Footsteps of Crushed Spirits

This play is a collection of monologues based on true untold stories. The location is in South Africa and the issue of AIDS is addressed throughout the play as one of the many issues. A community struggles to find hope within themselves, because of the many bad influences there are as a young teen. Things such as gangs and violence tend to overpower them. These monologues create suspense as to why people make the decisions that they do. Another important topic that these monologues address is human rights. It seems as if human rights have not been modified to fit the basic needs of society. That is expressed through the struggle to afford medicine for diseases (AIDS) and treatment to at least prevent the problem from increasing. Through it all, the main character, Bobby is faced with a dilemma. It becomes a test of his morals to figure out what he should do, considering he is only a teen. It is well known that teens are often perceived as not being able to make their own decisions. Will Bobby let common morals control his thoughts or take the initiative to take matters into his own hands? 
Kimberly Mae: A sweet girl from next door who faces many struggles as a rape victim.

Bobby: A young male who remains in school while he also faces struggles and falls in love with his long lost sister.

Grandma Mali: The guardian of Kimberly Mae, who raised her since her mother died.

Shaun: A young man who is a victim of gang violence. Shaun got himself into debt trouble to their leader, Terk.

Terk: A notorious leader of the Numbers Gang who has two children that he neglects to endorse his wealth.

Lady Sam: Known for being “The Crazy Lady” of the neighborhood with influential spiritual powers.

Barbara: A volunteer worker for at the Treatment Act Campaign that provides medicine for AIDS in places like Africa.

Act 1, Scene 1

(Writing on board for meeting. Chairs set up like a classroom writing on a board. Talking to self while taking off Red Jacket.)
I don’t know what to say to these people.
(Puts coat on back of chair and writes TAC in a large format on board and sighs deeply.)
I don’t understand why they chose me, of all people, to be a representative. They even gave me a fake name.
(Drops chalk angrily on ledge with a questioning voice.)
Who’s Barbara.
(Plays with nametag.)
Cheap old thing. They didn’t even have enough money to buy me a nametag with my real name on it.
(Pause. Guest knocking at the door.)
Who’s there?
(Sounds of approaching footsteps.)
Oh, hello there.
(Extends hand for shake but slowly pulls back hand in redemption. Forces a smile.)
My name is...
(Pause and looks down.)
My last name? Conner. I am a representative for TAC, otherwise known as the Treatment Action Campaign.
(Plain Voice)
We work as a unit to help end AIDS here in Africa. We also work with other organizations on the side. We provide medicine, education and several other things to help protect the community.
(Pause and searches in desk for a pen.)
I’m sorry I cannot release confidential information.
(Pause and closes drawer.)
No, I do not know of a girl named Kim.
(Pause and puts on lotion from desk on hands.)
Oh wait, you mean Terk’s lost child. Sure, I know of her.
(Pause. Face begins to turn ashen. Sits down and types on computer.)
What do you mean she was raped?
(Pause with intense music.)
By whom?
(Pause and stops typing.)
You mean... from the Numbers Gang?
(Pause and fidgets with name tag.)
Are you sure that Shaun was the one who raped Kim?
(Deep sigh)
I’m sorry, I have to leave.
(In a pleading rush grabs coat from back of the chair.)
Please don’t tell anyone about this. Don’t release that to anyone Miss..
(Pause and nods head)
Miss Wright.
Can you do me a favor?
(Points outside in the direction of the windows.)
Go tell one of the officials that I have a family emergency.
(Runs out of room)
Act 1, Scene 2

