Hit the Roof

a One Act Play, Copyright © 1999, Kellis

kellis@dhp.com

Stories at http://www.dhp.com/~kellis

 

Players

††††††††† Jerry Lamkin:College student

††††††††† Trudy Merkel:College student

††††††††† Lilly Fentriss:Young, divorced woman

††††††††† David Callen:Adulterer

††††††††† Hilary Lester:Adulterous wife

††††††††† Mark Lester:Husband

 

Time

††††††††† Present

 

Place

††††††††† High-rise rooftop

 

Scene

††††††††† The stage is set to represent a flat rooftop, surrounded by railings resembling those on a ship so that the audience can see through stage front.At center stage rear is a small house with two doors, labeled Stairs and Elevator / Maintenance.In center stage is a trap door that can be easily raised, large enough to pass players two at the time.The door and its frame have the appearance of rusted metal.When raised a label can be seen:Fitters Access.The hinges are on the side facing stage front.On the side facing stage rear is a latching lever that can be pulled up from the top or pushed up from beneath.

†††††††††††††††† Two sheet-metal air vents are placed asymetrically at stage left and right.The one at stage right is sturdy enough to hold two seated players.The one on stage left opens to the rear andis large enough to conceal a crouched player.It is located adjacent to a side drop that covers a player entering the vent from offstage.

†††††††††††††††† The stage floor is laid to depict a gravel surface.Back and side drops are sky blue with white clouds.This is the tallest structure in the neighborhood.

†††††††††††††††† It is a warm, sunny day.When the curtain rises the set is empty of players.

 

††††††††† [The Stairs door slams open with a clang.Jerry and Trudy enter through it.They are college students on holiday, dressed for summer in typical shorts and sleeveless shirts.]

 

Trudy [glaring]:Do you have to get everyoneís attention?

 

Jerry [fiddling with door handle]:Somebody ought to fix the springs on this thing!But look!†††† [gestures right and left after closing the door]Whoís to notice?

 

Trudy [craning her neck all around]:Oh, wow!It seems so wide open!

 

Jerry [proudly]:This is the highest building for miles.No one can see us but the birds.

 

Trudy:How about airplanes?

 

Jerry:Well, I guess they could see us.[Smiles]But we can hear them and put our clothes back on!

 

Trudy [giggles]:Oh?Did we come up here for a sun bath, Jerry?

 

Jerry [grins and puts an arm around her]:We can do a little of that, too.You said you wanted privacy, Trudy, and it sure beats the student union.This is private!

 

Trudy:I hope so.I love to be alone with you.

 

††††††††† [She snuggles to him and they kiss.His hands go under her shirt.She lifts her arms and lets him pull it over her head.She is without underclothing.He pushes her away but holds to her shoulders, staring.]

 

Jerry:Oh, my god!

 

Trudy [frowning]:Donít you like me?

 

Jerry:I never saw any ó I never saw you in the bright light before.God, Trudy, your tits are beautiful!

 

Trudy [frown replaced by smile]:Thatís better!I want to see you, too.

 

††††††††† [They throw off all their clothing except footwear and embrace nude.

†††††††††††††††† Note to Director:if the male player cannot react properly and the audience is mostly male, let him face stage rear.If the audience is mostly female, let Trudy apply direct stimulation, then replace him before the next performance.]

 

Trudy [looking around to stage right]:Let me sit on that vent.And bring my shirt, will you?

 

††††††††† [Trudy spreads her shirt on the vent and sits upon it.Jerry slips between her legs, which rise to his shoulders, and fucks her.Very soon his pace becomes rapid.]

 

Trudy [complaining]:Donít come yet!

 

Jerry:I canít help it.

 

††††††††† [Jerry groans loudly and arches his back, obviously in orgasm, before sagging sideways on the vent.

†††††††††††††††† Note to Director:if the male player hasnít got it up by this time, maybe you should replace Trudy.]

 

Trudy [aggravated]:Dammit, Jerry, why do you always have to be so fast?

 

Jerry [defensive]:You are so beautiful!And the sun makes you so hot!

 

Trudy [truculently]:Well, youíre gonna have to fix it.

 

Jerry:You mean Ö

 

Trudy:Lick me.

 

Jerry:But youíre full of Ö

 

Trudy:You put it there!

 

Jerry [sighing]:Okay, okay.I guess itís only fair.[He grins suddenly.]Pearl diving in the sunlight!Thatís a switch.

 

Trudy:Well, come find it, stud!

