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covered, we had been indeed undone; yet still not wretched, could my Carlos think so!
Car. The fragments of the deed! the deed which that base woman
Vict. Speak not so harshly-To you, madam, I fear, I seem reprehensible; yet, when you consider my duties as a wife and mother, you will forgive me.
Be not afraid of poverty—a woman has deceived, but she will not desert you!
Laura. Is this real? Can I be awake?
Vict. Oh, may’st thou indeed awake to virtue! You have talents that might grace the highest of our sex; be no longer unjust to such precious gifts, by burying them in dishonour.–Virtue is our first, most awful duty; bow, Laura ! bow before her throne, and mourn in ceaseless tears, that ever you forgot her heavenly precepts !
Laura. So, by a smooth speech about virtue, you think to cover the injuries I sustain. Vile, insinuating monster !--but thou knowest me not.—Revenge is sweeter to my heart than love; and if there is a law in Spain to gratify that passion, your virtue shall have another field for exercise.
Erit. Ccr. [Turning towards Victoria.] My hated rival, and my charming wife! How many sweet mysteries have you to unfold --Oh, Victoria ! thanks thee, but I dare not yet say I love thee, till ten thousand acts of watchful tenderness, have proved how deep the sentiment's engraved.
Vict. Can it be true that I have been unhappy?But the mysteries, my Carlos, are already explained to you-Gasper's resemblance to my uncle
Gasp. Yes, sir, I was always apt at resemblancesIn our plays at home, I am always Queen Cleopatra -You know she was but a gipsey queen, and I hits her off to a nicety.
Car. Come, my Victoria--Oh, there is a painful
pleasure in my bosom--To gaze on thee, to listen to, and to love thee, seems like the bliss of angels' cheering whispers to repentant sinners.
(Exeunt Carlos and Victoria. Gasp. Lord help 'em! how easily the women are taken in!
Enter Minette. Min. Ah, here comes the man at last, after I have been sauntering in sight of his lodgings these two hours.-Now, if my scheme takes, what a happy person I shall be ! and sure, as I was Donna Olivia today, to please my lady, I may be Donna Olivia tonight, to please myself. I'll address him as the maid of a lady who has taken a fancy to him, then
convey him to our house—then retire, and then come in again, and, with a vast deal of confusion, confess I sent my maid for him. If he should dislike
forwardness, the censure will fall on 'my lady; if he should be pleased with my person, the advantage will be mine. But perhaps he's come here on some wicked frolic or other.-i'll watch him at a distance bem fore I speak.
[Exit. Enter Don JULIO, Julio. Not here, 'faith ; though she gave me last night but a faint refusal, and I had a right, by all the rules of gallantry, to construe that into an assent.Then she's a jill -Hang her, I feel I am uneasyThe first woman that ever gave me pain, I am
ashamed to perceive that this spot has attractions for me, only because it was here I conversed with her. 'Twas here the little syren, conscious of her charms, unveiled her fascinating face- -"Twas here-Ha!
Enter Don GARCIA and Don VINCENTIO.
Gar. 'Twas here that Julio, leaving champaigne untasted, and songs of gallantry unsung, came to talk to the whistling branches.
Vin. 'Twas here that Julio, flying from the young and gay, was found in doleful meditation-[Altering his Tone.]-on a wench, for a hundred ducats !
Gar. Who is she?
Julio. Not Donna Olivia, gentlemen ; not Donna Olivia.
Gar. We have been seeking you, to ask the event of your
visit to her. Julio. The event has proved that you have been most grossly duped.
Vin. I knew that-Ha! ha! ha!
Julio. And you likewise, I know that-Ha! ha! ha! The fair lady, so far from being a vixen, is the very essence of gentleness. To me, so much sweetness in a wife, would be downright maukish.
Vin. Well, but she's fond of a jew's harp.
Gar. Pho, pho! this is a game at cross purposes; let us all go to Don Cæsar's together, and compare opinions on the spot.
Julio. I'll go most willingly-but it will be only to cover you both with confusion, for being the two men in Spain most easily imposed on. [All going.
Enter MINETTE. Min. Gentlemen, my lady has sent me for one of you, pray which of you is it's
Julio. (Returning.] Me, without doubt, child.
think I am the man?
Min. Let me see-a good air, and well made--you are the man for a dancer. [To Garcia.] Well dressed, and nicely put out of hands—you are the man for a bandbox. [To Vincentio.)-Handsome and bold-you are the man for my lady.
[TO JULIO. Julio. My dear little Iris, here's all the gold in my pocket.--Gentlemen, I wish you a good night I am your very obedient, humble
[Stalking by them, with his Arm round Minette. Gar. Pho; prythee, don't be a fool. Are we not going to Donna Olivia ?
Julio. Donna Olivia, must wait, my dear boy; we can decide about her to-morrow.
Come along, my little dove of Venus !
(Exit. Gar. What a rash fellow it is! ten to one but this is some common business, and he'll be robbed and murdered—they take him for a stranger.
Vin. Let's follow, and see where she leads him.
Gar. That's hardly fair : however, as I think there's danger, we will follow.
Enter MINETTE and Don JULIO.
Min. There, sir, please to sit down, till my lady is ready to wait on you-she won't be long I'm sure she's out, and I may do great things before she returns.
[Aside. Erit. Julio. Through fifty back lanes, a long garden, and a narrow staircase, into a superb apartment—all that's in the regular way; as the Spanish women manage it, one intrigue is too much like another. If it was not now and then for the little lively fillip of a jealous husband or brother, which obliges one to leap from a window, or crawl, like a cat, along the gutters, there would be no bearing the ennui. Ah! ah! but this promises novelty ; [Looking through the Wing.) a young girl and an old man-wife or daughter? They are coming this way. My lovely incognita, by all that's propitious! Why did not some kind spirit whisper to me my happiness? but hold-she can't mean to treat the old gentleman with a sight of me.
[Goes behind the Sofa. Enter Don CÆSAR and OLIVIA. Cæsar. No, no, madam, no going out-There, madam, this is your apartment, your house, your garden, your assembly, till you go to your convent. Why, how impudent you are, to look thus unconcerned !--Can hardly forbear laughing in my face !Very well-very well !
[Exit, double locking the Door. Oliv. Ha! ha! ha! I'll be even with you, my dear father, if you treble lock it. I'll stay here two days, without once asking for my liberty, and you'll come the third, with tears in your eyes, to take me out. He has forgot the door leading to the garden--but I vow I'll stay, [Sitting down.] I can make the time pass pleasantly enough. Julio. I hope so.
(Looking over the Back of the Sofa. Oliv. Heaven and earth!
Julio. My dear creature, why are you so alarmed? am I here before you expected me? (Coming round.