1 BRAVE LITTLE TAILOR A one-act comedy by Randy Wyatt This script is for evaluation only. It may not be printed, photocopied or distributed digitally under any circumstances. Possession of this file does not grant the right to perform this play or any portion of it, or to use it for classroom study
2 Brave Little Tailor 2001 Randy Wyatt All rights reserved. ISBN Caution: This play is fully protected under the copyright laws of the United States of America, Canada, the British Commonwealth and all other countries of the copyright union and is subject to royalty for all performances including but not limited to professional, amateur, charity and classroom whether admission is charged or presented free of charge. Reservation of Rights: This play is the property of the author and all rights for its use are strictly reserved and must be licensed by his representative, YouthPLAYS. This prohibition of unauthorized professional and amateur stage presentations extends also to motion pictures, recitation, lecturing, public reading, radio broadcasting, television, video and the rights of adaptation or translation into non-english languages. Performance Licensing and Royalty Payments: Amateur and stock performance rights are administered exclusively by YouthPLAYS. No amateur, stock or educational theatre groups or individuals may perform this play without securing authorization and royalty arrangements in advance from YouthPLAYS. Required royalty fees for performing this play are available online at Royalty fees are subject to change without notice. Required royalties must be paid each time this play is performed and may not be transferred to any other performance entity. All licensing requests and inquiries should be addressed to YouthPLAYS. Author Credit: All groups or individuals receiving permission to produce this play must give the author(s) credit in any and all advertisement and publicity relating to the production of this play. The author's billing must appear directly below the title on a separate line with no other accompanying written matter. The name of the author(s) must be at least 50% as large as the title of the play. No person or entity may receive larger or more prominent credit than that which is given to the author(s) and the name of the author(s) may not be abbreviated or otherwise altered from the form in which it appears in this Play. Publisher Attribution: All programs, advertisements, flyers or other printed material must include the following notice: Produced by special arrangement with YouthPLAYS ( Prohibition of Unauthorized Copying: Any unauthorized copying of this book or excerpts from this book, whether by photocopying, scanning, video recording or any other means, is strictly prohibited by law. This book may only be copied by licensed productions with the purchase of a photocopy license, or with explicit permission from YouthPLAYS. Trade Marks, Public Figures & Musical Works: This play may contain references to brand names or public figures. All references are intended only as parody or other legal means of expression. This play may also contain suggestions for the performance of a musical work (either in part or in whole). YouthPLAYS has not obtained performing rights of these works unless explicitly noted. The direction of such works is only a playwright's suggestion, and the play producer should obtain such permissions on their own. The website for the U.S. copyright office is
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4 CAST OF CHARACTERS CHRIS, a young boy or girl. STORYTELLER, mysterious man or woman. KEARA, a cat. An ELF KNIGHT GIANT KING QUEEN PRINCESS WILHEMINA (Or Prince William) VICTOR, a dragon. GREGOR, a dragon. UNICORN SWAMP MONSTER MERCHANTS/SPIRITS/TREES The show has featured up to 35 actors before. DOUBLING SUGGESTIONS FOR EIGHT ACTORS CHRIS SPIRIT/KEARA SPIRIT/ELF/MERCHANT/KNIGHT STORYTELLER/MERCHANT/SWAMP MONSTER SPIRIT/MERCHANT/KING/VICTOR SPIRIT/MERCHANT/QUEEN SPIRIT/MERCHANT/PRINCESS/UNICORN SPIRIT/MERCHANT/GIANT/GREGOR
5 SETTING Grandmother's Attic, filled with junk. AUTHOR'S NOTE All of the various locales and costumes in the play are to be made from the "junk" found in Grandmother's attic. Much of the charm of the show comes from the innovation of using objects in new and imaginative ways.
