At that point it was time for dinner, so all madness had to cease.
Following dinner and chores and etc. the activity began anew. It had became clear, by this point, that they were making preparations for a play they were going to put on. Which explains the tickets. And the sign near the kitchen table that said "chip bar," made by Mikey.
At this point I** was recruited to play the part of Zed the shepherd. (This perhaps needs a little explanation. Briefly: When the kids play make-believe Star Wars they all assign themselves (or are assigned by Daniel) parts to play. So, Daniel becomes (for example) Darth Vader. Mikey is Luke Skywalker. Mercy is Princess Leia. And Daniel asked me, once, "Who do you want to be, Daddy?" In a fit of goofiness, I proclaimed: "I'm Zed, the shepherd. What? There aren't any shepherds in Star Wars? They gotta eat, don't they? So they need farmers, and shepherds, right?" Hence, forevermore I am Zed when they play Star Wars. And, apparently, when they put on plays.) And Daniel wants me to practice with them. I see, to my surprise, that he has a whole script written out.
However, at this point I become embroiled in a marathon discipline session with Mercy so, despite Daniel's multiple requests, my practice has to wait until much later. When I'm finally able to join them, here's how it went:
Daniel first explains: "I'm Robo, and Michael is Robei." (Pronounced row-bee.)
Then he has us all get up on the fireplace, which is the stage. Then he begins, in a robot voice:
"Hello. We are Robots."
Then Mikey, in his robot voice: "We come to take over the world."
Then Daniel: "You're turn, Daddy."
So I comply, reading from the script, as Zed: "What do you mean, take over the world?"
Then Mikey and Danny, together: "You are about to die!"
Then - the Sound Off. Which, it turns out, is some kind of musical interlude that involves Danny, Mikey, and Mercy (if she can be persuaded) parading around the room chanting, "Robots! Robots!" until Danny decides that there has been enough, then he announces, "Half time!" (=intermission) whereupon we all remove ourselves to the chip bar, where there will be snacks during the performance the next day. Danny reminds us all: "Make sure to let the guests go first."
Then, after an appropriate half time, we return for the second act. It begins,
Danny: "Pistols out!"
Mikey: "It doesn't work!"
Me (as Zed): "Come on men. You're under arrest, Robots!"
And that's the end.
It was pretty awesome. Even more awesome was the fact that the next evening, after enough practice for both boys to memorize (!) their lines, we put on an actual performance (complete with actual snacks - it was hard to tear the boys away from them for the 2nd act) for Mommy, Josiah, James, and Grammy.
It was amazingly impressive - they made tickets, signs, Daniel wrote a script***, set up snacks, rehearsed many times, memorized their lines, and performed it. I'm still in awe.
***Here's the complete script. Front:
Robo: Hello. We are robots.
Robei: We come to take over the world.
Zed: What do you mean, take over the world?
Robo @ Robei: You are about to die!
I think the '@' is supposed to be an ampersand. Anyway, back:
Sound off: Robots, Robots! Half time!
Robo: Pistols out!
Robei: It dosen't work!!!??
Zed: Come on men. Your under arrest, Robots!