[SCENE I. The Jaded Old Crone. KELLY is having dinner with NICHOLAS and CHARLOTTE. KELLY is distractedly poking at her meal while the couple chat animatedly. CHARLOTTE seems to sense that something is amiss.]
CHARLOTTE: You seem quiet, Kelly.
KELLY: Don’t worry about it.
NICHOLAS: She’s been like this all week. I figure it’s the looming shadow of graduation and the ominous prospect of leaving the structured world we live in for the first eighteen years of our lives. Soon she will be unceremoniously thrust into a world where we have to make choices based on incomplete information, choosing from among dozens of options, knowing that the choice she makes will shape the rest of her life.
KELLY: You’ve been saving that one up for a while, haven’t you?
NICHOLAS: I was hoping you’d bring it up first. I just wanted you to know that despair is a perfectly logical response.
KELLY: Well, it’s not that.
NICHOLAS: There’s no shame in existential dread, little sister.
KELLY: I miss Celeste. All these graduation pamphlets reminded me of her, is all. We were going to–
NICHOLAS: (To CHARLOTTE.) Clearly just a specific manifestation of her broader fears of her imminent transformation into a cog.
CHARLOTTE: Did Celeste move away?
KELLY: Something like that.
CHARLOTTE: I find the best way to get over a lost friend is to do something to put your mind off it. I’m sure we can think of something.
NICHOLAS: No offense, Charlotte, but I don’t think she’ll like being a third wheel.
CHARLOTTE: I think she’d be happier without you along, dear.
NICHOLAS: All right, I kind of walked into that one.
(Beat. MELISSA enters the restaurant dramatically.)
MELISSA: Nicholas! I need your help! (She eyes CHARLOTTE.) If you’re not too busy with your new bottle blonde to help a friend in need.
CHARLOTTE: Ah. Melissa. How charming.
(CHARLOTTE and MELISSA exchange glares for a moment. MELISSA sits down next to KELLY, who is suddenly focused on eating her meal.)
MELISSA: You should have gotten an assistant ages ago, Nicholas. It makes dramatic entrances so much easier.
NICHOLAS: What do you want, Melissa?
MELISSA: World peace?
MELISSA: (Sighs.) Fine. I need your Eagle Scout expertise. (Beat.) Or I guess I could borrow Kelly. I like her better anyway.
KELLY: (Brightens. With a mouthful of food.) Oh, I’d love to help!
NICHOLAS: I’m busy anyway.
KELLY: What do you need?
MELISSA: I . . . you’d better come and see. (She rises.) I’ll be at my house. Thanks, mini-Hayes. (She departs.)
CHARLOTTE: Shouldn’t you have stopped talking to her by now?
NICHOLAS: I have done everything in my power short of selling my soul to the Devil to make her go away. It didn’t work.
KELLY: Probably because you only hate her every other week. The rest of the time–(NICHOLAS kicks her under the table.)–ow! (She goes back to eating.)
NICHOLAS: It would be nice if you two would get along. Melissa’s not a terrible person most of the time.
CHARLOTTE: I’ll try. The withering glares might make things difficult.
NICHOLAS: I’m sure you’ll find a way.
[SCENE II. MELISSA and SARAH’s house. For some reason the floor seems to be overgrown with various flowers and vines. MELISSA is lying on the couch, drinking a beer. MELINA is going at the vines with some gardening shears. The flowers seem to lead upstairs.]
LINA: This is why you don’t fuck flowers, Lissa.
MELISSA: She didn’t fuck any flowers.
LINA: Fairies? Goblins?
MELISSA: There was no fucking involved.
(A knock on the door. MELISSA stands up and answers the door. KELLY looks startled that the door was answered so quickly, then looks confused at the plants growing inside.)
KELLY: So, uh, redecorating?
MELISSA: Come upstairs.
KELLY: Listen, if you’re trying to get me to bed–
LINA: Just do as she says. I’m not a gardener.
(KELLY and MELISSA walk upstairs. MELINA follows at a distance. They follow the flowers to SARAH’s room, and find her lying on her bed, apparently asleep. She is wrapped in blankets and shivering; flowers appear to be growing out of the blankets.)
MELISSA: She’s been like this since we got back from our vacation last night. Started small and got worse.
LINA: And they teach you all about goblin-transmitted diseases in girl scout camp, don’t they?
KELLY: Not . . . exactly.
MELISSA: I need help, Kelly.
LINA: Even some tips on flower arrangement would be helpful.
KELLY: I’ll look into it. I don’t know how much I can do, but–
MELISSA: Let me know if there’s anything I can do.
KELLY: Just shoot me an email of everything you can remember about your trip. I’ll see if I can piece it together.
MELISSA: All right. But, in the interests of full disclosure, I may not have been entirely sober for the majority of the time we were there.
KELLY: I’ll make do. (Beat.) Do you think I could speak with her? When she’s awake, I mean, I wouldn’t–
MELISSA: I don’t see why not, if you really want to hang around.
LINA: You can use our computer if you need.
MELISSA: After I’ve emailed you of course. (Beat.) I feel like there are better ways to transmit information than this.
LINA: Beggars and choosers, Lissa.
(They head downstairs.)
KELLY: So, why did you think a girl scout should know anything about this?
MELISSA: Because I didn’t have any better ideas?
LINA: She was going to summon the goblin king, but she thought that might be a bad idea.
KELLY: (An idea occurs.) Yes, yes it might.
MELISSA: So, can we get you something to eat or drink? We have, uh . . . .
LINA: (Digging around in the fridge.) There’s beer. And I think some bread and peanut butter.
MELISSA: Sarah was going to go shopping when we got home.
LINA: I love it when a plan works out. (She hands KELLY a beer.) You didn’t get this from me.
KELLY: Um, thanks.
LINA: I’m going to the store to get some real food. You two have fun.
(LINA departs. MELISSA flops back down on the couch, and KELLY sits down at the computer and pulls up Wikipedia to begin her research.)