The Vampire's Desire

ANNOUNCER: The Mummers in "The Little Theater of The Air."

SOUND: (DOG HOWLS TWICE)

ANNOUNCER: Now, the Hermit is ready to help you spend an entertaining half 
hour.

SOUND: (WIND BLOWS ... DOGS HOWL)

HERMIT: (CACKLING LAUGHTER) Ghoooossst stories. Weirrrrrd stories. And murders 
too! (CACKLES) The Hermit knows of them all. Turn out your lights. Turn them 
out! Ahhhh. Have you heard the story ... "The Vampire's Desire" -- hm? Then 
listen while the Hermit tells you the story. (CACKLES)

SOUND: (WIND AND HOWLING DOGS FADE ... FOLLOWED BY A SUDDEN HUGE CLAP OF 
THUNDER ... RAIN AND OTHER STORM NOISES IN BG)

JOHN: Forbidding-looking place, Mr. Wynton.

WYNTON: It is at that. We can't go any farther in this downpour.

JOHN: We shall most likely have to stay in this doorway then. The house looks 
untenanted.

WYNTON: Does at that. However, there may be someone in.

SOUND: (KNOCKS AT DOOR ... LONG PAUSE FOR MORE THUNDER AND RAIN)

JOHN: There's no one living in this tomb of a place, Mr. Wynton.

WYNTON: I think you're right, John. Wonder where we are.

JOHN: I haven't had the slightest idea where we are since the beginning of the 
storm when we lost our way.

WYNTON: Mm. I think you're right about the place being untenanted. Try the 
door. Maybe we can break in. Anything to get out of this storm. Try the door.

JOHN: Er, yes, sir. Oh! It's opening!

WYNTON: Well, good.

OLD WOMAN: Well?!

WYNTON: Good evening. We've lost our way. Been caught in this storm. We're 
drenched to the skin.

OLD WOMAN: More fools you for being out on a night like this!

JOHN: (ASIDE, IRONIC) A very agreeable sort.

WYNTON: May we come in and get dried out?

OLD WOMAN: You're not welcome!

WYNTON: Well, surely you're not going to turn us away on a night like this?

OLD WOMAN: I don't care what kind of a night it is! You're not welcome!

WYNTON: Well, all right, may we come in whether we're welcome or not?

OLD WOMAN: No! Good night!

JOHN: She's slamming the door in your face-- 

SOUND: (DOOR CLOSES BUT DOES NOT SHUT ENTIRELY)

JOHN: Uhh!

WYNTON: (AFTER A PAUSE, IRONIC) Kindly soul!

JOHN: When the old woman tried to slam the door, I stuck my foot in the way 
and she hasn't tried to close it any more.

WYNTON: Well, good. Let's take a chance on going in then, whether we're 
welcome or not.

JOHN: Right, sir.

SOUND: (A LONG CLAP OF THUNDER ... AS THE DOOR SHUTS, THE THUNDER AND OTHER 
STORM NOISES DIMINISH CONSIDERABLY)

JOHN: Now which way, Mr. Wynton?

WYNTON: Eh, who can tell in this pitch darkness?

OLD WOMAN: (EERIE, MAD CACKLING LAUGHTER BEGINS AND CONTINUES IN BG)

WYNTON: Listen.

JOHN: The old woman.

WYNTON: Yes.

JOHN: Mr. Wynton... 

OLD WOMAN: (LAUGHTER STOPS ABRUPTLY)

JOHN: ... we're in the house of a madwoman.

WYNTON: It isn't a very pleasant sound, is it?

JOHN: Mmph, doesn't seem to be a light in the whole place. What shall we do?

WYNTON: We'll go to the right, feel along the wall for a light switch or a 
door.

JOHN: All right. 

WYNTON: Come along, then. Follow me.

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS AND TAPPING)

WYNTON: Ah. Here's a door.

SOUND: (DOOR OPENS)

WYNTON: Come along, John. Stay close by me.

JOHN: Yes, sir.

