(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "The magistrate: a farce in three acts"

The ^Magistrate 



IC-NRLF 



EMfi 171 




Arthur W Pin&r 



TH6 



THE PLAYS OF ARTHUR W. PINERO 

Paper cover, is 6d ; cloth as 6d each 

THE TIMES 

THE PROFLIGATE 

THE CABINET MINISTER 

THE HOBBY-HORSE 

LADY BOUNTIFUL 

THE MAGISTRATE 

DANDY DICK 

SWEET LA VENDER 

THE SCHOOLMISTRESS 

THE WEAKER SEX 

THE AMAZONS 
"THE SECOND MRS. TANQUERA Y 

THE NOTORIOUS MRS. EBBSMITH 

THE BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT 

THE PRINCESS AND THE BUTTERFLY 

TRELA WNY OF THE " WELLS' 
\THE GAY LORD QUEX 

IRIS 

LETTY 

A WIFE WITHOUT A SMILE 

HIS HOUSE IN ORDER 

THE THUNDERBOLT 

MID-CHANNEL 

PRESERVING MR. PANMURE 

THE "MIND THE PAINT" GIRL 

* This Play can be had in library form, 410, cloth, with 
a portrait, 55. 

t A Limited Edition of this play on hand-made 
paper, with a new portrait, xos net. 

THE PINERO BIRTHDAY BOOK 

SELECTED AND ARKANGED BY MYRA HAMILTON 

With a Portrait, cloth extra, price 23 6d. 

LONDON: WILLIAM HEINEMANN 



THE 




Jl 

In Three *Acn 



BY ARTHUR IV. PINERO 



LONDON'. WILLIAM HEINEMANN 



First Impression 1892; 
New Impressions 1894, 
1895, l8 97, l8 99. J 9 OI > 
1903, 1905, 1907, 1909, 
1911, 1914 



ENGLTPH I 



Copyright 

All rights reserved 

Entered at Stationers' Hall 

Enteted at the Library of Congress 

Washington, U.S.A. 



INTRODUCTORY NOTE. 

* THE MAGISTRATE " is, after " Sweet Lavender," perhaps 
the most popular of Mr. Pinero's plays, and it is particu- 
larly interesting as being the first of his works in which 
his own individuality found absolutely independent ex- 
pression, and emphatically and triumphantly asserted 
itself. In fact, this farce marks an epoch in the drama- 
tist's career, and shows him creating a really new and 
original order of English comic play, the further develop- 
ment of which may be traced in the successive plays 
which, together with " The Magistrate," formed the famous 
Court series of farces, namely, " The Schoolmistress," 

'Dandy Dick," and "The Cabinet Minister." 

Because Mr. Pinero had previously written "The 
Rocket," and " In Chancery," for Mr. Edward Terry, who 
has performed them times out of number in London and 

the provinces with considerable success, it has been 



434565 



vi INTRODUCTORY NOTE. 

assumed that "The "Magistrate" was also written for Mr. 
Terry. But this was not the case. As a matter of fact Mr. 
Pinero wrote the play quite independently, and on its 
completion he was to have read it to Mr. Charles Wynd- 
ham, but the necessities of the Court Theatre intervened. 
The management of the late Mr. John Clayton and 
Arthur Cecil was decidedly in low water in 1884 and the 
earlier part of 1885 ; play after play had been produced 
without success, when at length application was made to 
Mr. Pinero for a new piece. They had been performing 
serious plays, and he read them " The Weaker Sex," which 
he had written some little time before ; but Mr. Clayton 
felt uncertain about this play, which, by the way, Mr. and 
Mrs. Kendal have since produced, and then Mr. Pinero, 
mentioning the new comic play he had just finished, 
suggested that perhaps an entirely new order of entertain- 
ment might serve to change the fortunes of the house. 
" The Magistrate " was immediately accepted and pro- 
duced, and his conjecture proved correct, for the luck of 
the theatre promptly turned. 

" The Magistrate " was produced at the Court Theatre 
on Saturday, March 21, 1885, with a cast, particulars of 
which will be found in the following copy of the first night 
programme : 



INTRODUCTORY NOTE. vii 

ROYAL COURT THEATRE, 

SLOANE SQUARE, S.W. 

Lessees and Managers : 
MR. JOHN CLAYTON and MR. ARTHUR CECIL 

THIS EVENING, SATURDAY, MARCH ai, 

At a Quarter to Nine o'clock, 
WILL BE PRODUCED FOR THE FIRST TIME, 

THE MAGISTRATE, 

AN ORIGINAL FARCE, IN THREE ACTS, 
BY 

A. W. PINERO. 



MR. POSKET } Magistrates of the Mulberry f Mr. ARTHUR CECIL. 

MR. BULLAMY) Street Police Court (Mr. FKED CAPE. 

COLONEL LUKYN (from Bengal retired) . Mr. JOHN CLAYTON. 

CAPTAIN HORACE VALE (Shropshire Fusi- 
liers) Mr. F. KERR. 

Cis FARRINGDON (Mrs. Posket's son, by 

her first marriage) . . . . Mr. H. EVERSFIELD. 

ACHILLE BLOND (Proprietor of the Hotel 

des Princes) Mr. CHEVALIER. 

ISIDORE (a Waiter) Mr. DELANE. 

MR. WORMINGTON (Chief Clerk at Mul- 
berry Street) Mr. GILBERT TRENT. 

INSPECTOR MESSITER\ (Mr. ALBERT SIMS. 

SERJEANT LUGG I Metropolitan Police j Mr. LUGG. 

CONSTABLE HARRIS J I Mr. BURNLEY. 

WYKE (Servant at Mr. Posket's) . . . Mr. FAYRE. 



AGATHA POSKET (late Farringdon, net 

Verrinder) Mrs. JOHN WOOD 

CHARLOTTE (her Sister) .... Miss MARION TERKV 
BE ATI E TOMLINSON (a Young Lady reduced 

to teaching music) .... Miss NORREYS. 

POPHAM Miss LA COSTE. 



riii INTRODUCTORY NOTE. 

ACT I. 

THE FAMILY SKELETON. 
At Air. Packet's, Bloomsbury. 



ACT II. 
IT LEAVES ITS CUPBOARD. 

Room in the Hotel des Princes, Meek Street. 



ACT III. 
IT CRUMBLES. 

SCENE i. The Magistrates Room, Mulberry Street. 
SCENE z.At the Poskets again. 



PRECEDED BY A COMEDIETTA BY 
A. W. DUBOURG, 

ENTITLED 

TWENTY MINUTES UNDER AN UMBRELLA. 



COUSIN KATE .... Miss NORKEYS. 

COUSIN FRANK . . . Mr. H. REEVES SMITH. 



Musical Director , MR. CARL ARMBRUSTER. 
Secretary . -MR. GEORGE COLEMAN. 

The success of " The Magistrate" was immediate, and 
the Court Theatre was crowded night after night for mo:e 



INTRODUCTORY NOTE. ii 

than a year, the play being presented over 300 times. So 
prosperous was the run that there was no cessation during 
the Summer holiday season, and when Mr. Arthur Cecil 
went abroad for his vacation, his place as Posket was 
taken by Mr. Beerbohm Tree, while Miss Lottie Venne 
and Mrs. Tree in like manner relieved Mrs. John Wood 
and Miss Marion Terry. 

This success, however, was not confined to London, for 
three companies were soon carrying the play triumphantly 
over the English provinces, while in September 1885 Mr. 
Pinero went to New York to produce his work at Daly's 
Theatre. Mr. Daly had suggested that Miss Ada Rehan 
should play the boy, Cis Farringdon, but to this the author 
objected, and Miss Rehan played Mrs. Posket, while Mr. 
Posket was represented by Mr. James Lewis, and Colonel 
Lukyn by Mr. John Drew. "The Magistrate" enjoyed 
an exceptionally long run in New York, as well as in 
Boston, and in the latter city it is now performed every 
year, being included in the regular season of classic 
English comedies at the Boston Museum. "The Magis- 
trate " has also been played throughout the United States, 
the late John T. Raymond having been closely associated 
with the play for a considerable time. 

"The Magistrate" has travelled more widely than most 



n INTRODUCTORY NOTE. 

modern English plays, and, besides being a stock piece in 
Australia, India, and South Africa, it has been translated 
into more than one foreign tongue. Under the title " Der 
Blaue Grotte" ("The Blue Grotto") it is constantly 
played all over Germany and Austria, while in the 
Slavonic language it is a favourite play at the National 
Theatre, Prague. At one time a proposal was made, 
through the late Mr. John Clayton, that " The Magis- 
trate " should be adapted to the French stage, but the 
suggestions of the proposed Parisian adapter were, though 
eminently chsracteristic, of such a nature that Mr. Pinero 
did not feel justified in acceding to them. 

While Mrs. John Wood and Mr. Arthur Chudleigh 
were still joint managers of the Court, there was some 
intention of reviving " The Magistrate " at that theatre, 
but as matters afterwards developed, Mr. Pinero arranged 
that the revival should take place under the auspices of 
Mr. Edward Terry, who accordingly appeared as Mr, 
Posket at his own theatre on Wednesday, April 13, 1892 

MALCOLM C. SALAMAN. 



THS TSI^ONS OF THS TLAK 

MR. POSKET (Magistrate of Mulberry Street 

Police Court) 
AGATHA POSKET 
CIS FARRINGUON (her Son* 
CHARLOTTE VERRINDER (her Sister) 
COLONEL LUKYM 
CAPTAIN HORACE VALK 
BEATIE TOMLINSON 

MR. BULLAMY (Magistrate of Mulberry Street 

Police Court) 
ACHILLE BLOND 
ISIDORE 

MR. WORMINGTON 
INSPECTOR MESSITER^ 
SERGEANT LUGO V( Metropolitan Police) 
CONSTABLE HARRIS j 
WYKE 

PorHAJH 



THE FIRST ACT 
THE FAMILY SKELETON 

THE SECOND ACT 
IT LEAVES ITS CUPBOARD 

THE THIRD ACT 
!T CRUMBLES 






THE MAGISTRATE 

THE FIRST ACT 

The scene represents a well-furnished drawing-room in 
the house of MR. POSKET in loomsbury. 

BEATIE TOMLINSON, a pretty, simply dressed little girl 
of about sixteen, is playing the piano, as Cis 
FAIIRINGDON, a manly youth wearing an Eton 

f\ jacket, enters the room. 

Cis. 
Bcatie I 

BEATIE. 
Cis dear ! Dinner isn't over, surely ? 

Cis. 

Not quite. I had one of my convenient headaches 
and cleared out. [Taking an apple and some cobnuts 
from his pocket and giving them to BEATJS.] These 
are for you, dear, with my love. I sneaked 'em off 
the sideboard as I came out. 

BEATIE. 
Oh, I mustn't take them 1 



a THE MAGISTRATE. 

CiS. 

Yes, you may it's my share of dessert. Besides, 
it's a horrid shame you don't grub with us. 

BEATIE. 
What, a poor little music mistress ' 

Cis. 

Yes, They're only going to give you feral* guineas 
a quarter. Fancy getting a girl like you for four 
guineas a quarter why, an eighth of you is worth 
more than that ! Now peg away at your apple. 

[ Produces a cigarette. 

BEATIE. 

There's company at dinner, isn't there ? 

[Munching her apple. 

Cis. 

Well, hardly. Aunt Charlotte hasn't arrived yet, 
so there's only old Bullamy. 

BEATIE. 
Isn't old Bullamy anybody ? 

Cis. 

Old Bullamy well, he's only like the guv'nor, a 
police magistrate at the Mulberry Street Police Courfc. 

BEATIE. 
Oh, does each police court have two magistrates ? 

Cis. 
[Proudly.] All the best have two, 



THE MAGISTRATE. j 

BEATIE. 

Don't they quarrel over getting the interesting 
cases ? I should. 

Cis. 

1 don't know how they manage perhaps they tos? 
up who's to hear the big sensations. There's a Mrs. 
Beldam, who is rather a bore sometimes ; I know the 
Guv always lets old Bullamy attend to her. But, as 
a rule, I fancy they go half and half, in a friendly 
way. [Lighting cigarette.] For instance, if the guv'nor 
wants to go to the Derby he lets old Bullamy have 
the Oaks and so on, see ? 

[lie sits on the floor, comfortably reclining 
against BEATIE, and puffing his cigarette. 

BEATIE. 

Oh, I say, Cis, won't your mamma be angry when 
hlie finds I haven't gone home ? 

Cis. 

Oh, put it on to your pupil. Say I'm very 

backward. 

BEATIE. 

I think you are extremely forward in some ways. 
\Bitinfj the apple and speaking with her mouth full.] I do 
wish I could get you to concentrate your attention on 
your music lessons. But I wouldn't get you into a 
scrape ! 

Cis. 

No fear of that. Ma is too proud of me. 

BEATIE. 
But there's your step-father, 



4 THE MAGISTRATE 

Cis. 

The dear old guv'nor ! Why, he is too good- 
natured to say "Bo!" to a goose. You know, 
Beatie, I was at a school at Brighton when ma got 
married when she got married the second time, I 
mean and the guv'nor and I didn't make each other's 
acquaintance till after the honeymoon. 

BEATIE. 

Oh, fancy your step-father blindly accepting such a 
responsibility. [Gives Mm a cobnut to crack for her. 

CiS. 

Yes, wasn't the guv'nor soft I I might have been 
a very indifferent sort of young fellow for all he knew, 

[Having cracked the nint with his teeth, he 
returns it to her. 

BEATTE. 
Thank you, dear. 

Cis. 

Well, when I heard the new dad was a police 
magistrate, I was scared. Said I to myself, "If I 
don't mind my P's and Q's, the guv'nor from force of 
habit will fine me all my pocket-money." But it's 

quite the reverse he's the mildest, meekest [The 

door opens suddenly, ,] Look out ! Seme one coming ! 

[They loth jump up, BEATIE scattering the nuts 
that are in her lap all over the floor. Cis 
throws his cigarette into the fireplace and 
sits at the piano, playing a simple exercise, 
very badly. BEATIE stands behind hiw 
counting. 



THE MAGISTRATE. f 

BEATIE. 

One and two and one and two. 
WYKE, the butler, appears at the door, and mysteriously 
doses it after him. 

WYKE. 
Ssss ! Master Cis ! Master Cis I 

Cis. 
Hallo what is it, Wyke ? 

WYKE. 

[Producing a decanter from under his coat.] The 
port wine what you asked for, sir. I couldn't get it 
away before the old gentlemen do hug port wine so. 

Cis. 
Got a glass ? 

WYKE. 

Yes, sir. [Producing wine-glass from his pocket, 
and pouring out wine.] What ain't missed ain't 
mourned, eh, Master Cis ? 

Cis. 
[Offering ivine.] Here you are, Beatie dear. 

BEATIE. 
The idea of such a thing 1 I couldn't 1 

Cis. 
Why not ? 

BEATIE. 

If I merely sipped it I shouldn't be able to give 
you your music lesson properly. Drink it yourself, 
you dear, thoughtful boy. 



6 THE MAGISTRATE. 

CIS. 
I shan't it's for yon. 

BEATIE. 
I can't drink it I 

Cis. 

You must. 

BEATIE, 
I won't I 

GJS. 

You're disagreeable ! 

BEATIE. 

Not half so disagreeable as you are. 

[They wrangle. 

WYKE. 

[To himself, watching them.] What a young gentle- 
man it is ! and only fourteen ! Fourteen he behaves 
like forty ! [Cis chokes as he is drinking the wine ; 
BEATIE pats him on the back.] Why, even, Cook has 
made a 'ash of evory thing, since he's been in the 

house, and as for Popham ! [Seeing some one 

approaching^ Look out, Master Cis ! 

[Cis returns to the piano, BEATIE counting 
as before. WYKE pretends to arrange the 
window curtains, concealing the decanter 
behind him. 

BEATIE. 

One and two and one and two and one, <tc. 
Enter POPHAM, a smart-looking maid-servant. 






THE MAGISTRATE. 7 

POPHAM, 

Wyke, where's the port ? 

WYKB. 
[Vacantly.} Port? 

POPHAM. 
Port wine. Missus is furious. 

WYKK. 
Port? 

POPIIAM. 

[Pointing to the decanter.] Why ! There ! YoYre 
carrying it about with you ! 

WYKE. 

Why, so I am ! Carrying it about with me ! Shows 
what a sharp eye I keep on the guv'nor's wines. 
Carrying it about with me ! Missus will be amused. 

[Goes out. 
POPHAM. 

[Eyeing Cis and BEATIE.] There's that boy with 
tier again ! Minx ! Her two hours was up long ago. 
Why doesn't she go home ? Master Cis, I've got a 
message for you. 

Cis. 
[Rising from the piano.] For me, Popham ? 

POPHAM. 

Yes, sir. [Quietly to him.] The message is from a 
young lady who up to last Wednesday was a}\ in all 
to you. Her name is Emma Popham. 



8 THE MAGISTRATE. 

CIS. 
[Trying to get away.~\ Oh, go along, Popham ! 

POPHAM. 

[Holding his sleeve.] Ah, it wasn't "Go along, 
Popham " till that music girl came into the house. I 
will go along, but cast your eye over this before you 
sleep to-night. [She takes out of her pocket-Jiandker- 
chief a piece of printed paper which she hands him be- 
tween her finger and thumb.] Part of a story in " Bow 
Bells," called "Jilted; or, Could Blood Atone?" 
Wrap it in your handkerchief it came round the 
butter. 

[She goes out ; Cis throws the paper into the grate. 

Cis. 
Bother the girl ! Beatie, she's jealous of you I 

BEATIE. 

A parlour-maid jealous of me and with a bit of a 
child of fourteen ! 

Cis. 

I may be only fourteen, but I feel like a grown up 
man ! You're only sixteen there's not much differ- 
ence and if you will only wait for me, I'll soon catch 
you up and be as much a man as you are a woman, 
Will you wait for me, Beatie ? 

BEATIE. 
I can't I'm getting older every minute ! 

Cis. 

Oh, I wish I could borrow five or six years from 
somebody I 



THE MAGISTRATE. 9 

BEATIE. 

Many a person would be glad to lend them. 
[Lovingly] And oh, I wish you could ! 

Vis. 
[Putting his arm round her.] You io ! Why ? 

BEATIE. 
Because I because 

Cis. 
[Listening] Look out ! Here's the mater ! 

[They run to the piano, he resumes playing^ 
and she counting as before. 

BEATIE. 
One and two and one and two, <fec. 

Enter AGATHA POSKET, a handsome, showy woman, o/ 
about thirty-six, looking perhaps younger. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Why, Cis child, at your music again ? 

Cis. 

Yes, ma, always at it. You'll spoil my taste by 
forcing it if you're not careful. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
We have no right to keep Miss Tomlinson so late. 

BEATIE. 

Oh, thank you. it doesn't matter. I I ara 
afraid we're not making very great pi-ogress. 




io THE MAGISTRATE. 

Cis. 

[Winking at BEATIE.] Well, if I play that again, 
will you kiss me ? 

BEATIE. 

[Demurely.] I don't know, I'm sure. [To AGATHA 
POSKET.] May I promise that, m'am ? 

[Sits in the window recess. Cis, joining her, 
puts his arm round her waist. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

No, certainly not. [To herself, watching them] 
If I could only persuade ^neas to dismiss this 
protegee of his, and to engage a music- master, it 
would ease my conscience a little. If this girl 
knew the truth, how indignant she would be I And 
then there is the injustice to the boy himself, and 
to my husband's friends who are always petting 
and fondling and caressing what they call " a fine 
little man of fourteen!" Fourteen! Oh, what an 
idiot I have been to conceal my child's real age ! 
[Looking at the clock.] Charlotte is late ; I wish she 
would come. It will be a relief to worry her with my 
troubles. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Talking outside] We smoke all over the house, 
Bullamy, all over the house. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

I will speak to ^Eneas about this little girl, at any 
rate. 



THE MAGISTRATE. il 

Enter MR. POSKET, a mild gentleman of about fifty, 
smoking a cigarette, followed by MR. BULLAMY, 
a fat, red- faced man with a bronchial cough and 
general huskiness. 

MR. POSKET. 
Smoke anywhere, Bullamy smoke anywhere. 

