"Scars, Secrets, Cuts | Teen Ink

"Scars, Secrets, Cuts

August 6, 2012
By C3steaksauce, MONTGOMERY, Texas
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C3steaksauce, MONTGOMERY, Texas
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Favorite Quote:
The truth is nothing, what you believe to be true is everything.

Author's note: Many kids face suicide, self infliction, and depression. I wrote this to give teens and young adults hope in the world that even though you may feel alone; there's someone out there who can help you. Never give up.

Scene One- Overture
The music starts to play as the lights come up on Michael. Kellie, Jude, Carly, and Elizabeth stand separately in the shadows awaiting their turn to speak.

Michael- Emma.. I can’t explain to you how incredibly sorry I am. There’s so much I didn’t get to do with you, so much I didn’t get to tell you. I was a terrible father to you, and I won’t ever forgive myself. I was so focused on this damn campaign that I forgot what was important to me. I forgot about you and your mother. Kellie won’t even speak to me. I call her every day.. Apparently she’s staying with grandma. I removed myself from the campaign. Not that any of that matters. What does matter is getting to tell you what I should’ve told you months, if not years ago.

Michael wipes tears from his eyes, takes a deep breath, and continues.

Michael- Ever since you were born I was so happy to have a little beautiful baby girl. While you were growing up I was so enthusiastic about all of the things we’d get to do together: Your first barbie, going to the zoo, birthday parties. but.. I guess I just lost track of things, lost track of time. You grew up so fast.. I wanted my baby girl back, and with the election.. I forgot who I was. I wasn’t always an abusive father who didn’t care about anyone but himself. But something changed in me that night. When you died.. I cried for the first time since the day you were born. I miss you Emma, and for the first time in way too long I’ll say what I’ve should have said a whole lot more: I love you Emma.

The light fades off of Michael as the overture picks up pace and the light rises onto Kellie

Kellie- I’ve been bottling all of this up, and I just can’t do it anymore. I haven’t replied to your father in over a month. I moved out of the house. I couldn’t bear to walk past your room every morning.. I couldn’t stand not waking up to the soft sound of your footsteps creaking against the wood. I miss all of it. I miss you. A parent should never have to bury their child.. I love you Emma, you were so much like me, except so much like your father. You had that tenacity that he possessed. When you wanted something you went out and got it. I loved that about you. I am truly sorry for never sticking up for you. For never noticing the pain you were going through. I got so wound up in helping your father with his campaign that I forgot about you.. I hate that so much. You’re an amazing and fabulous daughter. Once more, I love you Emma. I love you so much.

The lights fade once more and come back up on Elizabeth the music softens

Elizabeth- Emma my dear. Your parents first hired me whenever you were about 3. Your dad was campaigning for governor of New York, and he just didn’t have time to look after you. Your mother at this time was pretty sick, so I helped out. I did all I could for you, and I cared about you so much. I remember everything about you, from the way your hair fell down, to the soft dimples in your cheeks when you laughed. You were an amazing friend to me, and I’ll forever miss you. I wish I could’ve done more, but I know you’re in a better place now. Goodbye Emma.

Elizabeth bows her head and whispers a prayer as the lights fade on her and slowly come up on Carly. Carly plays this VERY light heartedly.

Carly- What the hell am I supposed to do now? You were my best friend. Now who am I going to sit with at lunch and laugh at the jocks trying to pick up girls? Who’s going to pick me up early from school so we can go shopping or who’s going to go to late night chick flicks and bawl their eyes out to terrible romance with me?
Carly starts to get a more serious.
Carly- No one.. I miss you Emma. What happened to us. We were the best of friends.. You pushed me away, and I couldn’t figure out why. I thought it was because of Jude. I despised him.. He took away what should’ve been mine. You were MY friend.. I guess I never realized how much you needed him. How I didn’t realize.. Anything. Everything got so mashed up.. Between the parties and the boys, it was hard to tell which way was up, and which way was down. I neglected your feelings. Hell, I completely stopped talking to you. That’s what I regret the most. Best friends forever.

