IN THREE ACTS
THE MACMILLAN COMPANY
LONDON : MACMILLAN & CO., LTD.
Dramatic rights reserved
BY THE MACMILLAN COMPANY.
Set up and electrotype*!. Published October, 1905.
J. S. Cashing & Co. Berwirk & Smith Co.
Norwood, Mass., U.S.A.
THE MARQUIS OF TREDBURY
A young nobleman in finan
Son of " Barking s china."
Railroad President and Cap
tain of Industry.
Lawyer, man of the world.
Reporter on the New York
Store-keeper and sheriff of
EZRA SWAZEY ...... His clerk.
TILDEN ........ Valet to Lord Tredbury.
Butler, footmen, etc.
REGINALD BARKING, M.P.
MR. JOHN BLACKWELL .
MR. LAWRENCE PEPYS .
EDITH BLACKWELL .
LADY MARJORIE TICKNOR.
A modern, strenuous, Ameri
can girl. Incidentally an
Second wife to Mr. Blackwell,
stepmother of Edith.
BALCHVILLE IN THE ADIRONDACKS
SCENE. The Post-office and little general store occupies
half of the rear of the stage, the left side. It is a low,
white building, with a porch and checker-paned windows
on either side of the door, where goods are displayed,
" MANNA BREAKFAST FOOD," etc.
There is a small sign,
and a larger sign over the porch,
" HIRAM PETERS, GENERAL STORE."
There is a sign against the wall of the Post-office, of more
or less permanence and size :
"TIPTON S HOTEL IN THE MOUNTAINS,
ON LAKE REGINA,
EIGHT MILES BY STAGE FROM BALCHVILLE.
GOLFING, FISHING, TENNIS, BOATING.
Z. TIPTON, PROPRIETOR."
There is also a large poster in a conspicuous place adver
"THE BALCHVILLE FAIR,"
with a list of prizes, trotting races, etc. During the act,
the Fair is supposed to be in progress. At various
2 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
intervals, when the action is not interfered with, the boy,
EZRA SWAZEY, appears disconsolately in the doorway
of the store.
In front of the store, in the foreground, is a green, and
around a great pine tree a seat, carved with various
designs and initials. In the Right,, rear, is seen the
landing dock extending into the lake, beyond it the waters,
and in the distance the hills on the farther side. There
is a fringe of trees likewise on the extreme Right rear,
and street is supposed to come in at Right front.
TIME : About 4.30 on an August afternoon, the present day.
AT RISE : The boy, EZRA SWAZEY, is discovered standing
dejectedly on the porch, one hand in his pocket, the other
holding a scoop such as is used for coffee, sugar, etc. In
front of him, on the green, stands HIRAM PETERS him
self, sheriff of Carroll County, a tall, vigorous figure of a
countryman, sunburned, with a shrewd but kindly face.
He has a fringe of gray beard on his chin, but no mus
tache. He wears a blue flannel shirt, trousers tucked
into his boots, a waistcoat, no coat, and a slouch hat.
The waistcoat is unbuttoned, his suspenders in evidence.
On the waistcoat is pinned a shield, the badge of his
(Spitting dejectedly on the green.)
Which hoss won the first heat, Hiram?
What s that feller s name that lives over to
the Centre? Jimson. Don t be cast down,
Ezry, we can t all git to the Fair.
(Looking off, Left.)
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 3
Here comes John Blackwell. When he was
your age he didn t go to no fairs, and now he kin
travel from here to Puget Sound on his own
railroad. Ain t that any comfort?
(Enter, Left, MR. BLACKWELL. He is a big
man, with a kindly, rugged face, smooth-shaven,
and is dressed in an expensive, loose-fitting,
dark cutaway suit, such as rich men with no
ostentation affect. He wears square-toed boots,
a low, turn-down collar, and gray felt hat,
and over his arm he carries a linen duster.)
How be ye, John?
Why aren t you at the Fair, Hiram?
Ben thar all day. I jest come over to see ef
Ezry had eloped with my stock of goods and
Uncle Sam s mail. He s feelin kinder bad, but
I was tellin him of your career. The way to
get rich is to tend store on Fair days. Ain t
that so, John?
(MR. BLACKWELL laughs, a hearty, whole
some laugh, but says nothing.)
My business ain t what it used to be I ain t
made an arrest for nigh on to two months, and
that were only vagrancy.
4 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
There hain t even a confidence man at that Fair.
Have you seen any lords around, Hiram?
Lords! No, have you got a warrant?
I wish you would arrest him, Hiram. My wife
tells me he s come over here to marry Edith.
By jiminy, that feller! The Marquis of
(With mock impressiveness.)
The Marquis of Tredbury ! He s got a whole
soot of rooms at Tipton s. Guess Edith s got
more sense than to invest in a shell game of that
kind, hain t she, John?
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 5
I hope so.
Say, when I heard he was at Tipton s Hotel,
I says to Bill Morton, it seems kinder strange
that Mrs. Blackwell hain t got hold of him and
fetched him up to that palatial camp of yours.
That s just what she s going to do. She s
coming over after him in the launch, and he s
coming down from Tipton s to meet her here.
I want to know!
John, you and I used to run around these hills
barefoot when we were boys, long afore you went
to New York and got to be a millionnaire. I
always knowed you was smart, but I never cal-
lated to see you a captain of industry. And I
ain t never got above a country storekeeper and
(Patting the badge.)
6 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
(Laughs deprecatingly, takes out two
cigars, gives one to HIRAM, and they
Hiram, do you remember my grandfather,
the Reverend Cephas Blackwell?
Do I remember him? Say, John, I ll never
forgit the day he caught you and me stealin
apples outen Deacon Saunders orchard. May
be he didn t tan us I want to know !
Those were happy days, Hiram.
(Puts his hand on HIRAM S shoulder.)
I ve often thought I could put my finger on
one reason of your success, John. You never
forgit old friends.
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 7
Wai, you never did. When you come back here
fifteen years ago, with all that money, and bought
your grandfather s farm I was kinder skeered.
I own to it. I thought you d forgit Hiram Peters.
But, by godfrey, you most shook my hand off,
when you seen me in front of this here store.
John, them was days afore your first wife died,
afore you built this grand camp, when you was
livin plain and comfortable in the Reverend
Cephas s old house. I always had a fancy for
that house. Now it hain t nothin but a what
do you call it?
Wai, you hain t changed, though you hev got
all them powdered mummies in gold lace and
stockin s to wait on you.
8 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
(MR. BLACKWELL sighs. HIRAM places
his hand on his shoulder, sympatheti
Don t take it so hard, John, I didn t mean
nothin . One thing, you hain t lost your taste
for fancy chickens, hev you? Thar s some of the
finest I ever see over to the Fair, close to that place
whar they hev the stun bolt contests. Say, John,
thar s a little black and red cock thar that puts
up as fine as any bird I ever clapped eyes on. He
could lick any chicken in your coop.
Hiram, I m ashamed of you. You know I
don t buy them to fight.
No, you don t buy em to fight, but when they
do fight, you hain t averse to lookin on. John,
I wasn t brought up with you for nothin . And
that daughter of yours is jest like you, a nice,
common lady, no airs, and my, hain t she pretty !
(Enter, Left, LORD TREDBURY and MR. REGI
NALD BARKING, followed by TILDEN, weighted
down with hat boxes and other luggage, which
he deposits on the grass. TREDBURY is a well-
built, clean-cut, athletic-looking young man,
ACT i THE TITLE-MART 9
soberly dressed in a Hue serge suit and with
a quiet manner. MR. REGINALD BARKING
is heavier built, red-jaced, wears a somewhat
loud gray checked morning suit, white spats,
and a monocle.)
Speakin of the devil, thar s the lord now.
(Glances at BARKING with anything but
Well, good-by, Hiram ; I ll see you at the Fair.
Did you say they were near the stone bolt place ?
By godfrey, I thought ye couldn t keep away.
Say, John, take a look at the black and red.
And say, John, thar s a mottled one thar
10 THE TITLE-MART ACT l
Tilden, you may inquire for the mail.
(Exit TILDEN into the Post-office. HI
RAM PETERS watches them with curi
osity, not unmixed with contempt.}
No one here yet, Reggie.
(TILDEN emerges from the Post-office
with letters. He gives quite a number
to LORD TREDBURY, and one or two to
(Puts in his glass, looks at his letters,
and thrusts them into his pocket. To
I say, my good fellow, is there a chemist in
Guess you ve made a mistake, Mister, I m a
damned bad feller. See that badge?
(Pointing to the badge on his waistcoat.)
(Adjusting his glass, and examining
Very interesting, I m sure. But, where is
ACT I THE TITLE-MART n
They call em drug stores in America, Barking.
Wai, you seem to hev some sense. Thar s
a kind of a drug store about a block up the road.
(Points off Right.)
What an interesting native ! I say, if you don t
mind, I think I ll be strolling up there.
Hain t you going to exhibit him at the fair?
(TILDEN claps his hand over his
Oh, he s a pretty good sort when you get to
12 THE TITLE-MART ACT I
Guess I don t want to know him. If he s a
lord, then I don t stand for him.
(Exit, Left, in deep disgust.)
(Laughing quietly: to TILDEN.)
Just run away and pay that chap who drove us
Very good, your lordship.
(Taking out his letters, and going over
and sitting down on the seat under the
Well, here I am in America, with fifteen thou
sand pounds worth of debts, two country places
mortgaged up to the leads, assets, a letter of
introduction to Mrs. Blackwell, stepmother to an
heiress worth twenty millions.
(Lights a cigarette.)
Let s see what we have here.
(Opens lills: reads languidly.)
"Will your lordship please remit -
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 13
(Tears it up into pieces and throws it
on the grass. Opens another.)
"Will your lordship please see that a small
(Tears it up, throws pieces on the grass,
and opens another.)
"We shall not press your lordship at this time,
as we understand that your lordship is in Amer
(Tears it up and throws pieces on the
Hello, here s a letter from Marjorie.
(Looks at the outside.)
Postmarked Newport, R.I., sent to the steamer
and forwarded here.
(Opens it, reads a little way.)
I say, here s a rum go.
"I am staying here in Newport
with the Windhams. I have just had a note from
Lady Allerdyce saying you were coming to this
country on the Campagna, and it is entendu that
you are going to the Adirondacks to visit the
Blackwells. You and I have always been friends,
and I don t mind being frank with you. I have
been in America three weeks, and there are many
more desirable partis in the country than Edith
I 4 THE TITLE-MART ACT I
Blackwell. Heiresses, really attractive ones, are
very easy to get. This Blackwell girl is unattrac
tive, hoidenish, impossible.
(TREDBURY repeats: "Unattractive, hoi
denish, impossible ! " )
Entre nous, she would never do for the Marquess
of Tredbury. I knew the Blackwells in London,
where I assisted in getting a few invitations for
Mrs. Blackwell, for a consideration. It was
a case of noblesse oblige. Mrs. Blackwell is one
of those horrid American women who know all
about titles. If you get this before you start
for the Adirondacks, don t start. Come to
"Lady Allerdyce writes me that you are crossing
with your friend of Oxford days, Reggie Barking,
of Barking s china. Treddy, why wouldn t he
do for me ? I shall have to marry some one like
that soon, so bring him here. And surely he
can t be after a rich American. He will have to
marry into the Aristocracy. I saw him once
from the Ladies Gallery in the House of Com
mons, when everybody was leaving because he
was going to speak. But if I married him, I
shouldn t have to listen to his speeches, and it
would be better than doing secretary s work at
house parties. I think I might persuade the
Duke to get him a title.
"Whatever you do, don t go to the Blackwells ,
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 15
or that designing woman will marry you to her
stepdaughter before you can turn around. I
suppose I shall have to go there before I leave
America. Mais, que voulez vous? Beggars are
"Yours in haste,
By jove, I wish I d got that note earlier.
I suppose there s no getting out of it now.
(Enter BARKING, Right.)
I say, Treddy, Mrs. Blackwell isn t expecting
me, you know. It would be devilish awkward
if she didn t want me she only invited you.
Never mind that, old chap, Americans have
the reputation of being very hospitable.
Unattractive, hoidenish, impossible!
What did you say?
16 THE TITLE-MART ACT I
Reggie, I ve had a letter from Lady Marjorie
Ticknor. She s in Newport.
What, the Duke of Kay s granddaughter?
By the way, she had heard I was travelling
with you, and wanted me to bring you to New
(Putting up his glass.)
Did she say anything about me?
Ahem yes said she d seen you in the House
or something of that sort.
You don t mind reading it, do you, Treddy?
It wouldn t be at all good for you, Reggie.
She gives you rather a puff, you know.
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 17
Does she, now ! This is a red-letter day for me.
(Drawing a letter from his pocket. Im
The governor has made a few er contri
butions to the party, you know and he expects
to be made a lord any day.
I congratulate you, old chap. Why, that means
you will have a title.
You look more like a person with a title
than I do. Every one s picked you out for the
lord, at first.
I wish to the devil you would take my title and use
it until you get your own.
What do you mean?