MR. BULLAMY. 
Not with my bronchitis, thank ye. 

MR. POSKET. 
[Beaming at AGATHA POSKET.] Ah, my darling ! 

MR. BULLAMY. 

[Producing a small box from his waistcoat pocket] 
All I take after dinner is a jujube sometimes two. 
[Offering the box.] May I tempt Mrs. Posket ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

No, thank you. [Treading on one of the nuts which 
have been scattered over the room.] How provoking 
who brings nuts into the drawing-room ? 

MR. POSKET. 

Miss Tomlinson still here ? [To BEATIE.] Don't 
go, don't go. Glad to see Cis so fond of his music. 
Your sister Charlotte is behind her time, my darling. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Her train is delayed, I suppose. 

MR. POSKET. 
You must stay and see my sister-ii^aw, Bullamy. 



12 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. BULLAMY. 

Pleasure pleasure ! 

MR. POSKET. 

/ have never met her yet, we will share first im- 
pressions. In the interim, will Miss Tomlinson 
delight us with a little music ? 

MR. BULLAMY. 

[Bustling up to the piano.'] If this young lady is 
going to sing she might like one of my jujubes, 

[BEATIE sits at the piano with Cis and Mn. 
EULLAMY on e.ach sidp. qffier. \ MR. PoSKET 
on a nut as he walks over to his 
wife. 

]\Jn. POSKET. 

Dear me how come nuts into the dra \ving-room ? 
[To AGATHA.] Of what is my darling thinking so 
deeply ? [Treads on another nut.] Another ! My 
pet, there are nuts on the drawing-room carpet I 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Yes, I want to speak to you, ^neas. 

MR. POSKET. 
About the nuts? 

AGATHA POSHET. 
No about Miss Tomlinson-Vyour little protfyct. 



MR. POSKET. 

Ah, nice little thing. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 13 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Very. But not old enough to exert any decided 
influence over the boy's musical future. Why not 
engage a master ? 

MR. POSKET. 
What, for a mere child ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
A mere child oh 1 

ME. POSKET. 
A boy of fourteen ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[To herself.] Fourteen ! 

MR. POSKET. 
A boy of fourteen, not yet out of Czerny's exercises. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To herself.] If we were alone now, I might have i / 
the desperation to tell him all I v 

MR. POSKET. 

Besides, my darling, you know the interest I take 
in Miss Tomlinson ; she is one of the brightest little 
spots on my hobby-horse. Like all our servants, like 
everybody in my employ, she has been brought to my 
notice through the unhappy medium of the Police 
Court over which it is my destiny to preside. Our 
servant, Wyke, a man with a beautiful nature, is the 
Bon of a person I committed for trial for marrying 



1 4 THE MAGISTRATE. 

three wives. To this day, Wyke is ignorant as to 
which of those three wives he is the son of ! Cook 
was once a notorious dipsomaniac, and has even now 
not entirely freed herself from early influences. 
Popham is the unclaimed charge of a convicted baby- 
farmer. Even our milkman came before me as a 
man who had refused to submit specimens to the 
analytic inspector. And this poor child, what is 
she? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Yes, I know. 

MR. POSKET. 

The daughter of a superannuated General, who 
abstracted four silk umbrellas from the Army and 
Navy Stores and on a fine day too ! 

[BEATIE ceases playing 

MR. BULLAMY. 
Very good very good ! 

MR. POSKET. 
Thank you thank you ! 

MR. BULLAMY. 

[To MR. POSKET, coughing and laughing and popping 
a jujube into his mouth.] My dear Posket, I really must 
congratulate you on that boy of yours your step- 
son. A most wonderful lad. So confoundedly ad- 
vanced too. 

MK. POSKET. 
Yes, isn't he ? . Eh 1 



THE MAGISTRATE. 15 

MR. BULLAMY. 

[Confidentially] While the piano was going on 
just now, he told me one of the most humorous 
stories I've ever heard. [Laughing heartily and pant- 
ing, then taking another jujube.] Ha, ha, bless me, J 
don't know when I have taken so many jujubes ! 

ME. POSKET. 

My dear Bullamy, my entire marriage is the greatest 
possible success. A little romantic, too. [Pointing 
to AGATHA POSKET.] Beautiful woman 1 

MB. BULLAMY 

Very, very. I never committed a more stylish, 
elegant creature. 

ME. POSKET. 

Thank you, Bullamy we met abroad, at Spa, when 
I was on my holiday. 

WYKE enters with tea-tray, which he luinds round. 

MR. BULLAMY. 
I shall go there next year. 

MR. POSKET. 

She lost her first husband about twelve months ago 
in India. He was an army contractor. 

BEATIE. 

[To Cis at the piano.] I must go now there's no 
excuse for staying any longer. 



1 6 THE MAGISTRATE. 

Ois. 

[To her disconsolately.] What the deuce shall / do * 
MB. POSKET. 

[Pouring out milk.] Dear me, this milk seems very 
poor. When he died, she came to England, placed 
her boy at a school in Brighton, and then moved 

about quietly from place to place, drinking 

[Sips tea. 

MR. BULLAMF. 
Drinking ? 

MR. POSKET. 

The waters she's a little dyspeptic. [WYKE goes 
out.] We encountered each other at the Tours dts 
Fontaines by accident I trod upon her dress 

BEATIE. 
Good-night, Cis dear. 

Cis. 
Ohl 

MR. POSKET. 

[Continuing to MR. BULLAMY.] I apologised. We 
talked about the weather, we drank out of the same 
glass, discovered that we both suffered from the same 
ailment, and the result is complete happiness. 

P/e bends over AGATHA POSKET gallantly, 

AGATHA POSKET. 
1 

[He kisses her, then Cis kisses BEATIE, loudly, 
MR. POSKET and MR. BULLAMY loth 
listen puzzled. 




THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKET. 

Echo? 

ME. BULLAMY. 

Suppose so ! 

[He kisses the back of his hand experimentally; 
BEATIE kisses Cis. 

MR. BULLAMY. 

Yes. 

Curious. [To MR. BULLAMY.] Romantic story, isn't it? 

BEATIE. 

Good-night, Mrs. Posket ! I shall be here early 
to-morrow morning. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
I am afraid you are neglecting your other pupils. 

BEATIE. 

Oh, they're not so interesting as Cis [correcting 
herself] Master Farringdon. Good-night. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Good-night, dear. 

[BEATIE goes out quietly; AGATHA POSKET 
joins Cis. 

MR. POSKET. 

[To MR. BULLAMY.] We were married abroad with- 
ouc consulting friends or relations on either side. 
That's how it is I have never seen my sister-in-law, 
Miss Verrinder, who is coming from Shropshire to 
stay with us she ought to 

a 



iS THE MAGISTRATE. 

WYKE enters. 
WYKE. 

Miss Verrinder has come, ma'am. 

ME. POSKET. 
Here she is. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Charlotte ? 

CHARLOTTE, a fine handsome girl, enters, followed by 
POPHAM with hand luggage. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[Kissing her.] My dear Charley. 

[WYKE goes out. 
CHARLOTTE. 

Aggy darling, aren't I late I There's a fog on the 
line you could cut it with a knife. [Seeing Cis.] Is 
that your boy ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Yes. 

CHARLOTTE. 

Good gracious! What is he doing in an Eton 
jacket at his age ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[Softly to CHARLOTTE.] Hush! don't say a word 
about my boy's age yet awhile. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Oh! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[About to introduce MR. POSKET.] There is my 
husband. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 19 

CHARLOTTE. 

[Mistaking MR. BULLAMY for him.] Oh ! how could 
she! [To MR. BULLAMY, turning her cheek to him.] I 
congratulate you I suppose you ought to kiss me. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
No, no ! 

MR. POSKET. 
Welcome to my house, Miss Verrinder. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Oh, I beg your pardon. How do you do ? 

MR. BULLAMY. 

[To himself.] Mrs. Posket's an interfering woman. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Pointing to MR. BULLAMY.] Mr. Bullamy. 

[MR. BULLAMY, aggrieved, bows stiffly. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To CHARLOTTE.] Come upstairs, dear; will you 
have some tea ? 

CHARLOTTE. 

No thank you, pet, but I should like a glass of 
soda water. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Soda water I 



20 THE MAGISTRATE. 

CHARLOTTE. 

Well dear, you can put what you like at the bottom 
of it. 

[AGATHA POSKET and CHARLOTTE go out, 
POPHAM following. 

POPHAM. 

[To Cis.] Give me back my "Bow Bells," when 
you have read it, you imp. [Goes out. 

Cis. 
By Jove, Guv, isn't Aunt Charlotte a stunner ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Seems a charming woman. 

MR. BULLAMY. 

Posket's got the wrong one ! That comes of marry- 
ing without first seeing the lady's relations. 

Cis. 

Come along, Guv let's have a gamble Mr. Bull- 
amy will join us. 

[Opens the card-table, arranges chairs and 
candles, 

MR. BULLAMY. 
A gamble ? 

MR. POSKET. 

Yes the boy has taught me a new game called 
11 Fireworks ; " his mother isn't aware that we play 
for money, of course, but we do. 



THE MAGISTRATE. si 

MB. BULLAMY. 

Ha, ha, ha ! Who wins ? 

MR. POSKET. 

He does now but he says I shall win when I know 
the game better. 

MR. BULLAMY. 
What a boy he is! 

MR. POSKET. 

Isn't he a wonderful lad ? And only fourteen, too. 
I'll tell you something else perhaps you had better 
not mention it to his mother. 

MK. BULLAMY. 
ETo, no, certainly not. 

MR. POSKET. 
He's invested a little money for me. 

MR. BULLAMY. 
What in? 

MR. POSKET. 

Not in on on Sillikin for the Lincolnshire 
Handicap. Sillikin to win and Butterscotch one, 
two, three. 

MR. BULLAMY. 

Good Lord ! 

MR. POSKET. 

Yes, the dear boy said, " Guv, it isn't fair you 
should give me all the tips, I'll give you some," and 



29 THE MAGISTRATE. 

he did he gave me Sillikin and Butterscotch. He'll 
manage it for you, if you like. " Plank it down," he 
calls it. 

MR. BULLAMY. 

[Chuckling and choking.'] Ha ! ha I Ho ! ho ! 
[Taking a jujube.] This boy will ruin me in jujubes. 

Cis. 

All ready I Look sharp ! Guv, lend me a sov to 
start with 

MR. POSKET. 

A sov to start with ? [They sit at the table. AGATHA 
POSKET and CHARLOTTE come into the room.] We 
didn't think you would return so soon, my darling. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Go on amusing yourselves, I insist, only don't teach 
my Cis to play cards. 

MR. BULLAMY. 
Ho ! ho ! 

MR. POSKET. 
[To MR. BULLAMY.] Hush ! Hush I 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To CHARLOTTE.] I'm glad of this we can tell each 
other our miseries undisturbed. "Will you begin ? 

CHARLOTTE. 

Well, at last I am engaged to Captain Horace 
Vale. 



THE MAGISTRATE. *$ 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Oh! Charley, I'm so glad 1 

CHARLOTTE. 

Yes so is he he says. He proposed to me at the 
Hunt Ball in the passage Tuesday week. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

I What did he say ? 

CHARLOTTE. 
He said, " By Jove, I love you awfully." 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Well and what did you say ? 
CHARLOTTE. 

Oh, I said, " Well, if you're going to be as eloquent 
as all that, by Jove, I can't stand out." So we settl 
it, in tha passage. He bars flirting till after we're 
married.! That's my misery. What's yours, Aggy? 

^^*~ AGATHA POSKET. 

Something awful 1 

CHARLOTTE. 
Cheer up, Aggy ! What is it ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Well, Charley, you know I lost my poor dear first 
husband at a very delicate age. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Well, you were five-and-thirty, dear. 




24 THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Yes, that's what I mean. Five-and-thirty is a very 
delicate age to find yourself single. You're neither 
one thing nor the other. You're not exactly a two- 
year-old, and you don't care to pull a hansom. How- 
ever, I soon met Mr. Posket at Spa bless him ! 

CHARLOTTE. 

And you nominated yourself for the Matrimonial 
Stakes. Mr. Farringdon's The Widow, by Bereave- 
ment, out of Mourning, ten pounds extra. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Yes, Charley, and in less than a month I went 
triumphantly over the course. But, Charley dear, I 
didn't carry the fair weight for age and that's my 
trouble. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Oh, dear! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Undervaluing ^Eneas' love, in a moment of, I hope, 
Hot unjustifiable vanity, I took five years from my 
total, which made me thirty-one on my wedding 
morning. 

CHARLOTTE. 

Well, dear, many a misguided woman has done that 
before you. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Yes, Charley, but don't you see the consequences ? 
It has thrown everything out. As I am now thirty- 
one, instead of thirty-six as I ought to be, it stands to 



THE MAGISTRATE. IS 

reason that 1 couldn't have been married twenty 
years ago, which I was. So I have had to fib in pro- 
portion. 

CHARLOTTE. 

I see making your first marriage occur only 
fifteen years ago. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Exactly. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Well then, dear, why worry yourself further ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Why, dear, do .i't you see ? If I am only thirty- 
one now, my boy couldn't have been born nineteen 
years ago, and if he could, he oughtn't to have been, 
because, on my own showing, I wasn't married till 
four years later. Now you see the result ! 

CHARLOTTE. 

Which is, that that fine strapping young gentlemar 
over there is only fourteen. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Precisely. Isn't it awkward ! and his moustache is 
becoming more and more obvious every day. 

CHARLOTTE. 
What does the boy himself believe ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

He believes his mother, of course, as a boy should - 
As a prudent woman, I always kept him in ignorance 
of his age in case of necessity. But it is terribly hard 




26 THE MAGISTRATE. 

on the poor child, because his aims, instincts, and 
ambitions are all so horribly in advance of his con* 
dition. His food, his books, his amusements are out 
of keeping with his palate, his brain, and his disposi- 
tion ; and with all this suffering his wretched 
mother has the remorseful consciousness of having 
shortened her offspring's life. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Oh, come, you haven't quite done that. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Yes, I have because, if he lives to be a hundred, 
he must be buried at ninety-five. 

CHARLOTTE. 
That's true. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Then, there's another aspect. He's a great favour 
ite with all our friends women friends especially 
Even his little music mistress and the girl-servants 
hug and kiss him because he's such an engaging boy, 
and I can't stop it. But it's very awful to see these 
innocent women fondling a young man of nineteen. 

CHARLOTTE. 
The women don't know it. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

But they'd like to know it. I mean they ought to 
know it ! The other day I found my poor boy sitting 
on Lady Jenkins's lap, and in the presence of Sir 
George. I have no right to compromise Lady Jenkins 



THE MAGISTRATE. 27 

in that way. And now, Charley, you see the whirl- 
pool in which I am struggling if you can throw me 
a rope, pray do. 

CHARLOTTE. 
What sort of a man is Mr. Posket, Aggy ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

The best creature in the world. He's a practical 
philanthropist. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Urn he's a Police Magistrate, too, isn't he ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Yes, but he pays out of his own pocket half the 
fines he inflicts. That's why he has had a reprimand 
from the Home Office for inflicting such light penalties. 
All our servants have graduated at Mulberry Street. 
Most of the pictures in the dining-room are genuine 
Constables. 

CHARLOTTE. 

Take my advice tell him the whole story. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
I dare not 1 

CHARLOTTE. 
Why? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

I should have to take such a back seat for the resfe 
of my married life. 

[The party at the card- table breaks up. 



2$ THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. BULLAMY. 

[Grumpily."] No, thank you, not another minute. 
[To MR. POSKET.] What is the use of talking about 
revenge, my dear Posket, when I haven't a penny 
piece left to play with ? 

MR. POSKET. 

I'm in the same predicament ! Cis will lend us 
some money, won't you, Cis ? 

Cis. 

Rather ! 

MR. BULLAMY. 

No, thank ye, that boy is one too many for me. 
I've never met such a child. Good-night, Mrs. Posket. 
[Treads on a nut.] Confound the nuts 1 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Going so early ? 

Cis. 

[To MR. POSKET.] I hate a bad loser, don't you 
Guv? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Show Mr. Bullamy down stairs, Cis- 

MR. BULLAMY. 

Good-night, Posket. Oh ! I haven't a shilling 
left for my cabman. 

Cis. 
I'll pay the cab. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 29 

MR. BULLAMY. 

No, thank you I I'll walk. [Opening jujube box.] 
Bah ! Not even a jujube left and on a foggy night, 
too ! Ugh ! [Goes out. 

Enter WYKE with four letters on salver. 

Cis. 
[To WYKE.] Any for me? 

WYKE. 
One, sir. 

Cis. 

[To himself.] From Achille Blond ; lucky the mater 

didn't see it. [Goes out. 

[WYKE hands letters to AGATHA POSKET, who 

takes two, then to MR. POSKET, who takes 

one. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

This is for you, Charley already. 

[WYKE goes o\< 
CHARLOTTE. 

Spare my blushes, dear it's from Horace, Captain 
Vale. The dear wretch knew I was coming to you. 
Ileigho ! Will yon excuse me ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Certainly. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Excuse me, please ? 

CHARLOTTE. 
Certainly, my dear. 



jo THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKET. 
Certainly, my darling. Excuse me, won't you ? 

CHARLOTTE. 
Oh, certainly. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Certainly, -<3Eneas. 

[Simultaneously they all open their letters^ 
and lean back and read. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[Reading .] Lady Jenkins is not feeling very well. 

CHARLOTTE. 

If Captain Horace Vale stood before me at this 
moment, I'd slap his face ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Charlotte ! 

CHARLOTTE. 

[Reading.'] "Dear Miss Verrinder, Your desperate 
Oiitation with Major Bristow at the Meet on Tuesday 
last, three days after our engagement, has just come 
to my knowledge. Your letters and gifts, including 
the gold-headed hair-pin given meat the Hunt Ball, 
shall be returned to-morrow. By Jove, all is over ! 
Horace Yale." Oh, dear ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Oh, Charlev, I ? m so sorry ! However, you can 
lony it. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 31 

CHARLOTTE. 
[Weeping.] That's the worst of it, I can't. 

MR. POSKET. 

[To AGATHA POSKET.] My darling, you will be 
delighted. A note from Colonel Lukyn. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Lukyn Lukyn ? I seem to know the name. 

MR. POSKET. 

An old schoolfellow of mine who went to India 
many years ago. He has just come home. I met 
him at the club last night and asked him to name an 
evening to dine with us. He accepts for to-morrow. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Lukyn, Lukyn ? 

MR. POSKET. 

Listen. [Reading.] " It will be especially delightful 
to me, as I believe I am an old friend of your wife 
and of her first husband. You may recall me to her 
recollection by reminding her that I am the Captain 
Lukyn who stood sponsor to her boy when he was 
christened at Baroda." 

AGATHA POSKET. 
^Giving a loud scream.] Oh ! 

MR. POSKET. 
My dear ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
I've twisted my foot. 



32 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKET. 
How do nuts come into the drawing-room ? 

CHARLOTTE. 
[Quietly to AGATHA POSKET.] Aggy ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[To CHARLOTTE.] The boy's god-father. 

CHARLOTTE. 
When was the child christened ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
A month after he was born. They always are. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Reading the letter again.] This is very pleasant. 
AGATHA POSKET. 

[To MR. POSKET.] Let let me see the letter, I 1 
may recognise the handwriting. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Handing her the letter.] Certainly, my pet. [To 
himself.] Awakened memories of Number One. 
That's the worst of marrying a widow ; somebody is 
always proving her previous convictions. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To CHARLOTTE.] " No. 1 9 a, Cork Street I " Charley, 
put on your things and come with me. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Agatha, you're mad 1 



THE MAGISTRATE. 33 

AGATHA POSKET. 

I'm going to shut this man's mouth before he ccmes 
into this house to-morrow. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Wait till he comes. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Yes, till he stalks in here with his " How d'ye do, 
Posket ? Haven't seen your wife since the year '66, 
by Gad, sir 1 " Not I ! ^Eneas 1 

MR. POSKET. 
My dear. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Lady Jenkins Adelaide is very ill ; she can't put 
her foot to the ground with neuralgia. 

[Taking the letter from her pocktt, and giving 
it to him. 

MR. POSKET. 
Uless me I 

AGATHA POSKET. 
We have known each other for six long years. 