SOUND: (A FEW MORE FOOTSTEPS AS THE OLD WOMAN'S LAUGHTER RETURNS BRIEFLY)

JOHN: Oh, good Lord, sir. Is she going to keep that up all night?

WYNTON: Well, if she is, I wish she'd tell what the joke is so we can laugh 
with her. Find the light switch?

JOHN: Er, no. There doesn't seem to be one.

WYNTON: All right, then. We'll continue in the dark. You go to the left, I'll 
go to the right. Maybe we can find something to sit on.

JOHN: Er, yes, sir.

SOUND: (MORE FOOTSTEPS AND TAPPING)

JOHN: (AFTER A PAUSE) Ah!

WYNTON: (OFF) Hm?

JOHN: What's this? I found something.

WYNTON: (OFF) Well, what is it?

JOHN: Well, it might be a bookcase built into the wall.

WYNTON: (OFF) All right, there may be at least something in it that we can sit 
on -- even books'll be better than the cold floor.

JOHN: Yes, sir ... although I can't feel anything yet.

WYNTON: (OFF) Keep talking, John, so I can find my way over to you.

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS)

JOHN: Yes, sir. Why don't you strike a match?

WYNTON: (COMING CLOSER) Fine chance either of us have of doing that. They'll 
be soaking wet. Where are you?

JOHN: Right here, sir. You're almost up to me.

WYNTON: Ah. 

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS OUT)

WYNTON: Now where's the bookcase?

JOHN: Right here. Let me have your hand.

WYNTON: Here. 

SOUND: (HANDS ON THE WOODEN BOOKCASE)

WYNTON: Ah, yes. Now, let's feel all through it. There may be something of use 
in it, you never can tell.

SOUND: (SLIGHT NOISE, OFF)

WYNTON: What was that?

JOHN: Sounds like someone at the door.

SOUND: (ODD SCRAPING SOUND, NEAR)

WYNTON: What are you doing?

JOHN: Uh, trying to light a match.

WYNTON: Any luck?

JOHN: No, sir, just like you said. They're sopping wet.

WYNTON: Quiet now. Let's listen. (PAUSE) Huh, we must have been imagining 
things.

JOHN: I've been imagining things ever since we first heard that old woman 
laugh like that. It fairly makes my hair stand on end.

SOUND: (SLIGHT NOISE, OFF)

JOHN: (WHISPERS) There it is again, sir. A rustling near the door.

WYNTON: (CALLS OUT) Who IS that?! Who's there?!

OLD MAN: (OMINOUS LOW VOICE, FROM A DISTANCE) Stay away from that bookcase. 
Stay away.

WYNTON: Well, who is it? Who are you?

OLD MAN: Stay away from that bookcase.

WYNTON: We wouldn't be near the blessed bookcase if you'd be gracious enough 
to conduct us to a room with some furniture in it so that we might rest and 
get dry.

OLD MAN: (FADING AWAY) Stay away from the bookcase.

JOHN: He's leaving, sir.

WYNTON: Well, this is a fine how-do-you-do, isn't it?

JOHN: Oh, I've had about enough, sir. I'd sooner we were on our way.

WYNTON: Oh, nonsense. However, we'll leave the bookcase alone if that's what 
we're asked to do.

OLD MAN: (CHUCKLES OMINOUSLY, FROM OFF)

JOHN: He's still hereabouts.

WYNTON: Yes, I heard him. (CALLS OUT) Say, are you playing some game with us?! 
If so, we're not in the mood for it!

JOHN: (AFTER A PAUSE) No answer.

WYNTON: No.

OLD WOMAN: (MAD CACKLING LAUGH, FROM OFF)

JOHN: Oh, there SHE is again.

WYNTON: Yes. That's enough, that's enough.

JOHN: What are you going to do, sir?

WYNTON: If this is some fool game they're playing with us, I'm going to find 
about it and put a stop to it. There's a man and woman living in this house, 
there must be some furniture in at least one of the rooms.

JOHN: And some heat, sir. I'm chilled to the bone.