6 6 Randy Wyatt (Grandma's attic. It is full of objects, big and small, some covered by blankets. A door creaks open from below. CHRIS appears with a flashlight. He feels his way in the dark, tripping over things to find a light switch. He turns it on and looks around. He smiles at the audience.) CHRIS: I have a secret. Shhhh. No one knows it but me. Shhhhh. Up here in my Grandmother's attic. Look. Boxes and games, dresses, and frames, cases and pictures and charms. There's a magic up here if you know where to look. And I do. Yes I do. Watch and learn. (He produces an ocarina from around his neck. He blows a sequence of notes. He looks around and frowns. He blows again, adding a flourish at the end. Beat. Then items begin to move and tremble as if they are alive. The ELVES and SPIRITS pop up from all around, giggling, singing and dancing. The largest of them all appears, a tall figure in a gray cloak. He [or she] holds up his hands and the SPIRITS and ELVES stop where they are and listen.) STORYTELLER: (Taking the ocarina from him and wearing it:) The song is played and thus we appear. The Storyteller speaks. Who calls us here? CHRIS: I do. Uh, Christopher. My name is Christopher. A SPIRIT: Who told you about us? ANOTHER SPIRIT: How did you know? BOTH: The song that makes the spirits show? CHRIS: My grandmother hums that tune while she rolls out the dough for her sweetbread. KEARA: Christopher. We are here. Come from beyond the mists and the moon. Come from our far-away land by your flutinous tune. What do you wish from us?
7 Brave Little Tailor 7 CHRIS: Oh, please. If you would she said that you would tell me a story! (The Elves/Spirits all giggle and repeat "Tell me a story! Tell me a story!" The Storyteller holds up his hand to quiet them.) STORYTELLER: A story. Hmmmm. This I could do. (Pause.) But we're the ones who have traveled from so far away. I say you should tell us a story! (Elves/Spirits laugh and agree, singing, "Tell US a story!") CHRIS: But...but I don't know any...stories. STORYTELLER: Everyone knows a story. CHRIS: But I don't. I'm just a little boy. You are the storyteller. You have lived in the beautiful lands and far-away places. You have seen so much and have so much to tell. STORYTELLER: Ah, but even the storytellers need to hear a story now and then. CHRIS: I don't know...i don't know how...to tell a story. STORYTELLER: (Looking closely at Chris:) Now THAT is more likely the truth. But of course I shall help you. (Snaps:) Keara shall be your helper. (Keara, a graceful spirit in pink and white, bows low.) She shall enter the story with you. CHRIS: Enter the story? STORYTELLER: Yes. The story shall take place here! CHRIS: Here?! In my grandmother's attic? STORYTELLER: (Grandly:) Yes! CHRIS: It won't be much of a story then. STORYTELLER: Ah, how wrong you are, my Christopher. You are about to see just how wrong you are.
8 8 Randy Wyatt Spirits and elves! Come gather round! Quiet now! Listen! Make not a sound! The Storyteller spins his strange story for you. Hush! Listen until it is through. (Elves and Spirits hush one another. The Storyteller closes his eyes and bows his head, which some of the Elves and Spirits mimic. Then he begins to hum one solid note. The Spirits and Elves join in one by one, harmonizing with him, improvising themes. The Storyteller spreads his arms and the Spirits take up their silken scarves or ribbons, waving them in the air as if weaving magic. Chris is amazed. The Elves begin to move the various boxes and attic paraphernalia into a simple stage set of the Tailor's home. The humming becomes louder, and the Spirits dance back and forth across the stage, enveloping Chris in their magic. The humming crescendos to a climax, at which point the Storyteller thunders:) ONCE upon a time. (The Spirits vanish. Chris is standing on top of a table in the Tailor's shop. There is a plate with a heel of bread on it, and a simple cup. The "room" is rather bare. Keara is curled up in a cat-like pose in front of the chair, faced away from the audience.) CHRIS: Where...am I? STORYTELLER: On top of your table. Tsk. Such manners. The floor is for standing on. Come down from there. (Chris clumsily comes down from the table not seeing Keara. He steps on her "tail" and she reacts accordingly.) KEARA: MMMEEOOOWWRRR!!! CHRIS: Oh, I am sorry! KEARA: That was my tail you stepped on! CHRIS: I am so sorry...your tail?
9 Brave Little Tailor 9 STORYTELLER: Of course. Keara is playing the part of your faithful cat in this story. CHRIS: I have a cat? Good! I like cats. KEARA: Well, good. Now that you know you like me, you can feed me. (Rubs up against Chris:) I'm hungrrry. CHRIS: I...don't have any food. I don't even know... KEARA: Yes, you do. (Hopping up on the table:) Here. You're keeping it all to yourself. CHRIS: Oh. Only that bit of dry bread. Is that all... KEARA: (Snooping about:) No milk or fish, though. You need to go shopping. CHRIS: But I have no money! KEARA: Well, then earn some. CHRIS: And how should I do that? KEARA: Tailor something. After all, you are the tailor. CHRIS: I am the what? STORYTELLER: The tailor. You are the hero of our story. The brave little tailor. CHRIS: Well, I don't feel brave. And I don't feel like a tailor whatever that is. STORYTELLER: A tailor is someone who mends and sews clothing. KEARA: For humans. CHRIS: Oh. But I don't know how to sew anything. STORYTELLER: Try.
