[Sits on up-stage side of bed.
LAURA. Will, we’ll always be frank. I said I was ready to go. It’s up to you—when and where.
WILL. The hotel scheme is the best, but, Laura—
WILL. You’re quite sure this is in earnest.
You don’t want to change?
You’ve time enough now.
LAURA. I’ve quite made up my mind. It’s final.
WILL. If you want to work, Burgess has a nice part for you. I’ll telephone and arrange if you say so.
LAURA. Thanks. Say I’ll see him in the morning.
WILL. And, Laura, you know when we were in Denver, and—
LAURA. [Rises hurriedly; crosses right.] Please, please, don’t speak of it.
WILL. I’m sorry, but I’ve got to. I told [Rises, and crosses to left.] Madison [LAURA turns her head.]—pardon me, but I must do this—that if this time ever came I’d have you write him the truth. Before we go any further I’d like you to do that now.
LAURA. Say good-bye? [Turns to WILL.
WILL. Just that.
LAURA. I wouldn’t know how to begin. It will hurt him awfully deeply.
WILL. It’ll be worse if you don’t. He’ll like you for telling him. It would be honest, and that is what he expects.
LAURA. Must I—now?
WILL. I think you should.
LAURA. [Goes to table and sits down.] How shall I begin, Will?
WILL. [Standing back of table.] You mean you don’t know what to say?
WILL. Then I’ll dictate.
LAURA. I’ll do just as you say. You’re the one to tell me now.
WILL. Address it the way you want to. [She complies.] I’m going to be pretty brutal. In the long run I think that is best, don’t you?
LAURA. It’s up to you.
WILL. [Dictating.] “All I have to say can be expressed in one word, ‘good-bye.’ I shall not tell you where I’ve gone, but remind you of what Brockton told you the last time he saw you. He is here now [Pause.], dictating this letter. What I am doing is voluntary—my own suggestion. Don’t grieve. Be happy and successful. I do not love you”—
[She puts pen down; looks at him.
WILL. It has got to go just that way—“I do not love you.” Sign it “Laura.” [She does it.] Fold it, put it in an envelope—seal it—address it. Now shall I mail it?
LAURA. No. If you don’t mind I’d sooner. It’s a sort of a last—last message.
WILL. [Crosses to armchair; gets coat, puts it on.] All right. You’re a little upset now, and I’m going. We are all to dine at Martin’s to-night at seven-thirty. There’ll be a party. Of course you’ll come. [Gets hat and cane.
LAURA. I don’t think I can. You see—