MR. POSKET. 
Only six weeks, my love. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Weeks are years in close frWdship. My place is 
by her side. 





34 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Reading the letter .] " Slightly indisposed, caughl 
trifling cold at the Dog Show. Where do you buy 
your handkerchiefs ? " There's nothing about neural- 
gia or putting her foot to the ground here, my darling. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

No, but can't you read between the lines, ^Eneas ? 
That is the letter of a woman who is not at all well. 

MR. POSKET. 

All right, my darling, if you are bent upon going I 
will accompany you. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Certainly not, ^Eneas Charlotte insists on being 
my companion ; we can In. p each other warm in a 
closed cab, 

MB. POSKET. 
But can't I make a third ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Don't be so forgetful, ^Eneas don't you know that 
in a four-wheeled cab, the fewer knees there are the 
better. [AGATHA POSKET and CHARLOTTE go out. 

Cis comes in hurriedly. 

Cis. 
What's the matter, Guv ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Your mother and Miss Yerrinder are going out 



THE MAGISTRATE. 35 

CIS. 

Out of their minds ? It's a horrid night. 

MR. POSKET. 
Yes, but Lady Jenkins is ill. 

Cis. 
Oh ! Is ma mentioned in the will ? 

MR. POSKET. 

Good gracious, what a boy ! No, Cis, your mother 
is merely going to sit by Lady Jenkins' bedside, to 
hold her hand, and to tell her where one goes to to 
buy pocket-handkerchiefs. 

Cis. 

By Jove ! The mater can't bo home again till half- 
past twelve or one o'clock. 

MR. POSKET. 
Much later if Lady Jenkins' condition is alarming. 

Cis. 

Hurray ! [He takes the watch out of MR. POSKET'S 
pocket.] Just half-past ten. Greenwich mean, eh, 
Guv? 

[He puts the watch to his ear, pulling MR 
POSKET towards him by the chain. 

MR. POSKET. 
What an extraordinary lid 1 

Cis. 

[Returning watch] Thanks. They have to get from 
here to Campden Hill and back again. I'll tell Wyk 
to get them the worst horse on the rank. 



36 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKBT. 
My dear child ! 

Cis. 

Three- quarters of an hour's journey from here at 
leabt. Twice three-quarters, one hour and a half. 
An hour with Lady Jenkins when women get 
together, you know, Guv, they do talk that's two 
hours and a hai. Good. Guv, will you come with 
me? 

MR. POSKET. 

Go with you! Where? 

Cis. 

Hotel des Princes, Meek Street. A sharp hansom 
does it in ten minutes. 

MR. POSKET. 

Meek Street, Hotel des Princes ! Child, do you 
know what you're talking about ? 

Cis. 

Rather. Look here, Guv, honour bright no blab 
if I show you a letter. 

MR. POSKET. 
I won't promise anything. 

Cis. 

You won't ! Do you know, Guv, you are doing a 
very unwise thing to check the confidence of a lad 
like me ? 

MR. POSKET. 

Cis, my boy ! 



THE MAGISTRATE. 37 

Cis. 

Can you calculate the inestimable benefit it is to a 
youngster to have some one always at his elbow, 
some one older, wiser, and better off than himself ? 

MR. POSKET 

Of course, Cis, of course, I want you to make a 
companion of me. 

Cis. 

Then how the deuce can I do that if you won't 
come with me to Meek Street ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Yes, but deceiving your mother ! 

Cis. 

Deceiving the mater would be to tell her a cram- 
mer a thing, I hope, we're both of us n;uch above. 

MR. POSKET. 
Good boy, good boy. 

Cis. 

Concealing the fact that we're going to have a bit 
of supper at the Hotel des Princes, is doing my 
mother a great kindness, because it would upset her 
considerably to know of the circumstances. You've 
been wrong, Guv, but we won't say anything more 
about that. Read the letter. [Gives MR. POSKET the 
letter.] 

MR. POSKET. 

[Reading in a dazed sort of a way.] " Hotel des 
Princes, Meek Street, W. Dear Sir, Unless you 



38 THE MAGISTRATE. 

drop in and settle your arrears, I really cannot keep 
your room for you any longer. Yours obediently, 
Achille Blond. Cecil Farringdon, Esq." Good 
heavens ! You have a room at the Hotel das Princes] 

Cis. 
A room 1 It's little better than a coop. 

MR. POSKET. 
You don't occupy it ? 

Cis. 

But my friends do. When I was at Brighton I 
wa f ~ in with the best set hope I always shall be. I 
left Brighton nice hole I was in. You see, Guv, 
I didn't want my friends to make free with your house. 

MR. POSKET. 
Oh, didn't you ? 

Cis. 

So I took a room at the Hotel des Princes when I 
want to put a man up he goes there. You see, Guv, 
it's you I've been considering more than myself. 

MR. POSKET. 
But you are a mere child. 

Cis. 

A fellow is just as old as he feels. I feel no end of 
a man. Hush, they're coming down I I'm off to tell 
Wyke about the rickety four-wheeler. 

MR. POSKET. 

Cis, Cis 1 Your mother will discover I have been 
out. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 3} 

CIS. 
Oh, I forgot, you're married, aren't you ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Married I 

Cis. 

Say you are going to the club. 

MR. POSKET. 
But that's not the truth, sir ! 

Cis. 

Yes it is. We'll pop in at the club on our way, 
and you can give me a bitters. [Goes out. 

MR. POSKET. 

Good gracious, what a boy ! Hotel dea. Princes, 
Meek Street! What shall I do? Tell his mother? 
Why, it would turn her hair grey. If I could only 
get a quiet word with this Mr. Achille Blond, I could 
put a stop to everything. That is my best course, not 
to lose a moment in rescuing the child from his 
boyish indiscretion. Yes, I must go with Cis to 
Meek Street. 
Enter AGATHA POSKET and CHARLOTTE, elegantly dressed. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Have you sent for a cab, ^Eneas ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Cis is looking after that. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Poor Cis 1 How late we keep him up. 

Cis comes in. 




40 THE MAGISTRATE. 

CIS. 
Wyke has gone for a cab, ma dear. 

AGATHA POSKBT. 
Thank you, Cis darling. 

Ois. 

If you'll excuse me, I'll go to my room. I've 
another bad headache coming on. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[Kissing him.] Run along, my boy. 

Cis. 
Good-night, ma. Good-night, Aunt Charlotte. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Good-night, Cis. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[To herself.] I wish the eab would come. 

[AGATHA POSKET and CHARLOTTE look out oj 
the window. 

Cis. 
\At the door.] Ahem ! Good-night, Guv. 

MR. POSKET. 

You've told a story two, sir 1 You said you were 
going up to your room. 

Cis, 
So I am to dress. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 41 

MR. POSKET. 
You said you had a bad headache coming on. 

Cis. 

So I have, Guv. I always get a bad headache at 
the Hotel des Princes. [Goes out. 

MR. POSKET. 

Oh, what a boy ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[To herself.] When will that cab come ? 

MR. POSKET. 

Ahem ! My pet, the idea has struck me that, as 
you are going out, it would not be a bad notion for 
me to pop into my club. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
The club 1 You were there last night. 

MR. POSKET. 

I know, my darling. Many men look in at their 
clubs every night. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

A nice example for Cis, truly ! I particularly 
desire that you should remain at home to-niglit, 



MR. POSKET. 
[To himself.] Oh, dear me ! 

CHARLOTTE. 

[To AGATHA POSKET.] Why not let him go to the 
club, Agatha ? 



42 THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
He might meet Colonel Lukyn there. 

CHARLOTTE. 

If Colonel Lukyn is there we shan't find him in 
Cork Street ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Then we follow him to the club. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Ladies never call at a club. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Such things have been known. 
WYKE enters. 
WYKE. 

[Grinning behind his hand.] The cab is coming, 
ma'am. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Coming ? Why didn't you bring it with you ? 

WYKE. 

1 walk quicker than the cab, ma'am. It's a goocf 
horse, slow, but very certain. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
We will come down. 

WYKE. 

[To himself^ Just what the horse has done. [To 
AGATHA POSKET.] Yes, ma'am. [WYKE goes out,. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 43 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Good-night, ^Eneas. 

ME. POSKET. t 

[Nervously^ I wish you would allow me to go to 
the club, my pet. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

^neas, I am surprised at your obstinacy. It is so 
very different from my first husband. 

MR. POSKET. 

Really, Agatha, I am shocked. I presume the late 
Mr. Farringdon occasionally used his clubs. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Indian clubs. Indian clubs are good for the liver, 
London clubs are not. Good-night ! ^^ 

**^+*if^^*^ 
MR. POSKET. 

I'll see you to your cab, Agatha. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
No, thank you. 

MR. POSKET. 
Upon my word ! 

CHARLOTTE. 

[To AGATHA POSKET.] Why not ? 
AGATHA POSKET. 

He would want to give the direction to the cal> 
man 1 



44 THE MAGISTRATE. 

CHARLOTTE. 

The first tiff. [To MR. POSKET.] Good-night, Mr. 
Posket. 

MR. POSKET. 
Good-night, Miss Yerrinder. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To MR. POSKET.] Have you any message for Lad} 
Jenkins ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Confound Lady Jenkins. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

I will deliver your message in the presence of Sir 
George, who, I may remind you, is the permanent 
Secretary at the Home Office. 

[AGATHA POSKET and CHARLOTTE go out; 
MR. POSKET paces up and down excitedly. 

MR. POSKET. 

Gurrh ? I'm not to go to the club ! I set a bad 
example to Cis ! Ha ! ha ! I am different from her 
first husband. Yes, I am I'm alive for one thing. 
I I I I I'm dashed if I don't go out with the 

boy. 

Cis. 

[Putting his head in at the door.] Coast clear, Guv ? 
All right. 

Enter Cis, in fashionable evening dress, carrying MR. 
POSKET'S overcoat and hat. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 45 

ClS. 
Here are your hat and overcoat. 

MR. POSKET. 
Where on earth did you get that dress suit ? 

Cis. 

Mum's the word, Guv. Brighton tailor six 
months' credit. He promised to send in the bill to 
you, so the mater won't know. [Putting MR. POSKET'S 
hat on his head.] By Jove, Guv, don't my togs show 
you up? 

MR. POSKET. 

I won't go, I won't go. I've never me t such a boy 
before. 

Cis. 

[Proceeds to help him with his overcoat.] Mind your 
arm, Guv. You've got your hand in a pocket. No, 
no that's a tear in the lining. That's it. 

MR. POSKET. 
I forbid you to go out ! 

Cis. 

Yes, Guv. And I forbid you to eat any of those 
devilled oysters we shall get at the Hotel des Princes, 
Now you're right ! 

MR. POSKET. 
I am not right 1 



46 THE MAGISTRATE. 

CIS. 

Oh, I forgot ! \He pulls out a handful of loose 
money.] I found this money in your desk, Guv. You 
had better take it out with you ; you may want it. 
Here you are gold, silver, and coppers. [He empties 
the money into MR. POSKET'S overcoat pocket] One last 
precaution, and then we're off. 

[Goes to the writing-table, and writes on a half- 
sheet of note-paper. 

MR. POSKET. 

I shall take a turn round the Square, and then 
come home again ! I will not be influenced by a 
mere child ! A man of my responsible position a 
magistrate supping slily at the Hotel des Princes, 
in Meek Street it's horrible. 

Cis. 

Now, then we'll creep downstairs quietly so as not 
to bring Wyke from his pantry. [Giving MR. POSKET 
paper] You stick that up prominently, while I blow 
out the candles. [Cis blows out the candles on thejnano. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Reading] " Your master and Mr. Cecil Farring- 
don are going to bed. Don't disturb them." I will 
not be a partner to any written document. This is 
untrue. 

Cis. 

No, it isn't we are going to bed when we come 
home. Make haste, Guv. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 47 

MR. POSKET. 
Oh, what a boy. 

[Pinning the paper on to the curtain. 

Cis. 

[Turningdown the lamp, and watching MR. POSKET.] 
Hallo, Guv ! hallo ! You're an old hand at this sort of 
game, are you ? 

MR. POSKET. 
How dare you ! 

Cis. 

[Taking MR. POSKET'S arm.] Now, then, don't 
breathe. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Quite demoralised.] Cis ! Cis ! Wait a minute 
wait a minute ! 

Cis. 
Hold up, Guv. [WYKE enters] Oh, bother 1 

WYKE. 
{To MR. POSKET.] Going out, sir ? 

MR. POSKET. 

[Struggling to be articulate.'] No yes that im- 
partially half round the Square, and possibly er 
urn back again. [To Cis.] Oh, you bad boy ' 



48 THE MAGISTRATE. 

WYKE. 

[Coolly going up to the paper on curtains.] Shall 1 
take this down now, sir ? 

MR. POSKET. 

[Quietly to Cis.] I'm in aa awful position I What 
am I to do ? 

Cis. 
Do as I do tip him. 

MR. POSKET. 
What ! 

Cis 
Tip him. 

MR. POSKET. 
Oh, yes yes. Where's my money ? 

[Cis takes two coins out of MR. POSKET'S 
pocket and gives them to him without 
looking at them. 

Cis. 
[To MR. POSKET.] Give him that. 

MR. POSKET. 
Yos. 

Cis. 

And say " Wyke, you want a new umbrella buy 
a very good one. Your mistress has a latch-key, so 
go to bed." 

MB, POSKET. 

Wyke! 



THE MAGISTRATE. 49 

WYKE. 

Yes, sir. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Giving him money.] Go to bed buy a very good 
one. Your mistress has a latch-key so so you 
want a new umbrella ! 

WYKE. 

All right, sir. You can depend on me. Are you 
well muffled up, sir ? Mind you take care of him, 
Master Cis. 

Cis. 

[Supporting MR. POSKET; MR. POSKET groaning 
softly.] Capital, Guv, capital. Are you hungry? 

MR. POSKET. 

Hungry 1 You're a wicked boy. I've told a false- 
hood. 

Cis. 

Nd, you haven't, Guv he really does want a new 
umbrella. 

MB. POSKET. 

Does he, Cis ? Does he ? Thank heaven 1 

[They go out. 
WYKE. 

[Looking at money] Here ! What, twopence ! 
[Throws the coins down in disgust.] I'll tell the 
missus. 

END OF TITE FIRST ACT. 



THE SECOND ACT 

The scene is a supper-room at the Hotel des Princes, 
Meek Street, with two doors the one leading into 
an adjoining room, the other into a passage and 
a window opening on to a balcony. 

ISIDORE, a French waiter, is showing in Cis and MR. 
POSKET. 

Cis. 
Come on, Guv come on. How are you, Isidore ? 

ISIDORE. 

I beg your pardon I am quite well, and so are 
you, zank you. 

Cis. 

I want a pretty little light supper for myself and 
my friend, Mr. Skinner. 

ISIDORE. 
Mr. Skinner. 

MR. POSKET. 
\To Cis.] Skinner ! Is some one else coming ? 

Cis. 
No, no. You're Skinner. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 51 

MR. POSKET. 
Oh 1 [ Wanders round the room 

Cis. 

Mr. Skinner, of the Stock Exchange. What have 
you ready ? 

ISIDORE. 

[In an undertone to Cis.] I beg your pardon very 
good but Monsieur Blond he say to me, " Isidore, 
listen now ; if Mr. Farringdon he come here, you 
say, 1 beg your pardon, you are a nice gentleman, 
but will you pay your little account when it is quite 
convenient, before you leave the house at once." 

Cis. 

Quite so, there's no difficulty about that. AYhit'a 
the bill ? 

ISIDORE. 

[Gives the bill.] I beg your pardon. Eight pounds 
four shillings. 

Cis. 

Phew ! Here go my winnings from old Bullamy 
and the Guv. [Counting out money^\ Two pmnd.s 
short. [Turning to MR. POSKET, who is carefully 
tx&nwn&ng the scratches on the mirrors.] Skinner 1 
Skinner 1 

MR. POSKET. 

Visitors evidently scratch their names on the 
mirrors. Dear me ! Surely this is a spurious title 
" Lottie. Duchess of Fulham ! " How very curious 1 



52 THE MAGISTRATE. 

Cis. 
Skinner, got any money with you? 

MR. POSKET. 
Yes, Cis, my boy. [Feekfor his money 

Cis. 
You always keep it in that pocket, Skinner. 

MR. POSKET. 
[Taking out money. ,] Oh, yes. 

[Cis takes two sovereigns from MR. POSKET 
and gives the amount of his bill to ISIDORE, 
who goes to the sideboard to count out 
change. 

Cis. 

.No putting the change to bed, Isidore, 

MR. POSKET. 
What's that ? 

Cis. 

Putting the change to bed 1 Isidore will show you. 
[To ISIDORE, who comes to them with the change and Ike 
bill on a plate.] Isidore, show Mr. Skinner how you 
put silver to bed. 

ISIDORE. 

Oh, Mr. Farringdon, I beg your pardon no, no 1 

MR. POSKET. 
It would be most instructive. 

ISIDORE. 

Very good. [Goes to the table, upon which he puts 
plate.] Say I have to give you change sixteen shillings. 



THE MAGISTRATE. $3 

MR. POSKET. 
Certainly. 

ISIDORE. 

Very good. Before I bring it to you I slip a little 
half-crown under the bill so. Then I put what is 
left on the top of the bill, and I say, " I beg your 
pardon, your change." You take it, you give me two 
shillings for myself, and all is right. 

MR. PoSivET. 

[Counting the silver on the bill with the end of his 
glasses.] Yes, but suppose I count the silver, it is half- 
a-crown short ! 

ISIDORE. 

Then I say, " I beg your pardon, how dare you say 
that ? " Then I do so. [He pulls the bill from the plate.] 
Then I say, " The bill is eight pounds four shillings 
[handing the plate], count again." 

MR. POSKET. 
Ah, of course, it's all right now. 

ISIDORE. 

Very good, then you give me five shillings for 
doubting me. Do it/ do it. 

MR. POSKET. 
[In a daze, giving him the five shillings.] Like this? 

ISIDORE. 

Yes, like that. [Slipping the money into his pocket.] 
I beg your pardon thank you. [Handing Cis the rest 
of 'the change.] Your change, Mr. Fairingdon. 



54 THE MAGISTRATE. 

CIS. 
Oh, I say, Isidore. 

BLOND, a fat, middle-aged French hotel-keeper, enter* 
ivith a letter in his hand. 

ISIDORE. 

Monsieur Blond. 

BLOND. 
Good evening, Mr. Farringdon. 

ISIDORE. 
[Quietly to BLOND.] Ze bill is all right. 

Cis. 

Good evening. [Introducing MR. POSKET.] My 
friend, Mr. Harvey Skinner, of the Stock Exchange. 

BLOND. 

Very pleased to see you. [To Cis.] Are you going 
to enjoy yourselves ? 

Cis. 

Rather. 

BLOND. 

You usually eat in this room, but you don't mind 
giving it up for to-night now, do you ? 

Cis. 
Oh, Achille ! 

BLOND. 

Come, come, to please me. A cab has just brought 
a letter from an old customer of mine, a gentleman 



THE MAGISTRATE. 



55 



1 haven't seen for over twenty years, who wants to 
sup with a friend in this room to-night. It's quite 
true. [Giving Cis a letter.] 

Cis. 

[Beading io himself.] " IQA, Cork Street. Dear 
Blond, Fresh, or rather, stale from India want to 
sup with my friend, Captain Vale, to-night, at my old 
table in my old room. Must do this for Auld Lang 
Syne. Yours, Alexander Lukyn." [To BLOND.] Oh, 
let him have it. Where will you put us ? 

BLOND. 

You shall have the best room in the house, the one 
next to this. This room pah ! Come with me. [To 
Mn. POSKET.] Have you known Mr. Farringdon for a 
long time ? 

ME. POSKET. 
No, no. Not very long. 

BLOND. 

Ah, he is a fine fellow Mr. Farringdon. Now, if 
you please. You can go through this door. 

[Wheels sofa away and unlocks the door. 

Cis. 

[To ME. POSKET.] You'll look better after a glass or 
two of Pommery, Guv. 

ME. POSKET. 
No, no, Cis now, no champagne. 



56 ItlE MAGISTRATE 

CIS. 

