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The Beloved Fraud

The Whistler

The Beloved Fraud

Oct 30 1944




CAST:

ANNOUNCER

THE WHISTLER

EMMA, snobbish, dominant

CONSTANCE, girlish, submissive

DOROTHY, servant

JULIAN, charming rogue





ANNOUNCER: Let every "Go" signal remind you that you do go farther with Signal Gasoline.


MUSIC: HARP GLISSANDO


ANNOUNCER: The Signal Oil Program.


MUSIC: HARP GLISSANDO ... PUNCTUATED BY TWO DRUMBEATS


ANNOUNCER: The Signal Oil Company and your neighborhood Signal dealer bring you another curious story by - THE WHISTLER. Tonight, "The Beloved Fraud."


MUSIC: WHISTLER THEME ... THEN IN BG


WHISTLER: I am the Whistler, and I know many things, for I walk by night. I know many strange tales, many secrets hidden in the hearts of men and women who have stepped into the shadows. Presently, I'll tell you of nameless terrors they dare not speak.


MUSIC: UP AND OUT


ANNOUNCER: In a moment, the Whistler will tell you his gripping story. But first-- Signal Oil Company brings you an urgent message from the War Department. 


Smokeless powder for explosives -- thousands of tons of it -- are needed daily on the battlefronts. But do you know that sixty percent of all smokeless powder is made from pulp wood, the same pulp wood used to make paper? That's why Donald Nelson stated, "The most critical raw material problem facing our war effort today is the shortage of all forest products, including pulp wood." It's why everyone on the home front is being asked to help by cutting down on the use and waste of paper. Uncle Sam suggests that you accept items from the store unwrapped whenever possible. Bring back paper bags for reuse and save every newspaper, magazine, carton, and especially brown wrapping paper for the salvage drive. You see, seven hundred thousand items of war going overseas all need the paper you're being asked to save. Each five-hundred-pound bomb, for instance, takes twelve pounds of paper. So when you save paper, however little it is, you're doing your part to speed vital weapons that will end the war sooner.


And now, the Whistler.


MUSIC: THE SERIES' STANDARD INTRODUCTION ... THEN BEHIND WHISTLER--


WHISTLER: Bitterness, like wine, matures with age. And high on a dismal and wind-swept hill, on the outskirts of a small New England factory town, sits a house in which bitterness is a living thing, a companionable presence. It's an old house -- weather-beaten, run-down -- with perhaps a touch of its own bitterness, a silent lament for splendor long gone. There was a time, back in Nineteen Five, when bitterness was young and splendor was still present, and the Woodford sisters sat in the comfortable parlor before the winter's fire and read poetry to each other: Emma -- graying, commanding, the protector; Constance -- the younger, timid, yielding.


EMMA: (FADES IN, READS, FROM BROWNING'S "THE SWEETNESS OF ENGLAND") 

All poets use the skies, the clouds, the fields,

The happy violets hiding from the roads,

The primroses run down to, carrying gold;

The tangled hedgerows, where the cows push out 

Impatient horns and tolerant, churning mouths

'Twixt dripping ash-boughs, -- hedgerows all alive

With birds and gnats and large white butterflies--

(BREAKS OFF, SHARPLY) Constance?


CONSTANCE: (STARTLED EXCLAMATION) Yes, Emma?


EMMA: Constance, aren't you interested?


CONSTANCE: Yes, Emma.


EMMA: You've always been very receptive to the works of Mrs. Elizabeth Barrett Browning. You seem on edge. What's the matter?


CONSTANCE: Nothing. Nothing really, Emma.


EMMA: Something's the matter. Don't lie to me, Constance. You've been fussing and fretting all day, peeking out the window--


CONSTANCE: Oh, Emma, for pity's sake--


EMMA: (STERNLY) Constance!


CONSTANCE: I'm sorry. But I was only looking out the window. I thought perhaps Mr. Willoughby might be coming by. He usually passes about this time.


EMMA: And why should you be so interested in the mailman? Were you expecting a letter?


