The late 18th century.Geneva, Switzerland; Ingolstadt, Germany:Various locales throughout Europe and the Arctic.
VICTOR FRANKENSTEIN, a brilliant, young scientistROBERT WALTON, a sea captainTHE CREATURE, the subject of Victor’s grand experimentELIZABETH LAVENZA, Victor’s fiancéHENRY CLERVAL, Victor’s lifelong friendVictor’s FATHER, Alphonse Frankenstein Victor’s MOTHER, CarolineWILLIAM, Victor’s 10-year-old brotherJUSTINE, William’s nannyThe BLIND MAN, a poor cottagerAGATHA, the blind man’s daughter
Lights up on a solitary figure — a sea captain, Robert WALTON. Something that hasdeeply terrified him haunts him still:
WALTON: Captain Robert Walton, in a letter to his sister, October 30th, 1793. It was just north of theArctic Circle that I discovered him — adrift on a floe of ice alongside our ship. A wretch, neardeath. In the days that followed, he would tell me a tale strange and horrifying. His life... a twistedpath of destruction. His deeds... almost too incredible to recount.
VICTOR (off-stage:) I AM THE INNOCENT. I AM THE DAMNED.
WALTON: I alone know the heart of this man...
VICTOR (O.S.:) THE FOUNT OF DELUSION. THE FATHER OF DREAMS.
WALTON: ...for I alone am still haunted by the faces of those he loved.
Each of six other characters is illuminated as they speak. First, a distinguished patriarchand his regal wife:
FATHER: ...his adoring father, who could see in him only greatness.
MOTHER: ...the mother whose loving spirit he could not bear to lose.
Next, a boy of 10 and his young governess:
WILLIAM: The young brother who worshipped him...
JUSTINE: ...and the faithful servant who understood why.
VICTOR (O.S.:) I AM NOT A MADMAN!
An apprentice priest—an earnest young man:
HENRY: The soul who was his dearest friend in life.
WALTON: ...and the woman who — from their childhood days — had been...
A beautiful, young woman emerges:
ELIZABETH: ...his one true love.
VICTOR (O.S.:) I CAN HEAR MY NAME...
HENRY: His story is the province of nightmares.
VICTOR (O.S.:) BLACKENED BY MY CRIME...
ELIZABETH: Yet it must be told.
VICTOR (O.S.:) HAUNTING ME AND TAUNTING AS IT ECHOES THROUGH ALL TIME...
WALTON: His name... is Frankenstein.
VICTOR is revealed. The previous scene disappears as the music explodes into a darkand driving theme.
PROJECTION: 1793... 1792... 1790... (a succession of years counting backwards)
As VICTOR moves across the stage, a rapid-fire montage of projected images unspools,taking us backward through the events and places of Victor’s life, finally arriving at...
...a lavish estate at the foot of the Alps in Geneva. The music swells into a celebratoryanthem as bright sunlight bathes the pastoral setting.
TITLE SLIDE: 1769. GENEVA.
The full ENSEMBLE takes the stage to embody the NOBILITY of the province.
SONG: “A GOLDEN AGE”
NOBILITY: LIFE NO MORE IS MYSTERYTHE WORLD’S AT OUR COMMANDOUR KNOWLEDGE AND OUR INDUSTRYHAVE PLACED IT IN OUR HANDSMEN OF VISION, SPIRITS BOLD WILL OPEN EV’RY DOORTHE WORLD, A TOY... EACH DAY, A JOYAND WILL BE FOREVER MORE
VICTOR AT AGE 7 enters, running playfully. He is closely followed by his MOTHER,who clearly adores him. His FATHER joins them:
FATHER: Victor Frankenstein...
MOTHER: ...our beloved boy.
FATHER: We live in a glorious time, my son. A time when one man with knowledge can change the world.
FATHER hands VICTOR a book. The boy takes it, beaming.
NOBILITY: A GOLDEN AGE IS TRULY UPON USAN ERA OF WEALTH AND SPLENDORMASTERS OF FATE, AUGUST AND ENLIGHTENEDIS HOW WE’LL BE REMEMBEREDA GOLDEN AGE OF SCIENCE AND REASONDISCOVERY AND INSPIRATIONMARVELOUS TIME, MIRACULOUS WORLDTHE DAWN OF REVELATION
One person — Victor’s SCHOOLMASTER — steps forward to address Victor’sFATHER:
SCHOOLMASTER: Your son Victor is the most gifted student we have ever seen. His facility for thenatural sciences is unparalleled.
GUEST #1: THE BRIGHTEST CHILD WE’VE EVER SEEN
OTHER GUESTS: GIFTED BOY...
GUEST #2: MONUMENTAL THINGS AWAIT
OTHER GUESTS: FATHER’S JOY...
GUEST #3: ANOTHER NEWTON, GALILEO!
OTHER GUESTS: WONDROUS DAYS...
GUEST #4: THINK OF WHAT HE MIGHT CREATE!
OTHER GUESTS: GOLDEN AGE...
FATHER: THE FUTURE IS A BANQUET AND IT’S TIME FOR US TO DINE!
ALL: WE RAISE A GLASS... PROPOSE A TOAST...TO THE HOUSE OF FRANKENSTEIN
The mood shifts from festive to sentimental as the lights dim on all but MOTHER:
MOTHER: Victor, your father and I have blessed news. After all these years... perhaps a brother foryou. We shall call him William. The greatest miracle of all is within each of us, Victor. Life.
MOTHER removes the shawl from her shoulders and gathers it in her arms, cradling it— a baby. During next, TITLE SLIDE CHANGES: from 1777 to 1787.
NOBILITY: A GOLDEN AGE IS TRULY UPON USAN ERA OF WEALTH AND SPLENDORMASTERS OF FATE, AUGUST AND ENLIGHTENEDIS HOW WE’LL BE REMEMBERED
An OFFICIAL from the University of Ingolstadt reads the text of a letter:
UNIVERSITY OFFICIAL: We are pleased and proud to accept your son, Victor, at the University ofIngolstadt.
VICTOR, now grown, rushes on followed by HENRY CLERVAL. He is busting with thegreat news:.
VICTOR: It’s the finest school of the sciences in all of Europe!
VICTOR: Come with me, my friend! We can uncover life’s mysteries together.
HENRY: You have a true calling, Victor. But... I’m afraid it’s not one that I share.
HENRY turns away, touching a hand to a crucifix he wears.
VICTOR: Henry... I think I’ve discovered something extraordinary. I... I can’t explain it yet. But onlyat Ingolstadt will I find the tools to explore it.
HENRY: Victor... since boyhood you have been bent on conquering the world. Haven’t you learnedthat no man truly can?
VICTOR: What I’ve learned... is that there is no secret that mankind will not one day know.
HENRY: And perhaps... regret knowing.
Frustrated, HENRY walks away. MOTHER enters and crosses to VICTOR’s side.
VICTOR: Does no one see beyond what merely is... to what could be?
MOTHER: FOR THE FEW WHO CHOOSE THE ROADWHERE ALL OTHERS FEAR TO GOTHEY MUST PREPARE TO WALK THEIR PATH ALONE
VICTOR: I remember, mother.
The lights change on Victor’s MOTHER. His FATHER appears:
FATHER: Victor... come. Your mother hasn’t much time.
VICTOR: I remember, mother.
MOTHER exits. PROJECTION: cemetery. The NOBILITY gathers once again, this timefor MOTHER’s funeral.
WILLIAM approaches VICTOR, cupping something in his hands.
WILLIAM: Victor... it’s a sparrow. I found it. (as VICTOR inspects it:) Is it dead?
VICTOR: I’m afraid so, William.
WILLIAM: Do birds die of scarlet fever... like Mother?
VICTOR (bitterly:) No. Only people.
WILLIAM and the mourners recede, leaving VICTOR alone. JUSTINE enters and handsVictor’s cloak and valise to ELIZABETH.
JUSTINE: Your carriage is ready, Master Victor.
She exits, leaving VICTOR and ELIZABETH alone.
ELIZABETH: We both know your mother would have wanted you to go on to University, Victor.
VICTOR: We haven’t been apart for a day since we were five. How will I manage without you?
ELIZABETH: Quite badly, I would guess.
Her teasing cheers him. As she sings, she dresses him lovingly in the cloak, preparing himfor his journey:
ELIZABETH: NO DAY SINCE CHILDHOODHAS FOUND US APARTBUT NOW YOU MUST LEAVE USTO FOLLOW YOUR HEARTLET YOUR SPIRIT SOARAND YOUR GENIUS FIND WINGSBUT KNOW THAT IF EVER YOU FALLI WILL BE THERE THROUGH IT ALL
A flash from Victor’s memory: his MOTHER.
MOTHER: My children... it has long been clear to me that there is a special bond between you thatmay be tested — but can never be broken.
VICTOR and ELIZABETH join hands. The light dims on MOTHER.
VICTOR: EVER MY ANGELTHE LIGHT OF MY SOULWE HAVE BEEN ALWAYSTWO PARTS OF ONE WHOLEANYWHERE I GO YOU WILL ALWAYS BE NEARAND ONE DAY I’LL MAKE YOU SO PROUD
ELIZABETH: YOU’VE ALREADY MADE ME SO PROUD
MOTHER: YOU’VE ALREADY MADE ME SO PROUD
VICTOR & ELIZABETH: THERE IS A PLACE AT THE END OF THE JOURNEYWITH EVERY GOOD THING YOU HAVE KNOWNSO MANY HOPES THAT YOU BEAR FOR SO MANY
ELIZABETH: I HAVE BUT ONE HOPE OF MY OWNTHAT ONE DAY YOU’LL FIND YOUR WAY HOME
VICTOR: I will return to you one day, Elizabeth. I swear it.
ELIZABETH: I ask for no promises, Victor. We know not what the future holds for us.
VICTOR: I do.
VICTOR sweeps her into his arms and kisses her passionately. FATHER, WILLIAM,JUSTINE, HENRY and the NOBILITY gather around them.
FATHER raises his hand in the air, as if lifting a glass in toast:
FATHER: To Victor... who leaves us now for a journey of discovery, carrying with him our hopes anddreams. Greatness is within your grasp, my son!
The others join in the salute, all eyes turning proudly to VICTOR:
ALL: THIS GOLDEN AGE IS YOURS FOR THE TAKINGYOUR MAGICAL PLACE IN TIMEWE RAISE OUR HEARTS, AND HAIL WITH PRIDETO THE HOUSE OF FRANKENSTEIN!
VICTOR is now alone at the grave of his mother, still dressed in his cloak.PROJECTION: Cemetery.
VICTOR: How can someone who was the light of our world... be suddenly gone forever? Mother... Ivow to do all in my power to one day see us reunited again. I have discovered the secret of life.
He reaches into his bag and carefully removes something: The SPARROW. He releasesthe bird and it FLIES OFF! The sound of its BEATING WINGS grows THUNDEROUS.The music and lights change and the setting shifts around VICTOR to suggest hisjourney to Ingolstadt.
PROJECTION: A MAP charts his course from Switzerland to Germany.TITLE SLIDE: INGOLSTADT.
The ensemble re-appears, now embodying the voices of the PROFESSORS at theUniversity. (Overlapping:)
PROFESSOR #1: Frankenstein, we find your ideas shocking, dangerous, and an affront to all that ismoral and decent.
PROFESSOR #2: Only a fool or a heretic would dare trifle with life and death as you propose.
PROFESSOR #3: Your obsession with discredited charlatans and their dubious science is pure FOLLY.
