Excerpt from ”Intensifying Hearts & Dreams” – season 17, episode 70

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Ext: hill at the edge of Doomtown

Sunset. Two MYSTERY MASKS are sitting next to each other, looking serenely at the town during a break in their duties.

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Man oh man… It’s getting crazier and crazier up in here. As if the whole mess surrounding FRANK‘s funeral wasn’t enough, with the drunken fist fight that erupted at the reception between THE MAYOR and ANGÉL GABRIÉL… Now we got ghost trees and weird-ass pianos popping into existence all over the place?

 

The other MASK shrugs noncommittally.

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

What, you don’t find it weird? The spooky, transparent trees aren’t so bad I guess… But great clusters of broken, self-playing pianos? Just erupting out of nowhere, out in the street as well as indoors? Pianos that don’t even play anything coherent, just short loops of music while a key or two is spastically depressed? Man, not only is it unnerving, but the sound gets really irritating after a while. I mean, I’m glad the boss, GMF, managed to defeat all his enemies, even FRANK. And we were told to expect odd phenomena owing to the increasing leakage from that other world. But this town is changing, dude… Don’t you think?

 

The other MASK looks the other way.

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

No offense, bro, but I miss my regular partner, 28A. He always knows what to say when I’m feeling down in the dumps. Hope he gets back from the world on the other side of The Crevice soon. I wanted to come along on the mission, but his GRAND MAGIC FÜHRERNESS said no. I don’t get it, us MASKS are always supposed to work in pairs, it’s always been that way, but every time there’s a mission to the other side, THE MAYOR just sends 28A off on his own.

 

The other MASK hums softly.

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Gonna be straight with you here, dude. Note the pun. My partner always helps me out when I’m feeling insecure about my love life. And he’s not here, so you gotta give me advice right now. You dig?

 

The other MASK coughs.

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Basically the thing is this. GMF THE MAYOR has this girlfriend, right? Name of PAULETTE. You know who I’m talking about? She’s related to PASTOR JING but she’s on our side for some reason. Just one eye, dark hair, freckles, really clever and charming… Ring a bell?

 

The other MASK moves his head subtly in a way that could be interpreted as a nod.

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Ah, so you do know about her. I’m just gonna say it… I love her. She’s just so charismatic and cool.

(Laughs)

Why am I trusting you with this stuff anyway? It’s the boss’s lady we’re talking about… How do I know you’re not gonna spill the beans?

 

The other MASK scratches his ankle.

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Well, we’re all used to not really knowing each other, I guess. Part of the job, after all, the whole MYSTERY MASK organisation being based on the rule that no one is allowed to know who anyone else is. Wait, why am I explaining this? It isn’t as if you don’t already know this stuff, or there’s an invisible audience to whom it needs to be hamfistedly explained…

 

The sound effect of a rimshot is played. The other MASK says nothing.

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Anyway. Me and 28A, we’ve talked over every possible angle on this. It’s impossible, it’s a pipe dream, it ain’t gonna happen, at best it’ll get me killed, at worst it’ll get me kicked out of the gang. But I guess I hoped in my subconciousness that you, new friend, might have something novel to say on this matter. Me – lowly henchman, and her – the boss’s sweetheart; an impossible love story. So what have you got?

 

The other MASK says nothing.

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Hey! Dude! I’m opening my heart to you here, don’t be a jerk!

 

MYSTERY FRASK

Oh, I apologise. I wasn’t paying attention at all. Thinking about fabric softener.

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

What? Fuck’s sake, man. Why you gotta be like that? We’re gonna be stationed together until my partner gets back, can’t we at least make some small talk?

 

MYSTERY FRASK

Oh, of course. Let’s see… You were talking about… Insect babies…? Glow-in-the-dark pants?

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Don’t fucking do that… Don’t pretend you know what I was talking about when you haven’t got a clue! So rude. No, I’m talking about the fact that I’m head-over-heels in love with PAULETTE, who never leaves the side of THE MAYOR, or GMF if you prefer!

 

MYSTERY FRASK

Ah, the love. I know one or two things about the love between people.

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Yeah that’s good to hear you flipping excentric. So what do you say? Is there any angle where I get to love up the boss’s girlfriend and come out smelling like not-killed-or-fired?

 

MYSTERY FRASK

Aha, I percieve the nature of your quandary. Do you know, I’ve never considered this unique permutation of entaglements. It is strange to think that one hypothetical instance of love might not be actualised because one of the parties is involved with a third party. What an unusual thought.

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Okay… You’re taking the academic approach, thinking about the situation in the abstract. That might not be too bad… The advice I get from 28A is usually more along the lines of, ”Forget it. I’ve talked to PAULETTE one on one many times, and she is absolutely 100% devoted to GRAND MAGIC FÜHRER, no lie. And even if she weren’t, she really isn’t the type to settle down anyway. It’s dead in the water, brother in masks”.

