The Alchemist – Episode 3 – Hell’s Chateau

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Below we present the complete text of “Hell’s Chateau”, episode 3 of our new Two Fisted Cosmic Horror serial; The Alchemist. This is a brand new (unpublished) series (featuring Antoine Duvalier and Brigitte LeGrande). If you would like to see these new stories advance from being drafts into polished publications then please consider supporting us by purchasing one or more of our previously published titles (they’re only $25.99 (AUD), great value for a whole night of entertainment for 6 – 8 people). Every sale directly funds the production of new stories.

Two Fisted Cosmic Horror - CH001 - The Alchemist
Two-Fisted Cosmic Horror – CH001 – The Alchemist
Recommended for mature audiences - may contain adult situations and themes
Recommended for mature audiences – may contain adult situations and themes

THE ALCHEMIST

EPISODE #3 – HELL’S CHATEAU

by Philip Craig Robotham

Cover Illustration by Miyukiko

Unedited Draft

Copyright 2016 Philip Craig Robotham

Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) Edition.

CC by-nc-nd 4.0
CC by-nc-nd 4.0

This play is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) International license. This play may not be commercially reproduced, performed, or sold. Non-commercial production, performance, and reproduction are allowed under this license so long as attribution is maintained. No derivative content or use is allowed. It can be freely shared in its current form (without change) under this license. If you would like to purchase one or more copies of this work (for your own personal non-commercial use, or to help financially support the author) then please return to https://www.weirdworlstudios.com and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

Other works by this author can be found at the author’s website: https://www.weirdworldstudios.com or through select, online book retailers.

Serial #6: The Alchemist

Trent Stone and Tess Carter are approached by a young French count (Antoine Duvalier) who, after the sudden death of his brother, is concerned that he has been cursed.  He asks for their help and they travel to France where they meet his childhood friend (Brigitte LeGrande), encounter a spooky chateau, numerous attempts on Antoine’s life, and pursue an underlying mystery involving a centuries-long quest for revenge. Can they unravel this mystery before the young count’s life is lost? Tune in thrill to the excitement of “The Alchemist” and find out for yourself.

Episodes in the Host Your Own “Old Time Radio Drama” series are designed to provide a fun dinner party experience for 6–8 participants. Read along, taking on the role of one or more of the characters in the story, and listen as the exciting drama unfolds. This is the theater of the mind, where the special effects are only limited by your imagination, and your participation will build a memory that you’ll treasure for years to come.

HELL’S CHATEAU

CAST LIST

NARRATOR: The Narrator

TERESA CARTER: Our heroine and reporter

TRENT STONE: Our hero and adventurer

ANTOINE Duvalier: COMTE of the CHATEAU Duvalier

BRIGITTE LeGRANDE: Childhood friend of Antoine’s

VILLAGERS #1- #3: Attendees of the funeral

PRIEST: Priest officiating the funeral

GAVROSH: Child from Village

CHARLES: Son of the Alchemist

SCENE 10: (EXT) FUNERAL (PRIEST, ANTOINE, BRIGITTE, TRENT, TESS, VILLAGERS)

