Episode 9: The Wolf at the Door

Bee:

It’s the Beacon.

Music: Intro selection.

Actor Sound: Bee sniffles.

Bee:

It’s all just gone to shit, okay?  Just all of it. It all sucks. And it shouldn’t.  It should have been so easy! You have the enemy—this monster attacking people—and then you have us—the people with superpowers or magic or whatever—who should’ve put a stop to it.  But that isn’t what happened. Because we suck! All of us!

We were supposed to be there for each, but we couldn’t be.  All we do is hurt each other. Newt…Capy…even Hawk…everything I thought I needed from them…they all just kept letting me down…

Or…maybe I just let them down.  I kept trying to force something that clearly wasn’t working…kept trying to fix something that was never whole to begin with.

Maybe Newt was right.  Maybe I was just selfish about all of this.

Silent beat.

Bee:

But why did Fox have to run?  Again? I thought that if nothing else, I at least had things right with her.  And I actually thought that she at least wanted to be my friend! But whenever I need her, she just—she just—

Please.  Oh Fox, please.  I don’t know what else to do.  I’m so confused and scared and al—

Sound Effect: Key in lock.

Sound Effect: Dorm door opening.

Actor Sound: Attempting to stop sniffles.

Bee:

Oh, um.  W-Wolfie.  Um, hi. I’m back.  Sorry I forgot to text you but I didn’t think you’d even notice and I, um, I-I—

Wolf:

Bee?  Are you okay?  You look like you’ve been crying.

Bee:

Whaaat?  Nooo, I’m—I’m fine.  I’m fine. Nothing happened.  I just—y’know, I just came in, and—you know how it’s like when it’s super cold out and you come inside where it’s warm and your nose starts running and...your eyes get all red and puffy and...and...and…

Extended silence.

Actor Sound: Wolf sighs.

Wolf:

Bee...is this about the magic thing?

Bee:

...What?  I’m sorry, what?

Wolf:

I said, is this about the magic thing?

Bee:

What?  I mean, um, whaaaat?  Magic? What’re you talking about?  I’m not—I mean, there’s no—magic doesn’t exist, whaaaat?

Actor Sound: Wolf laughs.

Wolf:

You know Bee, you’ve always been a really, really bad liar.

Bee:

I’m not lying!  I’m just going through some tough stuff with...my...podcast.

Wolf:

Oh.  Right.  Do you mean that one podcast you won’t tell me anything about?

Bee:

Yes!  That one!

Wolf:

Orrrrr, do you mean that one called The Beacon, a podcast where you have magic powers and you’re trying to find other people who do?  Oh, and there’s something about fighting a wolf monster? Or was the Wolf your roommate? I really can’t keep them straight.

Bee:

Oh my god.  You knew. You knew.  How—how long?  

Wolf:

Honestly, since just a little after you released maybe episode…three?

Bee:

How?

Wolf:

Well, for one thing, it didn’t take too many excuses of “I was off burning things in the woods for sound effects” for me to figure out things weren’t adding up.  I mean, face it, Bee. You’re not an actress. You’re not a sports journalist. And you’re not someone who runs away in the middle of the night for no good reason.  I knew something was up.

Bee:

Well then how did you know exactly?  I could have just as easily been trying to—to cover up how my friends and I murdered a professor or something.

Wolf:

Ha.  Yeah, right.  Anyway, I figured it out through the complicated method of looking over your shoulder at literally any given minute of the day.  Like, you literally always have the email or the social media or the stats for your show open. It was easy to figure out what your podcast was.  Then I just had to listen to it and then…

Bee:

And then...you knew.

Wolf:

Yeeeeeup.

Bee:

Oh my god…

Silent beat.

Wolf:

You okay there?  You’re looking a little shellshocked.

Bee:

I just...how could this happen?  I was so careful.

Wolf:

I mean, you definitely tried to be.  But with the bad lies, the websites, the fact that I could usually hear you through the door talking about magic stuff when you thought you were recording alone…

Bee:

Oh god...I literally can’t even keep a secret right.

Wolf:

Look, Bee, it’s okay!  It was kinda freaky to learn about the magic stuff, but I’m cool with it.  And I haven’t told anyone else about—Bee, seriously? Why’re you so upset?

Bee:

Because you know everything now!  You know I suck at my magic and I can’t get people to work with me and I’ve just spent all this time talking uselessly into a microphone, pretending I was doing any good at all, while everyone and everything around me fell apart because I was just wouldn’t quit picking at it!

