Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

there is so much better sport near at hand? I'll in I am resolved, and try my own fortune; 'uis bard luck if I don't get one of them. (As he goes to the Door,

Enter Second ConstanTIA. See, here's one bolted already! fair lady, whither so fast?

2 Con. I don't know, sir.
John. May I have the honour to wait upon you ?
2 Con. Yes, if you please, sir.
John. Wbither?
2 Con. I tell you, I don't know.

John. She's very quick. 'Would I might be so happy as to know you, lady!

2 Con. I dare not let you see my face, sir.
John. Why?

2 Con. For fear you should not like it, and then leave me; for, to tell you true, I bave at this present, very great need of you.

John. Hast thou -Then I declare myself thy champion : and let me tell thee, there is not a better knight-errant in all Christendom, than I am, to succour distressed damsels.

2 Con. What a proper, bandsome, spirited fellow this is! if he'd love me now as he ought, I would never seek out further, Sir, I am young, and unexperienced in the world.

John. If thou art young, it's no great matter what thy face is.

2 Con. Perbaps this freedom in me may seem strange; but, sir, in short, I'm forced to fly from one I hate; will you protect me?

John. Yes, that I will, before I see your face ; your shape has charmed me enough for that already.

2 Con. But if we should meet him, will you here promise me, he shall not take me from you?

John. If any one takes you from me, he shall ta'

my

life too; if I lose one, I won't keep l'other-they shall go together.

2 Con. For Heaven's sake then conduct me to some place, where I may be secured a while from the sight of any one whatsoever.

John. By all the hopes I have to find thy face as lovely as thy shape, I will.

2 Con. Well, sir, I believe you; for you have an honest look.

John. An honest look, zounds! I am afraid Don Frederick has been giving her a character of me too. Come, pray, unveil.

2 Con. Then turn away your face, for I'm resolved you shall not see a bit of mine, till I have set it in order, and then

John. What then?
2 Con. I'll strike you dead.

John. A mettled wench, I warrant her! If she be young now, and have but a nose on her face, she'll be as good as her word-Come, my dear, I'm e'en panting with impatience-Are you ready?-[As he turns slowly round, she gets on the other Side.]—'Sdeath, where is she?

2 Con. Here! stand your ground, if you dare !

John. By this light, a rare creature ! ten thousand times handsomer than her we seek for! this can be sure no common one: 'pray Heaven she be a kind one!

2 Con. Well, sir, what say you now?

John. Nothing; I'm so amazed I'm not able to speak. Pr’ythee, my sweet creature, don't let us be talking in the street, but run home with me, have a little private innocent conversation with you.

2 Con. No, sir, no private dealing, I beseech you.

John. 'Sheart, what shall I do? I'm out of my wits. Harkye, my dear soul, canst thou love me?..

2 Con. If I could, what then?

that I may

John. Why then I should be the happiest man alive!

[Kissing her Hand. 2 Con. Nay, good sir, hold-remember the con. ditions.

John. Conditions ! what conditions ? I would not wrong thee for the universe !

2 Con. Then you'll promise?

John. What, what! I'll promise any thing, every thing, thou dear, sweet, bewitching, heavenly woman!

2 Con. To make me an honest woman.

John. How the devil, my angel, can I do that, if you are undone to my hands?

2 Con. Ay, but I am not-I am a poor innocent lamb, just escaped from the jaws of an old fox,

John. Art thou, my pretty lambi then I'll be thy shepherd, and fold thee in these arms.

[Kisses her Hand. 2 Con. Ay, but you must not eat the lamb yourself? John. I like you so well, I will do any thing for thee, my dear delightful incognita ! I love you so much, it is imposible to say how much I love thee ! my heart, my mind, and my soul, are transported to such a degree, that-that-that-damn it, I can't

-so let us run home, or the old fox, my lamb, will overtake us.

[They run out.

talk

SCENE III.

The Street.

Enter Don FREDERICK and FRANCISCO. Fred. And art thou sure it was Constantia, say'st thou, that he was leading?

Fran. Am I sure I live, sir ? Why; I dwelt in the house with her; how can I chuse but know her?

Fred. But didst thou see her face?

Fran. Lord, sir, I saw her face as plain as I see yours just now, not two streets off.

Fred. Yes, 'tis even so: I suspected it at first, but then he foreswore it with that confidence-Well, Don John, if these be your practices, you shall have no more a friend of me, sir, I assure you. Perhaps, though, he met her by chance, and intends to carry her to her brother, and the duke.

Fran. A little time will show-Gadso, here he is!
Fred. I'll step behind this shop, and observe him.

Enter Don John and Second CONSTANTIA, John. Here now go in, and let me see who will get you out again without

my

leave. 2 Con. Remember-You have given your honour.

John. And my love-and when they go together, you may always trust them.

Fred. Dear Don John! [Don John puts Constantia in, and locks the Door.

John. Ob, how do you do, Frederick ?— Damn him, now will he ask me forty foolish questions, and I have such a mind to talk to this wench, that I cannot think of one excuse for my life!

then?

Fred. Your servant, sir : pray,

who's that you

locked in just now, at the door

John. Why, a friend of mine, that's gone up to read a book.

Fred. A book ! that's a quaint one, i'faith! pr’ythee, Don John, what library bast thou been buying this afternoon? for i’the morning, to my knowledge, thou hadst never a book there, except it were an alınanack, and that was none of thy own reither.

John. No, no, it's a book of his own, he brought along with bim: a scholar, that's given to reading.

Fred. And do scholars, Don John, wear petticoats Row-a-days?

John. Plague on him, he has seen her!-Well, Don Frederick, thou know'st I am not good at lying; 'tis a woman, I confess it, make your best on't: what

Fred. Why, then, Don John, I desire you'll be pleased to let me see her.

John. Why,'faith, Frederick, I should not be against the thing, but you know that a man must keep his word, and she has a mind to be private.

Fred. But, John, you may remember when I met a lady so before, this very self-same lady too, that I got leave for you to see her, John.

John. Why, do you think then, that this here is Constantia ?

Fred. I cannot properly say I think it, John, because I know it; this fellow here, saw her, as you led her i'th'streets.

John, Well, and what then? Who does he say it is?

Fred. Ask him, sir, and he'll tell ye. : John. Harkye, friend, dost thou know this lady?

Fran. I think I should, sir; I have lived long enough in the house to know her, sure. John. And how do they call her, prythee? Fran. Constantia !

1

« ZurückWeiter »