No champagne, not for my friend, Harvey Skinner 1 
Come, Guv dig me in the ribs like this, [Digging 
him in the ribs.'] Chuck.! 

MR. POSKET. 
{Shrinking.} Oh, don't ! 

Cis. 
A^d say, Hey ! Go on, Guv. 

MR. POSKET. 
I can't I can't. I don't know what it may mean. 

Cis. 

{frigging him in the ribs again} Go on ch-uck ! 

MR. POSKET. 
\VTiat, like this ? {Returning the dig.} Ch-uck. 

Cis. 

That's it, that's it. Ha, ha! You are going it, 
Guv. 

MR. POSKET. 
Am I, Cis ? Am I ? {Waving his arm} Hey! 

Cis AND MR. POSKET. 
Hey! 

Cis 
Ha, ha ! Come on ! Serve the sapper, Achille. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 57 

BLOXD. 

Ah ! he is a grand fellow, Mr. Farringdon. r Cis 
and Mr. POSKET go into the other room.] [To ISI- 
DORE.] Replace the canape. 

[There is a sharp knook. at the otJt#r door. 
BLOND follows Cis and MR. POSKET into 
the other room, then locks the door on 
the inside. 

ISIDORE. 
Come in, please. 

COLONEL LUKYN and CAPTAIN VALE enter the room. 
LUKYN is a portly, grey - haired, good - looking 
military man ; VALE is pale-^faced and heavy-eyed, 
while his manner is languid and dejected. 

LUKYN. 

This is the room. Come in, Vale. This is my old 
/supper-room I haven't set foot here for over twenty 
years. By George, I hope to sup here for another 
twenty. 

VALE. 

[Dejectedly.] Do you ? In less than that, unless I 
am lucky enough to fall in some foreign set-to, I shall 
be in Kensal Green. 

LUKYN. 

[Looking round the room sentimentally.] Twenty 
years ago ! Confound 'em, they've painted it. 

VALE. 

My people have eight shelves in the Catacombs at 
Kensal Green. 



58 THE MAGISTRATE. 

LUKYN. 

Nonsense, man, nonsense. You're a little low. 
Waiter, take our coats. 

VALE. 

Don't check me, Lukyn. My shelf is four from the 
bottom. 

LUKYN. 

You'll forget the number of your shelf before 
you're half way through your oysters. 

YALE. 

[Shaking his head.] An oyster merely reminds me 
of my own particular shell. 

[ISIDORE begins to remove YALE'S coat. 

LUKYN. 
Ha, ha ! Ha, ha ! 

YALE. 

Don't, Lukyn, don't. [In an undertone to LUKYN.] 
It's very good of you, but, by Jove, my heart is 
broken. [To ISIDORE.] Mind my flower, waiter, 
confound you. [He adjusts flower in his button-hole. 

ISIDORE. 
You have ordered supper, sir ? 

LUKYN. 

Yes, on the back of my note to Mr. Blond. Serve 
it at once. 

ISIDORE. 
I beg your pardon, sir, at once. [He goes out. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 



59 



LUKYN. 

So, you've been badly treated by a woman, eh. 
Vale? 

VALE. 

Shockingly. Between man and man, a Miss 
Verrinder Charlotte. [Turning aviayJ] Excuse me, 
Lukyn. 

[Produces a folded silk handerchief, shakes it 
out, and gently blows his nose. 

LUKYN. 

[Lighting a cigarette] Certainly certainly does 
you great credit. Pretty woman ? 




VALE. 

Oh, lovely ! A most magnificent set of teeth. 
All real, as far as I can ascertain. 



No? 
Fact. 
Great loss ; 



UKYN. 

ve a cigarette. 

VALE. 
[Taking case from LUKYN.] Parascho's ? 

LUKYN. 
Yes. Was she full grown ? 



60 THE MAGISTRATE. 

VALE. 

[Lighting his cigarette.] Just perfection. She 
rides eight-stone fifteen, and I have lost her, Lukyn. 
Beautiful tobacco. 

LUKYN. 
What finished it ? 

VALE. 

She gave a man a pair of worked slippers three 
days after our engagement. 

LUKYN. 

No? 

VALE. 
Fact. You remember Bristow Gordon Bristow ? 

LUKYN. 

Perfectly. Best fellow in the world. 

VALE. 
He wears them. 

LUKYN. 

Villain J Will you begin with a light wine, or go 
right on to the champagne ? 

VALE. 

By Jove, it's broken my heart, old fellow. I'll go 
right on to the champagne, please. Lukyn, I shall 
make you my executor. 

LUKYN. 

Pooh ! You'll outlive me 1 Why don't they bring 
the supper ? My heart has bs&n broken like yours. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 61 

It was broken first in Ireland in '55. It was broken 
again in London in '61, but in 1870 it was smashed 
in Calcutta, by a married lady that time. 

YALE. 
A married lady ? 

LUKYN. 

Yes, my late wife. Talk about broken hearts, my 
boy, when you've won your lady, not when you've lost 
her. [Enter ISIDORE with a tray of supper things.} 
The supper. [To YALE.] Hungry? 

YALE. 
[Mournfully.] Yery. 

Enter BLOND, with an envelope. 

BLOND. 
Colonel Lukyn. 

LUKYN. 

Ah, Blond, how are you ? Not a day older. What 
have you got there ? 

BLOND. 

[Quietly to LUKYN in an undertone.] Two ladies, 
Colonel, downstairs in a ca.b, must see you for a few 
minutes alone. 

LUKYN. 

Good gracious ! Excuse me, Yale. [Takes th 
envelope from BLOND, and opens it : reading the enclosed 
card.] Mrs. Posket Mrs. Posket ! " Mr?. Posket 
entreats Colonel Lukyn to see her for five minutes 



63 THE MAGISTRATE. 

upon a matter of urgent necessity, and free from 
observation." By George ! Posket must be ill in bed 
I thought he looked seedy last night. [To BLOXP ] 
Of course of course. Say I'll come down. 

BLOND. 
It is raining outside. I had better ask them up. 

LUKYN. 

Do do. I'll get Captain Vale to step into another 
room. Be quick. Tell 'em I ain quite alone. 

BLOND. 

Yes, ColoneL [Hurries out. 

Cis. 

[In the next room rattling glasses and calling.] 
Waiter ! Waiter ! Waiter-r-r 1 Where the deuce 
are you ? 

ISIDORE. 
Coming, sir, coining. I beg your pardon. 

[Bustles out. 
LUKYN. 

My dear Yale, I am dreadfully sorry to bother you. 
Two ladies, one the wife of a very old friend of mine, 
have followed me here and want half a dozen words 
with me alone. I am in your hands how can I manage 
it? 

VALE. 

My dear fellow, don't mention it. Let me go into 
another room. 



THE MAGISTRATE, 63 

LUKYN. 

Thank you, very much. You're so hungry too. 
Where's the waiter ? Confound him, he's gone ! 

VALE. 
All right. I'll pop in here. 

[He passes behind sofa and tries the door lead- 
ing into the other room. 

Cis. 
[Within.] What do you want ? Who's there ? 

VALE. 

Occupied never mind I'll find my way some- 
where. [There is a knock ; VALE draws bade. 

BLOND. 
[Without.] Colonel, are you alone ? The ladies. 

LUKYN. 

One moment. Deuce take it, Vale ! The ladies 
don't want to be seen. By George I remember. 
There's a little balcony to that window, step out for a 
few moments keep quiet I shan't detain you it's 
nothing important husband must have had a fit or 
something. 

VALE. 
9h, certainly 1 

LUKYN. 
Good fellow here's your hat. 

[In his haste he fetches his own hat. 

BLOND. 
[Outside* knocking.] Colonel, Colonel I 



64 THE MAGISTRATE. 

LUKYN. 

One moment. [Giving his hat to VALE.] Awfully 
sorry. You're so hungry too. [YALE puts on the hat t 
which is much too large for him.\ Ah, that's my hat. 

YALE. 
My dear Lukyii don't mention it. 

[Opening the window and going out. 

LUKYN. 

[Drawing the curtain over the recess} Just room for 
him to stand like a man in a sentry-box. Come in, 
Blond. 

BLOND shows in AGATHA and CHARLOTTE, 
both wearing veils. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[Agitated.} Oh, Colonel Lukyn ! 

L.UKYN. 

Pray compose yourself, pray compose yourself 1 

AGATHA POSKET. 
What will you think ? 

LUKYN. v 

That I am perfectly enchanted. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Thank you. [Pointing to CHARLOTTE.] My sister 
fLuKYN and CHARLOTTE bow 



THE MAGISTRATE. 05 

LUKYN. 

Be seated. Blond? [Softly to Mm.} Keep the 
waiter out till I ring that's all. 

[The loud pattering of rain is heard. 

BLOND. 
Yes, Colonel. 

LUKYN. 
Good gracious, Blond ! What's that ? 

BLOND. 
The rain outside. It is cats and dogs. 

LUKYN. 

[Horrified.] By George, is it ? [To himself, looking 
towards window.] Poor devil ! [To BLOND.] There 
isn't any method of getting off that balcony, is there? 

BLOND. 
No unless by getting on to it. 

LUKYN. 
What do you mean ? 

BLOND. 
It is not at all safe. Don't use it. 

[LUKYN stands horror-stricken; BLOND gets 
out. Heavy rain is heard. 

LUKYN. 

[After some nervous glances at the window^ wiping 
perspiration from his forehead.] I am honoured, Mrs. 
Posket, by this visit though for a moment I can't 
imagine 

1 



66 THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Colonel Lukyn, we drove to Cork Street to your 
iodgings, and there your servant told us you were 
supping at the Hotel des Princes, with a friend. No 
one will be shown into this room while we are here ? 

LUKYN. 

No we ah shall not be disturbed, [To himself.] 
Good heavens, suppose I never see him alive again 1 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[Sighing wearily J\ Ah ! 

LUKYN. 
I'm afraid you've come to tell me Posket is ill. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
I no my husband is at home. 

[A sharp gust of wind is heard with the rain* 

LUKYN. 
Lord forgive me I I've killed him. 

AGATHA POSKET, 
[With horror.] Colonel Lukyn 1 

. LUKYN. 
Madam 1 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Indeed Mr. Posket is at home. 

LUKYN. 

[Glancing at the window] Is he ? I wish we all 
were. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 67 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To herself.] Sunstroke evidently. Poor fellow ! 
[To LUKYN.] I assure you my husband is at home, 
quite well, and by this time sleeping soundly. 

[Cis and MR. POSKET are heard laughing in 
the next room. 

ISIDORE. 

[JFiY&m.] You are two funny gentlemen, I beg your 
pardon. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[Startled.] What is that ? 
LUKYN. 

In the next room. [Raps at the door.] Hush hush) 
hush I 

CHARLOTTE. 

Get it over, Aggy, and let us go home. I am so 
awfully hungry. 

LUKYN. 

[Peering through the curtains] It is still bearing 
him. What's his weight ? Surely he can't scale over 
ten stone. Lord, how wet he is ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Colonel Lukyn 1 

LUKYN. 

[Leaving the window sharply] Madam, command 
me ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Colonel Lukyn, we knew each other at BarecLa, 
twenty years ago. 



6S THE MAGISTRATE. 

LUKYN. 
When I look at you, impossible. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Ah, then you mustn't look at me. 

LUKYN. 
Equally impossible. 

CHARLOTTE. 
[To herself.} Oh, I feel quite out of this. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
You were at my little boy's christening . 

LUKYN. 

[Absently.'] Yes yes certainly. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
You remember what a fine little fellow ho was. 

LUKYN. 
[Thoughtfully} Not a pound over ten stone. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Colonel Lukyn I 

LFKYN. 

I beg your pardon, yes I was at the christening of 
your boy. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To herself.} One of the worst cases of sunstroke I 
Iciave ever known. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 69 

LUKYN. 

I remember the child very well. Has he still got 
that absurd mug ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Colonel Lukyn ! 

LUKYN. 
Madam ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
My child is, and always was perfect. 

LUKYN. 

You misunderstand me ! I was his godfather ; 1 
gave him a silver cup. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Oh, do excuse me. How did I become acquainted 
with such a vulgar expression ? I don't know where I 
pick up my slang. It must be through loitering at 
shop windows. Oh, oh, oh ! 

LUKYN. 

Pray compose yourself . I'll leave you for a moment. 

[Going to the window, 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[To CHARLOTTE.] How shall I begin, Charley? 

CHARLOTTE. 

Make a bold plunge, do ! The odour of cooking 
here, to a hungry woman, is maddening. 

[TALE softly opens the window and comes into 
the recess, hut remains concealed "by the 
curtain. 



70 THE MAGISTRATE. 

YALE. 

[To himself.] This is too bad of Lukyn ! I'm wet 
to the skin and frightfully hungry ! Who the deuce 
are these women ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Colonel Lukyn 1 

LUKYN. 
Madam. [Listening.] No crash yet. 

AGATIIA POSKET. 

[Impulsively laying her hand upon his arm] Friend 
of twenty years ! I will be quite candid with you. 
You are going to dine with us, to-morrow ? 

LUKYN. 

Madam, I will repay your candour as it deserves. 
I am. 

AGATIIA POSKET. 

My husband knows of your acquaintance with the 
circumstances of my first marriage. I know what 
When the women leave the dinner-table, 
men Become retrospective. Now, to-morrow night, 
over dessert, I beg you not to give my husband dates. 

LUKYN. 
Eh? 

AGATIIA POSKET. 
Keep anything like dates from him. 

LUKYN. 
eat stone fruit ? 





Mustn't 



THE MAGISTRATE. l\ 

AGATHA POSKET. 

No, I mean years, months, days, dates connected 
with my marriage with Mr. Farringdon. 

LUKYN. 

Dear me, sore subject ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

I will be more than candid with you. My present 
husband, having a very short vacation in the discharge 
of his public duties, wooed me but for three weeks ; 
you, who have in your time courted and married, know 
the material of which that happy period is made up. 
The future is all - engrossing to the man ; the 
presents I mean the present, a joyous dream to the 
woman. But in dealing with my past I met with 
more than ordinary difficulties. 

LUKYN. 

Don't see why late husband died a natural death 
wasn't stood on a balcony or anything. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Colonel Lukyn, you know I was six-and-thirty at 
the time of my recent marriage ! 

LUKYN. 

You surprise me ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

You know it 1 Be frank, Lukyn ! Am I oofc siy- 
and-thirty ? 

LUKYN. 
You are. 



72 THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Very well, then. In a three weeks' engagement 
how was it possible for me to deal with the various 
episodes of six-and-thirty years ? The past may be 
pleasant, golden, beautiful but one may have too 
much of a goovl thing. 

LUKYN. 
[To himself.] I am in that position now. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

The man who was courting me was seeking relax- 
ation from the discharge of multifarious responsi- 
bilities. How could I tax an already wearied 
attention with the recital of the events of thirty-six 
years ? 

LUKYN. 

What did you do ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Out of consideration for the man I loved, I sacri- 
ficed five years of happy girlhood told him I was 
but one-and-thirty that I had been married only 
fifteen years previously that my boy was but four- 
teen! 

LUKYN. 

By George, madam, and am I to subscribe to all 
this? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
I only ask you to avoid the question of dates. 

LUKYN. 

\ 

But, at a man's dinner-table 



THE MAGISTRATE. 73 

AGATHA POSKET. 

You need not spoil a man's dinner. Not only a 
man's but a woman's ! Lukyn, Lukyn ! Promise 1 

LUKYN. 

Give me a second to think. 

[LUKYN, turning away, discovers CHARLOTTE 
in the act of lifting the covers from the 
dishes and inspecting the contents. 

LUKYN. 

Ah, devilled oysters ! 

CHARLOTTE. 

Oh! 

[Drops dish-cover with a crash, and runs over 
to the table and sjwaks to AGATHA POSKET. 

LUKYN. 

Don't go pray look at 'em again wish I could 
persuade you to taste them. What am I to do? 
Shall I promise ? Poor Posket ! If I don't promise 
she'll cry and won't go home. The oysters are 
nearly cold cold ! What must he be ! [Drawing 
aside the curtain, and not seeing VALE, he staggers 
back.] Gone and without a cry brave fellow, brave 
fellow ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Colonel Lukyn. 

LUKYN. 

Decay of stamina in the army pah ! The young 
'uns are worthy of our best days. 



74 THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Colonel Lukyn, will you promise ? 

LUKYN. 
Promise ? Anything, my dear madam, anything. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Ah, thank you 1 May I ask you to see us to our 
cab? 

LUKYN. 

Certainly ! Thank heaven, they're going 1 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[ To CIU.RLOTTE.] It's all right ; come along! 

CHARLOTTE. 

[To AGATHA POSKET.] Oh, those oysters look so 
nice. 

LUKYN. 

[To himself.] Stop ! In my trouble, I am forgetting 
even the commonest courtesies to these ladies. [To 
AGATHA POSKET.] You have a long journey before 
you. I am sure your husband would not forgive me 
for letting you face such weather unprepared. Let 
me recommend an oyster or two and a thimbleful of 
champagne. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
No, thank you, Colonel Lukyn. 

CHARLOTTE. 
[To AGATHA POSKET.] Say yes. I'm starving. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 75 

L.UKYN. 

As you please. [To himself.] I knew they'd refuse. 
I've done my duty. 

CHARLOTTE. 

[To AGATHA POSKET.] I was in the train till seven 
o'clock. Wait till you're a bond-fide traveller accept. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Ahem ! Colonel, the fact is my poor sister has been 
travelling all day and is a little exhausted.' 

LUKYN. 

[Horrified.] You don't mean to say you're going to 

give me the inestimable pleasure. [CHARLOTTE looks 

across at him, nodding and smiling] I am delighted. 

[CHARLOTTE sits hungrily at table ; LUKYN 

fetches a bottle of champagne from the 

sideboard. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[To CHARLOTTE.] Charlotte, I am surprised. 

CHARLOTTE. 

[To AGATHA POSKET.] Nonsense, the best people 
come here. Some of them have left their names on 
the mirrors. 

VALE. 

[Behind the curtain.] This is much too bad of Lukyn. 
What are they doing now ? [LuKYN draws the cork.] 
Confound it, they're having my supper ! 

[LuKYN pours out icine. 



76 THE MAGISTRATE. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Why doesn't he give me something to eat ? 

[There is a clatter of knives and jorks heard 
from the other room, then a burst oj 
laughter from Gis. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[Starting.'] Charley, hark ! How strange ! 

CHARLOTTE. 
Very. This bread is beautiful. 

[Cis is heard singing the chorus of a comic 
song boisterously '. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Don't you recognise that voice ? 

CHARLOTTE. 

[Munching.] The only voice I recognise is the voice 
of hunger. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
I am overwrought, I suppose. 

[LuKYN, with his head drooping, fetches the 
dish of oysters from the sideboard. 

YALE. 

[Behind the curtains.] He has taken the oysters. 
I've seen him do it. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 77 

LUKYN. 

The oysters. 

[LUKYN sinks into his chair at the table and 
leans his head upon his hand; the two 
women look at each other. 

CHARLOTTE. 
[To AGATHA POSKET.] Anything wrong ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Sunstroke bad case ! 

CHARLOTTE. 

Oh poor fellow. [She gently lifts the corner of the 
iish, sniffs, then replaces cover.] No plates. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Ask for them. 

CHARLOTTE. 
You ask. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
You're hungry. 

CHARLOTTE. 
You're married. Comes better from you. 

VALE. 
[Behind curtains.} This silence is terrible. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[To LUKYN.] Ahem ! Ahem I 

LUKYN. 
[Looking up suddenly.] Eh ? 



7b THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
There are no plates. 

LUKYN. 

No plates? No plates? It's my fault. Pardon 
me. Where are the plates ? 

[VALE, still invisible, stretches out his hand 
through the curtain, takes up the plates 
and presents them to LUKYN, who recoils. 

YALE. 

[7?i a whisper.] Here are the plates. Look sharp, 
Lukyn. 

LUKYN. 

Vale ! safe and sound ! [He takes the plates, then 
grasps VALE'S extended hand.] Bless you, old fellow. 

H$elf again. [Going gaily to the table with the 
My dear ladies, I blush I positively blush 
e worst host in the world. 

VALE. 
[To himself.] By Jove, that's true. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Not at all not at all. 