Just that. Take the title and use it as long as
you want. I should be infinitely obliged to be
1 8 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
relieved of it for a while, and it can t make a
great deal of difference here in America.
By jove, why not begin on Mrs. Blackwell to
day? She s sure to take you for me when she
comes down here. Let her think so.
By jove, it would be a rum joke. And you?
I will go as plain Mr. Barking, of Barking s
china. I beg pardon as Reginald Barking,
(Admiringly: slapping his shoulder.)
I say, Tredbury, that would be like you. You
haven t changed a bit since Oxford. I believe
you re the wildest devil in England.
If you re going to have the title, you ll have to
get over that beastly habit of thumping people,
Barking. I suppose you inherit it.
I suppose I do. My old governor used to say
that it was worth more to him to be seen slapping
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 19
a lord on the back than to have his charity sub
And this is wasted !
(He sits down on the bench, and lights a
Reggie, I m really serious. Take my title when
we go up to the Blackwells , there s a good-hearted
But there s the heiress. She might fall in love
with me, you know.
Oh, no, she wouldn t.
I don t think it s quite decent to say that. She
might fall in love with me.
(Looking him over critically.)
I find it very difficult to lie to you, Reggie.
She might take a fancy to you, of course there s
the off chance. I should be willing to make the
odds twenty to one.
20 THE TITLE-MART ACT I
Guineas, if you like.
Of course, you re in a bad humor. That may
account for it. But upon my word, I don t see
why you should go out of your way to insult me.
I ve always thought er I wasn t bad looking,
Who said you were bad looking?
You inferred it.
Nothing of the kind. I said it wasn t probable
that Miss Blackwell would fall in love with you.
No more it is.
(Examining BARKING critically.)
You re a very imposing, distinguished-looking
person, Reggie, but er you re not precisely
the kind women leave their husbands for.
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 21
(Continuing contemplatively. )
Now, if you were to go up there to the Black-
wells , this little affair of Miss BlackwelFs getting
married to a title would languish of itself. You
wouldn t want an ugly girl, and she wouldn t
You didn t say she was ugly.
Didn t I? Well, she is. I ve been told so, -
on the best authority. She s unattractive, hoi-
denish, impossible, and you won t fancy her.
It will only be for a day, and we ll go on to New
(Rises, and crosses over Right.)
I think I ll go and see what became of Tilden.
(Exit, lower Right.)
(Calling after him.)
I say, you ve quite offended me, you know.
22 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
Confound em, they re so dashed sure of them
(Enter, Left, EDITH BLACK WELL. She is a very
handsome girl, dressed in a linen riding habit,
such as is worn in the country, and she swings
a hunting whip. She barely glances at BARKING,
and goes into the Post-office. BARKING takes
out his glass, fixes it in his eye, and looks after
By jove, what a ripping girl !
(EDITH comes out of the Post-office with two letters
in her hand. She flashes an amused look at
him, goes slowly down Left, sits down on the
seat under the tree, and begins to read her
letters, glancing at him from time to time with
the same amused look. When she looks at him,
BARKING looks away, but keeps his glass in,
and when she drops her eyes, he looks at her
again. He coughs from time to time.)
Devilish fetching, by jove !
Devilish fetching !
(Looking up at him again.)
You really ought to take something.
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 23
Er I beg pardon. Take something, did you
For the cough. I am afraid you will go into a
(Trying to be coquettish. Completely
Oh, I say, how jolly of you !
How jolly of me?
Er to speak to me.
It was merely charity, because you don t
appear to be able to take care of yourself.
It s awfully jolly to have some one to look after
one, you know.
24 THE TITLE-MART ACT I
(Glances at the luggage on the grass.)
What s become of your guardian?
Er I m alone.
That isn t very complimentary to me.
(BARKING starts to explain.)
Alone in America, I suppose you mean. How
Er that is
(Hesitates, and continues to look at her
through the monocle.}
You have come over here to learn to speak
English fluently, I gather. I m afraid it will
take a long time.
Oh, I say !
(Rising, and apparently becoming fas
cinated by the monocle.}
I wish I could do that. Do you suppose it
would fit my eye?
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 25
I m sure I don t know.
Does it come off?
(Solemnly dropping it out oj his eye.)
See ! Like that.
I wonder if I could do it.
(BARKING unfastens it from his coat and
hands it to her. She puts it in her eye,
and glances coldly at BARKING.)
Er Lord Tredbury, I believe.
By jove !
She s taken me for Treddy.
(Mimicking BARKING, drops the glass
out oj her eye. She hands it to him.)
I say, my stepmother s coming for you.
26 THE TITLE-MART
Er I beg pardon your stepmother?
Yes, my stepmother. Do you imagine for a
moment that a young man with a title could be in
the surrounding country without her coming for
Er might I ask to whom I am speaking ?
Certainly. I m Miss Blackwell.
You re you re Miss Blackwell !
(Backs away from her, and suddenly
begins to laugh at the joke on TRED-
What s so funny about that?
Nothing. I beg pardon, I m sure. I was er
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 27
- er surprised that s all surprised. Do
you know who I thought you were?
I haven t the faintest idea.
Dotty Davenport !
Oh, the actress.
Er there is a remarkable resemblance, you
know only you are better looking.
(After an awkward pause.)
Do you know, I expected to find you quite ugly
You must have been reading Henry James.
28 THE TITLE-MART
I have been thinking, instead, of Guinevere.
Never heard of her. Was she fast?
Er fast ! By jove, that s awfully good, you
Did she have a record?
(Bursting into laughter.)
How awfully jolly you are ! I say, she did have
rather a record,
She was a thoroughbred, of course?
Oh er yes, a thoroughbred. How hu
morous you Americans are.
ACT i THE TITLE-MART 29
I shall look her up. Did you say her name was
(Screws in his monocle.)
She wasn t a horse, you know; she was a queen.
Is that all?
You ve never read Tennyson?
Let me see. He wrote one of the Badminton
series, didn t he ?
Oh, by jove ! He was a poet.
(Appearing to lose interest.)
Oh ! I should hardly have thought you poeti
cal, Lord Tredbury.
I say, do you think I look like a lord?
30 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
Do I er act like a lord ?
If one may call it acting.
Oh, I say, dashed clever!
I can t stay here talking to you all day. I
promised my father to meet him at the Fair.
Oh, I say, mayn t I go along?
I am afraid you ll have to wait for my step
mother. I suppose the motor boat has broken
down again, but don t be discouraged. My step
mother will get you.
(Edith picks up the riding whip, smiles
at him, and exit, Left.}
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 31
(Sticking in his glass, and looking after
Phew! Ugly, unattractive, hoidenish! By
jove, I believe I ll go ! What a joke on Treddy !
(Enter, Right, LORD TREDBURY.)
Who was the lady, Reggie?
Er what lady ?
Oh, come now, what lady !
Er you mean that was just here? Er
by the way, Treddy, did you ever see Dotty
I ve seen her photograph. She s one of the few
I haven t known, and I ve always wanted to. Do
you mean to say that was Dotty Davenport?
(Steps over Left, apparently gazing after
By jove, she can ride! What s she doing here?
32 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
Er staying at the Blackwells camp.
That s rather fortunate.
And er I say, deuced odd, you know,
but she took me for you. She called me Lord
I m almost reconciled to going up to the Black-
wells . Where s she gone now?
To the Fair, she said.
To the Fair, eh?
You think Miss Davenport attractive?
Don t you?
ACT i THE TITLE-MART 33
E r no t very. You know I never had your
passion for actresses.
Reggie, I m afraid you ll have to assume the
title for this visit. It s thrust upon you.
(With pretended reluctance.)
Couldn t think of it.
(The sound of a motor boat is heard.)
(Stepping behind the Post-office and
looking off into the lake.)
There comes Mrs. Blackwell now. Do be
decent, Reggie, it can t do any harm. Er I
imagine Mrs. Blackwell, from what I hear of her,
will enjoy the joke. And just say that you have
a friend you would like to bring along a Mr.
(Goes over Left.)
A Mr. Barking. Where are you going? ^
(The sound of a band is heard in the
34 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
I think I ll step over to the Fair. It can t be
far away. I hear it. I ve always been interested
in Fairs. You might stop there for me if
Mrs. Blackwell is willing to put me up.
(Exit Left, swinging his stick.)
(Calling after him, in a panic.)
I say, Tredbury, don t be an ass. It s impos
sible. The man s mad mad !
I say come back !
(Glances fearfully behind him, and goes over
extreme lower Left and stands with every ap
pearance of being about to run after him. EZRA
SWAZEY comes out of the Post-office, his pencil
behind his ear, a scoop in his hand, and spits.
Enter from Right, rear of Post-office, MRS.
BLACKWELL and LAWRENCE PEPYS. MRS.
BLACKWELL is a pretty woman of about thirty-
five, very elaborately dressed, has many social
airs, and talks too rapidly for interruption.
PEPYS is a comfortable, healthy-looking gentle
man of about forty years, in gray flannels and a
straw hat. When he takes off the hat it is seen
that he is a little inclined to baldness.)
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 35
Thank heaven, there s the luggage! I was
afraid we d missed him.
(Nudging PEPYS, and going forward.)
There he is ! I should have known him any
where, Larry. They are so unmistakable ! Ahem !
I believe I have the pleasure of addressing Lord
Tredbury. Dear Lord Tredbury, I m so sorry to
keep you waiting, really. I scarcely know how to
apologize. But motor boats are so uncertain,
and there was something the matter with the
cylinder wasn t it the cylinder, Larry? Yes.
Once we were on the lake nearly half the night.
(She has approached him effusively
and taken his hand. BARKING over
whelmed with embarrassment, and try
ing to get a word in.)
Why didn t you come up to the camp at once,
instead of going to Tipton s Hotel and sending me
Lady Deering s letter? You would have been so
welcome. I love English people, and they have
been so kind to me. How did you leave dear
But, I say, Mrs. Blackwell, I m not
(Enter EDITH, Right.)
36 THE TITLE-MART ACT I
Here s Edith !
Isn t Papa here? They told me at the Fair
he was coming over here with Hiram to get a
crate for some chickens he d bought.
(Going to her: impressively.)
My dear, here s Lord Tredbury !
(Nodding to BARKING, carelessly.)
Yes, I ve been talking to him. I wonder where
Papa can be?
You ve you ve been talking to him !
(Aside, to EDITH.)
Oh, Edith, how could you have left him ! My
dear, I may not have told you. One of the oldest
titles in England !
Yes, yes, you told me, quite threadbare, I
Oh, Edith, you must try not to shock him
you shock everybody.
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 37
(Enter man in livery, from motor boat.)
Gustave, put Lord Tredbury s luggage on the
(Man takes luggage.)
Oh, please, Mrs. Blackwell, I must explain !
/ am the one to explain. But first let me intro
duce you formally to Miss Blackwell
and allow me to present Mr. Pepys.
(The men bow.)
And now we really must be going if we are to have
My God! what shall I do? I ll let Tredbury
I say, Mrs. Blackwell, would you mind going to
the Fair for a few moments?
To the Fair! Dear Lord Tredbury, you
couldn t possibly take any interest in an ordinary
38 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
American Fair such a hodge-podge and such
smells ! And they are not even opened.
The fact is I should like awfully to see it.
I have a friend
Why, of course, it might be amusing it s so
barbaric if you can stand the smells. Come,
Edith, we ll all go.
I have to stay here. I promised Papa I d
Larry, I ll bet you ten dollars my mare beats
your old motor boat home.
You ought to give odds.
(To EZRA, who is on the porch.)
Ezra, I want to telephone to the Centre.
(With a little coquetry, to BARKING.)
I ll see you at tea, Lord Tredbury. Your
English seems to be improving.
(Exit into store.)
ACT ! THE TITLE-MART 39
(Looking after her, through his glass.)
By jove !
(Smiling with appreciation at his ob
Edith is quite a personage; I m sure you ll
like her. Come, Lord Tredbury, we ll go by
the launch. It s shorter.
(MRS. BLACKWELL, BARKING, and PEPYS
going around the Post-office.)
But mind, I don t hold out any hopes of the
(Exit MRS. BLACKWELL, BARKING, and
Everybody gits thar but me.
(Enter LORD TREDBURY, followed by
I wonder how the deuce I missed her 1
What s become of the luggage?
I int touched it, me lord.
40 THE TITLE-MART ACT 1
Where have you been all this time ?
I ad to find the man with the osses, me lord.
I come across im at last in a public ouse.
Say, Mister, Mrs. Blackwell took your things,
along with that other lord, and went off to the
Fair in the la nch.
Oh, thanks. Tilden!
Go to the Fair, find Mr. Barking, and be care
ful to address him as Lord Tredbury
Tm a lord, your lordship !
Call him Lord Tredbury, and speak of me
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 41
as Mr. Barking. And tell him Mr. Barking is
here waiting for him. Do you understand?
Perfectly, me lord. I ve done strange things
for your lordship before.
And then you are to go to Tipton s Hotel, and
stay there until I send for you.
