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Cloud 9

Caryl Churchill

Act II, Scene 2

Act II, Scene 1

Act II, Scene 2, page 2

page 1 of 2
Summary

Edward tends his garden as his lover Gerry looks on from a park bench. They argue like an old married couple about Gerry's staying out too late and never checking in. Gerry breaks from the conversation to address the audience. He tells a story about giving oral sex to a stranger on a train and then growing disappointed when the man wanted to talk.

Cathy hops on the swing and starts into another of her poems. She finishes the poem and leaves. Martin, Victoria, and Betty walk into the park. Martin yells at Tommy offstage as Betty and Victoria discuss Betty's divorce. Betty tells Victoria that she is afraid of life alone. Betty sits on the bench. Martin speaks to Victoria about the pros and cons of her taking a job in Manchester. He displays some insecurity about her leaving, wondering what they will do with the house and what might become of their son Tommy.

Lin and Cathy stroll into the park as Martin finishes his speech. Cathy chats about wanting to have tea. Martin decides to take up his conversation with Victoria again, arguing that her "liberation" has caused her to cry too often. Cathy interrupts Martin by shooting Victoria with her cap gun. Cathy tells Victoria to fall over. Cathy tells her that falling over is what The Dead Hand Gang always insists that Cathy do.

When Cathy leaves, Martin launches into another speech. He tells Victoria, "My one aim is to give you pleasure," but he implies frustration because of not being able to do so. He encourages her to continue experimenting with bisexuality, but remains "insulted" by her indecision. They leave.

Betty and Lin, who have remained on the park bench all along, begin to discuss children and parenting. Betty worries about Lin being a single mother as Lin asserts her independence and ability to raise Cathy alone. Martin and Victoria return. Still frustrated, Martin continues to nag Victoria with talk of sex. When Martin and Victoria reach Lin and Betty, Martin agrees to walk Betty home to avoid any sort of confrontation with Lin.

With Martin out of sight, Victoria and Lin embrace. Victoria asks Lin a series of questions in search of assurances that Lin loves her. Lin suggests that Victoria leave Martin, but Victoria considers her request "silly." Lin takes offense when Victoria calls her "inconsistent." In arguing with Victoria, Lin reveals that she has just learned of her brother's death in Belfast. Cathy runs in, having heard the last part of the conversation and asks who has been killed. Lin attempts to take Cathy home, but Cathy resists. They fight, Lin's earlier frustrations continuing to build, and Lin hits Cathy. Cathy runs off, and Lin turns to Victoria to embrace.

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