Mike and Hannah stood in a makeshift lab. Mike is holding a box with a button on it.
MIKE Yeah yeah yeah.
HANNAH Yep. Yeah.
MIKE Yep yep yep.
Mike moves to press the button.
HANNAH I’m not so sure!
MIKE I thought we agreed.
HANNAH We did agree, but now I’m not so sure.
MIKE You said yes quite a lot.
HANNAH There’s no dial.
MIKE We’ve been through. It doesn’t need a dial. It’s brainwaves.
HANNAH I don’t understand.
MIKE Remember what we said? Just close your eyes, think of the moment, and take a big deep breath. Okay?
MIKE Good, excellent.
HANNAH What if I die?
HANNAH I don’t want to die.
MIKE Why would you die?
HANNAH I don’t know.
MIKE You won’t die.
HANNAH How do you know?
MIKE Death is forwards. We’re going backwards.
HANNAH I’m scared.
MIKE I showed you the equation.
HANNAH Yes you did.
HANNAH I didn’t understand it.
MIKE You didn’t.
HANNAH I didn’t really get it.
MIKE Which bit?
HANNAH The equation.
MIKE The whole thing was an equation.
MIKE In what way did you not get it?
HANNAH In the normal way of not understanding a nine and a half page equation with no numbers in it.
MIKE What about the mix tape, didn’t that help?
HANNAH Did you listen to the mix tape?
Hannah shakes her head.
MIKE That took me like 6 hours.
HANNAH You’ll get all that time back though, right? When we.
MIKE Don’t use my theory against me.
HANNAH Sorry. I just don’t know if I can do this.
MIKE You said you wanted to try it.
HANNAH That’s when I thought it was a sex position.
MIKE A sex position?
HANNAH You said ‘would you like to try time travel?’
HANNAH That was directly after I’d said ‘would you like to try reverse cowgirl.’
MIKE I didn’t know what that meant. I was changing the subject. Listen, I’m trying to do something interesting here Hannah. I’m doing this for you.
HANNAH I appreciate the gesture.
MIKE After what you said.
HANNAH I didn’t mean ‘boring’, it was taken out of context.
MIKE What about ‘safe’?
HANNAH I didn’t mean it like that!
MIKE Now you’re worried about dying. You don’t want safe, you don’t want death. I mean make your mind up.
HANNAH I like safe, I’ve changed my mind. Safe is good.
MIKE I’m trying to be more interesting for you.
HANNAH You are more interesting for me!
MIKE More like Josh.
HANNAH Oh god.
MIKE I bet he was fascinating.
HANNAH Please don’t do this.
MIKE With his motorbike and his tattoo of a mermaid fighting a scorpion.
HANNAH Seriously Mike.
MIKE He may have had a motorbike but he didn’t have a time travel box, did he?
Mike waves the box.
HANNAH I don’t think so, no.
MIKE Who’s safe now then? Eh? Because it isn’t me!
HANNAH I like you being safe.
MIKE No, you were right. We’re very different people. We need to make an effort to.
HANNAH But I’m learning to accept you.
MIKE We said we’d try and change, adapt.
HANNAH I know.
MIKE I can be a bit safe according to you, whereas you can be a bit.
HANNAH I know.
MIKE Whiny and shallow.
MIKE I love you.
HANNAH Whiny and.
MIKE I think you’re amazing.
HANNAH Did you just call me.
MIKE But we’re trying to change, aren’t we? That’s the.
He gestures to the box.
MIKE Point of all.
HANNAH Shallow? How am I shallow?
MIKE Wait. No. Let’s just. We’re about to go to a time when I haven’t just called you whiny and shallow. Things were better then. So let’s.
He brings focus back to the box.
HANNAH And it definitely doesn’t need a dial, or.
MIKE Definitely not.
HANNAH Some sort of clock, so we can.
MIKE Just your brainwaves. All you have to do is think.
HANNAH What if I think about the sixties?
MIKE What reason would you have to do that?
HANNAH Because it was cool. You know, free love.
MIKE Free love?
HANNAH Woodstock, the Beatles.
MIKE Why do you want free love?
HANNAH I just mean the whole vibe, you know. The attitude, the clothes, the music.
MIKE Am I not enough for you.
HANNAH What if I think about a time before I was even born? Before my mum was even born? And then I don’t get born because my mum never meets my dad? What if I think myself out of existence? I’d feel awful.
MIKE You wouldn’t feel awful.
HANNAH I’d feel pretty bad.
MIKE You wouldn’t feel anything. You wouldn’t even know that you weren’t feeling anything. You’d have no concept of anything because you wouldn’t be a thing Hannah!
HANNAH But I like being a thing! See, this is what you don’t seem to understand about women.
MIKE No, I get it!
HANNAH I’m not sure you do.
MIKE You like existing, I understand. We all like being a thing. I’m just saying.
HANNAH Always saying, never listening are you?
