Full Length Play - Broken Paths | London, UK | Darren Brealey - Playwright

Belligerent mother of two and daughter-in-law of the family matriarch battles her cancer-ridden and dementia suffering mother-in-law whilst her husband and brother-in-law discuss their mother's nursing and care home arrangements.

Broken Paths

Sample Script
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Virginia survives in her home with the constant assistance of Tracey and sometimes, Chad. Michael calls in from time to time when not working, relieving Tracey of her duties. Chad and Tracey’s children play in the backyard of Virginia’s home when Tracey’s mother cannot look after them.


Charley celebrates his tenth birthday at Virginia’s home. Tracey and Chad hold a small and uninspired party for Charley at Virginia’s request in her family home, without the fuss of Charley’s friends and mess. As Charley and Ricky entertain each other in the small backyard, Tracey and Chad discuss how best to approach Virginia with moving into a Nursing Home. They decide to remove her from her home by sending her on a holiday; whilst away they can downsize her home, take what they want and sell off the rest that won’t fit into the Nursing Home.


Virginia attempts to help Tracey understand her life and have her realise a Nursing Home is not in her best interest, but fails to convey this message. With plans fully underway, Virginia decides to take control of her own destiny and end her life by choking to death on her lunch.


After Virginia funeral service, Michael and Chad discuss their mother’s Final Will and Testament. The mourners have left, their kind thoughts exchanged. The sandwiches and tea have been served. It’s no secret to the boys their late mother’s Final Will and Testament has been divided equally.


Chad makes his announcement to contest the Will for his lions share; Michael defends his ground. Tracey makes her true feelings known about Michael to both of them, which only aggravates the underflow of smouldering years of unspoken hatred between the three of them. The little church on the hill where the funeral service for Mrs Virginia Morris was held prepares for another funeral service to be held at five.


Tracey stands in front of the kitchen sink staring out the kitchen window. The sink is filled with soapy hot water ready for the dirty dishes sitting next to the sink. Birthday wrapping paper for a 10-year old boy’s birthday presents litter the island bench, next to the wrapping paper sits a couple of comic books and a toy car. A Happy Birthday banner is stretched out on the kitchen wall behind Tracey. Leftovers of a birthday cake and party utensils litter the dining table. Virginia sits at the dining table with a glass of water, picking at the cake crumbs and eating them. Virginia stands with the aide of her walking stick and stumbles towards her bedroom. An Emergency Services siren is heard approaching and then disappearing into the distance.