Time travellers

By David Ruddock


A light-hearted nativity play where two children are taken back in time to see the first Christmas.


Jane and Michael,
The apprentice,
Mary and Joseph,
Donkeys (e.g. 2 little ones),
3 shepherds.


(Setting: In the children's bedroom, and around Bethlehem.)

Scene 1 - In the Children's bedroom

(Jane and Michael both lying in beds)

Jane: An Xbox 360! You never!

Michael: Yeah - I heard them whispering about it.

Jane: And what about me, what am I getting?

Michael: A pony!

Jane: Really, a pony. Fabulous! I can't believe it, just what I've always wanted. A pony - wow!

Michael: Erm...(teasing) My little...

Jane: Michael, you beast! (Michael sniggers)

Mother: (Calling from off stage) You two! Don't make me have to come in there again and tell you. It's time for bed.

Jane: (Whispering) Seriously Michael, do you know what I'm getting?

Michael: (Teasing chant) My little pony, my little pony. I can't believe you believed me.

Jane: Oh shut it - will you.

Mother: (Enters) Both of you, please - settle down. If you don't get some sleep you won't have any fun tomorrow - and no presents. Now, in bed!

Michael: But I can't sleep Mum, I'm too excited.

Jane: Yes Mum - please tell me what I'm getting tomorrow.

Mother: For the last time - I'm not telling you a thing. You'll just have to wait. I'm turning the lights off now - so to bed, both of you. (Leaves)

(Jane and Michael get into bed. Lie still for a while)

Michael: (Sniggers) My little pony...

Jane: Shhh...

(After a while there's a tapping at the window)

Jane: Michael - Is that you?

Michael: No.

(More tapping.)

Jane: Michael! Will you just go to sleep.

Michael: I'm telling you - it's not me. (Gets out of bed.) It's coming from over here. (Shocked) Jane look. There are some people outside the window.

Jane: Michael, be careful.

Michael: (Opens window) Hello. Who are you? (Looks down out the window) And what are you doing outside a first floor window.

Tempus: (Mysteriously) It's me - "Tempus". I've come to take you on a journey. May we come in?

Jane: Michael. Don't let her, it's not safe.

Michael: Jane - It'll be okay. Come in, come in.

(Tempus jumps in through the window followed by apprentice)

Tempus: Jane, don't be afraid - you're quite safe. Oh, and meet my apprentice. (Looking around) What a lovely room you have here. Very nice indeed. Stockings not out yet, I see.

Apprentice: (Copying) Stockings not out yet, I see?

Tempus: (Encouraging) That's very good - though you don't need to copy everything I do.

Apprentice: Sorry

Tempus: Now, where was I. Ah yes - the journey. Now you had better get your dressing gown and slippers on - it's cold outside.

Apprentice: Yes - very cold. (Everyone looks at the apprentice)... Sorry.

Tempus: (Looking at a pocket watch) Oh gosh, we must be quick - we've got no time to lose. (To herself, chuckling) In fact, you could say we need to find time!

(She holds out her hands to Jane and Michael and they leap out the window.)

Scene 2 - Outside Bethlehem

(A pregnant Mary and Joseph and a little donkey (eg. two little ones + leader))

Mary: Joseph quick - I can't hold on any longer. (Holding tummy) I can feel it's coming.

Joseph: Mary, I'm so sorry. I didn't think it would take as long as it has. This old beast just won't go any faster. The salesman wasn't joking when he said it was a "little donkey".

Mary: We have to stop here - I can't go on.

Joseph: You're right, Mary, we won't get to my folks in time. Let me just ask at this inn - they may have a room we can use. I don't want it to all happen out here in the open.

Mary: Ok - but be quick. (Joseph run off. Mary leans against a boulder and groans). Joseph! Come on! (Joseph runs back in after a while)

Joseph: Mary, there are no rooms here - but we're in luck. He has a shelter he uses for his animals in the winter. He gave me the key. It's just down this track (pointing. Mary staggers off with Joseph helping her.)

Donkey: (Both standing up to sing) Little donkey, little donkey. On a dusty road, got to keep on, plodding onwards with your precious load. Ring out those bells to night, Bethlehem, Bethlehem. Little Donkey, little Donkey. On the dusty... ( Joseph coming back in again interrupts)

Joseph: Will you stop this hanging around. You've made us late enough as it is. Come on. (He leaves)

Donkey 1: He's just jealous - he doesn't have a singing part.

