SCENE 1. HORN OF VALERE OPENING
MUSIC: (BRIDGE) OPENING FANFARE, ESTABLISH THEN FADE UNDER
Ladies and Gentlemen, Ear of the World Theater presents "The Horn of Valere," a radio mystery in four parts. We now begin.
MUSIC: (STING) DRAMATIC OPENING, FADE UNDER FOR TITLE, QUICK FADE AFTER TITLE
The Horn of Valere
MUSIC: (BRIDGE) SOFT AND SLOW BIG BAND INTRO, NOIR STYLE, FADE UNDER
It seems like an age long past since the troubles began, but standing here in the thick of it, I'm sure there's more yet to come. The winds had blown a storm into town that fateful day. I should have seen it as an omen of a beginning, for that was the day [pause for emphasis] she came to town.
SCENE 2. ROOM INSIDE INN. EVENING
(Rain falling outside window. Sounds of someone flipping through papers, humming slightly. Sturdy knock at the door)
You can come in.
(DOOR OPENS, MAN WALKS IN)
Mr. Cauthon, I'm here to remind you about the agreement over the month's rent?
Yes, I've got your money right here.
(COINS PULLED OUT OF BAG, PLACED ON TABLE, THEN PICKED UP)
[counting] Five, Ten, Fourteen. And will you be staying another month?
No, I finished up my last job here and I'm looking to move on tomorrow
Well, Mr. Cauthon, I'll be missing your company around the bar. Not so much the fights, as it were, [chuckle] but you do tell good stories.
And you, Mr. Bried, serve good ale to go along with those good stories. Is there anything else? I'd like to finish up some notes I'm keeping.
Well, now that you mention it, there's a man that's was asking about you earlier. [gossiping] Dreadful looking man, armed and with the face of a man accustomed to being in charge. He left a letter for you, said he'd be in town through tomorrow night and that he might have a job for you.
[hands over letter]
Thank you [thoughtful grunt as he looks at the seal, speaks next bit quietly to self] Is that a crane of some kind?
[Louder, to Bried] Did you read the letter yet?
(SOUND OF PAPER BEING UNFOLDED)
[blustering] Why, Mr. Cauthon, the very idea of my snooping into a guest's message! [nervous] That and the, uh, gentleman in question made it clear that I was to leave it be, or else.
[Reads letter, is obviously distracted by whatever it contains]
What? Oh, yes. I suppose so. [pause for thought, still distracted] If you could send Seraen up with some food in a little bit? I think I'd like a meal to eat while I think over this letter.
[brightly] Of course, Mr. Cauthon. I just ask that, what with tonight possibly being busy at the bar, you not help her to dawdle at all?
That shouldn't be a trouble at all.
(FOOTSTEPS WALK AWAY, DOOR OPENS AND CLOSES, FOOTSTEPS CONTINUE DOWN THE HALL. SOFT TREAD OF FOOTSTEPS TO DOOR, DOOR OPENS SLIGHTLY, THEN CLOSES)
[quietly, to self] Well, that was most interesting. [reading letter softly aloud]
Meet me at the Horned Stag, will be wearing green cloak next to lady in blue dress. [scoffs] Yeah, because that's going to stand out so well in a crowd. [pause] Come armed? [thinking aloud to himself] Blood and ashes, that's the bit I don't understand. Why tell someone to bring a sword, unless they're expecting trouble. Even then, I haven't talked my fees with him yet, let alone received any money, and already I'll be thrown into the thick of it.
(KNOCK ON DOOR)
Ah, good. Dinner is here. Hopefully there should be some decent wine.
(FOOTSTEPS, DOOR OPENS)
[Frightened] You? NO!
(FADE OUT ALL SOUND)
MUSIC: (BRIDGE) MELODIC THEME, FADE UNDER
This has been Part One of "The Horn of Valere," an Ear of the World production. Who are the mystery man and woman at the Horned Stag? Who was at the door? Where exactly are the jokes I'm supposed to be telling? These questions and more will be answered, so stay tuned for Part Two, coming after this commercial break.