Sunday, January 1, 2017

Tosca, Act II

Previous installment: Act I

Act II: Scarpia's private chambers on an upper floor of the Palazzo Farnese. Scarpia is sitting at the table and eating dinner, waiting impatiently for something to happen. It feels like he's been waiting forever, really. Well, maybe not exactly forever; maybe just a little over three years. And maybe you're about to say that I make a version of this joke every goddamn time I go a long time between posts but FUCK YOU MAYBE I HAVEN'T DONE THIS IN A WHILE AND MAYBE I'M A LITTLE BIT RUSTY, OKAY.

The Readers: Jesus. Someone's feeling insecure.

[I have no idea what you mean. And also shut up.]

Scarpia: You know what this opera needs? A good falconry metaphor.

The Audience: Those are hard to come by these days. Proceed!

Scarpia: So Tosca is like a falcon and my men are like dogs and by now she should have led them to wherever Cavaradossi is hiding Angelotti! I don't really know what animals those two would be in this metaphor, though. Rabbits? Foxes?

The Audience: Ummmm actually that's technically a simile and not a metaphor because you said "like".

Scarpia: Ummmm actually I could have you all LITERALLY KILLED so sure, keep talking back. See how that works out for you.

The Audience: ...

Crickets: [chirp chirp]

Scarpia: Damn straight.

[He rings a bell. Sciarrone comes running like his life depends on it, because let's face it — it probably does.]

Scarpia: Has Tosca arrived to sing for the cantata yet?

Sciarrone: We've sent someone to look for her.

[At Scarpia's order, Sciarrone opens the window. Music can be heard from the courtyard below.]

Scarpia: Well, the orchestra is still killing time, so she's obviously not here yet. [He scribbles a note.] Wait for her at the entrance and give her this when she arrives.

[Sciarrone takes the note and leaves. Scarpia sits back down at the dinner table and sings about his lust, and you just KNOW that under the table he's jerking himself into a murder-frenzy.]

The Audience: oh god no

Scarpia: oh god YES

My Parents: [are incredibly disappointed that their son has grown into such a crass human being]

Scarpia: I can't wait to bargain the painter's life for sex with his girlfriend! I'm automatically attracted to beautiful women. I just start kissing them. I don't even wait. It's like a magnet. And when you're a baron, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab them by the pussy.

The Entire Internet: TOO SOON

Scarpia: Anyway, I like my women like I like my wine: strong, full-bodied, and locked in a cellar with lots of others so I can choose one according to my mood.

The Audience: You are the actual worst.

[Sciarrone enters.]

Sciarrone: Sir, I — oh. Oh god. Oh no.

Scarpia: HAVEN'T YOU EVER HEARD OF KNOCKING

Sciarrone: [averting his eyes] Yeah, I'm just gonna give you a couple minutes to finish up and also I need to binge-drink until the past thirty seconds are erased from my brain forever.

Scarpia: No need to leave; you ruined it anyway.

Sciarrone: [shudder]

Scarpia: You were saying something?

Sciarrone: Right. Uhhh. Spoletta is back. Thought you should know.

Scarpia: Excellent! Send him in.

[Sciarrone opens the door and lets Spoletta in.]

Sciarrone: [whispering] I hope you've got good news, man. I just cock-blocked the boss.

Spoletta: Fuuuuuuck.

Scarpia: Spoletta! How was the stalking?

Spoletta: It went really well in the sense that I followed Tosca to Cavaradossi's secret love-shack and burst in as soon as she left and searched the whole place...

Scarpia: Awesome! So where's our escaped convict?

Spoletta: ... buuuuuuut it went somewhat less well in the sense that Angelotti was nowhere to be found.

Scarpia: YOU SHIT-EATING SNAKE-SNOUTED MOTHERFUCKER I WILL LITERALLY KILL YOU

Spoletta: JESUS CHRIST CALM DOWN I ALSO ARRESTED THE PAINTER BECAUSE HE WAS BEING HELLA SMUG AND OBVIOUSLY KNEW WHERE ANGELOTTI WAS HIDING

Scarpia: Oh. Good. Send him in, then. [to Sciarrone] And you — go fetch the torture guy. And probably the judge too, I guess.

