Chloe [softly] Charlie! [He comes to her.] Love me!
Charles. [Embracing her] There, old girl! I know women are funny at these times. You want a good night, that’s all.
Chloe. You haven’t finished dinner, have you? Go back, and I’ll go to bed quite soon. Charlie, don’t stop loving me.
Charles. Stop? Not much.
[While he is again embracing
her, Anna steals from behind the
screen to the door, opens it noiselessly, and passes through,
but it clicks as she shuts it.]
Chloe. [Starting violently] Oh-h!
[He comes to her.]
Charles. What is it? What is it? You are nervy, my dear.
Chloe. [Looking round with a little laugh] I don’t know. Go on, Charlie. I’ll be all right when this head’s gone.
Charles. [Stroking her forehead and, looking at her doubtfully] You go to bed; I won’t be late coming up.
[He turn, and goes, blowing a kiss from the doorway. When he is gone, Chloe gets up and stands in precisely the attitude in which she stood at the beginning of the Act, thinking, and thinking. And the door is opened, and the face of the maid peers round at her.]
Hillcrist’sstudy next morning.
Jill coming from Left, looks in at the open French window.
Jill. [Speaking to Rolf, invisible] Come in here. There’s no one.
[She goes in. Rolf joins her, coming from the garden.]
Rolf. Jill, I just wanted to say—Need we?
Seeing you yesterday—it did seem rotten.
Jill. We didn’t begin it.
Rolf. No; but you don’t understand. If you’d made yourself, as father has——
Jill. I hope I should be sorry.
Rolf. [Reproachfully] That isn’t like you. Really he can’t help thinking he’s a public benefactor.
Jill. And we can’t help thinking he’s a pig. Sorry!
Rolf. If the survival of the fittest is right——
Jill. He may be fitter, but he’s not going to survive.
Rolf. [Distracted] It looks like it, though.
Jill. Is that all you came to say?
Rolf. Suppose we joined, couldn’t we stop it?
Jill. I don’t feel like joining.
Rolf. We did shake hands.
Jill. One can’t fight and not grow bitter.
Rolf. I don’t feel bitter.
Jill. Wait; you’ll feel it soon enough.
Rolf. Why? [Attentively] About Chloe? I do think your mother’s manner to her is——