Generic Radio Workshop Script Library (BACK)

Series: The Witch's Tale
Show: Graveyard Mansion
Date: Jun 03 1933

Written by Alonzo Dean Cole; transcribed by Kevin Rimney Oct 2009

Old Nancy - An old cackling witch, her and her cat Satan host the show

Story characters

Curtis Blanchard - him and his brother inherited a mansion
Alan Blanchard - him and his brother inherit a mansion
Cab Driver - Cajun accent
Netty Blanchard - relative of the brothers - French/Cajun accent
Doctor Brochard - a doctor who knows things about the mansion - slight French accent

MUSIC:

Theme begins

ANNOUNCER:

We bring you the Witch's Tale. Written and produced by Alonzo Dean Cole.

MUSIC:

Theme continues

ANNOUNCER:

And now let us join old Nancy, witch of Salem and Satan, her wise black cat.

MUSIC:

end theme

OLD NANCY:

Hehehe (witch cackle)

SATAN: Meooow!

OLD NANCY:

Hundre' and three year old I be today. Yessir, a hundre' and three year old. Satan,

SATAN:

Meow?

OLD NANCY:

If these folks wanna hear 'nother of our purty lil' bedtime stories you just tell 'em to douse out dem lights so we'll have it nice and dark.

SATAN:

Meooooow!

OLD NANCY:

Now draw up to tha fire and gaze into tha embers, gaze into 'em deep and soon you'll be down south with us in Ol' Louiseannee. Hehe. It's strange country down there, ghost country and outside a little railway depot there begins our yarn about Graveyard Mansion. Hehe. Graveyard mansion. Hehehehehe

SATAN:

Meooow

SFX:

Steam train departing from station. (fade out)

CURTIS:

Good heaven's driver, we're strangers here, just got off that train. You can't expect us to walk a distance you say is three miles at this time of night, or rather morning.

ALAN:

We'd be lost among your canebrake and bayous before we got half way.

DRIVER:

I'm powerful sorry gentleman but I wouldn't drive you to the old Tedgross plantation house at night for all the money in the New Orleans mint. And neither will anyone else in these here parts.

ALAN:

Why not?

CURTIS:

What's wrong with the Tedgross place?

DRIVER:

What do you all wanna go out there for?

CURTIS:

If it really makes any difference to you we've just inherited the plantation, we're down here to take possession.

DRIVER:

Your name's Blanchard then?

ALAN:

Yes

DRIVER:

I heard you two brothers were expected. Your lawyers had men from Baton Rouge this past week fixing the house up. They were glad to get away this morning after only spending the daytime there.

CURTIS:

Say will you please tell us exactly what you're driving at?

DRIVER:

Just this. If you gentlemen are wise you would take the first train back up north and forget the day the Tedgross place was ever left you. That old house ain't been lived in for nigh a hundred years. For good reason! Folks here call it Graveyard Mansion cause it's a house of the living dead.

ALAN:

Wha...?

DRIVER:

That's all I know gentleman, now goodnight.

CURTIS:

Hey come back here.

ALAN:

Wait a minute!

CURTIS:

Well, I'll be doggone. He drove off and left us flat.

ALAN:

He didn't even want to stay and talk about the place Curt.

CURTIS:

Haha, well now it looks like we've inherited a haunted house. (amused)

ALAN:

Our attorney never mentioned such things in his letters.

CURTIS:

He's an educated man, you don't think he'd go and write us such a crazy idea as that. Come on, we'd better start walking.

ALAN:

Walk, to Tedgross tonight?

CURTIS:

We haven't any choice, that chap was the only taxi man. There are no hotels in this little village. Er, lets go back to the depot, we'll get directions from the stationmaster and see if we can buy a lantern.

ALAN:

Oh, all right. Hahaha, that chump said our new home was called Graveyard Mansion

CURTIS:

Haha, Yes. (Cajun accent) Cause it's da house o' da living dead. Haha Poor superstitious idiot.

ALAN:

Oh hoho, imagine believing in ghosts in this 20th century. (laughter)

CURTIS:

How can people be so dumb? (laughter)

MUSIC:

transition

SFX:

bird chirps

ALAN:

There's the marker they told us to look for Kurt, the house must be just beyond those trees.

