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Doctor-Of course, I don't believe her. Ethel-But it isn't! You know that it
Mrs. Dole—I'll prove it before I get isn't! through. Why did my husband take to Doctor-I know it! But that isn't enough painting again? Because he was in love we must be able to convince others. with her. Why did she make you keep your Ethel-Others! Do you mean she'll tell engagement secret? Because she was afraid others? the truth might come out. Why didn't she Doctor—How are we to prevent it? To want me to come here? Because she didn't do it legally we should have to go to court, know what I knew. Why does she want me and that would mean a public scandal. to go now? Because she's afraid of me, And we mustn't have that if we can possibly that's why
help it, must we? Doctor-Get out of this house and don't Ethel-No! No! wait till morning! Get out now, this minute! Doctor—Then, don't you see that our best If you don't I'll send for the police and have plan is to hear this alleged evidence so that them put you out!
we may learn exactly what it is and thus be Mrs. Dole—Send for them! Send for in a position to refute it? You see that, them! This would be a fine scandal for the don't you? (She nods) Of course you do, police court, wouldn't it? And when I pro- so be a dear good girl! Let her come in, and duced my documentary evidence-what then leave everything to me. Come, dear! about that, eh? What about that?
Come! (Takes her to chair) That's it! Doctor-Documentary evidence!
That's it! Ethel—It's a lie! I never wrote your hus- Ethel-Whatever it is, you won't believe band a letter in my life!
it, will you? Mrs. Dole-Who said anything about let- Doctor Of course not! ters? I didn't. But I've got a document- Ethel—(To herself) I must deny it! ary evidence just the same--got it right here
(Mrs. Dole enters) in this very house--and I'll get it and prove Doctor-Well? to you that everything I've said is true. I'll Mrs. Dole-Here it is! prove it, I tell you! I'll prove it in black Doctor—What? and white! (Mrs. Dole goes out)
Mrs. Dole-The documentary evidence. Ethel—(In a whisper to self) Documentary His diary evidence? Black and white?
Doctor-His diary? Doctor-What does the woman mean? Mrs. Dole-Yes. You didn't write him any letters that she Ethel-You mean that he wrote in theremight misunderstand, did you?
Mrs. Dole-And you? Yes—that's just Doctor-Then what is she talking about? what I mean!
Ethel—I don't know! But whatever it Doctor--What did he write? is-it isn't true. You know that, don't Mrs. Dole-You know his writing? you?
Doctor-Yes. (Mrs. Dole shows diary) Doctor ---Certainly, I know it.
Mrs. Dole-Is that it? Ethel—Then don't listen to her! What- Doctor—Yes. ever she's got, don't hear it. If you do it Mrs. Dole-Then listen to this and see for will be an insult to me.
yourself whether it's here or not. “April Doctor-I must hear it.
12.-Another secretary came to-day. She .Ethel-(II ysterically) You shan't! You has a personality and seems to have brains, shan't! I tell you! Whatever she's got is and I hope my search for an intelligent lies-all lies--and I won't let you read them! helper is over. Her name is Ethel TosI won't! And she shan't come in! She cani.” shan't come in! Do you hear! she can't Ethel-(With the one idea of denial in her come in!
(She places her back to the door) brain) It's a lie! Doctor—(Goes to Ethel) Listen, Ethel-I Mrs. Dole-What's a lie? know what she says is lies and I know that Ethel-Why- Whyshe has no proofs. But this has evidently Mrs. Dole-Didn't you go to work for him become an obsession with her. Without April 12? Didn't you go as his secretary? having the slightest foundation in fact, she Wasn't your name Ethel Toscani? If so, is convinced that it is true.
what's the lie? (Pause)
Mrs. Dole-(To Doctor) You see? She Ethel-It's a lie! denies before she even knows what it is, Doctor-Go on! how's that for a guilty conscience!
Mrs. Dole-(Indicating in diary) I've Ethel—It's not !
drawn a line under the parts that concern Mrs. Dole—Oh, yes, it is! It's been that The rest don't matter. “April 13from the beginning, and I know what The new secretary promises splendidly; she started it-it was what I said the first night knows something of art, and is evidently of a I came here.
class much higher than the average stenogDoctor-What you said the first night you rapher. I wonder what her history is.” came here? What did you say?
April 14—the more I see of her, the more Mrs. Dole—I said I hoped Miss Bromley. I am convinced that she is a girl decidedly would be as good a friend to her husband as out of the ordinary.” That's the beginning. she had been to mine. She knew what that Doctor-That's nothing! was, and her conscience did the rest.
Mrs. Dole—That's April 14, two days
after she came. Let's see how it is here. (Turns over pages) This is April 30. "She has told me her story. If ever a girl deserved to be happy she does. She interests, me wonderfully.” Shall I go on?
Doctor-Very well. This is
Thursday. I won't an-
I am entitled to
Dole-It is my one chance, and I'm going to take it. Why should I be miserable for the rest of
life? my happiness, and I'm going to get it if I can. Ethel-Even though it costs your wife's?
There it is, see? (Mrs. Dole shows Doctor to realize that after all we are both only diary)
human, and that I am not as strong as I Ethel-It isn't true! Don't listen, Ethan! thought I was.” And then we come to this: Don't listen to it!