  1. MUSIC: OPENING THEME – LET IT FINISH.
  2. NARRATOR: Visiting with their friend, Comte Antoine Duvalier and his companion Brigitte LeGrande, Tess and Trent learn the details of the ancient family curse that afflicts Antoine’s house. Now they attend the funeral of Pierre, the recently deceased family retainer, for whose funeral Antoine has returned.
  3. SOUND: OUTSIDE AMBIANCE, OCCASIONAL BIRD, LIGHT BREEZE – ESTABLISH AND UNDER
  4. PRIEST: (FADE IN) O God, whose Son Jesus Christ was laid in a tomb: bless, we pray, this grave as the place where the body of Pierre your servant may rest in peace, through your Son, who is the resurrection and the life; who died and is alive and reigns with you now and forever. Comfort those who have been left behind and raise Pierre to life eternal on the last day. Amen.
  5. ALL: Amen
  6. VILLAGERS AND ANTOINE: (VARIOUS TOWNSFOLK GIVING MURMURED CONDOLENCES TO ANTOINE AND ANTOINE GIVING MUTED THANKS).
  7. TESS: (UNDERTONE) You, know Trent. I still don’t understand why Pierre kept that document from Antoine. You’d think it would have helped him to prepare himself against the future.
  8. TRENT: Perhaps Pierre didn’t believe in the curse either. Perhaps he wished to protect Antoine. Who knows? I think we can safely assume that the reason is now buried with Pierre and will likely never be known.
  9. TESS: I guess. (BEAT) Do we know how Pierre died?
  10. TRENT: The porter at the train station said something about a heart attack. Why? What are you thinking?
  11. TESS: Perhaps I’m being paranoid, but Pierre’s death would be one of the few things that would guarantee Antoine’s return home… if someone were plotting to kill him. Of course, it could all be a simple, if odd, coincidence.
  12. TRENT: It could. There are too many options on the table (both natural and supernatural). We need to start narrowing some of these possibilities down.
  13. TESS: Mmmm.
  14. PRIEST: (FADE UP) My dear Comte, I am so sorry for your loss. And you my dear… my condolences. Pierre will be missed by all of us.
  15. BRIGITTE: Thank you, Father. The service was beautiful.
  16. SOUND: STEPS APPROACH – LET THEM FINISH.
  17. ANTOINE: Well, I guess that is it. So short a ceremony seems a small and inadequate remembrance for all the years of a life. We really are like leaves in the wind, are we not? Here today and gone tomorrow.
  18. BRIGITTE: Pierre remains, Antoine. In your heart and mind, as also in mine. This is the fate of us all eventually. The natural order plays out as it has done for countless millennia, and will do, for countless more.
  19. TRENT: I doubt he would have wished you to fall into melancholy, Antoine, Brigitte. Honour his passing in the only way anyone can. Remember him with fondness and determine to make the most of the time you have been given.
  20. ANTOINE: And how long do you think that will be Monsieur Stone?
  21. TRENT: That remains to be seen Antoine, but if I have anything to say about it I expect you to live a long and happy life. Come, I think it is time you showed us this Chateau of yours.
  22. MUSIC: NEUTRAL SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.

SCENE 11 (EXT) CHATEAU GROUNDS (TRENT, TESS, BRIGITTE, ANTOINE)

  1. SOUND: CAR DRIVES UP AND COMES TO A STOP – LET IT FINISH.
  2. SOUND: CAR DOORS OPEN AND CLOSE – LET IT FINISH.
  3. TESS: Whoah! I had no idea!
  4. TRENT: Indeed.
  5. ANTOINE: Welcome to my humble home.
  6. TESS: I’m glad you’re smiling while you say that. I mean, you said your family chateau had withstood war, but…
  7. TRENT: Yes. I have to admit to being rather surprised as well. It’s…
  8. ANTOINE: Enormous? Yes. A castle? Also true. But most of it is uninhabitable. Crumbling towers, rotted floors. And though I have the wealth, I have little inclination toward doing the repairs. Come on, we are staying in the guest house. It’s around the back and the only liveable part of the place… It is also where I grew up and feel most at home.
  9. BRIGITTE: Antoine, look out!
  10. SOUND: SMASH OF MASONRY – LET IT FINISH.
  11. TRENT: It came from up there. (BEAT) That was close!
  12. ANTOINE: As I said, crumbling towers. It’s a miracle the place is standing at all.
  13. CHILD: (CREEPY CHILDISH GIGGLING LAUGHTER IN THE DISTANCE) Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
  14. TESS: Did you hear that? Where did it come from?
  15. TRENT: Up there, I think Tess, on the castle roof.
  16. ANTOINE: (DISGUSTED) Kids! (BEAT) (TO TRENT TESS AND BRIGITTE) Don’t look so put out. They break into the castle sometimes… as a dare.
  17. TRENT: They might have killed you!
  18. ANTOINE: But they didn’t. If there really is a curse at work, I suspect it would result in something more likely of success than this series of near misses. Let’s go get unpacked.
  19. TESS: But what about the trespassers?
  20. TRENT: Yes, you do seem to be taking this with a surprising lack of concern, Antoine.
  21. ANTOINE: They are just village children. We’ll go around to the guest house and give them a chance to make good their escape. We’ll come back later and make sure they are gone.
  22. TESS: (DOUBTFUL) If you think that’s best…
  23. ANTOINE: I do. Brigitte? Your arm?
  24. BRIGITTE: (CHEERFUL) Oh, Antoine, is it good to be home?
  25. ANTOINE: I am warming up to it.
  26. SOUND: FEET START WALKING AWAY – FADE UNDER
  27. TESS: (UNDERTONE) I’m beginning to feel there’s something really screwy going on here.
  28. TRENT: (MUSING) Yes… I’m beginning to agree. And our host is beginning to slip back into the role of the young aristocrat.
  29. TESS: How so?
  30. TRENT: He’s left us to carry his bags.
  31. MUSIC: IRONIC SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.

