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Aur. Away, infernal! 'tis not thee; 'tis the true Don Melchor that I would see.
Mel. Hell and furies!
(Runs out, shrieking. Mel. This is a riddle past my finding out, to send for me, and then to shun me; but here's one shall resolve it for me : Camilla, what dost thou there? Cam. Help, help! I shall be carried away bodily.
[She rises up, overthrows the table and lights,
and runs out. The scene shuts. Mel. (Alone.] Why, Aurelia, Camilla! they are both run out of hearing! this amazes me; what can the meaning of it be? Sure she has heard of my unfaithfulness, and was resolved to punish me by this contrivance ! to put an affront upon me by this abrupt departure, as I did on her by my seeming absence.
Enter THEODOSI A and BEATRIX. Theo. Don Melchor! is it you, my love, that have frighted Aurelia so terribly?
Mel. Alas, madam! I know not; but, coming hither by your appointment, and thinking myself secure in the night without disguise, perhaps it might work upon her fancy, because she thought me absent.
Theo. Since 'tis so unluckily fallen out, that she knows you are at Madrid, it can no longer be kept a secret ; therefore, you must now pretend openly to me, and run the risk of a denial from my father.
Mel. O, madam, there's no question bụt he'll refuse me: For, alas! what is it he can see in me worthy of that honour? Or, if he should be so partial to me, as some in the world are, to think me va
liant, learned, and not altogether a fool, yet my want of fortune would weigh down all.
Theo. When he has refused you his consent, I may with justice dispose of myself; and that, while you are constant, shall never be to any but yourself: In witness of which, accept this diamond, as a pledge of my heart's firmness to you.
Beat. Madam, your father is coming this way.
Theo. Tis no matter; do not stir: since he must know you are returned, let him now see you.
Enter Don ALONZO. Alon. Daughter, what make you here at this unseasonable hour?
Alon. I know what you would say, that you heard a noise, and ran hither to see what it might be
-Bless us! who is this with you? Mel. 'Tis your servant, Don Melchor ; just returned from St Sebastians.
Alon. But, sir, I thought you had been upon the sea for Flanders.
Mel. I had so designed it.
Alon. But, why came you back from St Sebastians?
Mel. As for that, sir, 'tis not material.
Theo. An unexpected law-suit has called him back from St Sebastians.
Alon. And how fares my son-in-law, that lives there?
Mel. In Catholic health, sir.
Mel. I had, sir, but I was set upon by the way, by picarons: and, in spite of my resistance, robbed, and my portmanteau taken from me.
Theo. And this was that which he was now desiring me to excuse to you.
Alon. If my credit, friends, or counsel, can do you any service in your suit, I hope you will command them freely.
Mel. When I have dispatched some private business, I shall not fail to trouble you ; till then, humbly kisses your hands the most obliged of your servants.
[Exit MELCHOR. Alon. Daughter, now this cavalier is gone, what occasion brought you out so late ?-I know what you would say, that it is melancholy; a tincture of the hypochondria you mean: But, what cause have you
for this melancholy? Give me your hand, and answer me without ambages, or ambiguities.
Theo. He will find out I have given away my ring-- I must prevent him-Sir, I am ashamed to confess it to you; but, in hope of your indulgence, I have lost the table diamond you gave
Alon. You would say, The fear of my displeasure has caused the perturbation in you ; well, do not disquiet yourself too much; you say 'tis
say so too. "Tis stolen; and that by some thief, I take it: But, I will go and consult the astrologer immediately.
[He is going Theo. What have I done? To avoid one inconvenience, I have run into another: This devil of an astrologer will discover that Don Melchor has it.
[ Aside. Alon. When did you lose this diamond: The minute and second I should know; but the hour will serve for the degree ascending.
Theo. Sir, the precise time I know not; but it was betwixt six and seven in the evening, às near as I can guess.
Alon. "Tis enough ; by all the stars, I'll have it for you: Therefore, go in, and suppose it on your finger.
Beat. I'll watch you at a distance, sir, that my Englishman may have wherewithal to answer you.
[Aside. Exeunt Theo. Beat. Alon. This melancholy, wherewith my daughter laboureth, is-a-I know what I would say, is a certain species of the hysterical disease; or a certain motion, caused by a certain appetite, which, at a certain time, heaveth in her, like a certain motion of an earthquake
Enter BELLAMY. Bel. This is the place, and very near the time that Theodosia appoints her meeting with Don Melchor. He is this night otherwise disposed of with Aurelia: 'Tis but trying my fortune, to tell her of his infidelity, and my love. If she yields, she makes me happy; if not, I shall be sure Don Melchor has not planted the arms of Spain in the fort before me. However, I'll push my fortune, as sure as I am an Englishman.
Alon. Sennor Inglis, I know your voice, though I cannot perfectly discern you.
Bel. How the devil came he to cross me?
Alon. I was just coming to have asked another favour of you.
Bel. Without ceremony, command me, sir.
Alon. My daughter Theodosia has lost a fair diamond from her finger, the time betwixt six and seven this evening; now, I desire you, sir, to erect a scheme for it, and if it be lost, or stolen, to restore it to me.
This is all, sir. Bel. There is no end of this old fellow; thus will he bait me from day to day, till my ignorance be found out.
[Aside. Alon. Now is he casting a figure by the art of memory, and making a judgment of it to himself. This astrology is a very mysterious speculation.
Bel. 'Tis a madness for me to hope I can deceive him longer. Since then he must know I am no astrologer, I'll discover it myself to him, and blush once for all.
[Aside. Alon. Well, sir, and what do the stars hold forth? What says nimble master Mercury to the matter?
Bel. Sir, not to keep you longer in ignorance, I must ingenuously declare to you, that I am not the man for whom you take me. Some smattering in astrology I have; which my friends, by their indiscretion, have blown abroad, beyond my intentions. But you are not a person to be imposed on like the vulgar: Therefore, to satisfy you in one word, my skill goes not far enough to give you knowledge of what you
desire from me. Alon. You have said enough, sir, to persuade me of
your science; if fame had not published it, yet this very humility of yours were enough to confirm me in the belief of it.
Bel. Death, you make me mad, sir! Will you have me swear? As I am a gentleman, a man of the town, one who wears good cloaths, eats, drinks, and wenches abundantly, I am a damned ignorant, and senseless fellow.
Enter Beatrix. Alon. How now, gentlewoman :—What, are you going to relief by moonshine?
Beat. I was going on a very charitable office, to help a friend that was gravelled in a very doubtful business.
Bel. Some good news, fortune, I beseech thee.
Beat. But now I have found this learned gentleman, I shall make bold to propound a question to him from a lady.
Alon. I will have my own question first resolved.