Generic Radio Workshop Script Library (BACK)

Series: The Witch's Tale
Show: The Flying Dutchman
Date: Feb 01 1932

SFX:

Intro Theme

Announcer:

We bring you The Witch's Tale. Written and produced by Alonzo Deen Cole.

SFX:

Theme continues.

Announcer:

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

SFX: Music comes to an end

Satan:

(small) Meow

Old Nancy:

Heheheh. Hundred and eleven year old I be today, yes sir a hundred an eleven year old. Satan?

Satan:

Meow?

Old Nancy:

If everyone would douse out them lights and make it nice and dark we'll get right down to business. Draw up to the fire and gaze into the embers. Gave into them deep and soon you'll see the hands of time turn back four hundred years. Soon you'll be upon the ocean, off the Cape of Good Hope, that's down in Africa. There upon the stormy waters rolls a ship whose captains name is Van Der Dekken. That's his name now hehe. But soon he'll be called by sailor men The Flying Dutchmen. Hehe The Flying Dutchmen. Hahahaha!

SFX:

Music (adventurous)

SFX:

Waves and wind upon the deck of a ship in a storm.

Capt:

Bend out those topsails. Lend a hand here. Breymer! Gaga Breymer!

Breymer:

Coming mein heir Captain.

Capt:

The men carry on we are lost. Bend up those topsails.

Breymer:

Right here Van Der Dekken. The men will not go up the yards again.

Capt:

Will not sayest thou?

Breymer:

Say sir. No man alive could keep his grip on the yard against this storm. It is certain death to try, already we've lost three.

Capt:

Then we lose them, I'll round this cursed cape.

Breymer:

But mein heir we strive against the winds.

Capt:

Silence! I am master here. Does thou question my commands by the board I will fling ye to join your mates of whom ye spake. Now bend me up those topsails.

Breymer:

Aye sir! The man is mad. Sail he says against headwinds.

Capt:

Full rudder to the wind.

Helmsman:

Aye sir.

Usbecker:

Captain. Mein heir captain.

Capt:

Here Usbecker.

Usbecker:

The lead sail it is torn to ribbons.

Capt:

Then mend it and spread it on the yards once more.

Usbecker:

It will but tear again, no sail cloth spun could weather this gale. Strip to bare poles mein heir, turn your back to the wind and seek a port.

Capt:

Not I. No storm can be John Van Der Dekken's master.

SFX:

Big wooden crack.

Different Sailors shouting:

Look the main Mast! No! Over the boards! The main mast has been torn away.

Capt:

You cursed storm. I'll best ye yet. You may take each foreign poll but then I'll sail the hull into they teeth.

Crew:

Captain, mein heir captain!

Capt:

Here.

Crew:

Two hands swept over side sir with the mast.

Capt:

Those that are left will do their work. Breymer!

Breymer:

Yes sir.

Capt: Give all men axes, clear that wreckage. Free the deck and rig a Jury Mast.

Sailor:

Mein heir, let's brave no more.

Crew:

Have the helmsman turn about.

Crew 2:

Let's run with the wind and seek a port..

Capt:

Nay, We go ahead, we round this cape.

Crew:

But four days already we have tried and failed.

Sailor:

Turn back, it is God's will.

Capt:

Then God's will must bend, for mine shall triumph.

Sailor:

Send us Blessings.

Crew:

Sacrilege.

Capt:

Ah cower ye fools in superstitious fear. Ye shall see me round this cape in spite of heaven, hell, or man. Keep her head toward the wind helmsman. You others clear the deck. I round this Cape.

Crewman:

Look at him going there, he's mad, mad!

Breymer:

Aye, mad with love of self. Mad with lust of power.

Crewman:

He has been master of man and ship too long, and now he would command the elements.

Sailor:

If he persists we are all dead men.

Crewman:

I say we mutiny!

Breymer:

Be not a fool. No man of us is armed, his belt is full of loaded pistols. He will not hesitate to kill.

Crew:

Think the old priest we have as passenger could bring him to his senses?

Breymer:

Nay. Ye heard the captain say his will was gods. The presence of God's priest would enflame his mind some more.

Crew:

Breymer, the priest has come on deck. There.

Priest:

I give thee greetings sons.

Crew:

Oh holy father, though love is life get thee again below.

Sailor:

Aye before John Van Der Dekken vents his spite on thee.

Capt:

(distant shouting drawing nearer) Into the winds, into the winds.

Breymer:

Quick father, he returns.

