Nothing Behind the Door

Episode #1
Date: 08 June 1947

ANNOUNCER: The Mutual Broadcasting System presents the first of a series of
new and unusual dramatic programs, written and directed by Wyllis Cooper, and
featuring Ernest Chappell.

(MUSIC ... THEME ... UNDER)

CHAPPELL: Quiet, please! ... Quiet, please!

(MUSIC OUT)

ROSS: (NARRATES) It's something like sixty-eight hundred feet above sea level 
-- a little house, maybe twenty feet long, fifteen feet wide. It's made of 
corrugated iron sheets with a high peaked roof. It sort of hangs over the edge 
of the mountain top, with nothing but the spikes of pine trees stretching all 
the way down to Pasadena, better than a mile below you. 

(MUSIC IN AND UNDER)

D'you ever get out to California? Well, if you do, go up there sometime and 
take a look at that little house. But look at it through the fence that 
surrounds it -- that's far enough. Through the fence. You go out Foothill 
Boulevard toward Pasadena, but you turn off on Angeles Crest Highway at 
LaCanada. Just keep on drivin' uphill, you'll get there, just keep right on 
going. The top of Mount Wilson is the end of the highway. 

(MUSIC OUT)

You ever look through a big telescope? At the sky, at night? At the things up 
there? Things so far away you sprain your brain just trying to imagine how far 
away they are? With nothing between you and them? Billions and billions of 
miles of nothing? I don't know what it does to you but, brother, I freeze. 

Listen, do you know there are holes in the sky? No, I mean it, I've seen 'em. 
There's a thing in the constellation Andromeda -- no, no, no, wait a minute, 
I'm not gonna get technical with you, just listen. There's this thing, 
astronomers call it the Horsehead Nebula. You know what it is? It's a hole. 
It's a great big patch of nothing. Just ... nothing. There aren't any stars 
there, just - it's just a hole. 

No, nobody knows anything about it. Astronomers look at it, they take
pictures of it - and there it stays. There it is now, and tomorrow, and the
next day, and a million years from now - and it's been there always. Yes, it
has. It's so far away - that what you see now is the way it looked a billion
years ago -- before there was anybody to see it, friend. And there's lots
more of those places. So what's all this got to do with the little house up on 
top of Mount Wilson? I'll tell you. 

(MUSIC IN AND UNDER)

This was quite some time ago. I'd been living in California, see, for several
years. I had a couple of bucks, had a nice little place near Van Nuys --
that was before the Valley got to be so popular with movie people, radio
comics, people like that. And it wasn't bad living alone, waking up in the
middle of the night hearing the Southern Pacific Lark whistle for a
crossing out around Chatsworth... listening to a dog howling way out
across the valley... going back to sleep. 

I don't get back to sleep so easy these days. 

Well, these people from Cleveland were out there, Aldo Manucci and Hugh Grant. 
We used to be great friends, Aldo and Hugh and I, so nothing would do but 
they'd come to stay with me. Why, it was all right, I had a Dodge convertible, 
the boys got quite a kick out of California. That's how we came to go up to 
Mount Wilson that day. Aldo and Hugh had been, uh, you know, uh, lookin' 
around for odd places, they had some ideas. 

(MUSIC OUT)

So one day we were having breakfast and they were looking at an Automobile
Club bulletin, Aldo said, "Let's go to Mount Wilson." So we did. 

So we did. I'd been up there once before. You know how it is in California: I 
knew everything. 

Well, I thought I knew everything. 

I found out different.

(MUSIC IN AND UNDER)

We were inside the big dome where the hundred inch telescope is. It's like
being inside a ...  giant's watch. The telescope is in the middle - a big
spidery framework with ladders climbing all over it up under this dome.
The tourists stand on a kind of a catwalk around the edge while the
astronomer explains as much as thinks the appleknockers'll understand. There
was just a few of us that day, standing close to the little kind of pulpit, 
listening with our mouths open. Yeah, it is like a pulpit. I got to thinkin' 
that day how the astronomer looked like a ... priest up there. Nice, old, 
white-haired fella -- like a priest. And I was thinkin' he was talkin' about 
the heavens, too. I'd seen it all before, but my mouth was as wide open as 
Hugh's and Aldo's.

