What If I Am?



Scene Title What If I Am?
Synopsis Helena Dean considers her own fears and strengths in a face that is not her own.
Date August 27, 2009

Village Renaissance Building - Cat's Penthouse

She's been staring at her face for the past half hour. And not just staring, but gently prodding it with her fingertips, following the shape of her jaw, the furrow of her brow, the slope of her nose. The procedure had been distinctly unpleasant, but not as bad as she thought it might be. And so she sits, staring at herself in the mirror, into eyes that are hers, and yet aren't.

What if I am?

A victim. A teenager. A child. A princess. A spoiled brat.

What if I'm exactly what everyone's been saying, all along? Do I have any right to be here? Do I have any right to be doing this? Am I doing the right thing? Am I doing it for the right reasons?

Her hair is long and black now. Not black like Gillian's, but not brown like Cat's, either. Sable, perhaps. It's fairy tale hair, that belongs on a princess going to a ball. Her eyes are less aquamarine and more grey-green, her jaw a touch more wide, more stubborn. Helena experiments with it. Up, down, twisted in a variety of ways. Its softness is different from the texture it has when it's fair, and it even smells different. Or maybe her mind is playing tricks.

What if I am?

A hypocrite. A rebel. A prisoner. A leader. An activist.

Am I a hypocrite? Will this all fall apart? If I make one mistake, will all of this come crashing down? Do they see the fear? At what point is it leading, and at what point is it being a petty little dictator? At what point is it making a decision versus fearing people's reaction to rejection?

Her lips are different too. Even with the same skin tone, the differences in the shape of her face, the color of her eyes and hair, she'll have to use completely different makeup. This face is hers - but it also isn't. In this face that is hers and also a stranger, she confronts things she doesn't want to think about, because in a way these are the fears and questions of someone else. Someone she doesn't have to be. This face could be freedom, but could it really, when looking past her own eyes, she'll always know?

She looks at a face that in no way resembles either of her parents. At a mouth never kissed and a cheek never caressed by hands that now can only carry ash.

A daughter. A lover. A victim.

She looks past her own eyes, and suddenly there, she finds what she needs, even if it's just to make it another day.

A fighter.

That's what I am.

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