LUKYN. 

[Helping the ladies.] I'll make amends, by George 1 
You may have noticed I've been confoundedly out of 
sorts. That's my temperament now up, now down. 
I've just taken a turn, ha, ha ! Oysters. 

[Handing plate to AGATHA POSKET. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 79 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Thank you. 

LUKYN. 

Ah ! I've passed many a happy hour in this room, 
The present is not the least happy. 

CHARLOTTE. 
[Trying to attract his attention.} Ahem I Ahem ! 

LUKYN. 

[Gazing up at the ceiling.'] My first visit to the 
Hotel des Princes was in the year the year let me 
think. 

CHARLOTTE. 

[Whispering to AGATHA POSKET.] Isn't he going to 
help me ? 

LUKYN. 
Was it in '55 ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[Quickly passing her plate over to CHARLOTTE.] I'm 
not hungry. 

CHARLOTTE. 
You're a dear. 

LUKYN. 

[Emphatically.] It was in '55. I'm forgetful again 
pardon me. [Re hand* plate of oysters to CHAR- 
LOTTE, and is surprised to Jind her eating vigorously. \ 

Why, I thought I [To AGATHA POSKET.] My dear 

madam, a thousand apologies. [He helps her and then 



*, THE MAGISTRATE. 

himself.] Pah ! they're cold icy you could skate on 
'em. There's a dish of something else over there. 

[He goes to the sideboard; VALE'S hand is 
again stretched forth with the other covered 
dish. 

VALE. 
I say, Lukyn. 

LUKYN. 

[Taking the dish] Thanks, old fellow. [He returns to 
the table and lifts the cover] Soles they look tempt- 
ing. If there are only some lemons ! Surely they 
are not so brutal as to have forgotten the lemons. 
Where are they? \He returns to the sideboard] 
Where are they ? [In an undertone to VALE.] Have 
you seen any lemons ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Pray, think less of us, Colonel Lukyn. Let me 
take care of you. 

LUKYN. 

You're very kind. I wish you would let me ring 
for some lemons. 

[VALE'S hand comes as before from behind the 
curtain to the sideboard, finds the dish of 
lemons, and liolds it out at arm's length. 

VALE. 
[In a whisper] Lemons. 

[AGATHA POSKET is helping LUKYN, when 
suddenly CHARLOTTE, with her fork in the 



THE MAGISTRATE. 



., 



air, leans back open-mouthed, staring 
wildly at VALE'S arm extended with the 
dish. 

CHARLOTTE. 
[In terror.] Agatha ! Agatha ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Charlotte ! what's the matter, Charley ? 

CHARLOTTE. 
Agatha ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
You're ill, Charlotte ! Surely you are nob choking ? 

CHARLOTTE. 
[Pointing to the curtains.'] Look, look ! 

[They both scream. 

LUKYN. 
Don't bo alarmed I 

CHARLOTTE. \ 

What's that ? r/7T ., , 

AGATHA POSKET. [Aether.] 
Who's that ? J 

LUKYN. 

I can explain. Don't condemn till you've hearo 
[ I- Damn it, sir, put these lemons down I 

CHARLOTTE. 
He calls him " Sir " it must be a man. 

F 



S2 THE MAGISTRATE. 

LUKYN. 

It is a man. I am not in a position to deny that. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Really, Colonel Lukyn ! 

LUKYN. 

It is my friend. He he he's merely waiting for 
his supper. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Your friend. [To CHARLOTTE.] Come home, dear. 

LUKYN. 

Do, do hear me ! To avoid the embarrassment of 
your encountering a stranger, he retreated to the 
balcony. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

To the balcony? You have shamefully compro- 
mised two trusting women, Colonel Lukyn. 

LUKYN. 

I would have laid down my life rather than have 
done so. I did lay down my friend's life. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

He has overheard every confidential word I have 
Bpoken to you. 

LUKYN. 

Hear his explanation. Why the devil don't you 
corroborate me, sir ? 

YALE. 

[From behind the curtain.] Certainly, I assure you 
I heard next to nothing. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 83 

CHARLOTTE. 
[Grasping AGATHA POSEET'S arm.] Oh, Agatha I 

VALE. 
I didn't come in till I was exceedingly wet. 

LUKYN. 
[To AGATHA POSKET.] You hear that ? 

VALE. 

And when I did come in 

CHARLOTTE. 
[Hysterically.] Horr.ce 1 

VALE. 
I beg your pardon. 

CHARLOTTE. 
It's Horace, Captain Vale. 

VALE. 

[Coming from behind the curtain, looking terribly 
wet.] Charlotte Miss Verrinder. 

CHARLOTTE. 

What are you doing here? What a fright you 
look. 

VALE. 

What am I doing here, Miss Verrinder ? Really, 
Lukyn, your conduct calls for some little explanation. 

LUKYN, 

My conduct, sir ? 



THE MAGISTRATE. 



YALE. 

You make some paltry excuse to turn me out in 
the rain while you entertain a lady who you know 
has very recently broken my heart. 

LUKYN. 
I didn't know anything of the kind. 

__ N YALE. 

I told you, Colonel Lukyn this isn't the conduct 
of an officer and a gentleman. 

LUKYN. 
Whose isn't, yours or mine ? 

YALE. 
Mine. I mean yours. 

LUKYN. 

You are in the presence of ladies, sir ; take off my 
hat. 

YALE. 
"""I beg your pardon. I didn't know I had it on. 

[He throws the hat away, and the two men 
exchange angry words. 

CHARIOTTE. 

He's a very good-looking fellow ; you don't see a 
man at his best when he's wet through; 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To LUKYN.] Colonel Lukyn, do you ever intend to 
send for a cab ? 



THE MAGISTRATE, 85 

LUKYN. 

Certainly, madam. 

VALE. 

One moment. I have some personal explanation 
to exchange with Miss Verrinder. 

CHARLOTTE. 

[To AGATHA POSKET.] The slippers. [To VALE.] I 
am quite ready, Captain Vale. 

VALE. 

Thank you. Colonel Lukyn, will you oblige me by 
stepping out on to that balcony ? 

LUKYN. 
Certainly not, sir. 

VALE. 

You're afraid of the wet, Colonel Lukyn ; you are no 
soldier. 

LUKYN. 

You know better, sir. As a matter of fact, that 
balcony can't bear a man like me. 

VALE. 

Which shows that inanimate objects have a great 
deal of common-sense, sir. 

LUKYN. 

You don't prove it in your own instance, Captain 
Vale. 



86 THE MAGISTRATE. 

VALE. 
That's a verbal quibble, sir. [They talk angrily. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To CHARLOTTE.] It's frightfully late. Tell him to 
write to you. 

CHARLOTTE. 

I must speak to him to-night ; life is too short for 
letters. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Then he can telegraph. 

CHARLOTTE. 

Half-penny a word and he has nothing but his 
pay. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Very well, then, Lady Jenkins has a telephone. 
I'll take you there to tea to-morrow. If he loves you, 
tell him to ring up 1338091. 

CHARLOTTE. 
You thoughtful angel ! 

LUKYN. 
Mrs. Posket Miss Yerrinder ahem we 

VALE. 
Colonel Lukyn and myself 

LUKYN. 

Captain Vale and I fear that we have been l>e- 
trayed, in a moment of 



THE MAGISTRATE. 87 

VALE. 
Natural irritation. 

LUKYN. 

Natural irritation, into the atrocious impropriety of 
differing 

VALE. 
Before ladies. 

LUKYN. 

Charming ladies 

VALE. 
We beg your pardon Lukyn ! 

LUKYN. 

Vale. [They grasp hands.] Mrs. Posket, I am now 
going out to hail a cab. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Pray do. 

LUKYN. 

Miss Verrinder, the process will occupy five minute* 

VALE. 

[Giving his hat to LUKYN,] Lukyn, I return youf 
kindness my hat. 

LUKYN. 
Thank you, my boy. 

(LUKYN puts on VALE'S hat, which is much too 
small for him. As he is going out there 
is a knock at the door; he opens it : BLO.ND 
is outsid*- 



88 THE MAGISTRATE. 

BLOND. 

Colonel, it is ten minutes past the time of closing, 
oaay I ask you to dismiss your party ? 

LUKYN. 
Pooh 1 Isn't this a free country ? [He goes out. 

BLOND. 

Yes, you are free to go home, Colonel. I shall get 
into trouble. [Following him ovA. 

CHARLOTTE. 

[To AGATHA POSKET.] I'll have the first word. 
Really, Captain Vale, I'm surprised at you. 

VALE. 

There was a happy time, Miss Verrinder, when 1 
night have been surprised at you. 

CHARLOTTE. 

A few hours ago it was " By Jove, all is over. 1 
Sow I find you with a bosom friend enjoying devilled 
"ysters. 

VALE. 

I beg your pardon, I find you enjoying devilled 
oysters. 

CHARLOTTE. 

Horace Vale, you forget you have forfeited the 
right to exercise any control over my diet. 

VALE. 
One would think I had broken off our engagement 



THE MAGISTRATE. 89 

CHARLOTTE. 

If you have not, who has ? I have your letter 
gaying all is over between us. [Putting her handker- 
chief to her eyes.] That letter will be stamped to- 
morrow at Somerset House. I know how to protect 
myself. 

YALE. 

Charlotte, can you explain your conduct with 
Gordon Bristow ? 

CHARLOTTE. 

I could if I chose ; a young lady can explain any- 
thing. 

VALE. 

But he is showing your gift to our fellows all over 
the place. 

CHARLOTTE. 

It was a debt of honour. He laid me a box of 
gloves to a pair of slippers about " Forked Lightning " 
for the Regimental Cup, and "Forked Lightning" 
"vent tender at the heel. I couldn't come to you with 
debts hanging over me. [Crying.] I'm too con- 
scientious. 

YALE. 
By Jove, I've been a brute. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Y-y-yes. 

YALE. 
Can you forget T ever wrote tha+, letter ? 



90 THE MAGISTRATE. 

CHAIILOTTE. 

That must be a question of time. [She lays her head 
on his shoulder and then removes it.~\ How damp you 
are. [She puts her handkerchief upon his shoulder, and 
replaces her head. She moves his arm gradually up 
and arranges it round her shoulder.] If you went on 
anyhow every time I discharged an obligation, we 
should be most unhappy. 

VALE. 

I promise you I won't mention Bristow's slippers 
again. By Jove, I won't (mere. 

CHARLOTTE. 

Very well, then, if you do that I'll give you my 
word I won't pay any more debts before our marriage. 

VALE. 
My darling ! 

[About to embrace him, but remembering that 
he is wet. 

CHARLOTTE. 
No no you are too damp. 

ISIDORE. 

[Outside.] I beg your pardon, it is a quarter of an 
hour over our time. 

[AGATHA POSKET has been sitting on the sofa ; 
suddenly she starts, listening intently. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Outside] I know I know. I'm going directly 
I can get the boy away 



THE MAGISTRATE. 
AGATHA POSKET. 



[To herself.] 

Cis. 
[Outside.] All right, Guv, you finish your bottle. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
My boy. 

ISIDORE. 

[Outside.] Gentlemen, come come. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To herself.] Miserable deceiver ! This, then, is the 
club, and the wretched man conspires to drag my boy 
down to his own awful level. What shall I do ? I 
daren't make myself known here. I know ; I'll hurry 
home, and if I reach there before tineas, which I 
shall do, I'll sit up for him. 

LUKYN returns. 
AGATHA POSKET. 
Is the cab at the door ? 

LUKYN. 
It is. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Charlotte ! Charlotte ! [Drawing her veil down. 

CHARLOTTE. 

I'm ready, dear. [To VALE.] Married sisters are 
always a little thoughtless. 

VALE. 
\0flerinq his arm.] Permit me. 



92 THE MAGISTRATE. 

LUKYN. 

[0/ering his arm to AGATHA POSKET.] My dear 
madam. 

They are all four about to leave when BLOND 
enters hurriedly. 

BLOND. 
[Holding up his handjor silence.] Hush 1 Hush I 

LUKYN. 
What's the matter ? 

BLOND. 
The police ! 

ALL. 

[In a whisper.] The police 1 

BLOND. 

[Quietly.] The police are downstairs at the door 
I told you so. 

CHARLOTTE. 
[Clint/ing to VALE.] Oh, dear ! Oh, dear ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Gracious powers ! 

BLOXD. 

Keep quiet, please. They may be satisfied with 
Madame Blond's assurances. I must put you in dark- 
ness : they can see the light here if they go round to 
the back. 

[Blows out candles, and turns down tfie other 
lights. 

AGATHA POSKET AND CHARLOTTE. 
Ohl 



THE MAGISTRATE. 93 

V 

BLOND. 

Keep quiet, please ! My licence is once marked 
already. Colonel Lukyn, thank you for this. 

[lie goes out. 
AGATHA POSKET. 

[Whimpering.] Miserable men ! What have you 
done ? Are you criminals ? 

CHARLOTTE. 

You haven't deserted or anything on my account, 
have you, Horace ? 

LUKYN. 

Hush ! Don't be alarmed. Our time has passed 
so agreeably that we have overstepped the prescribed 
hour for closing the hotel. That's all. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
What can they do to us ? 

LUKYN. 

At the worst, take our 'names and addresses, and 
summon us for being here during prohibited hours. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Oh! 

CHARLOTTE. 
[7*0 VALE ] Horace, can't you speak ? 

VALE. 
By Jove, I very much regret this. 

ISIDOEE enters. 






9* THE MAGISTRATE. 

L.UKYN. 

Well, well ? 

ISIDORE. 
I beg your pardon, the police have coine in. 

LUKYN. 

The devil ! [To AGATHA POSKET.] My dear lady, 
don't faint at such a moment. 

BI.OND enters quickly, carrying a rug. 

BLOND. 
They are going over the house ! Hide f 

AGATHA POSKET AND CHARLOTTE. 
Oh 1 [There is a general commotion. 

BLOND. 

They have put a man at the back. Keep away 
from the window. [They are all bustling, and everybody 
is talking in whispers ; LUKYN places AGATHA POSKIST 
under the table, where she is concealed by the cover ; he 
gets behind the overcoats flanging from the pegs ; YALE 
and CHARLOTTE crouch down behind sofa.] Thank you 
very much. I am going to put Isidore to bed on the 
sofa. That will explain the light which has just gone 
out. [ISIDORE quietly places himself upon the sofa; 
BLOND covering him with the rug.] Thank you very 
much. [He goes out. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 9$ 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[In a tfttycd voice.] Charley I Charley 1 

CHARLOTTE. 
Yes. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Where are you ? 

CHARLOTTE. 
Here. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Oh, where is Captain Vale ? 

ClIARLOTTK, 

I think he's near me. 

YALE. 
By Jove, Charlotte, I am ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Colonel Lukyn ! 

LUKYN. 

[From behind the coals.] Here, madam f 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Don't leave us. 

LUKYN. 
Madam, I am a soldier. 

CHARLOTTE. 

[To YALE.] Oh, Horace, at such a moment what a 
comfort we must be to each other. 




96 THE MAGISTRATE. 

VALE. 
My dear Charlotte, it's incalculable. 

[ISIDORE gently raises himself and looks over 
the back of sofa. 

CHARLOTTE. 
[In terror.] What's that ? 

ISIDORE. 

[Softly] I beg your pardon. 

BLOND enters quietly, followed by Cis and MR. POSKET 
on tip-toe, MR. POSKET holding on to Cis. 

BLOND. 

This way ; be quick. Excuse me, the police are 
just entering the room in which these gentlemen were 
having supper. One of them is anxious not to be 
asked any questions. Please to hide him and his 
friend somewhere. They are both very nice gentle- 
men. 

[lie goes out, leaving Cis and MR. POSKET. 

MR. POSKET. 
Cis, Cis. )Advise me, my boy, advise me. 

Cis. 

It's all right, Guv, it's all right. Get behind some- 
thing. 

[AGATHA POSKET peeps from under the table- 
cloth. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

and my child ! 

[Mil. POSKET and Cis wander about, looking 
for hiding-places. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 57 

VALE. 
[To Cis.] Go away. 

Cis. 
Oh! 

LUKYN*. 

[To MR. POSKET, who is fumbling at the coats.] No 
no. 

BLOND. 
[Popping his head in.] The police coming. 

[Cis disappears behind the -window-curtain. 
MR. POSKET dives under the table. 

AGATHA. POSKET. 
Oh! 

MR. POSKET. 

[To AGATHA POSKET in a whisper] I beg your 
pardon. I think I am addressing a lady. I am 
entirely the victim of circumstances. Accept my 
apologies for this apparent intrusion, [No answer.] 
Madam, I applaud your reticence, though any state- 
ment made under the present circumstances would 
not be used against you. Where is that boy ? Oh ! 
Madam, it may be acute nervousness on your part, 
but you are certainly pinching my arm. 

[There is the sound of heavy feet outside, then 
MESSITER, a gruff matter-of-fact Inspector 
of Police, enters, followed by HARRIS, a 
constable, and ACTTILLE BLOND. 

BLOND. 

You need not trouble yourself take my word for 
it. 



98 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MESSITER. 

No trouble, Mr. Blond, thank you. [Sniffing. \ 
Candles blown out lately. This is where the light 
was. 

BLOND. 

Perhaps. My servant, Isidore, sleeps here ; he has 
only just gone to bed. 

MESSITER. 

Oh ! [Taking a bulls-eye lantern from HARRIS and 
throwing the light on ISIDORE, who is apparently sleeping 
soundly .] Dead tired, I suppose ? 

BLOND. 
I suppose so. 

MESSITER. 

[Slightly turning down the covering.] He sleeps in 
his clothes ? 

BLOND. 

Oh yes. 

MESSITER. 
Always ? 

BLOND. 
Always it is a rule of the hotel. 

MESSITER. 
Oh! why's that? 

BLOND, 
To be ready for the morniiig 



THE MAGISTRATE. 09 

MESSITER. 

All right all right. [Throwing the rug and blanket 
aside.] Isidore, go downstairs and give your full 
name and particulars to Sergeant Jarvis. 

ISIDORE. 
[Rising instantly.] Yes, sir very good. 

BLOND. 

[To ISIDORE.] Why do you wake up so soon ? 
Devil take you ! 

ISIDORE. 
I beg your pardon. [He goes out. 

MESSITER. 
What is underneath that window, Mr. Blond 

BLOND. 

. The skylight over the kitchen devil take it 1 

MESSITER. 

Thank you you can go down to the sergeant now, 
Mr. Blond. 

BLOND. 
With pleasure devil take me 1 [He goes out. 

MESSITER. 
.Now then, Harris. 

HARRIS. 
Yes, sir. 



100 



THE MAGISTRATE. 
MESSITER. 



Keep perfectly still and hold your breath as long 
as you can. 

HARRIS. 
Hold my breath, sir ? 

MESSITEB. 

Yes I want to hear how many people are breath- 
ing in this room. Are you ready 2 

HARRIS. 
Yes, sir. 

MESSITER. 

Go ! [HARRIS stands still, tightly compressing his 
lips ; MESSITER quickly examines his face by the light 
of the lantern, then walks round the room, listening, 
and nodding his head with satisfaction as he passes the 
various hiding-places. HARRIS writhes in agony ; in 
the end he gives it up and breathes heavily.] Han-is 1 

HARRIS. 
[Exhausted.] Yes, sir ! 

MESSITEB. 
You're breathing 

HARRIS. 
Oh lor', yes, sir ! 

MESSITER. 
You'll report yourself to-night I 




THE MAGISTRATE. 

HARRIS. 
I held on till I nearly went off, sir. 

MESSITER. 

[Giving him the bull's-eye.] Don't ar 
up. There are half a dozen people concealed in this 
room. [There is a cry from the women. CHARLOTTE and 
VALE rise ; LUKYN steps from behind the coats.] 
I thought so. [As MESSITER turns, AGATHA POSKET 
and MR. POSKET rise, Cis comes quickly, catches hold 
of MR. POSKET, and drags him across to the window.] 

Cis. 
[To MR. POSKET.] Come on, Guv. Come on! 

[They disappear through the curtain as 
HARRIS turns up the lights. Then then 
is a cry and the sound of a crash. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

They're killed ! 

[MESSITER looks through the window. 

MESSITEB. 