(TILDEN tips, and exit, Left. TREDBURY
lights a cigarette, crosses over and sits
down on the seat with the tree between
him and the Post-office. EDITH comes
out of Post-office.)
Say, which is the lord, anyway?
What do you mean, Ezra ? I ve only seen one.
Well, thar s been two stoppin at Tipton s.
And while you were in telephonin the other one
come here with his hired man he s thar now,
42 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
whar the smoke is behind the tree he come
here with his hired man and told him to go to
the Fair and call the other lord something or
other. Say, I guess I ought to tell Hiram. This
is a con game. These Fairs always bring crooks.
(Looks at him, then puts her hand to her
mouth to suppress laughter. Goes for
ward, peeks around the tree at the
unconscious TREDBURY, then returns.
Takes a dollar from her purse and
hands it to EZRA.)
I ll give you that if you say nothing about it to
any one. And don t tell him who I am even if
he asks you.
Gee Whiz, I promise. Cross myself. Say,
this is better than goin to the Fair.
(EDITH approaches TREDBURY from be
hind, and swinging her whip from
the lash, purposely comes very near
TREDBURY S head with it.)
(Starting to his feet.)
Easy there !
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 43
I ve been looking everywhere for you,
Yes. I heard you d gone to the Fair, and
missed you there. You see, I ve always wanted
to meet you, Miss Davenport. I er ad
mire the profession.
(EDITH stifles a desire to laugh, and
continues to look at him, which he
I ve I ve always wanted to see you, but by
bad luck I was in Switzerland when you played
"Banbury Cross" in London. If I may be
allowed to say so, you re one of the very few
actresses who doesn t disappoint off the stage.
And when I heard that Dotty Davenport was
staying at the Blackwells -
Is it indiscreet to ask to whom I m speaking?
44 THE TITLE-MART ACT l
I m not sure that I quite know.
You see, I m quite overcome at this unex
This not knowing who one is seems to be a
British characteristic. Perhaps I can help you.
Have you a card case in your pocket, or an
accident insurance policy?
(TREDBURY continues to gaze at her
with quiet admiration.)
If I had happened to hit you with the head of
this riding whip, you might never have been
identified. In addition to recalling me, have you
any previous recollections?
I m rather glad you didn t hit me on the head,
It might have jogged your memory.
I got a nasty lick with a polo mallet once.
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 45
Perhaps that s what s the matter with you.
Oh, come now, you don t think there s anything
the matter with me.
It does strike me as a little strange that you
can t remember your name. I met another
Englishman who looked as if he didn t know his
name not twenty minutes ago, Lord Tredbury.
Do you know him?
I er yes.
You seem a little ashamed of it. Is he dis
Oh, quite the contrary. A sober, reliable,
steady-going sort of chap. Would you mind
telling me what you are laughing at?
4 6 THE TITLE-MART ACT I
I m relieved to hear it. I heard he d gamed
away his castle, and drunk up the family library.
It s made him awfully dry. And well, I can t
tell you everything. He s supposed to be the
worst case in England.
I m sure you do him an injustice. He doesn t
look like a rake, does he?
No. If I had seen you two together, I should
have picked you for the part.
I feel flattered.
He seems much too stupid.
Thanks very much. Then you were disap
pointed in Tredbury?
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 47
Oh, no, not disappointed. He was quite what
I expected an uninteresting titled person with
out any brains.
I don t care at all for titles that s one of my
failings. I hope you haven t one, too.
Have you ever heard the name of Barking?
I once existed off it in the nursery.
Er my name s Barking Reginald Barking.
Are you quite sure? But you look too clever
to make a mistake of that kind. As for Lord
Tredbury, of course it is too much to expect that
he should always remember his name.
What are these things?
(She stoops and picks up some of the
remnants of TREDBURY s letters, which
are strewn on the grass; reads:)
48 THE TITLE-MART ACT I
"To H. I. and A. M. the Emperor of Austria.
Will Lord Tredbury kindly oblige us with a
cheque? " Is that the way Lord Tredbury treats
Well er in England, the fact is that trades
men haven t much respect for people who pay
them promptly. Of course they re paid sooner
But who s going to pay Lord Tredbury s?
I don t quite know. Why do you ask?
Oh, for no reason. I heard he was considering
(Begins to laugh.}
That s off.
Off? What do you mean? I never heard it
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 49
You re staying at the Blackwells , aren t you?
Awfully nice girl, Miss Blackwell !
She s nothing of the sort.
That s what er Tredbury heard. And
you see, he s an odd chap. He hasn t at all
got the modern idea of marriage, and he feels
that, as long as he has to sell his beastly title, he
might as well try for a chance of getting some one
he could er love, and all that sort of thing.
This Lord Tredbury doesn t seem very grasp
ing in his ideas. But who was kind enough to
give him this very accurate notion of Miss Black-
Well, I ll tell you, Miss Davenport. We re
chummy, and all that.
(Produces LADY MARJORIE S letter.)
See that letter !
5^ THE TITLE-MART ACT i
Why, it s addressed to Lord Tredbury !
Yes er -he showed it to me. He didn t
get it till just now too late to turn back, you
know. Rather a joke on Tredbury. It s from
Lady Marjorie Ticknor you wouldn t know
her she s travelled with the Blackwells.
(Opens the letter.)
She s staying in Newport, and advises Tred
bury to come there. Listen :
"This Blackwell girl is hoidenish, unattractive,
impossible. Entre nous, she would never do for
the Marquess of Tredbury."
How kind of Lady Marjorie ! So disinterested !
Oh, Marjorie could hardly be called disin
terested, you know. She had special reasons for
asking Tredbury to Newport. She has an
eye on Barking.
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 51
Oh, yes, of course, on me. A jolly grind on
(Reads, jrom sheer embarrassment:)
"Lady Allerdyce writes me that you are cross
ing with your friend of Oxford days, Reggie
Barking, of Barking s china. Treddy, why
wouldn t he do for me? I shall have to marry
some one like that soon, so bring him here. And
surely he can t be after a rich American. He
will have to marry into the Aristocracy. I saw
him once from the Ladies Gallery in the House
of Commons, when everybody was leaving be
cause he was going to speak. But if I married
him, I shouldn t have to listen to his speeches,
and it would be better than doing secretary s
work at house parties. I think I might persuade
the Duke to get him a title."
So you are destined for Lady Marjorie !
(Alarmed at the situation he has got into.)
Not me ! Oh, no not me. I d rather marry
52 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
Even the unattractive Blackwell girl?
I hope you re not a friend of hers.
Quite the contrary. I ve travelled with her
(Jumping at the opening.)
Travelled ! Er I suppose you travel in the
summer, when you are not acting.
Have you ever been in Norway?
Bother Norway ! Have you ever been in
Perhaps you picked up something of the Jiu
Jitsu Japanese wrestling. I m rather interested
in it, just now.
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 53
I know one or two holds.
Let s see if I know them. What are they?
You mean to try them here?
Yes, why not?
(She lays down the riding whip.)
Show me the first.
Well, I don t mind, Dotty. May I call you
(They face each other, TREDBURY hesi
tatingly y EDITH calmly. She takes
hold of his arm, giving him a jerk that
nearly carries him off his jeet. He
drops Marjorie s letter.)
That s the simplest one. I suppose you know
54 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
(EZRA SWAZEY is enjoying this hugely
jrom the porch.)
Ha, ha ! Yes, I know that. But I ll show you
(He lays down his hat, and manoeuvres
jor a hold, she defending herself.)
You re jolly good at it.
(He catches her and she trips.)
That s not a bad one. But I believe I can
stop you if you try it again.
That wasn t at all bad. Try it again.
(They try it again, when enter, around
Right end of Post-office, MRS. BLACK-
WELL, BARKING, and PEPYS, who
stand aghast watching the perform
ance. TREDBURY catches sight of
them and breaks loose with an excla
Hello, Grace !
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 55
(MRS. BLACKWELL does not answer, but
continues to stare through her lor
gnette. With a glance at the petrified
party, EDITH picks up her riding
whip, and incidentally MARJORIE S
letter, which she pockets, unnoticed
by TREDBURY, who is staring in a
horrified way at MRS. BLACKWELL.
His hat is off, and he is more or less
Good-by, Mr. Barking.
(Exit EDITH, Left.)
(In an icy voice, to BARKING.)
I m afraid we really ought to be going, dear
Lord Tredbury. It s quite late, and none of us
have had any tea. You must be famished.
Tea ! Er the fact is, I never drink it. Mrs.
Blackwell, allow me
(Is about to introduce TREDBURY.)
(Putting her hand on his arm: sweetly.}
Then you shall have something stronger than
tea, Lord Tredbury? We really must go.
.$6 THE TITLE-MART ACT i
(BARKING gives a despairing glance at
TREDBURY, who is standing mutely
gazing at them. Exit, MRS. BLACK-
WELL, dragging BARKING, followed by
PEPYS. TREDBURY gazes after them
until the motor boat is heard going of).
Then he picks up his hat.)
Say, she kind of put it over you, didn t she?
You re in the soup all around.
Er perhaps you can tell me how I can get a
carriage to go to Tipton s Hotel.
Back to Tipton s -
(He is interrupted by the entrance, lower
Right, of MR. BLACK WELL and HIRAM,
HIRAM carrying a crate of game cocks.)
(Peering into the coop.)
John, that black and red would put up a fight
worth looking at.
ACT I THE TITLE-MART 57
I won t hear of fighting, Hiram. You know
my principles on that point.
Still, if they was to get mixed up accidentally,
you wouldn t object, I ll bet a dollar.
Here s a feller wants to know how to git back to
(To HIRAM: with a glance at TRED-
Hello ! Is it possible that my wife let an Eng
lishman escape !
I guess she took the lord I saw him prancin
round after her at the Fair.
(Slapping his leg.)
That s just what she did.
(Approaching TREDBURY, with a bluff
Were you travelling with Lord Tredbury ?
58 THE TITLE-MART ACT I
Yes, yes I was.
MR. BLACK WELL
Have you lost him?
I believe he s gone home with Mrs. Blackwell.
Didn t she invite you?
Well er no, the fact is, she didn t.
Guess your name s Barking, isn t it? They
told me there was a Barking staying at Tipton s,
son of the Barking that makes the china. Sir, I
have a great respect for your father. I d like to
know him. I m Mr. Blackwell. I m glad to
(Gives TREDBURY a hearty grip.)
Just you come right along with me. I guess
there s room for three of us in the buggy, and the
ACT I THE TITLE-MART
chickens, too eh, Hiram ? We re going right up
to the camp now.
But Mrs. Blackwell -
She won t worry you. She has her guests, and
I have mine. I ve got my own wing, and we ll
have a nice little dinner together some special
Havanas and 98 Krug, and a good time. Got
It seems to be gone.
That feller in the boat took it.
Well, it s lucky I found you. She can have
her confounded titles I haven t any use for
em. Well, Hiram, we d better be moving.
(Picking up the crate: to EZRA.)
If any one calls, just say I m up to Blackwells .
60 THE TITLE-MART ACT I
(Exit, lower Right, MR. BLACKWELL,
TREDBURY, and HIRAM carrying the
crate, EZRA leaning against the post
and looking after them.)
SCENE. Loggia of Mr. Black-welVs camp in the Adiron-
dacks, spread with rugs and wicker furniture ; a ham
mock. A table with a small telephone over Left.
French novels scattered around. Entrance by French
windows into house at Left and rear. At Right a lawn,
with shrubbery and trees at extreme Right. At rear the
lawn ends in a kind of riistic balustrade that overlooks
the lake. The lake can be seen beyond the balustrade,
and the mountains in the distance.
TIME : About 6.30 in the evening of the same day.
(Enter MRS. BLACKWELL and PEPYS, a footman
with powdered hair and knee breeches follow
ing them. As MRS. BLACKWELL talks to
PEPYS, she moves about the stage, and the
footman keeps respectfully behind her y evi
dently awaiting a chance to speak to her.)
Larry, I wonder why you are so satisfactory.
You never say anything.
62 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
Perhaps that is the reason.
MRS. BLACK WELL
What a dear Lord Tredbury is ! How English
to go to one s room at once, before one has seen
the view !
There is something about the British aristocracy
that is very difficult for us to achieve. And how
marked the differences between their own classes !
The idea of Edith actually wrestling with that
vulgar Mr. Barking. I can t get over it.
I thought he seemed rather a decent fellow.
In fact, I fancy him on the whole more than this
(MR. PEPYS sits down in a chair and
lights a cigarette. MRS. BLACKWELL
walks up and down, the jootman mov
ing after her.)
Larry ! You know what trade is in England.
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 63
Not as good as it was, I believe.
It would be just like Edith to fancy this Bark
ing. I had to snub him.
(Going close to him: with an air of
Larry, she must marry Tredbury. I ve quite
set my heart on it.
Gracious ! Already !
Why are you so determined?
Don t be ridiculous, Larry. How can you ask
a man of the world ? Can t you see the
advantages ? And then I should be quits with
Adelaide Townsend. She s been simply unbear
able since Nina became the Comtesse de Santerre-
Then you are only doing this to get even with
64 THE TITLE-MART ACT II
Don t be idiotic, Larry.
