I used to love the dark
Night was my lover and bad news friend
My cloak, my excuse
I was never a recluse
Why did this affair have to end?
Shadow at the end of my bed
Watching me sleep
Clawing at my dreams
You haven’t hurt me –yet
Shadow person, what’s your scheme?
J: Rory man, what is this crap? You were supposed to write a nice little love song. About a summer’s evening.
R: Sorry, Jake, it just wasn’t coming. I wasn’t feeling it.
J: And the song before this? About, let me see, how did you put it- “eyes worming into the back of my head, eating my brain, stealing my sanity”? This is shit, Rory, shit!
R: Get off my back, man! THIS is how I feel now, THIS is the kind of songwriter I am!
J: What happened to you, the best-selling love songster of 2011? You gonna throw that all away to become some goth twink? You think your fans are gonna let you? Remember when Garth Brooks became Chris Gains? Is HE still around?
R: [spooked] Is who still around? Is it here? Did you see it?
J: It? What? I was talking about Garth Brooks. What are you on?
R: Nothing! I – I just haven’t been sleeping well lately.
J: Yeah, your shit songs kinda gave that away. OK, Rory. Listen to me. We need to figure this out. What is going on?
R: Nothing! I just-
J: Rory! I’ve been your agent for 7 years now. We’re friends, right? Right. So tell me!
R: [whispers] it’s been following me, Jake. I used to see it only at night, but it’s everywhere now! I don’t know what it wants from me!
J: What’s following you, Rory? A fan? Do you have a stalker? This is a good thing! Every pop star wants a stalker! Great publicity!
J: I can get you bodyguards! We can do a story for ET!
R: NO! Not a stalker! Not human! It’s a shadow. It’s evil. I-I think it wants to eat my soul. Or something…I don’t know what it wants, but it’s not good! I’m scared, Jake!
J: You’re NOT on anything? Here, let me give you something…
R: I need to be alert! I need my wits about me! Man, I wish I could make the dread go away…
J: I can do that! Here, take one of these…
R: No! I can’t relax for a second! Not even during the day! I felt it yesterday at the deli! And the day before, I saw it in an alley as I was driving past! And in the studio, and, and–
J: What are you telling me? Tell me exactly.
R: I can’t make out any features. It’s just a shape. Like a human, but not. It just stands there, watching me. It radiates pure hate and evil.
J: D-does it lo-look l-like that?
[a third voice, a scratchy, hoarse voice, joins in]Aahh! Stop it! Stop screaming! Pull yourselves together! Geez! Why does everyone always do that?
R: It’s you! You’re the thing! Th-the shadow person!
S: Yes,yes! It’s me! Just calm down!
J: My god, it’s hideous! I’ve never wanted my mommy so much! Hold me!
S: Guys! [J and R let out a little scream] Wait! I know my presence is unnerving…
R: You got any extra underwear in here, Jake?
J: Just one, and I call dibs!
S: I can’t help that I emit pure evil. I was born that way. I’m not all bad. Really.
R: Wh-what do you want? What are you going to do to me? Are you going to suck out my soul?
S: What? No, of course not! Well, normally I would, actually. But not you. See, I need some help.
R: Help? From me? What kind of help?
S: I brought my guitar… let me play for you. [begins strumming]
J: You want to be a musician?
S: I AM a musician. I want to be a pop star!
J: A rock star?
S: No, a pop star! A balladeer! A new Richard Marx!
R: But I’m the new Richard Marx! You can be the new Clay Aiken-
S: Ew! I don’t want-
J: Shut up you two. Look- uh, what’s your name?
J: Sandy? Sandy, you can’t be a pop star…
S: But you haven’t even heard me yet! I got a real sweet one about a first kiss. It’s got puppies!
J: Shush! You can’t be a pop star because you’re too dark!
S: Oh, so you want to bring race into this?
J: Don’t play that card with me! I mean being a pop star is all about image! Do you even show up on film?
S: Uh, I…
J: And no one’s gonna get all warm and fuzzy and moist listening to you! They’re just gonna want to slit their wrists!
R: Take it easy, man! Don’t get him mad!
J: or what? He’s gonna slurp out my soul with an eyeball chaser?
S: [sulkily] I could, you know.
J: I don’t think so! You need to make it in this biz and going around de-souling music agents and the new Richard Marx is gonna stop your career before it even starts!
S: You just said I wouldn’t have a career anyway, so what’s to stop me?
J: I said you couldn’t be a pop star. But you could be a rock star! A real old-school one. The new Marilyn Manson!
R: Yeah! What’s he doing lately? It’s all you, baby!
S: But, but…Puppies…
J: Dead puppies! Great! Gotta change your name tho…Santos…Seraphim…Scarus…
S: No nonono NO! I want to sing love songs! I want to sing about tender caresses and soft rain and eyelashes on my cheek!
R: He’s right, Jake! All that sweet stuff, but with an industrial, atonal accompaniment! This’ll be great!
J: Do you think so? I don’t know…
S: Yes! This feels so right!
R: Can I write some songs for you? I want to be a part of this new sound! We’ll call it, uh, Dark Love?
S: Sweet Metal?
S: What did you just say?
J: I said Crap! ‘Cause that’s what it’s gonna be! You gotta go dark, all the way! That’s what you are, you piece of—
R: Jake shut up!
S: You dare call my music crap! My SOUND crap?
J: You don’t have a ‘sound’. You have Crap! Not even anything as pungent as Shit! Just plain old, tepid, go nowhere, no one will even know it exists, crap! Rory here makes shit and it sells like crazy! You’ll just have a lonely MySpace page no one will ever even find!
R: Shit? You called my music shit? I’ve made you so much money you should rename that island Rory’s Vocal Polyps because that’s what I got for singing for you!
J: That’s my point! You make me money! This guy here—
R: Sandy, you hungry?
R: Well lunch is on me.
J: What? Me? I’m an agent! I only have a little withered up soul! You don’t want—[blood-curdling scream]
S: [slurp] He wasn’t kidding. Not much soul there. Yet still satisfying.