Carly places her hand to her heart and grasps her ring that is around her neck. The light fades on Carly and rises on Jude.

Jude- I don’t know where to begin. I’ve known you for eight months, but it seems like I’ve known you all my life. You were the love of my life, and my best friend. In the short eight months that we knew each other, we went through so much together.

The music changes into the first song

Song One- “ “

I remember the way your hair fell down
That day we met in the crowd
Tons of kids standing around
We connected like the dots
Love at first sight, or so I thought

The first day that we kissed
You made me swear to secrecy
No one knows, no kiss and tell
It was just me and you saved by the bell

It was moments like that I’ll never forget
I’ll always remember the day that you said
Is this love, oh tell me dear, is this love

the lights come up on Michael and Kellie and they start to sing a duet

The day you took your first step
We were so proud we knew it then
You’d be so successful and all the rest
Wouldn’t compare to Emma Rose

Michael, Kellie, and Jude sing in unison

Oh Emma Rose, please know
I love you so, damn much
Emma Rose goodbye

Scene Two- Elections are Announced

The lights come up on a reporter standing outside the Rose Estate. Michael Rose just announced his candidacy for president and Emily Johnson wants to be the first to get his opinion. She meets him as he leaves his front door.

Sandy Robins- It’s Sandy Robins NYND here with Michael Rose. He just announced his candidacy for president of the United States. Any thoughts, comments, concern?
Michael- Well, Sandy. Not really, there isn’t much else to say at this point. I start my campaign at 8AM and from there I guess we will just have to see how it goes.
Sandy Robins- Good to know Michael. Let me ask you this though, what are your thoughts on the topic of your 18 year old daughter Emma following in your footsteps? She’s only six or seven months from graduating. So, tell us Michael: what does she want to do?

From the window above and stage left of Michael, Emma peeks out down below
Michael- Yes, this is her senior year, and Sandy it’s really one of those things that are unspoken. She’s valedictorian of her class and what daughter’s dream isn’t to follow in their family's footsteps?
The lights fade as Sandy and her cameraman exits stage right and Michael walks back inside the house. The lights then come up on Emma’s room as Kellie enters to see Emma sitting on her bed, rather frustrated.

Kellie- Supper’s almost ready dear, why don’t you freshen up and come on down.
Emma- You know mom, I’m not really feeling up to it. I think I’ll just have Brett bring me some food.
Kellie- Are you feeling well? Ever since dad announced his candidacy you’ve been acting so strange.
Emma- Look mom. I’m fine, I just have a headache. I’m going to finish up some homework and get some rest.
Kellie- Okay hunny. Kellie kisses Emma’s head. I’ll have Ms. Waller bring you up some medicine for your headache. Kellie exits.

As Kellie shuts the door Emma reaches under her bed and pulls out a little black box with a keyhole. She precedes to open the book pulling out a journal and setting the box on her nightstand. She begins to write.

Emma- Dear diary, once again I know how cliche it is really. I’m 18 years old and I have everything a teenage girl could ever possibly want. I have good friends, rich parents, and perfect grades. Yet why is something missing, and why am I feeling so empty. Why must I confide in self infliction? Is it love that I’m missing? Is it warmth? Or attention? I wish I knew. I wish someone knew..

Emma puts her journal down and the music starts to play.

Song Two- “Anybody”

Is there anybody who will listen
Is there anybody who does care
Or am I all alone in this mystery
of a place we call Earth

Is there anybody who will hold me
Is there anybody who can see me
Is there anybody out there to
save me from myself

I’m tired of feeling so far down
I’m tired of feeling so damn lost
Nothing left but a knife
Two more days and maybe I’ll die

Is there anybody who will listen
Is there anybody who does care
Is there anybody who will hold me
Is there anybody who can see me
Is there anybody out there who can
Save me from myself


After the last words Emma reaches for her knife and the music and lights fade at the same time
Scene Three- Thanksgiving Break Ends

The lights come up on a very classy high school. This scene is set in the main corridor. Above is a music room where Jude sits and plays the piano.