CONSTANCE: You know I'm not. You know how seldom anything comes for me. Only once in a while from Aunt Sarah or - somebody like that.


EMMA: Constance, I don't believe you're happy.


CONSTANCE: Happy? Hadn't thought about it. Not that way. I don't know, Emma.


EMMA: After all I've tried to do for you.


CONSTANCE: Yes, I know, Emma. Oh, please don't think me ungrateful. You've been wonderful.


EMMA: I've been a mother to you, Constance, ever since dear Mama left us.


CONSTANCE: I know, I know.


EMMA: And now you tell me you're not happy here -- act bored and fidgety -- almost like I was keeping you prisoner. Always wanting to go out.


CONSTANCE: But if only we went out just once in a while. If only for a walk in the village--


EMMA: It's not a fit place for ladies to walk unescorted.


CONSTANCE: No, I suppose not. But we never have anyone to escort us -- ever. And there's-- (GETS AN IDEA) Emma! Perhaps old Mr. Willoughby would escort us to the village sometime.


EMMA: Constance, have you lost your mind? A postman!


CONSTANCE: But he's a very nice old gentleman. He's the only person I ever see except Dorothy. And I like him.


EMMA: (INSULTED) The only people you ever see. The postman and our housekeeper. And what about me?


CONSTANCE: Oh, you. Of course you, Emma. I always see you.


EMMA: But you'd rather be with the others. Oh, yes, don't think I don't know how Dorothy brings you tea in your room and sits and talks -- a common housekeeper.


CONSTANCE: But she's very nice, Emma, and genteel, too; you said so yourself when you hired her. A good family, you said, not like a servant at all.


EMMA: But she is a servant now, Constance. Our servant. I've heard you laughing when you thought I wasn't around.


CONSTANCE: (TEARFUL) But why shouldn't we laugh a little? Why shouldn't people laugh and have fun; be happy? (WEEPS) Oh, Emma! (WEEPS, IN BG)


EMMA: There, there. Now, don't cry, dear. Of course you should be happy. That's what I've tried to do for you. 


CONSTANCE: I know.


EMMA: Because I love you, my dear, and because I promised Mama that I'd look after you, make a home for you.


CONSTANCE: I know. I'm sorry to be so hateful, Emma. You know I appreciate what you've done.


EMMA: Well, let's say no more about this now, dear. You run up to your room and dry your tears. I'll have Dorothy bring up a warm cup of tea. And then you and she can have your talk. (BEAT) You'd probably planned on that anyway.


CONSTANCE: Oh, Emma, don't be angry about Dorothy. It's not that I enjoy her more than you, honestly. It's - it's just that she tells me things. Things about the outside, the city, the world, people. I like that.


EMMA: You're tired of your home here, aren't you, Constance?


CONSTANCE: No, Emma, I'm not. It's a very nice home; I know that. Only, I had hoped that I might see the city, go on a holiday, a little trip or something. But you always say no.


EMMA: Yes, dear, I always say no. (BEAT) And I know what's best for you.


MUSIC: BRIDGE ... THEN BEHIND WHISTLER--


WHISTLER: Yes, sister Emma knows best, Constance. She's always known best. And before her, it was dear Mama whom she adored. You should be grateful to have someone else looking out for you, taking care of you, running your life for you. But you're not, are you, Constance? You're unhappy -- desperately unhappy.


CONSTANCE: (WEEPS QUIETLY, IN BG)


SOUND: DOOR OPENS ... DOROTHY'S STEPS IN ... RATTLE OF TEA TRAY


DOROTHY: Here you are, Miss Constance. Some nice hot tea.


CONSTANCE: Oh. Oh, thank you, Dorothy. 


DOROTHY: There, there, there, dear. Now you mustn't carry on so. Crying spoils your pretty eyes.


CONSTANCE: Oh, Dorothy, what am I to do?


DOROTHY: Do? There's precious little you can do -- with her running you like you didn't have a mind of your own.


