The Complete Poetical Works of Lord Byron

By George Gordon Byron | Go to book overview
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Enter WERNERhastily, with the knife in his hand, by the secret panel, which he closes hurriedly after him.

Wer. (not at frst recognising her). Discover'd I then I'll stab. -- (recognising her.) Ah! Josephine, art thou not at rest?

Jos. What rest? My God!
What doth this mean?

Wer. (showing a rouleau). Here's gold -- gold, Josephine,
Will rescue us from this detested dungeon.

Jos. And how obtain'd ? -- that knife!

Wer. 'T is bloodless -- yet. 740

Away -- we must to our chamber.

Jos. But whence comest thou?

Wer. Ask not! but let us think where we shall go --
This -- this will make us way (showing the gold) -- I'll fit them now.

Jos. I dare not think thee guilty of dishonour.

Wer. Dishonour!

Jos. I have said it.

Wer. Let us hence:
'T is the last night, I trust, that we need pass here.

Jos. And not the worst, I hope.

Wer. Hope! I make sure.
But let us to our chamber.

Jos. Yet one question --
What hast thou done?

Wer. (fiercely). Left one thing undone

which 749
Had made all well: let me not think of it!
Away!

Jos. Alas, that I should doubt of thee!

[Exeunt.


ACT II

SCENE I

A Hall in the same Palace.
Enter
IDENSTEINand Others.

Iden. Fine doings! goodly doings! honest doings!
A baron pillaged in a prince's palace!
Where, till this hour, such a sin ne'er was heard of.

Fritz. It hardly could, unless the rats despoil'd
The mice of a few shreds of tapestry.

Iden. Oh! that I e'er should live to see this day!
The honour of our city's gone for ever.

Fritz. Well, but now to discover the de-linquent:
The baron is determined not to lose
This sum without a search.

Iden. And so am I. 10

Fritz. But whom do you suspect?

Iden. Suspect! all people
Without -- within -- above -- below -- Heaven help me!

Fritz. Is there no other entrance to the chamber?

Iden. None whatsoever.

Fritz. Are you sure of that?

Iden. Certain. I have lived and served here since my birth,
And if there were such, must have heard of such,
Or seen it.

Fritz. Then it must be some one who
Had access to the antechamber.

Iden. Doubtless

Fritz. The man call'd WERNER's poor I

Iden. Poor as a miser;

But lodged so far off, in the other wing, 20
By which there's no communication with
The baron's chamber, that it can't be he.
Besides, I bade him 'good night' in the hall,
Almost a mile off, and which only leads
To his own apartment, about the same time
When this burglarious, larcenous felony
Appears to have been committed.

Fritz. There's another,
The stranger --

Iden. The Hungarian?

Fritz. He who help'd
To fish the baron from the Oder.

Iden. Not
Unlikely. But, hold -- might it not have

been 30
One of the suite?

Fritz. How? We, sir!

Iden. No -- not you,
But some of the inferior knaves. You say
The baron was asleep in the great chair --
The velvet chair -- in his embroider'd night-gown;
His toilet spread before him, and upon it
A cabinet with letters, papers, and
Several rouleaux of gold; of which one only
Has disappear'd; -- the door unbolted, with
No difficult access to any.

Fritz. Good sir,

Be not so quick; the honour of the corps 40
Which forms the baron's household's unimpeach'd,

-683-

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