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Needles (11-14s)

It’s Christmas Eve and all the lights are out. When the clock strikes midnight, ten kids get out of bed. They can’t sleep, but it’s nothing to do with Santa Claus - there’s something calling for them out on the streets, something lurking in the shadows. If only they can make it disappear before Christmas morning…


A small town

First produced

December 2022; directed by Amy Wilson


Drama, Horror, Christmas

Cast Size


Recommended for performers aged


Running Time

60 minutes

Recommended for audiences aged


Script Extract:



Christmas Eve. 23.59. ‘I’ll Be Home for Christmas’ (Bing Crosby) is playing.

Everyone is asleep in their beds. When the clock strikes midnight, there’s the sound of a record scratching and the music stops playing. There’s a vibration in the air. Stella sits up. She looks at the time, confused. We feel the vibration again. Stella reacts strongly. She’s scared. She turns to her sibling.


Stella:             Pip… Pip, wake up.

Pip groans.


Pip, you have to wake up —

Pip:                 Just one more minute…

Stella:             I’m being serious.

Pip groans louder.


Stella:             Come on, Pip – wake up…

Pip:                 Is it Christmas?

Stella:             No…

Pip:                 Don’t wake me until it’s Christmas, Stella.

Stella:             Oh come on, Pip.

Pip:                 I’m tired…

Stella:             Something weird is going on.

Pip:                 What do you mean, weird?


Stella:             It feels weird. Everything feels… Weird. I woke up at midnight – exactly at midnight, by the second – and there’s something in the air – I can’t describe it. It feels… unnatural.

Pip:                 You’ve probably just had too much dinner.

Stella:             You’re not listening to me.

Pip:                 Is it the dark?

Stella (hesitant): No. Something is going on.

Pip:                 You probably just had a nightmare.


Stella:             I didn’t. Can’t you feel it?

A vibration runs through the air. Pip shivers. They can feel it too now. 


Pip:                 I’m sure it’s nothing.

Stella:             What if it isn’t?

Pip:                 Relax. We’ll figure it out — Oh. Look…

They point out the window.


Why are all of the lights off?

Stella:             I don’t know.

Pip:                 Even the streetlights. Do you think it’s a power cut?

Stella:             On Christmas eve?

Pip:                 Bad timing.

Stella:             It’s…weird. All of this.

Pip:                 Don’t worry, Stella. It’ll be fine —

Stella:             I don’t know…

Pip:                 It’ll be okay.

Stella:             We should do something.



Pip:                 Well, what do you want to do?

Stella:             Let’s wake mum and dad.

They exit.



Down the road, Kes is throwing pebbles on Michael’s window. Mey and Nora are standing next to her. They’re carrying torches.

Nora:              Careful.

Kes:                I am careful.

Mey:                No you’re not. You’re gonna hit him on the head.

Michael opens his window. He gets a pebble right in the face.


Michael:         Ouch!

Mey:                Told you.

Kes:                Michael!

Michael:         Who’s there?

Kes:                Who does it look like?

Michael:         Kes…? What are you doing here? It’s the middle of the night —

Nora:              Are your parents awake?

Michael:         I don’t think so

Kes:                Try to wake them.

Michael:         Why?

Nora:              Just try.

Michael disappears.

Kes:                I hate this.

Mey:                Me too.


Kes:                Maybe his family is fine. Maybe it’s all just a coincidence.


Nora:              Do you really believe that?


Kes:                Shut up, Nora.


Michael appears in the window again.

Michael:         They won’t wake up – I shook them really hard – they just won’t – what do I do?

Mey:                Calm down…

Michael:         What do we do – we have to call an ambulance — or the police —

Mey:                We’ve tried the police and the hospital. No one is picking up. All the lines are dead.

Kes:                We’re the only ones awake.


Michael:         What if they’re dead?

Mey:                They’re not. They’re still breathing. It’s like they’re in a coma.

Nora:              Our parents are like that too.


Adam and Rhoda enter. They’re alternative kids, wearing black clothes and band t-shirts.

Adam:             Same as ours.

Rhoda:            And all the other houses on this street. No one’s awake.


Kes:                Great. The local emo band has decided to join us.

Rhoda:            Shut up, Kes

Nora:              Did you wake up at midnight too?

Adam:             Bang on the dot.

Michael:         What do we do?

Mey:                Quiet!  (Beat. We can hear the vibrations again.) Can anyone else feel that? (Beat) Something’s here.

Kes:                What do you mean?

Mey:                There’s something… I don’t know, I have this feeling — it feels off, everything feels off, like… I don’t know, like —

Nora:              Like someone’s watching us.


Everyone is scared, they scuff in together. The Other’s presence is clear. The streetlights flicker. The vibrations get a little louder. In the moments of darkness, Nora disappears. We hear The Other whisper, but it doesn’t sound like words.


Kes:                Oh my god… Oh my god… Did you guys hear that?!

Michael:         What the hell is going on?

Rhoda:            Guys. Where’s Nora?

Everyone looks around.


Adam:             Oh shit.


Michael:         She was right there…

Rhoda:            Well, she’s not anymore.


Kes:                Come back Nora, this isn’t funny — I’ll kill you if you’re messing with us —


Rhoda:            I don’t think she’s messing with us.

Michael:         Where is she, then?

Kes:                Nora…? Nora you idiot —


Mey:                Insulting her isn’t going to bring her back —


Rhoda:            This doesn’t feel right.

Adam:             We should get out of here

Michael:         What about my parents? I can’t just leave them —

Mey:                What about Nora?

Rhoda:            We can come back for them — but we should go —


Kes:                Where?

The vibrations appear again.


Rhoda:            I don’t know.

Everyone starts moving except for Mey.

Mey:                Kes–

Kes:                I don’t want to disappear too…

Adam:             Come on.

Mey reluctantly joins them. Everyone runs off stage together.

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