CURTIS:

I hope it is. (yawns) I'm tired.

ALAN:

Yeah so am I. This hike has taken longer than we expected. Must be nearly dawn.

CURTIS:

Yes. This Louisiana is eerie country at night. The ghastly Spanish moss hanging from the trees seems to writhe like something living.

SFX: bird chirps

ALAN:

Those clouds of mist that rise from the bayous take strange shapes, half human shapes. Puts one in the mood to almost believe in ghosts.

CURTIS: Would if we didn't have good sense. Wonder what it is these people fear
about our new property? That old Creole who sold us the lantern was more insistent than the cab driver we make no attempt to live in the place. Without being anymore explicit as to reasons.

ALAN:

He seemed afraid or ashamed to make any real explanation but like the other chap he said it was a house of the living dead.

CURTIS: That doesn't make sense even for a ghost story. Oh its just a lot of bunk.

ALAN:

Well if the tales are all bunk we will find out soon enough. Look.

SFX:

bird chirps

CURTIS:

We've arrived.

ALAN:

Kind of a spooky looking old place at that.

CURTIS:

Its different than I pictured it, sort of like a French chateau.

ALAN:

Our ancestor who built it was married to a French woman; she was probably responsible for its design.

CURTIS:

Lets go in.

SFX:

bird chirps

ALAN:

Wait Kurt, look there. Those tombstones.

CURTIS:

An old burial ground. Maybe that's why they call the house Graveyard Mansion.

ALAN:

That's what I was thinking.

CURTIS:

Come on.

ALAN:

Wait a minute, does it seem to you there is something moving in the darkness beyond those tombstones. Something white?

CURTIS:

Yes. Some of that ghastly mist that rises from the bayous.

ALAN:

I suppose so. It looked, it looked almost like a woman.

CURTIS:

Now lets go inside and get some sleep before we become as goofy as the natives we've talked to. Hold this lantern while I find those keys the lawyer sent us.

ALAN:

His men didn't fix the place up very well, there's a broken window.

SFX:

keys in lock, lock clicking open

CURTIS:

I see, there we are.

SFX:

creaking door.

CURTIS:

Black as coal mine in here.

SFX:

bat squeak

ALN:

What was that? Uh, bats! The place is full of them.

SFX:

more bat squeaks

CURTIS:

Ohhh, I wish I could find a lamp, this lantern isn't much good.

ALAN:

No, it's light doesn't seem to penetrate this darkness at all. Its almost an unnatural darkness

CURTIS:

Yes, its funny. The ventilation from that open window, it ought to smell sweet in here. There's an earthy odor about the place, like a tomb.

SFX:

door slams

ALAN:

What's that?

CURTIS:

The door slammed.

ALAN:

Curtis, down the hallway.

CURTIS:

A woman!

NETTY:

Woman's eerie laugh

CURTIS:

That laugh!

ALAN:

Well she's no figure of the mist.

CURTIS:

I'll soon find out who that is.

ALAN:

She's disappeared around the corner.

SFX:

door close

CURTIS:

She went through that little door, help me.

ALAN:

It's stuck.

CURTIS:

I've got it.

ALAN:

It leads to the cellar. There she goes, down those stairs.

CURTIS:

Stop, who are you?

ALAN:

She doesn't even look around.

CURTIS:

After her, hold up that lantern Alan.

Ahhh.

SFX:

bat squeaking

ALAN:

This bat knocked it from my hands.

CURTIS:

We're in the dark!

ALAN:

With her!

NETTY:

Woman's eerie laugh

ALAN:

That laugh again.

CURTIS:

Hold onto your nerve, I've got matches.

ALAN:

Well give me a light, for god sakes.

CURTIS:

Here!

ALAN:

Oh, thank god!

CURTIS:

The lantern isn't broken.

ALAN:

Light it quick.

CURTIS:

I have it, now we'll see what...

ALAN:

The woman's gone, the cellar's empty.

CURTIS:

Where did she go to? This isn't a true cellar, it's just a little vault. No way out save by these stairs.

ALAN:

She couldn't have passed us, its too narrow.

CURTIS:

The vault is bare with no place in which to hide.

ALAN:

Curtis, what's that set up in the wall?

CURTIS:

Why it's a burial crypt.