(MUSIC OUT)

ASTRONOMER: ...and the earth is moving through space, too. It moves around the 
sun at the rate of about eighteen and a half miles per second.  

SOUND: (CROWD MURMURS)

ASTRONOMER: So therefore, you see, we must, in order to keep this telescope 
focused accurately on the celestial objects we are observing, neutralize those 
motions mechanically. The telescope itself, as you will observe, is 
controllable in any direction by this motor. Watch it, if you please. 

SOUND: (DOME MOTOR HUMS) 

ASTRONOMER: Notice the motion of the telescope ... and the final
movement, the rotation of the entire dome exactly synchronized with the speed
of the Earth through space. Watch through the shutters above you, please ... 

SOUND: (DOME MOTOR HUMS) 

MANUCCI: Lookit. Lookit, Ross. 

ROSS: Yeah, I see. 

MANUCCI: Look outside. We--We ain't moving, the sky is going by. Lookit, Hugh!

GRANT: I see it. 

ROSS: It's an optical illusion, Aldo. 

ASTRONOMER: No, it's not an optical illusion. In relation to space this spot
we are on is standing still. Through these motions here in the dome, the
mirror of the telescope is kept aimed exactly at one spot far out in space. 

GRANT: What's "space," mister? 

ASTRONOMER: It's ... nothing. 

MANUCCI: What about the air? 

ASTRONOMER: There are a few miles of air, my friend, and then ... nothing. 

MANUCCI: Huh. 

ROSS: Well, stars. 

ASTRONOMER: Yes, stars. 

ROSS: Sure.

ASTRONOMER: And the places where ... there are no stars.

(MUSIC ... AN ACCENT, THEN UNDER)

ROSS: (NARRATES) My skin twitched a little when he said that -- "the places 
where there are no stars." Did yours? 

Well, the show was over and we went outside into the sunlight. We walked 
across the long wooden bridge -- there's a deep gully in front of the dome -- 
and down a little path past the thing they call a coelostat - a small dome on 
legs about a hundred feet high. Thing they study the sun and sunspots and 
things like that with. 

Ah, it was quiet up there along toward the middle of the afternoon. There was 
a chill in the air. We were just talking. It's an odd place and you get kind 
of impressed. The people impress you. 

(MUSIC ... AN ACCENT, THEN OUT)

ROSS: (NARRATES) The astronomers. They live up there all by themselves. They 
look at the sky. They see things. You always get the feeling they know a lot 
more than they're telling -- like, uh, doctors, or ... like priests, I guess. 
Oh, I said that, didn't I? Well, that's what they're like. 

The path leads through the woods -- biggest live oaks you ever saw -- leads
through the woods over to the old hotel. So I said, "Hey, how about a beer
before we start down, huh?" 

MANUCCI: A beer, that's for me. 

GRANT: Can you get hard liquor up here, Ross? 

ROSS: No, I don't think so. Anyway I wouldn't want a drink, not with all 
that mountain road ahead of me. 

MANUCCI: No, sir, don't you take no drink, Ross. I don't wanna ride that road 
with nobody's had a drink a liquor. Maybe you shouldn't have a beer even. 

ROSS: Oh, no, wait a minute, a beer won't hurt me. 

GRANT: Hey, what's this fence for? 

ROSS: Huh? I never noticed that before. 

GRANT: That's quite a fence. You'd have a hard time gettin' over that. 

MANUCCI: What would you want to get over it for? 

GRANT: I don't know. What do you suppose is on the other side, they got this 
heavy fence? 

ROSS: I don't see anything. 'Cept that little house out there on stilts. 

MANUCCI: Yeah. Funny lookin' place. 

GRANT: Fence goes right around it. 

MANUCCI: Ain't there a gate? 

ROSS: Aw, c'mon, let's get a beer. 

GRANT: Nah, I wanna look at this, Ross. 

MANUCCI: Probably they got something valuable in there. 

ROSS: Sure, scientific instruments or something, this place is all full of
that stuff. 

MANUCCI: Hey, look! A sign. 

ROSS: Huh? 

GRANT: Where? 

MANUCCI: Here. 

ROSS: Aw, c'mon. 

GRANT: Ah, wait, what's it say? 

MANUCCI: "The public is forbidden to pass beyond this fence under severe 
penalty." 