 

††††††††† [Jerry squats.Trudyís legs fall over his shoulders and his tongue goes to work.But Trudy twists from side to side, obviously uncomfortable on the vent.]

 

Trudy [frowning]:This wonít work.

 

Jerry [raising his head]:It wonít?

 

Trudy:Darn it, Jerry!This roof may be private but thereís just no way to be comfortable.And you shouldíve brought Johnny like you said you would.

 

Jerry:Who needs Johnny?

 

Trudy:I do!Unless I can get you going again.

 

Jerry [jumping up]:Hey, I know where we can get more comfortable!I just remembered it.

 

Trudy [shaking her head]:Everyoneís home in both our apartments.[She brightens.]You mean Johnnyís place?

 

Jerry:No!Here on the roof!Come on.

 

††††††††† [They stroll to the trapdoor in the middle of the roof.]

 

Jerry:Think of a big air duct with thick insulation.Thatíd be comfortable, I bet!

 

Trudy:What air duct?

 

Jerry:In here.Give me a hand.

 

††††††††† [Together they pull on the lever and the door comes up.Trudy peers into the opening with a frown.]

 

Trudy:Air duct?All I see is a staircase.

 

Jerry:Thereís a big room at the bottom, full of ducts and motors, where no one ever comes.

 

Trudy:How do you know?There must be another door.

 

Jerry:A big steel door in the top floor hall, but itís locked tight.Come on.Wish Iíd thought of this in the first place!

 

Trudy:Is it dark?

 

Jerry:Almost.You can hide easily.[grins invitingly]†† We can play hide and seek.

 

Trudy:Youíve played hide and seek in there before, havenít you?Who with?

 

Jerry:Oh, I donít know.Someone last summer.

 

Trudy:It was Marie Toland, wasnít it!

 

Jerry [slips arm around her]:I donít remember.Come on.Youíll love it!

 

Trudy:What about our clothes?

 

Jerry:Leave them.No wind today.

 

Trudy:Can we get back out?

 

Jerry:You push this lever from the inside and the door opens right up.

 

Trudy [beginning to grin]:It might be fun!

 

Jerry:You know it!Letís go.

 

††††††††† [They descend into the opening.The trap door closes gently behind them.]

 

††††††††† [The Stairs door opens and Lilly steps out onto the roof.She is a well stacked, pretty young woman wearing clogs and a large terrycloth bathrobe.She is carrying a small bag of the ďovernightĒ type with a blanket folded over her arm.She closes the door gently, verifies the roof to be unoccupied, momentarily inspects some of the discarded clothing then proceeds directly to the trap door and spreads the blanket over it evenly.She shrugs out of her robe, laying it aside.She was nude beneath it.She takes a lotion bottle from her bag and slathers it liberally on her body.

†††††††††††††††† Note to Director:No actual lotion need be used.The purpose of the ostensible application is of course to achieve maximum display for the male patrons.The player should keep this in mind.

†††††††††††††††† Finally Lilly lies down on blanket plus robe, takes a book from her bag and begins to read.]

 

††††††††† [Bang!The Stairs door slams open even harder than Jerry had thrown it.David dashes through it.He is handsome, well built and completely nude, gasping for breath.He hardly glances at Lilly, who rises up in shock. He slams the door closed and fiddles with the lock briefly before turning toward her.

†††††††††††††††† Lilly stands up and hastily dons her robe.]

 

David [in anguish]:Why doesnít it lock?Youíd expect it to lock!

 

Lilly:I think itís meant to be a fire avenue ó

 

††††††††† [But David runs across the roof, wincing and dancing with bare feet on the gravel, looking over each side.At stage front he pauses on the rail long enough ostensibly to estimate the jump to a suspended fire escape.

†††††††††††††††† Note to Director:At stage front he is actually pausing for female patrons to appreciate his equipment, but the posing should be tasteful.Or perhaps tasty.

†††††††††††††††† He finally stops in front of Lilly.

 

David [gasping for breath]:Stupid ass builders!That fire escape is Ö too far down.Is there Ö any other way Ö off this roof?

 

Lilly [cocking head]:Not unless you can fly.

 

David:Fly?[laughs]Do you think I have a date with a stork?

 

Lilly:Maybe youíre superman from an occupied phone booth.

 

David:Superman?Huh!Iím sorry to disappoint you.

 

Lilly:Me, too.But a girl can always hope.

 

David [grinning]:Well, if I could fly, Iíd take you with me.

 

Lilly:Would you?Thatís the best offer Iíve had all month.

 

David [despair replacing grin]:Only too obviously no place to hide!Why does it have to be the tallest building in the neighborhood?