(Walks off on the lawn.)
In heaven s name, what is it? Ever since I
came in you ve been shadowing me like like
an evil spirit.
If you please, Madam, Lady Marjorie Ticknor
Lady Marjorie ! Larry, Lady Marjorie Tick
What about her?
She s here here.
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 65
Lucky woman. How did she get here?
That s what I want to know.
How did she get here?
If you please, Madam, she came by way of
Fad s Centre.
By way of Fad s Centre ! Go on !
Yes, Madam. Er Ladyship telegraphed from
Newport, but it seems the message went to
How English, to telegraph to Balchville !
Where is her ladyship now?
In her room, Madam.
66 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
(Starts away, Lejt.)
If you please, Madam, her ladyship gave orders
she was not to be disturbed under no conditions.
Dear Marjorie ! How delightfully English !
I wish we could learn the same sense of feeling
at home in other people s houses.
That will do. You might tell her ladyship s
maid that a new parcel of French novels came
Er ladyship has already sent for them, Madam.
Did her ladyship get the kind of tea she likes ?
Please, Madam, she ad the ousekeeper up,
and told er to telegraph to New York for it.
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 67
Quite right. That will do.
Dear Marjorie !
Dear Marjorie !
Marjorie did so much for us in London, Larry.
Her industry in getting us invited places was
absolutely unremitting. Before she got through
with us we were quite au courant at all the great
houses, I assure you.
How kind of Lady Marjorie!
Yes. Just to show our gratitude, I gave her
a cheque, and told her that John had made a
venture on the stock market in her name.
Very delicate of you !
68 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
The aristocracy are in such a bad way, my
heart bleeds for them. But John would be
furious if he knew it. He says he never in
tends to see her. And Edith dislikes her. She
positively insulted her in London. Dear
Marjorie is very forgiving. I should never speak
to Edith again if I were Marjorie. Edith is
so like John. I wonder if mortal woman ever
struggled against such odds as Edith and John
(Telephone on table rings. MRS. BLACK-
WELL goes to it.)
Hello! Who is it? Is that you, Adelaide?
Dear Adelaide. How is the giand-aunt? I m
so sorry. My dear ! Yes, I have a house party,
a small one. Yes, dear! Lord Tredbury, of
course you know him. No? He s charming,
so au fait, so much the great noble, so completely
what he ought to be. Who else? A dear old
friend, Lady Marjorie Ticknor, granddaughter
of the Duke of Kay, who was so kind to us in
London. You will love her. She arrived quite
What time? At eight. Are you quite well,
Adelaide? Good- by, dear.
(Puts up the telephone.)
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 69
Larry, it s Adelaide Townsend ! She wants us
all for dinner. Could anything be more oppor
Rather short notice, isn t it?
Her grand- aunt s on the point of death,
she didn t think she d live till dinner-time. I
wouldn t give the snap of my finger for all
the titles on the continent. Here comes Edith
Oh, Edith, I have a surprise for you !
Unpleasant, I suppose.
Your surprises generally are.
70 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
There, Larry, isn t she the most exasperating
girl you ever saw !
Lady Marjorie Ticknor s here.
Lady Marjorie Ticknor?
Yes. She arrived unexpectedly from Newport
(Thinking oj the letter she has seen,
I try to do my whole duty by you. I take you
out in London, and I have the aristocracy here,
and you treat them abominably. You fling
your chances to the winds. You were horribly
rude to Lady Marjorie in London. I m quite
surprised she comes here at all.
(PEPYS walks on terrace, discreetly, dur
ing this speech.)
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 71
Then you don t know Lady Marjorie.
I won t allow you to exasperate me.
(With sudden appeal.)
Edith, do be nice to her. She is an old friend of
Tredbury s. They belong to the same set, you
know, the only set worth knowing in England.
As for Lord Tredbury, I ve quite lost my heart
to him. And it says in the Peerage that he s
descended from the first baron, who came over
with Samuel the Conqueror.
It seems quite wonderful.
His descent. No wonder there isn t much left,
now that he has arrived at the bottom.
Oh, dear, we are wasting so much time, and I
don t know what to say to you how to appeal
72 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
to you. Young girls know so little of life, are so
slow to see where their advantage and happiness
lies. And, until very lately, we ve always been
so bourgeois in America. We have always al
lowed silly, youthful inclinations to govern that
most important of all matters marriage. Now
(Looking meaningly at EDITH.)
there s no use mincing things. Lord Tredbury
has come over here to get a wife.
I should never have guessed it! Are there
none left in England?
Edith, this bitterness is very unnatural at
your age. Lord Tredbury is doing quite the
usual and honorable thing. In order to keep
up an aristocracy, you know, there must be
And the way the money is obtained makes no
particular difference. His ancestors fought for
it, he marries for it. Both are equally dangerous.
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 73
Edith, if you only could be brought to realize
your opportunity. Tredbury is half in love with
you already I can see that. And he is every
thing that could be desired in a husband im
posing, and all that, and you know, it isn t
at all good form to have brains nowadays.
I shouldn t allow brains to interfere if I loved
Love ! Oh, my dear, that isn t necessary in a
modern marriage, when one need never see any
thing of one s husband.
(Approaching PEPYS, and calling to him.)
Larry, I want to show you the new terra-cotta
vases which came to-day.
(Exit, with PEPYS, upper Right, as
BARKING, in evening clothes, enters
(Remaining seated, and looking up to
him quizzically, but calmly.)
74 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
(Obviously nervous: putting in his
I say, what a jolly place, you know !
It doesn t seem very jolly just now.
What do you mean?
(With a swift look.)
It s rather quiet, just you and I. Isn t it?
Ah, delightfully so.
(Goes over and sits near her.}
You have such er a bewitching way of
putting things, Miss Blackwell. I m awfully
glad I came.
Poor Mr. Barking.
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART
(Starting and dropping his eyeglass.}
Why do you say that?
Because I feel it. It was mean to leave him
alone on the landing.
(Relieved : laughing. )
I say, your stepmother gave him a beastly
snub, didn t she?
It seems to amuse you. If he were my friend,
I should feel differently.
There is er there is a kind of a joke con
nected with all this. I am sure you would laugh
if you knew it. A deuced good joke on on
(Gazing off, absently.)
Oh, on Mr. Barking!
76 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
(Looks at her suspiciously.)
Certainly. Why not?
What is the joke?
Well er I came here, and he didn t.
(Laughs heartily, suddenly looks at
EDITH, and stops.)
Don t you think it funny?
It must be your English sense of humor.
I say, he d give his boots to be here with you.
They looked very nice.
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 77
I say, but you are jolly !
(Sits down near her.)
I rather stole a march on him, you know.
That remains to be seen.
I say, I ll tell you something.
(Leans towards her.)
I came because you were here.
(Leaning towards him.)
Do you know, I guessed it.
Really, now. I I hoped you did.
(A pause, as if making up his mind
how to go on.)
Er I say, Miss Blackwell er you don t
care anything about titles, do you ?
7 8 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
You didn t strike me as a person who would.
(Gazing at him.)
I don t care anything about your title.
Er I beg pardon.
(Evidently reassured by her expression.)
By jove, you have a subtle way of putting things.
Er suppose now, merely for the sake of argu
ment, I were not Lord Tredbury, but plain Mr.
It would make no difference to me.
Eh ! By jove, wouldn t it?
You would always be the same to me.
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 79
I say, should I? How strange! From the
moment I saw you, I have had the same feeling
-er about you. Er Miss Blackwell no
revelation I could make about myself would
change er would change your feelings tow
I was about to say er coming back to
this er Mr. Barking er his governor
his father may have a title in the near future,
which would descend to him.
How interesting !
(Giving him a look.)
But I am not especially interested in Mr.
Er of course not.
(Enter, Lejt, two powdered FOOTMEN, who begin
to tidy up the porch. Enter, Right, MRS.
BLACKWELL and MR. PEPYS.)
8o THE TITLE-MART ACT n
MRS. BLACK WELL
(Looks at EDITH and BARKING with ap
proval, and then coughs discreetly.
BARKING starts away from EDITH and
rises. EDITH does not move.)
Edith, dear, aren t you dressed yet? But it
never takes you long. Dear Lord Tredbury,
you must excuse this camp. It is so primitive.
We come here once a year to lead a simple life.
We Americans are so restless, you know, we are
just learning the value of repose.
Er quite so.
(Glancing at the FOOTMEN.)
But er I shouldn t call this precisely
primitive, my dear lady.
Of course, we have to have some comforts.
By the way, Lord Tredbury, a dear friend of
mine has arrived quite unexpectedly. You must
know her Lady Marjorie Ticknor. She is in
your set, of course.
(EDITH watching him.)
Er er Lady Marjorie Ticknor !
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 81
(EDITH rises and crosses over to PEPYS,
whom she punches. PEPYS does not
Here she is now.
(Enter LADY MARJORIE TICKNOR. She is per
haps twenty-seven, tall, and the least trifle
angular, a deject which she tries to overcome
in her gowns, with the careless but engaging
manners of one who has had to make her own
way. MRS. BLACKWELL runs to her, kisses
her on the cheek, which MARJORIE presents.)
Dear Marjorie ! I m charmed to see you !
And to think of your telegraphing to Ead s
Centre! My dear! I ve such a surprise for
you. Here s Lord Tredbury!
(Looking at BARKING through her lor
Lord Tredbury !
(Instantly perceiving that it is BARKING,
she claps her hand over her mouth
to stifle a laugh, a muffled sound es
caping. BARKING, agonized, bows,
muttering, and puts in his monocle.
82 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
MRS. BLACKWELL gazes mystified from
one to the other, and EDITH, remaining
seated in a corner of the porch, looks
on in quiet but real delight.)
I hope you haven t quarrelled. You know him,
(Goes over and takes the astounded BARK
ING S hand. Nonchalantly, yet look
ing at him with eyes full of amusement.)
I heard you landed, Tredbury. By the way,
you had somebody with you, didn t you? Oh,
I know, it was a Mr. Barking. I ve listened to
him in the House. Talks well, will make his
mark, and all that.
Where is he ?
He er that is
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 83
MRS. BLACK WELL
The fact is, Marjorie
(Rising and crossing over: carelessly.)
The fact is, that Grace snubbed him.
Snubbed him ? Grace snubbed
(Glances at BARKING, and puts her hand
over her mouth to prevent another
laugh escaping. MRS. BLACK WELL
Yes, for wrestling with me.
Wrestling with you?
That was partly the reason.
84 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
MRS. BLACK WELL
Marjorie, I couldn t Edith !
(LADY MARJORIE pays no attention to
MRS. BLACKWELL, but continues to look
at EDITH through her lorgnette.)
Yes. There was some objection about his
being china. Grace said if he had been a brewer,
it would have been different. But china I
suppose she thought if I wrestled with him too
much, he might smash. So she wouldn t invite
him here, and left him on the landing.
(On the verge oj tears.)
Dear Marjorie ! Edith is quite incorrigible,
you know. I don t know what our young girls
are coming to. She is mad about athletics, and
I suppose she led this Mr. Barking on. I
hadn t invited him here, and as Lord Tredbury
(Indicating B ARKING . )
didn t seem to make a point of it I we came
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 85
Besides, I had no reason to believe he wished
to come. I imagine he is very comfortable at
Tipton s. It is a commendable hotel.
(Carelessly: dropping her lorgnette.)
I daresay he is well enough off. I quite under
stand. Of course, he may be Prime Minister
(BARKING starts violently. EDITH laughs.)
Really ! You don t mean it !
He is very clever quite a coming man. I
believe we are much more democratic in England
than you are.
(Lifting her glasses, and gazing off over
the lawn towards the lake.)
What a wonderful country !
(Meaningly, to BARKING.)
86 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
Come and talk to me, Tredbury. I haven t seen
you for ages.
(Barking joins her, and they go down
Right. PEPYS, EDITH, and MRS. BLACK-
WELL make another group, down Left.)
Edith, I ll never forgive you, never. I do every
thing to get you on in the world, and you reward
me by humiliation. Oh, what will Lady Marjorie
think? You are always rude to her.
(Watching BARKING and MARJORIE.)
But you tell me it is good form to be rude,
(Exit MRS. BLACKWELL, in a dudgeon,
into the house.)
Poor Grace ! Edith, you must be inhabited
by a sprite. And what were you punching me
(Looking at him.)
Larry, you re a very comfortable person.
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 87
Are you recalling the days when you used to
sit on my lap?
Not exactly. But I would just as soon do it
now. I think it would be eminently safe.
It might be for you.
Don t be a humbug. I can t help confiding
in you. Larry no one can But you mustn t
No. What is it ?
(Pointing at BARKING.)
Well, that isn t Lord Tredbury.
(This conversation sinks into dumb
show. From time to time PEPYS
evinces signs of great merriment and
surprise, due to what EDITH is
I ve often seen your name in the Morning Post,
and wondered what you were like.
88 THE TITLE-MART ACT u
How very odd ! I ve had the same experience.
