Time Cut for Willy
Cast of Characters:
William (Willy) Conrad Barns: Eighteen and looks younger. Small boned and effeminate with blonde hair and blue eyes. Pretty boy.
Susan (Sam) Allison Macmillan: Petite redhead with a luscious body and emerald eyes. Just fifteen years old.
Marcus Dewitt: Rockwall Police officer. Short and broad. A man with no sympathy for the rich because he was born poor.
James Theodore (J.T.) Macmillan: Married after he made his fortune as a wildcat oil driller. Sam’s father and loves her intensely.
Orby Miller: Rockwall Police Detective. A man past his prime who’s seen too much. Just biding his time to retirement.
Bull: A black jail prisoner that preys on whites that are intimidated by his muscle-bound body. Arrogant and prejudiced.
Fatback: Slender, light skinned black facing a long bid in prison.
Hoodlum: Short and brown. Quiet. A follower that just wants to get along.
Jail Guard One: Black with a military bearing. Professional that treats his charges respectfully.
Jail Guard Two: Fat, sloppy white man. Cruel eyes. Acts as if it’s his job to punish prisoners.
Prisoner Cell-1: Psychotic young black man. Made crazy by being repeatedly raped before he was placed in protective custody.
Prisoner Cell-3: White ex-gang member. Big and covered in tattoos. In protective custody because there’s a hit out on him for getting out of his gang. Hates all blacks and homosexuals.
Prison Guard-1: A kind black lady that sympathizes with the prisoners she guards and tries to be kind.
Prison Guard-2: White, skinny and always trying to prove he’s tough by being hard on the prisoners he guards. Callous.
(Lynard Skynard’s “Free Bird” is heard and the curtain rises to reveal a rusty Ford truck at center stage sitting on a grassy knoll, bathed in moonlight’s soft glow. The passenger door opens and a tiny redhead climbs out in a frilly sundress followed by a slim boy in jeans. He leans the seat forward and pulls out a trash can to hand to the girl before leaning back in and getting a plaid blanket that he shakes and starts to spread on the ground.)
Sam: Hurry! I’ve got to be home early tonight or Father will be in a tizzy. You don’t know what he’s like: a crazy man when I’m out with you. Dad doesn’t read and has no idea why anyone would write anything but a check.
Willy: (Turning to take the trash can from Sam with one hand while the other arm pulls her close and he kisses her.) He’ll just have to get used to me. Even if having a writer for a son-in-law gags him.
Sam: (Smiling up at Willy.) Set that down. It’s your 18th birthday. We have to celebrate in style. Don’t you want your present? (Sam giggles). Open the champagne, I’ve got glasses.
Willy: (Sets the trash can down on one corner of the blanket and pulls a bottle out to start fumbling with the foil and wire seal.) Couldn’t we celebrate with a bottle of Morgan David? At least that has a civilized screw on cap. You know they only continue to use these barbarous contraptions to keep the peasants in their place.
Sam: (Giggling as she pulls wine flutes from her purse and flings one away.) Oops! We’ll have to share. One broke.
Willy: (Forces the cork to surrender and sprays them both.) Never had this problem with screw caps. (Leans down to lick a drop of wine from Sam’s nose.) I see there are advantages.
Sam: (Holds out the glass for filling.) I’ll have you know this was bottled before screw caps were invented. It’s the best in my dad’s cellar, he’s very proud of it. He’ll scream and fire the maid when he finds a bottle missing. (Lifting the glass high.) To us! May our lives be drenched in vintage champagne. (Drinks the glass dry and holds it out for a refill that she passes to Willy.)
Willy: (Sipping gingerly.) Delicious! Too bad I’m driving, that’s worth wrestling a cork for. It’s doubtful our lives will be so rich. You’re to marry a poor boy that wants to write the Great American Novel. Sure formula for poverty.
Sam: (Taking the glass and finishing the wine before holding it out imperiously for a refill.) Not so. I am a very rich bitch with a trust fund. We’ll drink any wine we like and live in style. I do hope a lack of poverty won’t compromise your literacy credentials. Sit down. Present time is near.
Willy: (Sits watching as Sam rummages in her bag to come out with a silver cigarette case.) Sam! Do you have to smoke. I hate drugs. They ruin everything.