WYNTON: Yes, some heat. If there isn't, then there's something going on here 
that we should investigate and put a stop to. Come along, John.

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS IN BG)

JOHN: All right, sir, if you say so. Where to first?

WYNTON: We'll start right where we are. Search the whole house. From this 
floor up to the roof, if necessary ... (FADES OUT)

(SOUND: HOWLING WIND OF STORM ... FOR A TRANSITION ... THEN OUT ... THEN 
FOOTSTEPS)

JOHN: Look, Mr. Wynton, look.

WYNTON: Where?

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS STOP)

JOHN: Down to the end of this hall. There's the old man who was talking to us 
in the room downstairs, telling us to keep away from the bookcase.

WYNTON: I think you're right. Carrying a shaded lantern.

JOHN: Yes, sir. 

WYNTON: John. We'll follow him.

JOHN: Yes. 

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS RESUME)

WYNTON: He'll lead us somewhere. We can't wander in this house all night in 
the dark.

JOHN: At any rate, he has a light.

WYNTON: I don't think he's noticed us.

JOHN: We'll have to get close to him before he turns that corner down at the 
end of the hall.

WYNTON: Yes.

JOHN: (AFTER A PAUSE) He's almost at the corner. ... There. He turned.

WYNTON: Hurry. He might duck into some room close by and we'll lose him.

SOUND: (HURRIED FOOTSTEPS ... THEN OUT)

WYNTON: Easy now -- while I peek around the corner.

JOHN: You see him, sir?

WYNTON: Yes, going into the first room on the left.

JOHN: (COUGHS)

WYNTON: Quiet.

JOHN: The air is stale and musty here.

WYNTON: Yes, never mind about that just now.

JOHN: (HOARSELY) Makes me gasp for breath. (COUGHS)

WYNTON: Here's the room he went into. Quiet now while I have a look.

JOHN: (BREATHES HEAVILY) Is he in there, sir?

WYNTON: Strange. I'm sure he went in there.

JOHN: He might be hiding behind the door waiting to pounce on us. (COUGHS)

WYNTON: (AMUSED) Old man like that couldn't do much pouncing.

JOHN: He might be armed. (COUGHS)

WYNTON: We'll take that chance. The - (COUGHS) - air IS stale and musty here, 
isn't it?

JOHN: I can hardly - get my breath.

WYNTON: Yes. The foul-scented air is coming from that room the old man went 
into. Well, if he can stand it, we can. (COUGHS)

JOHN: All right, sir. But be careful.

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS INTO THE ROOM ... MUCH GASPING, COUGHING AND HEAVY BREATHING 
THROUGHOUT ... WHICH WORSENS AS THE SCENE UNFOLDS)

WYNTON: He's not in here. If he is, he's turned out the lantern. (CALLS OUT, 
HOARSELY) Hello?! Hello?! 

JOHN: There's no one in here.

SOUND: (DOOR CREAKS)

WYNTON: Eh?

SOUND: (DOOR SHUTS NOISILY)

WYNTON: The door, John. The door just slammed shut.

JOHN: Yes.

SOUND: (HURRIED FOOTSTEPS TO DOOR ... A THUMP)

JOHN: (GRUNTS IN PAIN) There's no door here! I ran right into a blank wall.

WYNTON: This is where the door was?

JOHN: Right here, yes.

WYNTON: John, we're trapped.

JOHN: Uhh.

WYNTON: There's some devilment underfoot in this house. And we're right in the 
middle of it.

JOHN: And in a room with no way out. (COUGHS) And no air. No air!

WYNTON: Now don't start whimpering. We're in it and we'll have to see what we 
can do to get out.

JOHN: But what could they want of us, sir?

WYNTON: How should I know? 

JOHN: What shall we do? Just sit and wait?

WYNTON: No, we'll start looking for a way out of this room right now. If we 
only had a light. (COUGHS) Maybe we can find some other way out of this room.

JOHN: We can try.

WYNTON: You go to your right, I'll go to the left. We'll follow the wall 
around till we meet.