Do you know, it was very clever of you to think
of this joke on the Blackwells, and rather daring
to carry it out. I admire those qualities in a man.
Do you think so ? By Jove ! Before you
arrived I was on the point of telling them all
(Glancing at EDITH.)
Er I had er qualms of conscience, and
that sort of thing, you know.
My dear Mr. Barking, aren t you oversensi
tive? Why, the situation is "killing," as our
American friends would say. An eager and
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 89
scheming heiress, a more eager and scheming
stepmother, and you as Lord Tredbury.
(Touching him on the arm.)
What could be more delightful !
What, by Jove ?
(With a side glance.)
Do you know, I believe you are something of
a devil. Haven t I heard tales?
Well er I ve had my fling, of course, Lady
That s what you men call it a fling. Well,
this is a master-stroke.
Do you really think so?
Oh, I knew you were quite Satanic, let us say,
the moment I laid eyes on you.
90 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
I say, but you are clever er to have recog
nized me, and all that sort of thing.
Recognize you! I listened a whole hour in
the Ladies Gallery of the House to a speech of
yours once, enthralled. And when I was con
fronted with you to-day, as Lord Tredbury, I
saw at once what had happened, with your repu
tation for doing bright things and all that. It was
not very clever of me.
Er I think it was deuced clever if you
don t mind.
I don t mind. And what deviltry is Tredbury
up to? You and he are two of a sort, I rather
Oh, he got your letter.
Did he read it?
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 91
Yes. And by the way, he said there were
ahem some rather nice things about me in it.
There were. I hope he didn t show them to
(A pause. Then he laughs.)
I say, Tredbury thinks Miss Blackwell is Dotty
Davenport, the actress.
How did he get that notion?
I told him. Miss Blackwell looks quite a bit
like Dotty, you know. And er I believe you
described her to Tredbury as unattractive hoi-
denish something of that sort.
Yes. When you know her better you will see
what I mean. Well?
92 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
Well, he called her Miss Davenport, and she
fell into the joke, and he thinks she is visiting here
with Miss Blackwell.
What a situation !
What a joke on every one but
(Looking up at him.)
you and me.
By jove, that s so ! But how will it end ?
That s what I want to know.
You mischievous man ! You are playing your
part magnificently. I ll do mine, never fear.
(Their conversation sinks into dumb
"Hoidenish unattractive -- impossible," I
have the letter here.
You ought to hear what she says about him in it.
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 93
Edith, you re too much for me. What are you
going to do about all this?
Nothing. Just let things happen.
(Enter MRS. BLACKWELL, lower Left. She
glances at MARJORIE and BARKING through
Things are likely to happen. I m I m
(Exit, MR. PEPYS, upper Left.)
Can she be making love to him?
Possibly. It s quite easy.
Edith, how do you know?
(Across to MARJORIE.)
I m so glad you have found a friend, dear.
94 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
It is extraordinary.
Lord Tredbury has been most amusing. I
I think it must be the climate.
Edith, you must dress. We are dining at the
Grant Townsends. I hope Lord Tredbury will
(At this moment, a young REPORTER with a hand
camera enters, upper Right, and approaches the
party. All turn to look at him, MRS. BLACK-
WELL and LADY MARJORIE through lorgnettes,
BARKING through his monocle. The young
man has a keen, eager jace, is dressed in a sack
suit and felt hat, white collar, etc. He comes
on, undaunted by the stares.)
How did this person get in? I ve given the
strictest orders to allow no tourists in the grounds.
(Approaching undaunted, and singling
Am I addressing Lord Tredbury?
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 95
(Glancing fearfully at MRS. BLACK-
Er really I
Thank you. I thought so.
(Taking a step back.)
But I haven t said so.
It isn t necessary. Glad to make your acquaint
ance. My name is Clarkson, of the New York
(Takes a step forward, draws a card
from his pocket, and holds it out to
(Gases at the card helplessly through his
glass, and takes a step backward.)
Thanks very much, but er I don t think
I care for it, you know.
96 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
(With an injured but brisk air, restores
the card to his pocket.)
I hope you don t mind answering a few ques
tions, the public is interested in the titled
Englishmen who come to our shores.
May I ask how you got here, Mr. Mr. ?
Clarkson. Certainly. I came from New York
this morning. I am always sent on these impor
tant stories. On Wednesday I went to Phila
delphia on the Oliver divorce scandal, yesterday
there was a sensational murder in New Jersey,
and to-day came a telegram that Lord Tredbury
had left Tipton s Hotel to visit you.
Really, I can t allow Lord Tredbury to be
annoyed. The English aristocracy do not under
stand this sort of thing.
Dear Lord Tredbury, under our unfortunate -
Constitution I suppose you would call it
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 97
we have no rights of privacy. Alas, we have no
court journal, no nice dignified Morning Post,
or anything of that sort.
(To REPORTER: with hauteur.)
You may say that Lord Tredbury and Lady
Marjorie Ticknor are my guests, that we are
dining to-night, most informally, with Mr. and
Mrs. Grant Townsend.
(Writing rapidly: to BARKING.)
But surely you wouldn t mind telling the read
ers of the Republic the object of your journey to
this country, Lord Tredbury?
I assure you, my dear fellow, I am here with
no er mysterious object whatsoever. Just
for a visit.
(Looks from one to the other of the group,
as ij in vindication.)
Just for a visit.
MRS. BLACK WELL
Just for a visit.
98 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
There is a rumor that Cupid is responsible
for the visit.
Oh, I say !
How wicked of Cupid!
Cupid brings a great many of the British aris
tocracy to our shore, Miss Blackwell. And, it is
said that we Americans, too, are gradually acquir
ing an aristocracy.
I suppose you mean that we are acquiring the
(The REPORTER laughs. MRS. BLACK-
WELL, LADY MARJORIE, and BARKING
have fallen into various attitudes.)
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 99
Edith, you must go and dress at once.
And I must ask you to excuse us, Mr. Mr.
I should merely say that Lord Tredbury
appeared greatly embarrassed when the question
was put to him, and remarked that his visit had
no mysterious object whatever.
You would make a success as a journalist,
Oh, by jove, you aren t writing that !
This is becoming painful, I should say. Grace,
I think I ll take a turn with with Tredbury
Edith is so mischievous, you must pardon her.
Oh, if John were only here ! He is never here
ioo THE TITLE-MART ACT n
when I want him, and always when I don t. I ll
get Larry Pepys.
(Exit into the house, Left. BARKING
and MARJORIE cross over, Right. As
they are about to exit the REPORTER
slips down on the grass and levels his
camera at them. Just as he is about
to snap them, EDITH, who is beside
him, by a dejt Jiu Jitsu movement
throws him oft his balance, and very
nearly upsets him. MARJORIE and
BARKING exit, lower Right, without
I don t think I d take pictures if I were you,
(Regaining his feet, ruffled and aston
ished. Staring at her, rubbing his
Did you do that?
Yes. There s no one else here to do it.
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 101
Great Scott ! How in how did you do it ?
It s very simple only one has to be a little
careful not to break the other person s collar
(Rubs his shoulder.)
I I feel as if a paving block had hit me.
I m sorry. I tried to be as gentle as I could.
(Begins to laugh, admiringly.)
I don t care to get into trouble with you, Miss
It won t be necessary, I hope.
Won t be necessary !
102 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
Not if you do what I tell you. You mustn t
publish anything about myself or my family,
or about Lord Tredbury.
But what am I to say to my paper?
Telegraph them that you were unexpectedly
injured in the performance of your duty. Go
back to the village, and if there is any news, I
promise you you shall have it. Good-by, Mr.
Well, I ll risk it, for you. I ll call to-morrow.
(As he exits, upper Left, PEPYS saunters
Hello, Edith, not dressed yet? Your father
and Hiram Peters have just driven up with a
bunch of game cocks, and if I m not mistaken,
your father has the real Tredbury with him.
(Looks around, Left.)
They are coming now.
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 103
I must go, Larry, remember I m an actress
for the present, unless he has found out from Dad.
(Waves his hand, laughing.)
All right. You re a vixen.
(Exit EDITH, lower Right. Enter,
upper Right, from behind the corner
of the house, MR. BLACK WELL in
his linen duster, LORD TREDBURY,
and HIRAM PETERS, followed by a
powdered FOOTMAN holding out gin
gerly a small coop of game cocks.
During the following scene, TRED
BURY peers around into the house,
as if looking for EDITH.)
Here we are, Mr. Barking. Make yourself at
home; this is my house. Come on, Hiram.
Hello, Larry, I want you to know Mr. Barking.
Mr. Barking, Mr. Pepys.
(The two men shake hands, PEPYS
smiling slightly with quiet amuse
104 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
You know Hiram Peters, the sheriff of Carroll
(PETERS and PEPYS shake hands.)
Hiram and I were pals before any of this torn-
foolishness was ever dreamed of. This isn t
what we used to call a camp, eh Hiram ? Used
to fancy chickens then, too. I guess that s the
only youthful passion we ve got left.
(Solemnly: awed by his surroundings.)
The child s the father of the man, John.
(All this time the FOOTMAN is gravely
but gingerly holding the crate. HIRAM
peers into it.)
Well, Larry, I drove around by the wharf, and
there was Mr. Barking, and night coming on.
Grace left him there stranded. What do you
think of that ?
(PEPYS makes a comical gesture.)
It s a good thing I reserved one wing of this
"camp" for my own guests. I don t care a
doughnut whether they ve got titles or not.
(Putting his hand on TREDBURY S
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 105
I said to him, "Just jump into the buggy between
Hiram and me, and come up, and you needn t
ever see Mrs. Blackwell and her house parties."
My guests generally don t. What s the house
party doing to-night, Larry?
Going to dine at the Townsends , I believe.
That s good that s capital. We ll have the
place to ourselves and dine out here on this porch.
What do you say ?
Here, you, just tell the butler to set the table
for two out here, right away.
Very good, sir.
(Sets down the crate, and exits, Left.)
io6 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
I never can get used to these flunkeys. Lord,
Larry, didn t he look funny with that crate of
chickens? Eh, Hiram?
(Shaking his head.}
Wahn t what you d call a natural affinity.
(Picks up the chicken coop.}
Guess I ll take em along out to the barns. I
reckon if your wife was to find me here, on the
porch, she d get tarin mad.
Hold on, Hiram, I ll go with you. I m afraid
those cocks might accidentally get to fighting,
and you know I won t have that.
(Enter BUTLER and FOOTMAN to set the table.
When Mr. Barking gets ready to go up, show him
to the room next to mine.
Very good, sir.
(Exit HIRAM, carrying the chickens, and
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 107
(Handing his cigarette case.)
Have a cigarette Mr. Barking.
(Looks at him keenly, but with a slight
Thanks very much.
(BUTLER and FOOTMAN busy themselves
setting the table.)
(After a pause, which is a trifle awk
ward, both men lighting cigarettes.)
Pretty place, isn t it?
Ah, very -
Do you happen to know whether Miss Dotty
Davenport is staying here? Mr. Blackwell didn t
seem to know much about her. He says he doesn t
ever see his wife s guests.
(Exit BUTLER and FOOTMAN, having set
- I0 8 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
(Trying to be solemn.)
What the devil am I to say -
(Peers ofj Left: relieved.)
I believe there is some one coming. Excuse me.
(Strolls off to upper Right and looks over
balustrade toward the lake, TRED-
BURY looking ajlcr him, as EDITH
enters, Lejt, dressed in a very simple
Ah, there you are ! I was just trying to find out
from that chap if you were here.
If I was here?
I thought you might have been chaffing me;
Mr. Blackwell didn t seem to know much about
you. I came up to see you, you know.
How in the world did you get here?
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 109
Oh, Mr. Blackwell had pity on me. He s a
deuced good sort. He brought a sheriff up with
him and they talked chickens all the way. It
seems he picks his own guests without regard to
He seems to have some such prejudice.
Aren t you afraid of Mrs. Blackwell?
I m to keep on the other side of the house, you
know. But when am I to see you?
I ll give you a piece of advice. Don t let Mrs.
Blackwell see you here to-night, at all events.
If you like, of course. But why?
i io THE TITLE-MART ACT n
She d be very angry with me. And I m -
on her side of the house, you know. If you see
any one coming, you must run.
How about that chap?
Mr. Pepys. Oh, he s in my confidence. He s
an old friend.
Of course not.
I say when shall I see you ? Wouldn t it be
jolly if I were to dine here,
with you, instead of the old party?
Very, but I think you are rather cool to come
up after you ve been snubbed. What would you
have done if if Mr. Blackwell hadn t found
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART in
Oh, I should have managed. Tell me, when
am I to see you?
I ll come to the window and wave to you once
in a while. You ll have a very good time with
the "old party." He plays golf, you know, and
you might teach him Jiu Jitsu. Good-by.
Yes. Some one s coming, you must go.
To to your own wing.
But when am I to see you?
Never if you don t obey me. Come, I ll
show you the way.
H2 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
(Exit, upper Left, followed by TREDBURY.
Enter, lower Left, BARKING and MAR-
But I say, the beastly freedom of these chaps.
