A monologue from the play by Clyde Fitch

NOTE: This play was published in 1908 by John Lane Company, New York. It is now a public domain work and may be performed without royalties.
BEAU: I heartily congratulate you, my dear Miss Vincent, on having escaped a scene. Nothing but the regard I bear you could have persuaded me to so nearly incur a possible fracas. Lord Manly was born with a silver spoon in his mouth, and he has thought it necessary to keep that spoon full ever since. But now that we have found one another, may I not be permitted to continue the conversation where it was broken off? I desire to speak with you seriously. I wish to make a confession. I want to tell you what perhaps you know--when I first sought your hand, I did not bring my heart. I admired you, 'tis true, but I did not love you--not then--not madly! I was--I am so deeply in debt, so hemmed in by my creditors, so hard pressed on every side, it was necessary for me to do something to find the wherewithal to satisfy their just demands, or sink under my misfortunes and give up forever the life of the world which had become my very breath and being. The one means at my disposal to free myself from my difficulties was a marriage. I knew your fortune and I sought you out. The admiration I entertained for you the first few days deepened into esteem, and finally expanded into love--mad love! That is why I have rehearsed this to you. At first it was your fortune which allured me--but now it is yourself! Yet, were you penniless, I would not wed you. Because I would not drag you down to share this miserable, uncertain lot of mine. No! I would seek you once to tell you of my love, and then step aside out of your path, and never cross it again.

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