Sam: (Turns to lean in the truck and push in the lighter as she takes out a joint and throws the case on the dash.) Tonight I need a little smoke. Sorry! (She turns back to the truck as she inhales deeply and turns back to talk as she blows out the smoke.) You sure you don’t want a hit? It’s your birthday.
Willy: (Looking disappointed.) No.
Sam: (Fills her lungs again and leans in the truck to put the joint out in the ashtray.) Okay. I only wanted a little. (Turns back and speaks as she starts to unbutton her dress.) It’s time to unwrap your present.
Willy: (Looking stunned but can’t look away.) What are you doing?
Sam: Silly Willy! I’m unwrapping your present for you. Did you want to do it yourself? I’ll let you do anything you want.
Willy: Sam, you don’t have to do this. I can wait.
Sam: I can’t and won’t. Either you do it or I use a carrot. I’m tired of being called Virgin Mary. Girls are bitches. (Sam shimmies out of her panties and then flows down into Willy’s arms to strip off his shirt and shuck his pants and drawers down to his boots.)
(The light dims as if the moon has drawn a shade of clouds to hide its face and give them privacy. We see their silhouettes roll over as Willy gains control. The sounds of passion echos as we see a hulking figure enter stage right and stop to watch from behind a bush. Suddenly he turns on a flashlight and we see he’s a policeman.)
Dewitt: Police! Don’t move, you’re both under arrest.
(Willy rolls off Sam and reaches to pull up his pants.)
Dewitt: Don’t make me shoot you, boy. Be still.
(The moon comes out to reveal the scene as Sam covers up with the blanket as Dewitt uses the flashlight like a pointer to take in the many aspects of the situation before him.)
Dewitt: Get out of that blanket where I can see you. I want you both to stand up and walk to the front of the truck. Don’t touch anything.
Sam: Can I get dressed?
Dewitt: (Gives an evil chuckle.) Don’t get shy now. No, you can’t get dressed. How old are you? I’ll need to see some I.D. so don’t lie. I don’t like liars.
(They move to the front of the truck with Willy shuffling and Sam trying to cover up with her hands as Dewitt plays the flashlight over her body. Then he leans in and turns on the headlights and they are both illuminated in bright light.)
Dewitt: (Coming out of the truck with the partially smoked joint from the ashtray.) Y’ ll having some party. Boy, you got pot, wine and a fine piece of pussy too; all you needed was enough brains to go somewhere private to enjoy it. Now, give me full names and ages.
Willy: (Shrugging.) William Conrad Barns, I’m 18 today.
Sam: (With one hand over her breast and the other at her crotch.) I’m Susan Allison Macmillan, 15, and my father is J.T. He’ll have your job for treating me this way.
Dewitt: (Glares at Sam and then turns to Willy.) Pervert! Lean on the hood. (Walks behind Willy and pulls his hands back to cuff him.) Your boyfriend’s going to prison and your daddy can’t do shit.
Sam: Stop! You can’t do that. It was all my idea.
Dewitt: You’re too young to be responsible for having stupid ideas, but lover-boy became a man today. (Takes out a cell phone.) It’s me, Marge. Didn’t want to put this on the air. Caught a child molester in the act up on Spark Top. The child is J.T.’s girl, Susan Allison Macmillan, you might give him a call after you send me some detectives and a four-wheel drive. We’ll need to secure the crime scene. The pervert is William Conrad Barns. Run him through and see what comes up. We’re right on top of Spark Top. They can’t miss us. (Hangs up and shakes out Sam’s dress and panties then walks to her holding the panties by the corner.) Get dressed.
Sam: (Dressing quickly.) Why are you doing this? It’s not his fault.
Dewitt: Because your daddy will protect you. You rich bitches are untouchable. It’s all your fault, and he’s going to prison. They’ll be glad to have such a cute boy for company down at the jail. (Then Dewitt begins to laugh.) I’ll see he gets special housing.
Sam: (Grabs Willy and hugs him tight.) I’m so sorry. I love you. (Starts to cry as Dewitt grabs her arm to pull her away.)
Dewitt: Get away from him. (Shoves Willy to the ground while he holds Sam up by the arm.)