JOHN: All right.

WYNTON: (MOVING OFF) Tap the wall as you go along. Listen for hollow spots.

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS ... TAPPING ... A THUMP)

JOHN: (IN PAIN) Ooh!

WYNTON: (OFF) Now what?

JOHN: I stumbled over something on the floor, sir.
 
WYNTON: (OFF) Well, what is it?

JOHN: I don't know. I shall have to feel. (STARTLED) Oh!

WYNTON: (OFF) What is it, John?

JOHN: A body, sir.

WYNTON: (OFF) Are you sure?

JOHN: Yes, sir. It's the body of a man.

WYNTON: (COMES CLOSER) Where is it?

JOHN: Oh, don't touch it, sir. Don't touch it.

WYNTON: Why not?

JOHN: I did. And a part of it crumbled to bits.

WYNTON: Good Heaven.

JOHN: Yes, sir. It crumbled under my touch.

WYNTON: Where - where is it?

JOHN: Right at my feet. I'm afraid to move another step.

WYNTON: (BENDS OVER) We'll see what this is.

JOHN: Yes.

WYNTON: (GASPS) You're right. I just touched it and part of the clothing 
crumbled away.

JOHN: Yes.

WYNTON: And, John, I - I felt bones!

JOHN: Oh, sir! That's what's goin' to happen to us -- if we don't get out of 
this place. I just know it is.

WYNTON: This fellow must've been dead for years. The clothing just crumbled 
away in my fingers.

JOHN: Yes.

WYNTON: John, we must get out of this place as quickly as possible. We're in 
great danger, I am sure of it. In danger of our lives. We've got to find a way 
out of this room before we suffocate.

JOHN: Why don't we try to find the place where the door was, sir?

WYNTON: Yes. Back to the door, John. We haven't time to look for any other 
exit. We'll have to find out how to open the door we came in.

SOUND: (HALTING FOOTSTEPS, CONTINUES IN BG ... THE GASPING AND HEAVY BREATHING 
WORSEN)

JOHN: It's over this way, sir. Right along this wall.

OLD WOMAN: (EERIE, MAD CACKLING LAUGHTER ... BRIEFLY)

JOHN: Who's that? There's the hideous cackle of the old woman again!

WYNTON: Never mind about that cackle. We've only a few minutes to find a way 
out of here. When that door closed, it hermetically sealed this room. If we 
don't get out, we'll suffocate.

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS STOP ... FEELING AND TAPPING ALONG THE WALL ... AND THEN THE 
FLOOR)

JOHN: What shall I do, sir?

WYNTON: Feel along the floor while I search along the walls here. Feel for any 
loose boards or any part of the floor that might move.

JOHN: Yes, sir.

WYNTON: (AFTER A TENSE PAUSE, COUGHS) Have you found anything yet?

JOHN: (WEAKLY) No, sir. 

WYNTON: Keep working! For heaven's sake, keep working!

JOHN: (WEARILY) I - can't do any more, sir. I'm through.

WYNTON: (PANICS) Keep searching, John! Keep searching! There MUST be a secret 
spring somewhere in here that'll open this door. Did you find anything yet, 
John? 

JOHN: (NO ANSWER EXCEPT A FINAL WHIMPER) 

WYNTON: John?! Answer me!

SOUND: (JOHN COLLAPSES TO THE FLOOR)

WYNTON: John! (REALIZES) He's done for. (TO HIMSELF) Don't let go, man! Keep 
on! Hang on! We're not done for yet!

SOUND: (VOICE DROWNED OUT BY WIND AND STORM ... SOON, DOGS HOWL ... AND WE ARE 
BACK WITH THE HERMIT)

HERMIT: (CACKLING LAUGHTER FADES IN) Mr. Wynton and his man John -- trapped in 
a house of mystery -- suffocating in a hermetically sealed room. Where is the 
old man with the lantern - eh? The Hermit will tell you before the night is 
done! (CACKLES)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SOUND: (WIND BLOWS ... DOGS HOWL ... IN BG)

HERMIT: (CACKLING LAUGHTER) Wynton and his man John are trapped in a 
hermetically sealed room in a house of mystery. Yes, John has lapsed into 
unconsciousness. But just as Wynton is about to drop off -- something happens. 
Listen. (CACKLES)

SOUND: (WIND AND DOGS FADE)

WYNTON: (GASPING)

SOUND: (A LOUD CLICK)

WYNTON: John?