(Speaking to mirror)
Pull yourself together, Shaun.
(Deep sigh)
Maybe it’s the way I look that makes people suspicious. Maybe it’s just that.
(Pause and puts hand on sink.)
Yeah. If I stop looking so guilty, then
(Pointing to self.)
I can get a job. I didn’t mean to rape that little girl- but I know what would’ve happened if I didn’t. I feel bad that she may have HIV, but there’s nothing I can do about that now. I have one bottle of these medications left, and I’m not gonna waste it on some guilt. I figure,
(Pause while using hands as a demonstration.)
if I cut each pill into halves, I can have enough to last me until TAC gets back. Then again, if they find out what I did, they might hang me.
(Closes eyes for a brief moment and then stares at mirror again.)
That’s why I can’t go to the protest, because they might protest against me.
(Accidentally knocks mouth wash over and it spills on the floor.)
Damn! Now I have to clean this up. He gave this devil to me.
(Angrily speaking while using a towel to clean up mouth wash.)
He gave me this pain in the ass- and now I have to hide my blood from those who I love. This devil’s disease. I should give it to his entire family to see how it feels. I’m sick of him being the dominant one. I’m sick of being second best to him. Ever since that day he pushed me down, he’s always been on top. I was too much of a punk to fight back. I was taught to win by any means, but fighting wasn’t needed. But I’m gonna make sure he’s never on top again. I’ll kill him like how he mentally killed me as I did Kim. She lives in East London and we’re miles away just killing her softly. Terk raped me and made me rape Kim. I had no other option. He would have killed my entire family if I hadn’t.
(Sobs briefly and throws towel far while putting a hand on his forehead.)
Kim’s innocence is gone, my mind is gone. The Numbers Gang, I hate Terk for creating it. And through it all, he only gains. What did Terk lose? Nothing. So guess what? Now he’s gonna lose his life. If AIDS doesn’t kill him, then I will.
(Picks up broken glass, piece by piece, examining slowly. Fade out.)
Act 1, Scene 3
(Sitting down behind a tree.)
“Kimberly Mae, where are you?”
(Laughs at herself.)
This woman keeps calling me, I swear that mother-
(Pause and change of facial expression.)
grandmother of mine has issues. I don’t want her to be my grandmother. She does a horrible job at it. Why would she tell the block of how I was raped? Now no one will talk to me, because they think I can’t handle myself like a lady. Grannie keeps stressing me out about when I have nose bleeds. I can’t help my nose bleeds. I don’t have anything. I don’t care what TAC or any of them people say. I don’t know why Grannie trusts them. I don’t know why I trust anybody.
(Picks at tree by peeling some chunks from it.)
So what she told the police about the guy who raped me? What are they going to do? They can’t give me any medication. They probably would be too afraid to see my blood.
(Shivers using hands while talking.)
I need to stay on my feet. As long I don’t run into Terk again. I know Terk had something to do with this. He thinks I don’t remember my Mother. That was back before he decided to join that gang. If it weren’t for the gang in the first place, then my Momma would still be here. The police never gave a damn about us. If the police did their job, maybe Momma and I would be happy. Them police people got too much praise. All they ever cares about is school. Always wanna be in the mix of making school less important for girls than for boys. That’s all they ever talk about is the danger of going to school, but never the dangers of living.
(Picks up pocket knife.)
Well maybe I should try to kill myself, so Grannie can stop worrying me about being a lady, and the world can go on living without me.
Act 2, Scene 1
(Tying shoe laces while preparing for school.)
(Mimicking his father.)
“You gotta go to school Bobby, ain’t no messin’ round with these fast girls.” All I hear. A hypocrite is what he is.
(Grips the laces harder as he ties them.)
All he does all day is hurt peoples. He act like I don’t see what he be doing.
(Puts on dog tag)
This piece of crap.
(Reads words on dog tag.)
“To Bobby: He who learns, teaches.”
(Thinks for a moment.)
Oh yea, well if that’s true, I hope he does a horrible job at teaching me. The only thing he’s taught me is how NOT to treat a woman. And the thinks I don’t see the medicine in the bathroom cabinet. Yea, it’s all there. Sometimes I wish he would die. But that would bring bad karma. I swear that’s the only thing that keeps me going. Karma and how it comes back around. I can’t wait till karma bites my dad in the ass. He deserves it. But I’ll never show my hatred for him. It would be too disrespectful. And that’s about the only good thing Terk has ever done for me. Is teach me to be respectful. I respectfully think he’s a piece of dirt on my life. I think I understand why Mom left now. Always hitting her.
(Tears up)
Momma, why didn’t you take me with you when you left? Or maybe he made you leave me. I don’t know for sure. But believe me when I say, I will find out.
(Looks at dog tag.)
I will find out.
( Puts on book bag and runs to school.)
Act 2, Scene 2
(Speaking to a man covered in a long black cloak.)
I was sent by the lords of Africa to deliver the prophet's message. It is here where I was sent. This duty to fulfill.
(Gets down on one knee. Pulls out beaded bracelet.)
This bracelet, blessed upon the heavens gives me the power to control the positive energy within human beings. It will stem a vibe through anyone weak enough to put on the bracelet.
(Bows head)
Dear lords of our sanctuary, I here by wish that I can be the messenger in this journey. It is heard that Kimberly Mae was the chosen one. She shall wear this bracelet. Her gift is courage of self healing. Anyone else who wears this shall be punished in the name of bravery to kill through self destruction. The sins that are committed shall be considered most abrupt, dishonoring and foul. Thank you, my dear lords of nature.
(Sprinkles powder among bracelet)
Hither there shadows, off we go to the Bird's tree. 

