Fairy Lights, by Ginni Manning

Lol is sitting on a balcony that is entwined with lights. Pad is below on the ground.

Lol:      Hey!

Pad is looking around.

Lol:      What’re you doing?

Pad:     Just looking.

Lol:      You’re in our garden.

Pad:     Garden? I thought it was a park.

Lol:      So it’s big. It’s still ours.

Pad looks around on the floor.

Lol:      What are you looking for?

Pad:     Why do you want to know?

Lol:      You’re in MY garden.

Pad:     But you’re up there and I’m down here, so I can do what I want. Are you going to come down and stop me?

Lol:      Down there? No….but I can help, maybe, if you tell me what it is you’re looking for.

Pad:     If you could see it, you’d know.

Lol:      It’d be easier if there wasn’t snow. You must be freezing.

Pad:     You’re the one sitting outside. Why have you got your lights on?

Lol:      These?

Pad:     It’s daylight.

Lol:      I like having them on, they look pretty. Sometimes in the summer I sit out here with my cat til the night time, and the lights get brighter as the sky goes darker.

Pad:     Well I can see them from over there. I saw your cat too. It’s a big one. It looks like a giant hamster.

Lol:      Cute, isn’t she.

Pad:     She’s fat.

Lol:      That’s mean. She’s well fed. She finishes off my dinner every day. Her favourite is roast chicken.

Pad:     You give your cat roast chicken?

Lol:      Yeah, why not?

Pad:     Whatever.

Lol:      You want to come up here?

Pad:     I’m busy.

Lol:      Maybe you could look down from here? It’s a better view.

Pad considers this.

Pad:     How do I get in?

Lol:      There’s a door, but……what about the tree?

Pad:     You want me to climb the tree?

Lol:      Yes, great idea!

Pad:     You climb the tree! You can go down one as well as up. Come and help me.

Lol:      No, I don’t think so….

Pad:     How about using the lights as a rope?

Lol:      But they might break.

Pad:     You can always get some more.

Lol:      No way! I like these ones. I like the way they look.

Pad:     Hmm.

(Beat.)

Pad:     So I guess I’m going to stay down here.

Lol:      But, there’s seats here, you can sit with me.

Pad shrugs.

Pad:     I’m not climbing the tree, so it’s either the lights or the door…

Lol:     Okay….. See if you can get in. I’ll wait here.

Pad exits. Lol waits.

(Prompt : I used Starting Point #2 for this play. I opened the door and saw the fairy lights in the attached photograph.)


I’m a playwright from Liverpool, U.K. I trained at the Everyman, I’m a theatre maker with the Lantern Writers in Merseyside and have performed at Action Transport Theatre’s Writers’ Ball. I run shared reading groups every week, using literature to promote a sense of wonder, discussion and community with looked after children and groups of grown ups. I took part in the 19th Assitej World Congress Playwright Slam and returned to South Africa in 2017 to work with Lalu Mokuku on an international collaboration that is ongoing.