Suckered By Love
Setting: Blank stage
Vena: (entering, noticing Zela standing there, looking at a magazine) Zela!! Hey! It's me! Vena! From high school!
Zela: Vena!? Oh my God! I haven't seen... what... fifteen years, has it been? Fifteen?
Vena: Yes! Yes! That seems right... Wow! What are you doing in Millfort?
Zela: I've been sort of moving east for the past five years, little bit further each year, it seems. This year... it's Millfort.
Vena: Yeah? That's great; so you'll be in town for a while?
Zela: If patterns hold, at least a year, maybe longer.
Vena: Fabulous! Wow! It will be so great to have you around!
Zela: Yeah; it's great to run into old friends so far from the old hometown.
Vena: Sure is!
Zela: How did you end up out here, yourself.
Vena: Ohhh... same old story... fell in love in college, then followed him around the country.... he's a regional sales representative, traveling all the time, but we moved here about three years ago. His company's based here. He doesn't have to do as many trips now; so we've settled into the slow life... small towns, you know.
Zela: Yeah, I like what I've seen here so far... maybe you could give me a tour sometime?
Vena: Yes! Love to! I like it better than most of the places we've lived before.
Zela: Where were you before?
Vena: Lincoln, Nebraska... then Milwaukee...
Zela: Oh, I spent a lot of time in both those cities too.
Vena: Then it was Dayton... Ohio, you know.
Zela: Yes, I lived there for over a year!
Vena: Weird! Were you following me? (laughter)
Zela: (laughter) No, no, ha ... doubt it... following my heart...
Vena: Sure... then I ended up in a little town about an hour direct east of Pittsburgh called... uhh... uhhh... jeez, I'm blanking on the name now...
Vena: (same time as Zela) Blairsville... weird, how did you know that? You didn't live there too? (laughter)
Zela: (laughter, then more creeped out) Yes... yes, I did. A few years back, not for very long...
Vena: O.K., I've heard of coincidences, but that's just bizarre...
Zela: Yeah... definitely.
Vena: Then I moved to... wait... why don't you tell me where you moved to after Blairsville...
Zela: Gardenia... New Jersey....
Vena: (overlapping) New Jersey. Right.
Zela: You're with your husband? Travels a lot?
Vena: Well... yes... used to until about three years ago, then we kind of settled down here; he got promoted to a job at the headquarters, doesn't travel as much...
Zela: Interesting... Well, it sure has been nice bumping into you again! I'm sure I'll see you...
Vena: Wait, Zela... ummm... you said you were following your heart... that's what brought you to Millfort, right?
Zela: Yes... I'm dating a man; I met him about five years ago.
Vena: You just moved to Millfort, though... I've been here for three years... so....
Zela: Right.. ummm... so...
Vena: My husband should be meeting me here (checks watch) any minute now.
Zela: Vena... what's your husband's name?
Vena: Matt... Matt Pertzan
Zela: Ohh... O.K.
Vena: You ... know him... ?
Zela: Steve Amito... my boyfriend... Steve Amito.
Vena: O.K. Well, I have to say I was a little concerned... weren't you?
Zela: Ummm... yes... you hear stories about travelling salesman, don't you?
Vena: That's what Steve does too?
Zela: Yes. He's been getting settled up here for the last few years, then he decided that I should move here too.
Vena: Oh. (long pause) You... you don't ... ummm... happen to... have a picture of Steve, by any chance?
Zela: (slowly digs in her purse) I should have one... it's a couple years old, now... but
(Matt enters unseen to either woman, gives Vena a hug from behind, she stiffens, whirls around, Zela looks up quickly, freezes)
Matt: Hey, sweetheart!
Vena: Zela, this is my husband...
Zela: Steve Amito.
Vena: (same time as Zela) Matt Pertzan.
Zela: (anger) Hello, Steven.
Matt: Ummm... it's Matt... (offering his hand)
Zela: (anger, tears starting, unbelieving) You.... you... you! Five years! I've followed you for five years! And.... (continued ad-lib of anger)
Matt: (startled) Whoa! Hey? Ummm... (to Vena) Who is this?
Vena: This is an old friend of mine, from high school, Zela Kerring
Zela: You know exactly who I am!! I... I've never known your real name until now??!! You FUCKING MONSTER!!
Matt: (looking around) Hey... calm down... there must be some mistake... my name is Matt Pertzan, I'm a National Sales Manager for Northeast Office and Technical Supply. I'm married to....
Zela: Her! Fine! I would have appreciated knowing that, a really long time ago!
Vena: I don't think he's ever met you before, Zela.
Zela: What?! You're defending him?! You don't happen to know Steve Amito, who just so happens to be a National Sales Manager for Northeast Office and Technical Supply.
Matt: No... never heard of him... until now, I guess...
Vena: My husband is not a liar, Zela!
Zela: Wake up! He's been living a double life for the last five years! Musta got bored with you and decided to get another woman... only problem is he picked a woman who happened to be an old friend of his own wife!
Vena: No! You're completely wrong! This man has been here for me for eleven years. He travels a lot, but he doesn't cheat!
Matt: O.K. O.K. Hold it! C'mon now!
Zela: O.K. I'm tired of this one.
Vena: Yeah, me too.
Matt: No one's watching anyway.
Zela: Let's go back inside...
Matt: Street theater isn't any good if no one watches.
Zela: Maybe I needed to yell louder?
(they are walking off, lights fading)
Vena: No, you can't go overboard, you know?
Matt: Let's work on the script a little more.
Vena: Definitely, I think we have a winner with this one.
Zela: Maybe if I tear at my clothing?
Matt: Hey, whatever it takes to wake this town up...