The thought of leaving doesn’t sit right with me.

In drama scene, “Nightfall”, Henry tries to help Betsy figure out a plan to manage her disobedient nephew by sending him to Florida.

HENRY: Could always cut him off.



BETSY: Impossible.

HENRY: Get him out somewhere, doing less.

BETSY: That boy needs to see me.

HENRY: Keep him on the ranch, see you in the mornings.

BETSY: I’m still wide awake in the mornings.

HENRY: Supper time then. When he’s coming back and you’re about to leave.

BETSY: Supper.

HENRY: M-hmm.

BETSY: Supper time would work. We’ll have to get him a whole new schedule, make him feel important, make him feel as though being on the ranch is the most helpful thing he could do for me. I don’t know!

HENRY: You could try it out, see what happens.

BETSY: He’s too set in his ways.

HENRY: Betsy, it’s worth a try.

BETSY: I know it is but still, he may not go for it.

HENRY: You know the alternative.

BETSY: Yes, yes I do.

HENRY: Try it out, see how he takes it.

BETSY: All that drinking, smoking, gambling and women! He’ll never leave the parlor. What the hell was I thinking?!

HENRY: You did the best you could.

BETSY: Did I??

HENRY: You didn’t ask for his life to be in your hands.

BETSY: It’s not that he hasn’t been good for me. Not everything is anxious.

HENRY: That I can agree on. (chuckles)

BETSY: My sister’ll be turning in her grave. Some nights I swear I could hear her whisper in my ears. We just buying time, ain’t we? But them police are moving in. It’s getting harder and harder to keep them at bay.

HENRY: Betsy, slow down. Everything is in your control.

BETSY: Not for long! I feel them coming for me!

HENRY: When’s the last time you went off somewhere..took a break?

BETSY: Off somewhere? Don’t you know, I don’t go off anywhere!

HENRY: Maybe it’s time you did.

BETSY: And do what? Step on lantern flies?

HENRY: Betsy, you need not worry about anything here.


HENRY: I’ll take the reins while you’re away.

BETSY: Henry, I trust ya, you know that, but if I step away from the wheel for longer than a day, things’ll come tumbling down.

HENRY: That ain’t so.

BETSY: My presence is needed! I can’t go off on some break when all my worry stays here.

HENRY: Betsy Sue, you are one stubborn woman. You think I can’t handle things while you’re gone?

BETSY: …You could…it would be me, mm.

HENRY: Everything is safe with me.

BETSY: The thought of leaving doesn’t sit right with me.

HENRY: That’s cause you’ve never stepped out of your comfort zone. I’m telling you, it’ll be good for you. Remember that time I left to go up north?

Betsy nods.

HENRY: How was I when I came back?

BETSY: You smiled.

HENRY: And I never smile.

BETSY: You don’t.

HENRY: Take a leave of absence. Leave Willard here with me and you’ll be stress free.

BETSY: Where’d you expect me to go?

HENRY: …Florida, don’t everybody go to Florida eventually?

  • To read the full one-act ePlay, find purchase link below:

Nightfall by Joseph ArnoneIn the one act eplay Nightfall, Betsy makes a decision that causes her what could be the beginning of much grief and regret.  1 Woman, 2 Men.  Drama/Dark Humor.

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Joseph Arnone