PROFESSOR #4: The University will not stand for these outlandish and unauthorized experiments ofyours.
PROFESSOR #5: What is this MADNESS?! ...wasting your time haunting graveyards and mortuaries.
ALL: It is... MADNESS... FOLLY... INSANITY!
PROFESSOR #1: The dead have nothing to say to you.
The scene transforms into...
...a PUBLIC HANGING. A CONDEMNED MAN is led out onto a scaffold, his handsbound behind his back. Near him on the scaffold stands an EXECUTIONER. Theensemble re-appears as a MOB gathering eagerly to watch the execution. A RUMBLEOF THUNDER. A storm is growing.
CONDEMNED MAN: I CURSE THE DAY THAT I WAS BORNINTO A WORLD SO BLACK WITH HATEI’LL GLADLY LEAVE THIS LIFE OF SCORNAND SEEK MY PEACE BEFORE THE LIGHT OF HEAVEN’S GATE
I HAVE MY SINS LIKE ANY MANBUT NONE MORE DARK THAN YOURSIF IT IS I YOU CHOOSE TO DAMNINNOCENT BLOOD WILL STAIN YOUR HANDS FOREVERMORE
EXECUTIONER: For crimes against the people... the magistrate of Ingolstadt hereby sentences you...to be hanged by the neck until dead... this sixteenth day of September, Seventeen Hundred and...(trails off)
MOB: YOUR KIND HAS NO PLACE BUT THE GRAVENOT EVEN A SOUL THAT CAN BE SAVEDSOON YOU WILL KNOW ETERNAL PAIN
MOB / CONDEMNED MAN: YOUR KIND HAS NO PLACE BUT THE GRAVE
WHAT’S WRONG? WHAT’S RIGHT?NOT EVEN A SOUL THAT CAN BE SAVED
DOES MAN DECIDE?SOON YOU WILL KNOW ETERNAL PAIN
WHO DARES TO ACT AS GOD?NO MAN WOULD DARE TO ACT AS GOD!
The scene freezes. VICTOR gazes at the condemned man.
VICTOR: ANOTHER SOUL, ANOTHER LIGHTANOTHER FLAME EXTINGUISHEDONE MOMENT HERE, AND THEN IT’S GONEA HEART IS BEATING, THEN IS DONETHE DIFFERENCE BARELY IS DISTINGUISHEDTHE ANCIENT RIDDLE—WHAT THEN IS LIFE?WHAT IS ITS FLEETING ESSENCE?THE GREATEST MINDS HAVE SOUGHT THE KEYTHAT COULD UNLOCK THIS MYSTERYAND I ALONE POSSESS ITWHAT I HAVE FOUND WAS THOUGHT IMPOSSIBLEAND ONLY SPOKEN OF IN FEARBUT IF I SHOW THEM THE IMPOSSIBLE —CREATE A LIFE... THEN ALL MUST HEAR!
VICTOR / MOB / MAN: LET GOD’S WILL BE THE GAUNTLET DONEWAITS—IT CALLS TO ME
WHAT’S WRONG?WHAT’S RIGHT?
MAKE HIM PAYDOES MANDECIDE?
THE VERY FATE OF ALL MANKIND
FINISH WHAT’S BEGUNRESTS IN THIS MIND...
WHO DARES TO ACT AS GOD?
...AND IN THESE HANDSUPON THIS JUDGEMENT DAY
CONDEMNED MAN: OH MY CREATOR, CLAIM ME NOWGRANT TO ME THIS NIGHTMARE’S ENDAND IF NO MAN SHALL MOURN FOR MEI’LL TRUST IN YOUA-MEN
With the sound of a LOUD CLATTER from the gallows’ trap door, the man is hanged.
After a moment, the crowd begins to disperse. The EXECUTIONER calls out:
EXECUTIONER: Who will tend to the remains?
VICTOR scans the crowd. No one speaks up. He hesitates nervously.
EXECUTIONER: I say... who claims this body?!
Finally, VICTOR raises his hand and proclaims loudly:
VICTOR: I do!
With a GREAT FLASH OF LIGHTNING, the scene behind VICTOR vanishes, taking usto...
...his laboratory. The scathing words of one of his PROFESSORS echoes in his memory:
PROFESSOR #1 (off-stage:) Frankenstein, we find your ideas shocking, dangerous, and an affront toall that is moral and decent.
SONG: “BIRTH TO MY CREATION”
VICTOR: “MADNESS”... “FOLLY”... “INSANITY”LITTLE MINDS HAVE BELITTLED MY DREAMBUT I... COULD I... MIGHT IT BE...?THE GREATEST TRIUMPH MAN HAS EVER SEEN!WITHIN THE FLESH A FORCE RESIDESIF IT COULD ONLY BE CONTROLLEDIF SLEEPING SPARKS COULD SOMEHOW BE REVIVEDTHINK OF THE AWE-INSPIRING POWER WE WOULD HOLD
I WANT THE WORLD TO SEEWHERE BRAVE RESEARCH AND BOLD EXPERIMENT HAVE LEDELECTRICITY’S THE KEY TO RE-ANIMATE THE DEADI COULD SPARE THE WORLD THE ANGUISHOF LOVED ONES TAKEN IN THEIR PRIMETHE GLORY OF A BRAVE, NEW WORLDWILL ONE DAY SOON BE MINE
IMMORTAL SOUL... OUR INNER BEING...DOES IT ENDURE OR DOES IT PERISH WITH THE FLESH?IN MY HANDS I’LL HOLD THE ANSWERAND THE POWER OF LIFE AND DEATHMECCA OF SCIENCE — GIVE ME THE MEANSTO WALK WHERE NONE HAVE TRODI’LL DISCOVER THE SECRETS BETWEENTHE ALCHEMISTS AND GOD
A TABLE appears. Lying atop it is a gigantic body covered in a sheet. A storm growsoutside with flashes of lighting and great RUMBLES of thunder, accompanied by theghostly voices of the CHORUS.
VICTOR (VOICE-OVER:) It is nearly finished. I have fashioned him great in size to make easier thehandiwork. He will be approximately eight feet in height and comprised of only the most finely-formed limbs and organs... exceedingly perfect. And if I succeed in breathing life into this newcreation, might I not also — one day — be able to restore life to those claimed by death? Thetime... 12:40 am, November 16th. The storm is nearing its zenith. The moment is at hand.
VICTOR: PROMETHEUS DARED TO STEAL FIRE FROM GODSTO LIFT MANKIND FROM SORROWAND JUST AS THE MYTH – MY MISSION IS THIS:TO WRITE A NEW TOMORROWMY ENDLESS DAYS OF STUDY AND TOILARE FINALLY NEAR FRUITIONTHE WORLD WILL BE FOREVER CHANGEDBY HISTORY’S PHYSICIAN
LIFE EVERLASTING... REANIMATION...A FLAWLESS NEW DESIGNTHE FINEST HUMAN IN ALL CREATIONBODY, BONE AND MIND
THE STORM WILL PEAK AND THE HEAVENS PARTTO FIRE MY PREPARATIONSTHE NEEDED SHOCK TO START HIS HEARTGIVING BIRTH TO MY CREATION
The table with the body of Victor’s CREATURE disappears behind a great door leadingto Victor’s laboratory.
The CHORUS enters and, as the storm grows outside, their voices swell with it:
CHORUS: LIFE EVERLASTING... REANIMATION...A FLAWLESS NEW DESIGNTHE FINEST HUMAN IN ALL CREATIONBODY, BONE AND—
VICTOR: DARKNESS IS DONE—A NEW DAY HAS COMETHE DAWN OF A NEW REVELATIONHERE IN THIS PLACE... HERE IN THIS TIME...THE BIRTH OF MAN’S SALVATION!
A great bolt of lightning STRIKES as VICTOR exits into the laboratory. After severalagonizing moments of violent electrical storming — both outside and within the lab —an eerie silence falls. The lab goes dark.
Through the doorway into the lab, we can see pulses of light and VICTOR’s silhouette ashe labors over the body. Music sneaks in, approximating a heartbeat.
VICTOR: It’s alive.
The ensemble disperses to suggest a Greek CHORUS. We hear VICTOR’s furiouswritings in his journal in voice-over:
VICTOR (Voice-over:) One fifteen A-M. The first sign of animation.
CHORUS: DEATH IS NO MORE
VICTOR (V.O.:) Pulse — fifty-six beats per minute. Weak but steady.
CHORUS: A MAN COLLECTED FROM FRAGMENTSWHAT COULD HE THINK OR REMEMBER?
VICTOR (V.O.:) Eyes... dilated... pulse... weakening...
CHORUS: OR IS HE MERELY AN ANIMAL?
VICTOR (V.O.:) Can you hear me?! Live, damn you!
Still no movement at all from the CREATURE.
VICTOR (V.O.:) Pulse — thirty-two... barely measurable...
CHORUS: ...LIKE LIFE ITSELF (Ad lib: whispering)IT SEEMS DEATH IS NOT YET QUITE DEFEATEDITS SPECTRE LOOMS OVER THIS CREATION
VICTOR (V.O.:) The specimen exhibits only the faintest and most clinical signs of life... no cognitionwhatsoever. He’ll likely be dead within the hour.
CHORUS: MINOR SUCCESSES ARE NOT THE STUFFOF WHICH HISTORY IS MADE
VICTOR emerges from the lab, defeated.
VICTOR: WHAT COULD HAVE GONE WRONG?I MUST REVIEW EVERY STEP IN MY MIND
He crosses into the adjacent apartment. Exhausted, he picks up a letter from his desk —one of many that lie there.
VICTOR: AND YET ANOTHER RIDDLE TO UNWIND
As VICTOR reads the letter, on another part of the stage we see ELIZABETH sitting at asmall table in her bedchamber in Geneva, writing.
SONG: “DEAR VICTOR”
ELIZABETH: DEAR VICTOR... SWEET VICTORI PRAY THIS FINDS YOU WELLPLEASE KNOW THAT WE MISS YOUMUCH MORE THAN WORDS CAN TELLARE YOU CONSUMED IN STUDY?YOUR THOUGHTS A WORLD AWAY?FROM ALL OF THOSE WHO LOVE YOUAND HOPE FOR WORD EACH DAYI KNOW YOUR PASSION’S FURY...THE DREAMS YOU MUST PURSUEI ONLY ASK FOR COMPROMISEPLEASE REALIZE... MY DREAMS BEGIN WITH YOU
VICTOR: ELIZABETH IT PAINS ME SO TO HAVE TO KEEP THIS SECRET FROM YOUI’M SO ASHAMED THAT THIS IS ALL MY MANY MONTHS OF WORK HAVE COME TOHOW I LONG TO FEEL YOUR WARM EMBRACEAND KILL THIS FAILURE’S POISONED TASTE
ELIZABETH: DEAR VICTOR... PLEASE ANSWER...WITH WORDS THAT REASSURE
VICTOR: I HAVE NO WORDS TO SOOTHE HER
ELIZABETH: MY HEART CLINGS TO MEM’RIESYET LONGS FOR SOMETHING MORE
VICTOR: AND NO STRENGTH TO FIND THEM NOW
ELIZABETH: WHERE IS THE MAN WHO HELD MEAND MADE ME FEEL HIS FIRE?AND DOES YOUR SILENCE PROVE IT TRUEI’VE LOST YOU TO YOUR ONLY TRUE DESIRE?