Carly- I really cannot wait to graduate and move on in the world you know?
Emma- Yeah, I know just what you mean.
Carly- How’s things been with the whole election and all that?
Emma- Oh you know.. The typical: Stay out of the way, smile when people take your picture.
Emma rubs her arm and kind of stares off into the distance
Carly- Emma, you do realize that summer is coming soon? It’s going to get too hot to wear such long sleeves.
Emma- Yeah, well.. I get cold!!
Across the hall Jude is walking with Simon
Simon- The usual after school today?
Jude- Man, I’m ready for a change. Not the usual.
Simon- But we always go to Jim’s hot dog stand?
Jude- I know, but sometimes it’s good to have some change in our lives,
Simon- Then what should we do?
Jude- Well, I’ve been thinking about that.
Simon- And?
Jude looks up across the hall and sees Emma for the first time.
Simon- Jude? What’re you-
Jude- WHO is that?
Simon notices Emma and then shrugs
Simon- I don’t know man, but don’t get any ideas. You know what happened the last time you tried to get a girl.
Jude- Come on, that was different!
Simon- How?!
Jude- Well...
Simon- Exactly. It isn’t any different. You can’t go around playing All You Need Is Love everytime you see a pretty girl.
Jude- They don’t call me Jude Maxwell for nothing!
Simon- They call you Jude Maxwell because that’s YOUR name!
Jude- Be right back! Time to work my magic!
Simon- Don’t do it man.
Jude leaves and walks across to Emma and she stops and looks up with a smile.
Jude- Hey. I couldn’t help but notice that you were an angel. I’m Jude.
Emma blushes.
Carly- Oh you can’t be serious.
Jude reaches for Emma’s hand and kisses it.
Jude- Same time tomorrow?
Jude exits.
Carly- Can you believe that?
Emma- He was cute!
Carly- Emma?! Are you serious? Don’t you know who that is?
Emma- No? I think I’d remember if I met someone that..
Carly- Revolting? No I know! Poor!!
Emma- No! Cute! Who is he?
Carly- Poor! Well.. He’s Jude Maxwell, but he’s poor!
Emma- So?
Carly- So, you know your father wouldn’t want you hanging around someone like that.
Emma- What daddy doesn’t know won’t hurt him.
Carly- Who are you?

The music begins this song is played very light-hearted and playful banter between friends.

Song Three “
Who am I you ask?
Do you even know?
So, what if daddy doesn’t approve
Doesn’t mean I don’t know what to do
He’s cute, so what if he’s poor
I like boys, hit the door

Emma, do you even know what you’re saying
This boy he’s bad news I can feel it
Your father’s election that’s what matters
Not some kid with high top converse

Who am I?
That’s what matters
Who am I?
I don’t even know
You’re Emma Rose
That’s who you are
Your father is Governor

Emma Rose, is but a name
Don’t you care? Won’t you listen?

I’m trying Emma
Truly I am
But it’s difficult
Can’t you see?
Your father! He’s scares me!

The music starts to slow down going into the last verse

Oh Carly, you’re my best friend
I’d never put you in harms way
So I tell you what we’re gonna do
You go home, I’ll find that boy
One date to see, maybe he’s just a toy

The music fades with the lights ending scene three.

Scene Four
The lights come up right outside of school where Jude and Simon sit, waiting for the bus. Emma walks out and up to Jude.

