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Love. This is a frolic I never saw her in before! Laugh all the rest of my life!-laws of retaliation ! an injury in the tenderest point !-the company expects me,- Your servant, my dear!-yours, yours ! [Mimicking her.] What the devil is all this? Some of her female friends have been tampering with her. Zounds, I must begin to look a little sharp after the lady. I'll go this moment into the card-room, and watch whom she whispers with, whom she ogles with, and every circumstance that can lead to
[Going. Enter Muslin in a hurry. . Mus. Madam, madam,-here's your letter; I would not for all the world that my master
Love. What, is she mad too? What's the matter, woman?
Mus. Nothing, sir,-nothing: I wanted a word with my lady, that's all, sir.
Love. You would not for the world that your master -What was you going to say?-what paper's that?
Mus. Paper, sir!
Mus. Lard, sir! how can you ask a body for such a thing? It's a letter to me, sir, a letter from the country—a letter from my sister, sir. She bids me to buy her a shiver de fize cap, and a sixteenth in the lottery; and tells me of a number she dreamt of, that's all, sir : I'll put it up. Love. Let me look at it. Give it me this moment.
[Reads.) To Mrs. Lovemore !-Brilliant Fashion, This is a letter from the country, is it?
Mus. That, sis—that is no, sir, -no; that's not șister's letter. If you will give me that back, sir, I'll show
you the right one.
Mus. Dear heart, you fright a body so--in the parlour, sir-I found it there.
Love. Very well!-leave the room.
Mus. The devil fetch it, I was never so out in my politics in all my days.
[Exit. Love. A pretty epistle truly this seems to be Let me read it.
[Reads.] Permit me, dear madam, to throw myself on my knees, for on niy knees I must address you, and in that humble posture, to implore your compassion.—Compassion with a vengeance on him- - Think you see me now with tender, melting, supplicating eyes, languishing at your feet,
-Very well, sir. Can you find it in your persist in cruelty ?-Grant me but access to you once more, and in addition to what I already said this morning I will urge such motives
-Urge motives, will ye?- Las will suggest to you, that you should no longer hesitate in gratitude to reward him, who still on his knees, here makes a vow to you of eternal constancy and love.
So! so! so! your very humble servant, Sir Brilliant Fashion !-- This is your friendship for me, is it? You are mighty kind, indeed, sir,-but I thank you as much as if you had really done me the favour: and Mrs, Lovemore; I'm your humble servant too. She intends to laugh all the rest of her life! This letter will change her note. Yonder she comes along the gallery, and Sir Brilliant in full chase of her. They come this way. Could I but detect them both now! I'll step aside; and who knows but the devil may tempt them to their undoing At least I'll try. A polite husband I
. am: there's the coast clear for
Enter Mrs. LOVEMORE and Sir BRILLIANT. Mrs. Love. I tell you, Sir Brilliant, your civility is odious, your compliments fulsome, and yoạr solicitations impertinent, sir.-I must make use of harsh language, sir: you provoke it, and I can't refrain.
Sir Bril. Not retiring to solitude and discontent again, I hope, madam! Have a care, my dear Mrs. Lovemore, of a relapse.
Mrs. Love. No danger of that, sir: don't be so solicitous about me. Why would you leave the company? Let me entreat you to return, sir.
Sir Bril. By heaven, there is more rapture in being one moment vis-a-vis with you, than in the company of a whole drawing-room of beauties. Round you are melting pleasures, tender transports, youthful loves, and blooming graces, all unfelt, neglected, and despised, by a tasteless, cold, languid, unimpassioned husband, while they might be all so much better employed to the purposes of ecstasy and bliss.
Mrs. Love. I desire, Sir Brilliant, you will desist from this unequalled insolence. I am not to be treated in this manner;-and I assure you, sir, that were I not afraid of the ill consequences that might follow, I should not hesitate a moment to acquaint Mr. Lovemore with your whole behaviour.
Sir Bril. She won't tell her husband then!--A charming creature, and blessings on her for so convenient a hint. She yields, by all that's wicked; what shall I say to overwhelm her senses in a flood of nonsense ?
Go, my heart's envoys, tender sighs, make haste,-
[Forcing her all this time.
Enter MR. LOVEMORE.
Love. Zoons! this is too much.
founded buckle is always plaguing me. My dear boy, Lovemore! I rejoice to see thee.
[They stand looking at each other. Love. And have you the confidence to look me in the face?
Sir Bril. I was telling your lady, here, of the most whimsical adventure
Love. Don't add the meanness of falsehood to the black attempt of invading the happiness of your friend. I did imagine, sir, from the long intercourse that has subsisted between us, that you might have had delicacy enough, feeling enough, honour enough, sir, not to meditate an injury like this.
Sig Bril. Ay, 'tis all over, I am detected! [Aside.] Mr. Lovemore, if begging your pardon for this rashness will any ways atone
Love. No, sir, nothing can atone. The provocation you have given me would justify my drawing upon you this instant, did not that lady and this roof protect you.
Sir Bril. But, Mr. Lovemore-
Love. Honour! for shame, Sir Brilliant, don't mention the word.
Sir Bril. If begging pardon of that lady
Love. That lady !-I desire you will never speak to that lady.
Sir Bril. Nay, but pr’ythee, Lovemore-
[Walks about in anger.
Enter Sır BASHFUL. Sir Bush. Did not I hear loud words among you? I certainly did. What are you quarrelling about?
Love. Read that, Sir Bashful. [Gives him Sir BrilLiant's letter.] Read that, and judge if I have not cause
(Sir Bashful reads to himself. Sir Bril. Hear but what I have to say
Love. No, sir, no; I have done with you for the present.--As for you, madam, I am satisfied with your conduct I was indeed a little alarmed, but I have been a witness of your behaviour, and I am above harbouring low suspicions.
Sir Bash. Upon my word, Mr. Lovemore, this is carrying the jest too far.
Love. Sir! It is the basest action a gentleman can be guilty of!
Sir Bash. Why, so I think. Sir Brilliant, [Aside.] here, take this letter, and read it to him ; his own letter
to my wife.
Sir Bril. Let me have it.
[Takes the letter. Sir Bash. 'Tis indeed, as you say, the worst thing a gentleman can be guilty of.
Love. 'Tis an unparalleled breach of friendship.
Sir Bril. Well, I can't see any thing unparalleled in it: I believe it will not be found to be without a precedent—as for example
[Reads. To my Lady Constant
Why should i conceal, my dear madam, that your charms have touched my heart ? Love. Zoons! my letter
[Aside. Sir Bril. [Reading.] I long have loved you, long adored. Could I but flatter myself
Sir Bash. The basest thing a man can be guilty of, Mr. Lovemore! Love. All a forgery, sir: all a forgery.
[Snatches the letter. Sir Bash. That I deny; it is the very identical letter my lady threw away with such indignation.—My
-Му Lady Constant, how have I wronged you !-That was