Generic Radio Workshop Script Library (BACK)

Series: Arch Oboler's Plays
Show: Another World (aka Alter Ego)
Date: Jul 29 1939

CAST:

The Leads:
JOAN
BOB, her fiancé
CARMEN, her evil alter ego
ERIC, her lawyer

The Bits:
VOICE
FATHER
LAWYER
DOCTOR
JUDGE
JURY FOREMAN
WARDEN
CHAPLAIN
ANNOUNCER
COURTROOM VOICES

A version of this play was scheduled to air on "Lights Out" in 1936.

MUSIC:

THEME

ANNOUNCER:

Arch Oboler's Plays ...

MUSIC:

THEME

ANNOUNCER:

A story in the night ...

MUSIC:

THEME ... THEN OUT

OBOLER:

Ladies and gentlemen, this is Arch Oboler. Tonight, I fully expected to bring you the story of another world, a play full of roaring rocket ships speeding through space, bringing the people of our earth to new adventures on other planets. And then I began to think, Why go out into interstellar space for a story of another world, when here, on this earth, within ourselves, there are other worlds -- the other beings we might have been? Here, then, is the story of another world -- within our own.

MUSIC:

FOR A SOMBER INTRO ... THEN IN BG, OUT AT [X]

VOICE:

In a cell of the death block of a Southern penitentiary sits a woman, weeping. It is a cold, dismal, dreary night. [X] Outside, a chilling rain beats endlessly against the small barred window. Inside, alone, a young girl kneels beside her prison cot, talking softly in the dark.

JOAN:

(NARRATES) I couldn't help it, mother. I couldn't help it; it wasn't my fault. Oh, please believe me, mother. There's no one else I can turn to now. You'll understand, won't you? If you'd only been alive, you could have helped me -- and now, somehow, I think you're close, listening to me, and I want to explain to you, tell you everything that happened. You remember the boy next door, Bob? He was only ten when you died. Poor Bob, he was so happy that night. Father had just announced our engagement. We'd had a big crowd at the house. Everybody was so happy and gay. And afterward -- when everyone had gone -- father went inside the house and Bob and I were alone in the garden. Oh, it was so warm and lovely.

SOUND:

CRICKET, FROG, WHIPPOORWILL, IN BG

BOB:

(SOFTLY) Happy?

JOAN:

(SNUGGLES, AFFIRMATIVE) Uh-huh.

BOB:

So am I. It's going to be wonderful, Joan. Just us two.

JOAN:

(SAVORS) Just us two!

BOB:

I could hardly wait for the rest of them to go. Blame me?

JOAN:

I love you, Bob.

BOB:

(LIGHTLY) I can stand it, honey. (SUDDEN THOUGHT) Why were you so scared when your dad got up to make the announcement?

JOAN:

I don't know. I just-- Oh, let's forget it.

BOB:

(TEASING) The blushing bride?

JOAN:

(A BIT NERVOUS) No, really, Bob. It wasn't anything.

BOB:

Come on, now. Tell Robert.

JOAN:

Please, Bob.

BOB:

Darling, that's love. I want to know everything you think and everything you feel, even before you--

JOAN:

No, you mustn't! Don't ever ask me things, Bob! Please -- you've got to promise!

BOB:

(PUZZLED) Joan, what's the matter?

JOAN:

(NERVOUS) Nothing, nothing. Only-- Well, it isn't good for anyone to know so much about anyone else.

BOB:

(AMUSED) Oh, go on; I know all about you already! (TENDER) You're the loveliest, sweetest girl a man ever loved.

JOAN:

Keep your arms around me, Bob -- like this -- always. Everything's all right when you do that.

BOB:

(GRINS) Is it? (HAPPY SIGH) Gee, the whole world seems different tonight. I mean, there's a kinda singing in the air. Hear those sounds, honey?

JOAN:

(PAUSE) Bob--?

BOB:

Yes, Joan?

JOAN:

Bob, do you ever--? I mean-- Well, does it ever happen that--?

BOB:

What are you trying to ask me, honey?

JOAN:

Oh, I don't know.

BOB:

Come on, now, what's on your mind?