No, they're not ; they've gone into the kitchen and 
vho balcony with them. Look sharp, Harris. 

[HARRIS goes out quickly, 

LUKYN. 
[To MESSLTER.] I shall report you for this, sir. 

MESSITER. 

[Taking out his note-book.'] Very sorry, sir ; it's my 
duty. 



roa THE MAGISTRATE. 

LUKYN. 

Duty, sir ! Coining your confounded detective 
tricks on ladies and gentlemen ! How dare you 
make ladies and gentlemen suspend their breathing 
till they nearly have apoplexy ? Do you know I'm 
a short-necked man, sir ? 

MESSITER. 

I didn't want you to leave off breathing, sir. I 
wanted you to breathe louder. Your name and 
address, sir. 

LUKYN. 
Gur-r-r-h 1 

MESSITER. 
Army gentleman, sir? 

LUKYN. 
How do you know that ? 

MESSITER. 

Short style of speaking, sir. Army gentlemen run 
a bit brusquish when on in years. 

LUKYN. 

Oh ! Alexander Lukyn Colonel Her Majesty's 
Cheshire Light Infantry, late 41st Foot, 3rd Bat- 
talion Bengal Retired. 

MESSITER. 
[Writing.] Hotel or club, Colonel? 

LUKYN. 
Neither. 19 A, Cork Street lodgings. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 103 

MESSITEB. 
[Writing.] Very nice part, ColoneL Thank you 

LUKYN. 

Bah! 

MESSITEB. 
Other gentleman ? 

YALE. 

[JPt$A languid hauteur.] Horace Edmund Chol- 
meley Clive Napier Yale Captain Shropshire 
Fusiliers Stark's Hotel, Conduit Street. 

MESSITEB. 
[Writing.] Retired, sir? 

YALE. 
No, confound you active ! 

MESSITEB. 

Thank you, Captain. Ahem ! Beg pardon. The 
the ladies. 

[CHARLOTTE clings to YALE, AGATHA POSKET 
to LUKYN. 

CHARLOTTE AND AGATHA POSKET. 
No no I No no ! 

LUKYN. 

[To AGATHA POSKET.] All right all right trust 
to ine ! [To MESSITER.] Well, sir ? 

MESSITEB. 
Names and addresses, please. 



t04 THE MAGISTRATE. 

LUKYN. 

Offic 3r my good fellow tell me now er urn at 
the present moment, what are you most in want 
of? 

MESSITER. 

These two ladies' names and addresses, please. Be 
quick, Colonel. [Pointing to AGATHA POSKET.] That 
lady first. 

LUKYN. 
Christian names er ah er Alice Emmeline. 

MESSITER. 
[Writing.] Alice Emmeline. Surname ? 

LUKYN. 

Erum Fitzgerald 101, Wilton Street, Picca- 
dilly. 

MESSITER. 
Single lady ? 

LUKYN. 
Quite. 

MESSITER. 
Very good, sir. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[To LUKYN, tearfully.] Oh, thank you, such a nice 
address too. 

MESSITER. 
[To VALE.] Now, Captain, please that lady. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 105 

VALE. 

[Who has been re-assuring CHARLOTTE.] Haw ! ha! 
this lady is ah um the other lady's sister. 

MESSITER. 
Single lady, sir ? 

VALE. 
Certainly. 

MESSITER. 
[Writing.] Christian name, Captain? 

VALE. 
Ah um Harriett. 

MESSITER. 
[Writing.] Surname. 

VALB. 
Er Macnamara. 

MESSITEE. 

[With a grim smile.] Quite so. Lives with her 
sister, of course, sir ? 

VALB. 
Of course. 

MKSSITER. 
Where at, sir ? 

VALE. 

Albert Mansions, Victoria Street. 
CHARLOTTE. 

[To VALE.] Oh, thank you, I always fancied that 
spot. 



106 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MESSITER, 
Very much obliged, gentlemen, 

LUKYN. 

[Who has listened to YALE'S answers in helpless 
horror.] By George, well out of it ! 

[CHARLOTTE totters across to AGATHA POSKET, 
who embraces her. 

,, LUKYN. 

[Taking down the overcoats and throwing one to 
VALE.] Vale, your coat. 

HARRIS enters. 
HARRIS. 

[To MESSITER.] Very sorry, sir; the two other 
gentlemen got clean off, through the back scullery door 
old hands, to all appearance. 

[MESSITER stamps his foot, with an exclama- 
tion. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
[To herself.] My boy saved 1 

LUKYN. 

[To HARRIS, who stands before the door.] Constable, 
get out of the way. 

MESSITER. 
[Sharply.] Harris ! 

HARRIS. 
[Without moving.] Yes, sir. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 107 

MESSITEB. 

You will leave the hotel with these ladies, and Dot 
lose sight of them till you've ascertained what theii 
names are, and where they do live. 

LUKYN AND VALE. 
What! 

AGATHA POSKET AND CHARLOTTE. 
Oh! 

MESSITER. 
Your own fault, gentlemen ; it's my duty. 

LUKYN. 

And it is my duty to save these helpless women 
from the protecting laws of my confounded country 1 
Vale! 

VALE. 

[Putting his coat on the sofa.] Active J 

LUKYN. 

[To, HARRIS.] Let these ladies pass! [He takes 
HARRIS by the collar and flings him over to VALE, wlio 
throws him over towards the ladies, who push him away. 
MESSITER puts a whistle to his mouth and blows ; there 
is an immediate answer from without] More of your 
fellows outside ? 

MESSITER. 

Yes, sir, at your service. Very sorry, gentlemen- 
but you and your party are in my custody. 

LUKYN AND VALE. 
What? 



io8 THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATIIA POSKET AND CHARLOTTE. 
Oh! 

MESSITER. 

For assaulting this man in the execution of his 
duty. 

LUKYN. 

You'll dare to lock us up all night ? 

MESSITER. 

It's one o'clock now, Colonel you'll come on first 
thing in the morning. 

LUKYN. 

Come on ? At what Court ? 

MESSITER. 
Mulberry Street. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Ah ! The magistrate ? 

MESSITER. 
Mr. Posket, mum. 

[AGATHA POSKET sinks into a chair, CHAR- 
LOTTE at her feet ; LUKYN, overcome, Jails 
on YALE'S shoulders. 



END OF THE SECOND ACT. 



THE THIRD ACT 

The first scene is t/'^e Magistrates room at Mulberry 
Street Police Court, with a doorway covered by 
curtains, leading directly into the Court, and a 
door opening into a passage. It is the morning 
after the events of the last Act. 

POLICE SERGEANT LUGO, a middle-aged man with a 
slight country dialect, enters with " T/te Times " 
newspaper, and proceeds to cut it and glance at its 
contents, while he hums a song. 

Mil. WORMINGTON, an elderly, trim and jvecise man, 
enters. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 
Good morning, Lngg. 

LUGO. 

Morning, Mr. Wormington. 

MR. WORMINGTON 
Mr. Posket not arrived yet ? 

LUGO. 

Not yet, sfr. Hullo ! [Heading.] " Raid on a West 
End Hotel. At an early hour tliis morning " 



no THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Yes, I've read that a case of assault upon the 
police. 

LUGG. 

Why, these must be the folks who've been so pre- 
cious rampageous all night. 

Mil. WOIIMINGTON. 
Very likely. 

LUGG. 

Yes, sir, protestin' and protestin' till they protested 
everybody's sleep away. Nice-looking women, too, 
though, as I tell Mrs. Lugg, now-a-days there's no 
telling who's the lady and who isn't. Who's got this 
job, sir ? 

MB. WORMINGTON. 
Inspector Messiter. 

LUGG. 

Messiter! That's luck! Why he's the worst elocu- 
tionist in the force, sir.* [As he arranges the newspaper 
upon the table, he catches sight of MR. WORMINGTON'S 
necktie, which is bright red.] Well, I excuse me, Mr. 
Wormington, but all the years I've had the honour 
of knowin' you, sir, I've never seen you wear a necktie 
with, so to speak, a dash of colour in it. 



* A City magistrate, censuring a constable for the indis- 
tinctness of his utterances in the witness box, suggested that 
the police should be instructed in a method of delivering' 
evidence articulately 



THE MAGISTRATE. in 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Well, Lngg, no, that's true, but to-day is an excep- 
tional occasion with me. It is, in fact, the twenty- 
fifth anniversary of my marriage, and I thought it 
due to Mrs. Wormington to vary, in some slight 
degree, the sombreness of my attire. I confess I am 
a little uneasy in case Mr. Posket should consider it 
at all disrespectful to the Court. 

LUGO. 
Not he, sir. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

I don't know. Mr. Posket is punctiliousness itself 
in dress, and his cravat's invariably black. However, 
it is not every man who has a silver wedding-day. 

LUGG. 
It's not every one as wants one, sir. 

[MR. WORMINGTON goes out; at the same 
moment MR. POSKET enters quickly, and 
leans on his chair as if exhausted. His 
appearance is extremely wretched; he is 
still in evening dress, but his clothes are 
muddy, and his linen soiled and crumpled t 
while across the bridge of his nose he lias a 
small strip of black plaster. 

MR. POSKET. 
[Faintly.'] Good morning, Lugg. 

LUGG. 

Good morning to you, sir. Regretting the liberty 
I'm taking, sir I've seen you look more strong and 
hearty. 



IT2 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKET. 

I am fairly well, thank you, Lugg. My night wag 
rather rather disturbed. Lugg 1 

LUGG. 
Sir? 

MR. POSKET. 

Have any inquiries been made about me, this morn- 
ing any messenger from Mrs. Posket, for instance, to 
ask how I am ? 

LUGG. 
No, sir. 

MR. POSKET. 

Oh ! my child, my stepson, young Mr. Farringdon, 
has not called, has he ? 

LUGG. 
No, sir. 

MR. POSKET. 

[To himself. ,] Where can that boy be ? [To LUGG.] 
Thank you, that's all. 

LUGG. 

[Who has been eyeing MR. POSKET with astonishment, 
goes to the door, and then touches the bridge of his 
nose.] Nasty cut while shavin', sir ? [LuGG goes out. 

MR. POSKET. 

Where can that boy have got to ? If I could only 
remember how, when, and where we parted ! I think 
it was at Kilburn. Let me think first, the kitchen. 
[Putting his hand to his side as if severely bruised .] 
Oh I Cis was all right, because I fell underneath ; I felt 



THE MAGISTRATE. TTJ 

it was my duty to do so. Then what occurred ? A 
dark room, redolent of onions and cabbages and 
paraffine oil, and Cis dragging me over the stone floor, 
saying, " We're in the scullery, Guv ; let's try and find 
he tradesmen's door." Next, the night air oh, how 
refreshing ! " Cis, my boy, we will both learn a lesson 
from to-night never deceive." Where are we ? In 
Argyll Street. " Look out, Guv, they're after us." 
Then then, as Cis remarked when we were getting 
over the railings of Portman Square then the fun 
began. We over into the square they after us. 
Over again, into Baker Street. Down Baker Street. 
Curious recollections, whilst running, of my first visit, 
as a happy child, to Madame Tussaud's, and wonder- 
ing whether her removal had affected my fortunes. 
" Come on, Guv you're getting blown." Where are 
we ? Park Road. What am I doing ? Getting up 
out of puddle. St. John's Wood. The cricket-ground, 
" I say, Guv, what a run this would be at Lord's, 
wouldn't it? and no fear of being run out either, 
more fear of being run in." " What road is this, 
Cis?" Maida Yale. Good gracious! A pious aunt 
of mine once lived in Hamilton Terrace ; she nevei 
thought I should come to this. " Guv ?" "Yes, my 
boy." " Let's get this kind-hearted coffee-stall keeper 
to hide us." We apply. "Will you assist two unfor- 
tunate gent lemen ?" " No, blowed if I will" " Why 
not?" "Cos I'm agoin' to join in the chase after 
you." Ah ! Off again, along Maida Vale ! On, on, 
heaven knows how or where, 'till at last, no sound of 
pursuit, no Cis, no breath, and the early Kilburn 
buses starting to town. Then I came back again, 
and not much too soon for the Court. [Going up to 
the wasJistand and looking into the little mirror, with a 



1*4 THE MAGISTRATE. 

low groan] Oh, how shockingly awful I look, and how 
stiff and sore I feel ! [Taking off" his coat and hanging 
it on a peg, then washing his hands.] What a weak 
and double-faced creature to be a magistrate ! I really 
ought to get some member of Parliament to ask a 
question about me in the House. Where's the soap ? 
I shall put five pounds and costs into the poor's 
box to-morrow. But I deserve a most severe caution. 
Ah, perhaps I shall get that from Agatha. [He takes 
off his white tie t rolls it up and crams it into his pocket.] 
When Wormington arrives I will borrow some money 
and send out for a black cravat ! All my pocket 
money is in my overcoat at the Hotel des Princes. 
If the police seize it there is some consolation in 
knowing that that money will never be returned to 
me. [There is a knock at the door.] Come in 1 

LUGG enters. 

LUGG. 

Your servant, Mr. Wyke, wants to see you, sir 

MR. POSKET. 

Bring him in. [LuGG goes out. Wyke! From 
Agatha ! From Agatha ! 

LUGG re-enters with WYKE. 

WYKE. 
Ahem ! Good morning, sir. 

MR. POSKET. 

Good morning, Wyke. Ahem I Is Master Far- 
ringdon quite well ? 

WYKE. 
He hadn't arrived home, when I left, sir. 



THE MAGISTRATE. u S 

ME. POSKET. 

Oh! Where is that boy? [To WYKE.] How's 
your mistress this morning, Wyke ? 

WYKE. 

Very well, I hope, sir ; she ain't come home yet, 
either. 

MR. POSKET. 
Not returned nor Miss Verrinder ? 

WYKE. 
No, sir neither of them. 

MR. POSKET. 

[To himself.] Lady Jenkins is worse, they are still 
nursing her! Good women, true women ! 

WYKE. 
[To himself.] That's eased his deceivin' old mind, 

MR. POSKET. 

[To himself.] Now, if the servants don't betray me 
and Cis returns safely, the worst is over. To what a 
depth I have fallen when I rejoice at Lady Jenkins* 
indisposition ! 

WYKE. 

Cook thought you ought to know that the mistress 
hadn't come home, sir. 

MR. POSKET. 

Certainly. Take a cab at once to Campden Hill 
and bring me back word how poor Lady Jenkins is. 
Tell Mrs. Posket I will come on the moment the Court 
rise** 



Ii6 THE MAGISTRATE. 

WYKE. 
Yes, sir. 

MR. POSKET. 

And, Wyke. It is not at all necessary that Mrs. 
Posket should know of my absence with Master 
Farringdon from home last night. Mrs. Posket's 
present anxieties are more than sufficient. Inform 
Cook, and Popham, and the other servants that I 
shall recognise their discretion in the same spirit I 
have already displayed towards you. 

WYKE. 

[With sarcasm .] Thank you, sir. I will. [He pro- 
duces from his waistcoat-pocket a small packet oj 
money done up in newspaper, which he throws down 
upon the table.] Meanwhile, sir, I thought you would 
like to count up the little present of money you gave 
me last night, and in case you thought you'd been 
over-liberal, sir, you might halve the amount. It 
isn't no good spoiling of us all, sir. 
Luce enters. 
MR. POSKET. 

You are an excellent servant, Wyke; I am very 
pleased. I will see you when you return from Lady 
Jenkins's. Be quick. 

WYKE. 

Yes, sir. [To himself] He won't give me twopence 
again in a hurry. 

[He goes out; LUGG is about to follow. 

MR. POSKET. 

Oh, Lugg, I want you to go to the nearest hosier's 
and purchase me a ^eat cravat. 



THE MAGISTRATE. Hf 

LUGG. 

[Looking inquisitively at Mu. POSKET.] A necktie, 
8ir? 

MB. POSKET. 

Yes. [Turning up his coat collar to shield himself 
from LUGG'S gaze.] A necktie a necktie. 

LUGG. 
What sort of a kind of one, sir ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Oh, one like Mr. Wormington's. 

LUGG. 
One like he's wearing this morning, sir ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Of course, of course, of course. 

LUGG. 

[To himself J\ Fancy him being jealous of Mr. 
Wormington, now. Very good, sir what price, sir ? 

MR. POSKET. 

The best. [To himself.] There now, IVo no money. 
[Seeing the packet on table.] Oh, pay for it with this, 



LUGO. 

Yes, sir. 

MR. POSKET. 
And keep the change for your trouble. 



Ii8 THE MAGISTRATE. 

LUGG. 

Thank you, sir; thank you, sir very much obliged tr 
you, sir. \To himself J\ That's like a liberal gentleman. 
[LuGG goes out as MR. WORMINGTON enters 
through the curtains with the charge sheet 
in his hand. MR. WORMINGTON, on seeing 
MR. POSKET, uneasily tucks his pocket- 
handkerchief in his collar so as to hide his 
necktie. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 
H'm ! Good morning. 

MR, POSKET. 
Good morning, Wormington. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 
The charge sheet. 

ME. POSKET. 
Sit down. 

[MR. WORMINGTON puts on his spectacles ; 
MR. POSKET also attempts to put on his 
spectacles, but hurts the bridge of his nose, 
wince$ t and desists. 

MR. POSKET. 

[To himself.] My nose is extremely painful. [To 
MR. WORMINGTON.] You have a bad cold I am afraid, 
Wormington bronchial ? 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Ahem ! Well ah the fact is you may have 
noticed how very chilly the nights are. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 119 

ME. PoSKET. 
Very, very. 

MB. WORMINGTON. 

The only way to maintain the circulation is to run 
as fast as one can. 

MR. POSKET 
To run as fast as one can yes quite so. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

[To himself, looking at MR. POSKET'S shirt front.] 
How very extraordinary he is wearing no cravat 
whatever 1 

MR. POSKET. 

[Buttoning up his coat to avoid MR. WORMINGTON/S 
gaze.] Anything important this morning ? 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Nothing particular after the first charge, a serious 
business arising out of the raid on the " Hotel dea 
Princes." 

MR. POSKET. 
[Starting.] " Hotel des Princes?" 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Inspector Messiter found six persons supping there 
at one o'clock this morning. Two contrived to escape 

MR. POSKET. 
Dear me I am surprised I mean, did they ? 



lie THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. WOKMINGTON. 

B at they left their overcoats behind them, and it is 
believed they will be traced. 

MB. POSKET. 

Oh, do you do you think it is worth while ? The 
police have a great deal to occupy them just now. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

But surely if the police see their way to capture 
anybody we had better raise no obstacle. 

MR. POSKET. 
No no quite so never struck me. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

[Referring to charge sheet.] The remaining four it 
was found necessary to take into custody. 

MR. POSKET. 

Good gracious ! What a good job the other two 
didn't wait. I beg your pardon I mean you say 
we have four ? 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Yes, on the charge of obstructing the police. The 
first assault occurred in the supper-room the second 
in the four-wheeled cab on the way to the station. 
There were five persons in the cab at the time the 
two women, the two men, and the Inspector. 

MR. POSKET. 

Dear me, it must have been a very complicated 
assault. Who are the unfortunate people ? 



THE MAGISTRATE. t*t 

MR. WORMIXGTON. 

The men are of some position. [Reading.] "Alexander 
Lukyn, Colonel" 

MR. POSKET. 

Lukyn ! I I know Colonel Lukyn ; we are old 
schoolfellows. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Very sad ! [Reading.] The other is " Horace, tkc. (fee. 
Vale Captain Shropshire Fusiliers." 

MR. POSKET. 
And the ladies ? 

Mr. WORMTXGTON. 

Call themselves, " Alice Emmeline Fitzgerald and 
Harriet Macnamara." 

MR. POSKET. 

[To himself.] Which is the lady who was under the 
table with me ? 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

They are not recognised by the police at present, 
but they furnish incorrect addresses, and then- 
demeanour is generally violent and unsatisfactory. 

MR. POSKET. 
[To himself.] Who pinched me Alice or Harriet ? 

Mr. WORMINGTON. 

I mention this case because it seems to be one 
calling for const stringent measures. 



122 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKET. 

Wouldn't a fine, and a severe warning from the 
Bench, to the two persons who have got away 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

I think not. Consider, Mr. Posket, not only defy- 
ing the licensing laws, but obstructing the police ! 

