Theory:

Characters:      

Amy Marshall and Jim Hall are the main characters of the story. Amy Marshall is a \(17\)-year-old girl, and Betty Marshall is her younger sister. So, the Marshall family consists of mother, father, their daughters Amy and Betty. Rose Field is a \(16\)-year-old girl who stays in Amy's neighbourhood. Sara Field is a \(9\)-year-old girl and Rose's sister. Jim Hall is also a neighbour of the Marshall's. Mr. Peter is a member of the Red Cross Disaster Committee, and Penny Marsh is the Red Cross nurse. Mr. Peter and Miss Marsh help all of them to rescue.
 
Time: Late afternoon in March
Setting: Living room of the Marshall home.
  
Explanation:
  
The stage is very dim. Amy, Betty, and Rose are sitting around a table. While Amy and Rose are knitting, Betty is looking at pictures in the magazine.
 
Rose wanted some light, as it was getting dark on the rainy days early. She asked Amy if she can raise the curtain a bit. Amy agreed and said that maybe they need to switch on the light as well. Rose went near the window and saw outside. She could see the rains were heavy, and that the backyard has become a small lake. Amy also went near Rose and was astonished at the view. She said that it was the third day since it started raining and did not stop at all. When Betty heard Rose and Amy, she joined them and went near the window, keeping her magazine aside. Betty was happy to see so much water she said its more than a lake. It was looking like a sea. Betty heard the radio that morning, and it was announced that the river is overflowing, and it is a flood situation. But Betty could not understand much. Amy could understand that and said the river is above the white line, which means the danger zone on the bank of the Thomson Bridge. She said that it might have covered the fields on the south and the highway. Rose added her theory, saying that the snow is melting in the northern part of the state. Amy, Rose, and Betty go back to the table and talk to each other. Rose was a bit tensed and was hoping that there should not be a flood there. Suddenly they hear someone coming and trying to breathe slowly. They all look in that direction, who that was?
 
Jim Hall entered the room, and he was wearing a shining wet coat and arain helmet. He dragged the helmet as he was breathing heavily. He saw the girls and said that it was a cloudburst out there. He removed his rubber boots and said that he had run every step to get to this place from the school. He declared that the river was rising fast and the Brunett Dam had broken an hour ago. He said that others say the situation is bad. Jim asks Amy where her mother was?
 
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Amy said that her mother had taken Dick to the dentist and that she was going to stop at Mrs. Brant's place for a recipe before coming back. She said that her mother would be home soon. Next, Jim asked about Amy's father. Amy said that he had gone to Chicago for some business. Amy was amazed at why Jim was asking so many questions. Jim was about to say something, and the phone rang. Amy answered the phone. Everyone could hear her voice to whomsoever she was talking. Amy was talking to her mother. Her tone was serious. She said that Jim Hall and Rose were there at the house. She will tell something to someone and kept the phone. Amy said that her mother could not come home as the bridge between here and the town was full of water. Amy instructed Rose, saying her mother wanted Rose to call her mother and tell that she will spend the night at Amy's place.
 
Rose was more than eager to tell her mother that she will stay at Amy's place and goes to the room, which has the phone. Amy said to Betty that together they could fill all the tubs, bowls, buckets. So, that they would not run out of fresh water. It is even possible that the freshwater supply might get cut off from the town, or it might become unsafe to drink. Amy told Jim that her mother expects him to stay and help them.
 
Jim was ready to help them. He said that was the reason he came there. Jim asked Amy to keep the Lantern prepared, and before he could say more, Betty said that she had a flashlight and some candles. Rose was still trying to call her mother. She was irritated because she was trying to reach the Main 3022 line, but she was not able to get through. Rose was scared and said that the line was dead. There was not even a buzzing sound on the line.
 
Jim understood everything he said maybe the line is down due to flood situation. He tried to prepare the girls for the worst. Jim told them to get everything whatever is needed. He asked Betty to take care of candles, lamps, lanterns, and flashlights. Next, he tells Rose to fill the tubs and buckets. Amy and Jim needed to look for some food, bedsheets, and coats. He even wants to take out the first-aid kit. Jim asked everyone to hurry up, so Rose and Betty went to take care of the chores. Jim tells Amy that it was a grave situation. He didn't want to scare Amy, but Amy's house is directly in line with the river. If the dam is underwater, then it means that they cannot go out on the main road and that they are cut off from the southern side already. Both Jim and Amy go near the window and see.
 
