Scene 6

Scene 6

SETTING:                   In the hospital room.

AT RISE:                   PATRICK is staring out the window,

lost in thought.

(Inhale-Exhale-Inhale-Exhale…)

MARY

Why is it taking so long?

PATRICK

(turning to MARY)

The doctor said it would take a couple hours to set up. Paperwork I guess.

(MARY groans.)

(NURSE KELLY enters the room and approaches the bed.)

MARY

(to NURSE KELLY)

Where’s the doctor?

NURSE KELLY

He should be here soon, Mrs. Johnson. It won’t be much longer.

MARY

(lifts her hand and points)

That’s is my son – Patrick.

(pauses)

He’s single. . .

PATRICK

(smiles back, embarrassed)

Hi – nice to meet you.

NURSE KELLY

Nice to meet you, too.

(turns to MARY)

The doctor will be here soon, Mrs. Johnson.

(She walks out of the room.)

(PATRICK approaches to the bed and sits down.)

MARY

She’s pretty.

PATRICK

(rolling his eyes)

Yes.

MARY

And. . .

PATRICK

And now’s not really the time – is it, mom?

MARY

And when is the time?

PATRICK

I don’t know – not now.

(A short period of silence.)

MARY

You need to get over that woman.

(pauses)

Stop hiding.

PATRICK

I’m not hiding! I’m just not ready yet.

(pauses)

Look, mom – can we just change the subject.

(They both remain quite for a while.)

MARY

Patrick – do you believe in heaven?

PATRICK

(surprised)

What?

MARY

Do you believe in heaven?

PATRICK

(struggles)

I, uh – I don’t know, mom. But if there is a heaven, I’m sure you are going there.

MARY

Oh, yes!

(Inhale-Exhale)

All I’ve put up with!

(A tall man enters the room. He is casually dressed in chinos, loafers, and a button down shirt.)

PATRICK

Adam – how did you find us?

ADAM JOHNSON

(dismissive)

I called the hospital.

PATRICK

And you didn’t call me?

(The question is completely ignored.)

ADAM

(Approaches the bed and looks at his mother. For a few seconds they stare at each other.)

Hi mom. Not doing so well?

MARY

I’m dying!

ADAM

(clearly uncomfortable)

Uh – Yes. . .

PATRICK

They’re going to give her morphine and—

(ADAM throws up a hand to stop his brother.)

ADAM

(to MARY)

Is there anything I can do?

MARY

You can tell them to hurry up!

(ADAM fidgets.)

MARY

Where’s Katherine?

ADAM

She had to clear up some stuff at work.

MARY

She’s always working.

ADAM

Yes. . .

MARY

(pauses to breathe)

Well – pull up a chair and join the party.

(ADAM looks around the room. There’s only one chair and PATRICK is in it.)

PATRICK

(stands up)

Here – take mine. I’ll get another one.

(PATRICK leaves the room but ADAM doesn’t sit down. Instead, he goes to the window and looks out.)

ADAM

(barks a little laugh)

Not much of a view here.

(He turns around and leans against the sill.)

(PATRICK enters the room, dragging a chair)

PATRICK

(to MARY)

I just saw the doctor. He says it won’t be much longer. They’re still waiting for the morphine.

(Another crabby groan from MARY.)

(PATRICK pushes the chair toward ADAM and sits by the bed. ADAM still doesn’t sit. Nothing is spoken for a long while. The mood is tense.)

(Inhale-Exhale-Inhale-Exhale…)

DR. LANDEN

(enters the room and approaches the bed)

Just a few minutes more, Mrs. Johnson. I need to ask you once again – are you sure you want to proceed with this?

MARY

(no hesitation)

Yes!

DR. LANDEN

(pauses)

Okay. I’ll be right back with the nurses.

(He leaves the room.)

MARY

Well – if you boys have anything to say. . .

(Inhale-Exhale)

Now’s the time.

(turns to ADAM)

Adam?