(MUSIC ... AN ACCENT)

GRANT: That all? 

MANUCCI: Yeah. 

GRANT: What you suppose they got in that place? 

ROSS: I don't know. I don't care. 

GRANT: Hey, there's a door up at the end of that trestle. Maybe we could get
back and get in through that other shed where that trestle starts, huh? 

ROSS: What do you want to go in there for? Aw, c'mon, we gotta get going-- 

GRANT: I'm just curious. You know what I mean. Place might come in handy. 

MANUCCI: Oh, yeah. 

GRANT: See? Especially if they keep everybody out like this. 

MANUCCI: Well, the thing must be full of stuff, Hugh, like Ross said -- 
scientific stuff. 

GRANT: Yeah, might be, might not be. Hey, here comes that fellow that made the 
spiel up there. 

MANUCCI: Well, ask him. He'd know. 

ROSS: He won't tell you. 

GRANT: Well, we'll find out. Hey, fella! 

ASTRONOMER: (COMING UP) How are you? 

GRANT: Hey! 

ASTRONOMER: Were you talking to me? 

GRANT: Yeah. What's in that funny looking building? 

ASTRONOMER: Over there? ... Nothing. 

GRANT: Yeah? 

MANUCCI: What's the idea of the fence, then? 

ASTRONOMER: We don't want people to go in there. 

GRANT: I'd sure like to see what's in it. 

ASTRONOMER: I said there's ... nothing in there. 

GRANT: You sure, mister? 

ASTRONOMER: Yes, I'm absolutely sure. 

ROSS: Well, could we get a pass to go in there, maybe? 

ASTRONOMER: No. You saw the sign, didn't you? 

GRANT: Yeah, it said something about, uh, "...penalty of the law." 

ASTRONOMER: You didn't read it very carefully. 

MANUCCI: He didn't read it. I did. 

ASTRONOMER: Read it again. 

MANUCCI: Wait. (OFF) "The public is forbidden to pass beyond this fence under 
severe penalty." 

(MUSIC ... AN ACCENT)

MANUCCI: See? 

ROSS: I see what he means. He didn't say anything about the law. 

GRANT: Ah.

ASTRONOMER: That's right. 

GRANT: Well, then?

ASTRONOMER: There are ... other penalties. 

GRANT: Ah, tough guy, huh? 

ASTRONOMER: No, not at all. 

MANUCCI: Well, what does it mean then? 

ASTRONOMER: I'll give you a little friendly advice. I wouldn't try to find
out if I were you. 

GRANT: Oh? Is that so? 

ASTRONOMER: Yes. 

ROSS: Do you really know what's in there, mister? 

ASTRONOMER: Yes. 

MANUCCI: What? 

ASTRONOMER: Nothing. 

GRANT: Okay, lads, let's go get that beer! 

(MUSIC UP AND UNDER)

ROSS: (NARRATES) Well, of course, you know what was up. You're way ahead of 
me. My Cleveland pals weren't in California just for a vacation. There was a 
bank I'd had my eye on for a while out in Pacific Palisades. It wasn't the 
first bank that Manucci and Hugh Grant and I had worked a deal on. I didn't go 
much for this place up on Mount Wilson with "nothing" in it and a fence around 
it. Aldo and Hugh -- well, after all, could you find a better place to stash 
away some dough? Nobody could get in, they said, and if we could-- ... Well, 
so, I bought the idea, finally. And, to make a long story short, we took, I 
think it was fifty-three thousand dollars out of the bank. Fifty-three, fifty-
four? Ah, what's the difference? It's all gone now. 

(MUSIC ... AN ACCENT)

It's a long drive from Pacific Palisades over Sunset Boulevard, then up 
Beverly Glen to the Valley, through Van Nuys to Sunland, down past the 
Sanitarium on Foothill Boulevard to where you turn off on the Angeles Crest 
Highway. A long drive, especially at one o'clock in the morning. That was when 
we pulled out of Pacific Palisades. It was summer. It-- Ah, after you turn on 
the mountain road, you're not allowed to smoke. You see, a fire warden might 
come along and those guys can tell somebody smoking in a car a half mile off. 
They throw you in the can for it. Forest fires. 

