A Ten-Minute, One Act Play
The Lost Prince of Paradise
By G. L. Horton
copyright © 2004
A bench, or a picnic table with benches, at a New Age vacation
camp. MAGGIE, a voluptuous woman, is reading. FUZZY walks up to
her and waits for her to notice him. Fuz is an awkward but not
unattractive geek on the cusp of middle age. He has poor vision,
and wears thick glasses. When MAGGIE just keeps reading, FUZZY
clears his throat and addresses her.
FUZZY: Maggie? Can I talk to you?
MAGGIE: (pause) Possibly.
MAGGIE: You look like you expect something.
FUZZY: I can't tell what look you have. Because of my bad eyes.
I can't read faces, so I have trouble telling if I'm... if I'm
MAGGIE: What do you hear in my voice?
MAGGIE: Not quite. The potential is there, though.
FUZZY: You can tell me to go away.
MAGGIE: Go away, Fuzz. (pause) My defenses are up. I'm
not going to make it easy for you.
FUZZY: Well, if it's hopeless--
MAGGIE: I didn't say it's hopeless, Fuzzy. Just...
FUZZY: What is it I should...?
MAGGIE: Sit down. Just don't assume anything.
FUZZY: (he sits) I've been talking to Sam.
MAGGIE: Ah hah.
FUZZY: Sam says you helped him.
MAGGIE: I like to think I did.
FUZZY: Sam thinks you're the Earth Goddess. He told me about
MAGGIE: "Where women wise in the ways of love dedicate themselves
to sexual healing". Yeah. If were a powerful Goddess, building
a Garden of Eden, I'd create that temple. But this is still the
USA, home of Capitalist Christianity; and I'm just a hardworking
therapist on holiday.
FUZZY: You worked a miracle for Sam.
MAGGIE: Nothing Goddess-like about it-- I didn't even need to
be smart. A simple little mechanical problem, Sam's.
FUZZY: Maybe mine is, too. Sam says he knows other guys who speak
MAGGIE: Fuzzy, we're on vacation. Having a good time. A certain
amount of peer therapy goes on in this place, people learn and
heal and have epiphanies. That's great, but--
FUZZY: But what?
MAGGIE: Is this going to be work? I'm not here as a professional.
You're not my client.
FUZZY: No, I didn't mean .....
MAGGIE: To hire me? Then, what? We're not friends.
FUZZY: I was hoping that after that massage workshop that we
MAGGIE: Oh! So you're saying that my massage turned you on?
FUZZY: Well, yes, but -- not so anybody'd notice. I was just
incredibly relaxed. I felt as though I was doing it right, and
that you trusted me. So I can trust you. (FUZ begins to massage
MAGGIE: You have good hands-- I'll give you that. But it wasn't
FUZZY: Then, last night we watched each other dancing.
MAGGIE: Ah! You saw something that made you think--?
FUZZY: I didn't see-- I'm legally blind, remember? Plus my glasses
were off. You were barely a blur. But I thought I felt some kind
of aura, some warmth and--- . Coming at me from you. That's why
I asked Sam about you.
MAGGIE: Sorry, Fuz. Whatever you felt last night may well have
been coming from me-- but it certainly wasn't directed at you.
FUZZY: It wasn't? Jeeze!
MAGGIE: Selina's an old friend of mine. After what happened to
her, I'm not about to get tangled up with you.
FUZZY: You know about Selina?
MAGGIE: Who doesn't? It was pretty damn public! And before Selina
there was Jennifer, and Julie--
FUZZY: I never intended to --
MAGGIE: Yeah? Well, we know what road is paved with good intentions.
FUZZY: Sometimes I-- I miss cues.
MAGGIE: Miss cues? Is that what you call it? What I've heard
is that if the woman says "yes" and shows enthusiasm,
you fizzle and leave her high and dry. But if she says "no",
you refuse to listen. (Shrugs away from FUZZY's massage, turns
to confront him.)
