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DON JOHN

A proper squire. And who, and who? Which way looks he?

DON JOHN

He’s a very fancy gentleman. And who’s the girl who has caught his eye?

BORACHIO

Marry, on Hero, the daughter and heir of Leonato.

BORACHIO

Hero, the daughter and heir of Leonato.

DON JOHN

A very forward March-chick! How came you to this?

DON JOHN

A lively young one! How did you learn about this?

BORACHIO

45Being entertained for a perfumer, as I was smoking a musty
room, comes me the Prince and Claudio, hand in hand, in
sad conference. I whipped me behind the arras, and there
heard it agreed upon that the Prince should woo Hero for
himself, and having obtained her, give her to Count
50Claudio.

BORACHIO

I was hired to perfume all the rooms in Leonato’s house. As I was working on one musty room, the Prince and Claudio entered. They were in the middle of a serious conversation. I quickly hid behind a tapestry and heard them agree that the Prince would court Hero tonight at the dance and, once he won her consent to marry, would give her to Claudio.

DON JOHN

Come, come, let us thither. This may prove food to my
displeasure. That young start-up hath all the glory of my
overthrow. If I can cross him any way, I bless myself every
way. You are both sure, and will assist me?

DON JOHN

Come, let’s go to the dance. This just may cheer me up. Claudio, the young upstart, was responsible for keeping me from gaining power over my brother. If there’s any way I can spoil his life, I’ll be overjoyed. You’ll both help me, right?

CONRAD

55To the death, my lord.

CONRAD

Until the day we die, my lord.

DON JOHN

Let us to the great supper. Their cheer is the greater that I
am subdued. Would the cook were o' my mind! Shall we go
prove what’s to be done?

DON JOHN

Let’s go to this great feast. They’ll be even happier now that my mood has lightened. It’s too bad the cook doesn’t think like me; she would have poisoned them all if she did. Should we go check out the scene?

BORACHIO

We’ll wait upon your lordship.

BORACHIO

Lead the way, sir.
Exeunt
They all exit.