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Dawson Ryder is coming up. Now there's a young man I like, and he's
floating in money. It seems to me that since you seem tired of Howard
Gillespie you might give Mr. Ryder some encouragement. This is the third
time he's been up in a month.
ROSALIND: How did you know I was tired of Howard Gillespie?
MRS. CONNAGE: The poor boy looks so miserable every time he comes.
ROSALIND: That was one of those romantic, pre-battle affairs. They're
MRS. CONNAGE: (Her say said) At any rate, make us proud of you to-night.
ROSALIND: Don't you think I'm beautiful?
MRS. CONNAGE: You know you are.
(From down-stairs is heard the moan of a violin being tuned, the roll of
a drum. MRS. CONNAGE turns quickly to her daughter.)
MRS. CONNAGE: Come!
ROSALIND: One minute!
(Her mother leaves. ROSALIND goes to the glass where she gazes at
herself with great satisfaction. She kisses her hand and touches her
mirrored mouth with it. Then she turns out the lights and leaves the
room. Silence for a moment. A few chords from the piano, the discreet
patter of faint drums, the rustle of new silk, all blend on the
staircase outside and drift in through the partly opened door. Bundled
figures pass in the lighted hall. The laughter heard below becomes
doubled and multiplied. Then some one comes in, closes the door, and
switches on the lights. It is CECELIA. She goes to the chiffonier,
looks in the drawers, hesitates--then to the desk whence she takes the
cigarette-case and extracts one. She lights it and then, puffing and
blowing, walks toward the mirror.)
CECELIA: (In tremendously sophisticated accents) Oh, yes, coming out
is _such_ a farce nowadays, you know. One really plays around so much
before one is seventeen, that it's positively anticlimax. (Shaking hands
with a visionary middle-aged nobleman.) Yes, your grace--I b'lieve
I've heard my sister speak of you. Have a puff--they're very good.
They're--they're Coronas. You don't smoke? What a pity! The king doesn't
allow it, I suppose. Yes, I'll dance.
(So she dances around the room to a tune from down-stairs, her arms
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