The Audience: Right, because you give so many shits about due process.

[The flunkies leave and return a moment later with Cavaradossi, the judge, and the torture guy.]

Torture Guy: I have a name, you know.

The Audience: Do you have any lines?

Torture Guy: No, but —

The Audience: And do you do any actual onstage torturing?

Torture Guy: No, but —

The Audience: Then yeah, we really don't care.

Torture Guy: [mumbling sadly] ... but my name's Roberti.

The Audience: We can't hear you byyyyyyyyyye

Cavaradossi: Could you tell your goons to be more careful? I have delicate painter-hands and I need them in working order.

Scarpia: Don't push your luck, pretty-boy. Sit down.

Cavaradossi: I think I'd rather stand.

Scarpia: Don't be a dick, man. I'm trying to give this whole ugly affair a veneer of respectability, okay? So just. Sit. Down.

Cavaradossi: No thanks, I'm good.

Scarpia: SIT THE FUCK DOWN

Cavaradossi: I DON'T WANNA

Scarpia: FINE BUT THE CHAIRS ARE SUPER CUSHY SO IT'S YOUR LOSS

[From the courtyard, Tosca can be heard singing the cantata.]

Scarpia: So, are you aware —

Cavaradossi: SHHH I'M TRYING TO LISTEN TO MY GIRLFRIEND

Scarpia: You haven't yet realized how thoroughly fucked you are, have you.

Cavaradossi: What was that?

Scarpia: Oh, nothing. Just clearing my throat. Aaaaanyway, did you know about the prison break yesterday?

Cavaradossi: This is the first time I'm hearing about it! I didn't even know there was a prison nearby!

Scarpia: Really? Because I have men who say you sheltered and fed the escaped prisoner and took him to your country house.

Cavaradossi: And who's saying that, exactly?

Scarpia: Top. Men.

Cavaradossi: Look, these charges are bullshit and your spies didn't find anything when they searched my house.

Scarpia: That just proves you're really good at hiding people.

Cavaradossi: What? That's not how evidence works.

Scarpia: But that is how brutal authoritarian rule works. Guess which one is more important right now!

Spoletta: ALSO HE LAUGHED AT ME WHEN I WAS QUESTIONING HIM

Scarpia: See? More evidence you're lying.

Spoletta: It's not really evidence; it just hurt my feelings.

Cavaradossi: [laughing] I don't give two shits about your feelings, you jack-booted thug!

Scarpia: Stop laughing! [menacingly] This is a place for tears.

Spoletta: [sniffling] Well, it is now.

Scarpia: WHERE IS ANGELOTTI

Cavaradossi: I DON'T KNOW

Scarpia: DID YOU GIVE HIM FOOD

Cavaradossi: I SURE DIDN'T

Scarpia: DID YOU TAKE HIM TO YOUR LOVE SHACK

Cavaradossi: I DEFINITELY DID NOT TAKE HIM TO THE PALAZZO DI CAZZO

Scarpia: DID YOU — wait, is that seriously what you call it?

Cavaradossi: ... it was Tosca's idea.

The Audience: Sure it was.

Scarpia: Okay but let's be real for a second. I'm about to torture the ever-loving fuck out of you, so this would be a great time to confess and save yourself a butt-load of pain.

The Audience: Uhhh... does he mean "butt-load" in a colloquial sense, or is that something we should be taking literally?

Torture Guy: Oh, I would tell you, but you guys are dicks.

The Audience: Boooo.

Scarpia: So is there anything you'd like to share with me?

Cavaradossi: Nope.

Scarpia: Nothing at all?

Cavaradossi: Noooooooope.

Spoletta: JUST TORTURE HIM ALREADY HE'S SUCH A JERK

[Tosca rushes in and embraces Cavaradossi.]

Scarpia: Ugh, finally. I thought that cantata was never gonna end.

Tosca: MARIO WHAT THE FUCK WHY ARE YOU ARRESTED

Cavaradossi: [whispering to her] Don't say shit about what you saw at the Palazzo di Cazzo or they'll kill my friend and execute me for treason.

