Source: "Short Plays for Juniors" by Irene Salami

  1. Zack
  2. Fanny - Zack's brother
  3. Femi - Zack's Son
  4. Esi - Zack's wife
  5. Ene - Fanny's wife
  6. King
  7. Messenger
Narrator: In the village of Fantu lived two brothers, named Zack and Fanny. Zack becomes very sick and is dying. He asks his wife Esi and son, Femi to be close by . His brother, Fanny, is very anxious for his rich brother to die so that he can confiscate his property. Unfortunately, Fanny's plans fail.

SCENE ONE: (This Scene opens with Zack very sick on the bed. His wife, son and brother are around him.)

Esi: Go and call the medicine man.

Fanny: Is there any need? He will get better in a few days' time.

Esi: Please go, Zack is dying.

Fanny: Okay, I'm going.

Femi: Mother, is Father going to die? (crying)

Esi: He is not going to die.

Femi: Then why are you crying?

Esi: I'm not crying, leave me alone.

(Fanny returns with the medicine man.)

Medicine man: (after examining the patient) I'm sorry, there is nothing I can do. This disease has eaten up his heart. He will probably die in a few day's time.

(Exit Medicine man)

Zack: Esi, don't cry; Femi, my son, don't cry. Death is something that must come to pass.

(To Fanny) Bring me the safe. Take this safe, there is 1,000 naira in it. Keep it and take care of my lands until my son is old enough to inherit them.

Fanny: Yes, my brother.

(Exit Fanny)

(Zack does not completely trust Fanny so he writes a will, puts it in a locket and hangs it around Femi's neck.)

Zack: See that no one removes this locket until he is old enough to understand what I have written in it.

Esi: Yes, my husband.

Zack: Esi, take care of yourself and Femi, my son. The world is a wicked place, but God will see you through.

(Dies after saying this. Esi and Femi begin to cry.)


Fanny: (To himself) So God answered my prayers at last and now, I'm a rich man. Who cares about my brother's widow and son? They can fend for themselves. After all, all these years I have only eaten the crumbs that fell from their table.

Ene: What is all this rejoicing for?

Fanny: My brother will soon die and he has entrusted to me all his belongings to keep for his son until he is of age but they are now automatically mine.

Ene: That's unfair.

Fanny: Shut up and get out. Who cares for fairness these days?

SCENE THREE: (Femi is now grown up; his mother tells him to open the locket. After reading it he is very angry and goes to his uncle.)

Femi: Good-day, Uncle.

Fanny: Good-day, my son.

Femi: I have come to claim my inheritance.

Fanny: (looking puzzled) Inheritance! What proof have you got that I owe you an inheritance?

(Femi gives him the locket, he opens it and after reading the contents, he puts it in his mouth and swallows it.)

Fanny: (shouting) Get out of my house; I don't know what you are talking about.

Femi: If you don't know what I'm talking about, why have you eaten up my proof? (Fanny chases Femi out of his house. Femi goes to the palace and complains to the king.)

SCENE FOUR: The King's Palace

Messenger: What do you want?

Femi: I want to see the King.

Messenger: Wait here.

(goes to the King) Your Majesty, someone wants to see you.

King: Bring him in.

Messenger: Come with me.

Femi: Your Highness, long may you reign. Several years ago when my father was dying, he entrusted my uncle with my inheritance. When I went to him to claim what was mine, he pretended not to know me and swallowed the proof I gave him to see.

King: Go and call me your mother, uncle and his wife. I shall find out who is lying when you return.

SCENE FIVE: In the Palace

(The king tells them to carry a heavy box round the village in pairs i.e. Femi and his mother, then his uncle and his wife.)

Esi: This box is very heavy. If my husband were alive, this wouldn't be happening to me.

Femi: Don't worry Mother, God will soon prove us innocent.

(Femi and his mother return with the box, Fanny and his wife take it.)

Ene: What you have done is very unfair.

Fanny: Who cares for fairness anyway? The King can't do anything about it. The only proof the boy had is now in my stomach.

Ene: I am tired; please, let's rest a bit.

Fanny: (kicking her) Hurry up and stop complaining.

Narrator: When they finally return to the village, the king walks up to the box, opens it and out crawls the king's most trusted advisor. He narrates to the King what he had heard. The boy is given his inheritance and Fanny is banished from the village.