Mrs. Bev. He may want a comforter, perhaps. But don’t upbraid him, Charlotte. We shan’t be absent long. Come, Sir, since I must be so obliged.
Lew. ’Tis I that am obliged. An
hour or less will be sufficient for us. We shall
find you at home, madam? (To Charlotte.)
[Exit with Mrs. Beverley.
Char. Certainly. I have but little inclination
to appear abroad. O! this brother! this brother!
to what wretchedness has he reduced us!
SCENE VIII. Changes to STUKELY’S_ lodgings._
Stu. That Lewson suspects me, ’tis too plain. Yet why should he suspect me? I appear the friend of Beverley as well as he. But I am rich it seems: and so I am; thanks to another’s folly and my own wisdom. To what use is wisdom, but to take advantage of the weak? This Beverley’s my fool: I cheat him, and he calls me friend. But more business must be done yet. His wife’s jewels are unsold;
so is the reversion of his uncle’s estate. I must have these too. And then there’s a treasure above all. I love his wife. Before she knew this Beverley, I loved her; but like a cringing fool, bowed at a distance, while He stept in and won her. Never, never will I forgive him for it. My pride, as well as love, is wounded by this conquest. I must have vengeance. Those hints, this morning, were well thrown in. Already they have fastened on her. If jealousy should weaken her affections, want may corrupt her virtue. My hate rejoyces in the hope. These jewels may do much. He shall demand them of her; which, when mine, shall be converted to special purposes.—What now, Bates?
Bates. Is it a wonder then to see me? The forces are in readiness, and only wait for orders. Where’s Beverley?
Stu. At last night’s rendezvous, waiting for Me. Is Dawson with you?
Bates. Dressed like a nobleman; with money in his pocket, and a set of dice that shall deceive the devil.
Stu. That fellow has a head to undo a nation. But for the rest, they are such low-mannered, ill-looking dogs, I wonder Beverley has not suspected them.
Bates. No matter for manners and looks: do You supply them with money, and they are gentlemen by profession. The passion of gaming casts such a mist before the eyes, that the nobleman shall be surrounded with sharpers, and imagine himself in the best company.
Stu. There’s that Williams too: it was He, I suppose, that called at Beverley’s with the note this morning. What directions did you give him?
Bates. To knock loud, and be clamorous. Did not you see him?
Stu. No. The fool sneaked off with Jarvis. Had he appeared within-doors, as directed, the note had been discharged. I waited there on purpose. I want the women to think well of me; for Lewson’s grown suspicious; he told me so himself.