British Dramatists from Dryden to Sheridan

By George Henry Nettleton; Arthur Eillicot Case | Go to book overview

SIR ANTH. '0, booby! stab away and welcome' --

says she. -- Get along! -- and d--n your 80
trinkets! Exit ABSOLUTE.

Enter DAVID, running.

DAV. Stop him! Stop him! Murder! Thief! Fire! -- Stop fire! Stop fire! -- O1 Sir Anthony -- call! call! fire! 'em stop! Murder! Fire!

SIR ANTH. Fire! Murder! Where? 85

DAV. Oons! he's out of sight! and I'm out of breath, for my part! O, Sir Anthony, why didn't you stop him? why didn't you stop him?

SIR ANTH. Z--ds! the fellow's mad! -- Stop

whom? Stop Jack? 90

DAV. Aye, the Captain, Sir! -- there's murder and slaughter -----

SIR ANTH. Murder!

DAV. Aye, please you, Sir Anthony, there's all

kinds of murder, all sorts of slaughter to be 95
seen in the fields: there's fighting going on, sir -- bloody sword-and-gun fighting!

SIR ANTH. Who are going to fight, dunce?

DAV. Everybody that I know of, Sir Anthony: --

everybody is going to fight; my poor master, 100
Sir Lucius O'Trigger, your son, the Captain -----

SIR ANTH. O, the dog! -- I see his tricks. -- Do you know the place?

DAV. King's-Mead-Fields.

SIR ANTH. You know the way? 105

DAV. Not an inch; -- but I'll call the mayor -- aldermen -- constables -- church-wardens -- and beadles -- we can't be too many to part them.

SIR ANTH. Come along -- give me your shoulder!

we'll get assistance as we go. -- The lying vil­ 110
lain! -- Well, I shall be in such a frenzy! -- So -- this was the history of his trinkets! I'll bauble him!

Exeunt.


SCENE III

King's-Mead-Fields.

SIR LUCIUS and ACRES, with pistols.

ACRES. By my valor! then, Sir Lucius, forty yards is a good distance. -- Odds levels and aims! -- I say it is a good distance.

SIR LUC. Is it for muskets or small field-pieces? Upon my conscience, Mr. Acres, you must leave 5 those things to me. -- Stay now -- I'll show you. -- (Measures paces along the stage.) There now, that is a very pretty distance -- a pretty gentleman's distance.

ACRES. Z--ds! we might as well fight in a 10
sentry-box! --I tell you, Sir Lucius, the farther he is off, the cooler I shall take my aim.

SIR LUC. Faith! then I suppose you would aim at him best of all if he was out of sight I

ACRES. No, Sir Lucius -- but I should think 15
forty, or eight and thirty yards -----

SIR LUC. Pho! pho! nonsense! Three or four feet between the mouths of your pistols is as good as a mile.

ACRES. Odds bullets, no! -- By my valor! 20
there is no merit in killing him so near: -- do, my dear Sir Lucius, let me bring him down at a long shot: -- a long shot, Sir Lucius, if you love me!

SIR LUC. Well -- the gentleman's friend and I

must settle that. -- But tell me now, Mr. Acres, 25
in case of an accident, is there any little will or commission I could execute for you?

ACRES. I am much obliged to you, Sir Lucius -- but I don't understand -----

SIR LUC. Why, you may think there's no be­ 30
ing shot at without a little risk -- and if an unlucky bullet should carry a quietus with it -- I say it will be no time then to be bothering you about family matters.

ACRES. A quietus!35

SIR LUC. For instance, now -- if that should be the case -- would you choose to be pickled and sent home? -- or would it be the same to you to lie here in the Abbey? -- I'm told there is very snug lying

in the Abbey. 40

ACRES. Pickled! -- Snug lying in the Abbey! -- Odds tremors! Sir Lucius, don't talk so!

SIR LUC. I suppose, Mr. Acres, you never were engaged in an affair of this kind before?

ACRES. No, Sir Lucius, never before. 45

SIR LUC. Ah! that's a pity! -- there's nothing like being used to a thing. -- Pray now, how would you receive the gentleman's shot?

ACRES. Odds files! -- I've practised that. --

There, Sir Lucius -- there (puts himself in an 50
attitude) ----- a side-front, hey? -- Odd! I'll make myself small enough: -- I'll stand edge-ways.

SIR LUC. Now -- you're quite out -- for if you stand so when I take my aim ----- (Levelling at him.)

ACRES. Z--ds! Sir Lucius -- are you sure it is 55
not cocked?

SIR LUC. Never fear.

ACRES. But -- but -- you don't know -- it may go off of its own head!

SIR LUC. Pho! be easy. -- Well, now if I hit 60
you in the body, my bullet has a double chance -- for if it misses a vital part on your right side -- 'twill be very hard if it don't succeed on the left!

ACRES. A vital part! «O, my poor vitals!»

SIR LUC. But, there -- fix yourself so. -- 65
(Placing him.) Let him see the broad side of your full front -- there -- now a ball or two may pass clean through your body, and never do any harm at all.

ACRES. Clean through me! -- a ball or two clean

through me! 70

____________________
112] O1 d--d trinkets.
SCENE III. 67] O1 clear.

-835-

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