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The Cauldron

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The curtain opens to someone weeping. Elizabeth Proctor is sitting at home, alone. Her children are in their room, praying. It is getting dark outside. There is a knock on the door.

 

ELIZABETH, rising up and walking to the door, drying her tears : Who is it? Can you not wait for tomorrow?

 

REVEREND HALE’S VOICE, he is stuttering and he sounds like he’s been crying for a while now : Reverend Hale, ma’am. I am here to apologize for causing you problems within your household. I am staying in town for tonight and leaving tomorrow.

 

ELIZABETH, opens the door, and sees Rev. Hale in a deplorable state. His eyes are puffy and there are tear marks on his cheeks. His hair is messy and his clothing rustled : Ah, hello Reverend… Do you want to come inside?

 

HALE: If you don’t mind, Goody Proctor, it’s quite cold out here.

 

ELIZABETH, moves to the side and let’s Hale inside : You said you come to apologize… for what, pray tell?

 

HALE, he shuffles inside . He looks downcast : Is there anywhere to sit?  

 

ELIZABETH, she gestures towards a chair by a table : Right here, Reverend.

 

HALE, he sits and gazes at Elizabeth, who is still standing : For your husband’s unfortunate… passing…

 

ELIZABETH, she sits back down at her previous spot : Oh… She furrows her brow. Do you come by order of the court?

 

HALE, he quickly shakes his head : No! No… I have denounced the the court. Deputy Governor Danforth had a fit when I did that.

 

ELIZABETH: Oh… Well… It is not all yo-

 

HALE, shaking his head quickly : No, Goody Proctor! It is my fault. I was the one who gave Abigail Williams her power over the court… Me and Reverend Parris. Did you hear about how Abigail ran away a few days ago?

 

ELIZABETH: No, what happened?

 

HALE: Abigail Williams and Mercy Lewis ran away with all of Parris’ money and took a boat to flee the retribution of the angered folks in Salem.

 

ELIZABETH: Good riddance. She was a plight on this village. Of course, she and her ‘followers’ have already cause extensive damage to the village. Some say that “The power of theology is broken in Salem.”

 

HALE, nodding solemnly : I have to agree with them, clearly God and State were not meant to mix at the level it was at before I arrived.

 

ELIZABETH: I fear that the cows and fields will start dying off in masses… Since all the people who tended to them have been killed.

 

HALE, nodding in agreement : Yes, this is sadly the case… I just… Regret all of this… Goody Proctor… What shall I do? Clearly injustice is haunting Salem, and the surrounding areas.

 

ELIZABETH: I believe- I believe that you should write about the injustices here. Yes. Write and share the injustices that have been committed here. Give the court Hell.

 

HALE, nodding slowly : I believe I shall. I’ll write an essay about the misguided attempt and the lies surrounding ‘witchcraft trials’ and the court. Yes!

 

ELIZABETH, rising up : Yes! Go tell them the sins of these ‘witchcraft’ trials!

 

HALE, rising up as well, he gives Elizabeth a handshake : I bid you goodnight Goody Proctor.

 

ELIZABETH: You too Reverend Hale. Safe travels.

 

Hale rushes outside, excited at the chance to stop these wicked trials. Elizabeth waves to him and he waves back. She closes her door, and goes sit down. And she weeps, for her lost John. And prays for Reverend Hale to successfully stop these trials.

 

THE CURTAIN CLOSES.