No, we didn't want anybody stopping us. It was risky enough anyway because
practically nobody ever drives up there late at night-- Or early in the
morning, I mean. 

Well, we didn't meet anybody. All three of us were jittery with no
cigarettes, that road. It's tough enough in daylight-- boy, in the dark! 

(MUSIC ... AN ACCENT)

It was half past four when we got to the top. The hotel was dark. Cabins were
dark. But the sky! It was just like solid with stars. Why, you could pretty 
near reach up and touch it. 

I remembered the old guy in the hundred inch dome -- "Nothing between us and
the stars..." And down below -- well, if you've ever been up there at night, 
you know what I mean -- just like looking down at stars. The lights of 
seventeen, eighteen, nineteen towns: Pasadena, Los Angeles, Hollywood, Van 
Nuys, San Fernando, Culver City, Santa Monica... Hmmm, makes my hair stand on 
end when I think of it. And I haven't seen it for -- well, never mind how 
many years.

(MUSIC ... AN ACCENT, THEN UNDER)

Well.

We stumbled through the pitch dark. 

We got off the path three times, nearly fell downhill. And brother, that'd be 
a fall. 

We still couldn't risk a cigarette. 

It - was - dark. 

Hugh Grant was in front. Then me. Then Aldo. We each had briefcases. Hugh had
a pair of those big spring wire cutters that'll go through a steel cable. All 
of a sudden he bumped into the fence-- 

GRANT: Ouch!

ROSS: What's the matter? 

GRANT: The fence! 

MANUCCI: Hey, where are you? (BUMPS INTO ROSS) Uhhh!

ROSS: Stand still, will you? 

MANUCCI: It's dark. 

GRANT: Shut up. Listen for a minute. Hear anything? 

MANUCCI: No. 

ROSS: No. 

GRANT: See anything? 

ROSS: No. 

MANUCCI: Look! 

GRANT: What? 

MANUCCI: The dome over there. 

GRANT: You see somebody? 

MANUCCI: No. (CHUCKLES) Them two big windows up there - with that big round 
dome. Looks like somebody watching us. 

ROSS: Yeah. Sure does. 

GRANT: Aww, cut it out. I'm gonna try the fence with the cutters. 

MANUCCI: Want the flashlight? 

GRANT: You chump! NO! 

ROSS: I wish we-- 

GRANT: What? 

ROSS: Eh, forget it. I just don't like that place. 

GRANT: Get out of the way. 

MANUCCI: Want some help, Hugh? 

GRANT: Just keep outta the way! 

SOUND: (THE WIRE GOES "TWANG!")

GRANT: Wait. Hear anything? 

ROSS: Well, that wire made enough noise to-- 

GRANT: All right, all right. I'll try another strand. 

SOUND: (THE CUTTERS AGAIN. NOT SO LOUD THIS TIME)

GRANT: Ah, that's better ... Now, see if you can slide under there, one of ya. 

MANUCCI: Me. (STRUGGLES) Nah, can't make it yet. 

GRANT: Well, I'll try another. Look out for your arm, there. 

SOUND: (THE WIRE GOES "TWANG!")

GRANT: Now try. 

MANUCCI: Ah, wait'll I take off my coat. ... All right, now, let's see. 
(STRUGGLES)

GRANT: How about it? 

ROSS: He's through. 

GRANT: All right, go ahead. 

ROSS: Me? 

GRANT: You! 

ROSS: Well, I -- cut another strand, Hugh.

SOUND: (THE WIRE GOES "TWANG!")

GRANT: Make it now? 

ROSS: I guess so. (STRUGGLES) Yeah. Where are you, Aldo? 

MANUCCI: Right here! C'mon, Hugh. Hey, slide the briefcases through first. 

GRANT: Comin' up. Got 'em?

MANUCCI: Got 'em. 

GRANT: Here I come. All set? 

MANUCCI: All set. 

ROSS: I'm all set. ... (NARRATES) I'm as all set as I ever will be, I figure. 
I don't like any part of this place. I don't like the dark. I don't like the 
stars up above us. I don't like the lights down below. I don't like the 
silence. I don't like climbin' around the top of a mountain with nothin' under 
me but thin air for a mile or more. All I can hear is Hugh and Aldo in front 
of me, crackin' through the weeds, cursin' when one of 'em whacks a shin 
against a sharp rock. 