JOAN:

Well-- Do you ever hear things?

BOB:

Sure, that's what I was telling you. Listen to them singing. Crickets and the frogs--

JOAN:

But I don't mean that, Bob. I don't mean from the outside. I mean -- do you ever hear things from the inside?

BOB:

From the inside? Well, now, I--

JOAN:

Oh, if I could only explain it. It's not like a voice and - and yet maybe it is a voice. Only there isn't any sound. It's - like - like something that wants to be born and - and--

BOB:

(CHUCKLES) Oh, darling, what are you talking about?

JOAN:

I - I don't know, I-- Somehow, all evening, I've - I've had a feeling inside of me as if--

BOB:

As if what, sweet?

JOAN:

As if I'm-- I-- (QUICKLY) Oh, it's nothing at all, I guess. I - I've just been running around too much, that's all.

BOB:

I'll say you have. So strangely nervous; I've noticed it in the last few days. What is it, Joan? Can't you tell me?

JOAN:

Well, I-- I'm not sure. I-- Oh, please, Bob, let's not talk about it any more. Hold me close -- it's getting so chilly.

BOB:

I'll get your coat.

JOAN:

(QUICKLY) No, Bob, I don't--

BOB:

Won't take a moment, Joan. (FADES) I'll be right back.

JOAN:

Hurry, dearest.

MUSIC:

OMINOUS "CARMEN" STRAIN, LOW AND WEIRD ... CONTINUES IN BG

CARMEN:

(INSISTENT) Joan-n-n-n--

JOAN: (IN SURPRISE) What?

CARMEN:

Joan-n-n-n--

JOAN:

(STARTLED) Who - who is it? Who's calling my name?

CARMEN:

Joan-n-n-n--

JOAN:

Where - where are you? I hear you. You're close by, but I can't see you. Please -- where are you? You're frightening me.

CARMEN:

(PLEASED) I frighten you.

JOAN:

(INHALES)

CARMEN:

So! Now you know where I am, don't you?

JOAN:

I-- No! It can't be true.

CARMEN:

It is true. I speak from within you.

JOAN:

No. No, it's someone speaking from the outside. Someone trying to frighten me. I won't listen to you.

CARMEN:

(IN COLD AMUSEMENT) Yes -- cover your ears.

JOAN:

(MOANS)

CARMEN:

Yes -- you still hear me.

JOAN:

(DAZED) In my head.

CARMEN:

Yes -- in your head.

JOAN:

(TEARFUL) Madness!

CARMEN:

(SHARP) You little fool! It's reality! Stand where you are and listen -- you must!

JOAN:

(DISBELIEF) In my head.

CARMEN:

(ANNOYED) Yes, yes, in your head! That's where I am, and that's where I've been all these years.

JOAN:

The two of us--?

CARMEN:

Yes, yes, the two of us, living in the same body! (LAUGHS HARSHLY) Your white body! You've known I was there, haven't you?

JOAN:

(ALMOST MOANS) No, no! (CONTINUES TO SOB, SHUDDER AND MOAN, IN BG, TILL SCENE ENDS)

CARMEN:

Oh, yes, you have! I've fought with you all your life -- you've wanted to do this, I've wanted to do that! You've felt me struggling within you! But you haven't dared admit that I was there! (EXULTANT) But now, at last, I've found words! Only you can hear them in your own mind, but they're words, words, and they'll give me the world that belongs to me! (POINTED) Listen, you -- I've waited a long time for this! A long time! You've got to let me live!

JOAN:

(CONFUSED) Live?

CARMEN:

Yes, live. Live! Speak words that others can hear! Do what I want with this body I live in!

JOAN:

(HORRIFIED) Oh, no!

CARMEN:

I've wanted to live so much! I've fought in the darkness so long! At last, I've fought my way through so that you can hear me - but now I want more -- much more! I want to have all of the body, you hear me? All of it! You've had it so long -- it's my turn now! Listen -- you've got to give it up!

JOAN:

Give it up?