CONSTANCE: But I do have a mind of my own. I'm not a child.


DOROTHY: Of course you're not. You're a grown woman. And you're not getting any younger. If ever you're going to get out of here and find happiness, you'll have to do it soon.


CONSTANCE: I know. I know. Perhaps it's too late now. That's what I keep telling myself.


DOROTHY: Too late? Fiddlesticks. You're only thirty-five. And there are plenty of gentlemen who'd find you very attractive.


CONSTANCE: Do you think so, Dorothy? Do you really think so?


DOROTHY: Of course I do. If ever she'd let you go into town by yourself, you'd see. The men would stare.


CONSTANCE: Oh, Dorothy, we shouldn't talk like this. What would Emma say?


DOROTHY: She'd say it was wicked, no doubt, because she hates men. Why, I don't know. But she's wrong. Why should it be wicked for a woman to want the men to notice her? It's natural. Every woman should have the attentions of a man, fall in love, get married.


CONSTANCE: Do you really think so, Dorothy?


DOROTHY: Of course. And you'll find one yet, don't you worry.


CONSTANCE: Oh, it's not that. I've never thought really and truly about getting married or anything like that. Never seemed that I was meant for anything like that. But just to meet people -- other women, and men. See something besides the insides of this house.


DOROTHY: Oh, I know, I know, and you shall. Why shouldn't you leave her and live your own life?


CONSTANCE: But she'd never let me do it. She's so strong and she'd find a way to stop me, bring me back.


DOROTHY: Perhaps I can help you.


SOUND: TEACUP SET DOWN ON TRAY


CONSTANCE: (SURPRISED) You, Dorothy?


DOROTHY: Yes, Miss Constance. What you need is a man. A man who will come and take you out of here. Then Emma would have nothing to say about it.


CONSTANCE: But where? Where would I meet a man? No one ever comes here.


DOROTHY: Perhaps one will -- if we work it right.


CONSTANCE: What do you mean, Dorothy?


DOROTHY: I have a cousin. He's a fine man, a widower, and just the type for you. I'm sure you and he would find each other very interesting.


CONSTANCE: But does he live here? In the village?


DOROTHY: No. No, he lives in New York.


CONSTANCE: In New York? The city?


DOROTHY: Mm hm.


CONSTANCE: Oh, but, Dorothy, how will I ever meet him?


DOROTHY: By letter. I'll write and tell him about you, give him your permission to write. You'll have many things to say to each other. And perhaps-- Who knows what may come of it?


MUSIC: BRIDGE ... THEN BEHIND WHISTLER--


WHISTLER: And that was the beginning, wasn't it, Constance? Remember how you waited for his first letter -- half afraid that it would come, half fearful that it wouldn't? And then how you hid it until Emma had gone to bed? And then pored over every word again and again until after dawn? In a later one, he sent you his picture; Julian, handsome, a trifle slick-looking, not like the country men in the village. You sent him your picture and told Emma you'd misplaced it. And then, after months, came the letter asking you to marry him, telling you he was coming to the village to get you. And the last letter that day. You read it in the grape arbor and came running in to tell Dorothy.


SOUND: DOOR CLOSES ... CONSTANCE'S HURRIED FOOTSTEPS IN


CONSTANCE: (APPROACHES, EXCITED) Dorothy! Dorothy!


EMMA: (DISAPPROVING, SHARPLY) Constance! Such noise!


CONSTANCE: (SURPRISED) Emma! Oh, I thought you'd gone down to the grocer's.


EMMA: And this is the way you behave behind my back? What do you have there, Constance; a letter?


CONSTANCE: Why-- Oh, yes.


EMMA: Oh? Well, I suppose it's from Aunt Sarah. Come in and read it to me.


CONSTANCE: (BEAT) I can't, Emma.


EMMA: What do you mean, you can't?


CONSTANCE: It's personal.


EMMA: Personal? Do you know what you're saying? We have no secrets from one another. We never have. I always read you my letters.


CONSTANCE: But this is personal. I can't read it to you.