Emma- Hey, did you really mean what you said back there?
Surprised Jude replies
Jude- Of course I did. That’s not something you lie about.
Emma- Well, I thought that was really sweet of you.
Jude blushes
Jude- Well, what can I say. Haha, that was the plan.
Emma- Now that isn’t cute..
Jude- Oh, right. Sorry!
A horn honks and Emma looks up.
Emma- Well, that’s my ride. I have to go.
Emma kisses Jude on the cheek.
Jude- Wait.. When will I see you again?
Emma turns around
Emma- You tell me!
Lights down immediately.

Scene Five-
The lights come up at Jude’s house where he sits in his room playing the guitar.
Jude’s mother, Kellie, walks in.

Kellie- Jude hunny, what do you want for dinner?
Jude- Anything really mom. In fact, why don’t you just sit down and let me cook something for you!
Kellie- Jude, what’s gotten into you? You don’t cook anymore haha,,
They both laugh.
Jude- Just been a good day.
Kellie- Who’s the girl?
The music starts-

Song Four “Chance For Her”
Blonde hair blue eyes
Smile brighter than the sky
I don’t know why, but

I’m in love with a girl
I barely know
Three minutes come and go
but it feels like I’ve known her all my life

It may sound crazy
A tad bit absurd
and I might be making a big mistake
But for I’d take the chance
A chance for her

I saw her from across the hall
like an angel standing there
the path to her lit up bright
as roses fell from the air

Simon told me man:
Don’t do this to yourself
All I could was smile
Open my mouth and say

The music fades

Kellie- Well, that’s great Jude. I wish you the best of luck with her. She seems pretty fantastic.
Jude- Oh she is. So, what do you want for dinner?
Kellie’s pager rings
Kellie- I’m sorry Jude. I have to-
Jude- It’s okay mom. I understand, be safe.
Lights fade as Kellie exits.

Scene Six
Emma comes home to an empty house except for the staff working there.

Ms. Waller- Emma dear, you’re home kind of late. Did school keep you up?
Emma- Not exactly. haha.
Ms. Waller- Oh Emma, I know that face. Who is he? You know your father won’t like this.
Emma- Oh come on, you don’t even know
Ms. Waller- Emma I’ve been looking after you before you even knew you were a girl so I know when you have met a cute boy.
Emma- Oh alright.. His name is Jude. He goes to my school. He’s there on a musical scholarship.
Ms. Waller- Well, he seems like a nice young boy, but you know the rules, and I’d hate to see you get into anymore fights with your father over all of this.
Emma- Yeah, you’re probably right..
Ms. Waller- I always am dear, now run along and finish your homework. Your parents are out running some campaign errands.
Emma- Of course.
Emma hugs Ms. Waller and scampers upstairs to her room.
Ms. Waller laughs and shakes her head and exits into the staff room
Lights Fade

Scene 7-
Timothy is sitting on the couch with Brett and Doug and a few other members of the staff and as they see Ms. Waller enter they sense that they should be going

Doug- I believe we actually have some work that we should be getting along to.
Brett- But, Mr. and Mrs. Rose aren’t even home. What’s the big deal in taking a little break?
Ms. Waller- They don’t pay you to sit around and do nothing all day do they Brett?
Brett- They barely pay me as it is.
Ms. Waller- What was that Brett?
Doug- He said he’d love to get back to work.
Brett- No I didn’t!
Doug- Shut up Brett!
Timothy can’t refrain from bursting into laughter and Brett and Doug finally exit leaving just Ms. Waller and Timothy alone.