VICTOR: ANOTHER MAN WOULD GLADLY NESTLE IN HER LOVING ARMS FOREVER
ELIZABETH: DEAR VICTOR
VICTOR: YET HERE AM I, ALONE AND LOST INSIDE A FOOLISH, FAILED ENDEAVORHAVE I GONE WHERE NO MAN SHOULD DARE GO?
ELIZABETH: WHAT ARE YOU KEEPING FROM ME?
VICTOR: EVERY DREAM I SEEK JUST BEYOND MY REACHWHAT IS MISSING, WHAT IS WRONG?
VICTOR: Letters from Elizabeth... my father... Henry... Why did I shut them out so? Was itindifference... or shame?
ELIZABETH: DEAR VICTOR, WITHOUT YOU OUR HOUSE IS NOT A HOMEDEAR VICTOR, RETURN TO USI MISS YOU SO... I NEED YOU SO
VICTOR: YOU MUST NEVER KNOW...
At that instant, a primal SCREAM is heard from within the lab. We follow VICTOR ashe races back into...
... the lab. VICTOR is shocked to find the table empty, the bloody sheet strewn across it.His eyes dart around the chamber, searching feverishly for the CREATURE.
VICTOR: WAS IT A DREAM? ...OR COULD IT BE...?(spoken:) Where...?!IS GREATNESS STILL WITHIN REACH?...HIDING IN THE SHADOWS?BUT WHY... WHY AM I SUDDENLY AFRAID...MY BLOOD RUN COLD?
Strange sounds emanate randomly from the darkness.
VICTOR: Where are you?!
VICTOR: A SOUND!... THERE!...
Suddenly, VICTOR tenses, the life draining from his face — he has seen THECREATURE.
VICTOR: WHAT HAVE I DONE? WHAT IS THIS BEAST?MY SOLE OBSESSION FOR THESE COUNTLESS DAYS
We see the giant, looming shadow of the CREATURE as he emits chilling, gutturalSOUNDS.
VICTOR: I HAD ONLY KNOWN HIMONLY SEEN HIM AS THE SCULPTOR SEES THE CLAYBUT NOW, TO SEE HIM THIS WAYWALKING TOWARD ME... REACHING FOR ME...TOO HORRID TO BEHOLD,AND YET THERE’S SOMETHING MORE...THE SMELL OF DEATH RISING FROM HIS EVERY PORELIFELESS, YET ALIVE — A THING NO HUMAN COULD ABIDEI CANNOT BEAR ITS FOUL EXISTENCE ONE MOMENT MORE!
VICTOR races out of the lab, shutting the CREATURE inside. He paces about theadjacent apartment, panicked, in shock. In the lab, the CREATURE begins POUNDINGon the door, HOWLING. VICTOR covers his ears and sinks to his knees. At thatmoment, a voice from beyond the outer door:
OFF-STAGE VOICE: Frankenstein! What in the name of God is going on in there?!
VICTOR: THIS WRETCHED CREATURE IS A WASTEMY FAILURE CANNOT BE DISGUISEDMY FAMILY’S NAME WILL BE DISGRACEDINSTEAD OF LAUDED I AM SURE TO BE DESPISED
UNIVERSITY OFFICIAL (over previous:) This laboratory is not your private domain! I will notify theauthorities! Unbar this door immediately! Frankenstein!!
With the CREATURE still POUNDING madly at the door and HOWLING in fury,VICTOR is wide-eyed with panic. He picks up a nearby lantern and sets the flame to thelaboratory. Soon, the entire scene is ablaze and the flames reach the door of the lab. TheCREATURE’s screams are heard from behind the door as the fire engulfs the laboratory.
VICTOR moves to flee, but is stopped by the CREATURE’s voice from beyond the door:
VICTOR, shocked at the CREATURE’s first words, turns back — but a wall of flamesnow separates them. VICTOR turns and flees. The flames recede as blackness envelopesthe lab.
VICTOR: IS IT POSSIBLE THAT WRETCHED BEAST ISCAPABLE OF LEARNING?HAVE I LEFT MY GREATEST WORK AND ALL MY DREAMSBEHIND ME, BURNING?I’VE DONE WHAT I MUSTBACK TO ASH AND DUSTTHAT WHICH NEVER SHOULD HAVE LIVED
On another part of the stage, ELIZABETH appears:
SONG: “THE HANDS OF TIME”
ELIZABETH: SO MANY WORRIED MONTHS WITHOUT A SINGLE LETTERWON’T YOU ALLAY OUR FEARS, MY DARLING?
The lights cross-fade to HENRY:
HENRY: SUCH TROUBLING NEWS WE’VE HEARDGREAT FIRES AND ACCUSATIONSAND YET FROM YOU, MY TRUSTED FRIENDTHERE’S SILENCE
ELIZABETH & HENRY: RACING EVER TOWARD TOMORROW, WHY DO WE?
HENRY: COULD HE NOT STAY HERE AT OUR SIDE?
ELIZABETH: COULD I NOT HOLD HIM IN MY ARMS FOREVER?
HENRY: COULD WE CHANGE THE WORLD...
ELIZABETH: ...AND SOMEHOW LEAVE THINGS JUST AS THEY’REDESIGNED?
ELIZABETH & HENRY: WOULD THAT BE A CRIME?IF WE TRIED TO STAY THE HANDS OF TIME
VICTOR re-appears and the immediate aftermath of the fire plays out. As accusingVOICES echo angrily in his mind, a PHYSICIAN and NURSE tend to him.
MAN: It was THAT man! Frankenstein!
WOMAN: I saw him running from the courtyard!
UNIVERSITY OFFICIAL: What were you doing locked up in that laboratory?!
Cross-fade to Geneva, where WILLIAM is composing a letter, his nanny JUSTINE at hisside:
WILLIAM: SO MANY YEARS APARTI BARELY KNOW YOU, VICTORWHAT IF WE NEVER MEET AGAIN, MY BROTHER?
JUSTINE: A TIME FOR EVERYTHINGYOU’LL LEARN SWEET MASTER WILLIAMTHE SILENT BONDS WE SHARE WITH FAMILYARE THOSE THAT SHALL ENDURE
BOTH: FOR ALWAYS
Cross-fade back to Ingolstadt, where VICTOR lies in a hospital bed, wide-eyed withmadness. The PHYSICIAN and NURSE continue their worried care of him:
PHYSICIAN: The patient is in a state of mental shock. Any inquests into the events at the Universitywill have to await his full recovery.
In Geneva, ELIZABETH and HENRY continue.
ELIZABETH & HENRY: RACING EVER TOWARD TOMORROW, WHY DO WE?
ELIZABETH: YOUR FATHER LONGS FOR YOUR EMBRACE
JUSTINE: A YOUNG BOY NEEDS A BROTHER’S HAND TO GUIDE HIM
ELIZABETH: REACH INTO THE PAST
HENRY: MAKE THE WORLD THE WAY IT WAS BEFORE
ALL: LET THE DAYS UNWINDREVERSE THE EVER-TWISTING HANDS OF TIME
Alone in his madness, VICTOR lashes out at the darkness.
VICTOR: No... no... get away... Devil!... DEMON!
HENRY / ELIZABETH: WHERE HAVE YOU GONE?THE TWISTING HANDS OF TIME
MY CHILDHOOD FRIEND?THEY TURN IN ONE DIRECTION
WALK WITH ME AGAINAND DRAW US EVER TOWARDTOMORROW
WILLIAM / JUSTINE: WHEN WILL YOU RETURN?
A FAM’LY LASTS FOREVERI FEAR WE’LL NEVER MEET AGAIN
A YOUNG BOY NEEDS A BROTHER’S HAND
ALL: THE TWISTING HANDS OF TIMETHEY TURN IN ONE DIRECTIONAND DRAW US EVER TOWARD ANOTHER DAYSO NEAR AND YET SO FAR
ELIZABETH: MY DARLING...
JUSTINE: GOOD MASTER...
WILLIAM: DEAR BROTHER...
SONG: “YOUR FATHER’S EYES”
FATHER: A YOUNG MAN IS SILENTLY CRYING IN FEARNO ONE TO AID HIM, FOR NOBODY HEARSEXCEPT FOR AN OLD MAN A COUNTRY APARTHIS FATHER ALONE KNOWS THE PAIN IN HIS HEARTI KNOW, MY SON, YOU ARE TROUBLED TODAYYOU’VE JOURNEYED TOO FAR AND PERHAPS LOST YOUR WAYYOU WONDER IF EVER YOU’LL FIND YOUR WAY HOMEBUT AS LONG AS I BREATHE YOU ARE NEVER ALONE
HOWEVER FAR YOU ROAMOR WHAT YOU DOTHERE ALWAYS IS ONE PERSON WHO BELIEVES IN YOUIT MATTERS NOT THE ROAD YOU CHOOSEFOR ONE THING YOU CAN NEVER LOSEYOU’LL ALWAYS BE THE LIGHT THAT SHINESWITHIN YOUR FATHER’S EYES
Victor, now recovered, appears before a UNIVERSITY OFFICIAL, who looks upon himdistrustfully:
UNIVERSITY OFFICIAL: I’m afraid there is insufficient evidence to charge you with any misconduct,Frankenstein. You may resume your studies here, but I strongly urge you to pursue a path thatwill not result in any further destruction.
VICTOR: Thank you, sir. Rest assured, I have no desire ever to return to science.
VICTOR exits. FATHER’s focus shifts to WILLIAM, who is suddenly before him:
FATHER: LIFE CAN BE HARD, IT CAN BREAK YOU IN TWOEACH TURN OF THE CARD, CAN BRING HEARTACHE ANEWAND EVEN THE STRONGEST OF MEN WITHER UNDER ITS HANDBUT IT SOMETIMES CAN EASE THE PAINTO KNOW THAT SOMEWHERE IN THIS WORLDTHERE’S SOMEONE WHO CARESONE MAN UNDERSTANDS
WILLIAM rises and hugs his father, who is now fighting tears. WILLIAM exits leavingbehind a single object: a RED BALL with which we’ve seen him playing. ELIZABETHre-emerges, also in tears.
ELIZABETH: I pray that this letter reaches you, Victor, for you must return to us at once. Expect tearsand sorrow on your arrival. For our beloved young William... your brother... is dead.
FATHER looks sadly upon the little, red ball. He picks it up and cradles it lovingly.
FATHER: THOUGH YOU MAY LOSE THE WORLD AND ALL YOU’VE GAINEDYOUR FATHER WILL BE THERE TO SHARE YOUR EVERY PAINWHETHER YOU HAVE LOST OR WONFOREVER YOU WILL BE MY SONAND ALWAYS BE THE LIGHT THAT SHINESWITHIN YOUR FATHER’S EYES...WITHIN YOUR FATHER’S EYES
During previous and next, VICTOR is seen making his journey back from Ingolstadt toGeneva. ELIZABETH continues her letter:
ELIZABETH: And our fortune grows worse still... It is believed that William was... murdered... by...
JUSTINE continues the text of the letter, her face a mask of shock.
JUSTINE: Justine Moritz, William’s governess, and our faithful servant. She was found with the locketthat I had given to William... the locket used to strangle him... with blood upon it. She protestsher innocence, but she is not believed, for she claims to have seen...
HENRY: ...some kind of monster... a fiend from some other world — the talk of a madwoman. Surelysomeone must know something that can explain this travesty... Victor.
VICTOR stands just outside the gates of Geneva. A deep sense of dread grips him.
