Page:Pieces People Ask For.djvu/236

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118
THE READING-CLUB.

Stella. Indeed! I have studied the character.

Festus. (Aside.) I should think so. (Aloud.) Let us attempt a scene. Come, you shall have your choice.

Stella. Thank you. Then I will choose "the rejection scene."

Festus. (Aside.) Of course you would! (Aloud.) Very well.

Stella. Do you know, Mr. Festus, I think there is something very odd in your attempting a love-scene?

Festus. Do you? I have attempted them, and with success too.

Stella. Ah! I remember there was one attempted here.

Festus. Indeed!

Stella. Yes; but the gentleman's name was not Festus.

Festus. Shall we try the scene?

Stella. You must prompt me if I fail.

Festus. Fail! "In the bright lexicon of youth, there's no such word as fail."

Stella. Ah! but, in attempts at acting, there are many failures.

Festus. True; but yours will not be one of them.

Stella. (Aside.) Another compliment! I begin to like the fellow.

Festus. Now, then, the scene! (Stella takes a bouquet from the table, sits on tête-à-tête, r.)

Scene from "The Marble Heart." Arranged for this piece. Published in No. 15 Reading-Club.

 

PART II.

Scene.Same as before. Enter Festus, c.

Festus. It is astonishing how much a little borrowed plumage becomes a bashful man. The ice once broken by the inspiring thoughts and words of the love-sick "Raphael," I feel now almost equal to the composition and delivery of an energetic and passionate appeal that shall carry the heart of the lady by storm; but then, having once been refused, I dread a second attempt. "A burnt child fears the fire;" and a singed lover trembles before the blazing eyes of the