SOUND: (MOVEABLE WALL SLIDES NOISILY OPENS)

WYNTON: John, we've made it!

SOUND: (WALL STOPS)

WYNTON: I've found the hidden spring just in time.

JOHN: (GROANS)

WYNTON: (STRUGGLES) I'll - get you out of here. (DRAGS JOHN'S BODY OUT OF 
ROOM) Here. Here. You'll be all right in no time.

SOUND: (THEIR BREATHING SLOWLY IMPROVES DURING DIALOGUE)

JOHN: (REGAINS HIS SENSES) Oh. It's you, sir.

WYNTON: Yes. Now, come on ... pull yourself together.

JOHN: Where are we?

WYNTON: I don't know. But at least we're out of that death trap.

JOHN: How did we do it, sir?

WYNTON: Just before I went under, I - I happened on that hidden spring that 
works the door.

JOHN: What about the old man with the lantern? And the cackling old woman? And 
the crumbling body of the man?

WYNTON: We're going to see about those things immediately. I'm going to get to 
the bottom of this thing. Come on.

JOHN: And - and get suffocated all over again?

WYNTON: I don't think we will. Besides, I know where the release for the door 
is now. Come along. Careful. Take an extra-long step when you enter the room. 
I think we tripped some kind of mechanism when we first entered.

JOHN: Yes, sir.

WYNTON: Old man with a lantern went into this room - and disappeared.

JOHN: But where can he have got to? If he stayed in the room, he must have 
suffocated.

WYNTON: He didn't stay in the room. I'm positive of that.

SOUND: (TWO SHARP TAPS ON WALL)

WYNTON: Keep your ears open. Listen for any hollow sounds.

SOUND: (MORE DOUBLE-TAPPING, ENDING ON TWO THAT MAKE A HOLLOW SOUND)

JOHN: Oooh. There's one, sir.

WYNTON: Yes, I heard it.

OLD MAN: (MUFFLED, ANGRY) You'll do as I tell you.

WYNTON: Listen.

OLD WOMAN: (MUFFLED, CRYING) I won't! I won't!

OLD MAN: (MUFFLED, INDISTINCT) 

WYNTON: Don't you hear someone talking?

JOHN: No, sir.

WYNTON: Put your ear to the wall. Listen.

OLD WOMAN: (MUFFLED) I can't do any more, I tell you. I can't!

OLD MAN: (MUFFLED) You'll do as I tell you or you know--

WYNTON: Do you hear it now?

JOHN: Yes, sir. Two people talking.

WYNTON: Yes. I knew that old man couldn't have vanished into thin air. There's 
another door hidden here somewhere - and we're going to find it. Feel for 
anything moveable around the wainscoting. I'll work up the sides here.

SOUND: (FEELING ALONG THE WALL ... OLD MAN AND WOMAN CONTINUE TO ARGUE 
INDISTINCTLY IN BG)

JOHN: Can you hear what they're saying?

WYNTON: No, they're too far away to catch any of the words. However, from his 
tone, I'd say he was threatening her.

SOUND: (A LOUD CLICK)

WYNTON: Ah!

JOHN: You found it, sir?

SOUND: (MOVEABLE WALL SLIDES NOISILY OPEN)

WYNTON: Yes. This little bug on the decoration here.

JOHN: Look, sir. A flight of stairs.

WYNTON: Yes, and leading down. Come on.

JOHN: Oh, haven't we had enough for one night, sir, without sticking our noses 
in any further?

WYNTON: We've gone this far and had an attempt made on our lives. We're going 
to clear up this business before we leave.