Priest:

Nay my sons, I fear not your bitter captain.

Capt:

(Harsh laugh) So the man of God has crawled on deck?

Breymer:

He has seen you.

Priest:

Greetings mein heir Van Der Dekken.

Capt:

Well Priest, how do you like the wind your master sends this evening? How like thee his empty thunder! Haha. Stay and watch me best the storm he sends. Watch me round this cape against his will.

Priest:

I have watched for four days and seen you fail.

Capt:

I shall fail no longer. I shall win my way tonight!

Priest:

Only he can win who strives by faith.

Capt:

Faith I have, faith in myself alone.

Priest:

No man can live by and for himself alone.

Capt:

Then who shall he live for then, another man all more selfish than himself? I know a man, I know my kind. Perhaps he should put faith in women, ha, the best of them are devil's from their cradles. But though tells me, have faith in God. Haha! He is the greatest lie of them all!

Crewman:

His blasphemy will kill us all!

Sailor: Beware!

Priest:

His voice cries from the storm rash man, it bids thee fall upon your knees and beg his pardon.

Capt:

Say ye so. Then hear the voice of John Van Der Dekken! By the servants I shall show by what contempt I hold the master. Walk me to the rail priest! For thy are going by the board.

Crew:

No captain.

Sailor: By the grace of god.

Capt:

Now stand back! I shoot the man who moves to stay me.

Priest:

Rich, not my lives were mine my son.

Capt:

So stand until I throw thee to the sea. But first thou art who art supposed to reign above hark to my defiance. The life of this thy servant shall be to thee my challenge.

SFX:

Thunder crash

Capt:

And I'm as loud as thunder. I laugh at your impotent rage!

Breymer:

Watch out captain.

Crew:

He's got a gun.

Sailor:

He'll defy us all.

Capt:

Hear me God. Despite thee and all thy heaven I will kill thy men, I will best thy storm, I will round this cursed cape!

SFX:

Thunder
All Crew: Ohhhs and sceams of fright

Crewman:

That lightning, it struck the ship.

Sailor:

It was sent by God.

Crewmember:

The gale has died to silence. Look!

Sailor:

In the bow, a blinding light.

Sailor 2:

Was sent by heaven.

Entire Crew:

Oooohs and gasps.

Crewmember:

What though who that has taken shape from the now dazzling form.

Angel:

I am a messenger, God has deigned to answer thee John Van Der Dekken.

Capt:

I, I did not mean...

Angel:

Fall unto thy knees and harken to thy doom.

Capt:

Spare me. Spare my life.

Angel: Thou shall not die, to live shall be thy curse. In the teeth of a gale shalt thou fly forever, always seeking harbour, never reaching port. A phantom ship of death shall be thy home and your crew shall be the blackened souls of sinners of the sea. Thou their master and their slave shall be alone of flesh and blood. Behold thy living tomb as it rises from the depths.

Entire crew:

Gasps and shocked group response.

Capt:

Anything but that. It's a hunk of horror.

Angel:

It is thy eternal home.

Capt:

Oh nay, nay I beg, it is a nightmare ship. Black as night with sails the hue of blood. Oh please, oh please. Grinning, fleshless spectres line it's rails. Oh nay, nay! Forgive, oh father, holy priest, thou art a man of god, here to plead and beg for me. H I am forced, forced upon this awful barque. Have pity, have pity.

Priest:

Stay messenger of God, prey thee wait. No soul is ever lost, even this man's can be saved, redeemed.

Angel:

His soul is black with selfish pride. Only love can wash it clean.

Priest:

He will need man's love to find love.

Angel:

His fate has been decreed. What man here shall share his doom? To aid him in the search.

Priest:

I.

Sailor:

Father?

Angel:

Think well old man, they days of Earthly strife are numbered. Thy reward and rest at hand. If thou would teach him love thou too must sail on this ghostly barque. A living man.amongst the dead.

Priest:

I am ready. I go with thee son.

Capt:

A companion. Flesh and blood. Thou givest me the life I would have taken from thee.

Angel:

Oh foolish soul. And thou did say all living creatures were selfish as thyself. Thy curse was to be eternal but this good man's sacrifice has won me again to hope of heaven.

Capt:

I shall not have to sail....

Angel:

Thou shalt sail upon thon barque as I have said but once each seven years your phantom ship may catch a port and thou for the space of a single moon may seek thy love thyself and cleanse your soul of pride. Come.

Priest:

Come my son.

