UTC
The Drunkard; or, the Fallen Saved
Adapted by W.H. Smith
New York: WM. Taylor and Co.1850

SCENE V.—Interior of the cottage as in Act 1st.—The furniture very plain.—A want of comfort and order.—Table and two chairs, R. C.

Enter MARY from set door, R. S. E.Her dress plain and patched, but put on with neatness and care.—She is weeping.


Mary.

  Oh, Heaven, have mercy on me!—aid me!—strengthen me! Weigh not thy poor creature down with woes beyond her strength to bear. Much I fear my suffering mother never can survive the night, and Edward comes not, and when he does arrive, how will it be? Alas, alas! my dear, lost husband! I think I could nerve myself against every thing but—Oh, misery! this agony of suspense! it is too horrible.

Enter JULIA from room, R. S. E.She is barefooted.—Dress clean, but very poor.


Julia.

  Mother! dear mother, what makes you cry? I feel so sorry when you cry—don't cry any more, dear mother.


Mary.

  (L.) I cannot help it, dearest. Do not tell your poor father what has happened in his absence, Julia.


Julia.

  No, dear mother, if you wish me not. Will it make him cry, mother? When I see you cry it makes me cry, too.


Mary.

  Hush, dear one, hush! Alas, he is unhappy enough already.


Julia.

  Yes. Poor father! I cried last night when father came home, and was so sick. Oh, he looked so pale, and when I kissed him for good night, his face was as hot as fire. This morning he could not eat his breakfast, could he? What makes him sick so often, mother?


Mary.

  Hush, sweet one!


Julia.

  Dear grandma so sick, too. Doctor and nurse both looked so sorry. Grandma won't die to-night, will she, mother?


Mary.

  Father of mercies! This is too much. [Weeps.] Be very quiet, Julia, I am going in to see poor grandma, [Crossing, R.] Oh, Religion! sweet solace of the wretched heart! Support me! aid me, in this dreadful trial. [Exit into room, R. S. E.


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Julia.

  Poor, dear mother. When grandma dies, she'll go to live in heaven, for she's good. Parson Heartall told me so, and he never tells fibs, for he is good, too.

Enter WILLIAM gently, D. in F.


William.

  Julia, where is your mother, darling? [Julia puts her finger on her lip, and points to door.


William.

  Ah, she comes.

Enter MARY, R. S. E.


  How is poor Mrs. Wilson now, madam?


Mary.

  Near the end of all earthly trouble, William. She lies in broken slumber. But where is my poor Edward? Have you not found him?


William.

  Yes, ma'am, I found him in the ta—in the village—he had fallen, and slightly hurt his forehead; he bade me come before, so as you should not be frightened. He'll be here soon now.


Mary.

  Faithful friend. I wish you had not left him. Was he—Oh, what a question for a doating wife—was he sober, William?


William.

  I must not lie, dear lady. He had been taking some liquor, but I think not much—all I hope will be well.


Edward.

  [Sings without.] "Wine cures the gout," &c., Ha! ha!


Mary.

  Oh, great Heaven! [William rushes out, C. D. and off, L. U. E., and re-enters with Edward drunk and noisy.—William trying to soothe him, he staggers as he passes door-way.


Edward.

  I've had a glorious time, Bill. Old Cribbs—


Mary.

  (R.) Hush! dearest!


Edward.

  Why should I be silent? I am not a child. I—


Mary.

  My mother, Edward, my dear mother!


Edward.

  [Sinks in chair.] Heaven's wrath on my hard heart. I—I—forgot. How is she? Poor woman; how is she?


Mary.

  Worse, Edward, worse. [Trying to hide her tears.


Edward.

  And I in part the cause. Oh, horrid vice! Bill, I remember my father's death-bed; it was a Christian's;


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faith in his heart; hope in his calm, blue eye; a smile upon his lip; he had never seen his Edward drunk. Oh, had he seen it—had he seen it!


Julia.

  [Crossing to her father from R. to C.] Father, dear father? [Striving to kiss him.


Edward.

  Leave me, child, leave me. I am hot enough already. [She weeps, he kisses her.] Bless you, Julia, dear, bless you. Bill, do you remember the young elm tree by the arbor in the garden?


William.

  Yes, sir.


Edward.

  Well, I slipped and fell against it, as I passed the gate. My father planted it on the very day I saw the light. It has grown with my growth; I seized the axe and felled it to the earth. Why should it flourish when I am lost forever? [Hysterically] Why should it lift its head to smiling heaven while I am prostrate? Ha, ha, ha! [A groan is heard, R. D.Exit Mary.—A pause;—a shriek.

Enter MARY.


Mary.

  Edward, my mother—


Edward.

  Mary!—


Mary.

  She is dead!


Edward.

  Horror! And I the cause? Death in the house, and I without doubt the means. I cannot bear this; let me fly—


Mary.

  [Springing forward and clasping his neck.] Edward, dear Edward, do not leave me. I will work, I will slave, anything; we can live, but do not abandon me in misery; do not desert me, Edward! love! husband!


Edward.

  Call me not husband—curse me as your destroyer; loose your arms—leave me.


Mary.

  No, no! do not let him go. William, hold him.


William.

  [Holding him.] Edward, dear brother!


Julia.

  [Clinging to him.] Father! father!


Mary.

  You will be abused. No one near to aid you. Imprisoned, or something worse, Edward.


Edward.

  Loose me; leave me; why fasten me down on fire? Madness is my strength; my brain is liquid flame! [Breaks from her.—William is obliged to catch her.] Ha! I am free. Farewell, forever. [Rushes off, C.D.


Mary.

  Husband! Oh, Heaven! [Faints.


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William.

  [Bursting into tears.] Edward! brother!


Julia.

  Father, father! [Runs to the door and falls on the threshold.

END OF ACT II.