Willy: (Angry and disappointed.) Happy-Fucking-Birthday!
(Willy turns away as Sam starts to sob loudly and the curtain falls.)
(The curtain rises and there are two offices that share a back wall. In one we see Willy in handcuffs sitting in a chair. In the other we see an older man with red hair stalking with furious energy. A gray-haired man in jeans enters stage right and walks to the office door where the man is walking around and stops to run his fingers through his hair before he enters.)
Det. Miller: (Enters with his right hand out and a smile on his face.) Mr. Macmillan. I’m Detective Miller. Let me say how sorry I . . .
J.T.: (Turning to face Miller and ignoring his hand.) Sorry my ass! Get my daughter in here now. No one fucks with my baby. Do you hear me, detective? I mean you.
Det. Miller: Sir, I already sent for your daughter to be brought here and we’re doing the paperwork to release her into your custody until the arraignment.
J.T.: What damn arraignment? There better not even be a record of Sam being arrested and you better all forget what happened.
Det. Miller: She says the pot and wine were hers. What can I do?
J.T.: You can do as you’re told. You make a deal with that fag boy and have him sign a confession accepting blame. Then you send his fairy ass to prison so he stays away from my daughter.
Det. Miller: How can . . .
J.T.: (Interrupting.) I don’t give a damn how. Just do it! (He sits.)
(Det. Miller exits stage right as a jail matron enters with Sam, opens the door, urges her to enter and then closes the door and stands guard outside it.)
J.T.: (Jumping up to rush to Sam to fold her in his arms and kiss the top of her head.) Sam, what in hell have you done this time? Damn, girl! What were you thinking? I knew that boy’d be trouble.
Sam: (Jerking away and wiping her eyes with her hands.) It wasn’t Willy’s fault. He hates drugs and won’t drink if he’s driving. He didn’t even want to make love to me. He said he’d wait. (Breaks down and collapses to the floor crying.)
J.T.: Don’t worry. You’ll be going home with me. It’s all been taken care of.
Sam: (Looks up with tears streaming and sniffles out a question.) What about Willy?
J.T.: Forget that fairy loser. He’s going to prison.
Sam: No! Please, Daddy. Don’t do this.
J.T.: Yes! Better him than you. You have a future. He has nothing.
Sam: I love Willy.
J.T.: You’ll get over it. Hush! Don’t blame me. You did it.
(Those words crush Sam’s resistance and she sits on the floor and cries as J.T. walks and watches her. Det. Miller enters stage left and uses a key to enter the office where Willy has been waiting.)
Det. Miller: Boy, you have screwed the pooch this time. (He goes over and takes the handcuffs off Willy.) Now, I’ve got a deal for you. You have two choices. You’ll either sign this confession and take full responsibility for pot, wine and sex with a minor or I’ll see that you get convicted and go to prison for the rest of your life. Do as I say and maybe I can talk the judge into giving you probation.
Willy: But the pot and wine were Sam’s and the sex was her idea too.
Det. Miller: Do you want to see Sam go to prison? You’re a man, you can take it. It’s worse for women. Do the right thing.
Willy: (Sits staring at the distance.) Are you sure about probation?
Det. Miller: (Looking smug as he senses weakness.) It’s your best chance. You were caught screwing J.T. Macmillan’s minor daughter. He hates you, Willy. If you don’t deal he’ll see you charged with child molestation. Do you want that?
Willy: No sir, but it was her idea.
Det. Miller: Grow up. You’re the adult. Last chance, (he lays the paper in front of Willy with a pen) sign that or you’ll never get out of prison. With me on your side you have a chance. Without me the jury will send you away for good.
Willy: (Looks down and reads the paper before him and signs it.) There. Now leave me alone.
Det. Miller: (Sticks his head out the door and yells.) Need an officer to get Mr. Barns processed.
(The officer comes and leads Willy away as Det. Miller exits stage left and reenters stage right to rejoin J.T. and Sam.)
Det. Miller: (Walks in smiling.) Here, sir. Read this.
J.T.: (Takes the paper and reads with a growing smile of his own.) Well done, Detective. (J.T. reaches in his picket to pull out a money clip with a wad of cash in it and peels off a handful of the green bills.) Have a few drinks on me next time you’re out.