Act 2, Scene 3
(Throwing pebbles along the river.)
(With excitement)
Oh, that was a nice one. I bet Kim couldn’t beat that for the world. I just wish she was here to see me do it. (Pause)
I hope she’s okay. I swear she was up to nothing but trouble since the start. Ever since that intruder.
(Picks up rock and thrusts it at a tree)
Damn fools. I can’t save her anymore. I can’t help her. I just, can’t. How does she expect me to support her as a friend, when she can’t even support herself as a person? She won’t even accept help from these nice people that come here. I don’t understand her. We used to be the best of friends.
(Picks up a second rock and holds in hand while talking calmly.)
I remember when we used to run home from school together, so the gangsters wouldn’t catch us. We used to have fun being on the brinks of danger and live without a care. Kim was fearless, and I loved her for that. She blended in perfectly with the guys. That’s why we could be best friends and everyone was cool with it. Now I barely even know her. I don’t know what’s gotten in her head or if this disease is taking over. I wanna find the guy that changed her. That took my best friend away from me.
(Throws rock along the river bank)
That guy took my best friend away from me and I don’t understand why. She never hurt nobody, but people always hurting her. I guess that’s the way of life sometimes. 

Act 2, Scene 4
(Looks to the sky while sitting beneath a tree.)
What’s that?
(Plays in dirt and pulls out a bracelet.)
I like the way it looks.
(Shows it in the moon light and pulls sleeve over it. Pulls a nail filer from back pocket and files nails.)
“Momma, I don’t know where you are up there, but I’m sure you hear me screaming inside from down here. I know that you love me and didn’t want me to end up this way. But, I feel that there’s something I have to do. I hope you don’t hate me for it, but you don’t understand how Terk, my father, has changed. He’s an animal.
(Pause and throws nail filer far.)
I want him dead. I don’t care that he helped create me. This isn’t even my Dad anymore. When you married him, his name was Thomas Zinabe. Now he’s adopted the gang name Terk. And I hate Terk.
(Crying angrily while pulling grass out of the earth.)
I want him dead and below me. I want him to burn in hell. I hope that you protect me from this pain I will endure, but one thing’s for sure. I won’t allow him to rape another like his gang friend did me. There’s no excuse. The block knows of how that guy was raped, and then he came and raped me. It’s all Terk’s fault. He’s supposed to protect me.”
(Lays down on grass and falls asleep under tree.)
Act 3, Scene 1
(Playing checkers with father.)
Yeah Terk, there’s this girl I like. I mean, father. But anyway, she’s a really sweet girl. Where did I meet her?
(Eyebrows Raise)
At school of course. She sits next to me in Literature sometimes. The thing I really love about her is her laugh.
(Looks at Terk)
No, I'm not in love with her-
yet. She really fits in with the guys too. Not afraid of being herself. Then on top of that, she loves soccer just as much as I do. I don't know, Pa. I've never been in love before, but I wouldn't mind finding out. No, she's not a fast girl. Damn, I can't even have love for my best friend? Yeah, she's my best friend now. I just can't help it. She isn't like the other girls.
I can't wipe the smile off of my face. She's amazing. Not just for her body either- though I wouldn't mind…
(Drifts off into thought)
But no, I wouldn't use her like that. She says she lost her Momma, and she lives with her Grannie. She refused to tell me about her father. Her skin is like mine, soft and caramel. Her eyes are almond shaped. Again, like mine. It's funny how people mistake her for my sister.