 

SCENE 12: (INT) THE GUEST HOUSE AT THE CHATEAU (TRENT, TESS, ANTOINE, BRIGITTE)

  1. TESS: Ugh!
  2. SOUND: CLONK OF SUITCASES – LET IT FINISH.
  3. TESS: What have you got in here, Brigitte? Bowling balls?
  4. BRIGITTE: Oh, no! Tess, you didn’t bring those bags all the way up here on your own?
  5. TRENT: Ugh!
  6. SOUND: CLONK OF A SUITCASES – LET IT FINISH.
  7. TRENT: Nope. I helped.
  8. BRIGITTE: (LAUGHING) Oh, Antoine, look what has happened. We’ve been so caught up in our memories, we’ve neglected your new friends.
  9. ANTOINE: I only wanted to show you around. We would have gone back for the car and driven it around here to unload.
  10. TRENT: Now he tells us!
  11. TESS: (LAUGHING) Oh, the exercise will have done us good.
  12. BRIGITTE: If you say so. At least you will work up an appetite.
  13. TESS: Speaking of which, what’s cooking? We’re several hours past my usual lunch time and I’m starved.
  14. TRENT: And before you suggest it, Miss Carter doesn’t cook.
  15. TESS: Hey!
  16. TRENT: Should I list your culinary disasters by date or would you prefer me to do it alphabetically?
  17. TESS: It’s probably true, but you still shouldn’t say it.
  18. TRENT: (DRILY) Uh-huh.
  19. BRIGITTE: Well. It looks like it’s going to fall to me then.
  20. TRENT: Oh no you don’t. I’m a dab hand in the kitchen. It’d be my pleasure.
  21. ANTOINE: (DUBIOUS) Monsieur, you are in France. I’m not sure that…
  22. TRENT: You can thank me later, Antoine. Just point me at the kitchen.
  23. BRIGITTE: This way, Mr. Stone. The kitchen should still be fully stocked (or very nearly so).
  24. SOUND: TWO SETS OF FOOTSTEPS DEPARTING. DOOR OPENS AND CLOSES – LET IT FINISH.
  25. TESS: So, Antoine, this is where you grew up.
  26. ANTOINE: Yes. My brother and I. Pierre raised us in this house.
  27. TESS: It’s lovely. How many bedrooms does it have?
  28. ANTOINE: Six. All upstairs.
  29. TESS: I’m still amazed at the size of your estate. I mean this was more like what I pictured when you mentioned a chateau. But this is only your guest-house.
  30. ANTOINE: Well, it’s my home now. In fact, it always has been. Does it bother you?
  31. TESS: Pardon?
  32. ANTOINE: My wealth. Does it bother you? Only I noticed in America that many of your countrymen, while they admire money, are also a little intimidated by it.
  33. TESS: Maybe. Just a little. I can happily sit in a tribal chieftains hut halfway up the Amazon… but I don’t spend a lot of time with the nobility.
  34. ANTOINE: And I don’t spend a great deal of time among tribal chieftains. Most people either fear me or fawn over me. It makes it difficult to make friends.
  35. TESS: Well, you’ve nothing to worry about there. I’ve never been afraid of much. And Trent will tell you I’m not the type to fawn over anyone.
