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How to Destroy the World in One Easy Step

Updated on November 21, 2011

A large book sits on the center of a table. A light is focused on the book – the rest of the room is dark. Footsteps are heard; a young, red headed male enters. Lights come on as if he turned on a switch. The table is in the center of the room; a kitchen. Two chairs are placed, one on each end of the table.

The read head drops a pile of mail on a near by counter after shuffling through and mumbling about "buy one get one free!" ads and the phone bills from his "obnoxious brother".

He then turns towards the fridge, but the book catches his eye. He holds the book in front of him, reading the title out loud.

Fred: "How to destroy the world in one easy step."

A scream of "Noo!" is heard, followed by quick footsteps. Another young male tumbles through the kitchen door in fright; he has brown hair. He snatches the book from his brother, almost knocking him over, and quickly, but carefully, places the book back on the table, as far away from them as he can.

Bill: Dude, what is wrong with you?

Fred: points at book Don't touch that book! he withdraws his hand quickly

Bill: Why not? It was there; I want to look at it.

Fred: Okay, look. See it?

Both stare at the book, Bill with a look of confusion and intense curiosity, tilting his head to one side; Fred with a look of horror and anxiety.

Fred: There; you see it. Just a stupid book, see?

Bill: Can I read it?

Fred: NO! he stands between the table and his brother

Bill: Why not? he tries to push past Fred, but with no success. Fred, let me read it!

Fred: I can't. It's not mine.

Bill: Well who's is it?

Fred: I don't know… I just found it… a girl gave it to me.

Bill: So, are you going to give it back to her, if you don't want it?

Fred: I can't!

Bill: Why not?

Fred: She doesn't want it.

Bill: So, what are you going to do with it if no one can read it?

Fred: I don't know… Mostly to himself It needs to be hidden.

Bill: Hidden? Fred, what the hell has gotten into you?

Fred: Christ, Bill, it's evil! Can't you read? How to destroy the world in one easy step!

Bill: gives Fred a skeptic look So, what's the "one easy step"?

Fred: whispering I don't know!

Bill: Well, why don't you just open the book and read it and find out?

Fred: NO!

Bill: growls, frustrated Why not?

Fred: It can't be opened!

Bill: Says who? It's a book, it's supposed to be opened and read.

Fred: Says the girl! She said I can't open it; if I do, the world will be destroyed!

Bill: laughs loud and hard, as if Fred has just told him the funniest joke in the world.

Fred: Doesn't look amused, in fact, he is angry, and scared.

Bill: clears his throat once his laughter has died down, sensing his brother's fear Well, then, why don't you just burn it?

Fred: Burn it? Are you out of your mind?

Bill: Um… no? What's wrong with burning it?

Fred: It… I… Well… Sighs I don't know, but don't do it!

Bill: Why not?

Fred: Because. I. Don't. Know. What. Will. Happen.

Bill: Fred, this is insane. It's a god damn book; nothing is going to happen.

Fred: Bill, you don't understand. It's not just a book.

Bill: Are you trying to tell me it has special Wiggles fingers magical powers?

Fred: I'm telling you it's evil! This book is the end of the world!

Bill: Walks over to the phone, sitting on the counter. He picks it up and says hello as if it just rang. He holds the phone out to Fred It's for you. It said "Press one to destroy the world. Press two if you're a fucking idiot.

Fred: Bill, this isn't funny. Takes phone and hangs it up Why can't you take me seriously?

Bill: Fred, you're talking about a book that will supposedly destroy the world.
Fred: And it's a serious matter.

Bill: A book won't destroy the world, Fred!

Fred: This one will!
Bill: You're insane. Walks over to book, picks it up

Fred: Bill, don't!

Fred tackles bill and they both fall to the floor. The book is knocked out of Bill's hands and slides across the floor in front of the door Bill first came through

Bill: Fred, get the hell off me!

Fred: Don't touch the book!

Bill: growling Fine!