(With more excitement.)
Yeah! Really, they think we're related!
Her name? Oh, her name is Kim. Kimberly Mae, I think.
(Checkers board falls on ground.)
(Picks up pieces confusingly.)
Act 3, Scene 2
(Examines body in mirror.)
(Grabs chest)
Yeah, remember when he grabbed you there? And held you down with all of his strength.
That bloody bastard. Where ever he is, I hope he knows that revenge is coming. I know he a part of that Numbers Gang. He was speaking that crazy language to his friend. I saw him the other day and he pretended like he didn’t know me.
Little does he know, what goes around, comes around. So I won’t kill him, but he won’t break me down, just because he … did what he did to me. I have to learn to forgive him. I was waiting to get my virginity over and done with. So now, I don’t have to go through it again. No one else can take it from me, because it’s already gone. I was bound to get raped. Especially with a body like this.
(Turns head around to see lower back.)
(Faces the mirror again.)
My virginity is gone, and I like it that way. It didn’t happen in a horrible way either. Maybe it wasn’t rape and I was just asking for it the whole time. I mean, he wasn’t completely ugly or nasty, I just wasn’t interested. And he was sweet about it too. People normally slap you for resisting sex. But no, he didn’t hit my face. After a while I stopped resisting.
(Looks at bruises on neck.)
And these bruises will heal fast. I can just say I got hit during soccer practice, and then maybe everyone will forget about it. I hope Bobby doesn’t see the marks though, because then he’d ask questions. But I don’t want to tell him the truth. I’m supposed to meet his father tomorrow. But not with my body looking like this. Maybe if I stuff my bra a little bit, and wear a skirt, he will be distracted from my neck and focus more on my body.
(Looks at bruises one more time.)
This is gonna hurt...
(Puts an ice pack on neck and runs bath water.)
Act 4, Scene 1
(Looks through photographs on desk.)
Look officer, I don’t know nothing about no girl named Kim. I don’t care if your records say she’s my daughter. The hoe lived with her mama. Her mama dead, and no I ain’t kill her. I went on trial for that already. Anything else you want to interrogate me about?
(Pause. Feels on clothes in plastic bag.)
Look, I am not responsible for nobody else’s actions. I’m not a gang banger.
(Pause and looks at clothes.)
What you mean? I don’t know nothing bout no 666 on somebody clothing.
The numbers on my jacket? That say 555. My home address.
Look, I have a bad memory, I can’t be remembering where I live all the time. I have more important things to worry about.
(Short Pause)
What do you mean like what?  If you really was the Police, you would knows I have AIDS.
(Short Pause)
I had it as a child. My mother gave it to me. That’s why I don’t like women.
(Short Pause)
No, I’m not sexist, and I did not kill Kim.
(Long Pause)
Okay so? Yes, I had sexual relations with Kim’s mom, but that was years ago. And I ain’t the father of that bitch.
(Short Pause)
I’m sorry officer, I didn’t mean to swear. I just get so annoyed with women. All their dumb mistakes.
(Short Pause)
You wanna know my real name?
(Long Pause)
(Short Pause)
Okay, so your records say different. Nobody calls me by my real name.
(Short Pause)
(Looks angrily at officer and stands up while slamming his fists on the desk.)
Don’t nobody call me Thomas Zinabe but my mother, and that’s how it’s gonna stay.
(Knocks table down.)
I don’t care if you’re a lady. Call me that again, and I’ll kill you.
(Spits in officer’s face and runs. Soon is shot by near by police man.)

