. He was a strong knight and well practiced in swordplay. He had blonde shoulder length hair and a British accent. He looked like Sean Bean in a suit of armor. He impressed the royal family with his expert swordsmanship, and amazingly accurate archery skills. Alas, though, the fateful day never came for him to divide the pea into a million pieces, because he tripped over a stray stone and tumbled over an embankment to a death that deeply affected all who saw it. We never did find out if he was a real prince or not.

          The king and queen and princess were pretty discouraged. “Where will we ever find a real prince,” they lamented. And it began to rain, hard, in a very dramatic example of pathetic fallacy. Then there was a knock at the door.

          The royal family leaned forward in their thrones, could this be, a real prince? The footman led into the Great Hall a dripping wet man, with a strong build, blue eyes, and dark hair.

          “Are you a prince?” the queen asked anxiously.

          “Me? Oh no, I was just wondering if you could give me directions to Ye Olde smithy? My horse threw a shoe,” the soaking stranger explained.

          The king, queen, and princess let out a sigh of disappointment and sank back into their seats. It was raining far too hard for them to allow the man to continue travel, so he stayed in the palace for a little while and was able to talk with the princess. They talked about horses, and dancing, and . . . fields and stuff.

And the princess thought: “(sigh) I wish he was a prince, because this guy is really nice.”

Then the man saw the pea and asked what it was for.

“Well, whoever can divide the pea into a million equal pieces is the prince I will marry.”

“Wow, I’ve never really heard a more absurd requirement for marriage before, but may I borrow the pea for a while.”

The princess was so discouraged over the last lot of princes that she acquiesced readily enough.

“Sure, here you are” she said handing him the pea. After all, all she had to do was get another pea from the castle kitchen.

“I shall return” said the man, and as it had stopped raining, the man left.

“What was his name?” asked the king of the princess.

“Oh, I don’t know” said the princess. They had talked about everything but names. “I’ll ask him when he comes back. He said he’ll return.”

But he didn’t return. The princess, waited for days, weeks, months, years, and the mysterious man, never returned.

“And I gave him the pea,” she grumbled. “It doesn’t matter anyway,” she sighed, “He wasn’t a prince.”

 Meanwhile, fake prince after fake prince tried to divide pea after pea into a million pieces. They used various methods, chopping it with a sword, shooting it with an arrow, boiling it in oil, even chewing it and spitting it out, (can I tell you how quickly that suitor was rejected). Again, the king, queen, and princess lapsed into despondency. Then there came knock at the door.

“Who is it?” sighed the king.

And in came the tall, dark, handsome stranger, though he was dry this time.  

“Hi” he said.

“Don’t you ‘hi’ me,” exclaimed the princess. “Two years! You never call, you never write! I don’t know if you’re dead or alive, and then you show up one day and all you have to say for yourself is ‘hi’?”

“I’ve been a little busy,” said the man.

“Doing what, pray tell?”

“I was hoping you would ask,” the man replied with a twinkle in his eye. And he led the princess outside to a pair of horses. They rode together to a field on the far side of the kingdom.

“I asked every farmer I could find, and then I searched the whole kingdom until I found just the right field,” the man explained.

“What are you talking about?” asked the princess.

          “This,” the man replied indicating a field of pea plants. He picked up a bowl full of peas. “One million,” he said. “All of these came from the pea you gave me at the castle. It takes a while to get a crop that will produce one million peas though, but here you are. Can we get married now?”

          “Oh, whatever-your-name-is,” sighed the princess, “I can’t marry you, you’re not a prince.”

           And the two paraded to the palace, presented their pathetic present of peas, and parted . . . forever.

 

The End

 

 

 

“WAIT A SECOND!!!!!!!!” comes a yell from across the moat.

 

It’s the monastery dropout, rudely sticking his head back into the story when he had been banned from the palace forevermore on pain of death and . . .

 

“Yeah, yeah, know all that, but before your majesties behead me, I have to make a complaint here. This story it, it just isn’t logical.” He comes bursting into the castle, dragging the still unnamed suitor behind him.

 

And what do you mean?” roars the annoyed king.

 

“Well, for instance look right here, look at the title,” says the learn’ed man. “Go ahead, look:

 

 

The Prince and the Pea

 

“Now the implication of this title is that there is, in fact, a prince, am I right?”

 

The royal family nods stupidly.

 

“But there hasn’t been one prince named in this entire story. What’s up with that? And for another thing, and this is the real kicker, look at what the princess says in paragraph three. Look!

 

“She took a single pea, and placed it on a pedestal and said that a real prince would be able to divide it into a million equal pieces.

 

“The princess herself states that a real prince would be able to divide the pea into a million equal pieces. This man was able to do so, thus, by your own definition, this man, whatever-his-name-is, must be a prince.”

 

“He has a point there” says the queen. 

 

“What is your name lad?” asks the King of the man.

 

“Claude”

 

“Claude?!” All present story characters, and a few who are not present, gasp the name so loudly that is shakes the walls of the Great Hall.

 

“Yes, C. . .Claude” stammers the helpless man.

 

“Well, years ago the Prince Claude was kidnapped from the neighboring kingdom, it was never discovered what became of him,” the king relates.

 

“Hmmm. I wonder if there could be a connection,” ponders the queen.

 

“Obviously” says the learn’ed man rolling his eyes.

 

“Prince Claude!” says the princess rushing to embrace him.

 

“Princess I-don’t-know-your-name!” exclaims the prince.

 

“Bonnie” she smiles.

 

“My Bonnie Princess!” beams the prince and gives her a passionate kiss. And there is a romantic swell in the music, and bells ringing, and cartoon birds chirping, and single tears being wiped off of cheeks.

 

And so Bonnie and Claude were married and they lived happily ever after.

 

The . . .

 

“Actually, it’s a mathematical improbability that they would live happily ever after,” says the learn’ed man. “Statistically speaking . . .”

 

“SHUT UP! Or I’ll have thee boiled in oil!” bellows the king.

 

“Oookay”

 

THE END.

 

© 2006 Alicia Joy LeBlanc, all rights reserved.

 

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