Cora Darrow sat in front of her mirror. She was putting some makeup on. She was 22-years-old, only a few years younger than her older sister Anne. Suddenly, Cora's powder dumped onto the floor. Actually, it wasn't her powder at all. It was from sister's makeup for her vaudeville shows. Cora always wanted to be like Anne. Always wanted to be involved with vaudeville. As a dancer. Cora rushed to brush the powder up off the floor. She heard the door open and she knew it was Anne.
"Cora? Where are you?" Anne said.
"In my room. I'll be there in a second."
Cora finished cleaning up the powder and then went to greet Anne. She ran up to Anne and hugged her.
"Anne, I wanted to see you perform. Did the show end early?" Cora asked.
"There was no show, Cora. The theatre closed. It's all over."
"No! The theatre can't close. Think about all the people who need a laugh now more than ever. Think about the people without a job now. Manny, god love him, can't survive on the streets by himself. What about us? What do we have? A three room loft with no bathtub. We have to wash our hair in the sink, Anne! We can't live like this."
"I'll find a job, Cora. A job to support both of us."
"Why not let me work? I could work in a soup kitchen or perhaps dance for money. You know how I love to dance, Anne."
"You know that I promised Mom and Dad that I wouldn't put you through this. I told them that I would take care of both of us and I will."
"I'm twenty-two, Anne. I'm a big girl. Let me take care of myself."
"I'm sorry, Cora. I can't."
Cora bursted into tears and ran to her room. She flopped down on the bed and hugged her pillow.
"Cora, stop this. You say you're twenty-two and you're acting like a selfish child."
"For good reason. I deserve a job to! It seems like everyone is doing something and I'm stuck. Going absolutely nowhere. I'll be an old maid and I'll never be in the picture shows. Look at me. I'm dressed like an old hag."
"We can only afford these clothes."
"Well, no man would ever look at a girl who wears rags."
"Cora Louise Darrow. Sit up straight and look at me."
Cora wiped her tears away and then turned to Anne.
Cora sniffled. "I'm listening." She said.
"I know it's been hard since Mom and Dad died and I know we can't afford the finest things in life. We have each other. That should be enough for you."
"I love you, Anne. I really do. I just want better things. Is that so much to ask?"
"No. I promise, Cora, one day you will have those things and more. Now, you've gotta settle with what we do have, all right?"
"Are you hungry?"
"Great. I do have some soup."
"Yeah and some bread."
"It's a banquet! Where did you get the bread and soup?"
"I stole it."
"Stole it? Anne, you know that stealing is wrong."
"It's the only way to keep food on the table. Besides, I'll pay them back one day."
"One day? Anne, we can hardly afford clothes. We can't pay off debts!"
"I know, I know. It's alot to deal with but we CAN deal with it."
"Oh Anne, let's face it. If we don't find some money soon. You know we'll be out on the street. I hardly have enough in my piggy bank to pay off the landlord."
"We'll get by, Cora. I'll look for a job tomorrow. I promise."
"There's just no guartnee that you'll find one."
The next morning, Anne went looking for a job. Cora just laid in bed and waited impatiently for her sister's return. Finally, after six hours, Anne returned home. Cora ran to see if Anne had any good news.
"Did you find a job?" Cora asked.
"No, but I was offered one."
"What was it?"
"I was offered a job to star in a picture show. Directed by Carl Denham."
"Carl Denham? Anne, he's directed some of the greatest talking pictures! If you were in one of his pictures, you could be a star! So could I. This could be the chance we were meant to take. We'll be famous, Anne."
"I rejected the offer."
"Cora, can you possibly see me in a talking picture? I'd never make it."
"Anne, it's acting. You've been doing it all your life. You were in vaudeville, remember?"
"It's different. I won't have an audience."
"Yes you will. You just won't be able to see them."
"You don't understand, Cora. Hearing my audience laugh and smile. That's all I care about. I don't want the audience to walk out of the picture in tears. This is the Depression. I don't want to make it worse than it already is."
"Well, who's writing the picture?"