Tosca: [whispering back] Okay, but can we stop calling it that? It's kinda gross.

The Audience: HAAAAA WE KNEW YOU WERE LYING

Cavaradossi: Yeah, I'm not a great liar. Or actor, for that matter.

Puccini: Foreshadowing!

The Audience: Go away.

Scarpia: MARIO CAVARADOSSI NOW THAT YOUR GIRLFRIEND IS HERE YOU CAN BEGIN YOUR TESTIMONY UNDER EXTREME DURESS

[Sciarrone opens a door, revealing Scarpia's hidden torture chamber. Cavaradossi is dragged inside, followed by Sciarrone, the judge, and Roberti the Torture Guy. Spoletta shuts the door behind them and stands guard.]

Scarpia: [to Tosca] And now that that's out of the way, we can have a nice little chat like best girlfriends! You know, just drink skim lattes and gab about boys and whether or not those boys are secretly harboring fugitives from justice!

Tosca: That seems awfully specific.

Scarpia: Is that not a common topic of conversation? Huh. On another note entirely and for no reason whatsoever, how did it go earlier when you stormed off to find Cavaradossi? Did you find him with the Marchesa Attavanti, or maybe with anyone else who shares her name and bloodline?

Tosca: Nope. He was alone.

Scarpia: Are you sure?

Tosca: Positive. Turns out I was just being crazy and jealous!

Scarpia: Don't forget easily manipulated!

Tosca: Yeah, well, you're never gonna manipulate me again.

Scarpia: It's adorable that you think that.

Tosca: I mean it. You're not getting anything out of me.

Scarpia: If you want your boyfriend back in one piece, you might want to rethink that last statement.

Tosca: WAIT WHAT ARE YOU DOING TO HIM IN THERE

The Audience: WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU THINK THEY'RE DOING TO HIM IN THERE

Scarpia: They're not playing backgammon, that's for damn sure.

Torture Guy: [offstage] Yeah — we're playing Trivial Pursuit!

Cavaradossi: [offstage] SOMEONE HELP ME I KEEP LANDING ON SPORTS AND LEISURE

Tosca: NOOOO THAT'S THE WORST CATEGORY

Scarpia: TELL ME WHAT I WANT TO KNOW OR THEY'LL MAKE HIM PLAY MONOPOLY NEXT

Tosca: SWEET JESUS THAT'S GONNA TAKE FOREVER

Scarpia: AND THEY WON'T EVEN LET HIM HAVE ONE OF THE COOL PIECES — HE'LL HAVE TO BE THE THIMBLE OR SOME BULLSHIT LIKE THAT

Tosca: I'LL TELL YOU ANYTHING YOU WANT TO KNOW JUST MAKE IT STOP

Scarpia: [calling through the door] SCIARRONE STOP

Sciarrone: [poking his head out] But I was just about to get the blue wedge!

Scarpia: Am I having a stroke, or did you just talk back to me?

[Sciarrone whimpers and goes back inside.]

Tosca: Can I see him?

Scarpia: No. Tell me what I want to know.

Tosca: MARIO ARE YOU OKAY

Cavaradossi: [offstage] YEAH AND I CAN HANDLE THE SHITTY BOARD GAMES FOR A WHILE SO KEEP YOUR GIANT DIVA MOUTH SHUT FOR FUCK'S SAKE

Tosca: Rude. [turning back to Scarpia] I don't know anything. So there.

Scarpia: Fine, have it your way. START TORTURING HIM AGAIN

Sciarrone: [offstage] yaaaaay blue wedge

Tosca: HOW COULD YOU DO THIS YOU MONSTER

Scarpia: They can stop any time you want, you know. All you have to do is betray your principles and your lover!

The Audience: Oh, is that all.

Tosca: But I don't knoooowwwww anythiiiiiiiiiing

Scarpia: Christ, you're like a broken record. SCIARRONE OPEN THE DOOR SO SHE CAN HEAR HIS TORMENT BETTER

[Sciarrone complies.]

