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You swore as much too, Mr. Sterling; but your laws in the city will excuse you, I suppose ; for you never strike a balance, without-errors excepted. - Sterl. I am a father, my lord; but for the sake of all other fathers, I think I ought not to forgive her, for fear of encouraging other silly girls, like herself, to throw themselves away without the consent of their parents. .Love. I hope there will be no danger of that, sir. Young ladies, with minds like my Fanny's, would startle at the very shadow of vice; and when they know to what uneasiness only an indiscretion has exposed her, her example, instead of encouraging, will rather serve to deter them.
Mrs. Heidel. Indiscretion, quotha ! a mighty pretty delicat word to express obedience!
Lord O. For my part, I indulge my own passions too much to tyrannize, over those of other people. Poor souls! I pity them. And you must forgive them, too. Come, come, melt a little of your flint, Mr. Sterling !
Sterl. Why, why, as to that, my lord—to be sure, he is a relation of your's, my lord- What say you, sister Heidelberg ? Mrs. Heidel. The girl's ruin'd, and I forgive her.
Sterl, Well-so do I, then. Nay, no thanks~ [To · LOVEWELL and Fanny, who seem preparing to speak.]there's an end of the matter.
Lord O. But, Lovewell, what makes you dunıb all this while ?
Love. Your kindness, my lord- I can scarce believe my own senses--they are all in a tumult of fear, joy, love, expectation, and gratitude; I ever was, and am now more bound in duty to your lordship. For you, Mr. Sterling, if every moment of my life, spent gratefully in your service, will in some measure compensate the want of fortune, you perhaps will not repent your goodness to me. And you, 'ladies, I flatter myself, will not for the future suspect me of artifice and
intrigue-I shall be happy to oblige and serve you. As for you, Sir John
Sir John. No apologies to me, Lovewell; I do not deserve any. All I have to offer in excuse for what has happened, is my total ignorance of your situation. Had you dealt a little more openly with me, you would have saved me, yourself, and that lady, (who, I hope, will pardon my behaviour) a great deal of uneasiness. Give me leave, however, to assure you, that light and capricious as I may have appeared, now my infatuation is over, I have sensibility enough to be ashamed of the part I have acted, and honour enough to rejoice at your happiness.
Love. And now, my dearest Fanny, though we are seemingly the happiest of beings, yet all our joys will be damped, if his lordship’s generosity, and Mr. Sterling's forgiveness, should not be succeeded by the indulgence, approbation, and consent of these our best benefactors.
To the audience.
N RESTLESS. BEVERLEY. SIR WILLIAM BELLMONT. BELLMONT. BLANDFORD. ROBERT. BRUSH.
LADY RESTLESS. BELINDA. CLARISSA. TATTLE. TIPPETT. MARMALET.
ALL IN THE WRONG.
Scene 1.—The Park. Enter Sir John RESTLESS and ROBERT, from a house in
the side scene. Sir John. Sir John Restless! Sir John Restless! thon hast played the fool with a vengeance. What devil whispered thee to marry such a woman --Robert, you have been a faithful servant, and I value you. Did your lady go out at this door here into the Park, or did she go out at the street door?
Rob. This door, sir.
Sir John. Robert, I will never live in a house again that has two doors to it.
Sir John. I will give warning to my landlord in. stantly. The eyes of Argus are not sufficient to watch the motions of a wife, where there is a street door, and a back door, to favour her escapes.
Rob. Upon my word, sir, I wish you will pardon my boldness, sir,- I wish you would shake off this uneasiness that preys upon your spirits. It grieves me to the heart,-it does, indeed, sir, to see you in this way : banish your suspicions: you have conceived some strange aversion, I am afraid, to my lady, sir.
Sir John. No, Robert: no aversion ; in spite of me, I doat upon her still.