FUZZY: It's because I can't see well enough--.
MAGGIE: The hell it is!
FUZZY: I never know if I'm going to be turned on until we've
begun to touch, and then it's too late! Don't you understand?
If a woman doesn't feel right to me, doesn't activate my tactile
program, then I can't get started. But if she does and I do get
started, I can't stop.
MAGGIE: What do you mean, you can't stop?
FUZZY: If everything feels right, I think what I want is what
she wants too. All systems go. Unless she yells or hits me or
something. Then I stop. But by that time... (he droops in despair,
his head on his hands)
MAGGIE: This is not a small mechanical problem. This is, like,
majorly f--ked up. Majorly, from square one. You may have to go
back and be re-birthed. (she massages his shoulders in comfort)
FUZZY: But why! I've been good and I've been happy. I've had
sex like a prince in Paradise.
MAGGIE: You have?
FUZZY: Absolutely. Heaven on earth.
MAGGIE: With the perfect woman?
FUZZY: With more than one. Equally perfect.
MAGGIE: Serial perfection, or--?
FUZZY: Simultaneous perfection. Group.
MAGGIE: When was this?
FUZZY: It was---back in the 10th grade. I had it all.
MAGGIE: In the 10th grade. At 16.
FUZZY: 15. I skipped a grade.
MAGGIE: At 15. You had it all.
FUZZY: Everything. There were a bunch of us, the class nerds,
you'd say. A sister and brother, two kids who were cousins and
lived in a duplex, and another girl, a loner girl. And me. We
were the Science Club and the Photography Club. Meetings every
night. Orgies, really-- except that we too young to know what
we were doing. We called it our lab, our experiment, and it was,
literally. We were doing research, trying every stimulation imaginable.
Secretly at school or in the siblings' home darkroom. Perfume,
hairspray, anything associated with the old teachers or with the
cheerleader types who were our enemies: all that turns me off.
For me, sex smells like sweat and chemicals.
FUZZY: It was pretty wow. Of course at the time I figured it
might be common. All the other kids, the ones who never spoke
to me, for all I knew Everybody Else hung out doing this after
school too, for generations, and nobody ever told. (FUZ takes
over doing the massage, trying to please her)
MAGGIE: Did you all think that?
FUZZY: Why would anybody tell?
MAGGIE: The girls were willing? Full participants?
FUZZY: You don't believe it's possible.
MAGGIE: Oh, yes: it's possible. It would have been Paradise for
me, too ! But most girls that young just go along to please the
FUZZY: Why would the girls want to please us? We were even lower
on the status pole than they were. The sister, Emma, had a copy
of "The Joy of Sex". Originally, she'd wanted to work
though it with her brother, but Douglas was kind of squeamish
about incest, so he recruited the rest of us.
MAGGIE: What were the girls like?
FUZZY: You mean besides enthusiastic and eager? Skinny. All three
of our girls were skinny. Selina accused me of wanting someone
anorexic. Like Allie MacBeal, or underwear models skinny every
where but where she's had implants. But I don't watch tv-- it's
just a blur to me, it might as well be radio. And certainly I
never look at fashion magazines. Those skinny 10th grade girls
who were my friends and my lab partners? -- my partners in crime?--
they're my ideal. Tiffany-- that was the loner girl-- she suddenly
started growing tits, huge boobs on her scrawny little chest,
and it was --it was miraculous. More than anything I liked to
wrap my arms around her and wallow and nuzzle. Douglas said Tiffany's
hugeness was my fault-- all my attention was making them grow.
I asked Tiffany if she wanted me to stop. But she said she liked
MAGGIE: So this went on for...?
FUZZY: Sophomore and junior. Two years. Maybe longer for the
others, but Emma and I got into Tech early senior year, and for
me heaven was at an end. I entered Geek Limbo. No more delicious
nooky in the lab-- more like cold pizza and jerking off in my
sleeping bag under a computer desk, alone with a dozen other guys
who also never got laid.