VICTOR: IT LIVES! AND SOMEHOW HAS FOUND USTHE FIEND THAT HAS HAUNTED MY NIGHTMARES
A great FLASH OF LIGHTNING reveals a hulking silhouette behind VICTOR:
SONG: “THE CREATURE’S TALE”
CREATURE: YOU ARE THE FIEND AND I BEAR YOUR CURSE!TORN FROM MY GRAVE TO APPEASE YOUR DESIGNSAND THEN YOU ABANDONED ME — LEFT ME FOR DEAD
CREATURE: I have searched for you for a very long time.
VICTOR: You... you’re alive.
CREATURE: Despite your efforts to the contrary.
VICTOR: So many months. So many miles. How? Why??
CREATURE: THE TIME HAS COME TO ANSWER FOR YOUR SINSTHE DAY OF JUDGEMENT IS UPON YOU
VICTOR: I will not hear you! Begone! Or fight me until one of us is dead!
CREATURE: You will hear me well.
FOR IT IS YOU THAT IS THE AUTHOR OF MY MISERY
YOU WILL LISTEN TO MY TALEEVERY HARROWING DETAILTHEN YOU WILL KNOW WHY FOREVER I CURSE AT YOUR NAME
(Reprising his first spoken cry in the laboratory:)
VICTOR attempts to flee, but the CREATURE grabs VICTOR and violently throws himto the ground. He perches over him menacingly.
SONG: “THE WAKING NIGHTMARE”
CREATURE: ALL THAT I KNOW... ALL I REMEMBERRIPPED BY THE KNIFE, I AM TORN FROM MY SLEEPTHERE WERE NO DREAMS... NO TORTURED MEMORIESONLY A SILENCE ETERNAL AND BLISSFULLY DEEPAM I ALIVE OR IN PURGAT’RY? AM I INSANE?WHAT IS THIS ANIMAL GNAWING INSIDE OF MY BRAIN?
We hear the VOICES of people whom the CREATURE has encountered. They SCREAMand CURSE at him.
CREATURE: WHAT DO THEY FEAR? WHY AM I HUNTED?WHO IS THIS STRANGER INSIDE OF MY SKIN?BROKEN AND SCARRED... CHARRED LIKE AN EMBERAM I CONDEMNED THOUGH I CANNOT REMEMBER MY SIN?
WHAT HAVE I DONE TO DESERVE SUCH A SENTENCE IN HELL?BORN AS A DEMON, A GHOUL FROM A NIGHTMARE,YET ONE WHO STILL SUFFERS AND SCARS LIKE A HUMAN AS WELL
NOW HERE I STAND — HALF OF A MANWONDERING WHY I DRAW BREATHI’M HERE IN THE WAKING NIGHTMAREAND EVERY MOMENT TASTES OF DEATH
A HORDE of people are seen, and in a violent choreography, we see them tormenting theCREATURE.
HORDE: YOU’RE A BEAST TO BE FEAREDDO NOT DARE TO DRAW NEARYOU’RE AN OBJECT OF SHAMEWITHOUT SOUL OR A NAMENOTHING THAT YOU CAN DO WILL DISGUISE WHAT IS TRUEGOD HAS DAMNED YOU AT BIRTHAND BY HEAVEN WE’LL TRACK YOU AND HAUNT YOU ANDBANISH YOUR SOUL FROM THIS EARTH
CREATURE / HORDE: LOST AND ALONEOBJECT OF SHAME
COLDER THAN STONENO SOUL OR NAME
KNOWING SO DEEP IN MY BREAST
HEAVEN HAS DAMNED YOU AT BIRTHTHAT HERE IN THE WAKING NIGHTMARE
YOUR KIND HAS NO PLACE BUT THEGRAVE
AND WHATEVER HELL AWAITS THERE
YOU HAVE NO SOUL THAT CAN BESAVED
YES, HERE IN THE WAKING NIGHTMAREALL I WILL FIND IS FEARAND ALL I’LL EVER HEARIS THE SCREAMS OF THEIR TERROR AND SCORNWHILE EVERY MOMENT TASTES OF DEATH
VICTOR listens intently as the CREATURE stands, trembling, remembering the terror ofhis first hours.
CREATURE: AND I HEAR, LIKE A GHOST IN MY MINDECHOES AND FRAGMENTS OF MEMORYWITHOUT WORD OR A SOUNDWAS I ALIVE ONCE BEFORE?WAS I ONCE HUMAN LIKE THEM?AND COULD I AGAIN WALK IN THE LIGHT AND GOOD GRACES OF WOMEN AND MEN?
FORAGING FOR SHELTER I SOON FOUND A COTTAGE NEARI DID NOT DARE APPROACH TOO CLOSEREMEMBERING MY FEARFOR INSIDE THERE WAS—
A baby’s CRY. An old BLIND MAN enters with his daughter, AGATHA, a peasantwoman in her 20’s. She is carrying her infant child. With her help, he sits upon a woodenstool. We are inside their forest cottage.
AGATHA: But how will we survive the winter, Father?
BLIND MAN: God will provide for us... somehow.
CREATURE: ATTACHED THERE WAS A WOODSHEDAND I HID MYSELF INSIDEWAITING FOR THE DAYWHEN I MIGHT LIVE AMONG THEIR KIND
The CREATURE hides nearby in place from which he can watch them.
AGATHA: I do not trust this mysterious “Good Samaritan,” father. Something is wrong about it.
BLIND MAN: A kind stranger leaves food and firewood by our door. That is not a cause for mistrust.Surely he must be a friend.
The CREATURE reverts to his former self, barely able to form words:
CREATURE (to himself:) “F-f-friend?”
BLIND MAN: Trust is a virtue, my child. And surely one that God rewards.
The BLIND MAN picks up his violin and begins playing a lullaby for the crying child.AGATHA rocks her baby in her arms.
AGATHA: Ssshhhhhh. Everything will be all right.
She begins to sing to the baby:
SONG: “THE MUSIC OF LOVE”
AGATHA: AWAY, AWAY, COME AWAY WITH MEWHEN EVENING FALLS AND SHADOWS FLEECOME STAY, MY DEAR, COME STAY WITH MEWE’LL KEEP YOU SAFE AND WARMWE’LL KEEP YOU FAR FROM HARMNO TEARS CAN FIND YOU HERE
BLIND MAN: WE LIVE IN SIMPLE HARMONY
BLIND MAN & AGATHA: THE SONG OF LIFE IS ALL WE NEEDTHE MUSIC OF LOVETHE MUSIC OF LOVE
AWAY, SWEET CHILD, COME AWAY WITH MEDEMONS AND DRAGONS, LET THEM ALL BETOMORROW’S WORRIES ALL WILL KEEPWE HAVE EVERYTHING WE NEEDTHE SIMPLE THINGS INDEEDA SONG TO BRING YOU SLEEP
CREATURE: FOR THE FIRST TIME PAIN WASHED AWAYFOR THE FIRST TIME I SAW A WAYTHERE MIGHT BE A PLACE FOR MEA PLACE WITH A FAMILYLOVE AND SHELTER FOR ALL MY DAYS
BLIND MAN & AGATHA / CREATURE:WE LIVE IN SIMPLE HARMONY
KEEP ME SAFE AND WARMTHE SONG OF LIFE IS ALL WE NEED
KEEP ME FAR FROM HARM
AGATHA / BLIND MAN / CREATURE:MUSIC, MUSIC AWAY, AWAY MUSIC AND LOVEPRETTY LITTLE COME AWAY GIFTS FROMMUSIC ABOVE
WITH MEA GIFT FROM STAY, STAY MUSIC AND LOVEABOVE COME STAY
ALL: THE MUSIC OF LOVE
CREATURE: Finally... peace.
AGATHA: THE MUSIC OF LOVE
As the CREATURE watches over the BLIND MAN and his family, VICTOR listensintently as the tale continues:
CREATURE: I watched and listened to them for months. The sounds falling from their lips weresuddenly... words... with meaning. Each moment near them would ignite a spark in my mind, asif embers long cold were suddenly alive again. I felt... human. But was I human enough?
BLIND MAN: How grateful I am to finally speak with the author of our good fortune.
The CREATURE is now alone in the cottage with the BLIND MAN. He is in tworealities at once: reliving his encounter with the BLIND MAN while he tells it toVICTOR:
CREATURE: One day, I gathered the courage to approach the old man. He could not see me — sowas spared the horror. But...
BLIND MAN: ...when my daughter returns, I am certain she will welcome you into our home as afriend, just as I have.
CREATURE: “Home...” He welcomed me “home.” He called me... “friend.” I... loved them... theseperfect people. I can... love.
VICTOR: Then why do you stand before me today? What fate befell this good family?
The CREATURE ignores VICTOR’s question, lost in the memory. He picks up the BlindMan’s VIOLIN, gazing at it with wonder:
CREATURE: He made music for me.
We hear the beginnings of a happy melody played on a solo violin.
CREATURE: This wonderful man made music for me... and a home. Thank you, my friend. Thankyou... thank you...
The CREATURE clutches the violin to his chest, embracing it. Still nearby, the BLINDMAN tenses, as if locked in the Creature’s death grip.
BLIND MAN: Please... no...
The music begins to turn dark as the CREATURE grips the violin ever tighter.
CREATURE: I have found paradise. I am... home.
BLIND MAN: Stop! You are... h-hurting me!
The CREATURE begins to weep as pain of the memory floods back. Still he embraces theviolin, never wanting to let go. Suddenly, the music stops. The BLIND MAN is deathlystill. Silence.
Sobbing, the CREATURE lowers the violin gently to the floor, as lights go down on theBLIND MAN.
CREATURE: WHAT KIND OF MONSTER KILLS THE SOUL OF KINDNESSBY EMBRACING HIM WITH LOVE?SPEAK TO ME, MY FRIEND... MY ONLY FRIENDDO NOT ABANDON MEDON’T LEAVE ME IN THIS HEARTLESS WORLD ALONE
On another part of the stage, we see AGATHA’s return:
AGATHA: Father? Are you all ri—? (suddenly frightened:) Who are y—?
She sees him. Her eyes widen with overwhelming terror.
AGATHA: (ad lib, in fragments, barely audible:) Dear God... what... what are you?... the devilhimself... please... spare my... my child... my father... no... (finally gathering the strength to screamout:) NO!!!
She recoils and SCREAMS. The SCREAM ECHOES forever in the Creature’s mind andhe covers his ears in agony.
The CREATURE lashes out violently at VICTOR, knocking him to the ground.
CREATURE: WHY DID YOU MAKE ME MONSTROUS AND VILE?!A MERCHANT OF SORROW, AN AGENT OF DEATH!
VICTOR: Don’t you understand?! I was trying to erase the pain and sorrow of (death forever)!
CREATURE (cutting him off:) I KNOW TOO WELL YOUR VAINGLORIOUS PLANSTITCHED ME TOGETHER FROM GALLOWS AND GRAVESDID YOU REALLY THINK THAT YOU COULD MASTER LIFE AND DEATH LIKE YOU WERE GOD?
VICTOR (shocked:) How...? How do you know these things??
The CREATURE reaches into the pocket of his coat and retrieves... Victor’s laboratoryjournal.
CREATURE: Have you forgotten this...
VICTOR: My journal...
CREATURE: As I fled the flames, I shielded myself with your cloak — and found this within.Diagrams. Instructions. Your every dark scheme writ in your own hand. Through everything, Iclung to it. But now with the ability to understand. I learned the truth of what I am — and whois to blame.
CREATURE: I SWORE THAT I WOULD HAVE REVENGE AND SET TO TRACK YOU DOWNI DISCOVERED FRAnKENSTEIN’S A NAME OF GREAT RENOWNAND FOUND YOU HAD A FAMILY...
