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Emme. Oh my friend!' you come most opportunely.--at the very moment when moft I needed confolation and support. Look there (giving a letter) ’ris my guardian's answer to the letter we plan'd together.
Cecilia reads :
“ You are kept here to recruit your health--your fortune shall be paid you on the day of
your marriage---in the mean time don't trouble “me any more with unreasonable requests, left "I should imagine you have relaps'd---you un“derstand
This is beyond all bearing---I cannot endure such--
Emme. How then can 1? Oh, Cecilia! when dislipation and ruin deprives the thoughtless profligate of his senses, there is little cause for lamenting a disorder that bereaves himn of all memory of his vices; but when a poor sufferer like myself, whole only error has been virtuous love, who has done no wrong but that of cherishing an honest passion, and that passion for a time deprived her of her reason, what is to be her fate? is ihe to be pitied, or thus for ever punished ?
Cecil. Don't be unhappy, Emmeline; I feel for you---pity you sincerely.
Emme. I need it, for if I were, as they insinuate, I should not have the sense to feel my forrows to acutely. My heart has long been breaking, and but for your humanity, the struggle had been past.-would it were! and yet Cecilia--Cecil. What, my friend?
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Emme. If I could see and bless the lovely cause of all
Cecil. Be comforted, you shall see him ; come, cheer up, for sunthine breaks in upon you, Emmeline; look, this key will secure your escape---ay, 'tis the pagoda key, your guardian gave it me, and in my lodgings in London, you may be tafely concealed, till Edward comes to punish him and to reward your sufferings.
Emme. Is there a hope then for our meeting? Oh! joy will now distract me, but think what difficulties--
Cecil. None but what we can surmount: the fervant who brings a chaise near the garden, will unlock the gate outside ; I'll go give him orders directly, and that no time may be loft, do you retire instantly into the pagoda (gives Emmeline the key,) wait till I come, or you hear the gate unbarred---nay, no more melancholy looks; henceforth you must smile and be cheerful, and some years hence, you, I, and Edward will fit over a winter fire, and laugh at our cunning, in ourwitting that first of schemers my cousin Project. Emme. Kind generous girl? I will do all that
you defire.--till we meet, farewell! how I tremble for the event, yet why? if I'am brought back, they cannot persecute me more, and if I 'scape their inares, the light of Edward-Oh! the thought revives me! and since my guardian is so bold in guilt, wherefore should innocence be fearful ? no, I've a virtuous cause, and I will nobly fall or triumph in the conflict !
SCENE III.---PROJECT's Garden : 'a Pagoda at the
Enter Project and Jack ARABLE.
Jack. Ar. So was she caught in her own snare, heh? Well, this is the place with the foreign name, the pagoda as you call it, pray what put it into your head to build such on out-of-the-way thing?
Projet. Speculation, sir, speculation : the house stood on my hands, so by running up a pair of wings after the eastern fashion, I thought to catch some thoughtless Nabob, but it wou’dn't do, they were obstinate; however, my rich cousin is coming home--
Jack Ar. And he pays for their obstinacy---fair, that's very fair; but about this Miss Cecilia---she is coming here to see an ecliple you say.
Project. Yes, she has herself given you a fair opportunity, and if you don't carry her to your father's where a parson and a licence is ready---stop, I think I saw a light, perhaps she's there already (looks through the key-hole) she is ! I see her petticoat.
Jack Ar. Do you? that's famous.--an eclipse, heh? gad ! she shall see a constellation. Go, squire go, tell the alderman to look out for me and my wife--
Project. No, I must go and look out for my own wife, for if she finds me and Cecilia out of the house at this time of night, she'll talk of recrimination for ever; so success to you, and remember, she's an angel, my young lawyer.
Jack Ar. Why, as I'am a lawyer I'd better forget it, for we and angels don't exactly suit each other. You manage your wife, I'll take care of mine. (Pro. D
ject exit.) now for it---now to coax her into the garden---(opens the door of the pagoda ---Ma'am! hadn't you better come out, ma'am ? don't be frightened, there's nobody here but me---she's coming by all that's tender, classical, and famous !
Enter Emmeline from the Pagoda. Emme. This is my friend's servant, I suppose, with the carriage---where can she be herself she promised to follow me instantly; however, I'll alk him---Heavens! what do I see? my cousin Arable! then l'am deceived, and am undone for ever.
Jack Ar. (not knowing her.) Yes, it's master Jacky! he's not gone to school you fee; however, I'll first secure the gate, that nobody may come from the house and disturb us---(he bars the gate of the pagoda.)--come Miss Cecilia, come to Aldgate-farni, and teach the cows to translate Greek and dance minuets. What, sulkey, heh ? let's look in ---how! why, it is not you, is it? no, egad! 'tis cousin Emmeline.
Emme. Yet, that Emmeline who was once your friend and favourite, who being deserted by her family, and persecuted by her guardian, meant to 'escape from confinement, but is disappointed; you have discovered my intentions, sir, and I confess myself completely in your power.
Jack Ar. What! it's a trick, is it ? ---You stole out instead of the other.--come, that's fair, very fair. Well! and how d'you do, coz? do you know I've finished my education since I saw you---I have famously, buc you’ave been very ill, Emmeline? however, we won't talk about that, you're recover'd, and I'm glad on’t with all my heart ! yet, you used me moft kindly, coz.
Emme. It seems I have used every body so, else I think I should not have been so hardly treated. I have been amply punished, sir.
Jack Ar. You have, you have, Emmeline; but you should have kept your promise about the Spanish–I always kepi my word with you, and once you know when we were boys and girls and you and my brother Edward quarrelled about your little tame fawn, did not you cry and ask me to make it up between you! and didn't I bid him kiss the fawn and kiss you,
and ever after wasn't he so fond of you
Emme. Let me beseech you, sir, name not your brother: lead not my mind to thoughts, that, whilst they charm, distract me. I'm sorry I forgot my promise, but you should remember, I also forgot myself;---remind me, and perhaps
Jack Ar. I've a great mind I will !-why the fact is, Emmeline, you offer'd to lend me fifcy pounds, and you only gave me thirty: now you know you owe me the odd twenty.-- I'm the last person on earth to dun people for money, but really when it has been owing so long; upon my soul 'I beg your pardon, but the Alderman cuts lo close: he has educated me fo like a gentleman, and keeps me so like a beggar, that here I am with a head full of the notions of life and dissipation, and a pocket as empty as Oxford in the vacation.
Emme. I regret that my guardian has not left me the means of fulfilling my promise, but when I see my friend Cecilia, I've no doubt but she'll procure what you desire.—And now, fir, let me know my fate: am I to go back to my prison ?
Jack. Ar. Go to prison what! when we've Spanish to keep us out of it? no, that's not fair.--We'll go to London, tò Epsom to the grandmatch; or if, as is most likely, you prefer Miss Ceci. D 2