“This is a Robbery”

(A diner. Sam is seated at the counter. Peggy stands behind it.)

PEGGY
One big Texas skillet for Sam. I laid out the eggs like a lil’ smiley face.

SAM
You sure know how to make an ol’ man feel special, Peggy.

PEGGY
Well you are our favorite customer. (Whispering) Don’t tell nobody.

(Rob storms on stage.)

ROB
Alright, this is a robbery! Everybody put your hands up and get down on the ground!

(Sam jumps out of his chair and gets down on the ground.)

PEGGY
Please, take whatever you want, just don’t hurt us.

ROB
I think your actions will decide if anyone gets hurt. I want you to very calmly empty out the regist–

PEGGY
We have cake in the back!

ROB
What?

PEGGY
There’s a birthday cake in the back.

ROB
Why are you telling me this?

PEGGY
I don’t know. I guess in case you wanted to steal the cake too.

ROB
Why would I want to steal a cake! That doesn’t make sense! Where was I? Dang it! I forgot what I was saying!

(Exit Rob.)

SAM
Is he gone?

PEGGY
I surely hope so. I’m shakin’.

(Rob storms back in.)

ROB
Alright, this is a robbery!

SAM
Damn it!

(Sam drops out of his chair again.)

PEGGY
Please, just take whatever you want, really. We don’t want no trouble.

ROB
Your actions will decide if anyone gets hurt. I want you to very calmly empty out the regist– Damn it. You didn’t say not to hurt you this time, did you. You said you didn’t want no trouble. Ask me not to hurt anyone.

PEGGY
Um, please don’t hurt–

ROB
No! We gotta do the whole thing over.

(Exit Rob.)

SAM
What in the hell is going on?

PEGGY
I have no earthly idea, Sam.

(Rob storms back in.)

SAM
Damn it all.

(Sam drops down to the ground again.)

ROB
Everyone, this is a robbery. Put your hands up and get down on the ground.
(A beat.)
Well?

PEGGY
Hm? Oh! Uh, please don’t– what was it I said?

(Rob writes Peggy’s lines for her on a napkin.)

ROB
When I tell you all to get down on the ground, you say
(doing an impression of Peggy)
“Take what you want, but please don’t hurt us.” Got it?

PEGGY
Got it.

ROB
Are you here?

PEGGY
I’m here.

ROB
Are you present?

PEGGY
I’m present.

ROB
Ok. Let’s go.

(Exit Rob.)

 

PEGGY
(reading her lines)
Please don’t hurt us. Please don’t hurt us. Come on, Peg.

ROB
Alright, this is a robbery! Everybody put your hands up and get down on the ground! Sam.

SAM
Damn it.

(Sam slowly gets down on the ground.)

ROB
Well done, Sam. Peggy.

PEGGY
Take whatever you want, but please don’t hurt us.

ROB
Good job, Peggy. But I think it’ll be your actions that decide if anyone gets hurt. I want you to– very clamly– put all of the bills into this bag. Can you do that, Peggy?

PEGGY
Uh-huh.

(Peggy puts the money in the bag and gives it back to Rob.)

ROB
Great job guys. This ends the robbery. You all have a great day.

(Exit Rob. Peggy and Sam stand silent for a beat before going back to normal.)

SAM
My skillet’s cold.

PEGGY
I’ll get you another. Hey Sam?

SAM
Yes, Peggy?

PEGGY
Why didn’t you stop that guy?

SAM
I suppose it had to do with his brandishing a pistol.

PEGGY
Oh. But Sam?

SAM
Yes, Peggy?

PEGGY
But you’re the sheriff round these parts, Sam.

SAM
That I am, Peggy. That I am.

(Blackout.)

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