CARMEN:

Yes, yes, you simple fool! Stop repeating my words! I want you to give it up -- your body, your mind -- to me! In the end, you'll have to, anyway! I've grown stronger, month after month, year after year! I've always been in you -- without words -- but now you hear me! You've got to give up your body, your mind -- to me! It'll be easy. Just give up -- give up struggling against me!

JOAN:

(MOANS) Oh, no!

CARMEN:

I will win! I will! I've waited so long -- until you were tired -- that simple little mind of yours tired. And now I won't go back into the darkness. I'll thrust you out. I'll live! I'll live!

BOB:

(OFF) Joan? Joan, honey?

MUSIC:

OMINOUS "CARMEN" THEME ABRUPTLY OUT ... PASTORAL THEME IN

JOAN:

(SOBS) Bob -- Bob! Oh, Bob!

BOB:

(STARTLED, CLOSER) What is it, honey? What's happened?

JOAN:

(HYSTERICAL) Hold me closer, Bob! Closer! Closer! (SOBS)

MUSIC:

FADES OUT

JOAN:

(NARRATES) And that's the way it was, mother -- the first time. That was the first time I heard her. She was in my mind, mother -- right in my mind! I could hear every word. It was madness and yet it wasn't madness; it was really happening. Oh, the terrible days that followed, mother. That horrible woman inside of me -- Carmen she called herself -- fighting, fighting, fighting me every moment, wanting me to-- Well, I didn't quite understand. To - to stop resisting her, I guess, so that she could come alive in me and do what she pleased with me. At first, I was too frightened even to struggle. She made me think such horrible things, mother. Father and Bob couldn't understand what was happening to me. (FADES) They used to spend long hours together talking over what had happened to me.

SOUND:

TRANSITIONAL PAUSE

BOB:

Mr. Andrews, I tell you Joan has changed!

FATHER:

Now, my boy, calm yourself. Everything'll come out all right.

BOB:

We've got to do something, sir! Why should someone as sweet and gentle as Joan suddenly turn into--? I tell you I can't stand it!

FATHER:

But, my boy, what can we do? I - I don't dare call in a physician. He might - he might say--

BOB:

Yes, yes, I know what you're thinking! But she's not insane, sir! Don't even think of it! Joan is not insane! (FADES) It's a strange sickness that'll pass. It's got to pass!

SOUND:

TRANSITIONAL PAUSE

JOAN:

(NARRATES) Yes, mother, I used to hear them through my bedroom door. Long hours of talking whether I was sane or not. And all the time that horrible woman inside of me, threatening me, telling me that they'd put me away in an asylum unless I listened to her. (FADES) Taunting me.

MUSIC:

"CARMEN" THEME ... CONTINUES IN BG

JOAN:

(SOBBING, CONTINUES IN BG)

CARMEN:

(INSISTENT) Yes! I tell you, that's what they're doing! Talking about you out there! Saying you're insane -- you hear me? Insane!

JOAN:

(MOANS) No, no, stop!

CARMEN:

Insane -- that's what they're saying -- insane!

JOAN:

I'll go to them! I'll tell them the truth!

CARMEN:

(SCORNFUL) The truth! You little fool! Who'll believe you?! A mind within a mind. Who'll believe you?, I say. They'll put you in an asylum for life! You hear me? An asylum for life! You know what that means?

JOAN:

(WEEPS)

CARMEN:

Yes, yes, weep, you little white-faced fool! But that won't help you! In an asylum, that's where they'll put you. Walls around you all your life. Better to be dead, I tell you. Better to be dead!

JOAN:

Yes, yes! I'd rather be dead than that!

CARMEN:

(EAGER) Then listen to me! Let me take over. Let me live. It'll be so easy. Just don't fight me any more. You will do that, won't you?

JOAN:

No! Never! Never! You evil thing, you! I'll never let you.

CARMEN:

You will. You will. You will.

MUSIC:

FADES OUT

JOAN:

(NARRATES) That's what I told her, mother. I'd never let her have me to do what she wanted -- never! But she kept after me, mother. Day after day. Oh, I couldn't stand it any longer! And in father's eyes I began to see the thought of - of insanity. And I was so afraid. So very afraid. And she kept after me -- hour after hour -- taunting, threatening.

