Complicated, Act I, Scene 10

The stage is set like the ballroom from scene 2. Everyone is dancing to pop music. Jackie and Gwendolyn go to the punch bowl.

GWENDOLYN: Hey, we get to try the punch this time!

Gwendolyn hands Jackie a cup of punch.

JACKIE: Cheers! But that does remind me, where are the mischievous madams?

GWENDOLYN: Off causing trouble, where else would they be?

JACKIE: Well, obviously they’re up to no good, but I just need to know if they’re breaking any laws or in any actual danger.

GWENDOLYN: I think they’re smart enough not to get involved in that sort of business.

Jackie looks doubtful. Suddenly, they hear a very shrill laugh. They see Lacy running towards them holding a black, leather journal. NEVILLE (a brunette, curly haired man in a military uniform) chases after her. Lacy hands Jackie the book.

LACY: Don’t let him have this!

Lacy giggles and runs off. Neville comes up to Jackie and Gwendolyn.

NEVILLE: Have you ladies seen my book? It’s black, leather-

Jackie hands the book to him.

JACKIE: Here. We don’t want part of your strange little game.

NEVILLE: Sorry, I didn’t want to play, but she took it as I was writing in it.

GWENDOLYN: What would prompt you to start writing at a party?

NEVILLE: Oh, it’s…a book of poetry. I write when the mood strikes me.

JACKIE: Ah, the sensitive military man!

NEVILLE: I guess. I’m Neville, by the way. Neville Hawley.

GWENDOLYN: I’m Gwendolyn Fulton, and this is Jacqueline Goodman.

JACKIE: Please, call me Jackie.

NEVILLE: Okay, Jackie. Well, it was nice meeting you.

Neville leaves.

JACKIE: He’s cute.

GWENDOLYN: Yes, but if you’re thinking of pursuing him, just remember who he was flirting with before he saw you.

JACKIE: I think he’s deep. He’s the type of guy that doesn’t embrace chauvinistic ideals and isn’t afraid to show his sensitive side. He’s tough but gentle. That seems like the kind of guy that would treat me like an equal and help me spread some of my feminist ideas.

GWENDOLYN: Oh, you still believe in true love like that, huh? Not me, I just want to find a guy with a nice, stable job and who owns his own house. I’ll never have to worry about finances, and that’s good enough for me.

JACKIE: Whatever. Why don’t we go dance?

Jackie and Gwendolyn go to the dance floor and dance. After a minute, Phillip comes up to Jackie.

PHILLIP: May I have this dance?

JACKIE: I thought you don’t dance.

PHILLIP: Please, I’d be honored if you danced with me.

GWENDOLYN: He’d be honored, you should go! I can dance alone.

Jackie reluctantly agreed to dance with him. Gwendolyn looked amused and found another group to dance with. Jackie looks a little uncomfortable while Phillip seems a little nervous.

PHILLIP: So, you’re going to the University of Surrey?

JACKIE: Yes.

PHILLIP: I just graduated from there. I studied French.

JACKIE: French? What career are you planning with that?

PHILLIP: I’m not. I just thought it was interesting. Don’t worry, I won’t be scraped for cash because I’ll take over my father’s wine industry someday.

JACKIE: That’s good.

PHILLIP: So, what are you going to do after you get your degree?

JACKIE: Hopefully get a job that can help the feminist movement.

PHILLIP: Are you staying in England?

JACKIE: Yes, why would I move?

PHILLIP: I don’t know, a lot of people end up moving. My cousin went to Boston. He likes living in the States.

JACKIE: Good for him.

Jackie looks around the room and sees only Angela.

JACKIE: Uh oh.

PHILLIP: What’s wrong?

JACKIE: Have you seen Lacy?

PHILLIP: Last I saw, she was chasing that scoundrel, Neville, out of the room.

Jackie looks worried.

PHILLIP: Maybe they went to the library with Hailey?

JACKIE: Yeah, maybe.

Jackie still looks worried. The song ends.

PHILLIP: Thank you for the dance.

JACKIE: You’re welcome.

Jackie rushes over to Gwendolyn. Gwendolyn looks like she wants to gossip but then sees the look on Jackie’s face.

GWENDOLYN: What happened?

JACKIE: Lacy disappeared with a boy.

GWENDOLYN: Let’s look for her. Wait, there she is re-entering the party.

Lacy enters, and Jackie confronts her immediately.

JACKIE: Where were you?

LACY: In the library. Where else would I be? I don’t know this place too well!

Jackie did not believe her, but she cannot think of an argument. She shakes her head and goes back to Gwendolyn.

GWENDOLYN: Well, at least Angela was surrounded by too many boys to sneak away!

Jackie laughs. Daniel and Kate go up to a microphone, and Daniel talks into it.

DANIEL: Okay, glad you’re all having a good time! Now it’s time to move this party to the dining hall for presents and cake.

Daniel holds Kate’s hands and leads the group into the next room.

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