MR. POSKET. 

That's true it is hard, when the police are doing 
anything, that they should be obstructed. 

LUGG enters. 

LUGG. 

[Attempting to conceal some annoyance.] Your neck- 
tie, sir. 

MR. POSKET. 
S-ssh! 

MR. WORMINGTON. 
[To himself. J Then he came without one dear me ! 

LUGG. 

[Clapping down a paper parcel on the table] As 
near like Mr. Worrnington's as possible brighter if 
anything. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Opening the parcel, and finding a very common, 
gaudy neckkerchief.] Good gracious ! What a horrible 
affair ! 

LUGG. 

According to my information, sir like Mr. Wor 
mington's. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 12^ 

MR. POSKET. 

Mr. Wormington would never be seen in such an 
nbominable colour. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Well really I [Removing the handkerchief from 
kis throat.] I am extremely sorry. 

MR. POSKET. 
My dear Wormington I 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

I happen to be wearing something similar the first 
time for five-and-twenty years. 

MR. POSKET. 

Oh, I beg your pardon. [To himself.] Everything 
seems against me. 

LUGG. 

One-and-nine it come to, sir. [Producing the paper 
packet of money and laying it upon the table] And I 
brought back all the money you gave me, thinking 
you'd like to look over it quietly. Really, sir, I never 
showed up smaller in any shop in all my life! 

MR. POSKET. 

Upon my vrord. First one and then another! 
What is wrong with the money. [Opens the packet] 
Twopence ! [To himself] That man Wyke will tell 
a 11 to Agatha ! Oh, everything is against me. 

[LuGG has opened the door, taken a card from 
some one outside, and handed it to 

MR. WORMINUTOX. 



124 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. WOIIMINGTON. 

From cell No. 3. [Handing the card to MR. POSKET. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Reading.] " Dear Posket, for the love of goodness 
see me before the sitting of the Court. Alexander 
Lukyn." Poor dear Lukyn ! What on earth shall I 
do? 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Such a course would be most unusual. 

MR. POSKET. 

Everything is unusual. Your cravat is unusual. 
This prisoner is invited to dine at my house to-day 
that's peculiar. He is my wife's first husband's only 
child's god-father that's a little out of the ordinary. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 
The charge is so serious ! 

MR. POSKET. 

But I am a man as well as a magistrate, advise me, 
Wormington, advise me ! 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Well you can apply to yourself for permission to 
grant Colonel Lukyn's request. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Hastily scribbling on LUKYN'S card.] I do I do 
and after much conflicting argument I consent to see 
Colonel Lukyn here, immediately. [Handing the card 
to MR. WORMINGTON who passes it to LUGG, who Uten 



THE MAGISTRATE. 125 

goes out] Don't leave me, Wormington you must 
stand by me to see that I remain calm, firm, and 
judicial. [He hastily puts on the red necktie in an un- 
tidy manner.] Poor Lukyn, I must sink the friend in 
the magistrate, and in dealing with his errors apply 
the scourge to myself. [To MR. WORMINGTON.] Wor- 
mington, tap me on the shoulder when I am inclined 
to be more than usually unusual. 

[Mn. WORMIXGTON stands behind him, and 
LUGG enters with LUKYN. LUKYN 's dress- 
clothes are much soiled and disordered, and 
he, too, has a small strip of plaster upon 
the bridge of his nose. There is a con- 
strained pause, LUKYX and MR. POSKET 
both cough. 

LUKYN. 

[To himself.] Poor Posket 1 

MR. POSKET. 

[To himself.] Poor Lukyn I 
LUKYN. 

[To himself] I suppose he has been sitting up for 
his wife all night, poor devil ! [To Mil. POSKET.] 
Ahem ! How are you, Posket ? 

[MR. WORMIXGTON touches Mil. POSKET'S 
shoulder. 

MR. POSKET. 

I regret to see you in this terrible position, Colonel 
Lukyn 



'.26 THE MAGISTRATE. 

LUKYN. 

By George, old fellow, I regret to find myself in it. 
[Sitting, and taking up newsjiaper.] I suppose they've 
got us in the " Times," confound 'em ! 

[While LUKYN is reading the paper, MR. Pos- 
KET and MR. WORMINGTON hold a hurried 
consultation respecting LUKYN'S befiaviour. 

MR. POSKET. 

H'm ! [To LUGG.] Sergeant, I think Colonel 
Lukyn may be accommodated with a chair. 

LUGG. 
He's in it sir. 

LUKYN. 

[Rising and putting down paper.] Beg your pardon, 
forgot where I was. I suppose everything must be 
formal in this confounded place ? 

MR. POSKET. 

I am afraid, Colonel Lukyn, it will be necessary 
even here to preserve strictly our unfortunate relative 
positions. [LUKYN bows] Sit down. [LUKYN sits 
again.] [POSKET takes up the charge sheet.] Colonel 
Lukyn I In addressing you now, I am speaking, not 
as a man, but, as an instrument of the law. As a man 
I may, or may not, be a weak, vicious, despicable 
creature. 

LUKYN. 
Certainly of course. 

MR. POSKET. 

But, as a magistrate I am bound to say you fill me 
with pain and astonishment. 



THE MAGISTRATE. i2f 

LUKYN. 

Quite right every man to his trade, go on, Posket. 
MR. POSKET. 

[Turning his chair to face LUKYN.] Alexander 
Lukyn when I look at you when I look at 

you [He attempts to put on his spectacles.] 

A.h my nose. [To LUKYN.] I say, when I look at 
you, Alexander Lukyn, I confront a most mournful 
spectacle. A military officer, trained in the ways of 
discipline and smartness, now, in consequence of his 
own misdoings, lamentably bruised and battered, 
shamefully disfigured by plaster, with his apparel 
soiled and damaged all terrible evidence of a conflict 
with that power of which I am the representative. 

LUKYN. 

[Turning his chair to face MR. POSKET.] Well, 
Posket, if it comes to that, when I look at you, when 
I look at you [He attempts to fix his glass in his eyeJ\ 
Confound my nose ! [To MR. POSKET.] When I look 
at you, you are not a very imposing object, this 
morning. 

MR. POSKET. 
Lukyn! 

LUKYN. 

You look quite as shaky as I do and you're not 
quite innocent of court plaster. 

MR. POSKET. 
Lukyn I Really 1 

LUKYN. 

And as for our attire, we neither of us look as if 
we had slipped out of a bandbox. 



120 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKET. 

Don't, Lukyn, don't ! Pray respect my legal 
status ! [Mil. WORMINGTON leads MR. POSKET, who 
has risen, back to his seat.] Thank you, Wormington. 
Alexander Lukyn, I have spoken. It remains for 
you to state your motive in seeking this painful 
interview. 

LUKYN. 

Certainly ! H'm ! You know, of course, that I 
am not alone in this affair ? 

MR. POSKET. 

[Referring to charge sheet.] Three persons appear 
to be charged with you. 

LUKYN. 

Yes. Two others got away. Cowards ! If ever I 
find them, I'll destroy them ! 

MR. POSKET. 
Lukyn ! 

LUKYN. 
I will ! Another job for you, Posket. 

MR. POSKET. 

[With dignity.] I beg your pardon, in the event of 
such a deplorable occurrence, I should not occupy my 
present position. Go on, sir. 

LUKYN. 

Horace Vale and I are prepared to stand the brunt 
of our misdeeds. But, Posket, there are ladies in the 



THE MAGISTRATE. 129 

MR. POSKET. 

In the annals of the Mulberry Street Police Court 
such a circumstance is not unprecedented. 

LUKYN. 

Two helpless, forlorn ladies. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Referring to charge sheet.} Alice Emmeline Fitz- 
gerald and Harriet Macnamara. Oh, Lukyn, Lukyn ! 

LUKYN. 

Pooh ! I ask no favour for myself or Vale, but I 
come to you, Posket, to beg you to use your power to 
release these two ladies without a moment's delay. 

[MR. WORMIXGTON touches MB. POSKET'S 
shouM.er. 

MR. POSKET. 

Upon my word, Lukyn 1 Do you think I am to be 
undermined ? 

LUKYN. 

Undermine the devil, sir ! Don't talk to me ! Let 
these ladies go, I say ! Don't bring them into Court, 
don't see their faces don't hear their voices if you 
do, you'll regret it ! 

MR. POSKET. 

Colonel Lukyn 1 

LUKYX. 

[Leaninff across the table and gripping MR. POSKET 
by the shoulder} Posket, do you know that one of 
these ladies is a married lady ? 



130 THE MAGISTRATE 

MB. POSKET. 
Of course I don't, sir. I blush to hear it. 

LUKYN. 

And do you know that from the moment this 
married lady steps into your confounded Court, the 
happiness, the contentment of a doting husband, 
become a confounded wreck and ruin ? 

MR. POSKET. 

Then, sir, let it be my harrowing task to open the 
eyes of this foolish doting man to the treachery, the 
perfidy, which nestles upon his very hearthrug 1 

LUKYN. 

Oh, lor'l Be careful, Posket! By George, be 
careful ! 

MB. POSKET. 

Alexander Lukyn, you are my friend. Amongst 
the personal property taken from you when you 
entered these precincts may have been found a 
memorandum of an engagement to dine at my house 
to-night at a quarter to eight o'clock. But, Lukyn, 
I solemnly prepare you, you stand in danger of being 
Jate for dinner ! I go further I am not sure, after 
this morning's proceedings, that Mrs. Posket will be 
ready to receive you. 

LUKYN. 
I'm confoundedly certain she won't / 

MB. POSKET. 

Therefore, Lukyn, as an English husband and 
father it will be my duty *<* teach you and your 



THE MAGISTRATE. 131 

disreputable companions [referring to charge-sheet], 
Alice Emmeline Fitzgerald and Harriet Macnamara, 
some rudimentary notions of propriety and decorum. 

LUKYN. 

Confound you, Posket listen I 

Mil. POSKET. 

I am listening, sir, to the guiding voice of 
Mrs. Posket that newly-made wife still blushing 
from the embarrassment of her second marriage, and 
that voice says, " Strike for the sanctity of hearth and 
home, for the credit of the wives of England no 
mercy ! " 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

It is time to go into Court, sir. The charge against 
Colonel Lukyn is first on the list. 

LUKYN. 

Posket, I'll give you one last chance 1 If I write 
upon a scrap of paper the real names of these two 
unfortunate ladies, will you shut yourself up for a 
moment, away from observation, and read these names 
before you go into Court ? 

MR. POSKET. 

Certainly not, Colonel Lukyn ! I cannot be 
influenced by private information in dealing with an 
offence which is, in my opinion, as black as as my 
cravat ! Aliem ! 

[Mil. WORMINGTON and MR. POSKET look at 
each other's necktie and turn up thur 
cottar* hastily. 



32 THE MAGISTRATE. 

LUKYN. 

[To himself.] There's no help for it. [To MR. POSKET.] 
Then Posket, you must have the plain truth where 
you stand, oy George ! The two ladies who are my 
companions in this affair are 

MR. POSKET. 

Sergeant 1 Colonel Lukyn will now join his party. 
[Luce steps up to LUKYN sharply. 

LUKYN. 
[Soiling with indignation] What, sir? What? 

Mil. POSKET. 

Lukyn, I think wo both have engagements will 
you excuse mo ? 

LUKYN. 

Posket ! You've gone too far ! If you went down 
on your knees, which you appear to have been recently 
doing, and begged the names of these two ladies, you 
shouldn't have 'em ! No sir, by George, you shouldn't. 

MR. POSKET. 
Good morning, Colonel Lukyn. 

LUKYN. 

You've lectured me, pooh-poohed me, snubbed me 
a soldier, sir a soldier ! But when I think of your 
dinner-party to-night, with my empty chair, like 
Banquo, by George, sir and the chief dish composed 
of a well-browned, well-basted, family skeleton, served 
up under the best silver cover, I pity you, Posket ! 
Good morning I [Uv marchts out with LUGG, 



THE MAGISTRATE. 133 

ME. POSKET. 

Ah ! Thank goodness that ordeal is passed. Now, 
Wormington, I think I am ready to face tho duties of 
the day 1 Shall we go into Court ? 

MR. WORMINGTON. 
Certainly, sir. 

[MR. WORMINGTON gathers up papers Jrvm 
the table. MR. POSKET with a shaking 
hand pours out water from, carafe and 
drinks. 

MR. POSKET. 

My breakfast. [To MR. WORMINGTON.] I hope I 
defended the sanctity of the Englishman's hearth, 
Wormington ? 

MR. WORMINGTON. 
You did, indeed. As a married man, I thank you. 

MR, POSKET. 

Give me your arm, Wormington ! I am not very 
well this morning, and this interview with Colonel 
Lnkyn has shaken me. I think your coat-collar is 
turned up, Wormington. 

Mn. WORMIXGTON. 
So is yours, I fancy, air. 



\J 



134 THE MAGISTRATE. 

Mil. PoSKBT. 
Ahem ! 

[They turn their collars down, MR. POSKET 
takes MR. WORMINGTON'S arm. They are 
going towards the curtains when WYKB 
enters hurriedly at the door. 

WYKE. 
Excuse me, sir. 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Hush 1 hush ! Mr. Posket is just going into 
Court. 

WYKE. 

Lady Jenkins has sent me back to tell you that she 
hasn't seen the missis for the last week or more. 

MR. POSKET. 

Mrs. Posket went to Campden Hill with Miss 
Verrinder last night ! 

WYKE. 
They haven't arrived there, sir. 

MR. POSKET. 
Haven't arrived ! 

WYKE. 

No sir and even a slow four-wheeler won't account 
for that. 

MR. POSKET. 

Wormington ! there's something wrong ! Mrs. 
Posket quitted a f airly happy home last night and has 
not been seen or heard of since I 



THE MAGISTRATE. 135 

ME. WOKMINGTON. 

Pray don't be anxious, siiy the Court is waiting. 

MR. POSKET. 

But I am anxious ! Tell Sergeant Lugg to look 
over the Accident-Book, this morning's Hospital Re- 
turns, List of Missing Children, Suspicious Pledges 
People left Chargeable to the Parish, Attend to your 

Window Fastenings ! I I Wormington, Mrs. 

Posket and I disagreed last night. 

ME. WOEMINGTON. 

Don't think of it, sir ! you should hear me aad 
Mrs. Wormington ! Pray do come into Court. 

ME. POSKET. 

Court 1 I'm totally unfit for business ! totally unfit 
for business I 

[ME. WOEMINGTON hurries him off through 
the curtains. LUGG enters, almost breath- 
less. 

LUGG. 

We've got charge one in the Dock all four of 'em. 
[Seeing WYKE.] Hallo ! you back again ! 

WYKE. 

Yes seems so. \They stand facing each other, dab- 
bing their foreheads with their handkerchiefs .] Phew' 
you seem warm. 

LUGG. 

Phew ! you don't seem so cool. 



1 36 THE MAGISTRATE. 

WYKE. 
I've been lookin' after two ladies. 

LUGO. 
So have I. 

WYKE. 
I haven t found 'em. 

LUGO. 

If I'd known, I'd a been pleased to lend you our twe. 
[From the other side of the curtains there is 
the sound of a shriek from AGATHA POSKET 
and CHARLOTTE. 

WYKE. 
Lor' ! what's that ! 

LUGG. 

That is our two. Don't notice them they're hys- 
bericals. They're mild now to what they have been. 
I say, old fellow is your guv'nor all right in his 
held? 

WYKE. 
I suppose so why ? 

LUGG. 

I've a partickler reason for asking. Does he ever 
tell you to buy him anything and keep the change ? 

WYKE. 

What d'yer mean ? 

LUGG. 

Well, does he ever come down handsome for your 
extry exertion do you ever get any tips ? 



THE MAGISTRATE. 137 

WYKE. 

Rather. What do you think he made me a present 
of last night ? 

LUGO. 

Don't know. 

WYKE. 
Twopence to buy a new umbrella. 

LUGG. 

Well, I'm blessed ! And he gave me the same sum 
to get him a silk necktie. It's my opinion he's got a 
softening of the brain [Another shriek from the two 
women, a cry from MR. POSKET, and then a hubbub are 
heard. Running up to ilie curtains and looking 
through.] Hallo ! what's wrong ? Here I I told you 
so he's broken out, he's broken out. 

WYKE. 
Who's broken out ? 

LUGO. 

The lunatic. Keep back, I'm wanted, [He goes 
through the curtains.] 

WYKE. 

[Looking after him.] Look at the guv'nor waving 
his arms and going on anyhow at the prisoners! 
Prisoners ! Gracious goodness it's the missis ! 

[Amid a confused sound of voices MR. POSKET 
is brought in, through the curtains, by 

MR. WORMTNGTON. LUGG follows. 



138 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKET. 

Wormington ! Wormington ! the two ladies ! the 
two ladies ! I know them ! 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

It's all right, sir, it's all right don't be upset, 
sir! 

MR. POSKET. 

I'm not well ; what shall I do ? 
MR. WORMINGTON. 

Nothing further, sir. What you have done is quite 
in form. 

MR. POSKET. 

What I have done ? 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Yes, sir you did precisely what I suggested took 
the words from me. They pleaded guilty. 

MR. POSKET. 
Guilty! 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Yes, sir and you sentenced them. 

% 

MR. POSKET. 
Sentenced them ! The ladies ! 

MR. WORMINGTON. 

Yes, sir. You've given them seven days, without 
the option of a fine. 

[MR. POSKET collapses into MR. WORMINO- 
TON'S arms. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 



THE SECOND SCENE. 

The scene changes to MR. POSKET'S drawing-room, 
as in the first act. 

BEATIE enters timidly, dressed in simple 
walking -costume. 

BEATIE. 

How dreadfully early. Eleven o'clock, and I'm 
not supposed to come till four. I wonder why I 
want to instruct Cis all day. I'm not nearly so 
enthusiastic about the two little girls I teach in 
.Russell Square. 

POPHAM enters. Her eyes are red as if from crying. 

POPHAM. 

[Drawing back on seeing BEATIE.] That music 
person again. I beg your pardon I ain't got no 
instructions to prepare no drawing-room for no 
lessons till four o'clock. 

BEATIE. 
I wish to see Mrs. Posket. 

POPHAM. 
She hasn't come home. 

BEATIK. 
Oh then er um Master Farringdon will do. 



140 THE MAGISTRATE. 

POPHAM. 
[In tears.] He haven't coine home either I 

BEATIE. 
Oh, where is be ? 

POPHAM. 

No one knows ! His wicked old stepfather took 
him out late last night and hasn't returned him. 
Such a night as it was, too, and him still wearing hie 
summer under-vests. 

BEATIE. 
Mr. Posket ? 

POP HAM. 
Mr. Posket no, my Cis ! 

BKATIE. 

How dare you speak of Master Farringdon in that 
familiar way ? 

POPIJAM. 

How dare I? Because me and him formed an 
attachment before ever you darkened our doors. 
[Taking a folded printed paper from Tier pocket.] You 
may put down the iron 'eel too heavy, Miss Tomlin- 
son. I refer you to Bow Bells " First Love is Best 
Love; or, The Earl's Choice." 

[^5 POPHAM offf.ru the paper, Cis enters, look- 
-yig very pale^ worn-out, and dishevelled. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 141 

POPIIAM AND BEATIE. 
Oh! 

Cis. 

[Staggering to a chair.] Where's the mater ? 

FOPIIAM. 
Not home yet. 

Cis. 
Thank giminy ! 

BEATIE. 
He's ill 1 

POPIIAM. 
Oh! 

[BEATIE, assisted by POPHAM, quickly wheels 
the large armchair forward, they catch 
hold of Cis and place him in it, he sub- 
mits limply. 

BEATIE. 

[Taking Cis's hand.] What is the matter, Cia 
dear ? Tell Beatio. 

POPTTAM. 

[Taking his other hand.] Well, I'm sure ! Who's 
given you raisins and ketchup from the store cup- 
board ? (Jome back to Emma ! 

[Cis, with his eyes closed, gives a murmur. 

BEATIE. 
He's whispering ! 

[They both bob their heads down to listen. 



142 THE MAGISTRATE 

POPHAM. 
He says his head's a-whirling. 

BEATIE. 
Put him on the sofa. 