Torture Guy: [offstage] What was the exact weight in centigrams of the first person ever to win a silver medal at the Olympics?

Cavaradossi: [offstage] HOW WOULD ANYONE EVER KNOW THAT

Tosca: [incoherent sobbing]

Cavaradossi: [offstage] FUCK THIS GAME AND FUCK YOU TOO I'M NOT PLAYING ANYMORE

Sciarrone: [offstage] SCARPIAAAA HE KICKED OVER THE BOARD AND NOW THERE ARE PIECES EVERYWHERE

Scarpia: Oh, for the love of — JUST PUT HIM IN THE BRAIN-STABBY-DOOHICKEY ALREADY

Cavaradossi: [offstage] DO YOUR WORST YOU FASCIST SCUM I'M SURE I CAN TAKE WHATEVER YOU — OH SWEET MERCIFUL CHRIST THAT HURTS BAD

Tosca: NOOOOO okay fine Angelotti is hiding in the well in the garden.

Scarpia: It took you long enough. ROBERTI YOU CAN STOP NOW

Torture Guy: [offstage] Aw, it was just getting fun.

Sciarrone: [opening the door again] Only thirty seconds of actual torture and he's already passed out. What a wuss.

Tosca: Let me see him!

[At an order from Scarpia, Cavaradossi is dragged in and deposited at Tosca's feet. Sciarrone, the judge, and Torture Guy all leave, but Spoletta stays behind.]

Tosca: ewwwwwww he's all bloody and gross now

Cavaradossi: [regaining consciousness] ... Tosca? Is that you? Please hold me; I need to be comforted.

Tosca: I love you and everything but this dress is hella expensive and I don't want to ruin it.

Cavaradossi: [coughing up blood] Fair enough. You didn't tell them anything, though, right?

Tosca: Of course not! That would have been really shitty and I would never, ever —

Scarpia: HEY SPOLETTA REMEMBER WHEN TOSCA TOLD US THAT ANGELOTTI WAS HIDING IN THE WELL

Spoletta: I SURE DO AND NOW I'M GONNA GO ARREST HIM

[He runs out.]

Tosca: ... goddammit.

Cavaradossi: WHAT THE HELL TOSCA WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT

Tosca: I WAS TRYING TO SAVE YOU FROM TORTURE

Cavaradossi: I WAS DOING FINE UNTIL THEY STARTED STABBING ME WITH POINTY OBJECTS

[Sciarrone rushes in.]

Sciarrone: YOUR EXCELLENCY THERE'S SOME TERRIBLE NEWS REGARDING OUR STUNNING VICTORY AT MARENGO

Scarpia: What about it?

Sciarrone: TURNS OUT IT WAS ACTUALLY A STUNNING DEFEAT AND BONAPARTE KICKED THE SHIT OUT OF MELAS

[The news sends Scarpia into a rage and turns Cavaradossi into the Kool-Aid Man.]

Cavaradossi: [jumping up] OH YEEEEEAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH

Tosca: [tugging on his sleeve] Hey, Mario, maaaaaybe it's not the best time for —

Cavaradossi: FUCK YOU SCARPIA YOU UTTER SHITBAG YOUR DAYS ARE NUMBERED

Tosca: — doing exactly what you just did. You know this guy still controls whether you live or die, right?

Cavaradossi: RAISE A GLASS TO FREEDOM

The Audience: aaaaayyyyyyyyy

Scarpia: Something you will never see again... [indicating Tosca] ... no matter what she tells you.

[Yeah, there was no way this script wasn't going to include a Hamilton reference. You all really should have seen that coming.]

Scarpia: Well, now that that little outburst is finished, I can have you officially arrested and executed as an enemy of the state. Thanks for making my job easier!

Cavaradossi: But... but... freedom!

Scarpia: Look out the window. Do you see Napoleon's army here to rescue you?

Cavaradossi: No... ?

Scarpia: Then I can still do whatever the fuck I want, and that includes hanging you. In short: ARRIVEDERCI, FELICIA

[Cavaradossi is dragged away. Tosca goes to follow, but Scarpia cuts her off.]

