As It Always Was by Katie DiPietro


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This Play is the copyright of the Author and must NOT be Performed without the Author’s PRIOR consent


      Cast of Characters:
      (In order of appearance)

      NOKEN:  (m.) Brother of Huldra. Malevolent spirit, created for
      entertainment, who lures humans into the water to drown them. Thinks
      he is in love with Freya. Hates Dyre. Mysterious, seductive,
      thoughtful, conflicted.

      HULDRA:      (m./f.) Sibling of Noken. Malevolent spirit, created for
      entertainment, who lures humans into the snow to kill them. Hates
      Dyre. Brassy,mischievous, plotting, upbeat, loyal, enthusiastic.

      BRENN/A:      (m./f.) Sibling of Gyda. Storyteller. Viking warrior led by
      Magda. Boisterous, intense, protective, loyal, strong.

      EIRA/O:      (m./f.) Viking warrior led by Magda. The only Viking without
      any family connections. Outspoken and insightful, powerful, brave.

      MAGDA:  (f.) Sister of Freya. The leader of the Viking warriors.
      Obsessed with revenge. Strong, violent, bold.

      GYDA:  (f.) Sister of Brenna. Comic relief, Viking warriors led by
      Magda. Goofy, fun, loud, melodramatic.

      HEL:  (m./f.) The god of the underworld, the keeper of souls.
      Responsible for the malevolent spirits and their actions. Has a soft
      spot for Huldra. Brooding, cold, intense, dangerous.

      DYRE:  (m./f.) Malevolent spirit, created for destruction. In bitter
      competition with Noken and Huldra.
      Evil, twisted, dangerous, cruel, impulsive.

      FREYA:  (f.) Sister of Magda. Viking warrior Ė thinks she is in love
      with Noken. Hidden behind the ďveil.Ē Bright, quick, emotional,
      fearless.


      [Brenna, Eira, HEL and Dyre can be cast as any gender. Pronouns can be
      changed for performance purposes, as casting indicates. The roles of
      BRENNA, EIRA, and DYRE are written as female and HEL is written as
      male in manuscript in accordance with original casting.]


      SCENE

      A dense forest in the Icelandic wilderness close to a Viking homestead.


      TIME

      Circa 800CE, when the world was still wild.

      NOTE

      The production is meant to be presented as a multi-media piece. Most
      scenes should be accompanied by tracks or live musicians. Tracks/music
      can be chosen at the directorís discretion. Music suggestions have
      been added into the script for reference.


      ACT I, SCENE 1:


      SETTING:          A clearing in the woods. The set consists of large trees,
      dense, colorful foliage, and hidden shadowy areas.

      AT RISE:          NOKEN and HULDRA are alone on the stage. Noken is lounging.
      The mood is peaceful, playful, and nonchalant. Huldra, however, seems agitated.


      NOKEN: Itís been a dull winter.

      HULDRA: Thank you, Noken, I definitely hadnít noticed.

      NOKEN: No need to be testy. Itís just a thought.

      HULDRA: Youíve lost your edge.

      NOKEN: I havenít lost my edge.

      HULDRA: How many humans have you drowned, lately?

      NOKEN: You know as well as I do that the drowning isnít the fun
      part. The chase is the fun part. Huldra, youíre a terrible god.

      HULDRA: I am not a god. Iím a malevolent spirit, just like you.

      NOKEN: ...a malevolent spiritÖ

      HULDRA: To be fair, you havenít even chased in a while. Itís
      beenÖ Itís been a long time.

      NOKEN: (smiling) Youíre a historian now? A malevolent historian?

      HULDRA: Yes. And youíve lost your edge.

      NOKEN: Itís been a dull winter.

      HULDRA: We used to have fun, you know.

      NOKEN: We still have fun.

      HULDRA: Not for ages!

      NOKEN: Itís been months. At most itís been months. We still have fun.

      HULDRA: Yeah, but we used to do terrible things together. Iím
      talking about sick, twisted, nasty things.

      NOKEN: Ah, the good times.

