Complete Plays of John Galsworthy Part 379

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FAITH. He won't hurt me.

MARY. You'd better stay. Mother, she can stay, can't she?

MRS MARCH nods.

FAITH. No!

MARY. Why not? We're all sorry. Do! You'd better.



FAITH. Father'll come over for my things tomorrow.

MARY. What are you going to do?

FAITH. [Proudly] I'll get on.

JOHNNY. [From the window] Stop!

All turn and look at him. He comes down. Will you come to me?

FAITH stares at him. MRS MARCH continues to smile faintly.

MARY. [With a horrified gesture] Johnny!

JOHNNY. Will you? I'll play cricket if you do.

MR MARCH. [Under his breath] Good G.o.d!

He stares in suspense at FAITH, whose face is a curious blend of fascination and live feeling.

JOHNNY. Well?

FAITH. [Softly] Don't be silly! I've got no call on you. You don't care for me, and I don't for you. No! You go and put your head in ice.

[She turns to the door] Good-bye, Mr March! I'm sorry I've been so much trouble.

MR MARCH. Not at all, not at all!

FAITH. Oh! Yes, I have. There's nothing to be done with a girl like me. She goes out.

JOHNNY. [Taking up the decanter to pour himself out a gla.s.s of brandy]

Empty!

COOK. [Who has entered with a tray] Yes, my dearie, I'm sure you are.

JOHNNY. [Staring at his father] A vision, Dad! Windows of Clubs--men sitting there; and that girl going by with rouge on her cheeks--

COOK. Oh! Master Johnny!

JOHNNY. A blue night--the moon over the Park. And she stops and looks at it.--What has she wanted--the beautiful--something better than she's got--something that she'll never get!

COOK. Oh! Master Johnny!

She goes up to JOHNNY and touches his forehead. He comes to himself and hurries to the door, but suddenly MRS MARCH utters a little feathery laugh. She stands up, swaying slightly. There is something unusual and charming in her appearance, as if formality had dropped from her.

MRS MARCH. [With a sort of delicate slow lack of perfect sobriety] I see--it--all. You--can't--help--unless--you--love!

JOHNNY stops and looks round at her.

MR MARCH. [Moving a little towards her] Joan!

MRS MARCH. She--wants--to--be--loved. It's the way of the world.

MARY. [Turning] Mother!

MRS MARCH. You thought she wanted--to be saved. Silly! She--just-- wants--to--be--loved. Quite natural!

MR MARCH. Joan, what's happened to you?

MRS MARCH. [Smiling and nodding] See--people--as--they--are! Then you won't be--disappointed. Don't--have--ideals! Have--vision--just simple --vision!

MR MARCH. Your mother's not well.

MRS MARCH. [Pa.s.sing her hand over her forehead] It's hot in here!

MR MARCH. Mary!

MARY throws open the French windows.

MRS MARCH. [Delightfully] The room's full of GAS. Open the windows!

Open! And let's walk--out--into the air!

She turns and walks delicately out through the opened windows; JOHNNY and MARY follow her. The moonlight and the air flood in.

COOK. [Coming to the table and taking up the empty decanter] My Holy Ma!

MR MARCH. Is this the Millennium, Cook?

COOK. Oh! Master Geoffrey--there isn't a millehennium. There's too much human nature. We must look things in the face.

MR MARCH. Ah! Neither up--nor down--but straight in the face! Quite a thought, Cook! Quite a thought!

CURTAIN.

Complete Plays of John Galsworthy Part 379

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Complete Plays of John Galsworthy Part 379 summary

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