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muck; now you are tilting and driving like a Bed. lamite with this lad here, that seems as mad as your self: 'tis pity but your country had a little more em. ployment for you both.
Bel. Mr. Dudley, when you've recover'd the lady, you know where I am to be found.
[Ex. O'Fla. Well then, cann't you stay where you are, and that will save the trouble of looking after you? Yon volatile fellow thinks to give a man the meeting by getting out of his way: by my soul, 'tis a round. about method that of his. But I think he call'd you Dudley. Hark'e, young man, are you son of my friend the old captain ?
Charles. I am. Help me to convey this lady to her chamber, and I shall be more at leisure to answer your questions.
O'Fla. Ay, will I: come along, pretty one; if you've had wrong done you, young man, you need look no further for a second; Dennis O'Flaherty's your man for that: but never draw your sword be. fore a woman, Dudley; damn it, never while you live draw your sword before a woman. [Exeunt.
Lady Rosport's House. Enter Lady RUSPORT and
Servant. Serv. An elderly gentleman, who says his name is Varland, desires leave to wait on your ladyship.
L. Rus. Shew him in; the very man I wish to see : Varland, he was Sir Oliver's solicitor, and privy to all his affairs; he brings some good tidings; some fresh mortgage, or another bond come to light; they start up every day.
Enter VARLAND. Mr. Varland, I'm glad to see you ; you're heartily welcome, honest Mr. Varland; you and I hav'n't met since our late irreparable loss : how have you passed your time this age?
Var. Truly, my lady, ill enough: I thought I must have followed good Sir Oliver.
L. Rus. Alack-a-day, poor man! Well, Mr. Var. land, you find me here overwhelmed with trouble and fatigue ; torn to pieces with a multiplicity of affairs; a great fortune poured upon me unsought for and unexpected : 'twas my good father's will and plea. sure it should be so, and I must submit.
Var. Your ladyship inherits under a will made in the year forty-five, immediately after Captain Dud. ley's marriage with your sister. '
L. Rus. I do so, Mr. Varland; I do so.
Var. I well remember it; I engrossed every syllable; but I am surprised to find your ladyship set so little store by this vast accession.
L. Rus. Why you know, Mr. Varland, I am a moderate woman; I had enough before; a small matter satisfies me; and Sir Stephen Rusport (Heaven be his portion !) took care I shou'dn't want that.
Var. Very true; very true, he did so; and I am overjoyed at finding your ladyship in this disposition; for, truth to say, I was not without apprehension the news I have to communicate would have been of some prejudice to your ladyship's tranquillity.
L. Rus. News, sir! What news have you for me?
Var. Nay, nothing to alarm you; a trifie, in your present way of thinking: I have a will of Sir Oliver's you have never seen.
L. Rus. A will! Impossible! How camé you by it, prays · Var. I drew it up, at his command, in his last illness: it will save you a world of trouble: it gives his whole estate from you to his grandson, Charles Dudley.
L. Rus. To Dudley? His estate to Charles Dud. ley? I cann't support it! I shall faint! You've killed me, you vile man! I never shall survive it!
Var. Look'e there now : I protest, I thought you would have rejoiced at being clear of the incumbrance.
L. Rus. 'Tis false ; 'tis all a forgery, concerted be. tween you and Dudley ; why else did I never hear of it before ?
Var. Have patience, my lady, and I'll tell you.By Sir Oliver's direction, I was to deliver this will into no hands but his grandson, Dudley's: the young gentleman happend to be then in Scotland; I was dispatch'd thither in search of him: the hurry and fatigue of my journey brought on a fever by the way,
which confined me in extreme danger for several days; upon my recovery, I pursued my journey, found young Dudley had left Scotland in the interim, and am now directed hither; where, as soon as I can find him, doubtless, I shall discharge my conscience, and fulfil my commission.
L. Rus. Dudley then, as yet, knows nothing of this will?
Var. Nothing; that secret rests with me.
L. Rus. A thought occurs : by this fellow's talking of his conscience, I should guess it was upon sale. [ Aside.] Come, Mr. Varland, if 'tis as you say, I must submit. I was somewhat Aurried at first, and forgot myself; I ask your pardon : this is no place to talk of business ; step with me into my room; we will there compare the will, and resolve accordingly - Oh! would your fever had you, and I had your paper.
Enter Miss Rusport, CHARLES, and O'FLAHERTY.
Char. So, so! My lady and her lawyer have retired to close confabulation : now, major, if you are the generous man I take you for, grant me one favour.
O'Fla. Faith will I, and not think much of my generosity neither; for, though it may not be in my power to do the favour you ask, look you, it can never be in my heart to refuse it.
Charles. Cou'd this man's tongue do justice to his thoughts, how eloquent would he be! [Aside.
Char. Plant yourself then in that room : keep guard, for a few moments, upon the enemy's motions, in the chamber beyond; and, if they should attempt a sally, stop their march a moment, till your friend here can make good his retreat down the backstairs.
O'Fla. A word to the wise! I'm an old cam. paigner; make the best use of your time; and trust me for tying the old cat up to the picket.
Char. Hush ! hush I not so loud.
Charles. 'Tis the office of a centinel, major, you have undertaken, rather than that of a field-officer,
O'Fla. 'Tis the office of a friend, my dear boy; and therefore no disgrace to a general. [Exeunt. i
Enter CHARLES and CHARLOTTE. Char. Well, Charles, will you commit yourself to me for a few minutes ?
Charles. Most readily; and let me, before one goes by, tender you the only payment I can ever make for your abundant generosity.
Char. Hold, hold i so vile a thing as money must not come between us. What shall I say ! O Charles! O Dudley! What difficulties have you thrown upon mel Familiarly as we have lived I shrink not at