10 10 Randy Wyatt (Chris slowly goes to the worktable and picks up a length of cloth. He holds up a needle and makes several half-hearted attempts to do something with it.) CHRIS: I can't. STORYTELLER: Close your eyes and try. (Chris, puzzled, does so. As he does, Elves come from all directions, take the cloth from his hands and replace it with a fishing hat. Chris opens his eyes as soon as the Elves disappear again.) Not bad. Your control could use a little work. CHRIS: Wow! Did I do that? KEARA: Of course you did! You're a tailor! CHRIS: But no one will buy a fishing hat... (There is a knock on the door.) Someone's here! Hello? (Chris answers the door. It is an ELF in a poor disguise.) ELF: (Talking quickly:) Ah, my good little tailor! I am going on a long journey for pleasure, you understand, a vacation and I was wondering if you might by chance have a sturdy hat, which I could buy. CHRIS: (Offering hat:) Err...why, um...yes...right here... ELF: Why, this is perfect! Yes, indeedy, yes, indeedy, perfect, perfect, perfect! Absolutely what I had in mind. And what craftsmanship! You shall be the talk of the town here, I can tell you! Here is a bag of gold for your trouble. (He hands Chris a bag of gold.) Thank you and good day to you!
11 Brave Little Tailor 11 (The Elf exits.) CHRIS: Well. THAT was easier than I thought! STORYTELLER: Good things often happen to the heroes in stories. CHRIS: Well, then I think I'll like being the hero! KEARA: Excuse me, Mr. Hero, could you buy your faithful cat some supper now? CHRIS: Oh, yes, of course. Um, where will I do that? KEARA: Why, down at the bazaar, of course! (The Storyteller waves his hands, and Elves/Spirits dressed up as MERCHANTS begin to wander the stage, selling their wares. They may go into the audience.) MERCHANT #1: Hot buttermilk bread for sale! Get your hot buttermilk bread! MERCHANT #2: Cheeses! Fine cheeses for the asking! MERCHANT #3: Jewelry! Baubles! Fineries aplenty! MERCHANT #4: Fish! Fresh fish for sale! KEARA: Oooh, merowr! Fish! A feline feast for me! Whoo hoo! Over here, tailor! (Chris buys a fish for Keara as more Merchants try to sell things to audience members.) MERCHANT #5: Apples! Savory juicy apples here! MERCHANT #6: Dishware! Imported from exotic ports of call! MERCHANT #7: Candies and chocolates! chocolates! MERCHANT #8: Spices! Fine jellies! Candies and
12 12 Randy Wyatt (The Merchants' actions become less distracting as the action again focuses on Chris and Keara.) CHRIS: Did one of them just say "jelly"? KEARA: I think so. Yes, that one over there. CHRIS: My bit of bread sure would be much tastier with some jelly on it. KEARA: By all means, then, don't let her get away! (They catch up with the jelly merchant.) CHRIS: How much for a pound of your fine jelly? MERCHANT #8: It is imported, sir. From a far away land. CHRIS: Wonderful. How much is... MERCHANT #8: You have never tasted such miraculous jelly. Rich enough for a prince, sir! CHRIS: Er, yes. How... MERCHANT #8: Sweet enough for the king himself! even a god! CHRIS: How much is it? MERCHANT #8: Only eight gold pieces per pound, sir. For KEARA: For jelly that expensive, it had better sing you a song! Come, tailor, we... CHRIS: I will buy one-fourth of a pound. MERCHANT #8: (Aghast:) One fourth of a pound! CHRIS: Yes. That's all I need. (She looks at him with distaste, then measures out a very small amount of jelly and gives it to him.) Thank you, my good woman. Here are two gold pieces. Keep the change.