Wolf:

Bee—

Bee:

Oh god, oh god, oh god, and I put that episode up today, so you know about Capy too, oh god, oh Wolf, I’m so sorry, I swear I wasn’t trying to sell you into a date or anything, I was just—

Wolf:

Look, look, we can talk about all that later, okay?  But seriously, you seem like you’re falling apart lately.  I just walked in on you crying again. I don’t know what just happened, but I’m guessing it’s not something I can find out in another episode, which is how I’ve been trying to keep up with your crazy life lately.  So what happened? Who was that Hawk person? What’s been going on since then to get you all like this?

Actor Sound: Bee sighs.

Bee:

Oh...it’s a long story…

Transition: Fade.

Setting Change: Hospital waiting room.

Silent beat.

Newt:

Hey.  What is it she says again to start the episodes?

Capy:

What?

Newt:

Bee.  She does this intro thing for her show.  How does it go?

Capy:

Oh.  Um, I think it changes.

Newt:

Sure.  Is it at least usually themed to the episode or…?

Capy:

I don’t know, man.  I don’t pay that much attention.

Newt:

Right.  Whatever.

Actor Sound: Newt clears his throat.

Distance/Volume: Newt moves up close on the mic and speaks in a controlled volume, as if too embarrassed to be overheard by anyone else.

Newt:

Greetings, and welcome to The Beacon, the show where I have...unqualified supernatural abilities and I’m trying to…trying to...

Actor Sound: Newt sighs in frustration.

Newt:

This is stupid.

Capy:

Huh?

Newt:

You take the stupid recorder.  Take it back to Bee. I’m sure she’ll want all this for her show.  Or throw it away. Whatever.

Capy:

Where are you going?

Newt:

Home.

Capy:

But—what if Hawk wakes up?  What am I supposed to do? I can’t talk to her!  She’s going to hate me for what I did!

Newt:

Frankly Capy, I don’t know and I don’t care.  You’re on your own.

Silent beat.

Capy:

Well, shit.

Transition: Cut.

Setting Change: Dorm room.

Wolf:

Wow.  Those fuckers.  After everything you did for them, they couldn’t keep it together for one day after meeting each other.

Bee:

It’s—it’s not that simple, Wolfie.  All I did for them was try to drag them into something they clearly didn’t want when I should have just left them alone.

Wolf:

You’re not serious, right?  This isn’t trying to force like, some weekly movie club of people who don’t like each other.  You were trying to build a support network for people who have no one else in the world to turn to.  And deal with a super dangerous monster in the meanwhile!

Bee:

But I should’ve just left them alone!  I was the one who needed the support, not them.  And I wanted the luptile gone, so I should’ve taken care of it.  

Wolf:

You can’t be serious.

Bee:

I was scared and selfish and stupid.  And they must hate me now.

Wolf:

Hate you?  Why would they hate you in all this?

Bee:

Wolf…most people don’t even like me to begin with.  Like, there’s a reason I didn’t—I don’t have any friends at school aside from you.  I’m just kind of…off and awkward, and not even in like, a cute, quirky way.  Everyone’s just looking for any excuse to tell themselves I’m not worth the brain space it takes to think about me.

Wolf:

Oh, come on.

Bee:

You did it!  You hated me for running off that night.  And that was while knowing what I was actually doing.  People don’t like me. So how could I ever have thought I even had a chance at making this work?

Wolf:

Bee, I—I didn’t hate you then.  I don’t hate you now. I was angry at you.  And upset.  People can get angry at you without hating you.  You’d know that if you didn’t go into every interaction already thinking you’re the worst person in the room.

Bee:

Why then?  Why were you so angry if you knew I was just trying to help you?

Wolf:

It’s because I knew exactly what you were doing that I got angry!  I knew a split second after you took off that that growling was the luptile and that you were going because you thought I didn’t stand a chance against it.  Do you know just how much it sucks to have to face that? To realize that you’re totally helpless and that someone you care about might be hurt or dead just to save you?

Bee:

I’m...I’m sorry, Wolf.  I didn’t think of it like that.

Wolf:

Yeah, well...thanks.  And I know I didn’t stand a chance against it, alright?  I don’t have magic fire powers like you. But if I’d had any chance to come to your rescue and not make things that much worse for both of us, I would’ve taken it.  Because I care about you. Ya damn nerd.

Bee:

I know that now.  If you could’ve, I would’ve wanted your help too.  Going to face that monster alone was terrifying, but it was the only choice I had back then.  Ironically enough, I think that might’ve been the one good thing I’ve actually done out of all this mess too.

Wolf:

Bee, come on.  You’re not giving yourself enough credit.

Bee:

No offense, but I’m pretty sure what I’ve done doesn’t add up to much more than a voice in an echo chamber.