MANUCCI: Eh! 

GRANT: Easy. 

ROSS: (NARRATES) All I can see is two black shapes in front of me. The 
blacker shape, that's the building, the little house with nothing in it. Aldo 
and Hugh are panting. 

GRANT: Come on, Aldo!

ROSS: (NARRATES) Sixty-eight hundred feet, you know. Your breath is pretty 
short. It's tough goin', especially when you're draggin' a briefcase full of 
money, too. You're scared and sweatin' and tired. Then, all of a sudden, we're 
under the building, alongside one of the struts that hold up the little 
trestle. 

GRANT: Boost me up, Aldo.

ROSS: (NARRATES) Aldo boosts him up. (GRANT STRUGGLES) Hugh's a little guy, 
he's spry. Lot spryer than I am, up there a mile in the air, and I guess he's 
not as scared as I am. So I look up and he's sprawling on the trestle with 
nine million stars behind him - reaching down to me.

GRANT: Grab my hand, Ross. 

ROSS: (NARRATES) I scrambled up. I'll never know how I made it, either. There 
we are - and in a second - Aldo's up there with us. 

GRANT: (BREATHES HARD) Now keep quiet a minute and rest. I'm knocked out. 

MANUCCI: Yeah. (PANTING) Do ya hear anything, Hugh? 

GRANT: Just the wind. Ross? 

ROSS: I - uh - No, I thought I heard som'n. Guess it's just the wind. 

GRANT: Yeah, listen. (PAUSE) It's the wind. Well?

ROSS: (NARRATES) So we stood up. So Hugh walked the rest of the way down the 
little trestle. We followed him, stumbling over the planks, and there was the 
door. 

SOUND: (METAL BAR RATTLES)

ROSS: (NARRATES) We rattled the bar on it. It was padlocked. So Hugh took the 
big cutters and he wrenched away at the bar. 

SOUND: (SOUND OF WRENCHING WITH CUTTERS)

ROSS: (NARRATES) We shivered there in the cold, waiting to see if anybody 
heard us. ... There wasn't a sound. ... So Hugh tried again. 

SOUND: (SOUND OF WRENCHING WITH CUTTERS)

ROSS: (NARRATES) And the bar fell off.

SOUND: (METAL BAR CRASHES)

ROSS: (NARRATES) We kept still for another minute. And then-- 

GRANT: Open the door. 

SOUND: (THE DOOR RASPS OPEN AND CLANGS BACK AGAINST THE WALL)

GRANT: Hey, where's the flashlight?

MANUCCI: Wait! 

GRANT: Ah, nobody can see us. Put your fingers over it and turn it in - turn 
it in there.

MANUCCI: Okay. I don't see anything. 

ROSS: Well, the guy said there was nothin' in there. 

GRANT: I can't see a thing. Open up the light a little more. 

MANUCCI: I got it open. It's all black in there.

GRANT: There's something the matter with the light.

MANUCCI: No, there ain't. Look! 

GRANT: Turn that light off me! 

MANUCCI: Well-- Look now when I shine it inside. 

ROSS: Nothin'! 

GRANT: Well, there's gotta be something in there. 

ROSS: "Nothing," the man said. 

MANUCCI: Can't even see the floor. 

GRANT: Well, I'll find out if there's anything in there. 

MANUCCI: No, don't go in. Can't tell what's liable to be-- 

GRANT: Well, look out. I'll toss a briefcase in. 

ROSS: No, no! Throw the wire cutters in. 

GRANT: Where are they? 

MANUCCI: Here. 

SOUND: (FUMBLES AND DROPS WIRE CUTTERS) 

GRANT: For the love of Mike! Look out, will ya? Keep still! You'll wake up the 
dead. (PAUSE) Well, nobody heard us, I guess. We're shot with luck tonight, no 
kiddin'. Aw, gimme them cutters. 

MANUCCI: Yeah. Here. 

GRANT: Shine the light in there. Sure can't see anything, can ya? 

MANUCCI: Throw 'em in. 

GRANT: Get out of the doorway. Keep the light in there. 

MANUCCI: Go ahead. Throw 'em against the far wall. 

GRANT: All right. Look out! 