[They take off his boots, loosen his necktie, 
and dab his forehead with water out oj a 
Jlower-vase. 

Cis. 
I I I wish you two girls would leave off. 

BEATIE. 

He's speaking again. He hasn't had any break- 
fast ! He's hungry ! 

POPIIAM. 

Hungry ! I thought he looked thin ! Wait a 
minute, dear! Emma Popham knows what her boy 
fancies ! \81ie runs out of the room. 

Cis. 

Oh, Beatie, hold my head while I ask you some- 
thing. 

BEATIE. 
Yes, darling! 

Cis. 

No lady would marry a gentleman who had been a 
convict, would she ? 

BEATIE, 
No ; certainly not 1 



THE MAGISTRATE. Tf3 

Ois. 

I thought not ! Well, Beatie, I've been run after 
by a policeman. 

BEATIE. 
[Leaving him.] Oh ! 

Cis. 

Not caught, you know, only run after ; and, walk- 
ing home from Hendon this morning, I came to the 
conclusion that I ought to settle down in life. Beatie 
could I write out a paper promising to marry you 
when I'm one-and-twenty ? 

BEATIE. 
Don't be a silly boy of course you could. 

Cis. 

Then I shall ; and when I feel inclined to have a 
spree, I shall think of that paper and say, " Cis Far- 
ringdon, if you ever get locked up, you'll lose the most 
beautiful girl in the world." 

BEATIE, 
And so you will. [lie goes to the writing-table* 

Cis. 

I'd better write it now, before iny head gets well 
again. \He writes / she bends over him. 

BEATIE. 

You simple, foolish, Cis ! If your head is so queer, 
shall I tell you what to say ? 



M1 THE MAGISTRATE. 

POPIIAM enters, carrying a tray with breakfast dishes. 

POPHAM. 

[To herself.] He won't think so much of Jier now. 
His breakfast is my triumph. [To Ois.] Coffee, bacon, 
and a teacake. 

BEATIB. 

Hush ! Master Farringdon is writing something 
very important. 

POPIIAM. 
[Going to the window.] That's a cab at our door. 

Cis. 
It must be the mater I'm off! 

[He picks up his boots and goes out quickly. 

BEATIE. 

[Following him with the paper and inkstand] Cis ! 
Cis ! You haven't finished the promise ! You 
haven't finished the promise ! 

LUGG. 

[If card outside] All right, sir I've got you I've 
got you. [POPHAM opens the door. 

POPIIAM. 

The master and a policeman ! [Luco enters sup- 
porting MR. POSKET who sinks into an armchair with 
a fjroanJ] Oh, what's the matter ? 



THE MAGISTRATE. MS 

LuGG. 

All right, my good girl, you rim downstairs and 
fetch a drop of brandy and water. 

MR. POSKET. 
[Hurrying out.] Oh! 

Luce. 

Now don't take on so, sir. It's what might hnppcn 
to any married gentleman. Now, you're all right 
now, sir. And I'll hurry back to the Court to beo 
whether they've sent for Mr. Bullamy. 

Mu. POSKET. 
My wife ! My wife ! 

LUGG. 

Oh, come now, sir, what is seven days ! Why 
many a married gentleman in your position, sir, 
would have been glad to have made it fourteen. 

MR. POSKET. 

Go away leave me. 

LUGO. 

Certainly, sir. [PoniAM re-enters with a small 
tumbler of brandy and water ; he takes it from htr 
and drinks it.] It's not wanted. I'm thankful to 
say he's better. 

PorriAir. 

[To LUGG.] If you please, cook presents her compli- 
ments, and she would be glad of the pleasure of your 
company downstairs, before Icavin'. [They go out. 




Ii5 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKET. 

Agatha and Lukyn 1 Agatha and Lukyn cupping 
together at the Hotel des Princes, while I was at 
home and asleep while I ought to have been at home 
and asleep ! It's awful ! 

Cis. 
[Looking in at the door and entering.] Hallo, Guv ! 

MR. POSKET. 
[Starting up.] Cis 1 

Cis. 
Where did you fetch, Guv ? 

MR. POSKET. 

Where did I fetch ! You wretched boy ! I fetched 
Kilburn, and I'll fetch you a sound whipping when I 
recover my composure. 

Cis. 

What for? 

MR. POSKET. 

For leading me astray, sir. Yours is the first bad 
tompanionship I have ever formed ! Evil communi- 
cation with you, sir, has corrupted me ! [Taking Cis 
by the cottar and shaking him.] Why did you abandon 
me at Kilburn ? 

Cis. 

Because you were quite done, and I branched ofT to 
drfcw the crowd away from you after me. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 147 

MR. POSKET. 

Did you, Cis, did you ? [Putting his hand on Cis's 
shoulder.] My boy my boy ! Oh, Cis, we're in such 
trouble ! 

Cis. 

You weren't caught, Guv ? 

MR. POSKET. 

No but do you know who the ladies are who 
were supping at the Hotel des Princes? 

Cis. 
No do you ? 

MR. POSKET. 

Do I ? They were your mother and Aunt Char- 
lotte. 

Cis. 

The mater and Aunt Charlotte ! Ha, ha, ha ! 
[Lcvughiny and dancing ivith delight.] Ha ! ha ! Oh, 
I say, Guv, what a lark ! 

Mil. POSKET. 
A lark ! They were taken to the police station 1 

Cis. 
[Changing his lone.] My mother? 

MR. POSKET. 

They were brought before the magistrate and sen- 
tenced. 

Cis. 

Sentenced ? 



MS THE MAGISTRATE. 

Mil. POSKET. 
To seven days' imprisonment. 

Cis. 
Oh ! [fie puts Jus hat on fiercely. 

MR. POSKET. 

What are you going to do ? 
Cis. 

Get my mother out first, and then break every bone 
in that magistrate's body. 

MR. POSKET. 

Cis ! Cis ! he's an unhappy wretch and he did his 
duty. 

Cis. 

His duty! To send another magistrate's wife to 
prison ! Guv, I'm only a boy, but I know what 
professional etiquette is! Come along! Which is 
the police station ? 

Mil. POSKCT. 

Mulberry Street. 

Cis. 
Who's the magistrate ? 

MR. POSKET. 
I am ! 

Cis. 

You ! [Seizing MR. POSKET l)y the collar and shak- 
ing him.] You dare to lock up my mother ! Come 
with me and get her out ! 

[He is dragging Mu. POSKET towards the 
door, when MK. BUI.LAMY enters breath- 
lessly. 



THd MAGISTRATE, 149 

Ma. BULLAMY, 
My dear Posket ! 

Cis. 

[Seizing MR. BULLAMY a?ul dragging him with MR 
POSKET to the door.] Come with me and get my 
mother out. 

MR. BULLAMY. 
Leave me alone, sir ! Shg is out 1 I managed it. 

MR. POSKET AND Ois. 
[Together.] How ? 

MR. BULLAMY. 

Wormington sent to me when you were taken ill. 
When I arrived at the Court, he had discovered, from 
your man-servant, Mrs. Posketfs awful position. 

Cis. 
You leave my mother alone ! Go on ! 

MR. BULLAMY. 

Said I to myself, " This won't do, I must extricate 
these people somehow ! " [To MR. POSKET.] I'm net 
eo damned conscientious as you are, Posket. 

Cis. 
Bravo ! Go on ! 

MR. BULLAMY. 

[Producing his jujube box.] The first thin^ I did 
was to take a jujubo. 



r 50 THE- MA GISTRA TB. 

CIS. 

[Snatching t\e jujube box from him.] Will you make 
haste? 

MR. BULLAMY. 

Then said I to Wormington, " Posket was non com- 
pos mentis when he heard this case I'm going to 
re-open the matter ! 

Cis. 
Hurrah 1 * 

MR. BULLAMY. 

And I did ! And what do you think I found out 
from the proprietor of the hotel 1 

MR. POSKET AND Cis. 
What? 

MR. BULLAMY. 

That this young scamp, Mr. Cecil Farringdon, hires 
a room at the " Hotel des Princes." 

Cis. 
I know that. 

MR. BULLAMY. 

And that Mr. Fairingdon was there last night with 
some low stockbroker of the name of Skinner. 

Cis. 

Go on go on ! [Offering him the jujube box.] 
Take a jujuhe 1 



THE MAGISTRATE. 151 

MR. BULLASIY. 

\Takiwj a jujube.] Now the law, which seems to 
me quite perfect, allows a man who rents a little 
apartment at an inn to eat and drink with his friends 
all night long. 

Cis. 
Well ? 

MR. BULLAMY. 

So said I from the bench, " These ladies and gentle- 
men appear to be friends or relatives of a certain 
lodger in the * Hotel des Princes.' " 

Cis. 

So they are I 

MR. BOLLAMY. 

"They were all discovered in one FOOJB>* 

MR. POSKET. 
So we were I mean, so they were I 

MR. BULLAMY. 

" And I shall adjourn the case for a week to give 
Mr. Farringdon an opportunity of claiming these 
people as his guests." 

Cis. 
Three cheers for Bullamy. 

MR. BULLAMY. 

So I censured the police for their interference a^ 
released the ladies on their own recognisances. 



152 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. POSKET. 
[Taking MR. BULLAMY'S hand.] And the men ? 

MR. BULLAMY. 

Well, unfortunately, Wormington took upon him- 
self to despatch the men to the House of Correction 
before I arrived. 

MR. POSKET. 

I'm glad of it ! They are dissolute villains ! I'm 
glad of it. 

POPHAM enters. 

POPHAM. 

Oh, sir ! Here's the missis and Miss Verrinder ! 
In such a plight ! 

Cis. 
The mater ! Guv, you explain ! 

[He hurries out. MR. POSKET rapiffyy retires 
into the window recess. AGATHA POSKET 
and CHARLOTTE enter, pale, red-eyed, and 
agitated. POPHAM goes out. 

AGATHA POSKET AND CHARLOTTE. 
[Falling on to MR. BULLAMY'S shoulders.} o 
h h! 

MR, BULLAMY. 
My dear ladies ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Preserver 1 

CHARLOTTE. 
Friend ! 



THE MAGISTRATE ij* 

AGATHA POSKET. 
How is my boy ? 

MH. BULLA.MY. 
Never better. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

And the man who condemned his wife and sister 
in-law to the miseries of a jail ! 

Mu. BULLAMY. 

Ahem ! Posket oh he 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Is he well enough to be told what that wife thinks 
of him ? 

MR. Bt'LLAMT. 

It might cause a relapse ! 

AGATHA POSR^*. 
It is my duty to risk that. 

CHARLOTTE. 

[liaising the covers of the dishes on the table.] Food .' 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Ah! 

[AGATHA POSKET and CHARLOTTE begin to 
devour a teacake voraciously. 

MR. POSKET. 

[Advancing with an attempt at dignity.] Agatha 
Posket. 



154 THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

[Rising ) with her mouth full, and a piece of teacake 
in her hand.] Sir ! 

[CHARLOTTE takes the tray and everything on 
it from the table and goes towards the door. 

MR. BULLAMY. 

[Going to the door.] There's going to be an explana- 
tion. 

CHARLOTTE. 

[At the door] There's going to be an explanation. 
[CHARLOTTE and MR. BULLAMY go out quietly. 

MR. POSKET. 
How dare you look me in the face, madam ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

How dare you look at anybody in any position, 
sir? You send your wife to prison for pushing a 
mere policeman. 

MR. POSKET. 
I didn't know what I was doing. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Not when you requested two ladies to raise their 
veils and show their faces in the dock? We shouldn't 
have been discovered but for that. 

MR. POSKET. 
It was my duty. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 155 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Duty ! Y-ou don't go to the police court again 
alone ! I guess now, 2ftneas Posket, why you clung 
to a single life so long You liked it! 

Mn. POSKET. 
I wish I had. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Why didn't you marry till you were fifty ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Perhaps I hadn't met a widow, madam. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Paltry excuse. You revelled in a dissolute bachelor- 
hood! 

MR. POSKET. 
Hah ! Whist every evening ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

You can't play whist alone. You're an expert at 
hiding too ! 

MR. POSKET. 
If I were I should thrash your boy ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

When you wished to conceal yourself last night, you 
selected a table with a lady under it. 

MR. POSKET. 
Ah, did you pinch me, or did C) arlotte ? 



156 THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATHA .POSKET. 
I did Charlotte's a single girl, 

MR. POSKET. 

1 fancy, madam, you found my conduct under that 
table perfectly respectful ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 
I don't know I was too agitated to notice. 

MR. POSKET. 
Evasion you're like all the women. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Profligate ! You oughtn't to know that ! 

MR. POSKET. 

No wife of mine sups, unknown to me, with disso- 
lute military men; we will have a judicial separation, 
Mrs. Posket. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Certainly I suppose you'll manage that at your 
police court, too ? 

MR. POSKET. 
I shall send for my solicitor at onco. 

AGATIIA POSKET. 

^Eneas ! Mr. Poskrt ! Whatever happens, you 
shall not have the custody of my boy. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 157 

Mil. POSKET. 

Your boy I /take charge of him ? Agatha Poskot, 
he has been my evil genius ! He has made me a 
gambler at an atrocious game, called " Fireworks " he 
has tortured my mind with abstruse speculations con- 
cerning " Sillikin " and " Butterscotch " for the St 
Leger he has caused me to cower before servants, 
and to fly before the police. 

AGATIIA POSKET. 
He! My Cis? 

Cis enters having cJumged his clothe*. 

Cis. 
\llrcezilyl\ Hallo, mater got back ? 

AGATIIA POSKET. 



You wicked boy ! You dare to have apartments at 
the "Hotel des Princes!" 

Mu. POSKET. 

Yes and it was to put a stop to that which 
induced me to go to Meek Street last night. 

Cis. 

Don't be angry, mater ! I've got you out of your 
difficulties. 

MR. POSKET. 
But you got me into mine ! 

Cis. 

Well, I know 1 did one can't be always doing the 
right thing ! It isn't Guv's fault there ! 



f5 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. PoSKET. 
Swear it ! 

AGATHA POSKET. 

No, he doesn't know the nature of an oath ! 1 
believe him ! ^Eneas, I see now, this is all the result 
D a lack of candour on my part. Tell me, have you 
ever particularly observed this child ? 

ME. POSKET. 
Oh! 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Has it ever struck you he is a little forward ? 

MR. POSKET. 
Sometimes. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

You are wrong ; he is awfully backward. [Taking 
MR. POSKET'S handJ] ./Eneas; men always think they 
are marrying angels, and women would be angels if 
they never had to grow old. That warps their dis- 
positions. I have deceived you, .^Eneas. 

MR. POSKET. 
Ah ! Lukyn I 

AGATHA POSKET. 

No no you don't understand ! Lukyn wr*s my 
boy's godfather in eighteen sixty-six. 

MR. POSKET. 
1866? 

Cis. 
1886? 



7 HE MAGISTRATE. 15$ 

ClS AND MR. POSKET. 

[Together, reckoning rapidly upon their fingers.] 
1886. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

S-s-s h ! Don't count ! Cis, go away ! [To MR. 
POSKET.] When you proposed to me in the " Pan- 
theon " at Spa, you particularly remarked, "Mrs. 
Farringdon, I love you for yourself alone" 

MR. POSKET. 
I know I did. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Those were terrible words to address to a widow 
with a son of nineteen. [Cis and MR. POSKET again 
reckon rapidly upon their fingers.] Don't count, 
^Eneas, don't count ! Those words tempted me. I 
glanced at my face in a neighbouring mirror, and I 
said " -^Eneas is fifty why should I a mere woman, 
compete with him on the question of age ? He has 
already the advantage I will be generous I will 
add to it ! " I led you to believe I had been married 
only fifteen years ago, I deceived you and my boy as 
to his real age, and I told you I was but one-and- 
thirty. 

MR. POSKET. 

[t wasn't the truth ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Ah! I merely lacked woman's commonest fault, 
exaggeration. 

MR. POSKET. 
But Lukyn ? 



60 THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATHA POSKET. 

Knows the real facts. I went to him last night to 
beg him not to disturb an arrangement which had 
brought happiness to all parties. Look. In place of 
a wayward, troublesome child, I now present you 
with a youth old enough to be a joy, comfort, and 
support ! 

Cis. 
Oh, I say, mater, this is a frightful sell fora fellow, 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Go to your room, sir. 

Cis. 

I always thought there was something wrong with 
me. Blessed if I'm not behind the age ! 

[Crs goes out. 
AGATHA POSKET. 



Forgive me, vEneas. Look at my bonnet A 
right in Mulberry Street, without even a powder-pu^ 
is an awful expiation. 

MR. POSKET. 

Agatha ! How do I know Cis won't be five-and 
twenty to-morrow ? 

AGATHA POSKET. 

No no you know the worst, and as long as I 
live, I'll never deceive you again except in little 
things. 

LUKVN and VALE enter. 



THE MAGISTRATE. IT 

LUKYN. 

[Boiling with rac/e.] By George, Posket 1 

MR. POSKET. 
My dear Lukyn ! 

LUKYN. 
Do you know I am a confounded jail-bird, sir? 

MR. POSKET. 
An accident ! 

LUKYN. 

And do you know what has happened to me ic jni.? 
a soldier, sir an officer ? 

MR. POSKET. 
No! 

LUKYN. 
I have been washed by the authorities. 

MR. POSKET. 
Lukyn, no ! 
CHARLOTTE has entered, and she rushes across to VAI.E 

CHARLOTTE. 
Horace 1 Horace 1 Not YOU, too 2 

YALE. 

By Jove, Charlotte, I would have died first. 
MR. BULLAMY enters quickly. 



(52 THE MAGISTRATE. 

MR. BULLAMY. 

Mr. Posket, I shall choke, sir ! Inspector Messitei 
is downstairs and says that Isidore, the waiter, swears 
that you are the man who escaped from Meek Street 
last night. 

LUKYN. 

What ? 

MR. BULLAMY. 
This is a public scandal, sir 1 

LUKYN. 
Your game is up, sir 1 

MR. BULLAMY. 

You have brought a stain upon a spotless police 
court 1 

LUKYN. 
And lectured me upon propriety and decorum. 

MR. POSKET. 

Gentlemen, gentlemen, when you have heard my 
story you will pity me. 

LUKYN AND MR. BULLAMY. 
\Laughing ironically. ~\ Ha! ha! 

Mu. POSKET. 

You will find your old friend a Man, a Martyr, and 
a Magistrate ! 

Cis enters, pulling BEATIE after him. 



THE MAGISTRATE. 163 

ClS. 

Come on, Beaiie ! Guv mater ! here's news 1 
Beatie and I have made up our minds to be married . 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Oh! 

POPHAM enters with champagne and <jlasse* 

Mil. POSKET. 
What's this ? 

Cks. 

Bellinger '74 extra dry to drink our health and 
happiness. 

CHARLOTTE. 
Champagne ! It may save my life 1 

AGATHA POSKET. 
Miss Tomlinson, go home ! 

MB POSKET. 

Stop 1 Cis Farringdon, my dear boy, you are but 
nineteen at present, but you were only fourteen yes- 
terday, so you are a growing lad ; on the day you 
marry and fitart for Canada, I will give you a thousand 
pounds ! 

POPHAM. 
[Putting her apron to her eyes.] Oh ! 

Cis. 

[Embracing BEATIE.] Hurrah ! We'll be married 
directly. 



164 THE MAGISTRATE. 

AGATHA POSKET. 
lie's an infant ! I forbid it ! 

MR. POSKET. 

I am his legal guardian. Gentlemen, bear witness ! 
I solemnly consent to that little wretch's marriage ! 

[AGATHA POSKET sinks into a chair. 



THE END. 



. Printed by BALLANTYNE & COMPANY LTD 
'I'avistock Street Coveiit Garden London 






14 DAY USE 

RETURN TO DESK FROM WHICH BORROWED 

LOAN DEPT. 

RENEWALS ONLY TEL. NO. 642-3405 
This book is due on the last date stamped below, or 

on the date to which renewed. 
Renewed books are subject to immediate recall 






fl 












A.l/\lf f* *r\tir~ 




NOV 6 1969 




OCT 91982 ' 




BB-Cia. APR 2 2 19 


32 


FEB201989 








AUTOOlSUVkBOS '89 





















General Library 



YB 72826 



BERKELEY LIBRARIES