 

Lilly [primly]:I wouldnít sunbathe here otherwise.Is someone chasing you?

 

David [in resignation]:A man with a pistol and every reason to use it.[Sighs]Ah, well.If youíre to be my last vision, at least itís worth it.

 

Lilly [frowning thoughtfully]:Youíre wrong.

 

David:Oh, no!That glimpse I had of youó

 

Lilly [interrupting]:About no place to hide.

 

David:Donít you understand?I donít dare go back inside.

 

Lilly [reaching down and snatching the blanket aside]:Look!

 

David [cocks head to read]:ďFitters Access.ĒWhat is it?

 

Lilly [touching handle with toe]:Can you lift that?

 

††††††††† [David raises the door and stares into the opening.]

 

David:Whatís down there?

 

Lilly:A room full of ducts and motors.

 

David [suspiciously]:I suppose itís a coincidence your blanket exactly covered this!

 

Lilly [raising chin]:You try lying on gravel!

 

David:Well, compared to jumping Ö[Smiles]And this way I get to see you again.

 

††††††††† [David vanishes into the opening and lowers the door behind him.Lilly again spreads her blanket over the trapdoor, thinks a moment, removes her robe and reclines, taking up the book.

†††††††††††††††† Almost immediately the Stairs door opens partly and Hilary appears.A voluptuous thirty-ish, she is totally nude, hair disheveled.She stares at Lilly.]

 

Hilary:Oh, god!Help me, please.Youíve got to help me!

 

Mark [masculine voice offstage, shouting distantly]:Aha!I see where you went!

 

Hilary [eyes wild, closing the door silently]:Heís got his pistol.Heíll kill me if he catches me!

 

Lilly [jumping up, removing blanket and lifting the trapdoor]:In here!Quickly!

 

††††††††† [Hilary dashes into the opening.Lilly slams it down, spreads her blanket hurriedly and resumes her sun-bathing pose.

†††††††††††††††† The Stairs door slams open and Mark appears, holding a pistol before him.He is a well-built man in slacks and knit shirt.He glares at Lilly, at first thrusting the pistol toward her then turning it away.]

 

Mark [obviously surprised]:Whoíre you?

 

Lilly [sitting up and throwing her robe around herself]:If you shoot me youíll never find out.

 

Mark [stuffing the pistol into his belt]:But youíre not her!

 

Lilly [haughtily]:Of course not.

 

††††††††† [Mark comes out onto the roof and cursorily looks around.]

 

Mark:Where is she?I know she came up here!

 

Lilly [gestures at her book]:Iíve been reading.Who is it you mean to shoot?

 

Mark:Shoot?[He chuckles.]I donít mean to shoot anyone.[He walks up to Lilly and hands her the pistol.]Take a look.

 

Lilly:Whatís this, a replica?Itís not much of a pistol.

 

Mark:Itís enough when theyíre guilty.

 

Lilly:Guilty of what?

 

Mark [grinning]:Would you believe impatience?I walked in the apartment just now to see if Hilary had decided to give me a divorce.Guess who was on the living room couch with her legs wrapped around some stranger.

 

Lilly [considering]:And you thought that called for a pistol?

 

Mark [grinning wider]:For a pistol replica!

 

Lilly [tilting chin]:You still like to make people jump, donít you, Mark Lester?

 

Mark [taken aback]:Huh?Weíve met?[staring closely]My god, is it you, Lilly?

 

Lilly:So you do still remember me!

 

Mark:Not likely Iíd ever forget you!Wow!I canít believe it.

 

Lilly:Believe what?

 

Mark [seriously]:I saw you before you put your robe on.The girl has turned into a beautiful woman.

 

Lilly [smiles]:Thank you.

 

Mark:You always had a pretty face, but now ÖWhat I saw was stunning, Lilly.

 

Lilly [shakes head]:Still collecting honey from all the flowers, are you, Mark?

 

Mark [taking deep breath]:Still trying.Why did you drop me like a hot potato?

 

Lilly:You really donít know?

 

Mark:You never would tell me!

 

Lilly:All right.Because of Sweet Hollow.

 

Mark:Huh?Is that a place?

 

Lilly:No.Itís a perfume.

 

Mark:A perfume?

 

Lilly:Sickly sweet.Only one girl in the whole school used it.When I smelled it on you, I knew you were lying to me, too.

 

Mark:Lying to you!I never lied to you in my life.

 

Lilly:You went down on Sally Flike.She told me all about it.

 

Mark:She said that?