Det. Miller: (Stares at the money in his hand before pocketing it.) Glad to be of service. If you ever need me for anything just call.
J.T.: We can leave now, right?
Det. Miller: (Scrambles to open the door.) Certainly. Sorry for the inconvenience and thank you.
(The curtain goes down as J.T. pulls Sam to her feet and leads her out of the office.)
(The curtain rises and we see a jail dormitory with three double bunks lined along the right wall, a shower stall in the left, back corner, three toilet/sink combos on the back wall between the shower and the bunks and a metal table with benches. A television is attached to the bars at the front of the cell. Two white prisoners watch television as two black prisoners play dominoes. Another black prisoner is in the space between the table and the toilets doing push-ups by the hundreds. Two jail guards arrive with Willy between them in handcuffs and shackles looking stunned.)
Jail Guard One: Kneel down, Barns.
Willy: (Kneels as if in prayer to have his shackles removed and then stands to have the handcuffs taken off.) Thanks.
Jail Guard Two: (Opens the cell door with big brass key.) In you go, Barns. You can tell your buddies all about your big adventure. Bet they don’t know you’re a badass child molester. Do they? (Turns and starts speaking to the other prisoners.) Y’ all make Barns show you his papers if you think I’m not telling the truth. He’s convicted by his own confession of child molestation.
Jail Guard One: You’re one sick asshole. Why’d you do that?
Jail Guard Two: (Locking the cell.) These perverts got it too damn easy if you ask me. These here boys are real convicts. He’ll pay now. You can believe that.
(The guards walk away and the five men turn hard stares on Willy.)
Bull: That true? Let’s see those papers.
Willy: (Ignores Bull and walks to his bunk.) It’s my business.
Bull: (Following Willy.) Don’t ignore me, Filly. I been watching you. Hear me? You ain’t right. Do you hear me?
Willy: (Totally dejected surrenders the papers.) Take ’em then.
Bull: (Walking and reading the papers.) Looky here. Filly got him ten years for the molestation of a child under sixteen. Guess it’s time Filly learned, hear me? What’s it like, hear me? To get his ass molested. Guess you don’t hear me.
Fatback: Hey, under sixteen ain’t shit. According how far under she was. Tell us what happened, Willy. You got to explain.
Willy: (Shakes his head not knowing what to say.) She was my girl and I didn’t molest her. It was her idea.
Bull: That’s bullshit. It wouldn’t be molestation it would just be statutory rape. I know the law. He’s a liar.
(Willy says nothing else knowing it’ll do no good.)
Fatback: If he won’t defend hisself it must be true. (Stands and joins Bull in front of Willy.) Guess you’ll have to pay.
Bull: (Slaps Willy.) Time to give it up. Hear me? I see you watching my African soup bone. Hear me? Bet that white ass will enjoy this. All you ho ass white boys are punks anyway.
(Hoodlum moves to join Bull and Fatback while the whites watching television shrink inside their skins to pretend to not know what is happening.)
Hoodlum: Might as well get me some shit pussy too. I got a long bid in front of me and child molesters don’t deserve no respect.
(They converge on Willy in silence and drag him to the back of the cell without a fight where they bend him over a bunk and pull down his pants.)
Bull: You white boys get them mirrors and watch the hall. If ya’ll let me get busted it’ll be you bent over next time.
(The television watchers scramble to do as they are told. Willy screams until no more sound will come and the only sound left in the cell is of hips smacking against his ass as they take turns.)
Bull: Filly, can’t you hold your mud, ho? (Throws a towel to Willy.) Get that mess cleaned up, hear me? And you better not shit on me next time, hear me? Or I’ll cut out your balls. Hear me? You better hear me. Hear me? Do you hear me?
(The curtain closes on the repeated hear me’s as Willy crawls around on the floor whimpering and trying to clean up the mess on the floor.)
(The curtain rises on a row of three cells. Each cell is 5’ x 9’ with bars across the front. There is only a bunk on the right wall of each cell and a toilet/sink combo on the left at the back of the cell. The light is on in the center cell with the two over the door and we see an older and wiser Willy laying on his bunk. Willy has not spoken since the day he was sentenced and raped.)
