Five Chinese Brothers Part 2

Emperor:  (claps hands) Servants of the bed chamber!

Lu & Shou: (stand up with bowed heads, come to Center stage facing Stage right – the emperor)

Lu: Yes, O most magnificent emperor.

Shou: Yes, o royal one?

Emperor: (with a flourish!) Where is the red robe that I wanted to wear this morning?

Lu: (apologetically and fearfully) Oh, your royalness.  It is ruined.

Shou: (apologetically and fearfully) A most unfortunate accident, your majesty.

Emperor:  What sort of accident?

Lu: The not very pretty chambermaid mistakenly thought that she could wash it in hot water and (shrugs) all the color came out.

Shou:  Alas, it is now a streaky pink and very wrinkled. It was all her fault.

Emperor: (thinks a moment) Off with her head.  (clap, clap) Guards, see to it.

Sung & Ming: (moving from Upstage center to center facing Stage right) (bowing to the emperor) (move to exit behind the screen)

Off stage sound of a whack.  All shudder.

Han & Chin: (enter bowing, but happy)  Please excuse us, Your majesty.

Emperor:  What now?

Chin: O, your royalness, we have finally lit the fire.  Would you like to come into the breakfast room for your royal breakfast?

Emperor:  Indeed. Guards, come with me. (exits behind screen)

Sha & Huang: (move throne to the wall stage right and exit behind the screen with the emperor)

All: exit behind screen


 Scene II.

Lights come on to seaside garden wall home of “poor” family.

Children: (come up from the stairs and are seated, mending a fish net, etc.)

Zian and Mah: (stand and move to center stage)  They look at their children and consider their attributes and their future.

Narrator 3: (standing down stage center) In the far away kingdom by the sea people also knew who was not important.  (pauses then exits behind screen)

Mah:  Zian, how could we have been so unfortunate?

Zian: What do you mean, Mah?  We have five fine children.  We are very fortunate.

Mah:  We have five children.  I don’t know where you got the idea of fine. Are they tall?

Zian: (pauses) No

Mah:  Are they handsome?

Zian: (pauses) No

Mah:  Are they smart?

Zian: (pauses) Not especially.

Mah:  Are they rich?

Zian:  (pauses) By no means.

Mah:  Are they fast?

Zian: (pauses) Are you kidding?

Mah:  Well, are they graceful?

Zian:  (annoyed) Well, you should know.  But, Mah, they are kind and loving children.

Mah:  You are right, Zian, but they just don’t have any qualities that anyone thinks are important.

Five Chinese Brothers