      (The mood becomes energetic and mischievous)

      HULDRA: Yes, the good times! Remember that time we came up with that
      plan to convince those rival clan leaders that they were both in love
      with me? We told them to journey all the way up to theÖ

      NOKEN: (cutting her off) Ötop of the mountain over on the east side
      of the black sea?

      HULDRA: There was so much wind over there!

      NOKEN: It was freezing to begin with.

      HULDRA: And you told them that to win my love they had to swim across
      that freezing creek.

      NOKEN: They couldnít stop shivering!

      HULDRA: They looked ridiculous.

      NOKEN: We had trouble with that one girl, remember? She was the wife
      or something of one of the clan leaders and she kept following and
      following and yelling at them saying that they were idiots for going
      up to the mountain alone!

      HULDRA: (laughing) Oh yeah! We convinced them to tell all of their
      warriors not to come with them because there was a massive ice storm
      coming in.

      NOKEN: They knew about the storm!

      HULDRA: You ďtook careĒ of her and then you climbed up the damn
      mountain, so you wouldnít miss the fun!

      NOKEN: I stood there next to a colossal fire; warm and toasty while
      you convinced them that the one who lasted the longest in the snow
      would get to spend eternity with you.

      HULDRA: Pathetic!
      NOKEN: All the frost on their beardsÖ

      HULDRA: The best part was when you decided to float the bodies up the
      river to the homesteads! That was messed up.

      NOKEN: Ah, the good timesÖ

      (The mood calms as the two reminisce in silence for a moment)

      HULDRA: Iím thinking we should have a bet.

      NOKEN: A bet?

      HULDRA: Yes.

      NOKEN: Expound, woman. Iím not a mind reader.

      HULDRA: I have a firm belief that I am much better at manipulating
      humans. We both have the same general purpose and interests; finding
      innocent victims, luring them to their deathsÖ The only real
      difference between us is that I lure them into the snow and you lure
      them into the water.

      NOKEN: Thatís not a bet.

      HULDRA: I think my charms are considerably more intoxicating than
      yours. I can drag anyone into the wilds. Anyone.

      NOKEN: Really?

      HULDRA: Yes, really.

      NOKEN: And I canít?

      HULDRA: That is the suspicion. I think youíve lost your touch. You
      havenít drowned anyone in ages.

      NOKEN: Whatís the bet?

      HULDRA: You, Noken, will have to lure someone to their death before I
      do, or else IÖ

      NOKEN: (pause) the dramatic pause being thrilling as it isÖ

      HULDRA: (cutting him off) Ö get your soul.

      NOKEN: Making me mortal.

      HULDRA: Making you mortal.

      NOKEN: I donít have a soul, Huldra.

      HULDRA: You do. Or at least, you didÖ at one point.

      NOKEN: And?

      HULDRA: And it will be mine if I win.

      NOKEN: Then?

      HULDRA: (playfully) Oh, who knows? Maybe Iíll hunt you down and kill
      you, myself. Just for sport, of course.

      NOKEN: Of course.

      HULDRA: Itís been a dull winter.

      NOKEN: Huldra, your bets arenít what they used to be.

      HULDRA: Hang on! Iím not done. The soul that you lure has to be in
      love. Wait, no. The soul has to choose to go with the
      spirit…voluntarily die…. knowing that they wonít be able to
      return.

      NOKEN: I donít see the challenge.

      HULDRA: (frustrated) Fine, then. Continue to sulk. Sit here on the
      edge of the water and pretend youíre doing something worthwhile with
      your immortality.

      NOKEN: Donít mind if I do.

      HULDRA: Or we can talk about our last wager. We can dissect the
      intricacies; the ins and outs of my victory. I know itís really all
      you think about anymore, so Iím sure weíll have plenty to discuss.

      NOKEN: Iíll take your bet. There isnít anything else worth my time.

      HULDRA: Excellent. Iíll say goodbye, for now. Iím off to find a
      suitable human.

      NOKEN: Oh? Are we judging on quality?

      HULDRA: We are ďmalevolent spirits.Ē We canít just bet on riff raff, can we?

[End of Extract]


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