ALAN:

A burial crypt. A tomb. (manical laughter) That's where that woman hid. (keeps laughing)

CURTIS:

Alan, hold onto yourself, don't let your nerves go like that. Our senses have been fooled. Those stories we've heard, these ghastly mists we've seen. They've made us imagine things which can't be true. It's true. We haven't seen any woman, there is no woman here to see.

ALAN:

Yeah but we heard her laugh. (keeps laughing madly)

CURTIS:

No we only thought we did. Our imaginations are playing tricks I tell you.

ALAN:

(keeps laughing)

CURTIS:

Alan! Alan!

ALAN:

(gasping for breath and calming down.) you, you must be right.

CURTIS:

Of course I'm right. It's the only explanation.

ALAN:

There's an inscription on that tomb. What does it say?

CURTIS:

I'll see. It reads, here lies Antoinette Dumorave, wife of Adrian Blanchard. Born 1782 died 1804.

ALAN:

130 years ago. Antoinette Dumorave, she's the woman this mansion was built for.

CURTIS:

Yes, I remember her name now.

ALAN:

Come, lets get out of this cellar.

CURTIS:

Wait, that's funny.

ALAN:

What?

CURTIS:

Its cold as death down here but this slab is warm. Feel it.

ALAN:

Yes, its warm as life.

SFX:

Distant rooster.

CURTIS:

A rooster crowed, that means its dawn.

ALAN:

Lets get out of this cellar so I can see the light of day

CURTIS:

Go ahead, I'll follow. Peculiar, now this slab is growing cold.

MUSIC:

mysterious almost like the theme to Alfred Hitchcock presents

CURTIS:

But Alan , I've told you a thousand times that everything we thought we saw and heard and felt last night was pure imagination. Well that's simple common sense.

ALAN:

Oh I know it is and I've honestly agreed with you all day but ever since the sun went down. Oh I realize I'm acting like a baby Curt but this place has got my goat.

CURTIS:

You'll soon get over that. Cold shivers ran up and down my spine for hours after we cam out of that burial vault this morning. But now that I've had a little sleep I feel honestly cheerful about our inheritance.

ALAN:

Why, why do you suppose that single tomb is in the cellar while there is a graveyard right outside.

CURTIS:

I don't know. Oh I forgot to show you. Alan look what I found in the attic.

ALAN:

A miniature portrait, what a beautiful woman.

CURTIS:

Yes, here look at the back

ALAN:

Its engraved. To Adrian, from Antoinette.

CURTIS:

Uh-huh, its our lady of the tomb. Isn't she a knockout?

ALAN:

She must have been lovely.

CURTIS:

Our great, great uncle must have been mad about her. That's probably why she's buried away from the common herd. Poor thing. She was only 22 when she died.

ALAN:

A branch of the family still lives down here. Wonder if we have any female cousins who inherited her good looks.

CURTIS:

If we can find one I bet you'll have no more objections to living in this house. Oh you and I are going to be crazy about this place. Look out this window at that neglected lamp we're going to put in shape. Look at those great trees and that bayou shining in the moonlight.

ALAN:

And those old tombstones in the yard, it's nearly midnight, when they say the dead return to life.

CURTIS:

If you 're going to start that again I'm going to bed. You should turn in yourself.

SFX:

clock striking midnight long and slow

CURTIS:

It is midnight.

ALAN:

Yes, just midnight

SFX:

door closes

ALAN:

Curt, did you hear that door?

CURTIS:

The wind must have slammed it shut.

ALAN:

It may be the door from that cellar.

CURTIS:

No stop that, you're not going to pieces on me again.

ALAN:

Curt, look out this window, the woman we saw last night.

CURTIS:

Good lord. She won't get away from me this time!

ALAN:

Where are you going?

CURTIS:

After her!

ALAN:

Wait, wait! Don't leave me! Wait Curt, don't go near her

CURTIS:

Let me go!

ALAN:

No, no!

CURTIS: Alan.

ALAN:

She's turning back.

CURTIS:

She's coming toward us.

ALAN: She's something awful from the grave.

CURTIS:

I won't believe that. Let me go.

NETTY:

Woman's eerie laugh

ALAN:

That laugh.

CURTIS:

The same we heard last night.

ALAN:

Run I tell you, run. She's something risen from the dead.

