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Enter DIMITY, R. Dim. Sir Charles and his lady, ma'am. Mrs. D. Oh! charming! I'm transported with joy !~ Where are they? I long to see 'em !
Exit, R. Dim. Well, sir; the happy couple are arrived. Drug. Yes, they do live happy, indeed. Dim. But how long will it last? Drug. How long ! don't forebode any ill
, you jade! don't, I say-it will last during their lives, I hope.
Dim. Well, mark the end of it-Sir Charles, I know, is
gay and good humoured—but he can't bear the least contradiction, no, not in the merest trifle.
Drug. Hold your tongue-hold your tongue.
Dim. Yes, sir, I have done :--and yet there is in the composition of Sir Charles a certain humour, which, like the flying gout, gives no disturbance to the family till it settles in the head ;— When once it fixes there, mercy on every body about him! but here he comes ! [Exit, L.
Enter Sir CHARLES, R. Sir C. My dear sir, I kiss your hand—but why stand on ceremony? To find you up thus late, mortifies me beyond expression.
Drug. 'Tis but once in a way, Sir Charles.
Sir C. My obligations to you are inexpressible ; you have given me the most amiable of girls ; our tempers accord like unisons in music. Drug. Ah! that's what makes me happy, in my
old days; my children and my garden are all my care.
Sir C. And my friend Lovelace-he is to have our sister Nancy, I find.
Drug. Why, my wife is so ininded.
Sir C. Oh! by all means, let her be made happy-A very pretty fellow, Lovelace-And as to that Mr. --Woodley, I think you call him-he is but a plain, underbred, ill-fashioned sort of a-nobody knows him !—he is not one of us.—Oh, by all means, marry her to one of us.
[Crosses to L. Drug. I believe it must be so.- -Would
Sir C. Nothing in nature, -it is time to retire.
take any Drug. Well, well! good night, then, Sir Charles-Ha! here comes my daughter.—Good night, Sir Charles. Sir C. Bon
repos. Drug. [Going out, R.] My Lady Racket, I'm glad to hear how happy you are; I won't detain you now—there's your good man waiting for you—good night, my girl.
Sir C. I must humour this old putt, in order to be re. membered in his will.
Enter LADY RACKET, R. Lady R. Oh, la !-I'm quite fatigued ;-I can hardly move;—why don't you help me, you barbarous man ?
Sir C. There; take my arm—" Was ever thing so pretty made to walk ?"
Lady R. But I won't be laughed at—I don't love you! Sir C. Don't you?
Lady R. No--dear me! this glove! why don't you help me off with my glove? Pshaw! you awkward thing, let it alone ; you an't fit to be about me; I might as well not be married, for any use you are of—reach me a chair you have no compassion for me -I am so glad to sit down—why do you drag me to routs ?-You know I hate them!
Sir C. Oh! there's no existing, no breathing, unless one does as other people of fashion do.
Lady R. But I'm out of humour; I lost all my money.
Sir C. Never fret for that I don't value three hun. dred pounds to contribute to your happiness.
Lady R. Don't you ?—not value three hundred pounds to pleasure me?
Sir C. You know I don't!
Lady R. Ah! you fond fool—But I hate gaming-It almost metamorphoses a woman into a fury-Do you know, that I was frightened at myself several times tonight!- I had a huge oath at the very tip of my tongue !
Sir C. Had ?
Lady R. I caught myself at it—and so I bit my lipsand then I was crammed up in a corner of the room with such a strange party at a whist-table, looking at black and red spots--did you mind them?
Sir C. You know I was busy elsewhere.