I didn t at all count on having a reporter.
You dealt with him very cleverly. I can im
agine you treating aspirants for office like that
(Looking up at him.)
you are Prime Minister.
Prime Minister, I say; I can t quite tell you
what a strange effect you have on me, Lady
Marjorie. You quite make me tingle with er
(Enter, Left, EDITH and MRS. BLACKWELL, and
MR. PEPYS comes forward.)
Dear Marjorie, have you got a shawl?
(Seeing the table set.)
Who s going to dine here?
(EDITH laughs, and looks at PEPYS.)
ACT H THE TITLE-MART 113
Dad has Hiram Peters with him.
Hiram Peters! John has the most senseless
ideas of equality. To think of dining here with
I wish I were going to, he s much more in
teresting than Grant Townsend.
Edith, you re positively anarchistical. Why
did you put on that gown? It makes you look
like a village belle. And where are your pearls?
I m going to paddle Lord Tredbury across the
lake. You may go in the launch.
I suppose you wouldn t be happy unless you
were exercising. And it will be a new experience
ii4 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
for Lord Tredbury an Adirondack canoe at
sunset. Don t be late !
(Exit, Lejt, MRS. BLACKWELL, PEPYS,
You seem to be quite intimate with Lady
By jove, she s jealous !
Yes, I ve always been fond of er of Mar
jorie, you know.
(Lights a cigarette.)
Interesting if true ! But let s go down to the
lake. If you have any money in your pockets,
take it out and put it in your lap.
I say, would you mind telling me the reason?
And, by the way, don t smoke your cigarette on
one side, even for an instant. I hope you swim
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 115
Oh, by jove, is it as bad as that ?
Then you could rescue me. Wouldn t that be
romantic? The lake is fed by springs, and the
water s deliciously cold.
(Enter BUTLER and FOOTMAN.)
If I d known that now, I d have worn a bathing
I think I can manage a canoe I used to row a
bit at Oxford, you know.
(Exit EDITH, upper Lejt, followed dubi
ously by BARKING.)
(Setting dishes at a side table.)
I s y, Stetson, e s a rum one for a lord, e is.
E ain t got no cornets nor nothin on is shirts.
An the other one, Mister Barking, did you ear
im a-callin of Miss Edith Dotty Davenport?
n6 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
She s allus up to some devilment, Lord bless
er. If it wasn t for er, I wouldn t stay in this
ouse a blessed minute.
(Enter, Right, MR. BLACKWELL and at the same
time, Le}t y LORD TREDBURY.)
Oh, here you are, Barking ! Sit down.
(Sits down at table, and waves TREDBURY
to a seat opposite.)
Well, this is cosey, ain t it, all by ourselves, with
that cussed house party out of the way?
(BUTLER and FOOTMAN begin to serve
That s right. These house parties never turn
over till ten, and then some of em breakfast in
bed, a slovenly habit, sir. I always got up
early shouldn t be where I am now if I hadn t.
This place is glorious in the morning, sir, glorious.
We ll breakfast here about seven o clock, sav.
How does that strike you?
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 117
Good. At seven-fifteen my buggy will be at
the door and I ll show you this country. We ll
make a day of it. I ll drive you over to Ead s
Centre, and let you see the house where I was
You re very kind.
Not at all. Then we ll go to Walker s Corners,
and I ll show you where I made my first start in
life, sweeping out a store. Store s there yet.
I daresay your own father began that way.
You mustn t have me on your mind, you know.
I m quite content here er keeping out of
the way of the house party.
Glad to do it. I want you to enjoy yourself.
You found your room all right did Stetson
ii8 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
Miss Davenport showed me. I am next to
you, I think.
Who the devil is this Miss Davenport, and how
did she know?
(BUTLER and FOOTMAN turn their backs
She appeared somewhat familiar with your side
of the house.
I never saw the woman, sir; I give you my
word I never saw her.
(Polite, but unbelieving.)
I found the view very fine from my window.
I d like to know what this Davenport woman
has got to do with my rooms.
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 119
I think that she, too, rather liked the view
from that side.
She s a designing hussy, sir, I warn you to be
careful. But you won t have much chance to
see her. I confess I don t grasp the principle
on which these house parties are made up, an
actress, a lord who hasn t anything but mortgages
to his name, and I daresay wants to marry my
daughter. By thunder, he shan t have her, sir.
A plain business man, such as you, sir, is good
enough for me. I ve heard all my life of your
father s china plant, and I ve a great admiration
for any one who can build up such a concern.
I d like to know something of the details of the
business. I suppose it s incorporated?
Oh, yes, thoroughly incorporated.
What is the amount of your capital?
The fact is, I don t quite remember.
120 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
Don t remember?
You see, I m er in Parliament. My
father rather wanted me to be a public man.
A great mistake. I d have put you in the busi
ness. Now, for instance
(Exit BUTLER, and enter, Right, in a
leisurely fashion, HIRAM.)
Why, Hiram, I thought you d gone home.
Changed your mind? That s good. Sit right
down here and have some dinner.
No, I didn t come for that. Say, John, that
little black and red cock we both liked has got
kinder mixed up with the mottled one.
Thought ye might be interested.
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 121
How long has this been going on ? Excuse me,
Mr. Barking, I ll be back presently.
(Exit, precipitately, Right, carrying his
Kinder thought he d like to know.
(They both look after him. It is now
deep twilight. Unperceived by either
of them, BARKING, dripping, bedrag
gled, wet to the skin, carrying his
coat, passes along the terrace back
of the loggia, from Right to Lejt,
You don t seem to take much to chickens, Mr.
(Exit Right. TREDBURY sits down.
Voices and a commotion are heard
within the house, off Left, and enter
EDITH, lower Left. TREDBURY rises
in astonishment. Enter, Left, BUTLER
and FOOTMAN, showing signs of mer
Isn t it too bad ? Lord Tredbury fell into the
THE TITLE-MART ACT n
and there s no way of my keeping my dinner en
gagement at the Townsends . They re telephon
Tredbury has fallen into the lake !
Oh, I fished him out with the paddle. You
see he was so sure that he could manage a canoe
that I let him get in first. Perhaps I shouldn t
have done it. He s gone up to change his clothes.
I m afraid they re ruined, and he can t afford to
get any more, poor man; his tailors won t give
him any more credit.
(Glancing at the vacant seat.}
May I have some dinner? I m famished.
(Sits down in MR. BLACKWELL S chair,
opposite to TREDBURY s, and BUTLER
hands her a dish.}
Mr. Blackwell s called away to a cock fight.
I hope it lasts forever.
A cock fight?
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 123
Providence, assisted, I suspect, by Hiram, has
mixed up the black and red game cock with the
mottled one. By jove, Dotty, Providence has
been more than decent to shuffle off Tredbury
into the lake, too, and transform me from an out
cast on a wharf into Aladdin s palace, dining with
(Hysteric signs of merriment from the
BUTLER and FOOTMAN. TREDBURY
lifts his glass.)
Let s drink to the absent.
(Looking at him critically.)
You re cleverer than I thought you were. Of
course, that isn t saying a great deal.
(To the BUTLER.)
Fill Miss Davenport s glass.
(BUTLER has a spasm.)
I don t care for wine, it puts one rather out
of condition. But we might send some up to
Lord Tredbury. I hope he won t take cold after
124 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
It serves him jolly well right.
(Looking at her admiringly.)
Ton my word, Dotty, I believe you did it on
I believe you did, so that we two could have an
evening together. By jove, I d like to have seen
him pitching into the water. How did you
By letting him do it himself. That s all one has
to do with men they ll drown themselves if one
only provides the water
(Looking across at him.)
or the wine.
You ll catch it rather when Mrs. Blackwell
comes home and finds out that you ve wet
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART
Well, I hope the water didn t hurt his title any.
That s the main thing, and it s still here. Water
doesn t harm titles, does it?
Mr. Blackwell was awfully squeamish about
your showing me to my room.
Who told him?
I had to, he asked me. By the way, I said you
seemed to know quite a bit about his side of the
house, and he swore by all things he d never
heard of you. The old chap was quite worked
up, vowed he took no stock in the noblemen and
actresses and all that sort of trash his wife had
here. What are you laughing at now?
I m very fond of Mr. Blackwell.
Do you know, I thought he was foxing. He
protested too much. But really, I can t see what
126 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
there is in the old boy to attract you. He s a
good sort, and all that, of course.
I love him
(Starting back in his chair.)
Oh, come now, Miss Davenport
as a father, of course.
Why does he deny it?
He probably thought you might doubt the
quality of my affection. He ll be back presently,
I ll prove it.
(The servants put the coffee on the table
and exit, Left.)
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 127
I have a piece of news for you. You had
better be careful, Mr. Barking Lady Marjorie s
Marjorie here ! Marjorie ! You say she s here.
How the how did she get here ?
She came by way of Ead s Centre, I believe.
You seem to be quite intimate with her, in
spite of the fact that she only saw you once
when everybody was leaving and all that.
Are you quite sure that there hasn t been some
little affair? How am I to know she wasn t
deceiving Lord Tredbury?
Ton my word, Dotty, there s nothing of that
kind. Oh, I swear it. Nothing of that kind.
I wouldn t marry her not if she were the
granddaughter of all the royalties in Europe.
Don t you believe me?
Well, I ve seen her, and that makes me rather
inclined to. I don t like your calling her by her
128 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
It was only because, well because Tredbury
does. What a nasty, characteristic thing for
Marjorie to do to leave Newport and come here.
What the deuce could have put her up to it ?
Her hosts moved out, I suppose. I believe
you re afraid of her.
I? Oh, no. Where is she now?
She s gone to dine at the Grant Townsends .
Would you mind telling me what happened
when Tredbury met her?
Well, she seemed rather surprised
Did she, eh? And he?
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 129
He seemed considerably surprised. That was
all. They talked awhile, and if I remember
rightly Lady Marjorie said a number of
pleasant things to Tredbury about you. That
you were to be Prime Minister some day.
(Breaking into laughter.)
Prime Minister !
(Suddenly becoming sober.)
Oh, did she? Nice of her, I m sure. Don t
let s talk about her any more, time s too short.
Dotty, how long are you going to stop with Mrs.
Oh, indefinitely. How long are you going to
stop with Mr. Blackwell?
Until he puts me out. I m afraid that ll be
rather soon when he finds out what great
friends we are. Do you know, Dotty, I ve
never had precisely the same feeling about any
one that I have about you. We ve the same
sense of humor, and all that.
Could you care for me if I didn t have any money ?
130 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
I haven t enough imagination to answer. The
question is : Could you care for me if you didn t
have any money ? That s always what a woman
wants to know.
Dotty since I met you, since
Since you wrestled with me.
I m not jesting. Since I met you, you ve
Dotty the whole world has changed.
(He reaches across the table for her
hand. She withdraws it.)
Dotty, listen! Since I met you to-day you ve
become everything to me. What are you think
I m wondering what you had before that.
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 131
(Critically: looking at him.}
There are many things about you I don t
Well, first of all, your passion for actresses.
Ah, but it isn t a passion for actresses, you
know. I scarcely know how to describe it. I
should have the same feelings if you were er
Why do you say that?
Well, yes, only if you were. an heiress, you d be
Unattractive, hoidenish, impossible !
i 3 2 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
Instead of the dearest little girl in the world.
I don t like being called little.
The old chap will be coming back now and
making a row. When can I see you? He
wants to take me off at some beastly hour to
morrow morning to Ead s Corners, or some place
like that, in his buggy, to show me the spot where
he was born. I believe he wants to keep me away
from you. I wonder what he d say if he knew?
How much I cared for you.
(Glancing off, Right, across the lawn,
Here he comes now. We might ask him.
ACT II THE TITLE-MART 133
Dotty, what the deuce are you going to do?
(Enter, upper Right, MR. BLACKWELL in his
shirt- sleeves, carrying his coat. He pauses
when he sees EDITH, who runs to him, and
they talk at the back 0} the stage in dumb show
for a moment. MR. BLACKWELL pats EDITH
on the cheek and exits, upper Lejt.)
(Returning and resuming her seat:
He ll be down presently. I told him I d eaten
his dinner, but he doesn t seem to care. He says
there is plenty more, and that the mottled bird
Dotty, I don t at all like his tapping your
cheek. You er don t know these old chaps
as well as I do.
I know this "old chap" better than you do.
134 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
(Sulkily: sitting down.}
Of course it s none of my affair, but why did
he tell me he didn t know you ? He s a sly old
fox. I think he knows you rather well.
I can t make him out. He didn t seem to mind
my being here with you.
See here, Dotty, he ll be coming back, now.
When shall I see you? Can t you see that I m
mad about you ?
Yes, I can see it.
I m quite ready to chuck everything and stay
in America and follow you round.
What would you chuck?
China, I suppose.
If you chuck china, it breaks, doesn t it ?
THE TITLE-MART 135
Dotty, listen! Why do you torment me?
(Reaching for her hand.)
I love you -
(Enter MRS. BLACKWELL, upper Left, and comes
around behind TREDBURY. The lights are
burning very low on the table, and when MRS.