Capt:

I come. Seven years among the dead, forever flying into the gale. Then a port for a single moon, oh lord, how long, how long?

SFX:

Music transition.

Capt: Two hundred years and eighty on this ghastly ship of death forever flying into the gale. Thirty times and nine I've been in port for a single moon and now the hour draws nigh that I shall rest on shore again.

Priest:

And bitterness is in thy soul John. Thy heart is filled with plans of evil for thy visit among men.

Capt:

Aye I shall employ this moon ashore to bring dishonour, death, destruction in my path.

Priest:

No, have the centuries of suffering taught you nothing.

Capt:

Yeah by example of thy God they have taught me hate for I have endured his awful vengeance.

Priest:

Oh vengeance on thee has never been his purpose. His plan is thy regeneration.

Capt:

So this loving father destroys his son with the curse of living death to save him? Hehe Cease your lying sophistry, my centuries of pain have confirmed the truth I knew of old. That love is but a lie and self is all that matters.

Priest:

Yet for two hundred years and eighty I have been thy comrade on this phantom ship of death

Capt:

And how at first I thought it was love that made thee share my awful fate. Hahah But my brain at last searched out the truth. That torture which is worse than death to me meant to thee but longer life. Thou were old about to die and thou seeming sacrifice has let thee live almost three centuries beyond thy span.

Priest:

Poor John I pity thee. How more than blind are they who will not see

Capt:

Oh pity me not. Listen priest, thirty times and nine now have I gone ashore, for one brief fleeting moon in each long seven years. Each time I have been humbled seeking that love I know now doth not exist. Everywhere I found distrusting looks and fear. Though men knew not that I am he who they call the Flying Dutchmen, they sense I am a being set apart. I am of the dead who live. In mine eyes men see the horror stamped by centuries of pain. Thirty times and nine I sought for love and found but hate and now I shall employ my moon ashore to pay.
Our tepid ship draws into port again for a moon I join the world of men who worship thy revengeful god. And I shall bring dishonour, death, destruction in my path dost hear me god of vengeance. I go ashore to pay thee for my curese. I go ashore to pay!

SFX:

Music transistion.

Hehehe Next time I have a birthday Satan. We will tell folks what the Flying Dutchmen did when he went ashore for the fortieth time. heheheh

Satan: Meoooow

SFX:

End music
Old Nancy: Hehehe

Satan:

Meooow

Old Nancy:

A hundred and three year old I be today. Yes sir going on a hundred an four. Now if oyu folks will just douse out them lights we will spin you the finish of our yarn about that famous sailor man we'd begun last time you were here.

Satan:

Meow.

Old Nancy:

That's right Satan, we told how that fella Van Der Dekken for his blashphemy against his lord was condemned to sail the seas until his selfish soul is cleansed by love which he is allowed to come ashore and look for once each seven years. Well sir. To help him in his search a good old priest volunteered to share his curse but his help didn't do much good. For when we left them... well draw up to the fire and gaze into the embers. Hear for yourselves just how we left this Van Der Dekken. Hehehe.

Capt:

Thirty times and nine now have I gone ashore, for one brief fleeting moon in each long seven years. Thirty times and nine I sought for love and found but hate and now I shall employ my moon ashore to to bring dishonour, death, destruction in my path dost hear me god of vengeance. I go ashore to pay thee for my curse. I go ashore to pay!

Old Nancy:

Hehehe. Now gaze into the embers deep and hear the finish of our yarn about the Flying Dutchmen heheh the Flying Dutchman. Hehehehe.

Satan:

Meow.

SFX:

Music (adventurous)

Peter:

Hehehe. In this enlightened year of 1810 even such an old sea dog as yourself can't believe the ___ yarn of the Flying Dutchman.

Henry:

Out there in Portsmouth harbour is my proof. If that ship isn't the Dutchman then I ain't me mother's son.

Niece:

Now uncle Henry you merely say that cause it's a dingy looking old hulk you didn't see come in last night.

Henry:

I tell you no one saw that ship come in. And I tell you I recognize it. For nigh three hundred year every sailor man on the upon the seven seas have seen that black two decker fly by him on at least once. In a dead calm I've seen it across our bows like lightning, backwards with every stay and sail straining against a gale. While we on a human ship couldn't even smell a breeze.

Peter:

Are you sure you weren't sampling the ship's rum barrel when you saw all that? (Chuckles)

Niece:

(chuckles along)

Henry:

Yes, yes I am. If, if that out there is a natural ship then why don't we see hide or hair of any living creature on its rails or the yards?