Prisoner Cell-1: (Standing in his cell door and screaming at nobody anyone else can see.) Good morning, lovely ladies. Angela! Come here and fuck my face like a dyke. Bust my cherry! Slap my butt! I’m a unisexual male and I’m not a homosexual. I’ve been checked and I don’t have HIV. Let me suck your female counterpart penis. I got a long tongue. I’ll suck the ovum out of a vagina hole. I’m not a homosexual. I’m a unisexual man.
Prisoner Cell-3: Shut up, punk. You dick gobbling, HIV packing, ho. Nobody wants to hear your shit. Shut the fuck up.
(Willy takes up his writing tablet and pen to begin writing his thoughts about his upcoming 21st birthday.)
Willy: (Voiceover as he writes.) This place is insane. Every day they scream. Most are crazy. If not when they get here they are before they leave. In less than a month I’ll turn twenty-one. Each birthday marks another year done and it gets harder to bear. My family has no idea with I’ve been through. How can I tell them I got raped and have HIV? Thank God I’ve never had to face Sam. I couldn’t stand that. Guess her dad got his way and she forgot me.
Prison Guard-1: Barns! You got mail, Sweety, and it smells good too. Where’s your I.D. so I can check the number since you won’t talk.
Willy: (Gets up and goes to the bars with his I.D. and returns to his bunk with an envelope; he recognizes the handwriting and lets out a deep groan.) Arrr, grrr! (He flings the envelope from him and sits down with his head hanging between his knees.)
(Willy stomps and groans and looks at the envelope laying on the cold concrete. The scent of Sam fills his cell and tears flood his eyes until finally he can’t bear not to open it.)
Sam: (Voiceover as Willy reads her card.) Happy Birthday! I’m so sorry I haven’t been able to write. Daddy wouldn’t let me. I’m 18 now and have my trust fund. There’s never been anyone but you. My silly Willy. I’ll be there on your birthday and I have a surprise for you too. I’ll spend all my life making this up to you. Love and kisses, yours always, Sam. (Willy sits crying as he tears his sheet in strips and braids it into a short stout rope. Then he turns out the light and we see no more until the lights come on in the cells for the guard to count and we see Willy kneeling slumped forward in the back of the cell with his rope around his neck and tied back to a vent grate too low to hang.)
Prison Guard-2: (Pulling walkie talkie and screaming as he keys the mic.) Emergency! Got a hanging in cell two. Need an entry team and medical.
(The team arrives quickly dressed in riot gear to enter the cell and cut Willy down. The nurse starts CPR and attempts to resuscitate Willy as he lays on the cold concrete floor.)
Prisoner Cell: Ladies, bust my cherry! Fuck my face like a dyke! Slap my buttcheeks! I’m a unisexual male, not a homosexual.
(They carry Willy away on a gurney with his head covered and officers go in to collect his few possessions to be examined later.)
Prison Guard-2: Guess ole Silence got a time cut.
(The curtain falls as the officers walk away carrying one tiny bag.)
(Curtain rises and we see tombstones at center stage. Sam enters stage right with a tow-headed little boy on her right hip and a rose in her left hand. She’s dressed all in black and stands with her head bowed beside the grave.)
Sam: (Laying the single rose at the head of his grave.) I brought your son to see you. It was going to be a surprise. I fought Daddy to keep him and I’ll never let him see his grandson for what he did. (Sam starts to cry and collapses to her knees by the grave with the little boy squirming around in her arms to face her.) He is named after you and I call him Wee Willy. Don’t worry, he’ll write your Great American Novel for you. I got all your notes from your mother. He’s got your brain and already reads better than I do. (Sam sobs.)
Wee Willy: (Grabs Sam’s face in his tiny hands and holds his nose against hers.) Don’t cry. You got me.
Sam: (Smiles and kisses his face as he giggles.) Yes, and I don’t think I could stand it without you. (Sam takes a tiny CD player and sets it on top of the gravestone before pushing play.) Let’s go. (Sam stands with Wee Willy on her hip and turns to walk away.)
Wee Willy: Free Bird!
Sam: Yes, it was your daddy’s favorite. He always wanted to be free. Now he is. Forever.
(The curtain falls as “Free Bird” plays and Sam walks away.)