(EMPEROR enters. He is
sleepwalking with his eyes closed and arms extended. PETER
quickly runs to hide behind an audience member.)
(Having a bad dream.)
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! No! No! Noooooo! It's not
true! I am the Imperial Emperor! How dare you imply that
I am not fit! No! No! It's not true!
(While EMPEROR babbles on, arms
flailing, PETER gets a little braver as he realizes the EMPEROR is
sleeping. EMPEROR can ad-lib here as much as needed.
"How dare you say I'm not fit!" PETER goes up to him,
circles around and finally waves his hand in front of
face. PETER enjoys himself and gets an idea.)
I am a good Emperor. I am a
good Emperor. My father and his father before him and his
father before him have ruled the Empire! It's not true!
It's not true!
Oh, dear. (Runs
Your Majesty! Your Majesty. (Pats
(Pats a little harder, still
nothing. Pats very hard, arm extended. Delivers a fake
blow punctuated with cymbal from ORCHESTRA. This blow should
look obviously fake with her arm and hand coming no where near his head.)
Dear, you're having another one of your nightmares.
(Wakes, still half
dreaming. He is excited, trembling, out of breath, clings to EMPRESS.)
There, there now, that's a good little Emperor. Did we have a
nasty old dream?
Did the little itty bitty Emperor have a bad old dream?
(She comforts, then calls.)
Mirror! Mirror! Someone
bring the Emperor his mirror! Quick!
(No one comes, she sees PETER.)
Well, don't just stand there, young
man, bring the Emperor his mirror. Now!
Uh. Yes, sure. Your Majesty. Right away, your majesty.
(PETER looks around, cannot find
(Finally PETER mimes carrying a
mirror before the EMPEROR and becomes the mirror himself, standing
before him, "mirroring" his actions.)
There now, here's your nice mirror.
(EMPEROR has hands over eyes and
peeks between his fingers to see himself in the mirror, PETER also
peeks between his fingers and continues to do exactly what EMPEROR does.)
See how nice we look in the mirror?
(The sight of his image helps
EMPEROR to recover and he begins to stand taller and with more confidence.)
to admire self.)
See now, there's nothing to be afraid of.
(EMPEROR performs before the
mirror now, getting cocky, struts and poses.)
Yes, you're right, of course. Such a silly dream. Hah!
Who could I ever dream that I am unfit to rule?
You? Unfit! Don't make me laugh.
Just look! Why, I am the perfect specimen of a ruler.
(He gestures, poses, as PETER
And just look how splendid my
costuming is. Ah! This mirror tells me so much!
It tells you things, dear?
For instance, if I wear a blue jacket and it happens to match the
color of my eyes that day, then I know that it is the day I should
You are a truly... inspired ruler, my dear.
I think I shall like to try the purple jacket now.
Oh, yes, the purple one. Dear, do you want the purple jacket
with the emerald collar or the one with the diamond buttons?
I believe I am in the mood for diamonds. (Flashes
smile in the mirror.)
Yes, of course.
(She brings it to him. She
helps him put it on.)
Lovely, just lovely!
Yes, it is, isn't it?
You know, my dear, it is so splendid that I think that this is the
one you should wear in the royal procession next Saturday.
Yes, I think you might be right.
(PETER breaks away from being
the mirror. EMPEROR and EMPRESS continue as if he
has not moved, looking into mirror, both with hands on chins,
frowning as they consider. PETER stands behind them, puts his
hand on chin, frowns, looks into the "mirror" considers,
mimicking them. They stand in this manner for a moment.)
Oh, no. Huh-uh. That will never do.
What? Who was that?
(They turn to see PETER, who
drops into a bow.)
I am Peter, sir. Peter the Tailor, your majesty.
How did you get in here?
Dear, it's all right. I let him in.
But I don't need another tailor.
Oh, I think you do, sir.
You do, do you? And why is that, young man?
I couldn't help overhearing that you were planning to wear... (Shows
that... to your royal procession next Saturday.
Well, I was thinking about it...
What? What? Don't you think it suits me?
examining with distaste.)
What? Doesn't it fit properly?
Well, its just that...
You know, I was thinking that perhaps it was a little too... a
Yes. Ordinary! Of course! My dear, bring me the
one with the emeralds!
Oh, I don't think that will do either.
No. No, of course not. Emeralds are a little too...
A little too...
Yes! Ordinary! Of course! (Thinks.) Now, see
here, young man. Just what do you consider extra-ordinary?
Your Highness, he says that he makes clothes that are...
(Together, PETER making a grand
gesture. Magical chimes from the ORCHESTRA.)
EMPRESS & PETER:
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