13 Brave Little Tailor 13 (Chris turns to go back home, with Keara following.) MERCHANT #8: Keep the change indeed! Imbecile!!! MERCHANT #5: Why do you squawk so? MERCHANT #3: Was it a thief? Cheapskate!!! MERCHANT #8: A thief! It might as well have been! That strange little man bought one-fourth of a jar of jelly! MERCHANT #6: Only a fourth? MERCHANT #1: Peculiar indeed! MERCHANT #2: Strange little man! MERCHANT #7: Funny little tailor! ALL MERCHANTS: Who does he think he is? (All the Merchants exit, grumbling. Chris and Keara are back in the shop. Keara plays with her fish in the corner, while Chris settles down to eat his bread.) CHRIS: A bit of jelly for my bread! What a breakfast for me! KEARA: A dish of milk and a fish's head! What a banquet for me! (Chris begins to spread the jelly on the bread while Keara eats. As Chris starts to take a bite, he hears a BUZZING made by a HELPER offstage. He looks up.) CHRIS: Um, Keara...have you noticed the flies in here before? KEARA: I've never been here before. This is your story. CHRIS: Oh, right. (More buzzing is heard. Chris starts waving the air in an effort to shoo them away.) Well, there are a lot of them.
14 14 Randy Wyatt KEARA: And they all seem to want your jelly. CHRIS: Shoo! Go away, flies! This jelly is mine! Shoo! (His movements get more vigorous, then he begins to use his hat to wave them away. The buzzing becomes louder. Finally, Chris slams the hat down on the table and the buzzing stops. Chris opens one eye.) Did I get them? KEARA: I don't hear anything. (She comes over to inspect the damage.) Well, well, WELL looks like you did. You killed them all in one blow! All (Counts them:) SEVEN of them! CHRIS: It was a good shot. KEARA: Very impressive. CHRIS: Thanks, I guess. KEARA: You are amazing! CHRIS: Well, I wouldn't go THAT far... KEARA: (Rhapsodizing:) You killed SEVEN in ONE BLOW! If that isn't astounding, I don't know the meaning of the word. CHRIS: Yes, but...they were only flies! KEARA: (Oblivious to Chris:) Seven in one blow! The world must hear of this how famous you will be! CHRIS: Wait don't tell me this is part of the story, right? KEARA: I know what you should do! You should make yourself a belt with large gold letters that read SEVEN IN ONE BLOW. And you should wear this belt wherever you go, so that the whole world can know of your prowess. CHRIS: What?! That's just silly!
15 Brave Little Tailor 15 (Spirits/Elves run in and dress Chris in just such a belt, then they scurry away.) You know, this sewing stuff is really easy. I could do it in my sleep! KEARA: How brave you look in that belt! CHRIS: I do? No, I don't. KEARA: You look like you could take on a giant! CHRIS: A giant? Now, wait a minute... KEARA: (Enraptured:) You look like you could conquer the world! CHRIS: I think you're getting carried away! KEARA: That's all right. It's time to leave anyway. (She starts walking toward the door.) CHRIS: Leave?! What are you talking about? KEARA: We can't stay here. All of the danger and excitement is out there beyond your front door! We have to go and explore! Seek our fortunes! CHRIS: Why can't we seek our fortunes here in town? seemed nice enough...and I LIKE jelly. KEARA: Who ever heard of seeking one's fortune in one's own town? No, no, no. Besides, all the people in this city think you are strange. CHRIS: They do? KEARA: Yup. They think you are a cheapskate and a fool. CHRIS: But they don't even know me! KEARA: That's the way people are in this town. Come on! Let's go! No time for this we've got places to go and new It
16 16 Randy Wyatt friends to discover! Bring your bread you never know when you may need a little bread. Tally ho and onward! (Keara leads Chris away as the Spirits change the set to a Hillside. When Chris and Keara return, the Spirits are gone. There is a huge rock DL.) CHRIS: Tell me again why I'm doing this? KEARA: Because you never know what life has in store until you go out and... CHRIS: But I don't know what I'm DOING! KEARA: No one does. Every person who has ever lived had to learn what to do and how to live as they went along. Just like you do in this story. CHRIS: I keep forgetting it's only a story. (Suddenly, some GIANT STOMPING is heard offstage.) What was that? KEARA: Relax. It's only part of the story. (Another thump.) CHRIS: (Seeing the Giant:) Holy smokes! something so...big! KEARA: Good thing you're so brave! CHRIS: (Gulp:) Yeah...good thing. I've never seen (The GIANT arrives onstage. He is a lumbering, lovable oaf. He sits down on the rock and makes scratches in the dirt, humming a song to himself, oblivious to Chris and his Keara.) I want to go back to the jelly part of the story I liked that part. KEARA: Stories don't go backwards they can only go forwards! Come on, where's your courage? You're the brave
