Cyrano de Bergerac By Edmond Rostand Act I — Scene 4

Act I. Scene 4

The same. Cyrano, then Bellerose, Jodelet.

MONTFLEURY (to the marquises): Come to my help, my lords!

A MARQUIS (carelessly): Go on! Go on!

CYRANO: Fat man, take warning! If you go on, I Shall feel myself constrained to cuff your face!

THE MARQUIS: Have done!

CYRANO: And if these lords hold not their tongue Shall feel constrained to make them taste my cane!

ALL THE MARQUISES (rising): Enough! . . . Montfleury . . .

CYRANO: If he goes not quick I will cut off his ears and slit him up!

A VOICE: But . . .

CYRANO: Out he goes!

ANOTHER VOICE: Yet . . .

CYRANO: Is he not gone yet? (He makes the gesture of turning up his cuffs): Good! I shall mount the stage now, buffet-wise, To carve this fine Italian sausage — thus!

MONTFLEURY (trying to be dignified): You outrage Thalia in insulting me!

CYRANO (very politely): If that Muse, Sir, who knows you not at all, Could claim acquaintance with you — oh, believe (Seeing how urn-like, fat, and slow you are) That she would make you taste her buskin's sole!

THE PIT: Montfleury! Montfleury! Come — Baro's play!

CYRANO (to those who are calling out): I pray you have a care! If you go on My scabbard soon will render up its blade!

(The circle round him widens.)

THE CROWD (drawing back): Take care!

CYRANO (to Montfleury): Leave the stage!

THE CROWD (coming near and grumbling): Oh! —

CYRANO: Did some one speak?

(They draw back again.)

A VOICE (singing at the back): Monsieur de Cyrano Displays his tyrannies: A fig for tyrants! What, ho! Come! Play us 'La Clorise!'

ALL THE PIT (singing): 'La Clorise!' 'La Clorise!' . . .

CYRANO: Let me but hear once more that foolish rhyme, I slaughter every man of you.

A BURGHER: Oh! Samson?

CYRANO: Yes Samson! Will you lend your jawbone, Sir?

A LADY (in the boxes): Outrageous!

A LORD: Scandalous!

A BURGHER: 'Tis most annoying!

A PAGE: Fair good sport!

THE PIT: Kss! — Montfleury . . . Cyrano!

CYRANO: Silence!

THE PIT (wildly excited): Ho-o-o-o-h! Quack! Cock-a-doodle-doo!

CYRANO: I order —

A PAGE: Miow!

CYRANO: I order silence, all! And challenge the whole pit collectively! — I write your names! — Approach, young heroes, here! Each in his turn! I cry the numbers out! — Now which of you will come to ope the lists? You, Sir? No! You? No! The first duellist Shall be dispatched by me with honors due! Let all who long for death hold up their hands! (A silence): Modest? You fear to see my naked blade? Not one name? — Not one hand? — Good, I proceed! (Turning toward the stage, where Montfleury waits in an agony): The theater's too full, congested, — I Would clear it out . . . If not . . . (Puts his hand on his sword): The knife must act!

MONTFLEURY: I . . .

CYRANO (leaves his chair, and settles himself in the middle of the circle which has formed): I will clap my hands thrice, thus — full moon! At the third clap, eclipse yourself!

THE PIT (amused): Ah!

CYRANO (clapping his hands): One!

MONTFLEURY: I . . .

A VOICE (in the boxes): Stay!

THE PIT: He stays . . . he goes . . . he stays . . .

MONTFLEURY: I think . . . Gentlemen, . . .

CYRANO: Two!

MONTFLEURY: I think 'twere wisest . . .

CYRANO: Three!

(Montfleury disappears as through a trap. Tempest of laughs, whistling cries, etc.)

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