WILLIAM and JUSTINE enter, running playfully and laughing.
JUSTINE: Come back here, William! Why will you never listen to me?!
WILLIAM: Catch me if you can!
CREATURE: SUCH A PRIV’LEGED WORLD WAS YOURSWHILE MINE WAS LIVED IN SHAMEBUT WHAT IF ALL YOUR PRECIOUS GIFTSWERE RIPPED AWAY AND TORN APARTMIGHT THEN YOU KNOW MY PAIN?
The CREATURE and VICTOR recede into the darkness, leaving WILLIAM andJUSTINE alone, sitting together on the ground...
WILLIAM becomes preoccupied with an object in his hand — a locket.
JUSTINE: It was very generous of Miss Elizabeth to part with such a prized possession.
WILLIAM: It has a picture of my mother.
He shows the picture to JUSTINE.
JUSTINE: You have her eyes.
WILLIAM studies the photo.
WILLIAM (to no one in particular:) Why is that? That children end up with parts of them that looklike their parents?
JUSTINE: Well... God always makes each baby look a little like his mommy and daddy so that thestork is certain to make the delivery to the correct house.
WILLIAM slowly turns to her with a knowing look.
JUSTINE: (flustered:) Well... perhaps some... “subjects” are better left “un-explored,” Master William.
WILLIAM: But Victor says that every question must be asked. And I agree.
WILLIAM: TELL ME WHY DOES THE BREEZE BLOW?WHY DO BOTH THE FLOWER AND THE WEED GROW?THEN TELL ME WHY DO MEN FIGHT WARS?WHY DOES GOD EVEN CARE?WHY DOES HE LISTEN TO OUR PRAYERS?DOESN’T HE ALREADY KNOW WHAT WE’RE PRAYING FOR?
JUSTINE: CURIOUS, LITTLE BOYNO WONDER YOU’RE YOUR FATHER’S JOYNOW, NOT AN EDUCATED GIRL AM IBUT I KNOW THE HARDEST QUESTIONS BEGIN WITH“WHY?”
WILLIAM: All right, then...
WILLIAM: TELL ME HOW DO THE BIRDS GO?AND JUST HOW DO THEY GET ALONG WITH BEES SO?
JUSTINE: HOW DO YOU KNOW WHEN YOU’RE IN LOVE?
WILLIAM: HOW DO YOU KNOW JUST WHO TO TRUST?
WILLIAM: HOW DOES A JUSTICE GET SO JUST?
BOTH: HOW COULD WE DESERVE ALL THE THINGS WE’REDREAMING OF?
He displays the picture inside the locket to JUSTINE.
WILLIAM: DO I REALLY LOOK LIKE MY MOTHER?
JUSTINE: YOU’RE AS INQUISITIVE AS YOUR BROTHER
WILLIAM: DO YOU LIKE BEING MY NANNY?
JUSTINE: IT’S A FAR MORE CHALLENGING JOB THAN MANY
WILLIAM: WHY, JUSTINE, DO YOU TEASE ME?
JUSTINE: I DON’T KNOW, IT SEEMS TO PLEASE MEWILLIAM, CAN’T YOU SEE THROUGH ME BY NOW?CAN’T YOU TELL? HAVEN’T YOU KNOWN?I THINK OF YOU AS IF MY OWNYOU’VE NO GREATER CHAMPION THAN IJUST REMEMBER THAT I LOVE YOU AND NEVER QUESTION HOW... OR IF... OR WHY
The CREATURE appears behind them. They cannot see him, but he is ever-watching. Hegazes upon WILLIAM. The sharp RAP of judge’s gavel is heard. A MAGISTRATEappears and looks down upon JUSTINE sternly.
MAGISTRATE: Tell the court what happened next, Miss Moritz.
CREATURE: Another child of the Frankensteins...
JUSTINE: We were playing a game. He ran off into the woods. I searched for him all night!
CREATURE: Will he one day suffer the shame of his brother’s foul deeds... or repeat them?
VICTOR: LEAVE HIM BE! HE HAS NOT WRONGED YOU
CREATURE: WILLIAM, WILL YOU PLAY WITH ME?
WILLIAM: WHO ARE YOU, SIR? DO YOU KNOW ME?
CREATURE: I KNOW TOO WELL YOUR WRETCHED FAMILY
WILLIAM sees the Creature’s face and recoils. He runs off, terrified.
MAGISTRATE: Then how do you explain, woman, the bloody locket found on your person?!
JUSTINE: I told you... I saw some kind of demon! It is responsible, not I!
The MAGISTRATE is now backed by a GALLERY of onlookers, calling for Justine’sconviction.
VICTOR: WHY DID YOU DO IT? KILL A CHILD?
CREATURE: WHY DID YOU LEAVE ME THERE TO DIE?
VICTOR: SO FULL OF WONDER, FULL OF PROMISE
CREATURE: HAVE YOU FORGOTTEN? SO WAS I!
As the GALLERY cries for blood, ELIZABETH appears, along with Victor’s FATHER.
JUSTINE: I am innocent, I swear it!
ELIZABETH: VICTOR, NO! I KNOW THAT SHE LOVED THAT BOY
CREATURE: Another fair face that looked upon me only with revulsion.
ELIZABETH: HEAVEN, PLEASE! JUSTINE’S LIKE A SISTER TO US
CREATURE: Were she only like me. One of my kind.
FATHER: VICTOR, MY GOD! HOW CAN THIS BE SO?
ELIZABETH: VICTOR, HOW?! I KNOW IT CANNOT BE TRUE
HENRY: SOMEWHERE THERE MUST BE A WITNESS
ELIZABETH: THERE MUST BE SOMETHING YOU CAN SAY
FATHER & HENRY: SOMEONE KNOWS THE TRUTH
ELIZABETH: SOMETHING YOU CAN DO
GALLERY: WHO SPEAKS FOR THE CHILD?!
CREATURE: I made sure that the evidence would convict her of the boy’s murder. Don’t you thinkthat clever of me, Victor?
ELIZABETH: WHY IS THIS HAPPENING?
MAGISTRATE / GALLERY: WHY DID YOU MURDER THAT BOY?
FATHER: WHY MY POOR WILLIAM?
MAGISTRATE / GALLERY: WHY SHOULD WE HEAR ANYMORE?
HENRY: WHY WILL NO MAN SPEAK THE TRUTH?
ALL: WHY ARE YOU SILENT WHILE INNOCENTS SUFFER AND PAYWITH THEIR LIVES?!
VICTOR can stand no more: He screams in outrage. VICTOR draws a pistol from hiscoat and aims it at the CREATURE, quaking with rage. Suddenly, he is alone with theCREATURE once again.
Unable to harm the CREATURE, VICTOR lowers the gun.
SONG: “THE PROPOSITION”
VICTOR: I CREATED YOU WITH A NOBLE PURPOSETO FREE MANKIND FROM THE FEAR OF DEATHIF I HAD KNOWN IT WOULD LEAD TO SUCH BLOODSHEDI WOULD NEVER HAVE GIVEN YOU BREATH
CREATURE: HAS IT NOT PIERCED YOUR BRILLIANT MIND?OUR ACTIONS CANNOT BE UNDONEI WILL RAIN FEAR UPON ALL YOUR KINDUNLESS... YOU NOW COMPLETE WHAT YOU’VE BEGUN
The CREATURE seizes VICTOR—he is powerless to free himself or fight back.
CREATURE: LISTEN CAREFULLY, VICTOR FRANKENSTEINI HAVE A PROPOSITION TO PRESENT TO YOUYOU HAVE ONE CHANCE TO REDEEM YOURTRANSGRESSIONSYOU HAVE ONE LAST EXPERIMENT TO DO
The CREATURE releases VICTOR, who falls to the ground gasping for breath.
CREATURE: CREATE A WOMAN TO SHARE THIS STRIFEMAKE HER AS VILE AS MY DARKEST PAINGRANT ME THE JOY OF A KINDRED WIFE IN RETURN... YOU SHALL NEVER SEE ME AGAIN
VICTOR: NEVER! IMPOSSIBLE! PREPOSTEROUS!YOUR SCHEME IS OUTRAGEOUS! ABSURD!ONE MORE JUST AS MONSTROUS?I WON’T INFLICT SUCH HORROR ON THIS WORLD
CREATURE: WHAT’S WRONG, WHAT’S RIGHT? DO YOU DECIDE?I’M MORE THAN BLOOD AND BONEI NEED A MATE... ONE MADE AS II WON’T EXIST ALONE
VICTOR: WHO ARE YOU TO MAKE DEMANDS?WHO’S NOW TWICE A CRIMINALMY BROTHER’S BLOOD UPON YOUR HANDSASKING ME TO SERVE YOUR WILLA SECOND BEAST TO BRING NEW TERRORUPON THE YOUNG AND INNOCENTI’LL NOT WILLINGLY REPEAT MY ERRORYOU WILL NOT GET MY CONSENT
CREATURE: VICTOR, YOU COMPLETE THIS TASKAND END YOUR FAMILY’S MOURNINGIT’S THE LAST I’LL EVER ASKTHE BOY WAS JUST A WARNINGCREATE ANOTHER WRETCH AS IA LOVE I CANNOT BE DENIEDA SOUL CONTENT TO LIVE BESIDE MEI’LL TAKE MY BRIDE AND RUN AWAYSOMEPLACE SAFE WHERE WE CAN STAYFAR FROM MAN AND HIS INSANITY
VICTOR: I THINK IT WRONG, I THINK IT SICKA CORRUPTION OF BIOLOGY
CREATURE: BUT HERE’S A CHANCE TO MAKE IT RIGHTTO OFFER AN APOLOGY
VICTOR: COULD I UNDO THE GREAT MISTAKE?ERASE THE SORROW FROM MY WAKENEVER AGAIN TO FACE THIS DEMONAND MIGHT I STILL ATTAIN THE DREAMWITH NOW A WOMAN AS THE MEANS?BESTOW NEW LIFE UPON MY MISSION
Behind them, another scene is forming: a CROWD of people file in as if anticipating amacabre ceremony.
ALL: LIFE EVERLASTING... REANIMATION...A FLAWLESS NEW DESIGNTHE FINEST WOMAN IN ALL CREATIONAND SHE WILL BE...
VICTOR: —BUT SOFTER NOW, A FEMALE FRAMEAN AGILE HAND’S REQUIREDAND ONE WHO IS LOST MAY YET BE RECLAIMEDREBORN OF HEAVEN’S FIRE!
Behind them, JUSTINE is led onto a scaffold, her hands bound. The CROWD gathersclose to witness her execution.
CREATURE: YES, HERE’S YOUR CHANCEYOU WILL ATONE AND NEVER SEE ME AGAINMASTER YOUR FATE, AND FACE THE UNKNOWNAND BRING THIS NIGHTMARE TO AN END
VICTOR / CREATURE: YES HERE’S MY CHANCEHERE’S YOUR LAST CHANCE
I WILL ATONE TO ATONEI’LL FIN’LLY KNOW PEACE...
...AS WILL IONE MORE LEAP...
ONE LEAPINTO THE INTO THE UNKNOWN UNKNOWN
VICTOR & CREATURE: AND PURGE THE NAME OF FRANKENSTEIN!
The CREATURE hands an object to VICTOR — his journal.
JUSTINE: I am innocent!!! Innocent!!!
The CREATURE then extends his hand to VICTOR. Victor pauses. The CREATUREseizes his hand, sealing their bargain.
BLACKOUT on JUSTINE as we hear the ominous CRASH of the trap door open andthe SQUEAK of the noose as it tightens.
