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Title: Fork in the Road

By: BAAM (2018)

Characters:

ROCKY the raccoon, male, 2 years old.

ROB the raccoon, male, age 7, he comes from a long line of row matters.

Setting: They live under the porch of an abandoned house and they’re talking in front of the stairs. The grass around the house is unattended so it has grown taller than them.

Time: 1 in the morning

At Rise: Rob is in front of the stairs taking time to himself. Rocky comes from under the stairs to join his father.

 

(Rob is staring at the sky, stuck in thought)

ROCKY

Hey Dad

ROB

(Snaps out of thought. Notices his son and smiles.)

Oh hey Rock, come here.

(Rocky walks to his father and Rob puts his arm around him)

What you doing boy? How you doing?

ROCKY

I’m alright dad. You?

ROB

Better than some, worse than others. You know. You excited about your birthday coming up?

ROCKY

Yeah, uh. That’s why I came to talk to you about.

ROB

(Keeps talking as if he doesn’t notice what Rocky just said)

The big three years old. You know what that means right? You get to join us out there in those dumpsters.

ROCKY

(Trying to cut his father off)

Dad.

ROB

(Continuing, still not noticing Rocky)

It’s me and your brother rest out there right now, but when we rolling, will be better than ever.

ROCKY

Dad!

ROB

(Snaps out of it)

I’m sorry son, but you know how excited I am about this. It’s a big thing for you. For us.

ROCKY

Dad, that’s what I came out here to talk to you about.

ROB

What? You got them jitters in your stomach huh? Don’t worry, we all got it before we joined the business.

ROCKY

No, that’s not it. I have something to tell you. I just don’t know how to say it.

ROB

Well just say it. You know you can tell your pops anything.

ROCKY

(Cautiously)

Well you know how my birthday is coming up…

ROB

Right.

ROCKY

And I’ll be turning 3.

ROB

Right.

ROCKY

And that’s the age when I’m supposed to join the family business.

ROB

(Getting irritated with Rocky)

Boy, just get to the point already. It’s cold as ever out here.

ROCKY

Okay, okay. (Sighs and pauses). I was thinking about not joining you and my brother out there.

ROB

Well, I mean you don’t gotta come with us on your birthday, we can call a day off to celebrate.

ROCKY

No.  I mean like…ever.

ROB

(Finally noticing what Rocky is saying)

What are you getting at?

ROCKY

(sighs) You know what I’m getting at dad. I don’t think I can do it.

ROB

Oh boy stop it. You just scared. You nervous. Talking on that nonsense.

ROCKY

It’s not nonsense, Dad. I’ve been thinking about it and I feel like it isn’t for me.

ROB

(getting frustrated) What do you mean it isn’t for you? It’s what the family does. What else is for you?

ROCKY

(Says in a low voice, without confidence) School.

ROB

(Not hearing Rocky and with anger) Boy, speak up!

ROCKY

(says louder, still without confidence) I said school!

ROB

School? (scoffs) School? Boy, what done got into you for you to come out here saying all this. You ain’t going to school!

ROCKY

Why not? Why can’t I go?

ROB

Because… it’s just not a thing. Raccoons don’t go to school.

ROCKY

Well I can. I’ve been in contact with the school for animals in San Francisco, and they’ve never had a raccoon here before. I’ll be the first. Which means I’ll have to be on my p’s and q’s, but I can do it. They want me.

ROB

Want you? They don’t want you! Don’t you see that you’re only setting yourself up for failure? Us, we don’t do that. We struggle. We fight for our lives, but I have a guaranteed meal ticket for you guys! Why can’t you just take it?

ROCKY

Why does it always have to be what you want though, Dad?

ROB

It’s not what I want! It’s the truth the world out there isn’t made for animals like us. It will take you, chew you up and spit you right back out! I only survived because your grandfather introduced me to this game at a young age I can’t imagine what would have happened if I tried what you’re doing

ROCKY

But that’s you Dad. We’re different animals! God made us two different animals for a reason. Since I was young, I’ve always been different. That’s why I said nothing has gotten into me. I’ve always known this lifestyle wasn’t for me. When all my friends were wrestling. Fighting and all that tuff stuff was never me.

​(says with shame) I’ve always been softer… but I seen how you looked at my brother and how he was the son you wanted. So I put on that mask.

ROB

But what we do runs in your blood. How are you just going to throw it all away? Your brother has been doing it and I know you see him. He’s living nice! You don’t want that? This is made out for you! Why mess it all up?

ROCKY

But you’re not understanding. Yeah, it sounds nice but, it’s not me! I want to go out there in the world and see what it has for me. I can’t be myself here. I’m tired of trying to impress everyone and being what everyone else wants. Do you know how it feels to wake up ​everyday being someone else? If I go to that school, I’ll be surrounded by people like me. I’ll fit in and just be me.

ROB

No! That’s where you’re wrong. If you think you’ll go over there and they’ll accept you, you got another thing coming. Those animals over there don’t look like us! We’re not made for that. I put in Blood, Sweat, & Tears into this business, for years just to make sure that us as a family survive. To make sure that you and your brother had a way to feed yourself when you guys got older. So you guys don’t have to work for someone else, breaking your back, just to make ends meet. I’m trying to avoid the struggle for you, and your just trying to jump right into it.

ROCKY

I don’t know how to get my point across to you without you badgering me.

ROB

You’re right. I don’t want this to be an argument, but I can’t just watch you fight your whole life. You’re my son and I only want what’s best for you, that’s why I’m trying to get you into the business.

ROCKY

I understand that and I know you’re doing this outta love, but I feel like if you really love me, you’ll accept me and what I’m trying to do as your son.

ROB

(Takes a minute to think)

Where is the school at again?

ROCKY

San Francisco.

ROB

San Francisco, that’s far. You sure you can handle it?

ROCKY

Yes Dad, I can handle myself.

ROB

You’re right, you’re older now, and I just gotta put more faith in you.

ROCKY

That’s all I’m asking for.

ROB

Come here boy.

(They hug.)

END OF PLAY



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