Plays
Excerpt: Mother Daughter
Scene One

Curtain rises showing Master Deirdre and First Daughter, Kirsten, sparring center stage. They are clearly going through a series of spontaneous but standard moves. The action is vigorous and with bodily contact, but all the hand and foot strikes on both sides are met with blocks. The action can be almost ceremonial in the beginning, getting more serious in each phase. Master Deirdre is mostly defending but she is clearly the dominant player, and when she attacks she drives Kirsten back.
 
On her second drive Master Deirdre feints then gets a thrusting kick through to Kirsten's leg. Although normally strikes are immediately withdrawn, Master Deirdre stops short of actual contact, and holds her foot in place almost touching Kirsten's leg, balancing on her other foot, and stops the bout. This makes it clear to Kirsten (and the audience) what could have happened.
 
DEIRDRE: Harshly. Focus! I could have broken your leg. I will next time if you don't concentrate. Discipline your thoughts.
 
KIRSTEN: Rebellious. I don't have to do it your way.
 
DEIRDRE: You'll do it my way or not at all.
 
KIRSTEN: I don't have to listen to you.
 
DEIRDRE: Don't answer back! Show respect.
 
Master Deirdre attacks her again. Kirsten fights back. The fight is fiercer, less disciplined, with Kirsten showing signs of anger, and Master Deirdre colder, more involved now. Master Deirdre pierces Kristen's defense more quickly, this time with a kick to the chest, again stopping short and holding the position.
 
DEIRDRE: Again! If I'd followed through, I could have broken a rib. You'll never progress if you can't be disciplined.
 
KIRSTEN: Your discipline is too rigid. It has no soul.
 
DEIRDRE: You have to submit your will.
 
KIRSTEN: Defiantly. Not to yours. My will is my own.
 
DEIRDRE: Almost shouting. Listen to me. You must have discipline.
 
Master Deirdre attacks again, angrily. Almost immediately she gets a blow through to the front of Kirsten's neck, a distinctive blow with outstretched fingers like a spear, again stopping short and holding the position.
 
DEIRDRE: Quietly but with intense ferocity. This would crush your windpipe. You'd never breathe again.
 
KIRSTEN: Taunting. I suppose that's your famous "striking serpent," the blow that causes instant death.
 
DEIRDRE: You are impertinent.
 
KIRSTEN: The blow so fatal, you've never used it.
 
DEIRDRE: You're impossible. It's not something to joke about.
 
KIRSTEN: My father says you've never used it, because you can't control it!
 
DEIRDRE: Really angry. Enough! You're a monster! I cannot work with you.
 
Master Deirdre turns away as Kirsten flicks a blow at her and strikes her on the head. Master Deirdre instinctively reacts with her "striking serpent." Kirsten clutches her throat, makes choking sounds, and falls back dead. Master Deirdre is stunned with horror and remorse.

Copyright 2010 Samuel Buckley    Designed by Phoenix Story Productions llc