  36. ANTOINE: Not even your fiancé?
  37. TESS: We have an understanding. We’re engaged but Trent doesn’t ask me to play the compliant doe-eyed girl-Friday and, in return, I don’t punch him in the nose.
  38. ANTOINE: (LAUGHING) I see.
  39. TESS: Actually, I rather hoped we’d have set a wedding date by now. He keeps finding new excuses to put it off.
  40. ANTOINE: Men are always afraid of losing their freedom. He will come around. He is obviously head over heels for you.
  41. TESS: You think so? I’d occasionally like him to loosen up a little and show it. He’s always so stuffy and tense.
  42. ANTOINE: He’s a man of honor. He maintains a greater distance than is strictly necessary out of a desire to show you respect… but he is always aware of you, even when you are away from him. You are a team, in many ways a well-oiled machine, and I think he fears the impact marriage will have on your partnership.
  43. TESS: You know Antoine, I was wrong when I suggested you were rather thick back at the cafe. You’re way more perceptive than I at first thought.
  44. ANTOINE: Why thank you, mademoiselle.
  45. TESS: So is that why you are so reserved with Brigitte?
  46. ANTOINE: What? No! She loved my brother. It would be… no! You misunderstand.
  47. TESS: Actually, I take it back. You are as clueless as you at first seemed. (BEAT AND SUDDENLY SERIOUS) That was a long time ago, Antoine. You were still kids when that was true (if it ever really was). Brigitte has not been in love with your brother for a very long time.
  48. ANTOINE: But then? Why has she continued to…?
  49. TESS: Here it comes. The penny is about to drop. (BEAT) Antoine, I think you’d best do some thinking about this. She’s waited a fairly long time. But nobody waits forever.
  50. SOUND: DOOR OPENS AND CLOSES – LET IT FINISH.
  51. TRENT: And so I return, voila, bearing our luncheon, though well into the afternoon we may be. Stale bread, a selection of cheeses and some sausage that was hanging in the larder. I doubt even you could mess this up, Tess.
  52. TESS: Never set me a challenge. (BEAT) Where’s Brigitte?
  53. TRENT: She said something about getting some wine from the cellar. I’m sure she’ll be along in just a…
  54. SOUND: DOOR OPENS AND CLOSES AGAIN – LET IT FINISH.
  55. TRENT: And here she is.
  56. BRIGITTE: And what is a meal without wine? It simply wouldn’t be French!
  57. ANTOINE: Wonderful. Why don’t we take it on the patio? The day is gorgeous and the wine will help cover the taste of the stale bread. After that we’ll bring the car around, unpack and go into the chateau to make sure our unwanted guests are gone.
  58. MUSIC: NEUTRAL SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.

SCENE 13: (INT) THE CHATEAU (TRENT, TESS, ANTOINE, BRIGITTE)

