As I sat down on the couch, the blonde bombshell kicked off her heels and began to pour us drink. She looked dead tired, collapsing into the couch with drinks in hand as I began my interview.
"May I call you Ms. Monroe, or would you prefer Marilyn?" I asked.
She smiled, a white toothed grin that was molded for the silver screen. Sadness seeped from her eyes. "I would prefer neither, honestly, but call me whatever you'd like."
I smiled back, accepting the drink she offered. "Yes, ma'am." I said, raising the glass to her. She giggled. I began.
"First question- why did you move to Hollywood-"
She shuffled around in the seat next to me, almost spilling her drink as she made herself comfortable.
"-And what was the hardest part of moving here? Did it ever make you want to give up and go back home?"
She sighed, staring into space, swallowed by the couch corner she occupied.
"I had nothing in Los Angeles except for a stutter. I moved here because I wanted to be an actress since I was five years old. The world was horrible, so I always looked forward to going to the theatre so I could escape for a while. I sat right at the front, this little girl, staring at the screen so big. I was so alone. But I loved it. I still do. Hell, I died for it."
She watched as I scribbled down her answers. She looked like a child, her big eyes following my pen.
I asked another. "What was the hardest part of your career, up until your death?"
She sighed yet again, her eyes dull. These questions never came easy.
"I think the hardest part was knowing I would play the ditzy blonde again. No one knew how smart I was because they would never let me. I was a sex symbol, and I had to play dumb."
"Why did you keep accepting the roles? Why didn't you show everyone how smart you really were?"
She shook her head. "I was willing to do anything to accomplish my dream, even if that meant losing everything. I thought that if I played dumb, things would come easier. They didn't get easier, but it never hurt to try."
Gulping down mouthfuls of drink, she closed her eyes. I drank some too, the liquid burning my throat.
We sat in silence for a while, accepting the company of one another as a comfort of sorts. As the night grew darker, and as we continued pouring drinks until we emptied bottle after bottle, I grew more confident and personal with my questions to the dead actress.
"Did you know everyone still remembers you? Your grave is covered in lipstick kisses, your face is on shirts. They write books about you and make movies about you and dance around your cement handprints."
She stared. "Why would they do that?"
I laughed. "You were famous. You still are. We love you more and more every day. I am the luckiest person alive, because I'm able to talk to you. People would kill to be me. You rose against every obstacle, made a name for yourself, and you died a legend. We are still reeling over your death. You died so young."
I began to cry. She was only 36.
"Why did you die? Why?"
She wrapped her arms around me as I continued to cry, sobbing into her shoulder.
"You were my hero, Norma."
At the sound of that name, her breath hitched. "No one's called me Norma since I was a little girl." Five year old Norma Jeane wanted to be a movie star. She began to cry. We both sat on her couch, holding each other as we sobbed into empty whiskey bottles.
My time came to leave, to go back into my world and leave her here, wherever this was.
As we said goodbye, and as I thanked her for the interview and the numerous drinks, I asked her one more question.
"Would you rather be called Ms. Monroe, or Marilyn?"
She smiled, a true smile that beamed to the heavens above.
"Call me Norma."