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Amy exclaimed to Jim that the water was up around the garage already. She said that she thought it was just another pool which forms due to incessant rains in the garden, but it's the river which has swelled up till here. She calls it the old man river which has come almost near the door. Both tremble a bit, and Amy told Jim that she was frightened. Jim consoled her by putting his hand around the shoulder. He said that they been through many incidents which had come and gone. He reminds her of even the school fire. He says the foremost thing is not to let others know that they are frightened.
 
He wanted Amy to get all the things like bedsheets, lanterns, coats, food, and water in one place. Jim was a part of the Junior Red Cross emergency squad during the war. So, he knows certain things. Jim said that it was a disappointment that Amy's house was a bungalow instead of a two-storied house. He said they all could climb to the roof if needed.

Amy asked Jim how fast is the river rising? Jim replies saying he had no idea and it might stop before entering the bungalow. He said that if the rain stops, he would climb the roof and call out for help. The rescuers might send a boat or something like that to rescue them.
 
Rose entered and said that she hadfilled fresh water to last for almost a week. Rose overheard Jim about the boat and asks him why he was concerned. She goes near the window and realizes that the river has swollen up. Amy asks Rose to keep it to herself and not to tell others. She also informs Rose that according to Jim, everything will be alright. Amy tries to divert the topic and asks Rose to accompany her to look for some food.
 
Betty gets the lights, and after overhearing about the food asks for the same. Suddenly they all could hear some child's voice from somewhere. The voice said to Rose that it is Sara. Rose was astonished to hear the name Sara and looks for her from outside the window. Amy says that Sara was on the playhouse entrance and surprised to know she got there.
 
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Rose realized that Sara had followed her to Amy's place as she liked the playhouse very much. She called Sara a little monkey. Jim rushed out to bring Sara and asked her to stay wherever she was. Amy said that luckily the playhouse was on high ground, but Rose said that the playhouse was already floating. The girls went near the window when Rose saw Jim. Jim had water above his knees.
 
Amy was thinking of dry clothes for Jim and Sara and said that her Dad's clothes would fit Jim. Dick's clothes would fit Sara. Rose told Amy that Jim had gotten Sara. Since they were wet and hungry, Amy suggested that she would make hot cocoa for everyone. Jim brought Sara carrying her pickaback. Sara was enjoying the ride like all the kids do. Sara told everyone how she was having fun riding on Jim. Sara asked Jim to carry her more, but Jim refused and said that Sara was heavy. Amy said to Jim that he could have her Dad's clothes to change. Amy said she was going to prepare some evening meal, as she said the light went off. Everyone got frightened. Betty screamed out of fear.
 
Jim was trying to sound normal as he did not want others to be scared. He said that the powerhouse which supplies current might have stopped working. He instructed Betty to light the candles. Betty switched on the flashlight as well as lighted three candles. Amy was glad that they had the oil stove for cooking and that they did not need the electricity to cook. Rose took one candle and asked Betty and Sara to go towards the kitchen. Betty also took the candle, and they sang ‘Tramp, tramp, tramp the boys are marching’ and went to the kitchen. Jim whispered to Amy that the river had risen another foot. In another hour, the playhouse would float out. So he calculated that at this rate, the ground of the bungalow would be underwater by next day morning.
 
Amy told Jim that it was going to be tough, as both Sara and Betty did not know how to swim. Jim said that he would climb the roof and wave the flashlight to ask for help. May be someone will see it and come to rescue them. Amy wondered who was going to see him, as there were no houses in sight. Amy asked Jim whether he was frightened by this situation. Jim said that even he was scared. Amy assured herself saying at least Jim was there to help them. Jim encouraged her and said that they needed to think well, and everything will be alright.
 
Time: An hour later.
Setting: The same.
 
After the curtain rises again, the same group of people are there in the living room. Jim is an exception here. Sara is sleeping on the chair, whereas Betty is trying to read something. Amy, Rose, and Betty light three candles on the table.
 
Betty was annoyed that she could not read her book in that dim light and put the book down with a thud. She was wondering how the grandmothers used to read the book in their days when the light was not there. Rose retracted and said that they never read beyond a time when it gets dark. She said that they went to sleep when it got dark. Amy said that even they all should go to sleep as it was almost eleven at night, but she was not able to sleep. Betty and Rose agreed and said that even they are not sleepy. Suddenly they all hear a noise. Rose goes near the window to see what made the sound and she said that she could not see anything as it wasvery dark. But it sounded like something hitting against the house.
 
