If: a play in four acts eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 64 pages of information about If.

No.  I said I’d do nothing to alter the past.  And I won’t.  I’m too content, Mary.  But this can’t alter it.  This is nothing.

MARY

What were you going to catch the train for, John?

JOHN

For London.  I wasn’t at the office then.  It was a business appointment.  There was a man who had promised to get me a job, and I was going up to . . .

MARY

John, it may alter your whole life!

JOHN

Now do listen, Mary, do listen.  He never turned up.  I got a letter from him apologising to me before I posted mine to him.  It turned out he never meant to help me, mere meaningless affabilities.  He never came to London that day at all.  I should have taken the next train back.  That can’t affect the future.

MARY

N-no, John.  Still, I don’t like it.

JOHN

What difference could it make?

MARY

N-n-no.

JOHN

Think how we met.  We met at ARCHIE’s wedding.  I take it one has to go to one’s brother’s wedding.  It would take a pretty big change to alter that.  And. you were her bridesmaid.  We were bound to meet.  And having once met, well, there you are.  If we’d met by chance, in a train, or anything like that, well, then I admit some little change might alter it.  But when we met at ARCHIE’s wedding and you were her bridesmaid, why, Mary, it’s a cert.  Besides, I believe in predestination.  It was our fate; we couldn’t have missed it.

MARY

No, I suppose not; still . .

JOHN

Well, what?

MARY

I don’t like it.

JOHN

O, Mary, I have so longed to catch that infernal train.  Just think of it, annoyed on and off for ten years by the eight-fifteen.

MARY

I’d rather you didn’t, John.

JOHN

But why?

MARY

O, John, suppose there’s a railway accident?  You might be killed, and we should never meet.

JOHN

There wasn’t.

MARY

There wasn’t, John?  What do you mean?

JOHN

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Project Gutenberg
If: a play in four acts from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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