"Jack Driscoll! Anne, you love his plays. You'll probably get a chance to meet him."
"I know, but I can't do it."
"Anne Keira Darrow, you listen to me. A chance like this only comes once in a lifetime. You have got to take it, Anne."
"What about you?"
"I'll be okay. You'll only be gone to film the picture."
"There's something else I didn't mention. The picture is going to be filmed on location."
"Where? England? France?"
"An island. An island that may not even exist."
"It sounds insane. I can't leave you in New York if there is a chance I won't be back."
"Okay, then I'll come with you."
"Cora, you can't. It might be dangerous."
"Incase you haven't noticed, Anne. I'm a woman. Not a child. Let me come."
"If you promise to behave..."
"Oh thank you, Anne!"
Cora hugged Anne and then rushed to her room.
"Where are you going?"
"To pack my suitcase!"
The following evening, both Cora and Anne got into a taxi and went to the docks. Anne went to speak to Mr.Denham while Cora just stared up at the large ships.
"Hey lady!" The taxi driver said.
Cora, startled by the voice, turned back towards the taxi.
Cora rummaged through her purse but could only find one quarter.
"This is all I have."
Cora handed the quarter but the driver threw at her face. A man, who was standing nearby, witnessed this and stormed up to the taxi.
"Hey, what are you a kid? You just don't throw things at people because they don't have a few dollars on them. Everyone's broke nowadways if you hadn't noticed. If you want money..."
The man reached into his coat pocket and pulled out at least five dollars and then handed it to the taxi driver.
"I've got plenty of it. Now either apologize to this girl or I'll have your ass sued."
"Fine. I'm sorry."
The taxi took off.
"You okay?" The man asked.
"I'm fine. He didn't hurt me. Thanks for paying him."
"Did you really mean what you said? I mean about you suing his ass."
The man chuckled. "Well, I guess I did." He said.
"I'm surprised anybody has the money. What are you? A lawyer?"
Cora gasped in excitement and jumped off the ground.
"Oh, you must be Jack Driscoll. My sister Anne loves your plays. I must say that you're alot taller than I expected you to be, but that's just fine."
"Darrow. Cora Darrow."
Cora tucked her suitcase under her arm and gave Mr.Driscoll a firm handshake.
"You have quite a grip for a girl."
"Well, dancers are suppose to have good muscles. It's what keep us flexible."
"You're a dancer?"
"No, but I will be. As soon as Anne gets her big break, then I will get mine."
"Your sister, right?"
"Yeah. I know this really great tap dance! I saw it in a picture once."
Cora began dancing all around.
"Well, I suppose it's better in the picture."
"Nonsense. You're very good."
"It was wonderful to meet you, Cora."
Mr.Driscoll tipped his hat and walked away. Cora giggled and began to hum one of her favorite tunes that she had heard on the radio at the soup kitchen. As she began walking towards the boat, she collided with someone and all her clothes dumped out of her suitcase.
"Oh no. They're ruined." Cora said.
Cora kneeled down to pick up her clothes.
"My apologies." A voice said.
"Oh, it's okay. I'll just share clothes with my sister. She won't mind."
Cora finished packing her clothes back up.
"Let me help you." The voice said.
A hand suddenly took Cora's hand and helped her off the ground. Cora finally saw the source of the voice. It was a man. Not a young man by any means. He seemed to be a little bit older than Anne. Probably 30 or beyond. Either way, he was a bit handsome.
"Are you part of Mr.Denham's crew?" Cora asked.
"No. At least, not in the sense that you speak of. I'm captain of the Venture. It's the ship that the film crew will be on."
"So you're the Captain?"
"Yes mam. Are you to be aboard The Venture?"
"Yes. My sister Anne is the lead in Mr.Denham's picture."
"Well, then. I welcome you both aboard."
"Englehorn. Abraham Englehorn."
"Pleasure to meet you, Captain Englehorn. Can you show me where my cabin is?"
"I'd be honored. Think of it as an apology."
"Apology accepted." Cora said.