The Romantic Thief
By S.M. Zakir Hussain (Bangladesh)
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Here is a short drama. I wrote it to show new writers how they can write funny dramas.
<<An example of the art of writing a short drama>>
The Romantic Thief
Mr. and Mrs. Choudhuri reported to the police that somebody stole a very precious necklace of theirs while they were in Cox’s Bazaar, enjoying the time on holidays. They have mentioned a person called Milan as the suspect and have also provided some facts in support of their claim. The police have appointed Mr. Sherlock Holmes as detective. Now he’s going to interrogate Mr. Suspect.
Policeman: (Aiming a pistol at the suspect’s head to threaten him into disclosing the fact) Now, listen to me, man. You’re wasting my time. So disclose everything that you did and make my job easy. Or else, I’ll blow your head up.
Suspect: (frightened and trembling) Oh no, please don’t shoot me, Sir. I’ll just tell you everything.
Policeman: (Putting the pistol aside) You’re a good boy. (Turning on the cassette player) Hmm …. now tell out what you did.
Suspect: I didn’t do anything.
Policeman: (Disappointed, and slapping on the table, turns the cassette player off) Oof! Why doesn’t the detective come? [… After a pause, aiming the pistol at the suspect, he starts shouting:] I’ll just kill you today!
[Just then the detective enters.]
Detective: Oh no, no, no. Not yet. Not yet.
Policeman: Oh, you’re come, sir. See what he’s saying.
Detective: I see. He knows what he’s saying. Well, (to the police) just remember one thing: Kill him if you must, but don’t kill his head, because that’s very important to me now, (Looking at the suspect) isn’t it?
Suspect: Yes, sir. You’re right. You know, I need this head to think about my fiancé.
Detective: Wow! Nice. So you’re a romantic thief, I see.
Suspect: Yes …
Detective and Policeman together: Yes?
Detective: That means you are a romantic thief?
[Policeman turns the cassette player on and holds the pistol against Suspect’s head]
Suspect: Yes ...
Detective & Policeman: Yes?
Suspect (continues): Romantic, but not a thief.
[Policeman takes away the pistol. The Detective, browsing through his file, says:]
Detective: Where were you from the 17th to the 21st of June?
Suspect: In Chittagonj.
Detective: You speak the truth, I see. But why, I may ask you?
Suspect: On business.
Detective: And did you have business at Cox’s Bazar too?
Suspect: Not really. But I went there to utilize the opportunity …
Policeman: (Raising his stick) Opportunity? What opportunity? (Turns on the cassette player.)
Suspect: To enjoy a day off.
Detective: Did you get introduced to the Choudhury family there?
Suspect: I’m also from a Choudhury family. And I’ve been a local political leader for a long time, and I’ve a Mama and a Khalu who’re ministers of this country.
Detective: So you are! And that’s why you didn’t steal any small thing.
Suspect: Yes …
Policeman & Detective: Yes!!
Suspect: Oh no, I just forgot my language.
Detective: Yes, you forgot to manage your language.
[Pause. The policeman says, ‘Should I break his hand, sir? Detective says, “Nothing is true until you have it recorded in a black tape recorder. Well, don’t worry. Truth can never elude me. It always catches me on my way home.’ Suddenly the detective shouts out saying:] “I’ve got it! I’ve got it!
Policeman: What, sir?
Detective: He really didn’t steal anything.
Suspect: You’re right, sir.
Policeman: You’re wrong, sir.
Detective: Shut up, please! [Takes out the coke cans from his bag] we can enjoy this moment of truth … here you are (to police) … and you honest man, enjoy yourself.
Detective: So you’ve one fiancé only, and no wife.
Suspect: [Nods a yes, without saying a word.]
Detective: And you’re going to marry her this year?
Suspect: (Crying) But how can I? I have no ornaments to give her.
Detective: Oh! So sad! I’m sorry. You know, my girl-friend at last rejected me after 10 years, only because I couldn’t give her a necklace.
Suspect: You’re right, sir. Necklace – it must be more valuable to a woman than a man’s life.
Detective: Yes, than your honesty, sometimes.
[Just then the detective’s phone rings.]
Detective: Hssh! I’ve a phone call. … Hello walaikum as salam. Hello! Oh yes, this is Sherlock Holmes, and people call me Sir Lock Homes. … Oh Runia? You can’t imagine how I was expecting a call from you.
Suspect: Runia? That must be my fiancé! Can I talk to her, please?
Detective: Yes, he’s been suspected of theft. He’s here in front of me.
Suspect: Could I talk to her, please? [Detective gives him the phone.] Hello, honey! … Please just listen to me. It’s a lie that they’ve told you … oh please, listen to me. Please! Well, you’re right, but I didn’t steal a ring. It’s not a ring that I stole. I stole a necklace! ... something more valuable ...
[The policeman turns the cassette player on. The suspect suddenly stops, bewildered and fooled. Beneath the glasses, the detective looks at the audience and says:]
Detective: And really, he didn’t steal the ring.