The Double - Dealer
A gallery in the Lord Touchwood's home, with chambers adjoining.
Enter CARELESS, crossing the stage, with his hat, gloves, and sword in his hands; as
just risen from table: MELLEFONT following him.
MEL. Ned, Ned, whither so fast? What, turned flincher! Why, you wo' not leave us?
CARE. Where are the women? I'm weary of guzzling, and begin to think them the better
MEL. Then thy reason staggers, and thou'rt almost drunk.
CARE. No, faith, but your fools grow noisy; and if a man must endure the noise of words
without sense, I think the women have more musical voices, and become nonsense better.
MEL. Why, they are at the end of the gallery; retired to their tea and scandal, according
to their ancient custom, after dinner. But I made a pretence to follow you, because I had
something to say to you in private, and I am not like to have many opportunities this
CARE. And here's this coxcomb most critically come to interrupt you.
[To them] BRISK.
BRISK. Boys, boys, lads, where are you? What, do you give ground? Mortgage for a
bottle, ha? Careless, this is your trick; you're always spoiling company by leaving it.
CARE. And thou art always spoiling company by coming in o't.
BRISK. Pooh, ha, ha, ha, I know you envy me. Spite, proud spite, by the gods! and
burning envy. I'll be judged by Mellefont here, who gives and takes raillery better than
you or I. Pshaw, man, when I say you spoil company by leaving it, I mean you leave
nobody for the company to laugh at. I think there I was with you. Ha, Mellefont?
MEL. O' my word, Brisk, that was a home thrust; you have silenced him.