SOUND: (HE TOSSES THE HEAVY CUTTERS INSIDE. THERE IS NO SOUND AT ALL. PAUSE.)

MANUCCI: Where'd they go? 

GRANT: Tossed 'em hard enough to bounce-- Move the light around, I can't see a
thing. 

MANUCCI: I can't either. There oughta be-- The light just kinda seems to st-- 

GRANT: Aw, cut it out. There's prob'ly some kind of stuff on the floor - 
powdered. Maybe they fell into it. Here, stand to one side, Ross. 

ROSS: What're you gonna do? 

GRANT: Well, I'm goin' in to look around. You got a gun, Aldo? 

MANUCCI: Just this little thirty-two. 

GRANT: All right, c'mon. Ross, you stay here and watch. And listen. 

ROSS: I wouldn't go in there, Hugh. 

GRANT: Nobody asked you to. I'm going. C'mon, Aldo. 

MANUCCI: Listen, Hugh-- 

GRANT: You got the screamin' meemies, too? Now, c'mon with that gun, there's
nothing in there. 

ROSS: Look, Hugh, c'mon, let's get out of here. 

GRANT: Aw, shut up! Here. Might as well take the dough, too. We can stick it 
in there. Go ahead, Aldo, with the light. 

MANUCCI: You go first. 

GRANT: All right. Now stand there and keep your ears-- (HE IS CUT OFF SHARPLY)

MANUCCI: (AFTER A SLIGHT PAUSE) Hey, Hugh, where are ya? Can't see him. 

ROSS: Listen, Aldo, don't go in there. 

MANUCCI: I got to. Hey, Hugh! Hugh? Where are ya? 

ROSS: Listen, Aldo-- 

MANUCCI: Keep your eyes and ears open, now. We'll be right back. Hey, Hugh? 
You all right? I'm comin' in, Hugh! Hugh? 

ROSS: Aldo! 

MANUCCI: What's in there? Hey, Hugh! Okay, Ross, something's the matter with 
him. Here I come! Hugh! I'm gonna-- (HE IS CUT OFF SHARPLY)

ROSS: Hugh! Hey, Hugh! Aldo! Hey, what's in there, you two? Hugh! 

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS) 

MUSIC: (BRIEFLY IN AND OUT)

ASTRONOMER: I can see you. (THERE IS A LITTLE MOVEMENT FROM ROSS) You can 
stand up now. (NO ANSWER) They won't come out, I assure you. 

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS, METAL DOOR CLOSES) 

ASTRONOMER: Come on, son, stand up. 

ROSS: I've got a gun. 

ASTRONOMER: No, you haven't. Stand up. 

ROSS: When my friends come out--

ASTRONOMER: They're not coming out, my friend. Stand up. You wouldn't believe 
me when I told you.

ROSS: What's in there? (NO ANSWER) What's in there, I said?! 

ASTRONOMER: I told you there's ... nothing behind that door. 

ROSS: My friends went in there! 

ASTRONOMER: They're not there now. There's nothing in there. Do you
understand me? There's ... NOTHING in there. 

ROSS: (MENACING) Listen-- 

ASTRONOMER: No, you listen! I-- Though, I suppose, it would do no good to tell
you.

ROSS: Tell me what? 

ASTRONOMER: I'd better show you. 

ROSS: Show me what? 

ASTRONOMER: Come with me. 

ROSS: No. 

ASTRONOMER: Come with me. 

ROSS: I won't! You've got to--

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS) 

MUSIC: (IN AND UNDER)

ROSS: Wait! Wait for me! 

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS ... CONTINUES IN BG) 

ROSS: (NARRATES) Across the little trestle, away from the door he closed on my 
friends, through another door ...

SOUND: (DOOR OPENS)

ROSS: (NARRATES) ... into a long shed in the dark. And I was glad I couldn't 
see the stars. Out another door at the end of the shed.

SOUND: (DOOR OPENS)

ROSS: Down a path past the coelostat reaching up into the sky, shining in the 
starlight, looking like one of those visitors from Mars you heard about on the 
radio. Across the little wooden bridge ... 

SOUND: (HOLLOW FOOTSTEPS ... CONTINUES IN BG) 

ROSS: (NARRATES) ... with the two eyes of the hundred inch dome staring down 
at me and a cold wind coming up the other side of the mountain. ... Up the 
ramp ... into the dome itself ... and up the iron stairs ... 

