Stu. We are sincere too, and practice what we teach. Let the grave pedant say as much—But now to business. The jewels are disposed of; and Beverley again worth money. He waits to count his gold out, and then comes hither. If my design succeeds, this night we finish with him. Go to your lodgings, and be busy. You understand conveyances, and can make ruin sure.
Bat. Better stop here. The sale of this reversion may be talked of; there’s danger in’t.
Stu. No; ’tis the mark I aim at. We’ll thrive, and laugh. You are the purchaser, and there’s the payment. (Giving a pocket book.) He thinks you rich; and so you shall be. Enquire for titles, and deal hardly; ’twill look like honesty.
Bat. How if he suspects us?
Stu. Leave it to Me. I study hearts, and when to work upon them. Go to your lodgings; and if we come, be busy over papers. Talk of a thoughtless age, of gaming and extravagance, you have a face for’t.
Bat. A feeling too that would avoid it.
We push too far; but I have cautioned you. If
it ends ill, you’ll think of me; and so adieu.
Stu. This fellow sins by halves; his fears are conscience to him. I’ll turn these fears to use. Rogues that dread shame, will still be greater rogues to hide their guilt—This shall be thought of. Lewson grows troublesome—we must get rid of him—he knows too much. I have a tale for Beverley; part of it truth too. He shall call Lewson to account. If it succeeds, ’tis well; if not, we must try other means—But here he comes—I must dissemble.
Look to the door there! (In a seeming fright.)—My friend!—I thought of other visitors.
Bev. No: these shall guard you from them. (Offering notes) Take them, and use them cautiously. The world deals hardly by us.
Stu. And shall I leave you destitute? No: Your wants are greatest. Another climate may treat me kinder. The shelter of to-night takes me from this.
Bev. Let these be your support then. Yet is there need of parting? I may have means again; we’ll share them, and live wisely.
Stu. No. I should tempt you on. Habit is nature in me; ruin can’t cure it. Even now I would be gaming. Taught by experience as I am, and knowing this poor sum is all that’s left us, I am for venturing still. And say I am to blame; yet will this little supply our wants? No; we must put it out to usury. Whether ’tis madness in me, or some resistless impulse of good fortune, I yet am ignorant; but—
Bev. Take it, and succeed then. I’ll try no more.
Stu. ’Tis surely impulse; it pleads so strongly—But You are cold—we’ll e’en part here then. And for this last reserve, keep it for better uses; I’ll have none on’t. I thank you though, and will seek fortune singly—One thing I had forgot—