Clean Up Aisle 10

This is a little different, it’s a short dramatic scene — keep in mind, I have no idea about formatting for dramatic scenes and have never written anything like this before. Enjoy!

 

INT. GROCERY STORE, EMPLOYEE BREAK ROOM

(a phone rings)

JOSIE: Hello?

JERRY: (sighing) There’s been a Code 656 in aisle 10, we need a clean up job ASAP.

JOSIE: (Examining an employee handbook) Demonic Possession? Shouldn’t Matthew handle that one?

JERRY: Code 6-five-6, not 666.

JOSIE: Oh! (she reads) …oh.

JERRY: I’m counting on you, this is your first day, don’t screw it up.

(Phone line clicks dead)

 

INT. GROCERY STORE, AISLE 10

(JOSIE stands in the center of the aisle, a dead body at her feet. Behind her, EDNA, an old woman, is slowly making her way down the aisle.)

JOSIE: Some clean up job. This is like the start to a bad joke.

EDNA: (Loudly) WHAT WAS THAT HONEY?

JOSIE: Nothing, ma’am, sorry ‘bout that.

(JOSIE takes out her phone and dials a number, it rings and MATTHEW picks up)

JOSIE: Matthew! I need your help.

MATTHEW: (Sighing) What is it? I’m on break. I just battled the Giant Squid in aisle 4 for, like, 2 hours and now I just wanna drink my coffee.

JOSIE: This is more important than that tentacled monstrosity. I need help with a Code 656.

MATTHEW: I see why you called me. What kind of demon is it, black eyes and head spinning or spewing creepy smoke?

JOSIE: 6-five-6, not 666.

MATTHEW: Ah, a murder, brings back memories of my first day.

JOSIE: So, can you help me?

EDNA: EXCUSE ME, HONEY, BUT WHERE CAN I FIND THE QUAKER OATS CEREAL?

JOSIE: Shit, there’s a customer, I gotta go.

(She closes the phone)

Can I help you, ma’am?

EDNA: LAMMY-PIE, YOU’RE GOING TO HAVE TO SPEAK UP, I’M A TRIFLE DEAF IN THIS EAR.

JOSIE: (Raising her voice slightly) Yes? What are you looking for?

EDNA: I AM LOOKING FOR THE QUAKER OATS– OH DEAR, IS THAT MAN DEAD?

JOSIE: It would appear so.

EDNA: REMINDS ME OF THE GOOD ‘OLE DAYS. SPENT MY CHILDHOOD IN VENEZUELA, I’LL HAVE YOU KNOW…

JOSIE: That’s wonderful, ma’am, now if you’ll excuse me…

(She picks up the phone and calls MATTHEW again)

MATTHEW: What is it now? Have you dealt with the 656?

JOSIE: No! This old woman keeps muttering on about her childhood in Venezuela.

MATTHEW: Oh, is that Edna? Tell her I say hi.

JOSIE: Matthew! How do I take care of this 656?

MATTHEW: Just consult the Employee Handbook.

JOSIE: I can’t! The paragraph under 656 is written in these weird symbols, which I can’t read, and even the footnote appears to be in Latin, which I only took in highschool, and,

MATTHEW: Josie, calm down.

JOSIE: (hyperventilating a little) And I just don’t think I’m cut out for this job, Matthew, I couldn’t fight the Giant Squid earlier this morning when Jerry told me to, and– and– and then I got lost in the produce section, but it’s a jungle in there, a literal jungle Matthew, like, vines crawling over the apples and some of them strangled this woman, and– and–

MATTHEW: Josie, breathe.

(Silence while JOSIE gets her breathing under control)

JOSIE: I’m alright now. But, just, how do you get through all of this?

(Enter MATTHEW, who hangs up the phone as soon as he’s caught sight of JOSIE)

MATTHEW: You know, on my first day, ‘bout five years ago, there were two other new employees. Can you guess what happened to them?

JOSIE: (Tiredly) They probably all died.

MATTHEW: No, they worked here for several years before the lightning strike of 2013 fried the break room coffee machine–

JOSIE: (Surprised) Oh, is that why it makes that strange whirring noise and flies around the room sometimes?
MATTHEW: Yes, but do you know how we made it through our first day?

JOSIE: (Humoring him) How?

MATTHEW: Because I convinced them that we should ask each other for help.

(A pause)

So, Josie, may I help you?

JOSIE: Thank you. I’m sorry to be so useless at this whole real life thing. It’s just, it’s a lot.

MATTHEW: I understand completely, and now understand this: It can only get better from here, okay?
JOSIE: But that’s what everybody says! ‘Get through high school, college will be easier.’ ‘Get a job, and work your way up the ladder. It’ll get easier’. Waiting for it to get easier all the time is like waiting for tomorrow, but it’s always today, and you can’t get to tomorrow, well I mean you could using that time traveling telephone box in the corner of the break room, but that’s besides the point, and this woman keeps asking me to do things for her, and talking to me, and I can’t deal with this dead person here on the ground while she’s here, and, and–

EDNA: MATTHEW, DARLING, HOW ARE YOU?

MATTHEW: Hello, Edna, dear. I’m well. How are you?

EDNA: WELL I WOULD BE LOVELY, EXCEPT I CAN’T FIND MY QUAKER OATS CEREAL, AND YOU KNOW I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT MY OATS IN THE MORNING, MATTHEW DEAR.

MATTHEW: Edna, is your hearing aid not working again?

(MATTHEW fiddles with the hearing aid)
Better?
EDNA: Yes, thank you darling, it was those pesky electric jellyfish in aisle 4, where you stock your jars of prunes, I’ve complained to the manager before that they should be stocked somewhere else, but nothing ever changes, you know, all these small things stay the same while everything else changes around them. Us old folks, we know that better than anyone. Now, if only you’d seen Venezuela in ‘62, or, was that ‘65? I can never remember these things.

MATTHEW: Well, I have to help Josie here with a 656.

EDNA: (examining the body) These modern-day demonic possessions never look as good as they used to, you know, I remember when every demon did the whole head-spinning, smoke-spewing deal, back in Venezuela-

JOSIE: (Interrupting) 6-five-6, not 666.

EDNA: What’s that, dear?

MATTHEW: Edna, dear, I think you’ll find your cereal just a couple aisles over. I’m just going to help Josie here with this snafu and then if you still need help I’ll be right over.

EDNA: That’s perfect, darling. Have fun with your little clean up job!

(Exit EDNA)

MATTHEW: (Facing JOSIE) Here’s what you do, to get through this job and everything else, are you ready?

JOSIE: I guess…

MATTHEW: Just take it step by step. What’s the first thing we have to do here?

JOSIE: Well, we have to move the body.

MATTHEW: Ok, you grab the legs and I’ll take the arms. We’re heading to the dumpster outside.

JOSIE: Ok, but what if I were alone? Jerry told me to handle this.

MATTHEW: You’re never alone, not at this job or anywhere else. There’s always someone you can ask for help. The trick is not being afraid, and making sure to get through all the bullshit someone puts up out of laziness or misunderstanding.

JOSIE: You’re actually pretty wise, Matthew.

MATTHEW: Only when you get through the bullshit, Josie.

(Exit JOSIE and MATTHEW carrying the body)

EDNA: (Off stage, echoing through the store) I FOUND IT!

 

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