EMMA: Constance, you're acting very strangely. Let me see that letter.


CONSTANCE: No! No!


EMMA: You're hiding something from me. (WITH EFFORT) Let me see it.


CONSTANCE: (IN PAIN) Don't--! You're hurting my arm!


EMMA: (BEAT, EXHALES; SUDDENLY ACTS WOUNDED, BUT CLEARLY MANIPULATIVE; SLOWLY) Constance-- Baby-- What have I done that you should treat me this way? Haven't I always thought of you -- always -- before myself? And now you tell me you have something private and personal. Between us.


CONSTANCE: Oh, I'm sorry, Emma. I didn't mean to hurt you, really. But-- Well, I suppose I might as well tell you now; you'll know soon enough. He's coming here tonight.


EMMA: He? What are you talking about, Constance?


CONSTANCE: Julian -- my friend. This is his letter telling me he will be here tonight.


EMMA: You've written to a strange man behind my back?


CONSTANCE: Nothing wrong with it. We've just exchanged letters. Such nice letters! He's told me such wonderful, interesting things about life in the city--


EMMA: Constance, how could you do anything so sinful?


CONSTANCE: Please try to understand, Emma. Perhaps you're satisfied to stay here in this old house all your life, but I'm young and I have a right to some happiness! I want to get out! To live!


EMMA: So -- this creature wants to take you away. After all I've done for you! Grown old caring for you, giving up everything for you!


CONSTANCE: No, Emma, you've given up nothing. Everything is just the way you want it. You keep saying that you've taken care of me for Mama, but you're not. You're keeping me tied here, trying to make me give up everything for you. And I can't do it! Not any longer, Emma! If Julian will take me, I will go away with him! I will marry him!


EMMA: Who is this man? How did you meet him?


CONSTANCE: He's Dorothy's cousin. She told him to write.


EMMA: (WITH DISGUST) The relative of our servant!


CONSTANCE: You said yourself she came from a good family. He - he's just as good as anybody. (INSISTS) He's wonderful!


EMMA: What do you know about him?


CONSTANCE: Everything! He's been writing regularly for six months. He's told me everything!


EMMA: You fool. You fool! Why do you suppose a man like that would want to marry a country girl, thirty-five, like you? Don't you see he's after your money? Dorothy's told him that you have money Mama left you. That's all he's after.


CONSTANCE: That's not true!


EMMA: Oh, isn't it? Well, you'll never get the chance to find out because you'll not go off with him!


CONSTANCE: I'm through obeying you, Emma. I shall go with Julian -- tonight.


EMMA: (BEAT) We'll see about that, Constance. We'll see!


MUSIC: CURTAIN


ANNOUNCER: You're listening to THE WHISTLER, brought to you by your friend, the Signal Oil Company, marketers of famous Signal Gasoline, your best buy today. Remember to let every "Go" signal remind you, you do go farther with Signal Gasoline.


MUSIC: WHISTLER THEME ... THEN BEHIND WHISTLER--


WHISTLER: Well, Constance, the time has come at last. Julian will be here soon and you've told Emma that you're leaving. Can she stop you? Can she carry out her threat to keep you here? Perhaps the only answer to that is Julian. And, at last, after dinner, he's here.


DOROTHY: Here is Julian, Miss Constance.


JULIAN: (APPROACHES, WARMLY) Constance!


CONSTANCE: (RELIEVED) Oh! Julian! (SHYLY) Come in. Do come in.


SOUND: JULIAN'S FOOTSTEPS BEHIND--


JULIAN: Constance! So at last we meet -- face to face.


CONSTANCE: Yes. I hope it's not a disappointment.


JULIAN: Disappointment? Anything but that. You're just as I expected you to be. And what about me?


CONSTANCE: (LOVINGLY) Oh, yes. You're just as I expected you'd be.


JULIAN: But I interrupted something. You were tending the fire?


CONSTANCE: No, I-- I - I was burning your letters.


JULIAN: Then you've regretted your decision, Constance?