  1. SOUND: DOOR CREAKS SHUT – LET IT FINISH.
  2. TESS: You should think about renting this place out as a haunted house with a door like that.
  3. ANTOINE: It’s not as bad as all that. (BEAT) We’ve got electric light…
  4. SOUND: CLICK – LET IT FINISH.
  5. SOUND: HUM OF ELECTRIC LIGHT – ESTABLISH AND UNDER.
  6. ANTOINE: … and a telephone.
  7. TESS: All the modern conveniences, I see.
  8. ANTOINE: You mock, but we even have a radio transmitter in the north tower.
  9. TRENT: So, what now?
  10. ANTOINE: Now, I will give you a very thorough (LOUDLY) and loud (BACK TO NORMAL) tour of the chateau. We’ll leave the door open so that the kids can escape if, by any chance, they are still here, and we’ll go and see if the kitchen window is broken – that’s where they usually get in.
  11. BRIGITTE: Antoine, you are too soft-hearted by half. Anyone else would call the gendarmerie.
  12. ANTOINE: I still remember what it was like to be young and irresponsible. Come let me show you around. This is, of course, the main entrance hall with, as you can see, the great candelabra and stairs leading to the high balcony… (FADE OUT)
  13. ANTOINE: (FADE IN)… and here we come to one of the areas we have had to close off. The floors are now too rotted and dangerous. In the days of the chateau’s grandeur, however, this passageway led to the upper balconies around the…
  14. BRIGITTE: Sacre bleu!
  15. TESS: Brigitte, what’s the matter?
  16. BRIGITTE: Over there, against the wall. I thought it was a pile of rags. It’s…
  17. TRENT: A body. A child’s body.
  18. SOUND: STEP AND CREAKING BOARD – LET IT FINISH.
  19. TRENT: No, wait! This floor is deadly. I’m not sure it will support our weight. (BEAT) I’ll go. I’ll follow the beams.
  20. TESS: Be careful.
  21. SOUND: SLOW CREAKING STEPS, THEN SOME ACCELERATED STEPS – LET IT FINISH.
  22. TRENT: I’m here. It’s a little girl. Her neck is broken. The body’s cool but there are no signs of putrefaction. I’d say this had to have happened very recently. I don’t think she fell either. The roof’s intact. I can’t see anywhere she could have fallen from.
  23. TESS: Murder, then.
  24. TRENT: Yes, I think so.
  25. BRIGITTE: (DISTRAUGHT) The poor child.
  26. TRENT: Antoine, I think we’d better use that phone of yours and call the police.
  27. SOUND: OMINOUS SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.

SCENE 14: (INT) ENTRANCE HALL  (TRENT, TESS, ANTOINE, BRIGITTE)

  1. SOUND: PHONE HANDSET CLICKING – LET IT FINISH.
  2. ANTOINE: Hello! Operator! Is anyone there?
  3. SOUND: PHONE HANDSET CLICKING – LET IT FINISH.
  4. ANTOINE: I think the line has been cut.
  5. SOUND: SHORT CIRCUIT ZAP AND CRACKLE – LET IT FINISH.
  6. BRIGITTE: And there go the lights.
  7. TESS: No wait, I can see some light coming from the Guest House. It must still have… actually something’s wrong there too. It’s flickering oddly.
  8. TRENT: It’s on fire. The guest house is burning.
  9. ANTOINE: No! I have to…
  10. TRENT: No Antoine, it’s too late. You’ll only get yourself killed going in there now. That blaze has taken the whole building.
  11. ANTOINE: Argh. What is happening here?
  12. TRENT: I don’t know, but I think things are escalating. Can we take the car back down to the village?
  13. BRIGITTE: We should be able to…
  14. SOUND: EXPLOSION IN DISTANCE – LET IT FINISH.
  15. TESS: Or not! It appears that someone wants us to stay put.
  16. GAVROSH: No! Oh no! Please, leave me alone!
  17. SOUND: BRIEF DISTANT RUNNING CHILD’S FOOTSTEPS – FADE.
  18. TRENT: It does, doesn’t it. And I think someone’s dangling some bait right in front of us.
  19. TESS: It’d be a shame to keep them waiting, now, wouldn’t it?
  20. TRENT: I agree. Come on. Up the stairs, let’s get this over with.
  21. MUSIC: ACTION SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.

SCENE 15: (INT) UPSTAIRS IN THE CHATEAU  (TRENT, TESS, BRIGITTE, ANTOINE, GAVROSH)