Wolf:

So maybe it feels like you didn’t actually accomplish that much, but you did a whole lot more than that, okay?  You reached out. You tried. You gave all those people a chance to do their best.  Maybe they didn’t take that chance, but you did, Bee.  You stepped up to the job, and I think that if you keep at it, you’ll have a lot more chances to get it right.

Actor Sound: Bee sighs in relief.

Bee:

Thank you, Wolfie.  You’re a good friend.  Better than I gave you credit for.  I...should’ve told you about all of this sooner.

Wolf:

Eh, it’s alright.  I get why you kept it a secret.

Bee:

Yeah.  And so long as you’re in on this and...doling out Wolf’s Words of Wisdom, do you have any idea of what I should do...next?  I mean with all them...and all that…

Wolf:

Honestly, I dunno Bee.  I’m not sure exactly what you can do right now.

Bee:

So, what?  Do I just wait for the luptile to maim someone else?

Wolf:

No, I mean, just give it time.  Give it some thought. You’ll figure out the right thing to do.  I know you will.

Bee:

Yeah, I guess that might be—

Sound Effect: Chat messenger bleep.

Bee:

Oh…

Wolf:

What was that?

Bee:

What?  Oh, nothing.  Um, Wolf, since I’ve been having such a…crappy evening, would you mind doing me a favor?

Wolf:

Course, Bee.  What do you need?

Bee:

Well, I—when I was at the hospital, I kind of...got mad and threw my recorder at Newt and Capy.  And since it had all of last episode on it—

Wolf:

You want me to go pick it up for you?

Bee:

If you wouldn’t mind.  I’m guessing they just left it in the waiting room.

Wolf:

Sure thing. Late dinner when I get back?

Bee:

Yeah.  Thanks.

Sound Effect: Dorm door opens, shuts.

Sound Effect: Typing on keyboard.

Bee:

Guys, listeners, I just got a chat from someone who says—who says they’re Fox...and they just sent me Fox’s last username. So I…guess it’s Fox.

Huh.

So, um, Fox says…”I’m sorry I disappeared again.  I’m so terrible. I got your texts when you said you needed help and I panicked.  I’m sorry. I’m so sorry.”

Actor Sound: Bee sighs.

Bee:

Oh, Fox.  “It’s okay, Fox.  I’m okay. I’m…” Hm.  “I’m just glad to hear from you again.”

Although really, I don’t know.  I don’t know if…

Fox says, “I’ve been finding your posts online.  And I listened to that episode you posted today. I can’t believe you found another one of us already!  That’s incredible!”

“Yeah, she goes by Hawk.  Or ‘The Hawk.’ She has superspeed and she thinks of herself as a superhero.  Or she did. There was something bad that happened today and I don’t think she’ll be running anywhere anytime soon.”

Fox says, “Oh no.  Are you okay? What happened?”

“I’m fine.  It wasn’t the luptile this time, but…God, Fox, I can feel it getting closer.  I feel like it specifically tried to come after me and another friend almost got hurt because of it.  Other people did get hurt.”

She says, “At least you’re safe.  I should’ve helped you when you needed me.  You’re the only person like me I have. If anything had happened to you, I don’t know what I would’ve done.”

I…I’m not typing this, but…that’s practically all I ever wanted someone to say to me.  That I matter to them. That I’m doing something right. If it could just stay like this, I—

Silent beat.

Bee:

Oh, Fox is still on the line.  She’s asking if I’m still here.

Um, “Yeah, Fox.  And, maybe I can pick your brain about something.  See, I think there’s something I still need to do. I think it’s going to be dangerous, and I think I might have to do it alone.  And maybe I don’t need to do it. I could just as easily choose not to. But if I make that choice and save myself, a lot of other people could be hurt instead.  Please, Fox—tell me—should I do it?”

Silent beat.

Bee:

Fox says, with a lot of exclamation points, “Please don’t!  I know what you’re thinking but don’t!! You can’t!! You’re not strong enough.”

Um.  “Wow.  Rude.”

“It’s not a joke.  It. Will. Kill. You.  And you can’t die. I need you.  I was so alone before I heard you.  There are so many other people who need you.  So please, Bee. Don’t do it.”

Silent beat.

Sound Effect: Laptop closing.

Bee:

I guess that settles it.

Transition: Fade.

Setting Change: Hospital waiting room.

Distance/Volume: Wolf speaks to the receptionist from across the room.

Wolf:

Hi, excuse me.  I’m looking for something a friend left here.  Has anyone dropped off a recorder?