Timothy- Emma make it home okay?
Ms. Waller- Yeah. She made it home, but I’m not sure if she’ll be okay.
Timothy- What’s his name?
The share a moment of laughter
Ms. Waller- Jude something. He goes to her school. Maxwell I believe.
Timothy- Ah! I know his mother, Kellie. She’s a nurse down at the hospital. Lovely woman she is.
Ms. Waller- Is there anyone you don’t know Tim?
Timothy- Well, I don’t know a Mr. Waller now do I?
Timothy gives Ms. Waller a wink.
Ms. Waller- Oh Tim! Stop it now. Ms. Waller blushes. There never was a Mr. Waller.
Timothy- Under his breath- Yet.
Ms. Waller- What was that?
Timothy- Nothing. Let’s focus at the topic at hand: Emma. She knows how Michael feels about her and relationships. Let’s not forget Justin.
Ms. Waller- Oh I know, and I told her that, but there was such a bright smile on her face. One that had been missing for some time. Maybe this is what she needs.
Timothy looks at Ms. Waller with the ‘you-already-know’ look
Ms. Waller- Oh alright. No more of this Jude fellow,
Lights fade

Scene 8- School Assembly
Lights come up on students sitting in an auditorium. The principal, Mr. Gullow, is speaking

Mr. Gullow- Good morning students. It’s good to see all of you today. As you know it’s getting closer to the end of the semester and as always at the end of the year we allow our very own talent show. The first place winner(s) will be granted a $50,000 scholarship to any school, while second place will receive 1 $25,000. I gladly welcome Mrs. Kato, the choir teacher here, and the main judge of the talent show.
The students clap as Mr. Gullow hands the microphone to Mrs. Kato
Mrs. Kato- Thank you. How is everyone doing this morning? The kids cheer I’m very happy to be apart of such a great program we have going on here, and I’m also very ecstatic about this year’s talent show. It’s open to anyone who wants to audition, but only the top twenty will actually be able to perform the night of the show. Any act is welcome, as long as it’s school appropriate of course. Auditions are in two months, and I can’t wait for everyone to audition. So, I do advise you to start practicing now.Thank you all and good luck!
The bell rings as the students are released to class

Scene 9-
Simon- So, what’re you going to do this year man?
Jude- I don’t know. Probably one of the songs I’ve been writing.
Simon- Awesome! You definitely can win this year.
Jude notices Emma
Jude- I’ll be right back.
Jude walks over to Emma
Jude- Hey Emma!
Emma- Oh hi. Jude was it?
Jude- Like you could forget. Anyway, I was wondering if you were going to audition for the talent show?
Emma- I thought about it, yes.
Jude- Well, why don’t we do something together?
Emma- Jude, are you asking me out on a date?
Jude- Are you saying yes?
Emma- I’m saying- Emma’s driver interrupts her.
Emma- I have to go, but do you know the little hot dog stand across the street from the schol?
Jude- Everyone knows Jim’s hot dog stand!
Emma- Meet me there tonight at 6:30
Jude- I’ll be there.
Emma- Good. Emma kisses Jude on the cheek and leaves.
Jude- Surprised- Bye Emma.

Scene 10
It’s 6:15 and Jude is waiting by Jim’s hot dog stand making conversation with Jim.

Jim- Now Jude, why must you always be hanging around my hot dog stand?
Jude- What? Everyone knows you have the best hot dogs in all of New York!
Jim- That may be true, but I don’t see you buying no hot dogs!
Jude- You got me there Jim. I’m just waiting on a friend.
Jim- What’s her name?
Jude- What do you mean?
Jim- You’re standing around waiting on a friend to meet you here. Now, I’ve known you for 5 years Jude, and not once have I seen you waiting here for just anyone. So, I’ll ask again: what’s her name?
Jude- Emma. Emma Rose.
Jim- Emma Rose?! You mean, Michael Rose’s daughter?!
Jude- That would be her.
Jim- I don’t think that’s a very good idea. He’s running for president, that doesn’t seem like a good plan son.