17 Brave Little Tailor 17 little tailor, remember? Seven in one blow! Come on! Go and talk to him! (Keara pushes Chris towards the Giant.) I'll just...wait here. (Keara hides behind a bush, much to Chris' dismay. The Giant notices Chris at this point.) GIANT: Hey! Who dares walk into my thinking space without my permission? CHRIS: (Trembling:) Um, just little me, and I was just leaving. (Chris turns to go.) KEARA: (Whispering:) You were not! Stay! Say something brave! CHRIS: (To Keara:) YOU come out and say something brave! KEARA: But you're the hero! CHRIS: YOU can be the hero... (He tries to take off the belt, but it's not coming off.) How do you take this dumb thing off anyway? GIANT: (On his feet, bellowing:) Stop making all that noise! Who do you think you are?! KEARA: (In a voice imitating Chris:) I am the brave little tailor! And don't shout so! You'd make any decent person go deaf! CHRIS: (Horrified:) Keara, be quiet! He'll think it's me talking! GIANT: Oho! The insect has a voice! Listen, tiny wretched thing! I am master of this hill and all the land that surrounds it! NO ONE trespasses here without my say-so. Anyone who tries gets squashed flat. I make sure of that.
18 18 Randy Wyatt CHRIS: I see, well, how nice, ha ha ha... I've got to be going now... KEARA: (As Chris:) You don't frighten me, mighty giant! CHRIS: (Frantically, to Keara:) Yes, he does! (To Giant:) Yes, you do! KEARA: I may look tiny but appearances never tell the whole story! Look upon my belt and read the truth about me!!! (Hissing, to Chris:) Turn around! CHRIS: Oh! (Chris turns to face Giant, who lumbers closer to read the belt. It takes him a moment to figure it out reading's not his strong point - but finally he does.) GIANT: "Seven in one blow." (Whistles:) Say, that's mighty amazin' there. CHRIS: Thank you. GIANT: If it's true, that is. You 'spect me to believe that somethin' little like you could wipe out seven men in one blow? On my best day, I could take care of only three at most... CHRIS: (To Keara:) He thinks I killed seven men in one blow. KEARA: Let him think that. CHRIS: But... GIANT: I know what I'll do. I'll put you up to a little test. Let's see if you are worth your salt, as they say. A feat of strength to see if what your belt says is true. (Giant rises and strokes his chin.) What to do? What to do?
19 Brave Little Tailor 19 (He snaps his fingers an idea. He turns and lifts the rock he was sitting on and with a Herculean effort hurls it offstage. We hear a big noise. The impact shakes Chris and Keara.) There. Top that, if you can. KEARA: Oh boy...this is not going to be easy. CHRIS: (Brightly:) I know! My bread! KEARA: What about it? CHRIS: It looks like a rock. I'll make him think it is one. KEARA: That's your good idea? CHRIS: Do you have a better one? KEARA: I hope he is as dumb as he looks... CHRIS: (Pulling out bread, to Giant:) You say "top that"! I can and I will! Watch this!!! (He crumbles the bread in his hands. Keara puts her face in her paws. There is a tense moment while the Giant takes it all in.) GIANT: (Impressed:) Wouldya look at that! He crumbled that rock with only one hand! CHRIS: It worked! I impressed him! KEARA: Good thing he IS as dumb as he looks! (Chris shushes Keara.) GIANT: (Bounding forward:) I misjudged you, I think. You are quite a wonder, little man. Here's my hand. (He shakes Chris' hand and pretty much his whole body.) It's not often that I find an equal. That's one of the downsides of being a giant. 'Course, the smashing stuff now I rather like that. Don't you? CHRIS: Um, sure.
