Nighttime. DAWN explodes out onto the stage, she can’t be inside anymore. She isurban. She’s been living the street performer/ underground music and art scene formuch longer than most people stay in, because she really truly loves it. She’s a womanof principles and passion. She’s a little butch and in mostly black. She’s probably prettyfreaked out by the playscape—wft??? It adds to her aggravation. She kicks it (kicksomething that can be kicked—hard). It hurts.
DAWN: OW! Fuck. (she nurses her foot, probably on the brink of tears and screaming
and laughing and beyond frustrated)
Craig has entered, lightly but only out of respect for her. He has an open beer in hishand and he’s in comfortable at home clothes. If he wears shoes, they are sandals. Hehovers near the edge of the stage, waiting for Dawn to be done with her little scenelet.He is a man very secure in himself, his choices. This is his home. He is a kind man, butnot compromising. He’s always on a pretty even keel. He is brave. He is also a prettyincredible scientific mind.
Dawn sees him.
DAWN: This is all a bit early, don’t you think?
Craig shrugs. Takes a sip of beer.
DAWN: Right. You’ve got it all planned it out. You, NASA, it’s all… with a purpose, right?
Craig just smiles, slightly—kindly, but knowingly.
DAWN: (sighs) JESUS!
CRAIG: We have neighbors.
DAWN: It’s only like 9!
CRAIG: They have kids.
DAWN: Of course they do.
CRAIG: (matter of fact) You’ve hurt Helen’s feelings, you know.
DAWN: What do you care?
CRAIG: She’s my wife.
DAWN: Fuck off.
CRAIG: I said you know you’ve hurt her feelings.
DAWN: I said fuck off.
CRAIG: I just thought you’d like to know. As her sister.
DAWN: Thanks for the heads up.
CRAIG: And it’s probably because that display you gave in the kitchen a little while agomight be interpreted as pretty rude your first night here visiting in our house.
DAWN: Her house.
CRAIG: Ours, but your point doesn’t dispute mine.
DAWN: I’m not going to bite my tongue with her.
CRAIG: Clearly.
CRAIG: (considering her) I’ve never seen a woman so upset when she learns she’sgoing to be an aunt.
DAWN: That’s not… JESUS, come on! That’s not the issue and you know it.
CRAIG: Well, you began yelling once Helen told you, so that seems like a clear causalityto me.
DAWN: Clear causality. Great. Right. They teach you that in SpaceMan School? Or isthat something you picked up when you decided to chain my sister to your own closetedass?
CRAIG: Does my sexual orientation bother you?
DAWN: I lived on 2nd Ave and 6th street for 10 years. No it doesn’t bother me. Whatbothers me is that you’ve somehow completely brainwashed Helen to buy into yourfamily man bullshit. She and I weren’t raised to live lies, you understand. And forwhatever reason it’s not clear to her that you’re USING her for your own fucking careerso that you all can be picked to run fuck tests on the space station, which is basicallybeing paid for sex, I might add, also not something we were raised for!! My sister is
the fucking smartest person I know, and since meeting you, she’s entered into a falsecontract with you, prostituted herself to the US government and is about to bring a KIDinto all this muck!
CRAIG: Your sister is the smartest person I know too.
DAWN: Does it get you off somehow to fuck with her, then?
CRAIG: Why don’t you express your concerns to Helen?
DAWN: Why don’t you blow me.
CRAIG: You’re not my type.
(he smiles, she glares at him)
DAWN: … fucking sick.
CRAIG: What gave me away?
DAWN: Um, hitting on David at Thanksgiving two years ago.
CRAIG: Right.
DAWN: You thought my best friend wouldn’t tell me my sister’s fiancé was queer?
CRAIG: No, I assumed you already knew.
DAWN: How would I know?
CRAIG: I thought Helen had told you.
(beat, Dawn considers this… Helen knew?)
DAWN: Um. She didn’t. Tell me.
CRAIG: I think she was worried about how you would react. Can’t imagine why.
(this stings)(Helen enters from the house. She is pretty upset, but steadfast in her decisions. She’sjust starting to show pregnancy, perhaps, but she’s not about to pop or anything.)
CRAIG: Hi honey.
(They stand together, his arm on her back. They’re a pretty cute couple actually. Thesisters stare each other down)
HELEN: Is there something you want me to know, Dawn?
DAWN: Oh come on, this is what you want? Really? Hel, you are so much better, youDESERVE so much better than this!
HELEN: I have it pretty good, actually.
DAWN: How are you going to explain this to Becky, or, Bob, or whoever you end uphaving?
HELEN: I’ll tell her that her father and I love her very much. What’s the problem? I knowCraig loves me, in the way he is able to; I have a dream job, I’m top of my field, I’vebeen to the space station for chrissake, I live in a beautiful community surrounded byincredible scientists and explorers, some of the most interesting people in the world, andnow I’m having a baby. Where’s the fucking problem, and why the hell should I have toexplain it to you?
DAWN: This isn’t what Mom and Dad hoped for. For you to live a lie…
HELEN: Let me tell you something about Mom and Dad, Baby Dawn. It wasn’t all theperfect liberal academic book-haven you thought. Grown ups make sacrifices. I knowthat living like a teenager till you’re 50 seems to be your plan so that you don’t sacrificeyour “truth” of standing in central park covered in gold paint…
DAWN: Oh, come on…
HELEN: … or WHATEVER you’re preaching now to the same 10 people, but I got apretty good deal. My husband is gay. But he’s my best friend, he’s committed to me, andboth of us get the chance to be pioneers with this baby. She was conceived in SPACE.Can you comprehend how important that is?
DAWN: So your main goal in life now is to play “Beam me up, Scotty” with RichardSimmons over here???
HELEN: My main goal is to explore the great unknown, and I’m one of TWO in theWORLD who earned the opportunity!
DAWN: I don’t…
HELEN: You don’t understand.
DAWN: (finally admitting) I don’t.
HELEN: I know. But listen, Craig’s a good guy. He really is.
CRAIG: I really am.
HELEN: And your niece’s name is going down in history.
DAWN: Please tell me she’s not taking his.
HELEN: It’ll be a hyphenate.
CRAIG: I’m going to step inside. Hel, you want anything?
HELEN: Put some tea on, would you?
CRAIG: Magic word?
HELEN: (slight blush) Engage.
DAWN: Ugh.
CRAIG: (smiling) Nerd humor. (he leaves)
(The sisters sit for a long moment)
DAWN: So… how does it work, exactly, in space?
HELEN: (considers her for a moment) Ok, stand up.
(they stand up and Helen begins a tutorial on space sex. Music comes up as shespace jogs toward her sister, ad libbing the lesson. Music comes up to cover thechoreography—probably Spaceman by Bif Naked.)