 

MYSTERY FRASK

Now that I think about it, I once found an online purveyor of pornography… That must be very rare, putting pornography online. It was called ”dubya dubya dubya dot girls with manboobs dot com”. Doesn’t that seem like a very interesting fetish?

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

You’re losing me, bro. Manboobs?

 

MYSTERY FRASK

Come to think of it, I did see a headline in today’s local news rag… ”Drugs sold openly at cemetary”. That’s some kind of dastardly behaviour, isn’t it?

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Huh??? What??? What does that have to do with anything?

 

MYSTERY FRASK

Well, they say all good things come in threes, right?

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Good things… Again, what??? We were talking about me and PAULE-

 

MYSTERY FRASK

Oh, maybe it was bad things? None of this is possible in real life.

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Hey! Earth to you!!! We were having a serious conversation about ME and you suddenly started yapping about-

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B is interrupted when a self-playing piano suddenly comes into existence right next to him!

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

AAAH JESUS DOUBLE CHRIST!!!

 

The piano starts playing its repetitive melody. The ”self-playing” mechanism being broken, only a couple of keys are sporadically depressed, with no relation to the music.

MYSTERY FRASK

Oho, what a lovely melody. Might even inspire a traveller to sing.

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

What is it with these goddamn pianos, man??? Freaks me the shit out!

 

MYSRERY FRASK

(Singing)

I’m in the eye of the storm-

A demented wind, blowing smoke in my eyes-

Blowing straight up my mind-

And the mud all over the hillside-

It reminds me of my new reality-

Spread it out before me-

No question now.

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Stop fucking singing! There isn’t even a real melody!

 

MYSTERY FRASK

I thought the mood called for something somber, but you’d rather hear one of my originals? Well then:

My mind-twiddling spine-

Safe in the backpack of me and mine-

Listens to all of the notions I say-

Brings peace to the dogs in the primitive bay.

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

You’re the original, man! You are out of this world. Ha ha ha! Just my flipping luck, my temp is a fucking nutbar.

 

MYSTERY FRASK

To get back to the point, if there are new age people who don’t believe in bacteria, are there old time people who don’t believe in vitamins?

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

You should be the fucking NO.1 MYSTERY MASK, man! You really put the MYSTERY in MYSTERY MASK, get it??? Ha ha ha! I’m imagining commercials with a little cartoon of you running around, ”Choose MYSTERY MASK for a truly ridiculous criminal experience! We employ the finest in completely bonkers shady henchmen!” Ha ha ha, oh man, forget about PAULETTE, you’re my new favourite.

 

MYSTERY FRASK

I’m invited into the uncomfortable love triangle, then?

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Yeah why the hell not brother.

 

MYSTERY FRASK

We’ll make a love quadrangle of you yet! And now to plug the popper on this singular starship.

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Ha ha what

 

MYSTERY FRASK

This has been fun and enlightening. I shall even drop in on you again! The short break from all the rustling and ghostbustlening of the disastruous calamitous situation has done me the most good yet this week. My last words to you, when next you see PAULETTE, tell her I said hi and that I know she’s still on my side. It doesn’t matter if she’s hedging her bets or trying to double play me, I will advance the agenda to the next stage soon, and if you truly care about this girl, you’ll warn her to be ready. I know she’ll find the will deep within herself to draw her sword and protect me in the end. She is my true ally. Remember – We shall meet again some sunny… Sunday… Rainy… Rainday! We shall meet again some rainday. And now to retreat along the radio lines-

 

There is the sound of psychological squelching as a presence departs MYSTERY MASK NO. 10A’s body. The host is reeling.

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Hey! What are you talking about? What’s happening?

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 10A

Jesus, what a mindfuck! Where are we, what time is it? Have I missed a whole day???

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

What do you mean, missed? We were just talking… Well, you were talking nonsense.

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 10A

Duuude! For real dude, this is wild… I think I just had some kind of mental breakdown. This is cool, man! It’s like, spiritual and shit! It’s like, a fresh, natural high! Like, a brain high right into my brain and shit, straight outta the cosmic zone, ha ha ha… Bra I’m stoned~

 

MYSTERY MASK NO. 28B

Out of the frying pan, into the dumbass…

 

FYLOSO

And that’s all for now, folks!

 

Comical trumpet music plays.

(CONT)

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One thought on “Excerpt from ”Intensifying Hearts & Dreams” – season 17, episode 70

  1. Pingback: Supplementary Material from ”Intensifying Hearts & Dreams”, season 17 | a truth called nothing

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