  1. SOUND: RUNNING FEET (THE GROUP) – LET IT FINISH.
  2. BRIGITTE: Can one of you explain to me the reason we are running towards danger?
  3. TRENT: Danger is never overcome by running away.
  4. BRIGITTE: I don’t know, Monsieur Stone… he who fights and runs away…? Sometimes the wisest course does not take you directly into the firing line
  5. TRENT: Perhaps, but not today. I have never been considered particularly wise, so today we fight. (BEAT) Wait…
  6. SOUND: CHILD’S RUNNING FEET, DOOR CLOSES – LET IT FINISH.
  7. TRENT: Down there. Quickly.
  8. SOUND: QUICK FOOTSTEPS – LET IT FINISH.
  9. TRENT: (STAGE WHISPER) I think our little trespasser is inside this room. Antoine, where does it lead?
  10. ANTOINE: (STAGE WHISPER) It’s nothing but a cloakroom. No way out. All it contains is a wardrobe.
  11. TRENT: Okay…
  12. SOUND: DOOR CREAKS OPEN – LET IT FINISH.
  13. TESS: (STAGE WHISPER) Trent… in the cupboard.
  14. TRENT: I see it.
  15. SOUND: CREAKING FOOTSTEPS (GROUP) – LET IT FINISH.
  16. GAVROSH: (WHIMPERING IN FEAR)
  17. TRENT: It’s alright, we know you’re in there!
  18. SOUND: CUPBOARD DOOR OPENING – LET IT FINISH.
  19. GAVROSH: No! He’ll kill me. We were only supposed to scare you away. I can’t find Marielle and he is trying to kill us!
  20. TESS: Easy, son. My name’s Tess. What’s yours?
  21. GAVROSH: (SNIFFLING) I’m Gavrosh.
  22. TESS: Who’s trying to kill you, Gavrosh? We can help you if you’ll let us.
  23. GAVROSH: The banker. He paid my sister and me to come here and try to scare the Comte. But then we got scared and tried to leave. He got Marielle. I heard her scream. I was hiding and I ran away. I’m such a coward.
  24. TESS: Easy Gavrosh, you’re just a little boy. How old are you? Eight?
  25. GAVROSH: Yes.
  26. TESS: It’s going to be all right. But right now, we have to get you out of here. Come on.
  27. GAVROSH: Yes, mademoiselle.
  28. SOUND: FAINT CREAKING ROPE – ESTABLISH AND UNDER.
  29. BRIGITTE: Does anyone else hear that?
  30. ANTOINE: Yes, it sounds like it is coming from the hall.
  31. TRENT: Everyone back outside. We need to take a look.
  32. SOUND: FOOTSTEPS – LET IT FINISH.
  33. TRENT: It’s coming from around this corner its…
  34. SOUND: MORE FOOTSTEPS – LET IT FINISH.
  35. SOUND: CREAKING ROPE – FADE UP.
  36. BRIGITTE: Oh. Oh dear!
  37. TESS: Is that?
  38. TRENT: Yes. The corpse looks pretty fresh.
  39. TESS: Suicide?
  40. TRENT: Maybe. There’s something about the noose that doesn’t look quite right, though. Here, Antoine, help me (GRUNT) get it down.
  41. ANTOINE: Ugh! The smell.
  42. SOUND: HEAVY BODY DROP – LET IT FINISH.
  43. TESS: Ugh! It’s even worse now.
  44. TRENT: I think we can rule out suicide. He’s been disemboweled.
  45. TESS: Antoine, do you recognize him?
  46. ANTOINE: Yes. And so do you. It is Monsieur Taggart from the Bank.
  47. TESS: Oh, how awful.
  48. BRIGITTE: (DARKLY) It couldn’t have happened to a nicer man. (BEAT) (DEFENSIVELY) What? (BEAT) We were all thinking it.
  49. TESS: Antoine, is there any reason why Monsieur Taggart would hire children to try and scare you away?
  50. BRIGITTE: He was quite vocal in his opposition to Antoine taking over management of the estate. I suspect he wished it to fall to him and the bank. Perhaps, he thought he would be made a trustee.
  51. ANTOINE: The idiot. I would never have trusted him with the estate. In fact, it was my intention to find another bank as soon as possible. My brother was suspicious that Taggart had been skimming from our funds for some time.
  52. TRENT: That’s all quite illuminating but it does fail to deal with one rather important question.
  53. ANTOINE: And what’s that?
  54. TRENT: If Monsieur Taggart didn’t kill himself, then who did?
  55. MUSIC: OMINOUS SCENE ENDER – LET IT FINISH.
  56. MUSIC: CLOSING THEME AND CREDITS – LET IT FINISH.