(ADAM looks even more uncomfortable. He pauses, doesn’t know what to do. Finally he gets off the sill and slowly approaches the bed. As he does this, PATRICK stands up to get out of his way.)

ADAM

(leans closer to MARY and pauses)

Mom – I. . . I’m sorry I was so much trouble.

(Nobody speaks. ADAM’s words just hang there.)

MARY

That’s okay, Adam. That’s okay. . .

(She pats his hand.)

(ADAM straightens up and walks back to the window.)

MARY

(to PATRICK)

What about you, Patrick?

PATRICK

(Horrified. This is all happening too fast and he doesn’t know what to say. He approaches the bed and looks down at MARY. He wants to say something but nothing comes out.)

Mom, I — I can’t think of anything.

MARY

What?

(PATRICK’s cell phone rings. He takes it out of his pocket and looks to see who it is.)

PATRICK

It’s Scott!

(He answers the phone. Both MARY and ADAM are watching him.)

Scott – where are you?

SCOTT JOHNSON

(Offstage – over phone.)

Pat?… Pat?… Are you there, Pat?

PATRICK

Yes, I’m here. Can you hear me?

SCOTT

Yes – that’s better now.

PATRICK

Where are you?

SCOTT

In Phoenix – at a meeting. I’ll be back tomorrow. Is there anyway she can hold out until then?

PATRICK

(looks at MARY)

No. They are giving her morphine soon. She’ll be unconscious after that.

SCOTT

(shocked)

What! Until she dies?

PATRICK

(Still looking at his mother, who can’t hear what Scott is saying.)

Yes.

SCOTT

And how long will that take?

PATRICK

I don’t know.

SCOTT

Jesus!

PATRICK

Yes.

SCOTT

Is there any way I can talk to her?

PATRICK

Yes. She’s right here. I’ll put her on.

(holds the phone out to MARY)

It’s Scott. He wants to talk to you.

(MARY groans and lifts her hand to take the phone. She brings it up to her mask.)

SCOTT

Mom?. . . Is that you, mom?

MARY

Speak up! I have a mask on.

SCOTT

(louder)

It’s me – Scott!

MARY

I know it’s you, honey.

SCOTT

(pauses)

Mom – I. . . Pat told me what’s going on. I — I love you mom. I love you. . .

(He starts crying softly.)

MARY

(reassuring – always the mother)

I know you do, Scotty.

SCOTT

(crying harder)

I’m sorry I couldn’t be there, mom. I’m so sorry. . . I didn’t know.

MARY

Of course you didn’t, honey.

SCOTT

I’m so sorry, mom. . .

MARY

That’s okay, Scotty. Don’t feel bad.

SCOTT

I love you, mom. . .

MARY

(sad)

I love you too, Scott.

(Unable to talk anymore, MARY holds the phone out to PATRICK.)

PATRICK

(takes the phone)

It’s Pat. Mom can’t talk anymore. Anyway, it’s almost time. Look – I’ll give you a call later, okay?

SCOTT

(pulls it together)

Yes – okay. I’ll catch the next flight I can.

PATRICK

Good. See you soon.

(He hangs up and puts the phone back into his pocket.)

(DR. LANDEN enters the room with NURSE KELLY and NURSE ANNE. NURSE ANNE is pushing a rolling IV stand with a drip pump and a bag of clear liquid hanging from the top. She rolls the stand next to the bed.)

PATRICK

(Doesn’t want to leave his mother’s side. Leans down, voice cracking.)

Mom. . . Everything good I am is because of you.

MARY

Now don’t make me regret this!

(She catches herself – reaches out and takes PATRICK’s hand. For seconds they hold onto each other.)

Love you. . .

(Complete silence in the room. Most have their heads lowered.)

DR. LANDEN

(taking charge)

Okay – shall we begin?

MARY

(Lets go of PATRICK’s hand. Nods to DR. LANDEN.)

Yes.

(PATRICK steps back from the bed, leaving it free for the nurses.)