CURTIS:

Lord help me I think you're right. Come on.

ALAN:

Run! Run!

NETTY:

(faint and distant but clear) Gentlemen, gentlemen.

ALAN:

Wait, she's calling to us.

CURTIS:

There's nothing dead about that voice.

NETTY:

Why do you gentlemen run away from me? Do you think I am a ghost perhaps?

ALAN:

Look at her coming there. A healthy looking flesh and blood girl.

NETTY:

Woman laughing.

ALAN:

She, she's laughing at us.

CURTIS:

Can you blame her. Of all the dumb benighted saps we are..

ALAN:

Yes we certainly are. Curtis!

CURTIS:

What is it now?

ALAN:

Look at her, she's the image of that miniature you found. The living image of a woman who's been dead a hundred years.

NETTY:

(chuckle) Gentlemen, if you permit I take the liberty to introduce myself.

MUSIC:

dramatic music similar to the Wizard of Oz tornado music.

OLD NANCY:

Hehehehe

SATAN:

Meow!

OLD NANCY:

Satan, if these folks come see us next time Old Nancy has a birthday she'll tell some more about Gravyard Mansion Hehehe. The house of the living dead. Hehehehe

SATAN:

Meow

MUSIC:

theme


ANNOUNCER:

And now let us join Old nancy, witch of Salem and Satan her wise black cat.

SFX:

wind

OLD NANCY:

Satan.

SATAN:

Meow?

OLD NANCY:

Ol' Nancy feels so good this ev'nen she's gonna get right down to business and cheer folks up spinning the finish of that comforting little yarn we begun last time they were here. Douse out those lights so we'll have it dark and cozy. We told of how them two young brothers from up north went down to Louiseannee to claim a fine big old mansion they'd inherited which folks call the house of the living dead. But our brothers didn't pay no attention to that kind o' talk. Hehe. Until they got out to the place and saw a ghostly figure that seemed to disappear in a tomb down cellar on which was the name of a French woman who had been dead a hundred years. Then next night they saw what appeared to be the same ghostly figure out on the grounds and they were about to run away from it when they seen it was a living breathing girl. A living girl who was the image of the girl buried in that tomb. That's where we left off. Draw up to tha fire and gaze into tha embers, gaze into 'em deep and 'ear the finish of our yawn about Graveyard Mansion hehe, Graveyard Mansion! Hehehehe

SATAN:

Meow!

SFX:

wind fade out

MUSIC:

intro

NETTY:

You two gentleman acted so afraid when you saw me coming toward you, you must have think I am a ghost.

CURTIS:

No words can express my humiliation at how we acted.

ALAN:

We're terribly ashamed but we'd heard so many strange tales about our new estate that we didn't think any living person would venture onto these grounds at night.

NETTY:

I come often when the moon is full like this and wander here while others sleep. This place has been so long deserted I have come to look upon it as my own. But now that you are here I must not trespass anymore.

ALAN:

Please don't feel that way about it.

CURTIS:

I should say not, look upon this place as still your own.

NETTY:

Thank you, perhaps I shall. Now I must say au revoir.

CURTIS:

May we see you home?

NETTY:

Thank you very much but I must go alone

ALAN:

Before you go may we know your name?

NETTY:

Oh I had forgot. I am Miss Netty Blanchard.

CURTIS:

Blanchard?

ALAN:

Well that is our name too.

NETTY:

So we are distant relatives mai ois? Goodnight.

ALAN:

We shall see you again.

NETTY:

Ah oui you will see me again.

CURTIS:

Goodnight.

ALAN:

Goodnight.

NETTY:

Goodnight (distant)

ALAN:

Isn't she a beauty? An absolute knock out. Curt, let me see that miniature again of the lady of the tomb.

CURTIS:

Here. The resemblance is startling isn't it?

ALAN:

The girl who just left here might have sat for this portrait.

CURTIS:

Alan, she said her name was Netty. That's a contraction for Antoinette.

ALAN:

Antoinette, that's the name...

CURTIS:

Of the woman in this portrait.

ALAN:

Coincidence isn't it?

CURTIS:

Yes. Coincidence. Oh come on, lets go to bed.

MUSIC:

transition.

CURTIS:

Alan, Alan wake up. Are you going to sleep all day?

