Monday, 19 November 2018

Honour Court

You break my heart, son.
All my life I stood up... to everyone
and everything... because it made me feel important.
You do it 'cause you mean it.

You got integrity, Charlie.

I don't know whether to shoot ya or adopt ya.

On major holidays, Willis, it's customary for the Lord of The Manor... to offer drippings to the poor

He dreamed that he stood in a shadowy Court,

Where the Snark, with a glass in its eye,

Dressed in gown, bands, and wig, was defending a pig

On the charge of deserting its sty.

The Witnesses proved, without error or flaw,

That the sty was deserted when found:

And the Judge kept explaining the state of the law

In a soft under-current of sound.

The indictment had never been clearly expressed,

And it seemed that the Snark had begun,

And had spoken three hours, before any one guessed

What the pig was supposed to have done.

The Jury had each formed a different view

(Long before the indictment was read),

And they all spoke at once, so that none of them knew

One word that the others had said.

"You must know —" said the Judge: but the Snark exclaimed "Fudge!

That statute is obsolete quite!

Let me tell you, my friends, the whole question depends

On an ancient manorial right.

Matron: [the Matron opens up the door to the girls' room] 

Welcome back, girls. 

Poppy: [realising help is there to wash her clothes] 

Oh, good, staff! How quickly can you get all this stuff cleaned? 

Matron: [realising who she is] Is she...? 

Josie: [nodding] 

Mm-hm. American. 

Matron: [realising about the Americans once at the school] 

Oh, yes. We had one of those in 1997. 

[looking at Poppy] 


Not good. 

[Poppy whines about her clothes] 

Matron: [to the girls] 

Accustom her to my rules 

[noticing Poppy in her casual clothes] 


and she should be in the correct uniform for a start! 

[collecting the mobile phones] 

Matron: Mobile phones, please, girls! 

[Kiki, Drippy, Kate and Josie put in their phones, unaware they are decoys and don't work] 


Thank you Kiki, thank you Josie. Thank you Kate! 


[the Matron proceeds in confiscating the phones and takes both of Poppy's phones] 

Whoa! Hands off, mama! I said, "Hands OFF!" 

[speaking Spanish] 


Hablas Espanol? 

[Poppy attempts to speak Italian] 

Poppy: Posito Italiano? 

Matron: [offended]

I am Scottish, not remedial! 

Poppy: [glad the Matron understood her] 

Good, then you understand! 

[Poppy dumps her wet clothes into the phone confiscation tray] 


Line dry, press, no starch, and no creases! 


[really shocked and appalled at Poppy's behaviour] 

How dare you! No mufti for a week! 

[walking away] 

Poppy: [doesn't know what she meant] 

Fine! Mufti may be your thing, lady, but it sure ain't mine! 

Kiki: [correcting Poppy] 

She means no home clothes for a week! 

Poppy: [scoffing] 

Like I give a shit! 

[Matron gasps] 


I'll be gone by then! 

Matron: [shocked by Poppy's language] 


[turning to the girls] 


Two Sundays detention. For the whole dorm! 

[the girls groan] 

Poppy: [to the girls] Look, I'll deal with this. 

[to Matron] 

Poppy: Look, hey! Hey! 

[Matron grunts "Huh"?] 

Poppy: [Poppy shows the Matron a green money note] Here's a Ben Franklin. Why don't you go out and buy yourself... 

[looking at the Matron's clothes] 

Poppy: well, anything! 

[drops the money into the phone tray] 

Poppy: Whatever you get will be a *serious* improvement! 

Matron: [to the girls] *Three* Sundays! 

[turning to them] 

Matron: For everyone! 

[the girls groan loudly, as the Matron leaves, and turn to Poppy angry] 

Josie: Thanks a lot for that! You utter moron! 

Drippy: What are you, mental? 

Poppy: What? She was a grade-1 a-hole with a *severe* attitudinal problem! 

Kate: [had enough with Poppy's nonsense] 

The bell's going in a minute. Just put your uniform on! 

[Poppy scoffs. The bell suddenly rings] 

Kate/Drippy/Kiki/Josie: [in unison, yelling at Poppy] NOW!

[last lines] 

Todd Anderson: [stands up on his desk] 

O Captain! My Captain! 

Mr. Nolan: 

Sit down, Mr. Anderson! Do you hear me? Sit down! Sit down! This is your final warning, Anderson. How dare you? Do you hear me? 

Knox Overstreet:  

[climbs up onto his desk] 

O Captain! My Captain! 

Mr. Nolan: Mr. Overstreet, I warn you! Sit down! 

[Pitts climbs onto his desk, followed by Meeks, then over half the class, one by one] 

Mr. Nolan: 

Sit down! Sit down. All of you. I want you seated. Sit down. Leave, Mr. Keating. All of you, down. I want you seated. Do you hear me? Sit down! 

