Therapy Tacos
rating: +24+x

Act I - Scene III


Jazz's house, which is set with a coffee table, central sofa, and two recliners. Jazz is pacing back and forth behind the sofa, visibly distraught, having a wordless/mumbling conversation with herself. After 10-20 seconds of this pacing, she goes over and sits on the chair further towards stage-left, sadly facing forwards at an implied television, and picks up a remote from the table. She clicks the remote once, and a spotlight goes up backstage center on a reporter holding a microphone, facing straight out into the audience.

TV REPORTER
Claims by the aforementioned "SCP Foundation" that the disappearance of North Korea was caused by pockets of "untapped thaumatergic energy" have thus far been met with extreme doubt, so while we are still unsure of what caused the incident, with many believing it to be a secret military weapon, and many more claiming it to be an act of God, what we're sure of is that we need to be alert. For Channel 12 news, I'm Natasha Fliers.


Jazz clicks the remote, and the spotlight on Natasha turns off. She twiddles her thumbs for a moment before her phone begins vibrating. Reluctantly, she picks up her phone and turns it on.

CHANDLER
Hey, Jazz?

JAZZ
Hello?

CHANDLER
It's Chandler, from Site-96. Do you mind if I talk to you for a second?

JAZZ
(visibly uncomfortable)
Yeah, sure, of course.

CHANDLER
So, I know you must be really distraught over what happened, I totally get that, and you're totally allowed to be sad and stuff, I… I just do… have to sort of ask you to maybe… come in… to work? Just for a bit? I- I know you're super sad about it but you… you were on the team responsible for this thing so ummm… it'd be super cool… to have your side of things… and reports and stuff…


Short pause.

CHANDLER
Look, it's… it's actually a little more serious than I'm making it out to be. We found the source of the problem, and it appears to have been… well… it seems like one of the thaumic engines was set way too high and… that's… that's what caused the flare-up.


Jazz gasps, her face in complete, morbid shock.

JAZZ
I… I did the final check… I signed off on all the engines… I…

CHANDLER
No- no, Jazz, I'm not… I'm not accusing you of anything it's… I mean… nobody blames you, you just… you… gotta talk to us. The public's been on our ass about getting answers for this whole mess and we need the full story, or else we're in deep shit, alright? That's all, I'll see you soon.


The phone beeps, and Jazz turns it off, placing it to the side. She sits alone, head in her hands for a moment, before beginning to hyperventilate, followed by standing abruptly and grabbing a pillow off of the sofa. She screams violently into the pillow for as long as she can sustain, until the scream turns into sobbing as she slumps onto the couch. Laying down across the couch, clutching the pillow to her chest, her sobs get quieter and quieter until she has fallen asleep.

A ticking sound effect plays to imply the passage of time. After a short pause, Brimley Opencoat, Jazz's boyfriend, walks in from an invisible door to the room stage-right. Brimley is on the phone.

BRIMLEY
Yeah man, I dunno, it was okay, but like, nothing special, yaknow?


Short pause.

BRIMLEY
Bro, if you wanna get peed on, like, that's your problem, dude. I'm just not about that life.


Short pause.

BRIMLEY
Ahaha, yeah right, whatever man. I gotta go. Later.


Brimley turns off his phone and places it in his pocket.

BRIMLEY
(shouting)
Yo, babe! I'm home!


Jazz wakes with a start, nearly falling off the couch. Brimley, just now noticing her, walks over.

BRIMLEY
Oh, didn't see ya there, babe. How's it chilling?

JAZZ
(yawning)
Fuck… what time is it?

BRIMLEY
Half past I don't give a fuck? Why are you asleep anyways?

JAZZ
(ashamed)
I… I shouldn't… it's fine. I don't want to make a big deal out of it.

BRIMLEY
Okay, cool beans. Speaking of which, wanna grab tacos? Cause like, I'm really in the mood for tacos.

JAZZ
Maybe… I don't know if I'm up to it to be honest.

BRIMLEY
What do you mean?

JAZZ
I… something happened at work.

BRIMLEY
(sarcastically)
Okay… can you be more vague?

JAZZ
I'm sorry, I'm sorry. I just… I messed up. I messed up really bad, and it's all my fault, and I feel so awful…

BRIMLEY
(looking at his phone)
Uh huh…

JAZZ
I caused so much pain… so much suffering, and all because I'm a stupid fucking piece of shit. I'm terrible and… and… and… and I didn't mean to but… I should have checked the gauges again, and then maybe… maybe…

BRIMLEY
(still looking at his phone)
Right… Yeah…

JAZZ
I just… I don't think I can handle being in public right now. Being outside.

BRIMLEY
(walking over to Jazz)
Hey, hey, babe, don't worry, everything you said… it's all okay, you know? Like, how about we go get some tacos and talk this over, ya know? They're not called "talk-Os" for nothing.

JAZZ
I really don't think I-

BRIMLEY
No, no, no, like listen, it's totally fine, right, because like, it's basically therapeutic to face what you don't want to do. It makes your emotions work better, you know? So we should definitely go, because Queso House closes in like 20 minutes also and all that… but you know, mostly for you.

JAZZ

BRIMLEY
So like… is that a yes? It feels like that's a yes.

JAZZ
(sighing)
Sure. Fine.

BRIMLEY
Haha, that's the spirit. You'll see, nothing works better for psychotherapy than some pork carnitas and shit.


Brimley gets up and walks towards the door. Jazz sighs heavily.

BRIMLEY
Did you say something babe?

JAZZ
No, nothing.

BRIMLEY
Sick.


Brimley walks quickly offstage. Jazz picks herself up, sighing once more, before reluctantly following.
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