CONSTANCE: No, Julian.


JULIAN: Then why?


CONSTANCE: I warned you. It's Emma. She wants to stop us. She's upstairs hunting for these letters now.


JULIAN: We shall leave anyway. She can't stop us.


CONSTANCE: But she'll do everything she can. She'll stop at nothing. Some fiendish power I don't understand impels her.


EMMA: (APPROACHES) Yes, Constance, go on.


CONSTANCE: (WHISPERS, NERVOUS) Julian!


JULIAN: (SLOWLY, IMPOSINGLY) You are Emma?


EMMA: I am Constance's sister.


JULIAN: (FIRMLY) Constance, if you haven't already done so, go pack your bags.


CONSTANCE: (LOW) I haven't packed. She would have seen and asked questions. I'll - I'll hurry.


SOUND: CONSTANCE'S HURRIED FOOTSTEPS START OFF


EMMA: (STERNLY) Come back here, Constance!


SOUND: CONSTANCE'S FOOTSTEPS STOP AND RETURN SLOWLY


CONSTANCE: (APPROACHES) What do you want? What?


EMMA: (REASONABLY) I want to talk to you once more. You must listen to me. This man does not love you, I know. Don't be a fool. Don't risk everything on this sudden wild impulse. Think of me. How lonely I'll be. This man wants your money. And what do you think he'll do with you when he finds you have none?


CONSTANCE: But I do, Emma. Half of what Mama and Papa left is mine.


EMMA: Yes, but I have control of it. You don't even know where it's kept. Did you think I would just give it to you?


CONSTANCE: I don't care about the money and neither does Julian. (MOVING OFF) I'm going to pack; I won't be long.


SOUND: CONSTANCE'S HURRIED FOOTSTEPS AWAY


EMMA: You'll only have to unpack, Constance.


JULIAN: Constance and I are to be married, Miss Emma, with or without sisterly approval.


EMMA: I understand that to be your intention.


JULIAN: Surely you can have no objections. She's not a child. She's thirty.


EMMA: Thirty-five.


JULIAN: Thirty-five?


EMMA: Yes. Constance has never been very practical or serious-minded. When Mama and Papa were killed in a train wreck many years ago, I realized Constance was in my charge; that it was my duty to shield her from the ills of the world.


JULIAN: I believe I understood you to say Miss Constance has no control over her money.


EMMA: You understood correctly.


JULIAN: Well-- (EXHALES) I'm not poor. Oh, far from it. But of late I've suffered some reverses and--


EMMA: Constance will have no money. Unless I give it to her.


JULIAN: (BEAT, TURNS ON THE CHARM; SLOWLY) Do you know? I admire a woman like you. I admire your strength. Your practicality.


EMMA: (SKEPTICAL) Really?


JULIAN: And now, Miss Emma, that I've come face to face with you and your sister, it seems to me --- that you're strikingly the more admirable of the two.


EMMA: Just what are you implying?


JULIAN: That perhaps I was being too hasty. Perhaps if I were to think this over-- You know, Miss Emma, you, too, have a right to a man's protection. And a man's love.


EMMA: (DISGUSTED, QUIETLY) You filthy beast. I've never asked for a man's love or a man's protection and I never shall. I shall have to advise Constance of this interesting deviation in character and this sudden change of affection. And, as for you, leave this house.


JULIAN: I shall leave. But Constance comes with me. Now, understand, I have not the slightest interest in your sister -- especially now. But just because you're so dead set on keeping her here with you, I'm going to take her with me. Course, I may drop her like a hot penny in a few weeks, but-- (BEAT, STARTLED, FLUSTERED) Why-- Why, Constance-- Pigeon-- (DESPERATELY) Whatever you heard, don't you believe a word of it. 


SOUND: JULIAN'S SLOW FOOTSTEPS TO CONSTANCE BEHIND--


JULIAN: (FEIGNED LIGHTNESS) I - I was just teasing your sister here, the old pill. I-- Why, I'm crazy about you, girl; you know that.