JOHN: No telling what might be down there, sir.

WYNTON: That's what I'm going to find out. Well? Coming with me or shall I go 
alone?

JOHN: Oh, no, sir, I'm coming.

SOUND: (FOOTSTEPS DOWN STAIRS ... OLD MAN AND WOMAN'S VOICES GROW LOUDER ... 
WOMAN IS CRYING THROUGHOUT ... THE VOICES OF WYNTON AND JOHN ARE HEARD THROUGH 
A FILTER UNTIL THEY ENTER THE ROOM WITH THE OLD MAN AND WOMAN)

WYNTON: (FILTER) Ah, you can hear them talking a little more clearly now.

OLD MAN: You'll do as I tell you, do you understand that?

OLD WOMAN: No. 

WYNTON: (FILTER) Close enough to make out their conversation.

OLD MAN: Now there are two more up there - with Gregory.

OLD WOMAN: Yes.

OLD MAN: (CHUCKLES OMINOUSLY)

WYNTON: (FILTER) Man we saw with the lantern. He's talking about us, John.

JOHN: (FILTER) Yes, sir. 

WYNTON: (FILTER) He thinks we're dead upstairs with that body we found.

OLD MAN: If you do not continue to obey me, that's what will happen to you!

OLD WOMAN: Oh, no. No!

OLD MAN: (CHUCKLES OMINOUSLY) Cringe. Cringe! That's what I want you to do!

WYNTON: (FILTER) Come on, John. We'll see what we can do about this.

OLD MAN: When I'm gone, you think all the money will be yours.

OLD WOMAN: (DEFIANT) I don't know what you're talking about!

OLD MAN: Oh, yes, you do. (CHUCKLES OMINOUSLY) Yes, you do!

WYNTON: (FILTER) There's a turn in the passage just ahead. I can see a light 
shining. Quietly now. We'll be able to see into the room in a moment or so.

OLD MAN: Tomorrow, you will bring me another young animal to feed upon.

OLD WOMAN: Yes, Brother Garnett.

JOHN: (FILTER) It's her brother that's talking.

WYNTON: (FILTER) Yes. Easy now, while I look around the corner. (PAUSE) What 
in Heaven's name?

JOHN: (FILTER) What do you see, sir?

WYNTON: (FILTER) Come here.

JOHN: (FILTER) Great Heavens. A coffin.

WYNTON: (FILTER) Yes, a coffin.

JOHN: (FILTER) With a huge lighted candle at each corner.

WYNTON: (FILTER) And look IN the coffin.

JOHN: (FILTER) A man. 

WYNTON: (FILTER) The one we heard talking.

OLD MAN: When you get back to your cottage each morning, you wonder where 
you've been the night before. Don't you? Eh? (CHUCKLES OMINOUSLY)

WYNTON: (FILTER) There you are, John.

JOHN: (FILTER) But his lips don't move.

WYNTON: (FILTER) No, but that's where the voice is coming from.

OLD MAN: You don't know that I have you under my power. (CHUCKLES OMINOUSLY)

JOHN: (FILTER) What shall we do, sir?

WYNTON: (FILTER) We'll dash in there and let matters take their course. Are 
you ready?

JOHN: (FILTER) Yes, sir.

WYNTON: (FILTER) Come on, then.

SOUND: (HURRIED FOOTSTEPS ... WYNTON AND JOHN DASH INTO THE ROOM)

OLD MAN: Lydia! The candles! Quick! Out with them!

WYNTON: Stop! Stop! John! Quickly! That cover over there!

SOUND: (WYNTON AND JOHN LIFT A HEAVY COFFIN LID AND CARRY IT TO COFFIN)

WYNTON: Slam it on the coffin!

SOUND: (LID SLAMMED ON COFFIN)

OLD WOMAN: (SHRIEKS, WHIMPERS, GASPS -- AS THE VAMPIRE'S SPELL OVER HER IS 
BROKEN AND SHE TRANSFORMS)

JOHN: The lady. Look at her. Look at the change that's coming over her.