It was Mr. Peter. He asked whether everything was fine inside Mr. Marshall's house. He introduced himself, saying he was Tom Peters and Miss Marsh, the nurse from the Red Cross had come along with him. They came in the boat to enquire about Mr. Marshall and his family. Jim asked them to come from the backyard. They could hear that a boat had bumped against their wooden house, and some talks were being heard. Someone was telling to hold the boat steady, and he would hold the railings to tie the boat. Jim and Amy go to them and welcome them. Mr. Peters enters the living room along with Miss Marsh, Amy, and Jim...
 
Sara wakes up and recalls where she is. Rose helps Sara out to the attic. She wraps the blanket around Sara and takes Sara with her with a single candle. Amy told Jim that she wants to save her Dad's most valuable books and her Mom's jewel case, and she was thinking about what else to take when Jim interferes. He says that more than those books and jewels they need food and water. He said to Amy that she does not understand that things are beyond, and suddenly they heard a loud cry. Mr. Peters enters and asks for Mr. Marshall. Amy realized that Mr. Peters had come to help them, and she runs to the window to see. Jim joins her with the third candle and waves to Mr. Peters. He calls them screaming that they are inside. Betty heard them, andshe carried her box of dress and asked if they were being rescued and who had come to save them.
 
Mr. Peter still was waiting outside on a boat and said that he and Miss Marsh have come to help them.
 
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Betty was happy as they were being rescued and called out for Sara. Mr. Peters was amazed at why the children were all alone. Amy was trying to explain why they were on their own, and suddenly they heard a terrible crash, and someone screamed. Rose said that Sara has fallen from the steps, and she needs someone to come quickly and help her. She dropped the candle, and it was off. Mr. Peters, Amy, and Miss Marsh rush to help them. Betty was being sarcastic and said that Sara did not break her neck.
 
Jim asked for the first-aid box, which was under the pile of coats. He arranges the chair for Sara to lie down. Mr. Peters carried Sara out and said that she is feeling better now and was more scared than hurt. He placed Sara on the bed of chairs which Jim had made. Amy brought the lantern near Sara and said that she was glad that Miss. Marsh, the nurse, was there to attend the emergency. Miss. Marsh examined Sara. Sara was crying and said it hurts. Rose sat next to Sara and held her hand to comfort her. Jim and Betty stood behind.
 
Sara told everyone that it was her leg that is hurting. Miss. Marsh inspected Sara and told her that she had hurt her leg badly, but she would be fine soon and then to get into the boat to go home. Miss. Marsh asked Mr. Peters, Jim, and Amy to come aside as she wanted to tell that Sara has broken her right leg below the knee. She said that they could support the leg with the pillows and umbrella. So, they could get her into the boat. Sara needed to be taken into the emergency Red Cross hospital in the Armoury.
 
Mr. Peters suggested that they could take Rose and Betty along with Sara. Jim and Amy needed to stay there until they send another boat, or they could get back. Miss. Marsh arranges to splint Sara's right leg with pillow, cane and umbrella so that it is stiff. Jim says that he and Amy can stay back and wait for them while they take care of Sara and others. They said that they would hold back on the roof. Mr. Peter suggests that he can leave another lantern and a jar of coffee for them. He asks if they need anything else.
 
Amy liked Mr. Peters calm even in that situation. She said that she needed the calmness which Mr. Peters had and thanked him. Mr. Peters said that they had to express gratitude to the Red Cross, not him. He lifts Sara with the help of a blanket, which forms a stretcher for her. Miss Marsh takes her bag. Jim helps Mr. Peters carry Sara towards the boat without hurting her. Mr. Peters called Betty and Rose along. Rose takes her coat, but Betty even takes her dress box along with her overcoat. In drowsiness, Sara said that her leg stopped hurting Miss. Marsh gave her something.
 
Amy kissed Sara on the forehead and assured Sara that everything would be alright. Amy wished her to have a pleasant boat ride. She waves to Betty and Rose to say good-bye. Amy wanted Betty to tell her mother and Jim's family that they were alright. Betty said bye to Amy and hoped that they would find help soon as well. Rose said Good-bye and Good-luck to Amy. Amy responded, and the boat left. The boat made a loud noise, and then it was gone as they could hear the voices giving directions. Amy tried to light the lantern. Mr. Peter assures Jim that they will be fine.
 
Jim told him not to worry about them. The voices became distant, and the boat went out of sight. Amy lighted the lantern and blew out the candles; water was still dropping. Jim poured out the coffee for himself and Amy. He handed it over to Amy and raised the coffee like a toast. Jim said here's to the coffee, lantern, and the rescue mission. He said that he was glad that they were awake, and they had a well managed Disaster Committee. Amy added and said they had even the Red- Cross nurse for any medical emergency. Amy thanked God for everything. Both of them lift the coffee as if in a toast and drink standing.