MAGGIE: So you're doomed by your perfect past. Paradise lost.
FUZZY: That's it.
MAGGIE: Bullshit. (pulls away, confronts him)
FUZZY: Bullshit? Why is it bullshit?
MAGGIE: I don't know why, but it always is. Try this: you're
a smart guy, Fuzzy. If you've formulated the problem, why haven't
you worked out a solution?
FUZZY: I can't work it out by myself. I need a Goddess. You.
MAGGIE: I'm not a Goddess for everyone. What do you expect me
FUZZY: Get me out of my rut.
MAGGIE: Get you out and rutting.
FUZZY: Is that wrong?
MAGGIE: Wrong? I don't know. But mistaken..? You like big breasts.
Mine are on top of my ample waist-- and my truly abundant butt.
For you, a Junoesque butt is a turn off. (lies face down on
FUZZY: Who told you that? (massages MAGGIE's back and buttocks)
MAGGIE: Selina did. But your massage confirmed it.
FUZZY: I didn't turn off! Or why would I be here?
MAGGIE: Fuzz, a Goddess knows when a man's not excited.
FUZZY: Well!-- I wasn't totally, it wasn't the place. I mean,
if I went berserk in a massage workshop, I'd be banned forever!
But I was off to a good start. Warm and connected.
MAGGIE: Warm's good. Better than hot, even.
FUZZY: It felt like this current of energy starting from the
outside, like deep in the earth, and it flows up from my toes
and through my loins and---
FUZZY: -- and through my heart and my hands and--
MAGGIE: You said "connected".
FUZZY: Yes. Connected. To you, and then it's-- you amplify it
and it comes back through me, deeper and stronger.
MAGGIE: Good, that's good. Go on. About "amplification".
FUZZY: Well, it's big. Bigger than anything from before, more
than I've ever felt safe with, and when I'm feeling the pull of
MAGGIE: Easy, Fuzz....
FUZZY: -- it's almost like falling off a cliff, into quicksand,
and I start to panic and--
MAGGIE: OK, whoa! That's enough, Fuzzy! Stop. (shakes him
off, grabbing his hands)
FUZZY: I stopped.
MAGGIE: Yeah. Thanks. (pause) Fuzzy, I'm a little surprised
by this, but I find myself liking you a lot better than I expected
to, and I want be your friend. I'd help you if I could. But Fuz?
FUZZY: I can pay.
MAGGIE: Good. But you can't do it with me. Or here.
FUZZY: I just want to break through what's keeping me lonely.
MAGGIE: I think you can. But although this place is a little
bit like your high school Paradise, there are rules, here. We
both signed off on them.
FUZZY: But lots of people experiment. There's even a class, for
the polymorphous perverse!
MAGGIE: Where they threw you out!
MAGGIE: Didn't they?
MAGGIE: Do you want to be banned forever? Paradise lost all over
again? Fuz, listen to me. I've changed my mind. You're not bullshitting:
you have the right formulation.
FUZZY: I do?
MAGGIE: We have proof! With the best will in the world, you damn
near just did to me what you did to Selina-- and I'm a trained
FUZZY: So, now what do I do?
MAGGIE: The thing is, I don't have a magic formula. But if what
you need to do is go back to the situation at 15 and work your
way to grown up--- I think I can give you a referral.
FUZZY: A referral?
MAGGIE: Sure-- Capitalism to the rescue. Hire the teen of your
FUZZY: (shocked) A prostitute?
MAGGIE: A rose by another name. A surrogate. You can afford it,
Fuzzy. Get yourself a certified healthy therapeutic sex surrogate,
body type to your specifications, and get to work. Paradise lost
may yet be found. Or at least a little guiltless fun.
FUZZY: You think it could be fun?
MAGGIE: Fun for you, Fuzz. Not fun for me.