TRESHAM. Oh, to my chamber! When we meet there next, We shall be friends. [They bear out the body of MERTOUN.] Will she die, Guendolen?
GUENDOLEN. Where are you taking me?
TRESHAM. He fell just here. Now answer me. Shall you in your whole life --You who have nought to do with Mertoun's fate, Now you have seen his breast upon the turf, Shall you e'er walk this way if you can help? When you and Austin wander arm-in-arm Through our ancestral grounds, will not a shade Be ever on the meadow and the waste-- Another kind of shade than when the night Shuts the woodside with all its whispers up? But will you ever so forget his breast As carelessly to cross this bloody turf Under the black yew avenue? That's well! You turn your head: and I then?--
GUENDOLEN. What is done Is done. My care is for the living. Thorold, Bear up against this burden: more remains To set the neck to!
TRESHAM. Dear and ancient trees My fathers planted, and I loved so well! What have I done that, like some fabled crime Of yore, lets loose a Fury leading thus Her miserable dance amidst you all? Oh, never more for me shall winds intone With all your tops a vast antiphony, Demanding and responding in God's praise! Hers ye are now, not mine! Farewell--farewell!
SCENE II.--MILDRED'S Chamber MILDRED alone
He comes not! I have heard of those who seemed Resourceless in prosperity,--you thought Sorrow might slay them when she listed; yet Did they so gather up their diffused strength At her first menace, that they bade her strike, And stood and laughed her subtlest skill to scorn. Oh, 'tis not so with me! The first woe fell, And the rest fall upon it, not on me: Else should I bear that Henry comes not?--fails Just this first night out of so many nights? Loving is done with. Were he sitting now, As so few hours since, on that seat, we'd love No more--contrive no thousand happy ways To hide love from the loveless, any more. I think I might have urged some little point In my defence, to Thorold; he was breathless For the least hint of a defence: but no, The first shame over, all that would might fall. No Henry! Yet I merely sit and think The morn's deed o'er and o'er. I must have crept Out of myself. A Mildred that has lost Her lover--oh, I dare not look upon Such woe! I crouch away from it! 'Tis she, Mildred, will break her heart, not I! The world Forsakes me: only Henry's left me--left? When I have lost him, for he does not come, And I sit stupidly... Oh Heaven, break up This worse than anguish, this mad apathy, By any means or any messenger!
MILDRED. Come in! Heaven hears me! [Enter TRESHAM.] You? alone? Oh, no more cursing!