END OF ACT 1.
ACT 2, SCENE 1
VICTOR enters to foreboding, ethereal music, followed soon after by ELIZABETH. Theylock eyes from across the stage.
Then, the darkness breaks and the lights and music turn hopeful. They are at the grandFrankenstein home and are soon surrounded by a group of finely-dressed GUESTS,gathered for another happy — if somewhat somber — celebration.
SONG: “A HAPPIER DAY”
GUESTS: A HAPPIER DAY AWAITS FOR ALLWHO HAVE ENOUGH FAITH TO FIND ITFOR EVERY CLOUD THAT SCARS OUR SKIESA HEAVEN IS WAITING BEHIND ITALL OF OUR SORROWS ARE SIMPLY THE TOLLTHAT EVERY TRAV’LER MUST PAYUPON THE ROAD OF A THOUSAND TOMORROWSTHAT LEADS TO A HAPPIER DAY
The mood breaks once again as WALTON, the sea captain, emerges from their midst toaddress us. Once again, we hear the howling WINDS and see the harsh, white light ofthe frozen Arctic.
WALTON: Captain Robert Walton, in a letter to his sister, November 9th, 1793. Though he was neardeath, gasping for each breath, Frankenstein continued his tale. As if he would not let go of lifeuntil the telling of it was complete. It pained me to hear it. So much sorrow. Such greatsuffering...
Victor’s FATHER appears as WALTON recedes. He addresses his guests:
FATHER: ...but there is a time for all things. To reap and to sow... to weep and to rejoice. And a timeto put tragedy in the past. Since the day that Elizabeth came to live with us as our ward, it hasbeen clear that she and Victor were destined for each other. And today, my friends, we gather tocelebrate their engagement.
VICTOR and ELIZABETH come forward and join hands happily as the GUESTSapplaud them. FATHER raises his glass in a toast.
FATHER: Life, lest we forget, is for living.
GUEST 1: Hear, hear.
GUEST 2: To the Frankensteins.
ALL GUESTS: To the Frankensteins!
GUESTS: ALL OF OUR SORROWS ARE SIMPLY THE TOLLTHAT EVERY TRAV’LER MUST PAYUPON THE ROAD OF A THOUSAND TOMORROWSTHAT LEADS TO A HAPPIER DAY
HENRY emerges from their midst. His obvious distress stands in marked contrast to thecelebration.
HENRY: SEE THEM SMILE... SEE THEM LAUGHSEE THEM DANCE AND CELEBRATEI’D SHARE THEIR PLEASURE IF I COULDBUT TO PRETEND WOULD DO NO GOODFOR SOMETHING HERE IS OUT OF PLACE
HAUNTED AND DISTANTA MAN POSSESSEDHE SHROUDS HIMSELF IN MYSTERYIT’S LIKE A SICKNESS DEEP INSIDEWHAT IS IT VICTOR NEEDS TO HIDE?WHAT IS THIS STRANGE INSANITY?
I’VE BARELY SEEN HIM FOR THESE MANY MONTHSBUT I CAN GUESS THE REASON WHYSOMEHOW HE FAILED WRITE HIS DESTINYAND NOW HE MEANS AGAIN TO TRYNOT EVERY MOUNTAIN MUST BE CLIMBEDNOT EVERY SECRET SHOULD BE KNOWNAND THOUGH THE FUTURE MAY BE OURSIT ISN’T OURS ALONE
During the previous, VICTOR has quietly exited. ELIZABETH now steps forward alone.
ELIZABETH: I FEEL THE WORLD IS FINALLY SLOWING DOWNAND I AM STANDING ON MORE SOLID GROUNDTHE DREAM I FEARED WAS LOST IS FOUNDAT LAST... OR SO IT SEEMSI KNOW THERE’S SOMETHING YOU STILL KEEP FROM MEYOUR WOUNDED HEART YOU GUARD WITH SECRECYWHAT CAN I DO TO HELP YOU TO SEETHAT LOVE... HOLDS ALL WE NEED
I KNOW YOU’VE DEMONS STILL TO SLAYWE ALL HAVE ROADS THAT WE MUST WALK ALONEBUT IF YOU CARE FOR ME, I PRAYYOU’LL LEAVE YOUR OTHER WORLD BEHIND... UNKNOWN
HENRY / ELIZABETH: BOUND BY A DUTY,I WILL TRY
I CANNOT KEEP THIS FLAME ALONETO RESCUE VICTOR ON MY OWN
THE ONLY PATH I’M LEFT IS YOURSAND STEER HIS PATHWAY TO THE LIGHT FOR YOU THE WORLD’S AN OPEN
ROADBEFORE HE’S LOST TO THE UNKNOWN
FOR ME, A ROOM WITH BUT ONE DOOR
FATHER / GUESTS (Over duet, following:)A HAPPY DAYA DARK, UNCERTAIN ROADALONG LIFE’S WAY
HENRY / ELIZABETH: WILL SORROW BE THE TOLLFOR ALL OUR SORROWS ARE THE TOLL
THIS WEARY TRAVELER MUST PAY...EV’RY LIFE’S TRAVELER MUST PAY
UPON A DARK, UNCERTAIN ROAD?UPON A DARK,UNCERTAIN ROAD
HENRY & ELIZABETH: TO A HAPPIER DAY
HENRY exits — a man with a mission. ELIZABETH exits with FATHER.
GUESTS: A HAPPIER DAY AWAITS FOR ALLWHO HAVE ENOUGH FAITH TO FIND ITFOR EVERY CLOUD THAT SCARS OUR SKIESA HEAVEN IS WAITING BEHIND ITALL OF OUR SORROWS ARE SIMPLY THE TOLLTHAT EVERY TRAV’LER MUST PAYUPON THE ROAD OF A THOUSAND TOMORROWSTHAT LEADS TO A HAPPIER DAY
The GUESTS disperse to reveal...
...VICTOR in another laboratory. Again, there is a body lying upon a table — this timewith a clearly female form: the corpse of JUSTINE. VICTOR hovers around the bodyuneasily, a primitive scalpel in his hand.
SONG: “THE MODERN PROMETHEUS”
VICTOR: SO STILL THIS SHADOW OF A WOMAN LIESTHE FUTURE SLEEPING IN HER FORMDARE I FREE HER FROM HER DEATHQUICKEN NOW HER PULSE AND BREATHAND MAKE HER ONCE AGAIN BE BORN?WHY DOES THE KNIFE QUAKE IN MY FINGERS?WHY IS MY HEART AN EMPTY SHELL?WHAT IF SHE AWAKES LIKE HIM?MURDEROUS AND VILE WITHIN?AN ANGEL BANISHED THEN TO HELL?No!
I’VE GONE TOO FAR TO TURN BACK NOWTHE DARKNESS WILL NOT BE DENIEDAND NOW THE MODERN PROMETHEUSIS GOING TO CREATE HIS BRIDE
CREATURE (Voice-over:) Do not delay, Victor, for I will be ever-watching and when your labors arethrough I shall appear to claim what is mine. Heed my wishes. You may be my creator, but I amyour master — obey!
VICTOR: I’VE GONE TO FAR TO TURN BACK NOWTHERE’S NOTHING LEFT I NEED DECIDEI AM THE MODERN PROMETHEUSAND READY TO CREATE THIS BRIDE
HENRY appears, having discovered VICTOR as he vowed to.
HENRY: WHAT HERESY HAVE YOU DEVISED?IS THIS THE SCIENCE YOU CONCEIVED?WITH NATURE’S EVERY LAW DEFIEDWHAT GOOD COULD EVER BE ACHIEVED?
VICTOR (Resolute, yet uncertain:) The power of life and death is in my hands. I had erred before, atIngolstadt. But this time will be different. She will be different.
HENRY: The question is not what you “can” do. The question is what you “should” do.
VICTOR: I’VE GONE TO FAR TO TURN BACK NOWAND SOON YOU’LL SEE I’M JUSTIFIEDI AM THE MODERN PROMETHEUSREADY TO CREATE THIS BRIDE
HENRY: MAN MUSTN’T TRY TO ACT LIKE GODPROMETHEUS WAS MERELY MYTHAND IF YOU TOY WITH NATURE’S COURSEYOUR FATE WILL BE THE SAME AS HIS
VICTOR: I CANNOT BELIEVE WHAT I AM HEARINGA GREAT DISCOVERY IS NEARLESSER MEN CAN WAIT BEHINDPARALYZED OF HEART AND MINDBUT I AM NOT AFRAID TO DAREI’LL CHANGE THE COURSE OF HISTORYPLEASE SEE BEYOND YOUR PETTY FEARSI WAS ONCE A DREAMER—NOW I’M MAN’S REDEEMERWE’RE ON THE VERGE OF NEW FRONTIERS
The CREATURE appears, unseen to VICTOR.
HENRY: (Over the other two, below:) CAN’T YOU SEE WHAT YOU’VE BECOME?YOUR SCIENCE IS INSANITYYOU’RE NOT A MODERN PROMETHEUSYOU CANNOT SAVE HUMANITY
CREATURE / VICTOR: IT’S GONE TOO FAR TO TURN BACK NOW
SHE’S GOING TO BE PERFECTMY WISHES SHALL NOT BE DEFIED
A GODDESS HERE ON EARTHFOR NOW THE MODERN PROMETHEUS
BEHOLD THE MODERN PROMETHEUSIS READY TO CREATE MY BRIDE
BEAR WITNESS TO HER BIRTH
As the storm rises, we hear the VOICES of the chorus swelling with it.
VICTOR: The destiny of humanity will not be stayed, Henry.
HENRY: I cannot allow you to destroy yourself. I will do everything in my power to see that thisabomination is exposed — and brought to an end.
HENRY turns to exit, only to find himself in the path of the CREATURE who seizes himby the throat.
HENRY freezes and the lights go down on him.
A powerful lightning STRIKE. The lights flicker and the BUZZ of electrical energy isdeafening. The BRIDE suddenly sits bolt upright on the table. She gasps horribly for herfirst breath.
For a moment, she appears as we would expect JUSTINE to. But soon it is clear that sheis now something far more frightening; as if resurrection itself has turned her intosomething inhuman.
The CREATURE looks upon her, seeing only his salvation, but VICTOR looks upon themboth with horror.
VICTOR: DAMN THIS FEVER IN MY MINDONCE AGAIN IT TURNED ME BLINDI HAVE DELIVERED ANOTHER LIKE HIM TO ITS BIRTHI HAVE INFLICTED ENOUGH OF A STAIN ON THIS EARTH!
VICTOR takes the scalpel in his hand and, with a CRY OF ANGUISH, plunges it intothe BRIDE’s back! Her body convulses, then slumps lifelessly.
The CREATURE rushes to his fallen bride, and cradles her lovingly. He then looks toVICTOR with unbridled rage:
CREATURE: WHAT HAVE YOU DONE? YOU’VE MURDERED HER!
VICTOR: YOU ARE THE MURDERER!
CREATURE: LIAR! YOU PROMISED TO—
VICTOR: I WAS A FOOL TO HAVE—
CREATURE: WHAT OF YOUR DESTINY?
VICTOR: YOU ARE THE CHILDREN OF HELL!
CREATURE: YOUR CHILDREN AS WELL
VICTOR: YOU’RE A FIEND
CREATURE: — THAT YOU MADE
VICTOR: A MISTAKE
CREATURE: — THAT YOU PLANNED
VICTOR: YOU MUST DIE!
