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Rain blows upon me, drag me to and fro
How could this deed be covered?
I had all good men's love. But my disgrace,
They summoned me, as friend would summon friend,
We met; and 'twas resolved, to stifle rumor,
To put me on my trial. No accuser,
No evidence appeared, to urge it on;
'Twas meant to clear my fame. How clear it, then? How cover it? you say.. Why, by a lie,
Guilt's offspring and its guard! I taught this breast,
I know thy sight aches at me.
It may be wrong: indeed, I pity you.
I ask no consolation! Idle boy!
Thinkst thou that this compulsive confidence
Drove me to murder,-lying; —'t would again!
SIR EDWARD MORTIMER AND WILFORD. 207
Are bartered for a name. - I will maintain it!
Dead in the church-yard! Boy, I would not kill thee:
Save one-your death. You shall not be my victim.
Wil. My death!-What! take my life my life, to prop This empty honor!
Sir E. Empty!-Groveling fool! (Crosses to L.)
Sir E. How!
Wil. You dare not.
Sir E. Dare not!
Wil. Some hours ago you durst not. Passion moved you; Reflection interposed, and held your arm.
But, should reflection prompt you to attempt it,
And ask you which in heaven would show the best, -
Sir E. Tis plain I dare not take your life. -To spare it, I have endangered mine. But dread my power:
You know not its extent.
Be warned in time;
Trifle not with my feelings. Listen, sir:
Compared to thee, shall seem more enviable
Wil. O, misery!
Discard me, sir; I must be hateful to you.
Sir E. Never! Fool!
To buy this secret, you have sold yourself,
Enter KING HENRY, L., followed by HOTSPUR.
K. Henry. Why, yet you do deny your prisoners,
He never did fall off, my sovereign liege,
Then let him not be slandered with revolt.
K. Hen. Thou dost belie him, Percy, thou dost belie him. Art thou not ashamed? But, sirrah, henceforth
Let me not hear you speak of Mortimer.
Send me your prisoners with the speediest means,
Or you shall hear in such a kind from me
As will displease you.
(Exit KING HENRY, R.)
Hot. (R.) And if the devil come and roar for them,
I will not send them. I will after straight,
And tell him so; for I will ease my heart,
Although it be with hazard of my head.
Enter WORCESTER, L.
Worcester. What! drunk with choler?
Zounds, I will speak of him; and let my soul
And shed my dear blood drop by drop in the dust,
But I will lift the down-trod Mortimer
As high in the air as this unthankful king—
As this ingrate and cankered Bolingbroke! (Crosses L.)
Hot. He will, forsooth, have all my prisoners;
Wor. (L.) Peace, cousin, say no more:
Hot. If he fall in, good-night!-or sink or swim,Send Danger from the east unto the west,
So Honor cross it from the north to south,
And let them grapple:-O! the blood more stirs
Wor. (Aside.) Imagination of some great ex-ploit
Hot. Good heaven! methinks it were an easy leap,
Where fathom-line could never touch the ground,
But out upon this half-faced fellowship!
Wor. (Aside.) He apprehends a world of figures here,
But not the form of what he should attend.
(Aloud.) Good cousin, give me audience for a while.
Hot. I cry you mercy.
Wor. Those same noble Scots,
That are your prisoners
Hot. I'll keep them all; (Crosses and recrosses.)
He shall not have a Scot of them - not one :
No, if a Scot would save his soul, he shall not:
I'll keep them, by this hand.
Wor. You start away,
And lend no ear unto my purposes.—
Hot. Nay, I will; that's flat: -
And in his ear I'll holla - Mortimer! (Crosses and recrosses.)
Wor. Hear you, cousin, a word.
Hot. All studies here I solemnly defy,
Save how to gall and pinch this Bolingbroke.
And that same sword-and-buckler Prince of Wales, -
And would be glad he met with some mischance,
Wor. Farewell, kinsman! I will talk to you,
When you are better tempered to attend.
Hot. Why, look you, I am whipped and scourged with rods, Nettled, and stung with pismires, when I hear
Of this vile politician, Bolingbroke!
What do you call the place?
In Richard's time-
Hot. You say true.
Why, what a candy deal of courtesy
This fawning greyhound then did proffer me!
Look, "when his infant fortune came to age,"
And, "gentle Harry Percy," and, "kind cousin!"
O, out upon such cozeners!
Heaven forgive me!
Good uncle, tell your tale, for I have done.
Wor. Nay, if you have not, to 't again;
I'll stay your leisure.
Hot. I have done, in sooth.
Wor. Then once more to your Scottish prisoners.
When time is ripe, which will be suddenly,
I'll steal to Glendower and Lord Mortimer,