[The DUKE listens with bowed head. GOUROC goes to window.
[To GOUROC, as drums draw near.]
Is it the patrol?
No. Tis the guard of the death-cart, with to-day’s load for the guillotine.
[Hiding her face.]
This constant agitation is torture.
You can easily escape it, Mademoiselle. Accept the refuge I offer you.
We will, Marquis, at once. Come to my room, and we will complete our plans.
My child, prepare to leave this house to-night, in haste and in secret.
[Exit with GOUROC.
Fly from this house to-night?—No! I will not go! And yet I must, or tell my father the secret I have kept from him so long.
I am not at home to anyone. I will not brook intrusion here.
I’ll keep out all I can.
Paul is coming!—How can I tell him we must part?
[PAUL enters. DIANE turns quickly toward him.
[Absorbed in documents he is carrying. Crossing slowly to desk, he lays the papers down and, turning, sees DIANE.]
Diane! Thank heaven you’re alone!
[DIANE checks him by a warning gesture; crosses quickly to the door, listens a moment, then slowly approaches PAUL, looking back anxiously.]
Have you no word of welcome for a very weary friend?
[Throwing herself with nervous impetuosity into his arms.]
Ah, Paul! God bless and keep you!
God blessed me beyond measure, when he made your heart my own.
[Leading him with nervous intensity to a chair.]
Sit here—sit here!
[She sits beside him.]
Let me look at your face, and listen to your voice,
while I can—while
How strangely you say this!