Fred gets off of Bill and dusts himself off. Bill stands, stretches, and cracks his back. Fred proceeds to pace, mumbling about what to do with the book. He stops, shakes his head, mumbles and paces some more

Bill: Fred, this is ridiculous. Why do you believe this girl? It's probably a prank. Will you just relax?

Fred: whispering No. pause, then louder No, it's not a prank.

Bill: How do you know?

Fred: I know. You don't think I believed her at first, did you?

Bill snorts

Fred: irritated I, like you, thought it was a joke. louder, addressing the audience as well She approached me, young, pretty, scared. She told me about this book, said it couldn't be opened. I laughed and continued on my way, but she followed me. high pitched voice, mocking the girl's "Please! Take this from me! I can't have it anymore. I never want to see it again!" She thrust the book at me and backed away quickly. I though she was insane. I wanted to open the book, but I didn't, and when I looked up again, she was gone. I went to the library to find another book like it, but there was nothing. No author or publication on the front cover, and still, I didn't want to open it. So I googled it, but there's no such book anywhere. This book doesn't exsist, Bill.

Bill: Then how do you have it? How did that girl have it?

Fred: I don't know…

a car door is heard being slammed shut

Fred: Shit, that's Christie.

Bill: Great, you're stupid girl friend is here.

Fred: Screw you. At least I have one.

Bill: Dude, she defines dumb blonde.

a young girl enters through the door, carrying a small bright pink bag, wearing pink heels and a short pink skirt with a frilly white shirt and a pink jacket. She is smiling a wide, white grin.

Christie: Hello, boys!

her foot hits the book on the floor

Christie: Oh… what's this?

she picks up the book and reads the title out loud. Fred approaches her and takes the book from her carefully

Christie: Is this yours, Sweetie?

Fred: Yes, yes it is.

Bill: Don't open it! It might destroy the world! he throws his arms in the air, mocking an explosion

Christie: horrified Really? Get rid of it!

Bill laughs, shakes his head, and sits at the table

Christie: What's so funny? Is this a joke? Bill, this is serious!

Bill: You're as stupid as Fred. A book can not destroy the world.

Fred: How do you know?

Christie: Yeah, how do you know?

Bill: It's a book!

Christie: Is there a bomb inside?

Fred: I'm calling Joe.

Bill: Don't call Joe!

Christie: Can we just get rid of it?

Fred dials a number on the phone

Bill: Fred, hang up the phone.

Fred: Joe, hi, it's Fred… yeah, listen, I need a favor…

Bill: Fred, hang up!

Fred: Yes, that's Bill.

Bill tries to take the phone away. They wrestle over it

Christie: Boys! Stop it!

as they wrestle, Christie speaks into the receiver

Christie: Joe! We have a book called "How to Destroy the World in One Easy Step!"

Bill groans and gives up the phone

Fred: Yes? Okay, see you soon.

Bill: Moron.

Christie: Oh, I love Joe!

Lights out

lights come up: Bill is leaning against the counters. Christie is at the tablem flipping through the pages of a Seventeen magazine. Fred stands by the chair where Joe sits, examining the book. It's quiet except for Christie flipping pages. Bill sighs

Bill: No offense, Joe, but there's no such thing as a book psychiatrist.

Joe: still examining the book There must be since I am one.

Bill: It's not a real profession.

Christie: I can't believe they're being so hard on Miley Cyrus! I was the same way when I was her age! she flips through more pages

Joe: I think we should open it.

Fred: Are you mad?

Bill: It's just a damn book!

Joe: We'll never know unless we open it.

Fred: We can't!

Bill: This is ridiculous.

Joe: If we find out the one step, maybe we can prevent it.

Bill: laughs I bet the one step is just opening it.

silence as Joe and Fred stare at Bill, horrified.

Christie: Mmm, I like the smell of this one! she holds the magazine to her nose and smells it, breathing loudly, then continues to flip through the pages

Joe: Of course, when didn't I think of it sooner?

Fred: Now we really can't open it!

Bill: Guys, it was a joke.

Fred: Get this book out of my house!