ASTRONOMER: (OFF) Follow me. 

ROSS: (NARRATES) A little yellow light at the head of the stairs and then out 
on the catwalk in the dark with the floor forty feet below us. Up another 
ladder. My legs are getting tired. Up ... 

ASTRONOMER: Follow me. 

ROSS: (NARRATES) Up another dizzy ladder. And another. And across another 
spidery walk. 

ASTRONOMER: Here. Sit in this seat. 

(MUSIC OUT)

ROSS: (NARRATES) I can't speak. My throat is dry. My legs are trembling. I'm 
icy cold in that great dome, how far above the floor, I can't tell ya-- 

ASTRONOMER: Sit still, you won't fall. 

ROSS: Why did--? 

ASTRONOMER: Sit still, I said. You'll have to be shown. Wait. 

SOUND: (DOME MOTOR HUMS) 

ASTRONOMER: Magnetic declination. 

SOUND: (DOME MOTOR HUMS) 

ASTRONOMER: You can look now. 

ROSS: Look? At what? 

ASTRONOMER: Look through the telescope. 

ROSS: No! 

ASTRONOMER: Look, son. (PAUSE) What do you see? 

ROSS: Stars, millions of stars.

ASTRONOMER: Wait. 

SOUND: (DOME MOTOR HUMS) 

ASTRONOMER: Look again. (PAUSE) What do you see? 

ROSS: (AFTER A PAUSE) Nothing. (PAUSE) Nothing! 

ASTRONOMER: Watch. 

SOUND: (DOME MOTOR HUMS) 

ASTRONOMER: Now? 

ROSS: (CALMLY) Stars again. Millions. No, a black cloud. 

ASTRONOMER: Now? 

ROSS: (WHISPERS) Nothing. 

ASTRONOMER: That nothing you see ... is a million light-years away. 

ROSS: What is it? 

ASTRONOMER: There's nothing there to see. My friend, there are scores of 
places in this universe where ... there's nothing. Far places. Near places. Do 
you understand what I mean? 

ROSS: Is - Is that what you meant when you said-- 

ASTRONOMER: When I said, there's nothing behind that door? Yes. 

ROSS: Well, where--? Where--? 

ASTRONOMER: Your friends? Your misguided friends? I don't know. Perhaps-- Take 
your eye from the telescope. Wait. 

SOUND: (DOME MOTOR HUMS) 

ASTRONOMER: Look now, if you dare. 

ROSS: Well, what--? 

ASTRONOMER: Look! 

(MUSIC ... SCREECHING ACCENT)

ROSS: (NARRATES) Yes. 

You guess what I saw. 

You guess what I saw, clawing through black clouds of nothing. 

You guess what eyes I saw. 

I saw NOTHING. 

(MUSIC IN AND UNDER)

ROSS: (NARRATES) Yes, the little house is still there on Mount Wilson. 

You can go look at it if you want to, but don't go too close. 

Maybe somebody'll tell you it's just a place where they store equipment. 

Maybe. 

Why do they keep the door locked then? 

Well... 

Just one other thing: 

Don't you go around opening doors you don't know anything about. 

There might be NOTHING behind one of them.

(MUSIC ... THEME .. FADE FOR)
ANNOUNCER: You have just heard "Quiet, Please!" which is written and directed
by Wyllis Cooper. The man who talked to you is Ernest Chappell. 

(MUSIC OUT)

CHAPPELL: And the man who played Aldo Manucci is Martin Lawrence, Pat O'Malley
was Hugh Grant, and James Van Dyk, the Astronomer. The music was composed
and played by Gene Perrazzo. And now for a word about "Quiet, Please!" for 
next week, here is our writer-producer Wyllis Cooper. Bill?

COOPER: I've written what I think is an exciting and unusual love story for 
next week, Chappy. We will welcome, as our guest, the charming star of stage 
and radio, Claudia Morgan. 

(MUSIC ... THEME .. UNDER)

CHAPPELL: "Quiet, Please!" for next week is entitled, "I've Been Looking for
You." Until next week, then ... quietly yours, Ernest Chappell. 

ANNOUNCER: This is the Mutual Broadcasting System. 

(MUSIC OUT)

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