BLACKWELL sees TREDBURY reaching for
EDITH S hand, she pauses and coughs at some
distance behind him, mistaking him for BARK
Well, here you are. You got word in time that
Adelaide s grand-aunt died. I supposed you had.
We went all the way over there, and the butler
met us at the landing with the telegram in his
hand, and we haven t had any dinner, and we re
almost starved. Dear Lord Tredbury, I m so
glad you weren t put to such inconvenience.
(Rising, greatly flustered.)
Er thanks. I ve dined quite comfortably,
(An expression of horror crosses MRS.
BLACKWELL S face when she recog
nizes him, and she backs away.)
We had er just reached the coffee.
3 6 THE TITLE-MART
(Ignoring him her -voice shaking with
anger: to EDITH.)
Where is Lord Tredbury?
The last I heard of him, he was changing his
Changing his clothes?
Yes. He got wet. It didn t hurt his title any.
He was quite careless getting into the canoe.
(With inarticulate anger.)
(Pushes an electric bell: turns to TRED
And what are you doing here, may I ask, sir?
(Hugely embarrassed, glancing at EDITH.)
Dining with Miss Davenport.
ACT ii THE TITLE-MART 13?
With Miss Davenport? With whom?
(Waves his hand helplessly at EDITH.)
With Miss Davenport.
When I saw you ahem wrestling with
Miss Blackwell, I had reason to suspect this
afternoon, Mr. Barking, that you were not in
your right mind. Now I am sure of it. At any
(Glancing at the champagne.)
that is the more charitable view.
(Petrified with horror.)
Wrestling with with Miss Blackwell !
(Stares wildly at EDITH.)
Are you are you
Oh, by jove !
138 THE TITLE-MART ACT n
Stetson, give his lordship my compliments,
and say that I trust he feels no ill effects from his
(Exit, lower Left, sweeping out.)
I m sorry, but I m the unattractive person
you read about. And I never acted in my life
(She drops him a courtesy, and exits,
lower Left, TREDBURY staring after
SCENE. The drawing-room of Mr. Blackwel^s camp, ft
is a large room, the wooden walls decorated with antlers,
and finished in a very costly manner. It has a great,
rough stone fireplace, middle Left, and a door on either
side. Over the fireplace is a moose^s head. In the rear
there are three long windows, like French windows.
Beyond these can be seen the terrace with balustrade,
like that in the second act, and the lake and mountains
beyond. Between two of the windows is a dainty writ
ing desk. Down Right is a long table on which magazines
and newspapers are arranged, and a telephone instru
ment. There is another window at lower Right which is
supposed to lead out on the loggia shown in the second
TIME : About ten o clock in the morning following the
AT RISE : LADY MARJORIE is discovered looking languidly
over the table of magazines, and STETSON, the butler,
stands respectfully in the middle of the room.
I don t see Truth.
We don t ave it in the house, your ladyship.
I4 o THE TITLE-MART ACT in
I might have known it. Or La Vie Parisi-
I beg pardon, me lady.
Where are the French papers?
Please, me lady, they are in Mrs. BlackwelFs
(Picking up a silver cigarette box.}
Stetson, I don t at all like these cigarettes.
(Puts one in her mouth, and STETSON
Can t you find Mr. Pepys? He has some good
I ll try to find him, me lady.
(Exit STETSON, lower Right. As he
exits, TREDBURY is seen peering in
through one o) the windows. He
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 141
starts, utters an ejaculation, looks all
around the room, and enters just as
LADY MARJORIE is going to the desk,
rear. They stop face to face.)
(Exclaiming, indignantly. )
I say, Marjorie, I don t see why you came here.
The Windhams were leaving Newport; there
didn t seem any other place to come.
(Looking around cautiously.)
Is any one else about?
Whatever s the matter with you?
Where s that ass ?
You mean your china friend who is representing
you for the time being, I suppose. He s been in
1 42 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
bed since eight o clock last evening, and I think
he s afraid to come down. Awfully clever of
you to send him up in your place, Treddy. But
you should have seen him when he first met me !
He had a frightful quart d heure.
Confound him! Between the two of you, I
shouldn t wonder if you d ruined my life.
(Sitting down: innocently.)
What have I done?
Why did you write me all that stuff about Miss
Stuff? What did I say? Sit down, Treddy,
and have a cigarette. There are some on the
table. You might give me another; they re not
(Angrily: handing her the cigarettes.)
No, thanks. You said Miss Blackwell was un-
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 143
attractive, hoidenish, impossible. By jove, how
(Lighting cigarette from the other one:
Isn t she? I thought she was. Of course,
men are not as good judges of the opposite sex
Impossible! Unattractive! She s quite the
most attractive girl I ever met.
Oh, come now, Treddy, you don t mean quite
that. Aren t you a bit dazzled by her millions?
I thought she was an actress until last night.
What made you change your opinion?
Reggie told me she was an actress. Con
founded clever of him! I must say that she
played the part dashed well.
144 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
Then Reggie ain t such a fool as he looks.
How is it all going to end?
I want you to tell me that.
You must be in love with her, or you wouldn t
be hanging around here like an escaped lunatic.
I want to see her, tell her I ve been an ass, and
go away forever.
It seems quite unnecessary, Treddy.
All you ve got to do is to fall on your knees, con
fess you re Lord Tredbury, and she ll accept you
before you have time to get up again.
Accept me! She d do nothing of the sort.
You re you re incapable of appreciating her.
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 145
And do you think I d tell her who I am after
what has happened? I d cut my tongue out first.
I simply want to apologize like
Like a china person. That s your role, isn t it ?
Like a decent chap, and then get out.
Where will you go?
I don t know I don t care.
Suppose you come to Lenox. I ll take your
friend Barking there.
I never want to see either of you again.
(Stops, listens, and goes toward the
windows in the rear.)
146 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
Where are you going?
I m I m not allowed in this part of the house.
(Coming back, and addressing her in a
I shouldn t at all wonder if you ve ruined my life.
(Exit rapidly, through rear windows.
MARJORIE sinks into a chair, and be
gins to laugh. Enter MRS. BLACK-
WELL, lower Left. She has a letter in
Why, Marjorie dear, are you down? And it s
only ten o clock. I hate the morning. You have
such a sensible custom in England of not facing
it till lunch time. All the worries and perplexities
of one s life come in the morning, and now I ve
had a letter from Sarah Hollingsworth that my
cook is advertised on the billboards. It s the
last straw, but I might have known that it would
Your cook advertised on the billboards ! What
in the world do you mean?
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 14?
Oh, as using some kind of porridge, or breakfast
food, as it is vulgarly called. Sally says that the
first time she saw it was from a car window,
on a huge board in a swamp. My name caught
her eye : " Mrs. John Blackwell s cook uses
Manna." Manna! Nothing is sacred in Amer
ica, not even the Bible, and poor, dear Antoine,
how he must relish being called a cook !
That is one of the penalties of belonging to the
It seems so strange to have an aristocracy
in a Republic. Doesn t the Constitution, or the
Declaration of Rights, or whatever you have, for
My dear, how very English you are ! Our
aristocracy is founded on republican principles,
and we have the right to be as arrogant as we
choose. Any one who has sufficient discrimina
tion and determination and sang-froid may belong.
We are not encumbered by duties or responsibili
ties, and we have a code of our own.
148 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
It s magnificent, but is it an aristocracy?
But there is no peerage or Almanac de Gotha.
How is one to tell whether one belongs?
By the increased consideration one receives
from people who profess not to believe in an
Ah, I see. And having one s cook on the bill
boards is an outward and visible sign, I suppose.
I am not saying that we do not lack finish. We
are a nation of barbarians, and we are suffering
How very odd ! I thought it was an English
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 149
Oh, we have it, too. What may one expect of a
people who make a cult of that crudest of sensa
tions, patriotism? Who keep Decoration Day
and the Fourth of July, for instance? And our
men seldom run off with other men s wives.
It isn t necessary, any more.
Have you seen Lord Tredbury?
(TREDBURY is seen peering in.)
(Turning: with interest.)
He s come down?
What did I say ? Oh, no, I suppose he s still in
ISO THE TITLE-MART ACT in
(Coming back, towards MARJORIE.)
I sent a footman twice to his room this morning
he left his valet at Tipton s, you know.
(Confidentially and tragically.)
My dear Marjorie, nothing will convince me that
Edith didn t upset him in the lake in order to
come back and talk with that vulgar Barking.
I ve an idea! Dear Marjorie, why wouldn t he
do for you?
Did you say that vulgar Barking?
Oh, well, you know, there s no getting around it,
he is vulgar. He s done the most abominable
things. Still, my dear, if he married you, you
and the Duke could do wonders with him,
and, of course, you needn t see a great deal of him.
You tell me he has a career in Parliament. He
is visiting Mr. Blackwell, you know, and I believe
I ll invite him to my side of the house.
I invite so few of Mr. Blackwell s guests to see
me. But, Marjorie, I really think you ought to
consider him. You ll pardon me for speaking
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 151
frankly, but the dear Duchess accomplishes such
marvels by frankness.
Invite him over by all means, Grace, if you
Dear Marjorie, do consider him. I do so want
to see you happily settled.
Dear Grace, how kind of you to consider me!
(Enter, lower Left, EDITH.)
Morning, Lady Marjorie. Hello, Grace !
(EDITH catches sight of TREDBURY as
he dodges away from the window, but
does not betray the fact that she sees
him. He makes frantic signs for her
to come out.)
(A little embarrassed.)
Edith, I m thinking of asking Mr. Barking to
(MARJORIE pretends to read.)
152 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
But I thought you didn t like him. You ve
been calling him vulgar and commercial and all
sorts of things. Why this change of heart ?
(Nervously: glancing at MARJORIE.)
Well, my dear, I suppose I was wrong, after all.
We must recognize the claims of commerce; we
must admit that new blood is a good thing. Mr.
Barking has behaved atrociously, but
But you said of him, Grace, that one cannot
make a silk purse out of baser materials.
Oh, my dear, it doesn t make so much difference
about the purse so long as it s full. Lady Mar-
jorie says he will make a name for himself.
Oh, I see !
(Glancing at LADY MARJORIE, who is
pretending to read.)
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 153
Oh, of course, if you are inviting him on Lady
Marjorie s account
Pray don t consider me. I am sure / don t
MRS. BLACK WELL
Dear Marjorie,you are so lacking in worldliness.
(TREDBURY, who has been peering in,
disappears behind the wall. MARJO-
RIE S back is turned to him.)
I have no interest in Mr. Barking whatever.
An interest in him might be rather a good thing
if it were paid quarterly.
Like alimony. Really, Edith, you are too bad.
You seem to have taken quite a fancy to him.
154 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
(Glancing at MARJORIE.)
There s quite a difference between wrestling
with a man and marrying him.
I m delighted to hear you say so.
(Suddenly catches herself: glancing at
Oh, pray don t mind me, Grace. / have no
intention of marrying him.
Then, since Lady Marjorie doesn t want to
marry him, why do you invite him?
(Pretending to read: bitterly.)
I suppose of course there is no other reason.
Well, of course, if neither of you want him, I
don t. I m sure I should always draw the line
at china. Only it wasn t very nice of you to
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 155
trifle with him that way, Edith. I suppose you
only did it to annoy me.
I am quite used to that.
(TREDBURY peers in.)
I am glad he offended you ; perhaps it will teach
you a lesson.
Dear Marjorie, I hope you are comfortable. The
tea you ordered from New York will arrive to
night. And isn t there any other little thing
you would like?
Perhaps if you would let me take the French
papers from your room, and if you would lend me
your secretary to answer my letters
Certainly, my dear, come with me. I do hope
dear Lord Tredbury hasn t taken cold. Edith,
I ll be down presently. I want to talk to you.
Very well, I ll be here. I ve got to write to
the vet, and I can t remember whether his name
is Hoskins or Hawkins. You don t happen to
156 THE TITLE-MART ACT m
Oh, my dear, how should I know?
(Exit, lower Left, followed by MAR-
JORIE. EDITH goes to the desk and
sits down. TREDBURY peers cau
tiously in, looks around the room,
enters, and stands be j ore EDITH.)
(Who has the tip of her pen in her
Good morning. I thought you d gone off with
Mr. Blackwell to see his birthplace. I m trying
to write to the vet, and I can t remember whether
his name is Hoskins or Hawkins. Which do you
think is the more likely?
Miss Blackwell, I ve come to say good-by to
I supposed of course you d gone.
I couldn t go without seeing you again.
Isn t it rather warm to start now?
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 157
Warm ! Did you say warm ?
I thought you were to start at seven, Mr.
Blackwell likes to get off early.
Er the fact is, we did start at seven. I
I ve been here three hours waiting for a chance
to speak to you. To tell the truth, I ve been up
practically all night.
It doesn t sound practical, it sounds dissi
pated. I hope my father didn t sit up with you.
Sometime, perhaps, you ll understand. But I
want to say that I made the mistake of my life.
I 5 8 THE TITLE-MART ACT ill
It must have been monumental. What is it?