 

Lilly:And she knew about the birthmark on your balls.

 

Mark:Oh, yes, she knew about that!When we were kids, we swam nude in her old manís pool.But I swear I never did anything to her.

 

Lilly:I tell you, I smelled her perfume on you the night you came back from the all-stars game.

 

Mark:Our last night!Hey, I remember that!Why didnít you tell me then?

 

Lilly:What difference would it have made?

 

Mark:I couldíve told you the reason!She sprayed me with her perfume bottle at the game.Said it would mark me as her territory.I shoved her down for it and got her jeans muddy.That was ten years ago.My god, Lilly![takes a deep breath, staring]You dropped me for that?

 

Lilly [looking into his eyes]:Itís like yesterday.Mark, are you telling the truth?

 

Mark [earnestly]:I say again, Lilly:I never lied to you and Iím not starting now.

 

††††††††† [Lillyís arms rise toward him.He sinks beside her and they embrace.]

 

Lilly:What a fool Iíve been!Iíve been married and divorced, too.We have so much to catch up on!

 

Mark:We can start right here.

 

††††††††† [Mark strips off his clothing as Lilly spreads out her robe.Kissing and fondling, they lie together on the robe and blanket, parallel to stage front with heads toward stage right.Shortly he takes her in the missionary position.]

 

††††††††† [After enough time for David to discover that the trapdoor is weighted down, he creeps out of the vent on stage left, looks around and ducks when he spies the loving couple.He is streaked with dust and dirt.Deciding that the couple is oblivious to the world, he turns and helps Hilary climb out of the vent behind him.She is likewise streaked and dirty.]

 

Hilary [craning her neck]:Thatís Mark!

 

David:Shhh!I see his pistol.

 

††††††††† [David, wincing from walking on gravel, slinks to the trapdoor and snatches up the fallen pistol.He examines it and assumes an expression of disgust.]

 

David [gesturing to Hilary and speaking in a normal voice]:Come and take a look at this.

 

††††††††† [Hilary, also wincing from the gravel, scampers to join him as Mark rises off Lilly, helping her also to her feet.]

 

David [handing Hilary the pistol]:This is what weíve been running from.

 

††††††††† [Hilary examines it and glares at the now standing Mark.]

 

Hilary:You bastard!

 

Mark [grins at her]:We seem to be birds of a feather.

 

David [indicating Lilly]:Yeah.All of us!

 

Lilly [chuckling]:But not the same color.What happened?Couldnít you get the door open?

 

David:And now I know why!

 

Mark:I think you all three know something I donít.Where were they hiding, Lilly?

 

††††††††† [Lilly steps off the blanket and pulls it away, exposing the trapdoor.She laughs at Markís exclamation of surprise.]

 

Lilly [blowing Mark a kiss]:I didnít want you to shoot anyone.

 

Mark:We laid on the door and you had to come out through the vents?[bursts out laughing, but sobers suddenly]Iím sorry, folks.This whole thing was unnecessary.I came over this afternoon to see if Hilary would give me a divorce.I think I have my answer to that.

†††††††††††††††† Can I make a suggestion?Letís all go down to ó I started to say, ďmy place,Ē but this afternoon itís still mine and Hilaryís.You two can shower and we can all have a drink to celebrate our new arrangement.What do you say?

 

David [winking surreptitiously at Lilly]:Very civilized of you, sir!

 

††††††††† [Amid expressions of agreement, Lilly gathers up her equipment, Mark his clothing, and all four depart through the Stairs door, closing it behind them.]

 

††††††††† [The trapdoor rises once again.Jerry leads Trudy out onto the roof and closes the trap.After yawning and stretching, they embrace while turned slightly toward stage front.]

 

Trudy [grasping Jerryís penis]:I like this thing where I can keep an eye on it.

 

Jerry [cupping her breast]:I know what you mean.

 

Trudy:That was fun, Jerry, but it was too dark and those motors were too noisy.I couldnít hear you come.

 

Jerry [grinning]:Well, I could hear you!

 

Trudy [laughs and begins to pick up clothing]:Someone moved our clothes.

 

Jerry:The wind.

 

Trudy:Are you sure no one ever comes up here?

 

Jerry [dressing]:You havenít seen anyone, have you?

 

††††††††† [They dress quickly and pause at the Stairs door.]

 

Trudy:Give me a kiss in case somebodyís on the elevator.

 

Jerry [after kissing her]:Hit the roof with me again tomorrow?

 

Trudy [looking around at the abandoned roof]:I guess it does beat the student union.

 

††††††††† [Curtain.]