Donkey 2: Yeah - and no funny lines. (Both leave)

Scene 3 - Outside the stable

(Michael, Jane, Tempus and the apprentice tumble onto the stage looking dizzy and confused.)

Michael: Wow - that was cool. Talk about the best ride of your life. Now where are we?

Apprentice: (Groans) Urrrh. I feel sick

Tempus: (Dusting herself off) Yes, not one of the perks of the job - however, you get used to it.

Jane: Look at that quirky little house - they don't make them like that any more. Where did you say we are?

Tempus: Hmmm - that's a good question. (Excited) Now an even better question is when are we?

Michael: (Leading) ...andů

Tempus: "And" what?

Michael: You've not told us where or when we are.

Tempus: We're here - at the first Christmas.

Michael: The first Christmas! Wow. I've always wanted to know what the real Santa looks like. I bet you he isn't half as fat as they make him out.

Jane: And I can finally ask him face to face why he ignored all those letters I sent him asking for a pony.

Tempus: You two must be mistaken - you won't find Santa here. Look, here's our first stop - meeting the locals.

(Two shepherds walk in, both wearing tea towels on heads. They stop in front of the 3 - totally ignoring them.)

Shepherds1: I'm telling you that is what they said.

Shepherd 2: "Today the Saviour has been born - the one we've all been waiting for. And you will find him in a cow shed?"

Shepherd 1: Yep.

Shepherd 2: An Angel told you that?

Shepherd 3: Not just one - a whole load of them.

Michael: (Laughing) Why are they wearing tea towels on their heads?

Jane: Shhh, Michael. They'll hear you if you don't pipe down.

Tempus: No, no. Don't worry they can't see or hear you at all.

Michael: You're joking!

Tempus: No - not a bit.

Michael: Cool. (Bouncing over to Shepherd 2 - waving his hand in front of his face) He-llo. Can - you - see - me?

Shepherd 2: (Looking past Michael) OK - let me get this straight. You're saying that there was a crowd of Angels around here.

Shepherd 1: Yep

Shepherd 2: Come off it - you are kidding. I leave you two for one minute and when I'm back you making up another one of your "Quick there's a wolf over there" stories

Shepherd 1: Look, if you don't believe us then let's go and have a look. They said the shed was over towards the town of David.

(The shepherds leave.)

Tempus: Come on. Let's go with them.

Scene 4 - In the stable

(Mary and Joseph centre stage, both looking down at baby. Donkey in the background. 2 shepherds, Jane, Tempus, the apprentice and Michael come in - Michael trailing.)

Michael: (Looking down at what he's just trodden in) Oh my, not...(touches foot and smells hand) Gross! Jane, you'll never guess what I've just stepped in.

Jane: Shhh - hush will you I can't hear what they're saying.

Joseph: Oh Mary! He's the sweetest.

Mary: I can't believe it's finally happened. And just like I had been told: "I will give birth to a boy. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High."

Jane: (To Tempus) What's she talking about: "Son of the Most High"?

Tempus: It's just as she says: This little one here is the son of God, not Joseph - at first Joseph wanted nothing to do with it when Mary was found pregnant.

Jane: But how can that be?

Tempus: Nothing is impossible for God.

Joseph: "The Lord will make him king, and his kingdom will never end. His name is Jesus."

Michael: What's all that: "His kingdom will never end"?

Tempus: Well - God will give Him the highest honour: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth; and everyone confess that Jesus is Lord.

(2 shepherds, Michael, Jane, Tempus and the apprentice all kneel down. Joseph and Mary take Jesus and leave, followed by shepherds.)

Michael: (All 3 stand) Incredible!

Tempus: Now you two - it's getting late - I'll need to get you back before your Mum finds you missing. She's just sneaking up the stairs now with your stockings. We must hurry!

(Michael, Jane, Tempus and the apprentice exit.)

Scene 5 - Back in the bedroom

(Jane and Michael waking up)

Michael: Jane - what a crazy dream I've just had. We both went on a journey to see the first Christmas.

Jane: You never! I had the exact same dream. How spooky is that!

Michael: Hey - can I hear mother up already? Come on, it's Christmas morning.

(Both put on dressing gowns and slippers. A start to leave)

Jane: Uhhh - Michael is that you? You stink!

Michael: (Takes off slipper and smell it. In shock) It's my slipper. But I thought it was a dream. (Pause and leave)


Copyright David Ruddock, all rights reserved.
This script may be used without royalty payment, provided no charge is made for entrance to the performance. In return, the author would like to be told of any performance. He may be contacted at dramatix@davidruddock.co.uk