DR. LANDEN

(to NURSE ANNE)

The bolus, please.

(NURSE ANNE opens a cellophane package and hands the syringe to DR. LANDEN. He brings it up for a look, squirts out a small amount of the liquid and then screws the tip into the catheter port in MARY’s arm.

DR. LANDEN

(to MARY)

I’m going to give you a shot to start things off, Mrs Johnson. Don’t worry – you won’t feel a thing.

(MARY nods her head and her breath quickens.)

DR. LANDEN

Okay. . .

(He injects the entire syringe with a slow, steady push, and MARY’s breathing begins to slow down. He removes the syringe and turns to NURSE ANNE.)

Connect the drip line and begin.

NURSE ANNE

Yes, doctor.

(She connects the drip hose to the same port in MARY’s arm and presses a few buttons on the pump. We hear a “Beep” as the machine comes on.  PATRICK now steps forward and takes MARY’s hand. Tears are rolling down his face. MARY is unconscious now. Everyone is watching her, holding their own breath. Several seconds pass.)

ADAM

(pointing at the drug stand)

The morphine bag. . . Is it suppose to empty so quickly?

(All heads snap up to look at the empty bag. Pandemonium breaks out.)

DR. LANDEN

(shocked)

Oh, my God!

(to NURSE KELLY)

Get some Naloxone – quick! Four milligrams to start.

(NURSE KELLY runs out of the room.)

DR. LANDEN

(to NURSE ANNE)

Remove the drip line. Her mask!

(He starts to remove MARY’s mask.)

(PATRICK and ADAM are standing next to each other, watching in disbelief.)

PATRICK

What’s going on? What are you doing?

DR. LANDEN

(looks at PATRICK)

All the morphine has entered her system. It’s hitting her like a freight train. She’ll be dead soon if we don’t neutralize it.

(Mask off, we see Mary’s face for the first time. She’s an old woman – thin and frail. As the morphine takes effect, her head tilts back on the pillow and her eyes start to flutter.)

PATRICK

(moving closer)

But. . . why don’t you just let her go?

DR. LANDEN

We can’t!

PATRICK

Why not?

DR. LANDEN

It’s against the law. We can’t cause her death.

PATRICK

(amazed)

But you were doing that anyway!

DR. LANDEN

It’s not the same thing. We can’t let her die like this. It’s not legal!

PATRICK

(angry)

So you bring her back to cover your own ass. I don’t believe it!

(NURSE KELLY runs into the room with two cellophane packs. She hands one to DR. LANDEN, who tears it open and connects the syringe to MARY’s arm. He injects the entire contents, then removes the syringe and stands back to see the effect.)

(MARY’s eyes stop fluttering and her head slowly tilts down on the pillow. She remains perfectly still. Is she dead?)

DR. LANDEN

(to NURSE KELLY)

Put her mask back on.

(NURSE KELLY puts the mask on MARY’s face and connect the straps. She turns on the breather.)

(Inhale-Exhale – very faint.)

(Everyone silent, still in shock.)

DR. LANDEN

(Leans toward MARY. Softly)

Mrs. Johnson? Mrs. Johnson – can you hear me?

(Nothing at first, but then MARY slowly rolls her head.)

DR. LANDEN

(gently shakes MARY’s arm)

Mrs. Johnson?

MARY

(voice muddled – barely audible)

Have you started?

DR. LANDEN

(exhales in relief)

No – not yet. Very soon, Mrs. Johnson. Just hang on a bit.

(He turns to the two sons and puts his finger up to his lips. He now points at the empty morphine bag and whispers to NURSE ANNE.)

Another one.

MARY

(confused)

What?. . .

DR. LANDEN

Nothing, Mrs. Johnson. We’re still waiting for the morphine.

MARY

Thought you had it. . .

DR. LANDEN

Not yet.

(NURSE ANNE unhooks the empty bag and quickly walks out of the room.)

(BLACKOUT)

(END OF SCENE)

*

On to Scene 7