VICTOR lashes out at the CREATURE with the knife, but the CREATURE easily stopshim, holding him in a death grip.
CREATURE: — IT IS YOUWHO SOON WILL FEEL DEATH’S ICY HAND!
The CREATURE turns the knife back on VICTOR. Be he cannot bring himself to killhim. We hear a memory of the happy refrain of the party GUESTS:
GUESTS (off-stage:) A HAPPIER DAY AWAITS FOR ALLWHO HAVE ENOUGH FAITH TO FIND ITFOR EVERY CLOUD THAT SCARS OUR SKIESA HEAVEN IS WAITING BEHIND IT
He forces VICTOR to drop the knife, then draws him close.
CREATURE: Hear this, Victor Frankenstein. From this moment forth, your destruction will be mysole occupation. I will be with you on your wedding-night.
In an instant, the CREATURE is gone, leaving VICTOR trembling with fear and hatred.
VICTOR: If that is to be the moment of our final battle, then let it come.
ELIZABETH appears in a wedding dress. She is trying to appear happy... yet cannot.
She and VICTOR occupy the stage in separate places and times. They speak not to eachother but as if voicing innermost thoughts:
SONG: “THE HANDS OF TIME (REPRISE)”
ELIZABETH: OUR DAY IS ALMOST HEREWHERE IS THE JOY IT PROMISED?WHAT IS THIS PALL UPON OUR WORLD?DEAR VICTOR...
VICTOR: THE DAY IS ALMOST HEREAND EITHER HE OR I WILL FALLNO MATTER WHICH, IT WILL BE OVER THENDONE ONCE AND FOR ALL
VICTOR: ...and if I survive, then I will tell her all. But not before.
Victor‘s FATHER appears on another part of the stage.
FATHER: Alphonse Frankenstein kindly requests the honor of your presence at the wedding of hisward, Elizabeth Lavenza to his son, Victor.
SONG: “THE WORKINGS OF THE HEART”
ELIZABETH: HE’S HERE WITH ME, YET SEES ME NOTHE LOVES, BUT CANNOT GIVEHE SEEKS THE MYSTERIES OF LIFEWITHOUT FIRST KNOWING WHAT IT MEANS TO LIVE
A BRILLIANT MIND... SUCH GIFTED HANDS...A MASTER OF HIS ARTAND YET HE STILL CAN’T UNDERSTANDTHE WORKINGS OF THE HEARTYOU NEED NOT FACE THIS WORLD ALONEOR KEEP YOUR SECRETS LOCKED INSIDELOVE CAN WEATHER ANY STORMIF YOU TRUST IN YOU AND IHOW CAN WE LIVE, HOW CAN WE LOVEOUR SOULS A WORLD APART?YOUR NOBLEST DREAMS ARE NOT ABOVETHE WORKINGS OF THE HEART
VICTOR: I LOST MY WAY SO LONG AGOTOO MANY SINS TO NOW CONFESSAND YET YOU STILL CAN TOUCH ME SOTHROUGH THIS PAIN AND EMPTINESS
During the course of the song, they gradually move together, until they are in the sametime and place.
ELIZABETH: YOU NEEDN’T FEAR TOMORROWI LOVE THE MAN YOU AREYOUR HEART IS ONE THAT FOLLOWSSOME BRIGHT, BUT DISTANT STAR
VICTOR: HOW COULD I CARE FOR ANY OTHER LIFE?WITH YOU MY WORLD BEGINS ANEWWHILE I WAS CHASING DREAMS ACROSS THE NIGHTI COULDN’T SEE, AS NOW I SEEMY ONLY DREAM IS YOU
ELIZABETH: ALWAYS DID I KNOW YOU’D SAY THESE WORDS TO MEI’VE KNOWN THE GOODNESS IN YOU ALL OUR LIVESDON’T BLAME YOURSELF FOR WHAT YOU CANNOT BE
A minister appears.
MINISTER: Dearly beloved... we are gathered here today before God to unite this man and woman inholy matrimony.
ELIZABETH / VICTOR: WE NEEDN’T FEARTOMORROW
WITH YOU THE WORLD BEGINS ANEWTRUE LOVE CAN NEVER DIE
YOU ARE MY ONLY GUIDING STARWITH ALL THESE DREAMS TO FOLLOW
AM I TOO LATE TO LIVE THIS DREAM?PLEASE PROMISE ME YOU’LL TRY
TO KNOW THE WORKINGS OF THE HEART
SO SOON THE END TO ALL THISMADNESS
HOW I SO WANT TO BELIEVE YOU
NEVER AGAIN WILL YOU KNOWSADNESS
TO HOLD YOU FAST AND NEVER LEAVE YOU
BOTH: THROUGH DARKEST NIGHTS AND LOST DAYSOUR HEARTS WILL LOVE FOR ALWAYSTHAT’S SOMETHING EVEN DEATH CANNOT UNDO
VICTOR and ELIZABETH join hands solemnly — almost with a sense of foreboding.
MINISTER: I now pronounce you man and wife.
They kiss. The scene shifts and VICTOR drifts away from her, his face a mask of dread.
VICTOR: It was planned for us to spend the first night of our union in a villa on the shores of LakeGeneva. From there, I would be sure to see his approach, and I could go out to meet my fate. AndElizabeth would be spared the sight of it.
VICTOR exits, leaving ELIZABETH alone.
In her chamber, ELIZABETH fidgets nervously. Suddenly, a voice from the shadows:
CREATURE: What a beautiful bride you make.
ELIZABETH: Who is there?? Who are you?
The CREATURE’s giant form is silhouetted by the light of an open window.
CREATURE: Behold... your husband’s greatest accomplishment.
The CREATURE steps into her view. She recoils in horror.
SONG: “AN ANGEL’S EMBRACE”
CREATURE: THIS IS THE WORK OF THE MAN THAT YOU LOVEYOUR DOCTOR OF THE DEADWHO ROBBED ME OF ETERNAL RESTAND CURSED ME WITH LIFE INSTEAD
She manages to control her fear enough to speak:
ELIZABETH: Are you the dark secret Victor cannot share with me? Are you the source of this family’ssorrow?!
CREATURE: Yes, there is blood on my hands — but also upon your dear Victor’s. (near tears:) Hehas... murdered the woman who was to be my bride.
ELIZABETH: That cannot be! (she studies him:) But... I can see the... pain in your eyes. (cautiously:)What is your name?
CREATURE: HE GAVE ME NO NAME!!!
ELIZABETH: If you do not harm me... I will see that you are treated justly.
Tears trace the CREATURE’s face.
ELIZABETH: Please... ? Let me help you.
With trembling hand, she reaches up and brushes a tear away. To touch him is horrid,but she fights off the revulsion. The CREATURE is astonished at one of the few gesturesof kindness he has known. It both touches and enrages him.
CREATURE: WHY IS IT HE SHOULD KNOW SUCH LOVEWHILE DENYING ME THE SAME?WHAT IS IT LIKE IN AN ANGEL’S EMBRACE...?
At some point during the above, the CREATURE draws her suddenly, violently, into hisembrace. ELIZABETH gasps for breath.
ELIZABETH: You... you’re hurting me.
CREATURE: Your pain will be fleeting, sweet bride. Mine goes on... and on... and on...
ELIZABETH stands, frozen in death. VICTOR appears at the door of her chamber tofind her. As he enters in shock, she drifts by him, eventually exiting into the darkness.VICTOR, near emotional breakdown, now stands before Elizabeth’s grave. He clutchesthe long, white glove she was wearing in her last moments.
SONG: “THE WORKINGS OF THE HEART” (REPRISE)
VICTOR: I TRIED TO MAKE A WORLD FOR YOUWHERE DEATH WOULD NEVER TOUCH OUR LIVESAND NOW MY LOVE HAS FALLEN TOTHE FATE THAT SHOULD BE MINEYOUR PEACE HAS COMEYOU’LL CRY NO MORELET ALL YOUR PAIN AND FEAR DEPARTI WILL KEEP YOU SAFE INSIDETHE WORKINGS OF MY HEART
VICTOR falls to his knees. On another part of the stage, his FATHER appears.
SONG: “YOUR FATHER’S EYES (REPRISE)”
FATHER: A YOUNG MAN IS SILENTLY CRYING IN PAINNO ONE TO AID HIM, FOR NONE SHARE HIS NAME...THOUGH YOU MAY LOSE THE WORLD AND ALL YOU OWNAND EVEN IF YOU’RE LEFT TO WALK THIS WORLD ALONEIT MATTERS NOT THE ROAD YOU CHOOSEFOR ONE THING YOU CAN NEVER LOSEYOU’LL ALWAYS BE THE LIGHT THAT SHONEWITHIN YOUR FATHER’S EYES
PROJECTION: Cemetery. FATHER recedes into the darkness.
VICTOR: Is it possible to perish of a broken heart? If so, then for your death too, FATHER, I am nowresponsible. (turning his gaze outward:) And yet it is not ended. “It” lives. And I will find him.
On another part of the stage, the CREATURE is seen, a picture of inner torment.
SONG: “THESE HANDS”
CREATURE: WHY THIS RAGE? WHY DID I DO THIS?WHY THIS VENOM IN MY VEINS?WILL THIS BLOODLUST NOT BE SILENCED‘TIL NO LIVING SOUL REMAINS?RIGHTEOUS WRATH... FITS OF FURY...THOUGHTS I CANNOT UNDERSTANDSAINTLY SOULS, CHERISHED CHILDRENMURDERED BY THESE HORRID HANDS!
The CREATURE suddenly quiets, fixated upon his hands, as if foreign objects.
CREATURE: THESE HANDSHOW I FEAR FOR THESE HANDSHOW I WONDER IFEVER HAD THESE HANDS BEEN HELD WITH COMPASSIONCOULD THEY DO WHAT THEY’VE DONETHESE HANDS?
AND WHAT OF THESE EYES?BLIND WITH HATE ARE THESE EYESCOULD IT ONCE BE THATSOMEONE GAZED INTO THESE EYES WITH AFFECTIONAND SAW GOOD DEEP WITHINTHESE EYES?
AND WHY... HAVING TASTED OF VENGEANCEDO THESE LIPS CURL WITH MADNESS AND PAIN?CRYING IN VAIN:“A SOUL THAT COULD LOVE IS NOW HELPLESSLY CHAINED TO THESE HANDS!”
AND THESE EARS STILL HEAR HER CRYINGAND WILL NEVER KNOW LAUGHTER OR SONGEVER SO LONGAS BLOOD OF THE INNOCENT RUNS RED UPONTHESE HANDS
THESE DETESTABLE HANDSAND THIS TERRIBLE HIDE WITH ITS POISON INSIDEHATED LIMBS AND FOUL HEARTI WOULD TEAR THEM APARTIF I ONLY COULD FEEL WHAT I FELT WHEN I HELD HER WITHINTHESE HANDS
UNFORGIVING, UNMERCIFUL HANDSTHESE UNFEELING, CONTEMPTIBLE HANDSAND OUR END WILL NOT COMEUNTIL JUSTICE IS DONE BYTHIS... MAN!
VICTOR re-appears and the CREATURE calls out to him:
CREATURE: Do you now know what it’s like to thirst for vengeance, Victor Frankenstein? Thenprepare for a journey that will be long and painful... I will leave my mark on each byway andvillage... and you will know that you travel in my wake. Are you equal to the challenge? If so...then pursue me — if you dare.
SONG: “THE CHASE”
VICTOR: IF I MUST... TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH
PROJECTION: A giant map of EUROPE, over which their course across the continentwill be tracked.