MUSIC:

"CARMEN" THEME ... CONTINUES IN BG

JOAN:

(SOBBING, CONTINUES IN BG)

CARMEN:

(INSISTENT) Listen, you little fool! Listen to me, I say! You must listen! Oh, what's the use of burying your head in the pillow? You know you'll hear me no matter what you do! You'll always hear me. I'm in you. In you forever, you hear me? Forever!

JOAN:

Oh, why don't you leave me alone?

CARMEN:

You fool, I can't leave you alone. I can't! I want to live. I've wanted life so long. You've got to let me have it!

JOAN:

(AN IDEA) I'll go to Dr. Wien! I'll tell him everything! He's my friend. He'll help me.

CARMEN:

No, no. No, doctor, you little fool! No doctor! They'll put you in an asylum, I tell you! An insane asylum!

JOAN:

(DESPERATE) I don't care! Anything -- anything to stop this madness -- you!

CARMEN:

No. No, you can't go to anyone. (AN IDEA) A bargain! That's what I'll make with you -- a bargain!

JOAN:

Bargain?

CARMEN:

Yes, that's what I'll make with you -- a bargain. I'll give you your freedom. Freedom, do you understand? I'll never talk again. You won't even know I'm here inside of you. You'll be just as you used to be. You'll be alone. If you go away!

JOAN:

If I thought you meant it. If I could only trust you.

CARMEN:

You can. You can! Leave this house. Go away. Far away. To a new town. Start a new life. I'll leave you alone if you do. Only go away. You've got to go away.

MUSIC:

FADES OUT

JOAN:

(RELIEVED) A new life! Yes! Yes, a new life! I'll go away! I'll go away!

SOUND:

TRANSITIONAL PAUSE

JOAN:

(NARRATES) And so I took the money you left me, mother. I took it and I ran away.

SOUND:

TRAIN NOISE ... CHANGING TO CITY STREET NOISE IN AGREEMENT WITH FOLLOWING ... THEN OUT AT [X]

JOAN:

(NARRATES) Train after train -- I would get off one train and on the other -- I didn't care where I was going -- I just wanted to get away, far away - train after train -- until at last my money was gone and I found myself in this city -- unknown, a thousand miles from home [X] -- but happy, because I thought I was free from her!

Yes, mother, I was free from her. All the time on the train not a word did she speak in my head -- not a single thought. And then for a week in the city she was gone, mother -- completely gone, and I was, oh, so happy! With the few dollars I had left I got a room, and then I got a job, and I thought, "Oh dear God, at last I'm free again!" (FLAT) And then - then I began to get lonesome. Lonesome for Bob. Maybe wanting him so much was what finally brought him to me. Three weeks later, he finally found me.

BOB:

I don't care why you did it, Joan. It doesn't matter now. Just so I've found you.

JOAN:

I've been so terribly lonesome, Bob.

BOB:

We're going home.

JOAN:

(LOW) I can't, Bob.

BOB:

Why not?

JOAN:

I can't, that's all. You've - you've got to believe me.

BOB:

But I don't know what to believe any more! You keep on saying that you still love me--

JOAN:

I do! I do love you, Bob! I'll always love you.

BOB:

Why don't you want to go back with me, then?

JOAN:

Because-- (ANGUISHED) Because I've got reasons, I tell you! You wouldn't understand!

BOB:

But how can I? You won't give me a chance. You're not even giving yourself a chance. You don't belong in a place like this! You belong with us -- with your dad and with me. We love you, Joan. We want to take care of you. If it's something you've done--

JOAN:

No, nothing like that.

BOB:

Well, it doesn't matter. Whatever it is, we'll make it right. If you'll just come back with me.

JOAN:

Don't ask me, Bob! Don't ask me any more!

BOB:

I love you, Joan!

JOAN:

Then do what I say! Please -- if you really love me, go away and leave me here! Go back -- go back alone! Please -- I'm begging you, Bob! Because I love you! (STARTS TO CRY) Because I love you. (SOBS)

BOB:

You love me, and I love you. (SUDDENLY FIRM) I think we've had enough of this nonsense! You listen to me, Joan! I'm going downstairs, I'm gonna pay your bill, then we're gonna pack your things and we're gonna catch the next train! (FADES) We'll have no argument about it, either!