MIKE Don’t think about a time before you were born, okay? There. Think about a more recent time, preferably when monogamy was in fashion.
MIKE Don’t apologise. I just. You said you wanted to do this.
HANNAH I do.
MIKE Then let’s do it.
HANNAH What if I think of a time when I was still with Josh?
MIKE Why would you say that?
MIKE We agreed on a time anyway. We said we’d think of that time.
HANNAH We did, I know.
MIKE With the big oak tree and the sunset.
HANNAH Yes. Yeah.
MIKE And the two squirrels were.
HANNAH I remember now. I remember.
MIKE Honestly Hannah.
HANNAH I’m sorry. Okay.
MIKE Right. Look at me. Just think about that moment. Don’t think about the sixties or anything else, just.
HANNAH Think about it.
MIKE Using your brain.
HANNAH Don’t patronise me Michael.
MIKE Sorry, just. Put your hands.
She lays her hands on the box. He’s about to press it when she removes her hands.
HANNAH I need to think about this.
MIKE You do, yes. Now you’re getting it.
HANNAH No I mean think it through.
MIKE We have thought it through.
HANNAH No I mean really. Sleep on it or something.
MIKE Listen I don’t want to freak you out or anything but we actually don’t have much time.
HANNAH I thought we have all the time in the world. I thought time is on our side.
MIKE Ah, so you did listen to the mixtape.
HANNAH I read the track list.
MIKE Anyway I mean right now. Right in this. I don’t know, dimension. We have to leave.
HANNAH Why? What’s the rush?
MIKE Okay. When I finished building the box, I got a bit, um, psyched.
MIKE Yeah. You know, psyched. Like, wooo!
HANNAH I don’t think I’ve ever seen you get psyched.
MIKE Well I was pretty psyched anyway.
HANNAH Really? Are you sure it was psyched?
MIKE Listen, I was psyched okay? I know what psyched is.
HANNAH If you say so.
MIKE And you know when you get really psyched about something.
MIKE And you just have an overwhelming urge to.
MIKE Trash a motorcycle.
HANNAH You didn’t.
MIKE As a kind of catharsis.
HANNAH Oh Michael.
MIKE I was psyched. I can’t be blamed.
HANNAH You trashed his Flamer. I can’t believe it.
MIKE His Flamer?
HANNAH That’s his entire life.
MIKE Bit Freudian, Flamer.
HANNAH It has flames on the side.
MIKE Not anymore.
HANNAH How did you do it? I mean how did you physically.
MIKE With a brick. Half a brick. Yeah.
HANNAH What, and you just.
MIKE Went for it. Don’t know if I broke anything. You know, important. Or valuable. Paintwork’s completely.
HANNAH He will kill you.
MIKE Not if we do this now.
HANNAH You’re crazy.
MIKE I know.
HANNAH He’s a big guy.
Mike drops the grin.
MIKE I know.
HANNAH I mean he’s really big.
MIKE I thought you weren’t into really big guys.
HANNAH No I love your shape. I’m just saying. He’s really big. Really big.
MIKE I get it, thanks. He’s bigger than me.
MIKE Wait, is he. Bigger than me?
HANNAH Oh for god’s sake Michael.
MIKE Nothing, no. Forget I said. Let’s just.
He nods to the box.
HANNAH He’ll come for you. He’ll be after you.
MIKE Exactly, so we should.
HANNAH That was a silly thing to do, wasn’t it?
MIKE Well perhaps it wasn’t the most.
HANNAH It was really silly.
MIKE I think I’ve made up for it by placing myself at the forefront of human scientific endeavour.
He holds up the box.
HANNAH Still. Bit childish.
MIKE We’re going back to a time before it happened. His motorbike will be fine. He’ll still be living with his mum, and he’ll still have three GCSEs.
HANNAH Now you are being childish.
MIKE One of which was a C in dance.
HANNAH He has a very kind heart.
MIKE Great. That’ll get him out of the Morrisons deli counter.
MIKE I love you. I’m sorry.
HANNAH I love you too.
MIKE I just, I really want us to do this.
HANNAH Me too.
MIKE I’m excited for our future. By which I mean the past. And once we know it works we can go to any time we want.
HANNAH Once we know it works!?
MIKE It does work. It definitely works. Ignore that. Just think, okay?
HANNAH Of the moment.
MIKE Picture the big squirrel and the little squirrel fighting over the.
MIKE And the big oak tree.
HANNAH I’m worried I’ll overshoot.
MIKE Don’t overshoot.
HANNAH I’m worried I’ll go too far back in time.
MIKE Don’t go too far back, just think. Breathe.
She closes her eyes. Places her hands on the box.
MIKE Good, here goes. Hannah?
MIKE This is the start of an amazing adventure.
With great ceremony, he presses the box. They appear to momentarily pass out on their feet. They come round and blink at their surroundings, taking everything in. Their eyes settle on each other.
After a moment.
MIKE So you’re absolutely sure you’re prepared to do this?