Scarpia: Not you. You get to watch me eat my dinner.

Tosca: You have to saaaaave hiiiiiiim

Scarpia: I don't have to do shit. You, on the other hand... [He sits back down at the table and resumes eating.]

Tosca: Fine. How much money do you want?

Scarpia: That's adorable. [gesturing at their surroundings] Does it look like I need money?

Tosca: Well, what do you want instead?

[Scarpia wiggles his eyebrows suggestively.]

Tosca: Oh, for fuck's sake.

Scarpia: I mean, I always knew you were a fox. But seeing you tonight, full of anguish for your lover and utter hatred for me? Turns out that reeeeeally gets me going.

Tosca: Just so we're on the same page, I would literally rather jump out this window —

Puccini: Also foreshadowing!

Tosca: — and plummet to my certain death than have sex with you.

Scarpia: God, I love it when you talk dirty.

Tosca: That's not — we're not gonna — GAHHH WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS TO ME

Scarpia: Because you're a strong, outspoken woman and I feel entitled to violate your body so I can claim some sort of sick ownership of you, thereby stripping you of your agency? And I'm also utterly undeterred — nay, even encouraged — by your lack of consent?

Tosca: That's the worst thing I've ever heard.

Women in the Audience: Oh, honey. On the internet, we call that a Tuesday.

Tosca: Christ. Really?

Women in the Audience: And also Wednesday. And Thursday. And most other days.

Scarpia: So what's it gonna be, Sugar-tits?

[He advances on her and she retreats behind the couch.]

Tosca: DON'T FUCKING TOUCH ME

Scarpia: I CAN'T WAIT TO FEEL YOUR SPASMS OF PASSION OR HATRED OR EPILEPSY OR WHATEVER

Tosca: YOU ARE THE GROSSEST HUMAN EVER

Scarpia: WELL THE GROSSEST HUMAN EVER ALSO HAS THE POWER TO STOP YOUR LOVER'S HANGING SO MAYBE YOU SHOULD GET OVER IT

[Tosca collapses on the couch in despair.]

Tosca: DEAR JESUS WHY ARE YOU LETTING THIS HAPPEN TO ME I'M JUST AN ARTIST AND I'VE NEVER HURT ANYONE EVER

Jesus: [from Heaven] Welllllll the script for Act I heavily implied you're the earthly vessel for some kind of Lovecraftian hellbeast, and I'm not down with tentacled horrors from dimensions unknown.

Cthulhu: [from the nightmare corpse-city of R'lyeh] IS THAT WHY YOU HAVEN'T ACCEPTED MY FRIEND REQUEST

Jesus: In a word: yes.

Cthulhu: WELL FHTAGN YOU AND FHTAGN YOUR MOTHER TOO

Jesus: YOU LEAVE MARY OUT OF THIS

Tosca: Uhhhh... that was weird. [to Scarpia] Look, I'm begging you. Don't make me do this.

Scarpia: I'm not asking that much — a long, happy life with Cavaradossi in exchange for an instant with me.

The Audience: An instant? Really?

Scarpia: IT'S A MORE COMMON PROBLEM THAN YOU MIGHT THINK AND ALSO SHUT UP

[Spoletta rushes in.]

Scarpia: Good God, I need to put a lock on that door.

Spoletta: Sooooooo we found Angelotti but he committed suicide before we could capture him.

Scarpia: Well, just hang his corpse from the scaffold. And is everything ready for Cavaradossi?

Spoletta: It sure is! We've even rigged it to make sure his neck won't snap from the drop, so he'll just have a slow, painful death by strangling!

Tosca: fuuuuuuuck

Scarpia: Great! Then I'll let you go and execute him in five... four... three... two...

Tosca: OKAY FINE I'LL DO IT

Scarpia: [unbuttoning his pants] Awwwwwwww yeeeeeeeeaaaaahhhhh

Tosca: Not yet. First, you let Mario go.

Scarpia: Hold on now; I can't just go around pardoning people willy-nilly.

The Audience: What happened to being able to do whatever the fuck you want?