ALAN:

Huh?

CURTIS:

Well its morning, time to rise and shine.

ALAN:

I was dreaming.

CURTIS:

It must have been a pleasant dream you didn't want to snap out of it.

ALAN:

I dreamed that girl, the one we met last night came into this room and kissed me.

CURTIS:

Well that sounds nice. Get up! We've got a lot of work to do.

ALAN:

Right away. Queer, I feel weak as a kitten.

CURTIS:

Hmm, you don't look so good.

ALAN:

I have a funny pain.

CURTIS:

Where?

ALAN:

Here, on my throat.

CURTIS:

There's a little mark there, as though you've been bitten.

ALAN:

Funny, that's where I dreamed she kissed me.

MUSIC:

transistion

CURTIS:

The house is just beyond that next turn in the road doctor. Turn left.

DOCTOR:

I know the way. You said it has just been a week since the onset of your brother's illness?

CURTIS:

Yes, I didn't think someone could waste away so suddenly. He looks as though every drop of blood is being drained from his body.

DOCTOR:

You should have come for me sooner.

CURTIS:

Oh I wanted to but he and Miss Blanchard insisted there was nothing really the matter with him.

DOCTOR:

Who is Miss Blanchard, a relative of course?

CURTIS:

A very distant one, we only met her since we came down here. She's with my brother now. When he recovers they're, they're to be married.

DOCTOR:

They became engaged on very short acquaintance.

CURTIS:

Yes. There is the house up ahead.

DOCTOR:

I know, I know Graveyard Mansion very well. This strange mark on your brother's throat. You say it has become more enflamed each day?

CURTIS:

Yes, its as though the fangs of some beast had enetered there. The house was full of bats hwen we arrived doctor. I've heard of vampire bats. Do you suppose?

DOCTOR:

No I do not believe your brother is the victim of a vampire bat. Here we are.

CURTIS:

There's Miss Blanchard at the door. Netty, is Alan all right? I brought the doctor.

NETTY:

The doctor comes too late.

CURTIS:

What do you mean? Not Alan?

NETTY:

Your brother is dead.

CURTIS:

No. No.

DOCTOR: Graveyard Mansion. Graveyard Mansion.

CURTIS:

Oh (sobs)

MUSIC:

sad transition

DOCTOR:

Come away from that window son. There is no way for us to bring your brother back.

CURTIS:

No, he's buried in that graveyard now. Doctor what killed him. What made that mark upon his throat? What drained the blood from his body?

DOCTOR: As yet it was nothing recognized by natural science but science refuses to recognize many things it should endeavor to know and explain. But never mind that now, your brothers fiancÚ was not at the funeral this afternoon.

CURTIS: Because she couldn't bare to see himlying in his coffin. You heard her say last night...

CURTIS:

Oui, I heard her excuse. You never see this girl except at night.

CURTIS:

Why no but the reason is...

DOCTOR:

I have also heard her excuse for that. I thought knew by sight every soul in these parts yet I have never seen that girl till the night you brought me here.

CURTIS:

You don't mean to imply she had anything to do with Alan's death.

DOCTOR:

I imply nothing.

SFX:

clock striking midnight long and slow

DOCTOR:

Look it is midnight, time for Miss Blanchard's promised call. I am most anxious to improve our acquaintance.

CURTIS:

I see her coming beyond those gravestones. Isn't she beautiful?

DOCTOR:

You love that woman.

CURTIS:

Doctor?

DOCTOR:

You love her as your brother did.

CURTIS:

Yes. While Alan lived I denied it even to myself but. Doctor its as though she's cast a spell upon me. She's... so beautiful.

CURTIS:

And so like the miniature you showed me of a woman dead a hundred years.

CURTIS:

Why do you torture me with these frightful questions, these frightful doubts. Why is she so like a woman dead a hundred years? Why does she only appear at midnight? Why won't she tell me where she lives? Why?

DOCOTR:

Go and meet her, she is almost at the door. We may find an answer to our questions... at the dawn!

MUSIC:

piece from "The Sorcerer's Apprentice"

NETTY:

I never see such a superstitious man of Medicine Doctor Brochard. The way you talk you almost have me believe in ghosts.

DOCTOR:

I believe in ghosts Mademoiselle Blanchard, in ghosts and vampires.