VICTOR moves downstage, unable to see the CREATURE stalking his every step. TheCHORUS enters — foreigners and strangers among whom VICTOR is traveling. Overnext, VICTOR fetches a map from his pocket and uses it to navigate his course.
CHORUS: RACING AFTER SHADOWS ON SOME DISTANT ROADYOUR EVERY STEP IS FUELED BY RAGEBUT IS THERE SOMETHING IN YOUR PATH THAT HAUNTSYOU?
Visions of WILLIAM, his FATHER, and JUSTINE appear to VICTOR:
WILLIAM: CAN YOU TELL ME WHY...?
FATHER: DO YOU EVEN KNOW WHAT YOU PURSUE?
JUSTINE: RACE A THOUSAND MILES
GHOSTS & CHORUS: STILL YOU MAY NOT FIND THE THING YOU CHASE
TITLE: AUSBERG, BAVARIA
The CREATURE lingers tauntingly near VICTOR, but VICTOR cannot see him:
Another “clue” is passed by the CREATURE to VICTOR:
CREATURE: Have you the courage to venture beyond the familiar climes of Bavaria, farther into theNorth-land? Come! Race with the devil!
VICTOR: AT EACH TURN HE MOCKS ME WITH A CRYPTIC ANDINFURIATING CLUEI WILL NOT GIVE UP TILL HE’S DEAD!
CHORUS: RACING AFTER SOMETHING LOST INSIDE YOUR SOUL
A vision of Henry:
HENRY: HAVE YOU FORGOTTEN ALL WE SHARED?IS THERE NO LIGHT WITHIN YOUR HEART TO GUIDE YOU?
WILLIAM & JUSTINE: ARE YOU LOST & COLD?
FATHER: ARE WE EVER TRULY ALL ALONE?
GHOSTS & CHORUS: RACE A THOUSAND MILESSTILL YOU MAY NOT FIND THE THING YOU CHASE
TITLE: BRESLAU, PRUSSIA
Again, the CREATURE taunts VICTOR, just beyond his reach or sight:
CREATURE: Growing weary, my enemy? Our journey has barely begun. Follow me across the Baltic,even farther into the forbidding North.
VICTOR: HOW MUCH MORE CAN ONE MAN ENDURE?
A vision of ELIZABETH appears to him:
ELIZABETH: THE ROAD MAY TWIST AND TURN
WILLIAM: TELL ME WHY??
ELIZABETH: BUT STILL YOU’VE ONE DIRECTION
FATHER: A YOUNG MAN IS SILENTLY CRYING INPAIN
ELIZABETH: AND YOU HAVE KNOWN IT ALL ALONG
JUSTINE: ARE YOU INNOCENT?!
HENRY: WHY CAN YOU NOT SEE THE TRUTH?
ELIZABETH: DEAR VICTOR
GHOSTS & CHORUS: THE ROAD MAY TWIST AND TURNBUT STILL YOU’VE ONE DIRECTIONIT IS THE ONE YOU’VE KNOWN FOR ALL YOUR LIFESO NEAR AND YET SO FAR...
TITLE: FAUSKE, NORWAY
CREATURE: The end grows near, Frankenstein. Follow me to the ices of the Arctic. There, the battle’send awaits.
The CREATURE vanishes.
VICTOR: WHAT IS IT THAT I MUST DO TO BRINGTHIS BLOODY NIGHTMARE TO AN END?
CHORUS: YOU MUST BEAR YOUR SOLEMN DUTY
VICTOR: FROM THAT COLD AND BARREN LAND HE BECKONS ME TO FACE HIM ONCE AGAIN
CHORUS: AND ACCEPT WHAT IS YOUR OWN
VICTOR: IS IT THERE REDEMPTION IS FOUND?
CHORUS: LOOK INSIDE YOUR HEART
VICTOR: WHAT IS IT COMPELLING ME TO FOLLOW IN EACHFOOTSTEP HE HAS LAID?
CHORUS: LONG AGO YOU CHOSE YOURPATHWAY
VICTOR: ARE WE SOMEHOW LINKED? THE FOOL CREATOR AND THE LIFE THAT HE HAS MADE?
CHORUS: WE MUST ANSWER FOR OUR DEEDS
VICTOR: ECHOING INSIDE MY HEART ARE VOICES FROM THE PAST
CHORUS: SEARCH NOW WITHIN
VICTOR: CALLING ME TO WAKEN AND REDEEM MYSELF AT LAST
CHORUS: THERE IT BEGINS
VICTOR: AND I MUST NOT FAIL, FOLLOWING THIS TRAILSOMEHOW MUST DELIVER ME BEYOND THE ENDLESSSTORM
Finally, VICTOR is confronted by the most chilling vision of all... his MOTHER.
TITLE SLIDE: THE NORWEGIAN SEA.LAT. 67?19’N, LONG. 12?6’E
VICTOR is aboard a ship bound for the Arctic.
SONG: “THE COMING OF THE DAWN”
VICTOR: I HAVE SEARCHED ACROSS THE YEARSFOR A GLIMPSE BEYOND THE TEARSNOT CARING ONCE FOR THOSE I LEFT BEHINDHAVING STRAYED SO FAR FROM HOMEI DESERVE TO STAND ALONEFOR WHILE I CHASED THE SECRETS OF THE NIGHTI NEVER SAW THE BEAUTY IN THE LIGHT
THE SUN THAT NEVER ROSETHE DAWN THAT NEVER CAMEMY MORNING HAS DESERTED MEWITH NO ONE LEFT BUT ME TO BLAMENONE ARE BLIND AS THOSE WHO WILL NOT SEEAND NOW THE LIGHT IS HEREAND EVERYTHING IS CLEARBUT NOW I FEAR THE COMING OF THE DAWNHAS COME TOO LATE FOR ME
IN THE THEATER OF MY MINDTHOUGH THE SHADOWS INTERTWINEIT SEEMED MY EVERY STEP WAS STRONG AND TRUEAND I ACTED JUST FOR ME ON MY STAGE OF FANTASYFOR NO ONE FEARS THE MORNING’S GENTLE BEAMSEXCEPT THE FOOL WHO LIVES INSIDE HIS DREAMS
THE SUN THAT NEVER ROSETHE DAWN THAT NEVER CAMEMY MORNING HAS DESERTED METO BEAR THE DARKNESS OF MY SHAMEREACHING FOR TOMORROW I HAVE LOST TODAYAND NOW THAT ALL THAT’S GRAY IS FADING INTO DAYI ONLY PRAY THE COMING OF THE DAWNHAS COME TO LIGHT THE WAY
IS THIS THE GREAT DISCOV’RY I HAVE AWAITED?IS THIS HOW A MAN IS TRULY CREATED?
THE SUN THAT NEVER ROSETHE DAWN THAT NEVER CAMEWHY DO THE THINGS WE HAVE SEEM PRECIOUSONLY ONCE THEY’VE SLIPPED AWAY?DREAMS OF GLORY HAVE THEIR PRICE TO PAYBUT FAR BEYOND THE NIGHT LIE PROMISES OF LIGHTAND MAYBE WITH THE COMING OF THE DAWNTHERE COMES ANOTHER DAY
MAYBE WITH THE COMING OF THE DAWNTHERE COMES ANOTHER DAY
VICTOR stands in the barren world of snow and ice that is the Arctic. He is near deathand fighting madness as the wind HOWLS fiercely. On another part of the stage, we seethe CREATURE, who watches him from a distance.
CREATURE: IT NEARLY IS DONEA FITTING END AT THE END OF THE WORLD
As the sounds of the ARCTIC continue, we hear VICTOR’s journal writings in voice-over:
VICTOR (V.O.:) September 3rd. I have secured a sled and a team of dogs and enough provisions fortwo weeks. He was seen heading due north just a day before me.
CREATURE: YES... PURSUE ME, CREATORDRINK DEEP THE ELIXIR OF VENGEANCE
The lights and sound suggest a passage of time and ever-worsening conditions. VICTORweakens continually, eventually sinking to the ground.
VICTOR (V.O.:) September 17th. I thought I saw him yesterday. I’m sure of it. But he is always justbeyond my reach.
CREATURE: WITH EACH BREATHHE GROWS WEAKER AND WEAKERHIS HATRED IS DEARER THAN SURVIVAL
VICTOR (V.O.:) October 9th. The last of the dogs has perished. I had nothing left to feed them — ormyself. I will continue on foot. For as long as I can. For as long as I need to.
CREATURE: SOON HE WILL PERISH, DEVOURED BY THIS FROZEN HELL!
The CREATURE begins to move toward VICTOR, but suddenly...
A thunderous RUMBLING is heard, as the ice beneath VICTOR begins to break apart.
Furious that his master plan has been shattered, the CREATURE dashes off into thedarkness...
CAPTAIN WALTON appears. VICTOR now lays aboard Walton’s ship, near death.
WALTON: And that is how I discovered him. I did all I could to save his life. I fed him. I tended to hisills. I listened to his fantastic tale. One night, I entered the cabin where he lay to a sight for whichI cannot find words to describe...
The CREATURE appears, looming menacingly over VICTOR’s bed.
CREATURE: What hope has a being whose creator so desperately wishes to destroy it? That he wouldpursue it... even to his own death?
SONG: “AMEN” (REPRISE)
CREATURE: AT LAST OUR FINAL HOUR IS NIGHWE’LL BOTH ATTAIN WHAT WE’VE SO LONG DESIREDI’LL WATCH YOU BREATHE YOUR LAST AND DIEAND THEN DESTROY MYSELF UPON OUR FUNERAL PYRE
VICTOR / CREATURE: I CANNOT DIE...AND NOR CAN YOU...
OUR END HAS COME!ONE FINAL TASK REMAINS
THE GAME IS DONE!
VICTOR: YES, IT IS TRUE I HUNTED YOUBUT I HAVE COME NOT OUT OF VENGEANCEBUT OF SHAME
With his last ounce of strength, VICTOR rises and grasps the CREATURE’s arm.
VICTOR: I HAVE FOLLOWED YOU TO SEEK YOUR GRACETO FALL UPON YOUR MERCY AND ACCEPT THE BLAMEDAMN THE MAN WHO DOES NOT GIVEHIS ALL TO HELP HIS SON TO LIVEFORGIVE THIS FOOLISH FATHER—
VICTOR collapses into the CREATURE’s arms. Now breathing his last, he looks about,disoriented... fading:
VICTOR: I CAN HEAR... MY NAME...BLACKENED... BY MY CRIME...HAUNTING ME AND TAUNTING AS ITECHOES THROUGH ALL TIME
He looks to the CREATURE one last time and then dies in his arms. The CREATUREgazes on him, as if seeing him for the first time.
CREATURE: WHAT HAVE I DONE? HOW CAN THIS BE?HOW CRUEL THE HAND OF FATETO TAKE TWO SOULS TOO BLIND TO SEEAND GIVE THEM SIGHT TOO LATE
He cradles VICTOR in his arms.
CREATURE: YOUR PEACE HAS COME...YOU’LL SEARCH NO MORESOON I SHALL FOLLOW WHERE YOU GOGO TO SLEEPYOU’RE SAFE WITH MEMAY THE DARKNESS SET US FREE
The CREATURE lifts VICTOR into his arms.
WALTON: He lifted Frankenstein into his arms as if he were his child, and carried him off,disappearing into the ice and darkness. Forever.
WALTON watches the CREATURE carry VICTOR off into the darkness.
WALTON: Captain Robert Walton, in a letter to his sister... November 9th, 1793.