Cyrano de Bergerac

Full Text

Scene 2.VI.

Full Text Scene 2.VI.

Scene 2.VI.

Cyrano, Roxane.

CYRANO:
Blessed be the moment when you condescend--
Remembering that humbly I exist--
To come to meet me, and to say. . .to tell?. . .

ROXANE (who has unmasked):
To thank you first of all. That dandy count,
Whom you checkmated in brave sword-play
Last night,. . .he is the man whom a great lord,
Desirous of my favor. . .

CYRANO:
Ha, De Guiche?

ROXANE (casting down her eyes):
Sought to impose on me. . .for husband. . .

CYRANO:
Ay! Husband!--dupe-husband!. . .Husband a la mode!
(Bowing):
Then I fought, happy chance! sweet lady, not
For my ill favor--but your favors fair!

ROXANE:
Confession next!. . .But, ere I make my shrift,
You must be once again that brother-friend
With whom I used to play by the lake-side!. . .

CYRANO:
Ay, you would come each spring to Bergerac!

ROXANE:
Mind you the reeds you cut to make your swords?. . .

CYRANO:
While you wove corn-straw plaits for your dolls' hair!

ROXANE:
Those were the days of games!. . .

CYRANO:
And blackberries!. . .

ROXANE:
In those days you did everything I bid!. . .

CYRANO:
Roxane, in her short frock, was Madeleine. . .

ROXANE:
Was I fair then?

CYRANO:
You were not ill to see!

ROXANE:
Ofttimes, with hands all bloody from a fall,
You'd run to me! Then--aping mother-ways--
I, in a voice would-be severe, would chide,--
(She takes his hand):
'What is this scratch, again, that I see here?'
(She starts, surprised):
Oh! 'Tis too much! What's this?
(Cyrano tries to draw away his hand):
No, let me see!
At your age, fie! Where did you get that scratch?

CYRANO:
I got it--playing at the Porte de Nesle.

ROXANE (seating herself by the table, and dipping her handkerchief in a glass of water):
Give here!

CYRANO (sitting by her):
So soft! so gay maternal-sweet!

ROXANE:
And tell me, while I wipe away the blood,
How many 'gainst you?

CYRANO:
Oh! A hundred--near.

ROXANE:
Come, tell me!

CYRANO:
No, let be. But you, come tell
The thing, just now, you dared not. . .

ROXANE (keeping his hand):
Now, I dare!
The scent of those old days emboldens me!
Yes, now I dare. Listen. I am in love.

CYRANO:
Ah!. . .

ROXANE:
But with one who knows not.

CYRANO:
Ah!. . .

ROXANE:
Not yet.

CYRANO:
Ah!. . .

ROXANE:
But who, if he knows not, soon shall learn.

CYRANO:
Ah!. . .

ROXANE:
A poor youth who all this time has loved
Timidly, from afar, and dares not speak. . .

CYRANO:
Ah!. . .

ROXANE:
Leave your hand; why, it is fever-hot!--
But I have seen love trembling on his lips.

CYRANO:
Ah!. . .

ROXANE (bandaging his hand with her handkerchief):
And to think of it! that he by chance--
Yes, cousin, he is of your regiment!

CYRANO:
Ah!. . .

ROXANE (laughing):
--Is cadet in your own company!

CYRANO:
Ah!. . .

ROXANE:
On his brow he bears the genius-stamp;
He is proud, noble, young, intrepid, fair. . .

CYRANO (rising suddenly, very pale):
Fair!

ROXANE:
Why, what ails you?

CYRANO:
Nothing; 'tis. . .
(He shows his hand, smiling):
This scratch!

ROXANE:
I love him; all is said. But you must know
I have only seen him at the Comedy. . .

CYRANO:
How? You have never spoken?

ROXANE:
Eyes can speak.

CYRANO:
How know you then that he. . .?

ROXANE:
Oh! people talk
'Neath the limes in the Place Royale. . .
Gossip's chat
Has let me know. . .

CYRANO:
He is cadet?

ROXANE:
In the Guards.

CYRANO:
His name?

ROXANE:
Baron Christian de Neuvillette.

CYRANO:
How now?. . .He is not of the Guards!

ROXANE:
To-day
He is not join your ranks, under Captain
Carbon de Castel-Jaloux.

CYRANO:
Ah, how quick,
How quick the heart has flown!. . .But, my poor child. . .

THE DUENNA (opening the door):
The cakes are eaten, Monsieur Bergerac!

CYRANO:
Then read the verses printed on the bags!
(She goes out):
. . .My poor child, you who love but flowing words,
Bright wit,--what if he be a lout unskilled?

ROXANE:
No, his bright locks, like D'Urfe's heroes. . .

CYRANO:
Ah!
A well-curled pate, and witless tongue, perchance!

ROXANE:
Ah no! I guess--I feel--his words are fair!

CYRANO:
All words are fair that lurk 'neath fair mustache!
--Suppose he were a fool!. . .

ROXANE (stamping her foot):
Then bury me!

CYRANO (after a pause):
Was it to tell me this you brought me here?
I fail to see what use this serves, Madame.

ROXANE:
Nay, but I felt a terror, here, in the heart,
On learning yesterday you were Gascons
All of your company. . .

CYRANO:
And we provoke
All beardless sprigs that favor dares admit
'Midst us pure Gascons--(pure! Heaven save the mark!
They told you that as well?

ROXANE:
Ah! Think how I
Trembled for him!

CYRANO (between his teeth):
Not causelessly!

ROXANE:
But when
Last night I saw you,--brave, invincible,--
Punish that dandy, fearless hold your own
Against those brutes, I thought--I thought, if he
Whom all fear, all--if he would only. . .

CYRANO:
Good.
I will befriend your little Baron.

ROXANE:
Ah!
You'll promise me you will do this for me?
I've always held you as a tender friend.

CYRANO:
Ay, ay.

ROXANE:
Then you will be his friend?

CYRANO:
I swear!

ROXANE:
And he shall fight no duels, promise!

CYRANO:
None.

ROXANE:
You are kind, cousin! Now I must be gone.
(She puts on her mask and veil quickly; then, absently):
You have not told me of your last night's fray.
Ah, but it must have been a hero-fight!. . .
--Bid him to write.
(She sends him a kiss with her fingers):
How good you are!

CYRANO:
Ay! Ay!

ROXANE:
A hundred men against you? Now, farewell.--
We are great friends?

CYRANO:
Ay, ay!

ROXANE:
Oh, bid him write!
You'll tell me all one day--A hundred men!--
Ah, brave!. . .How brave!

CYRANO (bowing to her):
I have fought better since.

(She goes out. Cyrano stands motionless, with eyes on the ground. A silence. The door (right) opens. Ragueneau looks in.)