CURTIS:

Vampires doctor?

NETTY:

Oh such talk is foolish no people now accept such things.

DOCTOR:

The thought is too fearful for men's mind to dwell upon perhaps. Have you heard what vampires are Mademoiselle Blanchard?

NETTY:

Some other time you tell me, I must be going now.

DOCTOR:

Mademoiselle will find the answer very interesting. Vampires are those evil spirits sometimes called the dead alive. It is said they rise from their grave at midnight clothed in human flesh controlled by blood drained by living bodies.

NETTY:

Very interesting but I must be going.

DOCTOR:

But you haven't heard yet all. At midnight the vampire can rise mademoiselle but it must return to its grave at dawn.

NETTY:

Yes, yes but I must be leaving now.

DOCTOR:

Of course it is very late, or rather early and dawn is near.

CURTIS:

Doctor what are you driving at?

DOCTOR:

I believe in vampires my boy and dangers of the darkness. Since Miss Blanchard will not permit you or me to see her home I suggest she wait for daylight to come for her protection.

NETTY:

You keep me here with talk, I must be home!

DOCTOR:

But a few minutes should make very little difference and dawn is nearly here.

NETTY:

Move. Let me pass.

DOCTOR:

You are as anxious to reach your home as the vampire is to reach its tomb.

CURTIS:

Doctor!

NETTY:

You are insulting.

DOCTOR:

No I am accusing!

CURTIS:

Doctor Brochard!

DOCTOR:

Accusing the fiend who killed your brother, accusing the evil soul of graveyard Mansion.

NETTY:

Stand from that door and let me pass!

DOCTOR:

No!

NETTY:

Let me pass I say.

DOCTOR:

No, the dawn is coming light. The rays of light rob the fiend of the power that darkness lends them. Look the first streaks of dawn shine in the sky.

NETTY:

Let me pass!

CURTIS:

Doctor you are mad, stand aside and let her go.

DOCTOR:

No if she is a normal woman and not the vile undead let her remain in this room one minute more.

NETTY:

I cannot, I am late! Late, late, late. (fades out)

CURTIS:

Doctor, she's turned around and ran the other way.

DOCTOR:

Follow her!

CURTIS:

She is going into the cellar.

DOCTOR:

I knew she would. Quick and you will see the truth.

CURTIS:

No!

DOCTOR:

Dawn, she has gone home.

CURTIS:

I don't believe.

DOCTOR:

You shall have proof.

CURTIS:

What are you going to do?

DOCTOR:

Open the tomb of Antoinette who has been dead a hundred years.

MUSIC:

dramatic transition

SFX:

hammer/chisel on stone

CURTIS:

This is sacrilege. We have no right to violate a tomb of the dead.

DOCTOR:

The vampire deserves no mercy from either God or man.

CURTIS:

Such things as vampires can't exist.

SFX:

hammer/chisel on stone stop

DOCTOR:

Well I am finished my labour. Help me lift this lid and you will see.

CURTIS:

I must have proof. Antoinette Blanchard has been dead a hundred years, we shall find nothing but dust.

DOCTOR:

Help me lift the lid.

CURTIS:

The girl I love can't be in that coffin.

DOCTOR:

Help me lift the lid. (grunts)

CURTIS:

I will

SFX:

Both men lifting, stone sliding.

DOCTOR:

Regard, there is your proof.

CURTIS:

Antoinette

DOCTOR:

Yes, tonight as she was a hundred years ago the same. Preserved in evil life from the blood of your brother and many others. So has this house gained its name of graveyard mansion. But there is a way to end the vampire. This sharpened wooden stake, above her undead heart I place it and I drive it home.

SFX: Hammer on wooden stake.

NETTY:

Screams!

CURTIS:

She screamed. Her body is crumbling to dust, before my eyes.

DOCTOR:

The vampire is no more, the living dead is dead forever.

CURTIS:

She's gone, she and my brother, all that I loved

DOCTOR:

But the world has lost a scourge and now Graveyard mansion is nothing but a name.

MUSIC:

sorrowful string music

OLD NANCY:

Well that's tha end of that one Satan. You folks come and see Old Nancy next time she 'as a birthday. Hehehe

SATAN:

Meow!

MUSIC:

theme music