A Study In Gaping (Adriana Chechik)
SCENE OPENS on a professor's lush, old-fashioned-looking university office. Professor Claremont (Mick Blue) stands at an ornate window, looking out lost in thought onto the university campus. On the visitors couch across the room, his teacher's assistant Annabelle (Adriana Chechik) sits, waiting and fidgeting in the awkward silence. The ticking decorative clock on his desk is the only sound for several seconds. Finally, Annabelle breaks the silence -- 'umm, you were saying, professor?' Professor Claremont snaps out of his reverie and turns to face her. Ah, yes, sorry, he apologizes. His thoughts had whisked him away to unknown places, he says playfully. The professor appears eccentric but charming, like a man from another era. Annabelle seems used to his odd behavior, even a bit enamored by it. He says that they've done enough for the day and dismisses her. But as she's leaving, he calls her back to get her thoughts on a new biology project he's working on. He trusts her like he trusted her sister, who he taught years ago. Annabelle is flattered, but tries to act nonchalant about it. He continues, saying that the project would be controversial but of great interest to him on both a professional and personal level. She asks him to go on, but before he does, he moves to sit beside her on the couch and switches to a very serious tone. He insists that she swears she not tell anybody what he's about to tell her. He repeats that it's quite controversial, and it could jeopardize his career if anybody were to find out about his interest in the subject. Annabelle looks a bit taken aback, but promises that she won't tell anybody. 'Marvellous!' he says, switching back to a lighthearted tone. He pats her knee with his hand innocently. 'Now then, tell me - what do you know about 'gaping'?'
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