“The thing I said should never happen has Doctor—Go on!
happened. It was last night. We were Mrs. Dole-"June 5-She loves me! both-” She loves me! She told me so! She put her Ethel-Don't! For God's sake, don't! arms around my neck and kissed me and Don't! Don't! Don't! (Ethel sobs. Pause) told me that she loved me!”
Doctor-It-is true? (Pause. Fiercely) Doctor-Ethel !
Tell me—is it true? Ethel-I didn't! I never did! Don't be- Ethel—I didn't mean any harm–I didn't! lieve it, Ethan! Don't believe it!
I didn't! Doctor-Go on!
Mrs. Dole-Now you've got the truth at Ethel-Don't read any more, for God's last, and that's all I wanted. (She puts diary sake! Don't read any more!
on table) I'd read that some day if I was you, Mrs. Dole-Why? Is it true?
Mrs. Bristol; it might interest you. Ethel-No!
Doctor) I've done what I came for, and so I'll Doctor
take your advice—I'll go to-night. (Mrs. Ethel
Don't let her, Dole goes out) Ethan!
Don't let Doctor-My wife! My wife! It's all her!
quite clear to me now! It wasn't because of Doctor
-Read! the romance that you wished our engageMrs.
Dole—"June ment kept secret-it was because you were 12-I am
beginning afraid of what-he-would do—and when
I took you in my arms and told you that one of the reasons I loved you was because you had been tempted and had won all that time you belonged to him!
Ethel-No! No! I couldn't do a thing like that! From the first hour you came into my life he never even kissed me! I made a mistake-I did wrong—yes—but oh, I couldn't do a thing like that! I'm not a bad woman!
Ethel pleads with her husband for forgive- me, dear, forgive me! If you won't, what is ness. Has any woman ever been a truer, there left for me? Nothing! If you leave better wife than she has been, she asks. me, there won't be anything in life to live She tells him to open his mind and his heart for, and I shall die! I know I shall die! to the fact that she loves him, and loves him Doctor—There's one thing we have both truly. He replies that there is one thing no forgotten. man can forgive, and wishes to know why Ethel—The scandal! she never told him of the relation between Doctor—There's never been any in our Stannard Dole and herself before she mar- family-we've been proud of it, too. Our ried. Ethel says that it was because she name has never been flared in the daily knew that he drew a straight line for women, papers
and it shan't be now if I can help it. and that she was afraid of losing him. She
She Mrs. Dole has no proofs. They're all there. has made her one mistake and has paid (Points to the diary) She'll realize it, too, the penalty, she argues. Why must she when she comes to her senses and that will pay forever? The doctor cannot see things keep her quiet. We must stop the scandal that way. She sinned and she must pay. at all costs and there's just one way to do it That's justice.
we must live, apparently, as we have been
living. Ethel-If I am to be condemned for Ethel—You are overlooking one very imwhat I did before I met 'you, what about portant part of the plan. your life before you met me?
Doctor-What? Doctor_That's different.
Doctor—You, Ethel? Doctor-Right here. When you married Ethel—The papers may flaunt it as much me you neither expected nor believed me to as they like, the entire world may know; let be virtuous. I never pretended nor led you our names be on every one's tongue; what to believe that I was. My personal purity do I care? If you think nothing of me, wasn't a part of the contract, but yours was why should I think anything of myself? a part. I did expect and believe you to be Doctor-Ethel ! virtuous, and you knew it and led me to Ethel—My suffering was nothing to you; believe it when you were not. That's my pleading, nothing; my love, nothingfraud, and a contract obtained by fraud in spite of them all I was to be cast off for is void.
the whole world to scorn and revile. But Ethel-But is the contract fair?
the moment you are touched, the minute Doctor-You should have thought of that you think that even a finger will be pointed before
made it. You said I am a man. at you—then it's different, isn't it? I beg I am; and my feelings are those of a man. for my life and you reply by asking me to You deceived me regarding something a keep up appearances. Well, I won't do it! man holds dearer than anything else in the I won't do it! I'm your wife or I'm nothing! world—the virtue of his wife. You ob- (Pause. Doctor's face shows that her words tained your marriage to me by fraud, your have taken effect) whole life with me has been a lie, and I'm Doctor-You are right. Through it all I done with it I'm through
had been thinking only of myself. That's Ethel—Don't say that, Ethan!
clear enough. Now it's time to think of Doctor-I do say it!
you. Ethel-(Pleading) Then what's to become Ethel-You'll forgive me? You'll take of me? What am I to do? Where am I to
me back? go? If it isn't to be pity or justice, have Doctor-Don't press me for an answer mercy, Ethan-have mercy! I'm pleading In spite of everything I love you. for my happiness, for my life, have mercy! Ethel-Dear(Pause. Doctor is touched by Ethel's plea) Doctor— The face of the world has Give me another chance-just one; let me changed for me in half an hour. No matter show that my love and care and devotion what may come in the future-I realize I will make you forget what is past and gone! shall never forget to-day as long as I live. Doctor- That's impossible!
I know that the sight of that woman as she Ethel-Don't you think I've been pun- stood there with that book in her hand will ished enough already? I do. Oh, forgive never fade from my memory! No wonder