Scarpia: Hush. Just to keep up appearances, we'll have to stage a fake execution. [to Spoletta] Remember how we did that fake firing squad for Count Palmieri? Do it like that.

Spoletta: Palmieri? Pretty sure we actually shot that guy.

Scarpia: [gritting his teeth] No, you must be thinking of that guy Fieri, because we definitely let Palmieri go, alive and un-bullet-riddled.

Spoletta: No, I distinctly remember that we drowned Fieri in his own terrible sauce as an ironic punishment. Palmieri was the one we shot —

[He sees Scarpia making wild "shut up, you jackass" gestures at him from behind Tosca's back.]

Spoletta: — with fake bullets at a fake execution because the whole thing was fake. I remember now!

The Audience: Smooth.

Scarpia: So now that that's settled, you should probably go make the arrangements.

Spoletta: That sounds like a great idea! I'm gonna leave before I say anything else incriminating.

Tosca: What?

Scarpia: [pushing Spoletta out the door] Nothing! He said nothing. [dropping his pants] So about that hate-sex...

Tosca: Not so fast! I need official, written assurance that Mario and I will be able to leave the country unmolested.

The Audience: Uh... phrasing.

Scarpia: Is my word not good enough?

Tosca: Yeah, I just don't trust you for some reason. Maybe it's the secret police. Or the torture. Or the sexual blackmail.

Scarpia: That's fair. [sitting down at his writing desk] Which route do you want to take?

Tosca: The shortest.

Scarpia: Civitavecchia it is!

[He starts to write while Tosca looks on in shame and disgust.]

Scarpia: [humming to himself] doot doot de doo, gonna go down to Bone Town once this letter is finiiiiished

[While Scarpia is distracted, Tosca notices a knife on the dinner table. She sidles over, picks it up, and hides it behind her back.]

Scarpia: Aaaaaaaand done! [getting up] Allow me to slip into something a little more comfortable.

Tosca: ... you mean my vagina, don't you.

Scarpia: I sure do! YOU'RE MINE AT LAST

[He rushes toward her and she stabs him right in the fucking chest.]

Tosca: LOL NOPE

Scarpia: HOLY FUCKING CHRIST SOMEONE HELP ME

Tosca: ARE YOU DROWNING IN YOUR OWN BLOOD YET YOU SON OF A BITCH

Scarpia: help... me...

Tosca: SAY MY NAME MOTHERFUCKER

Scarpia: [gurgling sounds]

The Audience: Holy shit. This opera is metal as fuck.

Tosca: YEAH YOU DON'T FUCK WITH FLORIA TOSCA BECAUSE — because... you.....

[Tosca's eyes turn completely black. Her jaw opens wide — far too wide for a human — and what Scarpia sees lurking inside her body is too horrific to comprehend. What remains of his mind is irreparably shattered. The creature feeds on his madness, leaving his rapidly exsanguinating body little more than a withered husk. When death finally overtakes him, it is a merciful release.]

Puccini: WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK THAT'S NOT WHAT HAPPENS

[But wouldn't it be awesome if it did?]

Puccini: No. Now tell it right, goddammit.

[Fiiiiiine.]

Tosca: [standing over Scarpia's corpse] I can't believe everyone was so afraid of this ass-clown. All it took to kill him was one teensy little stab in the heart!

[She pries the letter of safe passage from Scarpia's cold, dead fingers.]

The Audience: Hey, didn't you make a big deal in Act I about being super religious?

Tosca: Yeah? So?

The Audience: ... thou shalt not kill?

Tosca: Shiiiiiiiit

[End of Act II.]

4 comments:

  1. Now with dick jokes in 100% more languages!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was particularly proud of Palazzo di Cazzo. I should probably brush up on my coarse German and French for upcoming posts...

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  2. Charlie, I am SOOOOOOOO glad you are back!!!!! I have missed this so damn much!!! keep'em coming, please keep'em coming!! oh, and yes, TOO SOON!! but very well played!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I only recently found your Works after looking for my Script for Oklahoma online, But I can say Happily will continue reading as long as you keep writing for Out Enjoyment.

    ReplyDelete