LYDIA: (RECOVERING, SUDDENLY SOUNDS YOUNGER) Oh! Oh! Oh, where am I? (GASPS, 
STARTLED) A - a coffin! You two -- where am I?

WYNTON: (ASTONISHED) You should know better than us.

LYDIA: But I - But I - I don't. 

WYNTON: Are you sure?

LYDIA: Oh, yes. Yes! Oh, please believe me-- (GASPS, REALIZES) Why, I - I 
begin to understand now.

WYNTON: (SLOWLY) I think I do, too.

LYDIA: (SOBERLY) It's been this all the time. While I thought it was just a 
terrible nightmare.

WYNTON: Would you like to make yourself clear?

LYDIA: (ANXIOUS) The coffin! Tell me. Who's in it? Who's in the coffin?

WYNTON: You mean to say that you don't know?

LYDIA: Oh, no, I swear I don't.

WYNTON: Well, you called him "brother" just a few moments ago.

LYDIA: (GASPS) Brother?

WYNTON: Your own brother Garnett is in that coffin.

LYDIA: Nooo. No. How can that be? We buried my brother Garnett over eight 
years ago.

WYNTON: Ohhh, I see.

LYDIA: Yes. 

WYNTON: And you are--?

LYDIA: I'm Lydia Crampton. 

WYNTON: Miss Crampton, I would advise you to start at the beginning so that we 
might unravel this maze.

LYDIA: Oh, I-- I'll try. But-- Oh, but not here, please.

WYNTON: Yes, here. If my deductions are correct, it would be better for 
everyone concerned to get the truth -- right here and now. 

LYDIA: All right. There's very little I can tell you that I know definitely. 
Brother Garnett died about eight years ago. I - I hate to say it - but he was 
horrible. He was a devil. As soon as father died and he came into the money, 
he started making my life miserable. 

WYNTON: Why?

LYDIA: I never could find out why. Then Garnett died and was buried. And with 
him was buried the secret of father's will. I know that the estate was 
supposed to pass on to me after Garnett's death but I can't find any sign of 
the will.

WYNTON: Well, what have you done?

LYDIA: I have a small income from my mother. I've been living in a little 
cottage not far from here. And now comes the part that's like a terrible 
dream. But I'm beginning to see it now. (SLOWLY) I'm positive that I'm right 
when I say that Garnett somehow was able to exercise his will upon me, after 
death. 

WYNTON: What makes you say that?

LYDIA: What I've been thinking were horrible nightmares, I now see were actual 
occurrences. He made me come here every night to wait upon him. He told me 
that Gregory, his butler, had placed him here in this coffin - and had buried 
a dummy in his place. Then he killed Gregory.

WYNTON: The body in the room upstairs?

LYDIA: Yes. (DARKLY) When he had me under his spell, I used to pass through 
that room and laugh at the remains of Gregory -- call him lazy for always 
sleeping on the floor. To think that I would do a thing like that.

WYNTON: Go ahead, Miss Crampton.

LYDIA: He made me bring him a young animal every day or two.

WYNTON: What was that for?

LYDIA: He - fed upon them.

WYNTON: Ah, I thought so. He feeds upon the blood of animals?

LYDIA: Yes. He sucked the blood from them. And, when he had fed, he had the 
strength to get out of his coffin for a while.

JOHN: (UNNERVED, TO WYNTON) This is horrible! Stop her!

WYNTON: No, quiet, John. (TO HIMSELF) Then that's how we saw him in the hall 
upstairs. (TO LYDIA) Go ahead, Miss Crampton.

LYDIA: That is about all. He used to taunt me by the hour, telling me I'd 
never come into my inheritance.

WYNTON: I see. When we slammed the lid on the coffin, we broke his spell over 
you.

LYDIA: (REALIZES THIS IS TRUE) Yes! You MUST have done.

WYNTON: Tell me, Miss Crampton, where, in this room, are we in connection with 
the rest of the house?

LYDIA: I - don't know. It must be on the ground floor, I suppose.