CONSTANCE: (QUIETLY FURIOUS) Don't you come near. Don't you dare.


JULIAN: Why, Constance-- After all the sweet endearing things you said in your letters--


CONSTANCE: (EXPLODES) Get out of this house!


JULIAN: (DROPS THE ACT) Say, who do you think you're talking to in that tone of voice?


CONSTANCE: You'd better leave.


JULIAN: (CHARMING) No. No, I think I'll stay and sit a spell. Who's to know there's a gentleman paying a call way out here on the edge of town? (OMINOUS) Who's to know what's going on out here?


CONSTANCE: Julian, I packed more than clothes in these grips.


SOUND: SUITCASE UNLATCHED AND OPENED


CONSTANCE: As you can see. You are not staying in this house!


JULIAN: (NERVOUS) Hey-- Hey, lady-- Put - put down that revolver. Firearms are dangerous things to be handling, especially for a woman. It - it might go off.


CONSTANCE: (COOLLY) You're right!


EMMA: (SLIGHTLY OFF, SCARED) Constance, be careful!


JULIAN: Well, turn it in some other direction then.


CONSTANCE: I like the way it's facing!


JULIAN: (DESPERATELY) Look-- Now, ladies, I was only fooling. Just - trying to give you a bit of sport, that's all. To liven up a dull winter evening, that's all.


CONSTANCE: Good night!


JULIAN: (EXHALES, GIVES UP, TO HIMSELF) I never saw such people. Talk about your New England hospitality. Must've been invented by someone who was never in New England.


SOUND: JULIAN'S FOOTSTEPS WALK TO DOOR BEHIND--


JULIAN: (MOVING OFF) Well, good night, ladies. It's been downright charming.


SOUND: FRONT DOOR OPENS ... JULIAN EXITS ... DOOR CLOSES


EMMA: (RELIEVED, DEEPLY IMPRESSED) Oh, Constance! Constance, you were wonderful! I never thought you could be so brave, standing right up to that big bully. Oh, that was so clever of you, bringing down Papa's old revolver. And so brave! How could you do it?


CONSTANCE: (WEAKLY) Oh, my heart.


EMMA: (SOLICITOUS) Constance, sit down, dear. Please do.


CONSTANCE: (SIGHS AS SHE SINKS INTO CHAIR)


EMMA: There. Oh, if anything should happen to you, I don't know what I'd do.


CONSTANCE: (EXHALES, STILL WEAK) I'm all right. (BEAT) Emma?


EMMA: Yes, dear?


CONSTANCE: (SLOWLY) Emma, why won't you allow me to have my own banking account? I promise you I won't be extravagant. It's just that I would feel more of an adult -- a person in my own right -- if I knew I could have access to my money, if I did want it.


EMMA: Constance, you were so brave and so forceful. Of course I shall see that you have access to your own money. You saved my life.


CONSTANCE: Then you will let me have - my own account?


EMMA: (LEVELS WITH HER) The money isn't in the bank, Constance.


CONSTANCE: It's not?


EMMA: No. It's right here. Right in the house. I wouldn't trust the bank; there might be a run on it someday.


CONSTANCE: (ASTONISHED) Julian might have searched the house -- taken it all.


EMMA: I know. I was frightened to death. Your facing him with the revolver was the only thing that saved us. But I have the money well-hidden. In a safe, behind this picture of dear Mama. And only I know the combination.


CONSTANCE: I never knew there was a safe there.


EMMA: Come, I'll show you.


MUSIC: BRIDGE ... THEN BEHIND WHISTLER--


WHISTLER: Emma, relieved of her fright, is more human than you've ever seen her, isn't she, Constance? She seems really happy as she goes to the safe and opens it.


SOUND: FOOTSTEPS TO SAFE DOOR WHICH SQUEAKS OPEN


EMMA: There it is. All there.


CONSTANCE: (BIG INHALE, IN AWE) 


EMMA: You didn't know we were so wealthy, did you, little sister?