Act 4, Scene 2
(Speaking to class.)
Hey everyone, most of you know me as Bobby.
(Nervously waves to class.)
I don’t know many of you that well, but the teacher insisted I read you this letter about what’s been going on in my life. She says everyone will do it eventually, but I’m the first to go. So here it is
(Clears throat and pulls folded note from back pocket.)
“Lately I’ve been contemplating what to do with my life. These past two months have been the hardest for me. (Pause)
And I know we all are in pain from Kim’s journey to heaven. I try to hold back tears, because she was my best friend, brother and like a girlfriend and
(Looks up at class.) … (Looks down at paper.)
she wouldn’t want me to cry. But the hardest part of it all was that she was gone before I could - say goodbye. Before I even rescue her from my own father, Terk. Turns out that was her father also. My dad let some guy in his gang rape my sister.
(Clenches fist)
So, I gave revenge to him and his friends. They took the beads I wear around my wrist. I call them a form of hope sometimes. That’s the only way I feel Kim here with me. I can barely look at myself in the mirror. I’m a monster who murdered my father.
(Long pause and licks lips.)
After the trial was over, I was found not guilty, and even if I was found guilty, I would feel no remorse. I don’t let people get by on things they shouldn’t. I’m alone now. I have no friends and everyone thinks I’m crazy. Well, I’m not. I’m just afraid.
Afraid that everyone will turn on me. No one even looks me in my face anymore. I thought I was a hero. I gave my own father punishment for something that would go unnoticed by the police. I thought I was making a difference.
But I realize now that I was just a coward. But I’m not alone. I’m sure some of you have problems in your life too.
(Long nervous pause. Swallows slowly and shakes a little.)
I don’t blame any of you if you are afraid of me. I haven’t been in school for a month, so I know that I have a lot of work to catch up on. I’m trying to keep my composure, but it’s hard when no one believes you. These beads never had power. I think it was me all along. These beads changed Kim for the better. I wish you guys could have seen how happy she was. I was in love with her. Her everything. But now she’s not here. It feels like no one is. I live alone, with no family. I had to make a hard decision. I felt that there would never be any justice for Kim. I did what I thought was right.
So my question to all of you is, what would you do if you were in my shoes?

Act 4, Scene 3
(Speaking to Rev. Paul.)
The lord done took my baby with him. I don’t know where to go anymore. The doctor’s people say she has AIDS or something. I don’t even know what that is! Rev. I done comes here for a blessing.
(Puts hand on Bible.)
Dear lord, I don’t knows what the future holds. But I know it’s all in your hands now. May those hands touch the lives of those in need of some care. We all need a shoulder to lean on, so let them grasp it. I know you with my grandbaby Kimberly Mae, and I’m doing my best to accept that you did the right thing, because you make no mistakes. It’s just a shame that she done gone so fast. She lit up my world. I loves her. Well I figure it’s going to be time for me to be with Kimberly soon. My heart giving out. Them people from TAC say it’s this disease called HIV, and they giving me all these medicines. I don’t know how to swallow pills. They injecting me with these needles that ain’t too clean. Just make the pain go away. Let the drought be over. I’m not asking of things I never seen before. I know you’re all mighty and powerful. Help Us. Help Africa. Help the World.
(Chokes and goes into seizure.)
(Falls to ground as Rev. tries to place her head on a soft pillow. Dies moments later.)
Act 4, Scene 5
(Praying on knees)
Lords of the sanctuary, the lords of nature. I bring to your attention the news of the chosen one. Kimberly Mae is no longer here on earth. She is with the you Gods. Anyone else who wears this shall be punished in the name of bravery to kill through self destruction. The sins that are committed shall be considered most abrupt, dishonoring and foul. Yes, Bobby now wears the bracelet. But I beg of you, show mercy to the young lad. This crypt disease, AIDS. He might have it. Make the bracelet a blessing. Keep him alive. The boy’s a hero with a lost heart. He loved his own sister as a girlfriend. He didn’t know. No one told him that was his half sister. But he fell in love, and I feel bad for the poor boy. He didn’t mean to fall in love with her, it just happened. And she just happened to be his sister. The father is dead. Kim’s rapist is dead. Kimberly is dead. He’s all alone. Let the bracelet guide him and lead him to his home. To the Gods of Nature, and the Goddesses, I pray to you.