[SCENE I. MELISSA’s bedroom. FUTURE MELISSA is lying on the bed while PAST MELISSA admires her costume in the mirror.]
PAST MELISSA: Where did you get this, anyway?
FUTURE MELISSA: I didn’t. I just took it home with me after the party. (Beat.) Well, except for the mask. The wizard gave me that just now to give to you. Apparently it’s important that you wear it and then take it off before going home.
PAST MELISSA: That’s worryingly specific. Did you–(Both of their phones start ringing.)
MELISSAE: (In unison.) Oh, hang on. (They answer their phones.) Hello?
JEREMY: Melissa? (Beat.) I’m talking to both of you somehow, aren’t I? I’d like to speak to Melissa from the present, please.
(PAST MELISSA rolls her eyes and hangs up.)
FUTURE MELISSA: Something the matter?
JEREMY: Well, Gavin mentioned this whole time travel thing, and I tried calling the wizard, but he didn’t answer his phone. I wondered if you’d seen him.
FUTURE MELISSA: Yeah, he stopped by this morning to give me some instructions. You’re not worried, are you? I don’t answer my phone all the time.
JEREMY: Yes, but you’re not the wizard. I think his phone is rigged to stop time when someone calls. I don’t think I’ve ever called him and had him not answer. So either he’s ignoring my calls–
FUTURE MELISSA: Or something’s happened to him. I see. Well, look, I can help you look for him after the party tonight, but it’s sort of important that I’m there.
JEREMY: Because of the time travel thing?
FUTURE MELISSA: Right. Look, I’m sorry I can’t–
JEREMY: That’s just it. I think maybe it’s related.
FUTURE MELISSA: Really?
JEREMY: Well, it does fit the available evidence.
FUTURE MELISSA: I really can’t–
JEREMY: Look, just meet me at the Jaded Old Crone in like half an hour. Please?
FUTURE MELISSA: All right. But no promises.
JEREMY: Right, till then.
FUTURE MELISSA: Later. (She hangs up and sighs.) Try as I might to convince people I’m a dangerous sociopath, they still ask me for help.
PAST MELISSA: Trouble?
FUTURE MELISSA: Jeremy thinks the wizard’s gone missing.
PAST MELISSA: Maybe he’s just on a motorcycle tour again?
FUTURE MELISSA: Unlikely. (Beat.) I wonder if that was even the wizard I spoke to this morning, then. He was acting a bit strange.
PAST MELISSA: Stranger than usual?
FUTURE MELISSA: Right. Anyway, are you coming? We might need to disguise you a bit so it’s not obvious that you’re me.
PAST MELISSA: I think I’ll stay here. You never know what might come up.
FUTURE MELISSA: Fair enough. (She departs. PAST MELISSA flops down on the bed after she departs and stares thoughtfully at the ceiling.)
[SCENE II. The Jaded Old Crone. JEREMY and CELESTE are already seated and drinking coffee when FUTURE MELISSA arrives.]
CELESTE: Hello, Melissa.
MELISSA: Gotharella! Jeremy didn’t mention you’d be here.
JEREMY: If the wizard’s in trouble we could use someone like her on our side.
MELISSA: Fair enough. Any news?
CELESTE: I tried contacting him using . . . alternative means.
CELESTE: All right, fine, using magic.
MELISSA: No luck?
CELESTE: Well, I couldn’t get a hold of the wizard. But I was able to detect . . . something.
(MELISSA looks about to say something snide, but a look from JEREMY stops her. She smirks instead.)
CELESTE: There’s powerful magic happening in Portland right now. I think I can triangulate its source by tonight.
MELISSA: Well, you’d better. The portal into the past opens tonight at midnight at Gavin’s party. (Beat.) I was talking to myself earlier and I made a somewhat worrying revelation.
CELESTE: What’s that?
MELISSA: It’s a moment where you realize something important.
CELESTE: (Narrows her eyes.) I mean, what was your revelation?
MELISSA: Oh! I think the wizard I talked to this moment wasn’t, you know, the wizard. He was acting funny.
CELESTE: What did he tell you?
MELISSA: Only some basic stuff. He gave me a mask to give to myself to wear at the party before sending myself into the past.
JEREMY: I think maybe you should not do what he says. Just in case.
MELISSA: He said the entire timeline would collapse if I didn’t.
CELESTE: You are familiar with the concept of ‘lies’?
MELISSA: (Sighs.) Fine. I’ll tell myself not to wear it. But if the timeline collapses I’m blaming you. (She gets out her phone and begins texting.)
CELESTE: Noted. Oh, and you probably shouldn’t tell anyone we know about this. You might be able to get more information out of the false wizard if you’re clever.
MELISSA: Please. I’m always clever.
[SCENE III. SARAH and MELISSA’s house. SARAH and PAST MELISSA are sitting on the couch downstairs chatting.]
SARAH: So, there’s a fake wizard giving you advice on what to wear at parties.
MELISSA: Weird, right?
(MELINA enters, and looks MELISSA over.)
LINA: You know, I never appreciated it before, but you have lost a lot of weight in the past year.
MELISSA: Actually, I’m from–
LINA: The past. I know.
MELISSA: So were you saying–
LINA: Yes. (She sits down.) You could go get me a beer, though.
(MELISSA glares and heads into the kitchen.)
SARAH: The wizard’s gone missing, probably.
LINA: Has he, now.
SARAH: Apparently. (Beat.) Could you really tell that was past-Melissa just from looking at her?
LINA: Ha! No, Lissa sent me a text. It seemed like a good time to make a fat joke.
SARAH: That’s cruel. I wish I’d thought of it.
LINA: You can try it on present-Melissa if you like. Free of charge.
(MELISSA returns and tosses a beer at LINA, who catches it without looking. MELISSA then sits back down and opens her own beverage.)
LINA: So, what’s the plan?
MELISSA: Well, apparently future-me and friends want me to just go to the party and not wear that mask and see what happens.
LINA: That sounds like a good idea. What are you going to do instead?
MELISSA: Well, I figure, if someone’s trying to mess with our timeline, there’s one surefire way to fix it.
LINA: And what’s that?
MELISSA: Send someone else through the portal.
SARAH: Oh, please don’t. I don’t want the timeline to collapse.
MELISSA: Sometimes we have to make sacrifices, small friend.
SARAH: (Winces.) You stopped calling me that, remember?
MELISSA: Maybe future-me did, because she is boring and dumb. I, however, still think it’s great.
SARAH: Fair enough, large friend.
MELISSA: Anyway. I’ve alerted myself to this new plan. I’m sure nothing could possibly go wrong.
LINA: I’m sure.