Niece:

Oh look uncle Henry, there's a small boat coming from our port side now.

Henry:

Well I'll be. When did they launch that?

Peter:

While you were busy talking.

Henry:

And there is two men in it. Two living men is all the ghost ship carries.

Niece:

But neither those men or their clothing looks three centuries old and you say that's the Flying Dutchman.

Henry:

The Dutchman don't grow any older, that's part of his curse. And neither does the priest who travels with him. They get new clothes every time they comes ashore every seven years.

Peter:

They mean to land about here I think.

Henry:

I'm leaving before they do, you and Julie better come too.

Peter:

Nonsense

Henry:

Alright but I'm a warning you not to have anything to do with the big fell in the small boat.

Peter:

Henry, such superstition is unchristian-like. To show you what I think of your ridiculous fears I'm going to invite those men to be my guests.

Henry:

What? Peter Cooper, you're going to take them into your house?

Peter:

If they care to come.

Henry:

You don't know what you're saying, why the Dutchman's a holy devil.

Julie:

(giggling) You make me hope that big man in the boat is your Flying Dutchman uncle Henry. He sounds interesting.

Peter:

Indeed he does.

Julie:

They're landing papa.

Henry:

And I'm a going before the Dutchman's eyes light on me.

Julie:

(laughing) Look at uncle Henry run.

Peter:

His superstitious credulity almost discourages me for humankind.

Julie:

Here the strangers come, speak to them papa.

Peter:

Good morning gentlemen.

Priest:

Greetings to thee friend.

Capt:

Aye greetings. Why does thou not run at my approach?

Peter:

Run?

Julie:

Why should we run?

Capt:

Ah, they companion did.

Julie:

He, he had an appointment elsewhere.

Peter:

Gentlemen, as you are strangers and our Portsmouth Inns are not of the best I wish to invite you to be our guests.

Capt:

Thy guests?

Priest:

Thank thee truly but....

Peter:

Do not hesitate I am nly a humble minister but my daughter and I will strive to make you comfortable.

Capt:

Thou art a minister? A man of god?

Peter:

Yes, yes.

Capt:

And thou art his daughter?

Julie:

Yes.

Capt:

(laughing) A minister and his child.

Priest:

Kind thanks to thee sir but my comrade and I must be...

Capt:

Say we can, we shall. I thank thee worthy servant of the lord. I accept thy invitation gladly.

SFX:

Transition music.

Priest:

John, thou must not abuse the hospitality of this good man's house, you must not harm his child.

Capt:

I have merely suggested she take a walk with me this afternoon.

Priest:

I know thou meanest wrong to her because she is the daughter of a man who serves the god you hate. I shall warn her and her father. Tell them who and what thou really are.

Capt:

Listen fool, the tale of the Flying Dutchman they call but idle superstition. Thou shall tell these people nothing! They would not believe thee until I prove the words you say and then, it will be too late.

Julie:

(from a distance) Captain, are you ready for our walk?

Capt:

Aye, aye come to me my child. Farewell priest. Here I am back again from seven years of living death. To the god of hate who has condemned me I have a sacrifice to make.

SFX:

Music transition (suspenseful)

Julie:

If we walk any further into the forest captain we will be late returning home.

Capt:

Only a little distance more.

Julie:

Well we're completely off the beaten track.

SFX:

Bird Chirp

Capt:

Aye. Should one die among these trees and thickets it might be many months, ere their body is found.

Julie:

What made you think of such an awful thing as that?

Capt:

The thought would worry one who is left alive, a father for instance, might suffer long and keenly ere his child's for instance fate was known.

Julie:

If I was lost it would kill my father. Hehe, but nothing will happen to me with you here to protect me.

Capt:

Nay. Thou dost trust me?

Julie:

Why of course I trust you.

Capt:

Thou art a child, thy purity enables thee to read men's hearts.

Julie:

That's what my father says, and I know your heart is good because in one whose eyes show such unhappiness, any vil that was there before must have been completely burned away.

SFX:

Bird chirps

Capt:

Little fool. What would thee think if I taught thee different!

Julie:

Stop acting as if you meant to frighten me captain and sit down on this log.

Capt:

Aye.

Julie:

Come.

Capt:

I sit close beside thee. Thou hast never shown fear of me as others.

Julie:

Why should I show fear f you?

Capt:

Oh, no reason. Except that people always do.

Julie: Captain. I think someone ought to talk to you.