Lady R. There was that strange, unaccountable woman, Mrs. Nightshade.—She behaved so strangely to her husband, a poor, inoffensive, good-natured, good sort of a good-for-nothing man,-but she so teazed him,—“How could you play that card ?--Ah, you've a head, and so has a pin-You're a numscull
, you know you arehe has the poorest head in the world; he does not know what he is about, you know you don't—Ah, fie! I'm ashamed of you !" Sir C. She has served to divert
you, Lady R. And then, to crown all-there was my Lady Clackit, who runs on with an eternal volubility of nothing, out of all season, time, and place-In the very midst of the game she begins-“ Lard, ma'am, I was apprehensive I should not be able to wait on your la’ship-my poor little dog, Pompey—the sweetest thing in the world—a spade led !—there's the knave_I was fetching a walk, me’m, the other morning in the Park—a fine frosty morning it was—I love frosty weather of all things—let me look at the last trick—and so, meʼm, little Pompey—and if your la’ship was to see the dear creature pinched with the frost, and mincing his steps along the Mall with his pretty little innocent face-I vow I don't know what to play-and so, me'm, while I was talking to Captain Flimsey-your la’ship knows Captain Flimsey-nothing but rubbish in my hand—I can't help it-and so, me'm, five odious frights of dogs beset my poor little Pompey—the dear creature has the heart of a lion, but, but who can resist five at once ?-And so Pompey barked for assistance-the hurt he received was upon his chest-the doctor would not advise him to venture out till the wound was healed, for fear of an inflammation-Pray, what's trumps ?"
Sir C. My dear, you'd make a most excellent actress.
Lady R. Well, now let's go to rest ;-but, Sir Charles, how shockingly you played that last rubber, when I stood looking over you!
Sir C. My love, I played the truth of the game. Lady R. No, indeed, my dear, you played it wrong. Sir C. Pho! nonsense! you don't understand it !
Lady R. I beg your pardon, I'm allowed to play better than you !
Sir C. All conceit, my dear, I was perfectly right.
Lady R. No such thing, Sir Charles, the diamond was the play.
Sir C. Pho! pho! ridiculous ! the club was the card against the world!
Lady R. Oh! no, no, no, I say it was the diamond!
Sir C. 'Sdeath and fury! do you think I don't know
Walks about and sings. Sir C. Vexation ! you're the strangest woman that ever lived ! there's no conversing with you !--Look’ye here, my Lady Racket—it's the clearest case in the world, I'll make it plain in a moment. Lady R. Well, sir! ha! ha! ha!
[With a sneering laugh. Sir C. I had four çards left-a trump was led--they were six ;-no, no, no, they were seven, and we nine ;then you know—the beauty of the play was to
Lady R. Well, now it's amazing to me that you can't see it!--give me leave, Sir Charles, your left hand adversary had led his last trump,—and he had before finessed the club, and roughed the diamond ;--now if you had put on your
Lady R. And sure the play for the odd trick-
(Hums a tune, and walks about fretfully.
Takes out a glass, and settles her hair.
Sir C. You're a vile woman, and I'll not sleep ano her night under the same roof with you !
Lady R. As you please, sir.
Sir C. Madam, it shall be as I please !—I'll order my chariot this moment-[Going, R.]-I know how the cards should be played as well as any man in England, that let me tell you! [Going, R.] And when your family were standing behind counters, measuring out tape, and bartering for Whitechapel needles, my ancestors, madam, my ancestors were squandering away whole estates at cards ; whole estates, my Lady Racket. [She hums a tune, and he looks at her.] Why, then, by all that's dear to me, I'll never exchange another word with you, good, bad, or indifferent !-Look’ye, my Lady Racket, thus it stood—the trump being led, it was then my business
Lady R. To play the diamond, to be sure.
for so you may
(Exit, R. Lady R. What a passion the gentleman's in! ha! ha! [ Laughs in a peevish manner]—I promise hini, I'll not give up my judgment.
Re-enter Sır CHARLES, R. Sir C. My Lady Racket, look’ye, ma'am ;-once more, out of pure good-nature
Lady R. Sir, I am convinced of your good-nature.
Sir C. That, and that only, prevails with me to tell you, the club was the play.
Lady R. Well, be it so ;-I have no objection.
Sir C. It's the clearest point in the world ;-we were nine, and
Lady R. And for that very reason :-You know the club was the best in the house.
Sir C. There is no such thing as talking to you, You're a base woman !--I'll part from you for ever; you may live here with your father, and admire his fantastical evergreens, till you grow as fantastical yourself—I'll set out for London this instant! [Stops at the door.] The club was not the best in the house.
Lady R. How calm you are ! Well ! I'll go to bed ; - will you come ?-You had better,.--come, then ;-you shall come to bel.-Not come to bed, when I ask you ? Poor Sir Charles ! (Lonks and laugha, then Exit, I.