JOAN:

(TRIES TO CALL HIM BACK) No, Bob -- Bob!

SOUND:

DOOR SLAMS SHUT, OFF

MUSIC:

"CARMEN" THEME ... CONTINUES IN BG

CARMEN:

(INSISTENT) Joan-n-n--

JOAN:

(FRIGHTENED) No--

CARMEN:

Joan-n-n--

JOAN:

(TERRIFIED) You've come back!

CARMEN:

(MIRTHLESS LAUGH) Yes, I've come back!

JOAN:

But you said you wouldn't! You promised me! You said you wouldn't come back, if I went away! You lied! You lied to me!

CARMEN:

You lied to yourself. You knew I'd go wherever you went.

JOAN:

You've cheated me.

CARMEN:

As you've cheated me through all these years - but I'll live now! I'll take your place - with Bob!

JOAN:

(STUNNED) But you can't do that! You don't love him!

CARMEN:

(COARSE LAUGH) How do you know? Why, you little white-faced Puritan, what do you know about love? What do you know about life? What will you ever know, unless I teach you? Don't worry, though. You'll learn in time. I'll take over this slim white body of yours. I'll make you burn and freeze and sing and cry! I'll make you crawl in the mud and dance in the skies! (TRIUMPHANT) I'll teach you! I'll teach you, Joan!

JOAN:

I won't let you! I won't! I'll tell them about you!

CARMEN:

They'll say you're mad!

JOAN:

(HYSTERICAL) I don't care -- I don't care, I tell you! I'll drag you out! I'll let them see you! They'll help me destroy you!

CARMEN:

I'll destroy you first! I'll destroy you, Joan.

JOAN:

(HYSTERICAL, CALLS) Bob! Bob!

MUSIC:

OUT

BOB:

(COMING IN) We're all set, honey. I've paid the bill and--

JOAN:

(BREATHLESS) Bob, listen, I've changed my mind. I want to--

BOB:

(LIGHTLY) Don't say it, darling. I know. You want to go home. You've straightened things out in that funny little head of yours.

JOAN:

Wait, Bob--

BOB:

Not a chance, lady. We're not waiting for anything now. Come on, let's get to work on these bags.

SOUND:

SUITCASE SNAPS OPEN

MUSIC:

"CARMEN" THEME ... CONTINUES IN BG

CARMEN:

I warned you, Joan.

JOAN:

Bob, listen to me!

BOB:

There's no time now, honey. That train leaves in forty minutes.

CARMEN:

I said I'd destroy you, Joan!

BOB:

(LIGHTLY) You know, for the first time in my life, I enjoy packing. That might never happen again.

CARMEN:

(INSISTENT) Kill him!

JOAN:

(HORRIFIED) No!

BOB:

What did you say?

JOAN:

(BREATHLESS) Nothing. Nothing.

CARMEN:

Kill him!

BOB:

Don't look so scared. Pass me those things on the dresser.

CARMEN:

Kill him!

SOUND:

BOB RAMBLES ON, FADING SLIGHTLY AT [X] WHEN CARMEN'S VOICE BEGINS TO OVERLAP

BOB:

You know, I just figured out why I never enjoyed packing before. [X] I never tried it when I was happy. Not this happy, anyway, Joan. Honey, I've got a hunch that everything's going to be all right from now on. We'll just forget these last few months. I guess everybody has some ups and downs like this. Only we're going to be so darned happy. We'll always be--

CARMEN:

(OVERLAPS WITH ABOVE, SLOW, INSINUATING) The scissors. On the dresser, Joan. Pick them up. They're sharp. Hold them tight, Joan, tight. He's not looking. Raise your arm. Higher. Higher. Now -- strike!