Capy:

Um, Wolf?  What’re you doing here?

Distance/Volume: Wolf speaks from across the room.

Wolf:

Oh.  You.  

Volume/Distance: Wolf gets closer.

Wolf:

Give me that.  That’s Bee’s recorder.  Actually. No. Why don’t you talk into it?

Capy:

What’re you—stop that.

Wolf:

No.  Why don’t you tell it to the mic?  Tell it to the mic what a huge fucking coward you are.

Capy:

Look, I don’t know what Bee told you, but—

Wolf:

She told me everything.

Capy:

…Everything?

Wolf:

Uh-huh.  Everything.  And in case I’m not being specific enough, that includes your powers, your little super club, the fact that you broke someone’s leg—

Capy:

It wasn’t like that!  She was harassing me! She wouldn’t let me go and I just wanted to make her stop!

Wolf:

Well, you sure did that.

Capy:

Look, no offense, but why do you even care?

Wolf:

Because you fuckers—you and whoever that Newt is—made my roommate cry.  And nobody makes my girl cry and gets away with it. At this point, I know all this is because you don’t have the guts to stand up and deal with that monster, so I want you to speak up loud and clear and it to the mic that the reason you’ve been making my friend’s life miserable is because you’re a big fucking—

Capy:

I’m scared, okay?  Is that what you want me to say?

Wolf:

Well…yeah.  Uh, that was kind of easier than I thought.

Capy:

Like, everyone thinks that just because I’m tall and strong and I don’t flinch when someone laughs at me that I must be so brave, right?  But I get scared too. I’m scared of that giant killer wolf monster, which is like, totally rational, okay? I’m still scared that someone’s going to call me a monster.  And now I’m scared that I might actually be a monster because of my own stupid power and because I know how easily it can hurt people.  This all just proves I’m still a coward and I’m still some clumsy fuck-up who just steps on everyone on accident!

Silent beat.

Capy:

Phew.  That was...that was maybe the the first time I’ve actually said that to anyone.  But do you get what I’m saying? I can’t be brave enough for everyone because I’m hardly brave enough for myself and I—I have better things waiting for me than being scared all the time.

Wolf:

…Fine.

Capy:

Fine?

Wolf:

Yeah.  Fine. Whatever.  Honestly, I don’t care.  You’re the one who has to live with your decisions.  Just stay out of me and Bee’s ways and it won’t make a lick of difference.

Capy:

Wait!

Wolf:

What now?

Capy:

So, just to clarify, when you said Bee told you, everything, does that include—

Wolf:

You should check your podcast feed.  She just posted your trivia night episode today.

Capy:

Ohhh……So, uh, do you—

Wolf:

Please tell me you are not seriously, right now, at this very moment, trying to—

Sound Effect: Wolf’s text tone for Bee.

Wolf:

Oh fuck, one second.

Capy:

What is it?

Wolf:

Text from Bee.  Says…Oh god. Oh GOD.  Bee, you stupid little—

Capy:

What?

Wolf:

Look at this shit!

Capy:

It says, “If I don’t come back, please finish editing the last episodes of this show.  The password to my laptop is…” What is she talking about?

Wolf:

Isn’t it obvious?  She’s going after the monster!

Capy:

What?  But she’s so—soft and squishy.  That thing’ll massacre her.

Wolf:

Yeah, no shit!  Fuck, fuck, fuck.  

Sound Effect: Typing on phone.

Wolf:

Fuck, she’s not gonna read these.  She’s not going to turn back. Capy, you need to go after her.  Right now.

Capy:

What?  No! I can’t!  I have my whole life ahead of my and it does not involve—

Wolf:

Forget your stupid future!  You said you wanted all this so you could help all the tall fat lesbian girls out there, right?  Maybe you can’t do that. Maybe you can’t be brave enough for everyone. But maybe, you can be brave enough for one extra short, fat ambiguously sexualitied girl who needs your help.  So forget about your future, get your ass into gear, and get to work on making all your strength worth a goddamn thing!

Capy:

But I—

Wolf:

Do you want her to be wolf food?

Capy:

No, but—

Wolf:

Do you want to be Wolf food?

Capy:

I—I don’t know how to answer that!

Wolf:

Then get going and figure it out!

Capy:

Urrrgh, I—you make me crazy, you know?

Wolf:

I know.

Capy:

Gimme that.  And don’t you do anything stupid either.

Distance/Volume: Wolf calls out from a distance as Capy hurries away.

Wolf:

Go get her!

Actor Sound: Capy lets out an aggravated sigh.

Capy:

This is The Beacon and tonight, Bee—we’re coming for you.