An Enemy of the People
the rest of them. And if he does fall in with it, he will fall out with the whole crowd
of large shareholders in the Baths, who up to now have been his most valuable
Billing. Yes, because they will certainly have to fork out a pretty penny--
Hovstad. Yes, you may be sure they will. And in this way the ring will be broken
up, you see, and then in every issue of the paper we will enlighten the public on
the Mayor's incapability on one point and another, and make it clear that all the
positions of trust in the town, the whole control of municipal affairs, ought to be
put in the hands of the Liberals.
Billing. That is perfectly true! I see it coming--I see it coming; we are on the
threshold of a revolution!
(A knock is heard at the door.)
Hovstad. Hush! (Calls out.) Come in! (DR. STOCKMANN comes in by the street
door. HOVSTAD goes to meet him.) Ah, it is you, Doctor! Well?
Dr. Stockmann. You may set to work and print it, Mr. Hovstad!
Hovstad. Has it come to that, then?
Dr. Stockmann. Yes, print away. Undoubtedly it has come to that. Now they
must take what they get. There is going to be a fight in the town, Mr. Billing!
Billing. War to the knife, I hope! We will get our knives to their throats, Doctor!
Dr. Stockmann. This article is only a beginning. I have already got four or five
more sketched out in my head. Where is Aslaksen?
Billing (calls into the printing-room). Aslaksen, just come here for a minute!
Hovstad. Four or five more articles, did you say? On the same subject?
Dr. Stockmann. No--far from it, my dear fellow. No, they are about quite another
matter. But they all spring from the question of the water supply and the
drainage. One thing leads to another, you know. It is like beginning to pull down
an old house, exactly.
Billing. Upon my soul, it's true; you find you are not done till you have pulled all
the old rubbish down.