Want study tips sent straight to your inbox? Sign up for our weekly newsletter!

Cyrano de Bergerac

Full Text

Scene 4.VII.

Full Text Scene 4.VII.

Scene 4.VII.

The same. De Guiche.

DE GUICHE:
It smells good here.

A CADET (humming):
Lo! Lo-lo!

DE GUICHE (looking at him):
What is the matter?--You are very red.

THE CADET:
The matter?--Nothing!--'Tis my blood--boiling at the thought of the coming
battle!

ANOTHER:
Poum, poum--poum. . .

DE GUICHE (turning round):
What's that?

THE CADET (slightly drunk):
Nothing!. . .'Tis a song!--a little. . .

DE GUICHE:
You are merry, my friend!

THE CADET:
The approach of danger is intoxicating!

DE GUICHE (calling Carbon de Castel-Jaloux, to give him an order):
Captain! I. . .
(He stops short on seeing him):
Plague take me! but you look bravely, too!

CARBON (crimson in the face, hiding a bottle behind his back, with an evasive movement):
Oh!. . .

DE GUICHE:
I have one cannon left, and have had it carried there--
(he points behind the scenes):
--in that corner. . .Your men can use it in case of need.

A CADET (reeling slightly):
Charming attention!

ANOTHER (with a gracious smile):
Kind solicitude!

DE GUICHE:
How? they are all gone crazy?
(Drily):
As you are not used to cannon, beware of the recoil.

FIRST CADET:
Pooh!

DE GUICHE (furious, going up to him):
But. . .

THE CADET:
Gascon cannons never recoil!

DE GUICHE (taking him by the arm and shaking him):
You are tipsy!--but what with?

THE CADET (grandiloquently):
--With the smell of powder!

DE GUICHE (shrugging his shoulders and pushing him away, then going quickly to Roxane):
Briefly, Madame, what decision do you deign to take?

ROXANE:
I stay here.

DE GUICHE:
You must fly!

ROXANE:
No! I will stay.

DE GUICHE:
Since things are thus, give me a musket, one of you!

CARBON:
Wherefore?

DE GUICHE:
Because I too--mean to remain.

CYRANO:
At last! This is true valor, Sir!

FIRST CADET:
Then you are Gascon after all, spite of your lace collar?

ROXANE:
What is all this?

DE GUICHE:
I leave no woman in peril.

SECOND CADET (to the first):
Hark you! Think you not we might give him something to eat?

(All the viands reappear as if by magic.)

DE GUICHE (whose eyes sparkle):
Victuals!

THE THIRD CADET:
Yes, you'll see them coming from under every coat!

DE GUICHE (controlling himself, haughtily):
Do you think I will eat your leavings?

CYRANO (saluting him):
You make progress.

DE GUICHE (proudly, with a light touch of accent on the word 'breaking'):
I will fight without br-r-eaking my fast!

FIRST CADET (with wild delight):
Br-r-r-eaking! He has got the accent!

DE GUICHE (laughing):
I?

THE CADET:
'Tis a Gascon!

(All begin to dance.)

CARBON DE CASTEL-JALOUX (who had disappeared behind the rampart, reappearing on the ridge):
I have drawn my pikemen up in line. They are a resolute troop.

(He points to a row of pikes, the tops of which are seen over the ridge.)

DE GUICHE (bowing to Roxane):
Will you accept my hand, and accompany me while I review them?

(She takes it, and they go up toward the rampart. All uncover and follow them.)

CHRISTIAN (going to Cyrano, eagerly):
Tell me quickly!

(As Roxane appears on the ridge, the tops of the lances disappear, lowered for the salute, and a shout is raised. She bows.)

THE PIKEMEN (outside):
Vivat!

CHRISTIAN:
What is this secret?

CYRANO:
If Roxane should. . .

CHRISTIAN:
Should?. . .

CYRANO:
Speak of the letters?. . .

CHRISTIAN:
Yes, I know!. . .

CYRANO:
Do not spoil all by seeming surprised. . .

CHRISTIAN:
At what?

CYRANO:
I must explain to you!. . .Oh! 'tis no great matter--I but thought of it to-
day on seeing her. You have. . .

CHRISTIAN:
Tell quickly!

CYRANO:
You have. . .written to her oftener than you think. . .

CHRISTIAN:
How so?

CYRANO:
Thus, 'faith! I had taken it in hand to express your flame for you!. . .At
times I wrote without saying, 'I am writing!'

CHRISTIAN:
Ah!. . .

CYRANO:
'Tis simple enough!

CHRISTIAN:
But how did you contrive, since we have been cut off, thus. . .to?. . .

CYRANO:
. . .Oh! before dawn. . .I was able to get through. . .

CHRISTIAN (folding his arms):
That was simple, too? And how oft, pray you, have I written?. . .Twice in
the week?. . .Three times?. . .Four?. . .

CYRANO:
More often still.

CHRISTIAN:
What! Every day?

CYRANO:
Yes, every day,--twice.

CHRISTIAN (violently):
And that became so mad a joy for you, that you braved death. . .

CYRANO (seeing Roxane returning):
Hush! Not before her!

(He goes hurriedly into his tent.)