Galadriel and Grimlock

[GALADRIEL, a beautiful, elegantly clothed young woman, lounges on an enormous, satin-covered, gold-embossed, delicately sculptured bed. The room is furnished by similarly obscene couches, shelves, desks and chairs. TRISTIAN, a behemoth guard, stands in the shadows.

GALADRIEL is reading a rather large tome. After a few moments, she becomes dissatisfied with it, puts it down, and goes to the shelf and chooses another one.]

GALADRIEL: The Shadow, by Hans Christian Andersen.

[She begins to read. A few moments later, there is a knock at her door.]

GALADRIEL: Who is it?

GRIMLOCK [off stage]: It is I, my dear.

GALADRIEL [leaping off the bed and running to the door]: Oh, my darling Grimlock!

[She runs to the door and opens it. Enter GRIMLOCK, clad in grays and blacks. He is shivering.]

GALADRIEL: You are shivering! [scolding] You must not get sick this evening, not the night before the wedding.

GRIMLOCK: I am sorry, my love, my own one. I have just had the most horrible experience that a man can have. My shadow, my dearest shadow, to whom I have given his own life—he has gone mad, grown diabolical! He tells me tonight the truth, the belief that he has harbored these many years. He believes that he is the man and that I... that I am his shadow!

GALADRIEL: How dreadful!

GRIMLOCK: Yes, it is a cursed turn of events. I am vexed beyond reason. What am I to do?

GALADRIEL: I have been often told that I have clear sight, so I will attempt to advise. But first I must ask you a question.

GRIMLOCK: Anything you wish to know.

GALADRIEL: Is it true?

GRIMLOCK [pause]: What was that?

GALADRIEL: I asked you if it is true. Are you a shadow?

GRIMLOCK [aghast]: Darling, how could you think such a thing?

GALADRIEL: You dress as a shadow might.


GALADRIEL: You dance as a shadow should.

GRIMLOCK: My dear...

GALADRIEL: You roam freely as a shadow would.

GRIMLOCK: Darling...

GALADRIEL: You know a world of darkness that only a shadow could.

GRIMLOCK: Beloved!

GALADRIEL: And you have no shadow of your own.

[There is a long pause.]

GRIMLOCK [cold and formal]: Galadriel, I explained that to you. To win my way into your heart I had to appear different than other men—more rich, more generous, more thoughtful, more loving. So I severed my shadow from myself and gave him the gift of life as well as a shadow of his own. How expensive it was! And how taxing to find the wizards who could do such a thing! But it worked, and you looked upon me with interest, which made it worth every farthing. Ever since, I have walked without a shadow, as a mark of my wealth, my beneficence, my originality and my kind-heartedness. [pause] And now you accuse me of usurping my shadow's humanity.

GALADRIEL [pauses; then smiles at him]: My love, my love. Do you think I would distrust you so? Believe your every word to be false?

GRIMLOCK: You didn't?

GALADRIEL: No, I didn't. These discrepancies I point out are in all stories. They come from our very lives. Shall I distrust you, my only love for such a reason? Of course not. Now, be a dear and tell me—he's not running around loose, is he?

GRIMLOCK: No, no, he isn't. I'm so afraid he will never get well.

GALADRIEL: Poor shadow. He must be suffering terribly. Delusions promote dishonesty, and dishonesty eats ones soul from the inside out. It would really be kinder to free him from that particle of life that he has, so that he is not destroyed by the vast vistas he has not. He is a shadow. Shadow's cannot delight, cannot rejoice, cannot embrace, and most of all, cannot love. These shortcomings would cause insanity in any man, and will most certainly do the same on a mere shadow. Yes, the more I think about it, the more convinced I am that it's necessary for him to be done away with.

GRIMLOCK [gulps]: It seems... it seems so cruel. How loyal a servant he was! [pause] Is there no other recourse?

GALADRIEL: How noble you are! But I can think of none. My darling, my love, we can have no shadows in our midst.

GRIMLOCK: But perhaps he can be cured? Perhaps he can again realize his humanity?

GALADRIEL: Grimlock, it cannot be. Our land is a land of sun and bright colors, of happiness and mirth. It cannot stand much longer its shadiest subject.

GRIMLOCK: Perhaps then we could expel him? He and I have been together for some time—I will be sad to see him go...

GALADRIEL: Exiling a subject takes time; it requires bureaucracy and paperwork. He will still be at the glorious wedding tomorrow, and there his presence cannot be tolerated. No, my decision is final. The shadow will die.

GRIMLOCK: Galadriel...

GALADRIEL: Tristian, see him out.

GRIMLOCK: Galadriel—I can love you. I do—I love you.

GALADRIEL: Good night, Grimlock. Pleasant dreams.

[TRISTIAN gently guides GRIMLOCK to the door. GRIMLOCK leaves. TRISTIAN returns to his previous position.]

GALADRIEL: Now where was I? Ah, yes. "On the shores of the Mediterranean, the sun really knows how to shine." Tristian, haven't you always loved that opening line?


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