CONSTANCE: How much is it, Emma?


EMMA: At my last count, it was a little over two hundred and fifty thousand dollars, including the bonds. Mama was so wise. She made Papa invest in only the safest things. So you see, dear--


SOUND: JULIAN'S FOOTSTEPS APPROACH BEHIND--


JULIAN: (APPROACHES) All right, ladies, if you'll just hand over the contents of that safe.


EMMA: You! Julian!


JULIAN: I availed myself of your servants' entrance, Miss Emma. Informal, but practical.


EMMA: Constance, the revolver there on the floor! Get the revolver!


SOUND: IN AGREEMENT WITH FOLLOWING, JULIAN'S STEPS, LUNGING FOR AND PICKING UP THE REVOLVER


JULIAN: (WITH EFFORT) I - have the revolver now. (COOLLY TRIUMPHANT) Now it is my turn to give directions. Back against the wall and let's not have a sound from you. Don't know who'd hear you way out here if you did yell.


EMMA: (DESPERATELY) Constance, do something. Don't let him take our money. What'll happen to us? That's our security! Our future, our happiness!


CONSTANCE: My security! My future and happiness, Emma. Don't worry, he's only taking my half.


EMMA: What do you mean?


CONSTANCE: Julian and I planned the whole thing. Only, we didn't know it was going to be this easy. I thought I had to draw the money out of the bank. It's much simpler this way.


EMMA: What are you saying, Constance? You can't know what you're saying.


CONSTANCE: Oh, yes, I do know! I thought it would take a fright to make you part with my money. Well, I wrote Julian it would be a battle and he suggested this little plot. You were happy, weren't you, Emma, when you thought Julian a thief and a raffer. You were gloating inside because you thought everything you had said was true!


EMMA: Constance, you must be out of your mind.


CONSTANCE: Julian and I are going to travel all over the world! I'm going to live at last! I'm going to see things!


EMMA: The Lord'll punish you, Constance.


CONSTANCE: Oh, I've had my share of punishment, Emma. All the long, rotten years I've had to spend with you!


JULIAN: (SMOOTHLY) I have your grips and the money, Constance. Shall we leave?


CONSTANCE: Yes! Yes, Julian.


JULIAN: Goodbye again, Miss Emma.


SOUND: JULIAN'S FOOTSTEPS AWAY BEHIND--


EMMA: (WITH DISGUST) You vile, unspeakable man. (TO CONSTANCE) You vile, unspeakable woman! (DELIBERATELY) Oh, you'll be sorry, Constance. You'll regret this to the end of your days. I shall hate you. Hate you forever and ever. My hate will reach out for you wherever you are; you'll never be happy!


CONSTANCE: Goodbye, Emma.


SOUND: CONSTANCE'S HURRIED FOOTSTEPS TO DOOR


EMMA: Constance!


SOUND: CONSTANCE EXITS ... DOOR SLAMS SHUT


EMMA: (BROKENLY) Constance, how could you?


DOROTHY: (BEAT, OFF) Miss Emma? Have they gone?


SOUND: DOROTHY'S STEPS APPROACH BEHIND--


EMMA: You! You're the cause of this! After I gave you a home, a job, companionship; you did this to me! I could kill you!


DOROTHY: No. No, Miss Emma. Calm yourself.


EMMA: You took her away from me. You're responsible for me being left alone to live out a miserable lonely old age!


DOROTHY: No. Stop looking at me like that. She'll be back.


EMMA: Back? She'll never-- (DOUBLE TAKE) What did you say?


DOROTHY: (REALIZES SHE'S SAID TOO MUCH) I - I--


EMMA: Why are you so sure she'll be back? You know something more about this, don't you?


DOROTHY: (LYING) Why-- No, Miss Emma. No.


EMMA: You do! What do you know, Dorothy? Why should Constance come back if she's got the money?


DOROTHY: I don't know. Only, you said yourself that he might take the money from her.


