Velvet Eyes

SUE RYDER REVOLT by P Coltrane

INT: SUE RYDER SHOP, DAY

A grey haired old woman (Deirdre) is standing behind the counter serving a customer.

Customer
(Holding up a book)
Um, how much is this?

Deirdre
That will be twenty… a pound please.

Customer
Um!

Deirdre
It all goes to good causes dear.

The customer hands Deirdre a pound coin, picks up their item and walks away. As the customer turns their back Deirdre looks around to see if anyone is watching before putting the money down her top. As the customer is leaving the shop two more old ladies (Margaret and Grace) enter: each carrying straw shopping bags.

Deirdre
(Suspiciously)
Margaret, Grace. We don’t normally see you two in here on your day off.

Margaret
We need to talk Deirdre!

Grace
(Looking around)
Is Beryl about?

Deirdre
No, I’ve sent her on some errands.

Grace
Down the bakers is she?

Deirdre
Sorry?

Grace
You heard!

Before Deirdre can respond Margaret starts to talk.

Margaret
We’re not happy with the way things are in the shop! Are we Grace?

Grace
(Menacingly)
No Margaret! Not happy!

Deidre
So what’s the problem ladies?

Margaret
Oh I think you know exactly what the problem is.

Deirdre
(Shaking her head)
Not really.

Margaret
I found this in the bin on Friday.

Margaret produces a screwed-up wrapper from her pocket and tosses it onto the counter

Margaret
We want to know why every time we are in, there is nothing in the kitchen but Garibaldis and Asda own brand tea bags, but after your shift we keep finding evidence that you’ve been on the chocolate fingers and knocking back the Twinnings. And what’s all this.
(Pointing to the plate on the counter)
Take a look Grace

Without breaking eye contact with Deirdre, Grace dabs her little finger in the crumbs on the plate and then lightly touches it on the tip of her tongue.

Grace
Jamaican Brown. McVitie’s ginger cake I recon. High Street value…150.

Margaret
£1,50 Margaret. You’ve got expensive tastes haven’t you? Jamaican Ginger Cake and Twinnings. You got the vicar coming round or something?

Deirdre
(Trying to sound casual)
I brought that in from home?

Margaret
Don’t play games with us Deirdre. After you and Beryl have been in takings are always down by at least 10%, the place reeks of cinnamon and then surprise, surprise
(Flicking Deidre’s scarf)
Deirdre turns up with another new neckerchief.

Deirdre
This was a present from my husband.

Margaret
Recons her husband got it for her Grace. What do you think?

Grace
(Menacing and sarcastically)
He sounds like a very generous man.

Deirdre
You’re both mad! Time for a fresh HRT patch ladies, you’re delusional.

Margaret
Is that right?

Deidre
And anyway I’m in charge and I’ll run this shop however I see fit.

Margaret
We thought you might say that so we’ve got a little something for you.

 

They both reach into their bags and retrieve a spray perfume bottle.

Deidre
What’s going on? What have you got in there?

Margaret
Just a little something we picked up in Barnardos: Its called Besotted by Katie Price.

Deirdre
(Starting to panic)
But that’s for whores! Keep it away form me. Keep it away!

Margaret
That’s right. And you’re going to get it all over your boat race if you don’t do what we say.

Margaret gets a letter out of her inside pocket and drops it on the counter.

Margaret
Sign this.

Deirdre
What is it?

Margaret
It’s a letter to head office. It says that you’re stepping down as manager and putting me in charge.

Deirdre
You must be joking. I’m not signing that.

As she pushes the letter away a forth old lady (Beryl) enters the shop very slowly from a back door out of sight of Grace. She side steps over to a small table and starts to reach for a tray of cakes. At that moment Margaret and Deirdre notice her.

Deirdre
GET THE FONDANCE OUT OF HERE BERYL!!

Margaret
GRACE!!!... BERYL 6 o’clock!

Grace spins round and points the perfume she is holding at Beryl.

Grace
Don’t even think about it! Or I’ll cover you in this shit I swear.

Beryl stops dead in her tracks and looks over at Deirdre for advice.

Deirdre
Let it go Beryl it’s not worth it.

Beryl starts to hold her hands up as she back away from the cakes.

Grace
That’s right… I always knew you never had it in you.

Margaret
(Still pointing her perfume at and looking at Deirdre)
Keep it under control Grace! We’re here to do a job.
(Pushing the letter back to Deirdre)
Now sign it.

Deirdre
You don’t get me that easily. Spray me, I don’t care!

Grace
Have we got a hero over there Margaret?

Margaret
No! I’ve got it covered.
(Margaret starts to retrieve something from her pocket)
I thought you might show some resistance, so I brought this as well.

Margaret pulls out a second bottle of perfume from her inside pocket.

Deirdre
What’s that?

Margaret
It’s Kerry Katona’s Outrageous.

Deirdre
But that’s been banned!

Margaret
Correct-a-mundo. They say it rots your nose. Now what’s it going to be?

Deirdre
(Leaning down to sign the letter)
You won’t get away with this!

After she finishes signing the letter Deirdre pushes is across the table to Margaret.

Margaret
(Picking up the letter and putting it away)
Right then! I think you two can take the rest of the day off; Grace and I have got a few things to sort out. There’s going to be a few changes round here.

As Deirdre and Beryl leave the shop a customer enters and starts to look around.

Margaret
Grace! Get the kettle on and crack out that Twinnings.

As Grace walks out to put the kettle on the customer walks up to the counter.

Customer
(Holding up a book)
Um, how much is this?

Margaret
That will be twenty… a pound please.

Customer
Um!

Margaret
It all goes to good causes dear.

The customer hands Margaret a pound coin, picks up their item and walks away. As the customer turns their back Margaret looks around to see if anyone is watching before putting the money down her top.

Margaret
(Starting to walk off)
Grace! I need you to pop down the bakers for me.

END

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