Scene 2.III.

Ragueneau, Lise, Cyrano, then the musketeer.

What's o'clock?

RAGUENEAU (bowing low):
Six o'clock.

CYRANO (with emotion):
In one hour's time!

(He paces up and down the shop.)

RAGUENEAU (following him):
Bravo! I saw. . .

Well, what saw you, then?

Your combat!. . .


That in the Burgundy Hotel, 'faith!

CYRANO (contemptuously):
Ah!. . .the duel!

RAGUENEAU (admiringly):
Ay! the duel in verse!. . .

He can talk of naught else!

Well! Good! let be!

RAGUENEAU (making passes with a spit that he catches up):
'At the envoi's end, I touch!. . .At the envoi's end, I touch!'. . .'Tis fine, fine!
(With increasing enthusiasm):
'At the envoi's end--'

What hour is it now, Ragueneau?

RAGUENEAU (stopping short in the act of thrusting to look at the clock):
Five minutes after six!. . .'I touch!'
(He straightens himself):
. . .Oh! to write a ballade!

LISE (to Cyrano, who, as he passes by the counter, has absently shaken hands with her):
What's wrong with your hand?

Naught; a slight cut.

Have you been in some danger?

None in the world.

LISE (shaking her finger at him):
Methinks you speak not the truth in saying that!

Did you see my nose quiver when I spoke? 'Faith, it must have been a
monstrous lie that should move it!
(Changing his tone):
I wait some one here. Leave us alone, and disturb us for naught an it were
not for crack of doom!

But 'tis impossible; my poets are coming. . .

LISE (ironically):
Oh, ay, for their first meal o' the day!

Prythee, take them aside when I shall make you sign to do so. . .What's

Ten minutes after six.

CYRANO (nervously seating himself at Ragueneau's table, and drawing some paper
toward him):
A pen!. . .

RAGUENEAU (giving him the one from behind his ear):
Here--a swan's quill.

A MUSKETEER (with fierce mustache, enters, and in a stentorian voice):

(Lise goes up to him quickly.)

CYRANO (turning round):
Who's that?

'Tis a friend of my wife--a terrible warrior--at least so says he himself.

CYRANO (taking up the pen, and motioning Ragueneau away):
(To himself):
I will write, fold it, give it her, and fly!
(Throws down the pen):
Coward!. . .But strike me dead if I dare to speak to her,. . .ay, even one
single word!
(To Ragueneau):
What time is it?

A quarter after six!. . .

CYRANO (striking his breast):
Ay--a single word of all those here! here! But writing, 'tis easier done. .
(He takes up the pen):
Go to, I will write it, that love-letter! Oh! I have writ it and rewrit it
in my own mind so oft that it lies there ready for pen and ink; and if I lay
but my soul by my letter-sheet, 'tis naught to do but to copy from it.

(He writes. Through the glass of the door the silhouettes of their figures move uncertainly and hesitatingly.)