written by Kevin Yagher & Andrew Kevin Walker, from the short story by Washington Irving
Lady Van Tassel: (whispers and chants) Rise up once more, my Dark Avenger! -- Rise up! -- One more night of Beheading! -- Rise up with your sword, and your Mistress of the night will make you whole -- a head for a head, my unholy Horseman -- rise -- rise -- rise from the earth, come forth again through the Tree of the Dead... come now for... Katrina! Awake at last? Did you think it was all a nasty dream? Alas, no.
Katrina: My father saw the Horseman kill you...
Lady Van Tassel: He saw the Horseman coming to me with his sword unsheathed! But it is I who govern the Horseman, my dear, and Baltus did not stay to see.
Katrina: But there was your body!
Lady Van Tassel: The servant girl, Sarah, I always thought her useless, but she turned, out useful. Tomorrow I'll totter out of the woods and spin a tale how I found Baltus and Sarah in the act of lust... as I watched, the Horseman was upon them, and off went Sarah's head! I fainted and remember nothing more...
Katrina: Who are you?
Lady Van Tassel: My family name was... Archer.
Katrina: (remembering the cottage hearth) The Archer...
Lady Van Tassel: I lived with my father and mother and my sister in a gamekeeper's cottage not far from here... Until one day, my father died, and the landlord who received many years of loyal service from my parents... evicted us. No one in this God-fearing town would take us in... because my mother was suspected of witchcraft... She was no witch, but I believe she knew much that lies under the surface of life... and she schooled her daughters well while we lived as outcasts in the Western Woods. She died within a year... and my sister and I remained in our refuge, seeing not a soul... until, gathering firewood one day, we crossed the path of the Hessian...I saw his death, and from that moment...I offered my soul to Satan if he would raise the Hessian from the grave to avenge me.
Katrina: Avenge you?
Lady Van Tassel: Against Van Garrett, who evicted my family, against Baltus Van Tassel who, with wife and simpering girlchild, stole our home. I swore I would make myself mistress of all they had... The easiest part was the first - to enter your house as your mother's sick nurse and put her body into the grave, and my own into the marriage bed. Not quite so easy was to secure my legacy... but lust delivered Reverend Steenwyck into my power. Fear did the same for the Notary Hardenbrook. The drunken Philipse succumbed for a share of the proceeds, and the Doctor's silence I exchanged for my complicity in his fornications with the servant girl Sarah...
Katrina: (keeping Lady Van Tassel's attention) Yes! -- you have everything now.
Lady Van Tassel: No, my dear -- you do, by your father's will. But I get everything in the event of your death. This pretty bauble, which I so kindly gave you to wear, has done it's work. My sister, by the way, sadly passed away... quite recently.
Katrina: It was the Crone you killed... your own sister...
Lady Van Tassel: She brought it upon herself.. .(suddenly, to Young Masbath (Marc Pickering)) -- by helping you and your master! You are just in time to have your head sliced off! (Katrina and Young Masbath run to each other for mutual comfort.) The Horseman comes. And tonight he comes for you!
Kudos and much thanks go to Ryan for this monologue (from the screenplay available online), it is very much appreciated.
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