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If Only etc. eBook

Augustus Harris
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 114 pages of information about If Only etc..

MRS. TEMPENNY (off).

Rembrandt—­Rembrandt!

(Door opens, enter MRS. TEMPENNY; followed by MRS. SYLVESTER.)

MRS. TEMPENNY.

He isn’t here.  Come in, dear; I am sure he will be pleased to see you—­we will wait.

MRS. SYLVESTER.

My husband hates to be disturbed in his studio.  He says he can never work again all day.

MRS. TEMPENNY.

Artists are so different; Mr. Sylvester is more highly strung than Rembrandt, I sometimes think.  Rembrandt likes to see his friends in his studio.  I wonder where he has gone.

MRS. SYLVESTER.

Gone to have a drink, I daresay.

MRS. TEMPENNY.

Adelaide!

MRS. SYLVESTER.

He does drink, doesn’t he—­when he’s thirsty anyhow?  And artists are so often thirsty.  Charles is often thirsty.  He says it is a characteristic feature of the artistic temperament.  Ah! my dear.

MRS. TEMPENNY.

Why that sigh?

MRS. SYLVESTER (sighing again).

Heigh ho!

MRS. TEMPENNY (affectionately).

Adelaide?

MRS. SYLVESTER.

Eugenia!

(They touch each other’s hands sympathetically.)

MRS. TEMPENNY.

Aren’t you happy, Adelaide?

MRS. SYLVESTER.

I am married to an artist, Euna!  I wouldn’t say as much to anybody else, but we were girls at school together.

MRS. TEMPENNY.

But, dear Addie, everybody knows you are married to an artist.

MRS. SYLVESTER.

I mean I would not say to anybody else that I am not entirely happy.

MRS. TEMPENNY (enthusiastically).

Do tell me all about it.

MRS. SYLVESTER.

I am jealous.

MRS. TEMPENNY.

Of whom?

MRS. SYLVESTER.

Oh no one—­of everybody; of my husband’s past, which I know—­of his life to-day, which is too circumspect to be sincere.

MRS. TEMPENNY (with misgiving).

But—­but Rembrandt’s life is also circumspect.

MRS. SYLVESTER.

Poor child.

MRS. TEMPENNY.

You pity me?

MRS. SYLVESTER.

Horribly.  To be married to a painter—­what a fate!  To have a husband who is shut up alone all day with a creature who—­who wears—­

MRS. TEMPENNY.

Rembrandt’s models do—.

MRS. SYLVESTER.

Wear—?

MRS. TEMPENNY.

Plenty!

MRS. SYLVESTER (gloomily).

Clothes sometimes cover a multitude of sins.  They are no guarantee. 
Rosaline wore them!

MRS. TEMPENNY.

Rosaline?

MRS. SYLVESTER.

You have not heard of Rosaline?

MRS. TEMPENNY.

No.  A model?

MRS. SYLVESTER.

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