John. [Giving his arm to Mary.] Now, Mary—now, Kitty. [They pass out.
Liz. Now, Jeremy, sister and me bain’t going off all alone.
Jeremy. [Offering an arm to each.] No further than the church door, I say. I’ve better things to do nor a-giving of my arm to females be they never so full of wiles. And you two do beat many what bain’t near so long in the tusk, ah, that you does.
[Jeremy goes out with the sisters.
Lubin. [To Isabel.] And shall we go off into the meadows, Isabel, seeing that we are quite forgot?
Isabel. No—’tis through these faithless ones as us have learnt to understand the hearts within of we. Let’s bide and get the marriage dinner ready for them first.
[She stretches both her hands towards Lubin, who takes them reverently in his as the Curtain falls.
THE NEW YEAR
Steve Browning, a Blacksmith, also Parish
George Davis, a Carpenter.
Harry moss, a young Tramp.
Dorry Browning, aged twelve.
Act I.—Scene 1.
A country roadside. It is late afternoon and already dusk.
May Browning with Harry moss come slowly forward. Close to a stile which is a little off the road, may stops.
May. There, you don’t need to come no further with I, Harry Moss. You get on quick towards the town afore the night be upon you, and the snow, too.
Harry. I don’t care much about leaving you like this on the roadside, May. And that’s the truth, ’tis.
May. Don’t you take no more thought for I, Harry. ’Tis a good boy as you’ve been to I since the day when we fell in together. But now there bain’t no more need for you to hold back your steps, going slow and heavy when you might run spry and light. For ’tis home as I be comed to now, I be. You go your way.
Harry. I see naught of any house afore us or behind. ’Tis very likely dusk as is upon us, or may happen ’tis the fog getting up from the river.
May. [Coughing.] Look you across that stile, Harry. There be a field path, bain’t there?
Harry. [Taking a few steps to the right and peering through the gloom.] Ah, and that there be.
May. And at t’other end of it a house what’s got a garden fence all round.
Harry. Ah—and ’tis so. And now as I comes to look there be a light shining from out the windows of it, too, though ’tis shining dim-like in the mist.
May. ’Tis that yonder’s my home, Harry. There’s the door where I must stand and knock.