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" A room in Cymbeline's palace. Enter Cymbeline, Queen, Cloten, Lucius, and
Thanks, royal sir.
Our subjects, sir,
So, sir, I desire of you
Your hand, my lord.
Sir, the event Is yet to name the winner; Fare you well. Cym. Leave not the worthy Lucius, good my
lords, Till he have cross'd the Severn.--Happiness !
(Exeunt Lucius, and Lords. Queen. He goes hence frowning: but it honours
us, That we have given him cause. Clo.
'Tis all the better; Your valiant Britons have their wishes in it.
Cym. Lucius hath wrote already to the emperor How it goes here. It fits us therefore, ripely, Our chariots and our horsemen be in readiness : The powers that he already hath in Gallia Will soon be drawn to head, from whence he moves His war for Britain. Queen.
'Tis not sleepy business; But must be look'd to speedily, and strongly.
Cym. Our expectation that it would be thus,
(Erit an Attendant. Queen.
Royal sir, Since the exile of Posthumus, most retir'd Hath her life been; the cure whereof, my lord, 'Tis time must do. 'Beseech your majesty, Forbear sharp speeches to her: she's a lady So tender of rebukes, that words are strokes, And strokes death to her.
Re-enter an Attendant.
Where is she, sir? How
Please you, sir, Her chambers are all lock'd ; and there's no answer That will be given to the loud'st of noise we make.
Queen. My lord, when last I went to visit her, She pray'd me to excuse her keeping close; Whereto constrain'd by her infirmity, She should that duty leave unpaid to you, Which daily she was bound to proffer: this She wish'd me to make known; but our great court Made me to blame in memory. "Cym.
Her doors lock'd ? Not seen of late ? Grant, heavens, that, which I fear, Prove false !
(Erit. Queen. Son, I say, follow the king.
Clo, That man of hers, Pisanio, her old servant, I have not seen these two days. Queen.
Go, look after.
[Erit Cloten. Pisanio, thou that stand'st so for Posthumus! He hath a drug of mine: I pray, his absence Proceed by swallowing that ; for he believes It is a thing most precious. But for her, Where is she gone? Haply, despair hath seiz'd her; Or, wing'd with fervour of her love, she's flown To her desir'd Posthumus : Gone she is, To death, or to dishonour; and my end Can make good use of either: She being down, I have the placing of the British crown.
'Tis certain, she is fled:
All the better: May
[Erit Queen. clo. I love, and hate her: for she's fair and royal: And that she hath all courtly parts more exquisite Than lady, ladies, woman*; from every one The best she hath, and she, of all compounded, Outsells them all: I love her therefore; But, Disdaining me, and throwing favours on The low Posthumus, slanders so her judgement, That what's else rare, is chok'd; and, in that point, I will conclude to hate her, nay, indeed, To be reveng'd upon her. For, when fools
• Than any lady, than all ladies, than all womankind.
Shall-Who is here? What! are you packing, sirrah?
9. O, good my lord !
Alas, my lord,
Where is she, sir? Come nearer;
Pis. O, my all-worthy lord!
All-worthy villain !
Then, sir, This paper is the history of my knowledge, Touching her fight.
(Presenting a letter. Clo.
Let's see't :-I will pursue her • Even to Augustus' throne. Pis.
Or this, or perish. She's far enough; and what he learns by this, May prove his travel, not her danger. ; [Aside. clo.
Humph ! Pis. I'll write to my lord she's dead. O Imogen, Safe may'st thou wander, safe return-again!
[ Aside. Clo. Sirrah, is thịs letter true? Pis. src L
Sir, as I think.
Clo. It is Posthumus' hand; I know't.-Sirrah, if thou would'st not be a villain, but do me true service; undergo those employments, wherein I should have cause to use thee, with a serious industry,—that is, what villainy soe'er I bid thee do, to perform it, di. rectly and truly, I would think thee an honest man : thou shouldest neither want my means forthy relief, nor my voice for thy preferment.
Pis. Well, my good lord.
Clo. Wilt thou serve me? For since patiently and constantly thou hast stuck to the bare fortune of that beggar Posthumus, thou canst not in the course of gratitude but be a diligent follower of mine. Wilt thou serve me?
Pis. Sir, I will.
Clo. Give me thy hand, here's my purse. Hast any of thy late master's garments in thy possession?
Pis. I have, my lord, at my lodging, the same suit he wore when he took leave of my lady and mistress.
clo. The first service thou dost me, fetch that suit bither: let it be thy first service ; go. Pis. I shall, my lord.
(Exit. Clo. Meet thee at Milford-Haven: I forgot to ask him one thing; I'll remember't anon :- Even there, thou villain Posthumus, will I kill thee.--I would these garments were come. She said upon a time (the bitterness of it I now belch from my heart), that she held the very garment of Posthumus in more respect than my noble and natural person, together with the adornment of my qualities. With that suit upon my back, will I ravish her: First kill hin, and in her eyes; there shall she see my valour, which will then be a torment to her contempt. He on the ground, my speech of insultment ended on his dead body, and when my lust hath dined (which, as I say, to vex her, I will execute in the clothes that she so praised), to the court I'll knock her back, foot her home again. She hath despised me rejoicingly, and I'll be merry in my revenge.