WYNTON: That's what I was thinking. 

SOUND: (TAPPING ON WALL)

WYNTON: I have an idea.

JOHN: What is it, sir?

SOUND: (MORE TAPPING ON WALL, ENDING WITH HOLLOW TAPS)

WYNTON: Ah. Hear that?

JOHN: Another hollow spot.

WYNTON: Exactly. Now, watch this point right here.

JOHN: Yes, sir?

WYNTON: We'll press it and--

SOUND: (CLICK) 

WYNTON: Mm.

SOUND: (MOVEABLE WALL SLIDES NOISILY OPEN)

JOHN: It's opening!

LYDIA: Why - why, it's the bookcase in the front room.

WYNTON: Look at this in the back of the bookcase -- a small secret 
compartment.

OLD MAN: (MUFFLED, FROM UNDER COFFIN LID, INDISTINCT MUMBLING ... THEN, 
OMINOUSLY) Keep away from the bookcase!

LYDIA: (GASPS)

JOHN: The dead body is talking! Talking even with the coffin lid on.

WYNTON: All right, John. We're ready to put a stop to his talking. Here, Miss 
Crampton -- a package from the compartment in the back of the bookcase. I 
think you'll find it's your father's will.

LYDIA: Father's will?

WYNTON: Yes. Now, John, take those candles out of the candlesticks. 

JOHN: Yes, sir.

WYNTON: Hand the candles to Miss Crampton. Now, hand me one candlestick and 
use the other as a hammer.

JOHN: But what are we going to do, sir?

WYNTON: We're going to put an end to Garnett Crampton.

JOHN: But how, sir? What are we going to do with the candlesticks?

WYNTON: I'll show you. I'll use the ornamental pointed end of this candlestick 
as a spear. You use your candlestick as a hammer. We'll drive this one through 
the heart of that monster in the coffin.

LYDIA: No, no!

JOHN: But that would be murder!

WYNTON: It will not! He only lives during the night. Go on, strike!

SOUND: (JOHN STARTS HAMMERING ON THE CANDLESTICK, GRUNTING A LITTLE WITH EVERY 
BLOW ... CONTINUES IN BG)

OLD MAN: (MUFFLED) Stop it! Stop it, I say! (CONTINUES YELLING INDECIPHERABLY 
IN BG)

WYNTON: We'll release his soul so that it'll never trouble anyone on Earth 
again. 

OLD MAN: (MUFFLED) Please--! (CONTINUES IN BG)

WYNTON: Faster, John!

JOHN: I'm working as fast as I can, sir!

WYNTON: When Miss Crampton told me of its feeding on young animals--

JOHN: Sucking the blood?

WYNTON: Yes. I knew then that we had a vampire to deal with.

LYDIA: Oh, what are you doing? For heaven's sakes, what are you doing?

WYNTON: We're ridding the face of the Earth of a vampire.

SOUND: (ONE LAST HAMMER BLOW)

OLD MAN: (BLOODCURDLING SCREAM) 

LYDIA: (SHRIEKS)

WYNTON: (AFTER A BRIEF PAUSE, SIGHS) It's done. We've driven the point of this 
candlestick through the coffin and through the heart of Garnett Crampton -- 
who's long been dead but whose soul has been held in bondage by the result of 
his evil practices in life.

SOUND: (WIND BLOWS ... DOGS HOWL ... IN BG)

HERMIT: (CACKLING LAUGHTER) With a heavy candlestick used as a spear, Wynton 
and his man John put an end to the vampire's desire. Yes, released his soul so 
it could never again return to the Earth. Turn on your lights! Turn them on! 
(CACKLES) I'll be back. Pleasant dreams! (CACKLES)

(SOUND: WIND AND DOGS CONTINUE)

ANNOUNCER: All characters, places and occurrences mentioned in "The Hermit's 
Cave" are fictitious and similarity to persons, places or occurrences is 
purely accidental.

(SOUND: WIND AND DOGS CONTINUE ... THEN FADE)


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