Jude notices Emma crossing the street looking rather fabulous.
Jude- Hold that thought Jim!
Jude grabs a hot dog and walks over to Emma handing her the hot dog.
Jude- For you, my lady.
Emma- Is this your idea of a first date?
Jude- Is this what this is then? A first date?
Emma- If that’s what you want to call it, yes.
Jude- Well, in that case, follow me. I want to show you something.
Jude grabs Emma by the hand and they jog off into an alley and up a ladder onto a roof.
Emma- Where are we Jude?
Jude- This right here Emma is where I go to think. From here you can see our school, Jim’s stand, and if you look right over there, Jude points off to the right of the school there’s where I live!
Emma- I see! Emma takes Jude by the hand and they sit down on top of a metal box.
Emma- Tell me a bit about yourself Jude.
Jude- Not much to tell really. I’ve lived in the same house my whole entire life. New York is all I’ve ever known. It’s where I want to live my whole life. I love New York. My mom works at the hospital, she’s a nurse there.
Emma- What about your father?
Jude- He died a few years ago. He was a NYPD detective, and it’s always a dangerous job. He was working on some big drug bust. He left to go undercover, and well.. He never came back. Jude starts to get choked up. We buried an empty casket.
Emma- I’m so sorry Jude. I had no idea. That’s.. Terrible.
Jude- Some days are better than other. I miss him so much.
The music starts to play.

Song Five
Emma starts to sing

Raise your head and smile
Your dad is watching over you now
Wipe your tears, don’t cry
He loves you more than ever

Jude wipes his eyes and starts to sing

You don’t know what it’s like
To wake up and know he isn’t there
To wonder why and why God put me here
With no hope and full of despair
Emma hugs Jude firmly
Close your eyes, don’t forget him
No sorrow, no regrets
He wouldn’t want that of your life

It’s a feeling I can’t explain
For once I feel complete
Close your eyes, don’t leave me
I need you tonight

Emma and Jude climb down the ladder and onto the New York City sidewalk. Instrumental music plays as the walk down the sidewalk and across New York City. As they do different things the seasons slowly change showing the change of time from November to February, and the scene ends.

Scene Eleven-
Emma is sitting at the dining room table and Michael walks in and throws his glass of wine at the wall completely terrifying Emma.

Michael- What the hell do you think you’re doing Emma?!
Emma- Dad, what’re you talking about.
Michael- Look, at first I let your little fling with this stupid boy slide, because I thought that it would fade. Do you know how embarrassing it is to have to hear about what people say of you two?! I forbid you to see him.
Emma- Dad! You can’t do that. I love Jude, he’s an amazing person and he makes me happy. What’s wrong with that?
Michael- What’s wrong with that? Emma are you fucking kidding me?! Do you not understand how much pressure I’m under? I can’t worry about you and this Jude kid. You will not see him again. Period.
Emma- That’s all you ever care about, that’s all that matters to you: this stupid election. I hope you lose. I really really do!
Michael slaps Emma across the face. Emma burst into tears and sprints to her room. Kellie has walked in and saw Michael slap her. Michael notices Kellie
Michael- I didn’t. She just. You know I’d never..
Kellie- Michael. Don’t. I don’t know what’s gotten into you, but something is going to have to change. Seriously change. Or, you’ll lose her. You’ll lose us all.
The lights fade immediately.

Scene Twelve-
Emma is sitting on her bed frustrated. She throws the picture of her father at the wall and continues to cry. She pulls the box from under her bed and opens it, but as she grabs her knife she notices the picture of her and Jude kissing. The music begins.

Song Six “Scars, Secrets, Cuts”
Another night just like before
sound of a slamming door
knife hits the floor
blood shines red
as I kick the bed
I've had enough
end this pain I must

The scars that you don't see
Secrets that lie beneath
Cuts that you don't hear
It ends tonight, it ends tonight

Complete the Circut
To becoming new
Connect the dots
Be who you are
Change the way
You see the light
Time after time
you try and try


Same old story
Different life
Bleed the pain
Stop the knife
With all your might
don't give up on this fight


Slamming door
Knife hits the floor blood shines red


Scars, Secrets, Cuts
It ends tonight

As the music starts to fade Emma puts the blade back into her box and throws it in the trash. The lights fade at the same pace as the music and the current closes


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