EMMA: But he's your cousin, Dorothy. You must know him well. Therefore you must know he is going to take the money and leave her penniless, to come shrinking back to me. Don't you, Dorothy? (NO ANSWER) Don't you?!


DOROTHY: All right. Yes, I do. We planned it that way. And I'm not sorry. It's what the two of you deserve. What good was it doing you? Either of you? It'll help Julian and me to really live again. 


EMMA: So you're going to get part of it, too?


DOROTHY: Yes. Yes. And it's only what I deserve after what I've put up with from you. And there's nothing you can do about it now. They're already on their way to the city -- to be married.


EMMA: (DURING ABOVE, STARTS LAUGHING HYSTERICALLY)


DOROTHY: (PUZZLED) What--? What are you laughing at?


EMMA: (HYSTERICAL) You! You, Dorothy. You think I'm angry at you! You think I want to stop you! Nooo! Take the money; I'm glad, do you hear? Take it! You're welcome to it! Because now Constance will be back. She'll be penniless. Take the money! I'll have Constance back! (LAUGHS) I'll have Constance back! (LAUGHS)


MUSIC: CURTAIN


ANNOUNCER: But that's not all of this strange story. In a moment, the Whistler will be back to tell you what really happened. 


And while we're waiting, here's the modern version of that old story about the lost horseshoe nail. Just one nail. But, for lack of it, the shoe was lost, then the horse, the rider -- and, as a result, the battle was lost. Well, this year, Uncle Sam says one out of every twelve cars will be lost; that is, go off the road. Many of them because just one vital part has worn out, which can't be replaced today. That's why your Signal dealer takes no chances of missing even one part when he lubricates your car. It's why he uses the famous Signal Safety Chart, on which the maker of your particular car has indicated every lubrication point and the exact oil or grease it should have. Before your Signal dealer returns your car to you, he checks every point against the safety chart -- not just once, but twice. This double protection is Signal's way of assuring you that your car won't be the one one-in-twelve that goes off the road because some vital part wore out from lack of lubrication. So if it's been a thousand miles or two months since last lubrication, play safe. See your neighborhood Signal dealer for a Signal Safety Chart lubrication.


And now, back to THE WHISTLER.


MUSIC: TAG ... THEN BEHIND WHISTLER--


WHISTLER: Yes, Emma sat in the lonely old house and waited, nursing her bitterness, and down in the city at a small hotel, Julian stood at the desk, waiting for his bride and -- her money. Constance was upstairs dressing for the wedding. It was scheduled to take place at the little church just around the corner within the hour. As the minutes went by and the time grew short, Julian became impatient. He went upstairs to the room looking for Constance. She wasn't there. On the table he found a note.


JULIAN: (READS, SLOWLY, UNHAPPILY) Dear Julian, I'm sorry to disappoint you, but, you see, I knew all along what you really wanted from me. I suppose it was deceitful to let you believe you were succeeding, but I needed your help to gain my freedom. Now that I have it -- and the money -- I thank you and wish you good luck. Goodbye, Constance.


WHISTLER: Julian knew what that meant. And, after a time, so did Emma, sitting alone in the old house on the hill.


MUSIC: TWO DRUMBEATS FOR PUNCTUATION ... THEN WHISTLER THEME ... THEN IN BG, UNTIL END  


ANNOUNCER: Next Monday night at nine o'clock, the Signal Oil Company will bring you another strange tale by THE WHISTLER, the curious tale of "The Twins." The Signal Oil program is broadcast for your entertainment by the Signal Oil Company, makers of Signal's famous Go Farther Gasoline and Motor Oil and by your neighborhood Signal Oil dealer who is at your service daily to keep your car running for the duration. The Signal Oil program, produced and directed by George W. Allen, with story by Victor Kushner and music by Wilbur Hatch, is transmitted to our troops overseas by the Armed Forces Radio Service. Bob Anderson speaking for your friend, the Signal Oil Company, and suggesting once again that you let every "Go" signal remind you that you do go farther with Signal Gasoline. This is CBS, the Columbia Broadcasting System.


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