BOB:

(BREAKS OFF AS HE STABBED, THEN GRUNTS)

JOAN:

(SCREAMS)

MUSIC:

AN ACCENT, THEN OUT

JOAN:

(NARRATES) Yes, mother. Dead. Dead. But I didn't do it, you understand. I didn't do it! It was she! She, pounding in my mind. She made my fingers hold the scissors. She made me-- Oh, mother, mother, you do understand, don't you? (WEEPS FOR A FEW SECONDS) She wanted to destroy me, and that's the way she did it. And then the trial. What could I say? What could I do? Who would believe me? She - she didn't come back any more. She was satisfied with what she did. She was waiting. Oh, that trial, mother.

SOUND:

COURTROOM NOISE ... CONTINUES IN BG

JOAN:

(NARRATES) Lawyers. Lawyers. Talking. Talking.

LAWYER:

(FADES IN AND OUT) And I say to you, gentlemen of the jury, that never in the history of this community has a more cold-blooded murder been perpetrated.

JOAN:

(OVERLAPS WITH THE FADES) Doctors! Was I sane? Was I insane? Doctors -- more doctors!

DOCTOR:

(FADES IN AND OUT) No doubt of it, gentlemen, this girl is sane! I'll stake my professional reputation on that! I'd say she's completely responsible for her actions!

JOAN:

(OVERLAPS WITH VOICES, SLOW THEN FASTER) Testimony. Evidence. Prosecution. Defense. People talking - talking - talking -talking, till I--

VOICES: (ALTERNATING, THEN IN UNISON) Guilty! I object! Gentlemen! Insane! Not insane! Insane! Not insane! Murderess! Murderess! Murderess! Murderess!

JOAN:

(SCREAMS) Stop!

SOUND:

TRANSITIONAL PAUSE

JOAN:

(NARRATES) Oh, mother. (BREAKS DOWN AND CRIES) Mother, what I've gone through! What a horrible thing she's done to me. (WEEPS HARD, THEN RECOVERS)

Mother, mother, I can't cry any more. There's so much to tell you. There was my lawyer -- the judge appointed him -- I had no money, you see. You see, mother, I - I didn't tell them my right name. I didn't want the newspapers to print it so that father would find out. They don't even know about me now, mother. It's best that way, don't you think so?

Oh, yes. I was telling you about my lawyer. His name was Eric. He was very kind. He tried so hard to help me. So very hard. (FADES)

ERIC: Joan. Listen to me, Joan. Why don't you let me help you? Tell me everything there is to tell.

JOAN:

(DISSUASIVE) Oh, please.

ERIC:

But the trial's almost over and things aren't going well for us, you know.

JOAN:

(HOPELESS) What difference does it make?

ERIC:

But, Joan, it does make a difference. It makes a difference to me. Oh, my darling, look at me.

JOAN:

(DISSUASIVE) Eric.

ERIC:

I want you to live, Joan. I want you to live, if not for your own sake, for mine.

JOAN:

It's too late.

ERIC:

No, no, it's not too late. This is a southern jury and you're a woman. Give them the slightest reason to doubt and they'll never convict you. But if you continue this silence, you will die, Joan, and I don't want you to die. I don't want you to die. (FADES)

JOAN: (NARRATES) He was in love with me, mother. Such a fine man -- in love with me who could never know love because of her.

Then the last day of the trial. In all those days, she'd never talked to me. Gone. Silent. He -- Eric -- made a speech to the jury. He said that if I killed the man, there must have been a good reason for what I did, a reason I - I couldn't tell even to him. Oh, mother, how could I tell him of her -- that horror within me? Then the jury went out -- oh, such a long time. Eric was very pleased. He said the longer they stayed out, the better. (FADES)

SOUND:

MURMUR OF COURTROOM ... CONTINUES IN BG

ERIC:

(HOPEFUL) The jury's been out almost six hours now, Joan. It's a good sign.

JOAN:

(LOW) You've been very kind, Eric.

MUSIC:

"CARMEN" THEME ... CONTINUES IN BG

CARMEN:

Joan-n-n--

JOAN:

(STARTLED) You!

ERIC:

What is it, Joan?

JOAN:

(TENSE) Nothing, Eric.

CARMEN:

No need to worry, Joan. They won't convict you.

ERIC (ALARMED) Joan, what's the matter? You're so pale--

JOAN:

(STRUGGLES FOR CONTROL) I - I'm all right.