Joe: This can't be opened. You have to make sure no one opens it!

Christie: Hey, Fred, listen to this, it's your horoscope. "You may be the only one, standing alone, but stay strong; you're doing the right thing. Fred crosses his arms proudly. And Bill, yours says, "You're surrounding yourself with idiots; get out while you still can!" at that, Bill storms out of the kitchen, slamming the door behind him. Oooh, Joe, yours says, "Make a move on that certain someone you've had your eye on. You won't regret it! After Joe's is read, he gets up, takes Christie's face in his hands and proceeds to kiss her, before being ripped away by Fred

Fred: What the fuck are you thinking?

Joe: I love her!

Christie: Mine says I should get my nails done!

Fred punches Joe in the face and he falls to the ground. Bill returns, mumbling about how he forgot his keys, then gawks at the sight of Joe holding his nose in pain

Bill: What the hell did I miss?

Christie: I'm getting my nails done! she leaves

Fred: Joe kissed my girl friend!

Joe: muffled through his hand I love her!

Fred: No you don't! he pushes Joe back on the ground as he tries to get up

Joe: Fuck you, Fred!

Joe gets up and pushes Fred. They fight and yell at each other. While this goes on, Bill picks up the book, still lying on the table

Bill: Hey guys! Guess who has the book?

The two continue to fight, pushing and punching and yelling

Bill: louder, over the yells I'm opening the book!

Joe and Fred: NOOOOOOO!

Bill opens the book just as Joe and Fred rush to stop him. Lights out, silence

Ending 1

voices are heard. It remains dark

Fred: What happened?

Joe: Are we dead?

Bill: Morons.

lights come on

Bill: We just lost power.

Fred and Joe are lying on the floor, hands over their heads. Bill is standing by the door. The book is open on the table. The three huddle over the book

Joe: It's… empty. The pages are blank!

Ending 1.5

Joe: There's a button!
Fred: Don't push the button!

Ending 1.5.5

Joe. There's a button…

Bill pushes the button. Lights out

Bill: Oops… lost power again.

Ending

Joe: There's a button…

Bill pushes button. Lights out

Voice of God: Game over?

Voice of Jesus: laughing Twenty dollars, God. Pay up!

Voice of God: Screw you, Jesus.

Ending 2

two people dressed in green representing aliens

Alien 1: Dude, the humans just blew up Earth!

Alien 2: No way! Really?

Alien 1: Yea, look!

both look out a window. They ooh and ahh

Alien 1: I wonder what happened…

Alien 2: You don't think they found that book, do you?

Alien 1: "How to Destroy the World in One Easy Step?" The one we created to become effects supreme rules of space?

Alien 2: Yeah, that book!

Together: …Nah.

Alien 2: Hey, wanna play Alien versus Humans?

Alien 1: Okay!

lights out

Ending 3

one light shines on stage over the table where the book now sits, laying open. The three guys lay motionless on the floor. God enters through the door, stepping over the bodies

God: Uh oh, what happened here? Hmm…

phone beeps

God: Ah, one new text message.

reads, groans

God: Why can't Peter take care of things while I'm gone? dials a number What's going on up there?... Oh yes, I think I'm at their house… The whole world?...The Book? he sees the book on the table Oh shit, Pete, they found The Book! What am I going to do with six billion dead people?...Okay, I'll be right up.

he hands up the phone, takes book, and sighs

God: I can't believe I created these morons!

leaves through door. Lights out

Ending 4

Joe and Fred tackle Bill to the floor. Book flies across the room, landing on the floor, still open. Joe and Fred gawk at the book. Bill laughs.

Bill: April Fool's!

lights out

Ending 4.5

Bill: See? Just a book.

Fred: But… but…

Joe: Damn it! Now I have to get a real job!

Christie walks in

Christie: Look at my nails!

lights out

Ending 5

Each ending is done; director is on stage directing each play. (play in a play)

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      fairfaxbooks 5 years ago from Fairfax County, Virginia

      Wow that was very original. I'm impressed by the devious thought and dark humor.

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