Capt:

Of what?

Julie:

Yourself. I don't think you know yourself at all.

Capt:

Ah thou thinkest not?

Julie:

I think you're the sort of man who thinks he's awfully bad and who tries to be bad. All because he's afraid to let folks see what's underneath.

Capt:

That so?

Julie:

Yes, you're exactly like a little boy who lives next door to us. When he's outside in the garden he's always at playing Indian and scalping people. Then I've seen him through the window of his room at night when he thinks he's all alone fondling his sisters doll.

Capt:

Thou sayest I resemble him?!

Julie:

Exactly. I've seen him stand out in the rain while the lightning flashed and thunder roared just to prove how brave he is when all that time I knew he wanted to hide his head in his mothers lap and cry in fear.

SFX:

Bird chirps

Julie:

You're exactly like him underneath.

Capt:

Well I, I

Julie:

That's just the way he glares at me.

Capt:

Oh, little fool!

Julie:

And he's rude and ill mannerly just as you are.

Capt:

I...!

Julie :

How long since you've seen your mother captain?

Capt:

I... I never saw her.

Julie:

Have any sisters?

Capt:

Nay!

Julie:

Ever married?

Capt: Nay!!

Julie:

In love?

Capt: Nay!

Julie:

Well that explains everything.

SFX:

Bird chirps

Julie:

You were never brought up, you only had god to turn to with your troubles. No wnder your eyes show such unhappiness. For God must seem so far away sometimes to one who has no other friends.

Capt:

(whisper) I.... he does seem.... Awfully far away.

Julie:

How secluded this place is. If one was lost here they never would be found. Come captain, why don't you kill me as you planned?

Capt:

You knew?

Julie:

Yes.

SFX:

Bird chirps

Julie:

But I wasn't very afraid. You see, I know the little boy next door.

Capt:

(Chuckles) Imagine him, scalping people.

Julie: Suppose you, suppose you put your head in my lap and cry?

Capt:

Why?

Julie:

Because sometimes when nothing seems near it seems to help.

Capt:

Why? (sadder)

Julie:

I don't think you've cried in a long, long time.

Capt:

Father forgive thy foolish child. (sobs) Father forgive thy foolish child.

SFX: quiet peaceful transition music
SFX: Waves upon the shore.

Capt:

Farewell Julie.

Julie:

Goodbye captain.
Peter: I hate to see you gentlemen go, your short stop here has brought us happiness.

Capt:

My ship awaits Mr. Cooper, I cannot tarry longer. But my old friend will stay ashore with thee.

Priest:

John, my son.

Capt:

This voyage I take a lone. Thou shall share my punishment no longer.

Priest: Thou has found at last....

Capt:

I have found myself.

Peter:

I do not understand you gentlemen.

Capt:

My comrade might explain when I am gone. And now, Ere I bid a last farewell Mr. Cooper ay I kiss your daughter once, as a father, on the brow.


Julie:

I will answer that John. Kiss me as a lover, on the lips.

Capt:

Aye, oh I did not mean to speak. I do love thee Julie, I do love thee.

Julie:

And I love you.

Capt; Oh Nay child, love me not. Another will come for thee, one of thy age and goodness. One worthy of thy love.

Julie:

I want no one but you. John, take me with you on your voyage.
Capt: I cannot! Take your arms from about me, I must go!

Julie:

Oh no, John come back!

Capt:

Farewell

Julie:

John wait. Your black ship is not ready. I see no sign of crew.

Capt:

They are waiting, waiting for my coming.

Julie:

He is in the small boat, leaving me.

Peter:

His skiff flies through the water as if by magic. Look he has already reached the black ships side.

Julie:

He's climbing up a ladder.

Peter:

He's aboard.

Julie:

Look the sails of his black ship full but there is no wind.

Peter:

It's putting off to sea.

Priest:

Farewell my son, my comrade.

Julie:

Come back to me John, I love you.

Capt:

And I love thee. Farewell forever.

Julie:

No, not forever. Father, his ship is sinking.

Peter:

Sinking beneath the waters

Priest:

Listen

Capt:

I love thee, I love thee!

Priest:

Oh gracious father my prayers are answered. His long voyage is at an end, you've taken back his soul

Old Nancy:

Hehehehehe

Satan:

Meow

Old Nancy:

And now you see why the Flying Dutchman is seen upon the seas no more. Well that's the end of that one Satan. Hahahahaha

Satan:

Meooooow

SFX:

End music