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WORMS    4'1m*f RT: King Herod is eaten by worms

(RT == Readers' Theater: requires little or no memorization,
little or no rehearsal. An indefinite number of reporters are
salted throughout the audience.)

BLASTUS -- (enters wearing ornate tunic, headdress and sandals,
crosses to podium) Good Morning. My name is Blastus, I am prime
minister under King Herod Agrippa. The reason I called this
press conference is to give you some very sad news. King Herod
Agrippa is dead. He will be succeeded on the throne by his son,
Agrippa the second. I will give you the details of the burial
ceremony and the coronation of the new king when they become
available. Thank you. (turns)

REPORTER -- Can you tell us HOW King Herod died?

BLASTUS -- (turns) HOW he died?

REPORTER -- Yes. Can you tell us what he died from?

BLASTUS -- He died of... natural causes. Yes. That's it. He died
of natural causes. (turns) That's all for now.

REPORTER -- My sources tell me that King Herod was eaten by
worms.

BLASTUS -- (turns) You never heard that from me!

REPORTER -- No. But is it true?

BLASTUS -- I suppose it is.

REPORTER -- That doesn't sound like natural causes to me.

REPORTER -- Me either.

BLASTUS -- Worms are natural!

REPORTER -- So is lightning. But when someone is killed by
lightning noone claims he died of natural causes.

REPORTER -- Why are you being so evasive?

BLASTUS -- I'm not being evasive.

REPORTER -- Then why did you try to cover up the fact that the
king was eaten by worms?

BLASTUS -- I didn't try to cover it up. Alright. The king was
eaten by worms! Now are you happy?!

REPORTER -- This sounds remarkably like a judgement of God.

REPORTER -- Can you tell us what led up to King Herod's death?

BLASTUS -- What led up to it?

REPORTER -- Yes. What was the king doing that caused him to be
eaten by worms?

BLASTUS -- He was sitting on his throne addressing a meeting of
leaders from Tyre and Sidon. That's all.

REPORTER -- Why do I think there's more to it than that?

BLASTUS -- You don't believe me?

REPORTER -- Not for a moment.

REPORTER -- Herod called himself "the king of the Jews", but
he's done nothing but sell-out the Jews since he took the
throne.

REPORTER -- Didn't the Romans expand Herod's kingdom because he
sided with the Romans instead of his own subjects?

BLASTUS -- I wouldn't say he sided with the Romans. You make it
sound like he was a traitor.

REPORTER -- What else did Herod do just before the worms ate
him?

BLASTUS -- Nothing.

REPORTER -- My sources tell me that the leaders of Tyre and
Sidon called Herod a god. But Herod didn't correct them. Is that
true?

BLASTUS -- Well, it's true that Herod's subjects think a lot of
their king.

REPORTER -- Did they call him a god or not?

BLASTUS -- Yes. They did. So?

REPORTER -- So, Herod calls himself the king of the Jews. And
the Jews have only one God.

REPORTER -- Isn't the penalty for blasphemy death?

BLASTUS -- Well, yes, that is the penalty for blasphemy. But
that's just for the Jews. It's a well known fact that the Herod
family are Edomites, not Jews.

REPORTER -- They can't have it both ways. The Herods proclaimed
themselves to be the kings of the Jews. God won't let them reap
the advantages without accepting the obligations.

BLASTUS -- King Herod is sovereign! He is obligated to nobody.

REPORTER -- Not anymore! He's dead.

BLASTUS -- (exiting) I don't have to stand here and take insults
from a bunch of reporters!

2013 Bob Snook. Conditions for use:
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