- Hallelujah by Jay Squires
This work has reached the exceptional level
You Don't Really Care For Music, Do You?
Hallelujah by Jay Squires
Dialogue Only Writing Contest contest entry

Word Count: 953

Come on in. Have a seat. Take off your clothes if you’ve a mind to. I know you’ve the body to.
I’m in and seated. How do you know I haven’t already?
Taken off your clothes?
Sure, since I’ve got the body to. Don’t smile.
Why not? I wouldn’t put it past you to sneak up and shake them in my face. You here alone?
I’m here, too.
No? June then … with a cold. A bit of a chest cold, June? Come here; let Uncle Dave feel how bad.
Come on, David, that’s so freaking juvenile. Leave her alone.
D’you want to be left alone, Sweetheart? I mean really?
I—I don’t know what you want me to say.
Don’t you worry about it, dear. David, that’s enough!
Never mind .... Elizabeth, I don’t know why I put up with you.
Sure, you do. I can tell you. You want me to tell you why?
Forget it …. Where’s Winters? Where’s my Bling h2o?
He’s probably scouring LA for it. You thirsty? I’ll get you a glass of water.
Bling h2o’s not just water. You know that.
No, it’s forty-five freakin’ dollars a frosted bottle with a cork-for-a-lid-water, you snob.
That’s enough, Elizabeth! It’s written into the contract, you know.
Yes, I know, but not this one. This was a rushed gig and Winters worked his ass off just to get them to go along with your demands. It seems forgivable that your water slipped through the cracks.
Forgivable! Forgivable! Let me show you how forgivable. June, I have a job for you.
Find Winters. Someone’s got his phone number. You tell Winters he’s got five minutes to be here with my Bling h2o, or he can look for another job. Got that?
I don’t—think I can do that ….
What do you mean, you can’t? You will or Winters won’t be the only one without a job.
You stay out of this, Elizabeth. Now get out, June. Five minutes. Go.
David ...
Is she gone? I didn’t hear the door close.
She’s gone.
You listen, Liz.
Oh, it’s Liz now?
Elizabeth, don’t everever embarrass me like that again.
It’s called, "putting up with me." And I’ll do it as often as I need to.
Really! You think you’re indispensable?
To you? Oh, yes, entirely. You want to test me?
I might just do that, Elizabeth.
Listen to those fans out there—the impatient rustling of your fans. You can hear them through the walls. Now, tell me this, Jimmy ... you don’t think that on some street corner in Los Angeles, or Chicago or New York, I can’t find another blind guy with a middling talent who’s willing to trade his guitar and cigar-box of coins for a fifty-gig-a-year packed audience of twenty-five-dollar-a-seat teenybopper fans? Don’t ya think I can do that, Jimmy? Don’t ya?
Ten minutes to show time, King David.
Thanks, Fredrick. Let me know when they’re ready to announce him.
Yes, Ms. Beaker.
He’s gone, Jimmy. We should get your cape and crown on and, oh … there’s your scepter.
I do appreciate you.
No, you don’t. But you’re afraid of me. And that works just fine. Now, hold your arms up from the side—yeah, like you’re being crucified. We’ll just slip on this tunic, there. And your cape.
I was only trying to scare June. I wouldn’t …
Oh … you couldn’t. Same with Winters. You actually have very little power. Of course, you know that. And now your crown, Your Majesty. Just a bit of a jaunty tilt to it, so your hair kind of billows out from beneath. The young ladies, especially, love your hair. And … you’re going to lead with?
My usual opening. Hallelujah.
Ah, yes, to the crescendo. Couldn’t be a better choice. Lovely. Lovely. Sing the opening for me. But first … lead me up to it.
You guide me to center stage, direct my hand to the mic. I wait, unsmiling, for the audience to quiet, until I could hear a pin drop.
Yes, and all the time your head is?


Don’t be jerking it around. You don’t raise your head until it’s totally, totally quiet. And then what do you do, King David? Tell me what you—
My sun glasses. Slowly I remove them. I’m the only blind performer who removes his glasses to sing.
It's because your eyes are really quite beautiful. But you don't just remove your glasses …
No, I fling them out to the audience.
Brilliant! Yes! I heard EBay fetched five grand for a pair. Now … now the voice. Sing it.
“Now I've heard there was a secret chord
That David played, and it pleased the Lord
But you don't really care for music, do you?
It goes like this
The fourth, the fifth
The minor fall, the major lift
The baffled king composing Hallelujah

Oh, yes … you nailed it. David, your voice was not middling. No, not at all middling. Today I sensed a tincture of greatness. Together we’ll get you there. You believe that, don’t you?
I can’t do it without you, Elizabeth.
Nor should you try. Ever.
King David, Ms. Beaker, are we ready? Shall I give the signal?
We’re ready, Fredrick.
I’ll leave the door ajar so you’ll hear when to come out.
Now, okay, he’s gone. Here is your scepter. Give me your arm. Are you ready?
I’m ready. Ohhhhh, Liz! Would you listen to them?
They’re needy. They’re vulnerable. Each and every one of them. Remember that. Careful now. There are two steps down from the doorway. Lean against me, King David. Trust me to guide you.


Author Notes
Thanks for the use of the totally appropriate picture, Liilia


© Copyright 2011 Jay Squires All rights reserved.
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