20 20 Randy Wyatt GIANT: Nothing like a good smashing to get yer blood pumpn' early in the morning, me mother used to say. You're all right, little one. Shall we be friends? CHRIS: (Gaining courage:) I'd like that very much, big one. GIANT: (Roaring with laughter:) O ho! HO HO HO! I suppose I am the big one! Since we're friends now, I'll tell you a secret no one knows but meself. I'm going to tell you my name. (He whispers it into Chris' ear.) CHRIS: (Puzzled:) Eldon? GIANT: Eldon the Great! Eldon the Fearful! Eldon the Mighty!! CHRIS: Your name is Eldon. GIANT: Just don't tell anyone. CHRIS: It's a secret safe with me. My name is Chris. GIANT: Hail and well met, Chris the brave! It is good to have met you. (Rises:) I must be going. Where do your travels take you, Chris the Mighty? CHRIS: Um...to seek my fortune. GIANT: Hmmm. Well then, your travels no doubt take you in that direction (Points eastward:) to yon neighboring kingdom. Many a fortune has been found there. CHRIS: (Bowing:) I thank you, Eldon the Powerful. GIANT: God speed, Chris the Fearless. Happy smashing! (He lumbers off.) KEARA: Well. That was...weird. CHRIS: I think I handled that quite well, thank you.
21 Brave Little Tailor 21 KEARA: When you said goodbye to him, you seemed very sure of yourself. Like you really were brave. CHRIS: I do feel a little braver than before. Maybe I AM the brave little tailor! KEARA: (Stopping him:) Shhh! Do you hear that? CHRIS: No. What? KEARA: That...thumping noise. (Chris listens and hears it too. The KNIGHT clambers on from the opposite side. His approach could be accentuated by drumbeats or coconut halves. He pretends to ride a horse and wield a sword. He stops the horse with an "Easy girl!" and he neighs as if the horse had done the same. He dismounts and walks up to the pair slowly. Then in an absurdly loud voice:) KNIGHT: HALT!!!! (This startles the two so much that they fall backward. The Knight laughs ruefully.) Ah, cowards! Cringe before the mighty bellow of the Knight in His Majesty's Service. Snivel and pay homage to he who is obviously so very much greater than you. KEARA: What a blowhard! KNIGHT: I have come to investigate you, as I have watched your approach for some time now. My eagle eye spotted you from afar and suspected your treachery. CHRIS: Treachery?! But we haven't done anything... KNIGHT: Your pleas fall on deaf ears! I have no mercy for traitors to the kingdom! Those who make friends with giants are no friends to the crown. CHRIS: Oh, come now...i KNIGHT: SILENCE!!!
22 22 Randy Wyatt (An overly dramatic pause as the Knight stares at both of them very hard.) I know traitors when I see them. My eyes are trained to see such things. You are my prisoners! Come! I must clap you in irons. (The Knight digs in his pockets and pulls out imaginary chains. He cackles at the length and weight of them. Chris and Keara shrug at each other and offer their hands/paws to be chained. The Knight makes a big production out of chaining them to the horse, which he mounts.) KEARA: Well, this is unusual. CHRIS: But at least we'll get to the kingdom quicker this way. KEARA: We may get to the dungeon quicker this way. KNIGHT: Silence, ruffians! Away, steed! (The procession marches off. The Storyteller appears and with a wave of his hand summons Spirits to transform the stage into the throne room. They all disappear as the threesome return.) Ho there! Steed, halt. (He stops, then neighs for the horse. unchains Keara and Chris.) He dismounts and You will now stand trial in front of the royal court. justice be served. Sweet delicious justice. May (The Knight laughs diabolically and pulls out a kazoo with a great flourish. He toots on the kazoo, thus calling the royal court. The KING, QUEEN and PRINCESS enter in a stately fashion. When Chris and the Princess lock eyes, it is most obviously love at first sight. The Knight, however, is the one who swoons over her.) Behold! The royal court, including Princess Wilhemina, the one destined to be my bride!
23 Brave Little Tailor 23 (He falls melodramatically at her feet. She steps over him and steps up to Chris.) PRINCESS: Hello. I am Princess Wilhemina. (She smiles. A bell rings.) Who are you? CHRIS: They call me...chris the Brave. But you can just call me Chris. PRINCESS: Alright, Chris. (She smiles. A bell rings.) Welcome to our kingdom. KNIGHT: Princess! Stay away from this riff-raff! He is charged with treason to the Crown Most High! Want to read the entire script? Order a perusal copy today!