SCENE FOUR – ON THE WAY TO MARKET
Frontcloth or tabs.
FLESHCREEP enters disguised as a showman. The VILLAGERS enter and gather round. During the following dialogue JACK enters with DAISY.
F’CREEP Gather round, everybody. I am Dr Proctor, all things to all men. A maker of magic and entertainment to all the Kings and Queens in Europe. Doctor and healer to the nobility. Do you suffer from croop, backache, baldness or flatulence? This amazing secret recipe will cure all your ills. (shows a bottle) Removes coffee stains, warts and old wallpaper. Dr Proctor’s amazing herbal remedy. Only one shilling a bottle. I am a professor of anatomy, physiology, chemistry…
CHORUS And lunacy.
F’CREEP Do you suffer from indigestion, lumbago or short-sightedness?
CHORUS I suffer from a nagging wife.
F’CREEP No one has ever complained that my medicine has failed.
CHORUS No, they’re all dead.
F’CREEP I can show you my testimonials.
CHORUS Be careful, this is a family show.
CHILD Have you got anything for a penny, Mister?
F’CREEP A penny, eh? Let’s see it (the CHILD gives him the coin and FLESHCREEP bites it to see if it genuine) OK! How about a signed photo of Elton John? (the CHILD shakes his head) or this tin whistle? (the CHILD takes the tin whistle and marches around playing it as other children follow him in a follow-my-leader dance)
F’CREEP (to JACK) Can I tempt you boy?
JACK Errr… No thank you. I haven’t got any money.
F’CREEP No money, eh? Well what have you got to trade?
JACK Nothing. Well, nothing except for Daisy, our cow. I’m just about to take her to market.
F’CREEP Well, you’re in luck. I can save you the trouble of taking the cow all the way to market. I need a good animal to pull my cart. How much for your cow? A dozen bottles of my remedy? A tambourine? (JACK shakes his head) A skeleton? (JACK shakes his head) Now this might be just the thing for you (he takes JACK by the arm and walks down stage) Now I don’t want everyone to hear this but I think that cow is worth a lot of money. Take this bag of gold, it will change your life.
JACK A whole bag of gold? Just for Daisy? Mum will be over the moon! Hang on though, how do I know there is gold in this bag? It could just be a bag of beans.
F’CREEP I would never do such a thing! Look I’ll prove it to you.
FLESHCREEP turns round and takes one gold coin from his pocket but acts as though he has just taken it out of the bag.
See, full of gold treasure! You’d be incredibly rich! What do say? (FLESHCREEP dangles the pouch in front of JACK’s eyes) Golden treasure!
JACK Golden treasure?
F’CREEP Golden treasure! Incredibly rich!
JACK Incredibly rich?
F’CREEP Incredibly rich!
JACK But why would you want to help me?
MUSIC CUE 7
JACK What do you think boys and girls? Should I sell Daisy to him? Should I? Oh but we so need the money. Ok, I’ll do it!
F’CREEP Good boy. You know it makes sense.
FLESHCREEP hands over the bag. JACK puts the gold in his jacket and unseen to him FLESHCREEP removes his hood throws his head back laughing.
F’CREEP Stupid boy! They’ll never outsmart me. Now come on you silly old cow.
FLESHCREEP drags DAISY off laughing.
JACK Oh I do hope I’ve done the right thing. Now is the time for me to be a hero, just like the crazy magic lady said. I must find a way to defeat the giant and show Jill and her father that I am good enough to marry her.
MUSIC CUE 8