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DANIELLE: Hello? Nadine? I’m here for the drama class. Hi.

CADY: Oops. Am I busted?

DANIELLE: No.

CADY: I hope not.

DANIELLE: You can’t smoke grass in school.

CADY: Privilege of the professional. Eases inhibitions. You down here for drama?

DANIELLE: Yeah. Are you the drama teacher?

CADY: And you’re…let me guess. Cecile James?

DANIELLE: No. I’m, uh…Danielle Bowden.

CADY:Danielle? Oh,we spoke last night.

DANIELLE: Yeah.

CADY: Oh, I’m sorry. How rude. (Offering her the joint). It’s okay.

DANIELLE: Um…

CADY: (Singing) I think we’re alone now

DANIELLE: Okay. Thanks.

CADY: Here. I’m gonna give this to you. (Puts it out with his fingers).

DANIELLE: Ow.

CADY: Little trick I learned. Take it.

DANIELLE: You know, when we spoke on the phone last night?

CADY: Mm-hmm.

DANIELLE: Um… you really made sense to me and…I thought a lot.

CADY: Those are human truths, darlin’.That’s what it’s all about. That’s what we deal with here. See the book you have, Thomas Wolfe? It’s all about self-discovery,
the inner voyage.

DANIELLE: I like the end where, um… Eugene’s journey… It was really, uh, mystical, you know. And it was almost like a pilgrimage?

CADY: Almost like a cop-out,if you ask me.

DANIELLE:Those were the facts of Wolfe’s life.

CADY: The novel is what you would call a “roman a clef.” You know what that is?

DANIELLE: I’m not sure.

CADY: Nonetheless, you can’t escape your demons just by leaving home. Although writers do find new freedom when they relocate abroad. Take Henry Miller. Have you read his trilogy? “Plexus, Nexus, and Sexus.”

DANIELLE: No.

CADY: You haven’t read that? You’re missin’ something.

DANIELLE: Well, you know what? I did read Tropic of Cancer. Just parts of it though, ’cause, uh… I had to sneak it of my parents’ shelf, you know? But, his descriptions are pretty vivid, I would say.

CADY: Yeah. In one of the novels, I don’t recall which, he describes an erection as piece of lead with wings on it.

DANIELLE:I didn’t read that part.

CADY: Of course not. You’re not allowed. Your parents don’t want you to achieve adulthood. That’s natural. They know the pitfalls of adulthood, all that freedom.
They know it only too well. Temptation to stray, deflecting their guilt and anger onto you… for a crime that’s not even a crime… for smokin’ grass.

DANIELLE: Wait a second. Um… where are you from?

CADY: Where am I from?

DANIELLE:Yeah.

CADY: Where do you think I’m from?

DANIELLE:I don’t know, but…

CADY: If I told you, you gonna get mad at me?

DANIELLE: No.

CADY: I’m from a black forest.

DANIELLE: That’s funny. You’re not the drama teacher, are you?

CADY: Maybe I’m the big, bad wolf.

DANIELLE: Um… So, you’re that guy that’s been hanging around the house? You’re the one that killed my mom’s dog?

CADY: Your mom’s dog was killed?

DANIELLE: Yeah.

CADY: I didn’t even know anything about that. That’s a shame. That’s a damn shame.

DANIELLE: Yes, it was.

CADY: What kind of dog was it?

DANIELLE: Um… I don’t know. He was just… He was fluffy and…

CADY: Fluffy?

DANIELLE: Mm-hmm. So you didn’t do that?

CADY: Of course I didn’t do that.

DANIELLE: Okay.

CADY:I wouldn’t do that.

DANIELLE: So, what are you doing here then?

CADY: Well, I came to meet you, to be honest with you.

DANIELLE: Why?

CADY:’Cause…I wanted to meet you, see what you were like. I see you’re a nice person. That’s all.

DANIELLE: You’re not gonna hurt me, are you?

CADY: No, I’m not gonna hurt you at all. There’s no hurting here, Danielle.’Tween us there’s no anger… nothin’. Just a search for truth. I mean, did you judge me, did you get angry at me… when you caught me
smokin’ the grass? Hmm?

DANIELLE: No.

CADY: But your parents, they judged you. They got plenty angry at you, didn’t they?

DANIELLE: Yeah.

CADY: Mm-hmm. They punished you for their sins.
What did they do?

DANIELLE: They, uh…My dad…They just yelled a whole lot and, um…My mom cried…and my dad said I couldn’t drive the Cherokee.

CADY:I’d say they punished you for their sins, and you resent that,and you should resent it. But Professor “Do-Right”has a little advice for you. You shouldn’t damn ’em. Don’t judge ’em. Just forgive ’em,for they know not what they do.

DANIELLE: Well, um, why do you hate my father?

CADY: I don’t hate him at all. Oh, no, I pray for him. I’m here to help him. I mean, we all make mistakes, Danielle. You and I have. At least we try to admit it. Don’t we?

DANIELLE: Yeah.

CADY: Mm-hmm. But your daddy, he don’t. Every man Carries a circle of hell around his head like a halo. Your daddy too. Every man… Every man…has to go through hell to reach his paradise. You know what paradise is?

DANIELLE: No.

CADY: Salvation.’Cause your daddy’s not happy. Your mommy’s not happy. And you know what? You’re not happy. Are you?

DANIELLE: No, I’m not.

CADY: You thought about me last night, didn’t you?

DANIELLE: Um, yes, I did.

CADY: I know. You know, I think I might have found a companion, a companion for that long walk to the light. Do you mind if I put my arm around you?

DANIELLE: Um… Um…

CADY: It’s okay.

DANIELLE: No, I don’t mind.

CADY: Okay.

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