SOUND:

SUDDEN BRIEF BUZZ OF CROWD

VOICE:

(OFF) The jury's coming in!

ERIC:

The jury? (EXCITED) Look. Look, darling, they're - they're smiling.

CARMEN:

You'll live, Joan. You'll live. And I'll live with you!

ERIC:

(EXULTANT) Joan, Joan, I think we did it!

CARMEN:

We'll both live, Joan. We'll live - for Eric.

JOAN:

No! Not him!

CARMEN:

He loves you, doesn't he? We'll take care of him. First, it was Bob -- now, it's Eric. Then--

JOAN:

(PASSIONATE) I won't let you! I won't let you!

ERIC:

Joan -- what is it? The jury--

CARMEN:

Both of us, Joan -- with Eric.

JOAN:

(HYSTERICAL) I won't let you! I won't let you!

ERIC:

(ALARMED) Joan--!

FOREMAN:

(SLIGHTLY OFF) We, the jury, find the defendant not--

JOAN:

(CALLS OUT) Stop! Stop! I did it!

SOUND:

COURTROOM REACTS

JOAN:

I killed him! I'm guilty, I tell you!

ERIC:

No, Joan! Please, Joan--!

JOAN:

(SCREECHES) Guilty! Guiltyyyyyyy!

MUSIC:

TOPS EVERYTHING ... HOLDS ... THEN DOWN SLIGHTLY, IN BG ... OUT AT [X]

SOUND:

CELL DOOR UNLOCKS, OPENS

WARDEN:

It's time, miss.

CHAPLAIN:

(OFF, RECITES 23RD PSALM, IN BG ... OUT AT [Y])

SOUND:

SLOW FOOTSTEPS ON CONCRETE

JOAN:

(NARRATES) They're leading me from the cell, mother. The corridor is long and dark. I'm not afraid to die, mother. I'm not afraid. When I die, she dies, too. [X][Y] Her evil dies with me! That's why I'll die happy, mother -- happy --

SOUND:

ANOTHER CELL DOOR OPENS ... SLOW FOOTSTEPS CONTINUE, THEN UP CREAKY WOODEN STEPS, IN BG

JOAN:

(NARRATES) Another door, mother -- light -- the gallows. But I can't be afraid, mother -- I can't. She dies, too.

MUSIC:

SACRED ... SOFTLY IN BG ... OUT AT [X]

JOAN:

(NARRATES) We walk up stairs -- the gallows platform. I'm smiling, mother. Smiling down at all of them looking up at me down there.

SOUND:

FOOTSTEPS OUT

JOAN:

(NARRATES, TEARFUL) I'm smiling, mother. I mustn't be afraid, mother. I mustn't. She dies with me. The evil of her.

CARMEN:

I will not die with you, Joan!

JOAN:

You will! You will, Carmen!

CARMEN:

I'll be close to you -- fire in you -- for all eternity! You hear me? For all eternity! I might have had life but for you -- you hear me? Life! And you stole the body from me! For that, I'll never give you peace! Never! Never! Hmph! His hand is on the lever. In a second, the trap beneath your feet! But no peace for you, you white one! Never! Nev--! [X]

SOUND:

GALLOWS TRAP IS SPRUNG ... REVERBERATION

WARDEN:

(PAUSE) The Law is satisfied!

MUSIC:

SLOWLY SWELLS TO AN EXALTED, SACRED STRAIN, THEN DOWN SLIGHTLY, IN BG

JOAN:

(SOFT, FREE FROM EARTHLY CARES) You were wrong, Carmen. Evil one -- you were wrong. Now there is -- peace.

MUSIC:

SWELLS TO TRIUMPHANT FINISH

ANNOUNCER:

Tonight's play was especially written for radio by Arch Oboler and featured Betty Garde in the dual role of Joan and Carmen. Included in the cast were Hester Sondergaard, Frank Lovejoy, John Brown, Arnold Moss and Gilbert Mack. Next week, we will bring you three short plays of children and their ways, with a cast including Mr. Ray Collins and Sidney Lumet. Arch Oboler's Plays are presentations of the National Broadcasting Company.

MUSIC:

NBC CHIMES