John Keating: 

Thank you, boys. Thank you.

[Charlie refused to come clean with the names of the students responsible for the prank; Mr. Trask is furious] 

Mr. Trask: [furious] 

I am left with no real witness. Mr. Willis's testimony is not only vague, it is unsubstantiated. The substance I was looking for, Mr. Simms, was to come from you. 

Charlie Simms: [remorseful] 

I'm sorry. 

Mr. Trask: 

I'm sorry too, Mr. Simms, because you know what I am going to do. In as much as I can't punish Mr. Havemeyer, Mr. Potter, or Mr. Jameson, and I won't punish Mr. Willis. He's the only party to this incident who is still worthy of calling himself a Baird man. I'm going to recommend to the disciplinary committee that you be expelled. Mr. Simms, you are a cover-up artist and you are a liar. 

Lt. Col. Frank Slade: 

But not a SNITCH. 

Mr. Trask: 

Excuse me? 

Lt. Col. Frank Slade: 

No, I don't think I will. 

Mr. Trask: 

Mr. Slade... 

Lt. Col. Frank Slade: 

This is such a crock of SHIT. 

Mr. Trask: 

Please watch your language, Mr. Slade. You are in the Baird School, not a barracks. Mr Simms, I will give you one last opportunity to speak up. 

Lt. Col. Frank Slade: 

Mr. Simms doesn't want it. He desn't need to labeled, "Still worthy of being a Baird man". What the hell is that? What is your motto here? "Boys, inform on your classmates, save your hide. Anything short of that, we're gonna burn you at the stake"? Well, gentlemen, when the shit hits the fan, some guys run and some guys stay. Here's Charlie facing the fire and there's George hiding in Big Daddy's pocket. And what are you doing? You're gonna reward George and destroy Charlie. 

Mr. Trask: 

Are you finished, Mr. Slade? 

Lt. Col. Frank Slade: 

No, I'm just gettin' warmed up. I don't know who went to this place, William Howard Taft, William Jennings Bryan, William Tell, whoever. Their spirit is dead, if they ever had one. It's gone. You're building a rat ship here. A vessel for seagoing snitches, and if you think you're preparing these minnows for manhood, you better think again, because I say you are killing the very spirit this institution proclaims it instills. What a sham. What kind of a show you guys are putting on here today? I mean, the only class in this act is sitting next to me, and I'm here to tell ya this boy's soul is intact. It's non-negotiable. You know how I know? Someone here, and I'm not gonna say who, offered to buy it. Only Charlie here wasn't selling. 

Mr. Trask: 

Sir, you're out of order. 

[Trask hits the gavel; Col. Slade stands up angry] 

Lt. Col. Frank Slade: 

Out of order. I'll show YOU "out of order"! You don't know what "out of order" is, Mr. Trask. I'd show you, but I'm too old, I'm too tired, I'm too fucking blind. If I were the man I was five years ago, I'd take a... 

Lt. Col. Frank Slade: 

[slams his cane on the desk, screaming] 

FLAMETHROWER to this place! Out of order? Who the hell do ya think you're talking to? I've been around, ya know? There was a time I could see. And I have seen. Boys like these, younger than these. Their arms torn out, their legs ripped off. But there is nothing like the sight of an amputated spirit. There's no prostetic for that. You think you're merely sending this splendid foot solder back home to Oregon with tail between his legs, but I say you are executing his SOUL! And why? Because he's not a Baird man. Baird men. You hurt this boy, you're gonna be Baird bums, the lot of ya. And Harry, Jimmy, Trent, wherever you are, fuck you too! 

[the student body and the committee are in shock as Trask's anger is further aggravated] 

Mr. Trask: [yells; hits the gavel three times] 

Stand down, Mr. Slade! 

Lt. Col. Frank Slade: 

I'm not finished! As I came in here, I heard those words, "Cradle of Leadership". Well, when the bough breaks, the cradle will fall. And it has fallen here. It has fallen. Makers of men, Creators of leaders. Be careful what kind of leaders you're producing here. I don't know if Charlie's silence here today is right or wrong. I'm not a judge or jury, but I can tell you this: He won't sell anybody out to buy his future! And that, my friends, is called integrity. That's called courage. Now that's the stuff leaders should be made of. Now I have come to the crossroads in my life. I always knew what the right path was. Without exception, I knew. But I never took it. You know why? It was too damn hard. Now here's Charlie. He's come to the crossroads. He has chosen a path. It's the right path. It's a path made of principle that leads to character. Let him continue on his journey. You hold this boy's future in your hands, committee. It's a valuable future. Believe me. Don't destroy it. Protect it. Embrace it. It's gonna make you proud one day, I promise you.

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