CASTING SHEETS — MAJOR CHARACTERS

TRENT STONE: Hello, I’m Trent Stone, Adventurer. I’m always in command of the situation (except perhaps, when it comes to Tess — who can easily throw me for a loop). I say things like “indeed,” “hmmm,” and “I see” a lot, and speak in a way that friends of Clark Kent would find very familiar. I’m smart, observant, and quick to use my fists when required (but never impulsive). I sound like Joe College but I’m blue collar through and through. My lack of higher education is something of an embarrassment to me (but I’d never let on).

I’m aware of Tess’s urgency about tying the knot, but mostly I just ignore it and keep on working.

TERESA CARTER: Hiya. Everyone calls me Tess. I’m the take-no-prisoners sort who can hold her own in the man’s world that is the concrete jungle of Star City. I’m college educated but have a mean right hook. I’m a reporter by training and a stickybeak by inclination — this tends to get me in trouble. Curious, playful, and smart, that’s me! But I’m also painfully honest, easily moved by the troubles of others, and as protective as a tigress of my friends. Now that Trent’s owned up to his feelings about me and we’re engaged, it’s time to set a date. But Trent keeps dragging his feet. I’m not getting any younger, you know?

ANTOINE Duvalier: Bonjour. I am the Comte du Chateau Duvalier (Count of Duvalier Castle) and I have discovered that the legendary curse, rumored to have killed off every male heir to the title of my family estate for generations, is not so legendary after all. My brother is dead, and I am the last of my line. I must get to the bottom of this mystery before I, too, am overtaken by it.

BRIGITTE LeGRANDE: I am Brigitte LeGrande. I grew up with Antoine and his brother. Many years ago I loved the brother (though it was not reciprocated), but I was merely a child. It has been a great many years since that was true but Antoine has not realized how things have changed. Out of respect for his brother’s memory, he resists seeing me as more than a friend. Still, I am patient. I am smart. I will help him deal with this, oh so ridiculous, curse. Then, we shall see what we shall see.

CASTING SHEETS — MINOR CHARACTERS

NARRATOR: Hello, I am your narrator. I introduce the cold stormy nights on which our stories take place, the dark alleys, and darker personalities who inhabit the lonely city. It is my job to set the scene and establish the serious tone of suspense and intrigue that will carry the story forward. It is also my job to remind listeners of what came before in a calm, trustworthy voice and ensure that everyone is oriented to where we are and where we are going.

VILLAGERS: While not close to the family, we are sympathetic to the loss of the heir to the house of Du Valier. We have come out to the funeral to show our respects.

PRIEST: It is my job to offer comfort and counsel to those who are suffering grief. I perform the services to help the bereaved say their goodbyes.

GAVROSH: I am a boy, full of mischief and fun, but now frightened beyond words by the events surrounding me. My sister has been lost and I am so very, very afraid that I will be next.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Philip Craig Robotham grew up in a house full of books and has held numerous jobs as a teacher, computer programmer, graphic and web designer, e-learning consultant and, most recently, writer. He currently lives in Sydney, Australia with his wife and two sons. When he was younger and fitter he enjoyed martial arts, but in recent years his hobbies have tended towards more sedate fare (board games, movies, books, and role-playing games).

He is extremely grateful for the encouragement he receives from his biggest fans — his wife and two boys — all of whom read and enjoy his scripts and in general make his life worth living.

You can contact the author regarding performance rights (or simply to say hello) through his website: https://www.weirdworldstudios.com.

Don’t forget to check out the free sample portions of our titles at https://www.weirdworldstudios.com/product-category/our-products/.

The Alchemist

This post and all its content is copyright © 2013 Philip Craig Robotham and has been released under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) license. This play cannot be reproduced, shared, or performed commercially without the written permission of the author. The production of derivative content, merchandise, or creative works and materials is expressly forbidden under this agreement. However you may share, reproduce, and perform this play freely so long as authorship is acknowledged, no money changes hands, and the play is not modified in any way.

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