All's Well That Ends Well By William Shakespeare Act III: Scenes 1-2

COUNTESS.
Nothing in France until he have no wife!
There's nothing here that is too good for him
But only she; and she deserves a lord
That twenty such rude boys might tend upon,
And call her hourly mistress. Who was with him?

SECOND GENTLEMAN.
A servant only, and a gentleman
Which I have sometime known.

COUNTESS.
Parolles, was it not?

SECOND GENTLEMAN.
Ay, my good lady, he.

COUNTESS.
A very tainted fellow, and full of wickedness.
My son corrupts a well-derived nature
With his inducement.

SECOND GENTLEMAN.
Indeed, good lady,
The fellow has a deal of that too much
Which holds him much to have.

COUNTESS.
You are welcome, gentlemen.
I will entreat you, when you see my son,
To tell him that his sword can never win
The honour that he loses: more I'll entreat you
Written to bear along.

FIRST GENTLEMAN.
We serve you, madam,
In that and all your worthiest affairs.

COUNTESS.
Not so, but as we change our courtesies.
Will you draw near?

[Exeunt COUNTESS and Gentlemen.]

HELENA.
'Till I have no wife, I have nothing in France.'
Nothing in France until he has no wife!
Thou shalt have none, Rousillon, none in France;
Then hast thou all again. Poor lord! is't I
That chase thee from thy country, and expose
Those tender limbs of thine to the event
Of the none-sparing war? and is it I
That drive thee from the sportive court, where thou
Wast shot at with fair eyes, to be the mark
Of smoky muskets? O you leaden messengers,
That ride upon the violent speed of fire,
Fly with false aim: move the still-peering air,
That sings with piercing; do not touch my lord!
Whoever shoots at him, I set him there;
Whoever charges on his forward breast,
I am the caitiff that do hold him to it;
And though I kill him not, I am the cause
His death was so effected: better 'twere
I met the ravin lion when he roar'd
With sharp constraint of hunger; better 'twere
That all the miseries which nature owes
Were mine at once. No; come thou home, Rousillon,
Whence honour but of danger wins a scar,
As oft it loses all. I will be gone:
My being here it is that holds thee hence:
Shall I stay here to do't? no, no, although
The air of paradise did fan the house,
And angels offic'd all: I will be gone,
That pitiful rumour may report my flight
To consolate thine ear. Come, night; end, day!
For with the dark, poor thief, I'll steal away.

[Exit.]

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