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- TWO MEN OF SANDY BAR - 23/23 -


Jovita (rushing towards him). No! no! You shall take ME! I have wronged you, Jack, cruelly; I have doubted you; but you shall not go alone. I care not for this contract! You are more to me, by your own right, Jack, than by any kinship with such as these!

Oakhurst (raising her gently). I thank you, darling. But it is too late now. To be more worthy of you, to win YOU, I waived the title I had to you in my own manhood, to borrow another's more legal claim. I who would not win you as a gambler, cannot make you now the wife of a convicted impostor. No! Hear me, darling! do not make my disgrace greater than it is. In the years to come, Jovita, think of me as one who loved you well enough to go through shame to win you, but too well to ask you to share with him that shame. Farewell, darling, farewell! (Releases himself from JOVITA'S arms, who falls beside him.)

Concho (rubbing his hands, and standing before him). Oho! Mr. John Oakhurst--eh--was it for this, eh--you leaped the garden wall, eh? was it for this you struck me down, eh? You are not wise, eh? You should have run away with the Dona when you could--ah, ah, impostor!

Sandy (leaping to his feet). Jack, you shall not go! I will go with you!

Oakhurst. No! Your place is there. (Pointing to old MORTON, whose head has sunk drunkenly on his breast.) Heed not this man; his tongue carries only the borrowed lash of his master.

Concho. Eh! you are bold now--bold; but I said I would have revenge--ah, revenge!

Sandy (rushing toward him). Coward!

Don Jose. Hold your hand, sir! Hold! I allow no one to correct my menials but myself. Concho, order my carriage!

Concho. It is ready, sir.

Don Jose. Then lead the way to it, for my daughter and her husband, John Oakhurst.--Good-night, Mr. Morton, I can sympathize with you; for we have both found a son. I am willing to exchange my dismissed servant for your dismissed PARTNER.

Starbottle (advancing). Ged, sir, I respect you! Ged, sir, permit me, sir, to grasp that honorable hand!

Old Morton (excitedly). He is right, my partner. What have I done! The house of Morton & Son dissolved. The man known as my partner--a fugitive! No, Alexander!

Starbottle. One moment--a single moment! As a lawyer, permit me to say, sir, that the whole complication may be settled, sir, by the--er--addition of--er--single letter! The house of Morton & Son shall hereafter read Morton & Sons. The papers for the legal adoption of Mr. Oakhurst are--er--in my pocket.

Old Morton (more soberly). Have it your own way, sir! Morton & Sons be it. Hark ye, Don Jose! We are equal at last. But--hark ye, Aleck! How about the boy, eh?--my grandson, eh? Is this one of the sons by adoption?

Sandy (embarrassedly). It is my own, sir.

Capper (advancing). He can with safety claim it; for the mother is on her way to Australia with her husband.

Old Morton. And the schoolma'am, eh?

Miss Mary. She will claim the usual year of probation for your prodigal, and then--

Sandy. God bless ye, Miss Mary!

Old Morton. I am in a dream! But the world--my friends--my patrons--how can I explain?

Starbottle. I will--er--explain. (Advancing slowly to front--to audience.) One moment--er--a single moment! If anything that has-- er--transpired this evening--might seem to you, ladies and gentlemen--er--morally or--er--legally--or honorably to require-- er--apology--or--er--explanation--permit me to say--that I--Col. Culpepper Starbottle, hold myself responsible--er--personally responsible.

Capper. Concho.

Old Morton. Sandy. Miss Mary. Don Jose. Jovita. Oakhurst.

Col. Starbottle.

Curtain.


TWO MEN OF SANDY BAR - 23/23

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