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Roque. 'Tis strange, now, the labour some will undergo to encounter melancholy ! and truly, I left Don Octavian in poor plight to amend the spirits of those who wish him well. "What between love and loneliness, by living in “ the woods he is clean an altered man. I once was ena. “moured of a pin-maker's daughter of Segovia, and found “solitude did but increase my pain ;-so I e'en cured my"self on't, in three weeks, by keeping my mistress com“pany."
Flor. Was't in the wild part of the mountain, Roque, where late you saw Octavian ?
Roque. Good faith, in the very bosom here of the Sierra de Ronde. With a full heart and an empty bottle, I was trudging from Granada to Seville-to bring the sad news of my master, Count Virolet, your ladyship's brother, being taken by the Moors; when, in crossing the mountain here, among other game started by the way, I at last put up a man- -(Don Octavian, as your ladyship knows,) who sprung from a thicket, and flew from my sight like a wild duck.
Flor. Alas ! for pity, after twelve long months,
Roque. If my mother's word may pass, lady, I held my first birthday in't, up four pair of stairs, in the right hand garret that looks over the fishpond : and if ever I prove thankless for being born in the one, I would I might, that moment, be dragged through the other.
“ Flor. Thou didst first trudge an urchin to the field “ With my poor father: lately thou hast followed
brother Virolet. Though trained to arms, • And a rough soldier, Roque, I think thou canst • Extend thy honest love of this our family “ E'en to a female of the stock.
" Roque, A soldier, lady, can extend his love to the fe. “male of any family. But you, Donna Floranthe, daugh
ter of my old master, and sister of my young one !-what “would not I give now to see you beset with a good roun! “ dozen of your enemies !-well, I am getting in years “but they should have a taste of old Roque's skill in the "cuagel, yet."
Flor. I do believe thee, Roque-therefore, good fellow, Tomorrow, when we seek this mountain's gloom,
Searching its caves, and tangled labyrinths, “ Where the wolf nightly howls against the moon, “ And lawless plunder, on his hungry watch, “ Lurks, meditating murder, then, good Roque," Should any ill befal,--and Heaven knows What
befal me ! Roque. What, Donna Floranthe, and I with you !-they must fight bard, lady, that would harm you. An' you
take the road to dying, madam, by your leave, I must go foremost.
Flor. I would not have it so, good Roque. Live thou, Whate'er betide, to tell my simple story; Lest slander blot a luckless maiden's fame, And no one left to clear her memory.
Roque. Truly, madam, I am the worst teller of a story of any in Spain. I can only say, that my old master, your father, bid you love Don Octavian; but as old gentlemen will sometimes change their minds, he, after a while, chargged you to love another, which ill suiting Don Octavian's humour, he fairly ran his rival through the body; fled in despair; and hadn't been heard of for a twelvemonth ; till I started him here in the woods : when coming to tell you
the news, I found my old master, rest his soul! at peace; you single; the wounded man recovered, and mar ried to a rich one-eyed widow of Salamanca.
Flor. 'Twill be a faithful history, old soldier.
Roque. I trust not, madam; for I shall then proceed to specify that you went forth in search of your lover, and died by the way; which I hope, saving your presence, will be one of the roundest lies that ever found passage through the mouth of a soldier.
Enter Lope Tocho, with a bottle and glass, R. Flor. Now, friend, hast thou prepared my chamber?
Tocho. 'Twould ha' done your heart good to see the warming pan slide between the white sheets; you will sleep in aired snow, signor. Would it please you take a whet before you creep betwixt 'em ? [ Offering the wine.
Flor. Not a drop, host; I will to rest; and, Roque, Get thee to bed. We must away at dawn, host.
Refresh thee, Roque--and so, good night, good fellow.
[Exit, R. Tocho. Do you not follow your master, to help him undress, friend?
Roque. That is my business, friend.
Tocho. By our lady, I never found a gentleman know his own business better, and do it worse! What may thy master be, friend ?
Roque. That is his business, friend;—but for me, I am a soldier, and have learned somewhat in the wars.
Tocho. Ay, marry—I would fain know what 'tis.
Roque. 'Tis, when I see a knave thrust his nose into the business of another, to tweak it very lustily.
[Pulls his nose. Tocho. Signor, I do reverence a soldier—but I never much cared to see him go through his maneuvres.
Roque. Follow. I shall to the loft and turn in an hour or two. Bring the bottle after me, and place it on the hay truss where I lay me down.
[Exit up the ladder into the loft. Tocho. And if I carry my countenance so near the fin ger
and thumb of such a nose-tweaker again, I would my face might want a handle ever after. Oons ! I shall dream of nothing all night but the huge paw of a trooper.Tweak! well, let him but lie one hour in the loft, and he'll be the best flea-bitten bully in Andalusia. Exit, R.
SCENE II.-The Sierra de Ronda. Enter VIROLET, ZORAYDA, and KILMALLOCK, R. Viro. Love, not a word ? good faith, it is no wonder: Thou must be sadly worn, Zorayda ; Sleep hangs upon those pretty eyes of thine, And dulls their lustre. Art not wond'rous weary
? Zoray. The spirit, Christian, that did prompt my flight, Will give me strength, I warrant, to endure it. "Twere evil in me to forget my fatherBut were he now less heavy on my thoughts, I should be found a stouter traveller.
Kilm. What a sweet little Moor it is ! och, she can never be her father's daughter! By St. Dominick, Count, this same escaping for fatiguing work is mighty hard labour.
Viro. A few leagues more, and we shall reach the town
Kilm. Oh, faith, you'll be as good as the best. I never knew a young Christian lady yet, that was not impatient when she was going to get married. Well, this mountain is what they call the Sierra de Ronda-close to the borders of Andalusia-here we are in the middle of it, with as fine prospect of a dark night, as a traveller could wish to look round upon. Viro. Would our companions were come up:
'tis strange They loiter thus !
Zoray. I tremble in these wilds For my poor Agnes.
Kilm. And that copper devil, Sadi, too! certain, now, our horses foundered at the foot of the mountain, that he might stay behind to look after them: and the girl sat down weeping by his side, to help him.
Zoray. Poor wench! her heart is stored with kindness.
Kilm. Och, it's brimful! But this is the first time I ever heard squatting down to cry, was the way to help a man to pull horses out of the mire.
Viro. Wilt forward, sweet? or shall we tarry for them ?
Zoray. Sooth, I am weary now-yet I could on-
Should draw as warm a tear from melting pity,
Viro. Lovely excellence !
[Drums beat at a distance. Hark! heard you not a distant drum, Kilmallock ?
Kilm. Faith, and it is a drum! it does a soldier's heart good to hear it thump—though, to be sure, now, it is not quite so convanient. These Moors, though they are most of 'em penned up in Granada, keep skirmishing and trotting all over the province. Friends or enemies, it isu't civil in 'em to keep a clatter at this time o' night, and disturb us lodgers in the mountain.
Zoray. I sink with terror.
Kilm. Nay, that you shall not. It never shall be said that a woman sank in the hour of distress, while a man stands by that can hold up her chin. Zoray. Let us not forward now, beseech
Viro. Come, Zorayda !
í Exeunt Virolet and Zorayda, r. Kilm. I'll lover about here, as an out-post.— When a man watches in the dark, by himself, on a mountain, he's rather apt to be lonesome; but if he chances to be upon duty there, to serve a friend and guard female innocence, he needs but call in his own thoughts to be mighty agree
This love makes havoc with man, woman, and child! though, of a truth, the passion is some. what llunted in me, since I left Tipperary.