I can t tell you ; I should be a cad if I did. I
don t blame you for despising me, Miss Black-
wcll. You served me jolly well right, and I
deserve it. And just a word : look out for that
chap ; I can t tell you why, but look out
for him. And I wouldn t have any more to
do with Lady Marjorie than I could help. She s
ruined my life.
Not quite, I hope.
(Taking a step nearer her.}
I should like you to know before I leave that
m y m y feeling for Miss Davenport was of the
sincerest nature. Good-by !
Mr. Blackwell will be very much disappointed.
I ve left him a line. The old boy is a trump -
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 159
I beg your pardon your father s a good sort.
I hated to do it. Some day you ll know why.
(With more fervor.)
Some day, perhaps, you ll forgive me.
(A noise of some one approaching is
heard off Right. TREDBURY looks anx
iously in that direction. Holds out his
Good-by Dotty !
(Goes swiftly to window, rear. Turn
ing, and pointing up towards the ceil
Don t marry that chap !
(Exit. EDITH goes to the window and
looks after him. Enter, lower Right,
How be you to-day, Edith?
Oh! Hello, Hiram!
Whar s the missus? She sent for me to see
about gittin some help to have a wall built.
160 THE TITLE-MART ACT m
She s upstairs. They send for you for every
thing, don t they, Hiram?
I am a kind of a handy man. That and bein
the sheriff keeps me purty busy.
But there ain t as many criminals in the county
as there used to be. How s that ther fool lord
I believe he s still in bed.
In bed! Well, I ll be jiggered!
(Looks at his watch.)
I don t take much stock in this here effete
(An uneasy pause.)
Say, Edith, I knowed you sence you was a
little girl. You ain t a-going to marry him, be
I don t think so.
Don t marry that torn-fool lord. If I had to
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 161
marry one of them, I d take Barking, durned if I
(Going up to HIRAM, pushing back his
coat, and taking hold of the shield on
Hiram, would you arrest anybody if I asked
Guess I would! Anybody done anything?
That Mr. Barking you were speaking of is
about to make his escape.
I ll be jiggered. He was a nice appearin
feller. What s he done, looted the house ? Took
Not exactly that, but he s a fraud, and I have
reason to suspect he is going to try to take the
train at Balchville. I want you to keep an eye
on him, and if he tries to get away, bring him
back here, to me.
1 62 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
(Looking at his watch, excitedly.}
We ll have to go over to the Centre and git a
A warrant !
(Putting her hand on HIRAM S shoulder.}
Hiram, couldn t you possibly do without the war
rant? If you could only bring him back here
quietly, it would save a lot of publicity, you know,
and father hates publicity. Get him and bring
him back to me. I ll talk to him.
It s irregular, Edith. By godfrey, it might
bring on a war with Great Britain.
Hardly that. Hiram, won t you do it for me?
I ll promise you that it will go no farther. Bring
him back here to me.
(Looks at her and wavers.}
Wai, it s consarned irregular, but I ll do it for
you, Edith. I don t know what s gettin into
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 163
the place. I ain t arrested nobody for three
months. I ll chance it I ll git him.
(Starts jor the window and turns.)
Say, tell the missus I ll see her about that wall
(Exit. EDITH goes to the window and
looks ajter him, laughs, sits down at
the desk, and puts her pen in her
mouth. Enter MRS. BLACKWELL,
Edith, Lord Tredbury is up at last he s
coming down !
(Without looking up.)
You don t mean it.
(Begins to write.)
Edith, I want to talk seriously with you. Why
do you treat Lady Marjorie as you do? One
would think you had no manners.
You know it isn t the thing to have manners
except for horses.
164 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
Oh, do be serious for once; Lord Tredbury
will be down any minute.
(EDITH puts her hand on her heart.}
What are you doing now? But, as I was say
ing, Lord Tredbury may be down any moment.
Do be nice to him, I m sure you spilled him
into the lake on purpose. It will be all right if he
never knows it; and the aristocracy are dears,
they are so undiscerning.
(Bending over her letter and writing.}
Please wait a moment, Grace; I must get
this letter off.
Oh, that s just like you, writing to veterinary
surgeons when your life s happiness is at stake.
Sometimes you are so like your father that I want
to I eat you.
(Folds the letter, puts it in the envelope,
and closes it.}
There ! Now, what is it ?
O dear, we are wasting so much time and
I don t know what to say to you.
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 165
Perhaps I can say it, Grace. You want me to
marry Lord Tredbury, whether I love him or not.
(On the verge 0} tears.)
Edith, you have a positively brutal way of put
(Standing up and patting MRS. BLACK-
WELL on the shoulder. She has a
man s way 0} doing this kind of thing,
although she gives it a feminine touch.)
There, don t cry. I haven t any objection to
marrying Lord Tredbury.
(Gasping, and rising to her feet.)
i ve no objection! Edith! Do you love
What difference does that make ? Well, I don t
mind admitting that I am rather fond of him.
166 THE TITLE-MART ACT HI
Oh, my dear, my dear !
(Stares at EDITH, totally at a loss.)
Has he spoken already ?
I haven t allowed him to.
Oh, my dear ! And do you think he loves you ?
Of course that couldn t make any difference,
either. But I think he does.
(MRS. BLACKWELL makes a forward move
ment, and EDITH evades her.)
Please don t embrace me, Grace I hate to be
(Backing off and looking at her.)
Incomprehensible girl ! Edith, you re a dear !
(Enter, lower Left, MR. BARKING. He is dressed
in a rather louder checked travelling suit than
the day before, and he has a blustering manner
which betrays to the audience that he is nervous.
EDITH has resumed her seat at the desk, where
she is stamping and sealing her letter.)
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 167
(Stopping short at sight oj MRS. BLACK-
Ah, dear Mrs. Blackwell
(Coming forward effusively and taking
Dear Lord Tredbury ! I hope you slept well.
I hope you feel no unfortunate effects from get
ting wet I m so glad that the lake was cold, -
Englishmen and cold water go so perfectly to
gether. As I said to dear Marjorie, if the lake
had been hot, I should have worried about you.
But it was quite cold, was it not ?
By jove, I should rather think so!
I am so glad. I told the valet to put a lump of
ice in your bath this morning. I hope he did it.
Edith should have warned you about getting into
canoes the poor child has been so worried.
Really, her account of the accident was most dis
tressing, and I almost wept when she told me
how she saw your hat floating on the water, with
nothing in it. She said it looked so natural.
168 THE TITLE-MART ACT m
I say, did Miss Blackwell say that?
One notes the pathetic at such times. I hope
you ve had a good breakfast, Lord Tredbury.
The dishes were on the sideboard. We follow
the English custom of getting up and sitting down
as often as possible. I never could quite under
stand it with the servants around, but I suppose
the idea is that it gives one so much exercise. It s
(He has not perceived EDITH at the desk.
He has passed her, and his back has
been turned towards her. EDITH now
exits quietly by the rear windows.}
Er the fact is, I wanted particularly to see
Of course certainly Edith !
(She turns and perceives EDITH is gone.}
Why, she s gone. She was here only a moment
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 169
(Glancing around, uneasily.}
By jove, I didn t see her!
(Turning to MRS. BLACKWELL: impul
sively and jerkily.}
Mrs. Blackwell there is er there is
something I must tell you. I feel that it is due
to you to tell you.
I think I know.
You know you knew all the time ?
I am not so easily fooled as you imagine.
How you must despise me ! But really, it was
not my fault I was led into it.
(Smiling with comprehension.)
Oh, don t speak of them! Young men will
THE TITLE-MART ACT in
be young men, dear Lord Tredbury. What
would an aristocracy be without its debts ? That s
the trouble with us in America ; we pay our bills at
once, although we are beginning to see that this
(He starts to expostulate, but she silences
Let me finish. I can quite understand your
delicacy, and I honor it, dear Lord Tredbury.
Mrs. Blackwell, I entered your house in a false
light. I must explain.
I told you that I quite understood.
(BARKING looks at her blankly.)
I quite understand. Dear me, I wish that
French were still the Court language one can
express one s self so much better in French. I was
aware of your mission to this country when I
asked you to my house.
My mission ! Mrs. Blackwell, I must explain
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 171
It is not necessary. The fact is, your entrance
was quite opportune. I have been talking to
Edith, and I feel that I may say to you, quite
frankly, that I found her unexpectedly reasonable.
I will also be frank with you and say that I had
(Bewildered: sticking in his monocle.)
Fears ! Quite so.
Sometimes Edith has ridiculous fancies in
social matters, and when I saw her wrestling with
Mr. Barking, my spirits sank. One of the surest
ways for a man to win her heart would be to
wrestle himself into it. And yet you seem to
have won it without resorting to such violent
methods, Lord Tredbury.
I I ! I won her heart ?
Your confusion does you credit. I have
spoken to Edith. She is anything but indifferent
I 72 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
to you, dear Lord Tredbury, and she has con
fessed to me that you love her.
I love her !
There, you must tell that to Edith. It was
quite honorable to have spoken to me first. I
was so afraid that she was taking a fancy to that
(BARKING starts to expostulate.}
There, you are loyal to your friend but I under
stand. In these days when the aristocracy is so
hard pressed, it is their friends that are thrust
upon them. And now, you may find Edith; you
have my permission James. I hope you will
allow me to call you James. Don t be shy with
her. She is a problem, but if she is managed
rightly, she will turn out to be a fine woman.
She has already something of the English man
ner the English rudeness, one might say. It
is enough to begin with. She loves you, James,
I am sure of it. But I confess that I am as
tonished that it has come about so quickly.
Really, Mrs. Blackwell I say I had no
notion of it, upon my word I m overwhelmed.
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 173
Don t look so frightened. Why is it men are
always frightened ? Here she comes ! Now do
be courageous James.
(Exit, throwing him a kiss.)
Oh, my God she loves me ! I might have
known it. Why was I such a fool? I might
have known it. What am I to say?
(Enter EDITH, unconcernedly. She looks at him.
He puts up his monocle and backs away from
Er ahem ! Er ahem !
Why, Lord Tredbury ! I m afraid your wetting
didn t improve your throat any. I m so sorry.
Er I have a far worse affliction than the
throat, Miss Blackwell.
(Approaching him with mock anxiety.)
Oh, tell me what it is, Lord Tredbury !
I 7 4 THE TITLE- MART ACT in
I say you you mustn t call me that.
What shall I call you?
I I have something to tell you, Miss Black-
well. I tried to tell Mrs. Blackwell er I
really can t say how distressed and yet ahem
- and yet how I er tingle with er
something I never felt before.
The symptoms sound familiar.
I say, do they? I came down this morning
resolved to tell your mother something, to tell you
something, and and I find I ve lost my head.
Have you missed it long?
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 175
(Looks at her, but is reassured by her
I can t describe how your presence affects me.
I didn t sleep a wink last night, not a wink, screw
ing up my courage to the sticking point.
(Gazes at her tenderly.)
I believe no man was ever in such a horrible
plight, really. You see I m all dressed to go away.
I found out about the train. I asked the footman
for a Bradshaw, and he brought me some kind
of a cocktail before breakfast, mind you. I
drank it I was in such a state.
(EDITH is laughing quietly.)
It seems I wanted the Baby Pathfinder. Now
I can t go. I hoped yes I hoped for your
sake, for both our sakes, that this would not come
about, Miss Blackwell Edith. You are too
true a woman to love me for my er title.
If it were otherwise, I would not say what I am
going to say.
(MR. PEPYS is seen strolling over the
terrace towards the windows. They
both look up.)
(Runs towards the door, lower Right,
turns and looks at him bewitchingly.)
1 76 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
Don t say it now. We might go canoeing
again this evening.
(Exit. BARKING crosses over, Right, and
stands looking after her. Enter PEPYS
through a rear window.)
Morning, Lord Tredbury. We missed you
Er yes the fact is, I went to bed early. I
was er quite exhausted.
Hope you re rested. You look fairly fit.
(Goes to the table, picks up a paper,
crosses over to a chair, Left, and sits
down. Unperceived, he gives BARK
ING an amused look from behind the
(Walks to the windows, rear, hesitates,
comes halfway back, looks at PEPYS,
who is apparently immersed in his
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 177
I say, Pepys, you re a devilish good sort of a
(Lowering his paper and smiling.)
A man of the world, and all that kind of thing.
A chap who would never er betray a con
I can t recall ever having betrayed one.
I say, I m in the devil of a scrape, don t you
know. I ve a great mind to tell you all about it
to er You seem so dashed level-headed.
What s the trouble, Lord Tredbury?
Well er the first trouble is, you know, by
j ove _ i n tell you. I m not Lord Tredbury.
1 78 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
(With pretended astonishment.}
Not Lord Tredbury ! Would it be impertinent
to ask who you are?
Not at all, my dear chap ; I m Reginald Barking.
(Looking around uneasily, as though
It s a long story. The other chap is Lord Tred
bury. He has to marry an American, and er
he had Miss Blackwell in mind for the position.
Oh, I see.
But mind you, he got a letter saying she wouldn t
do at all, and begged me to come up. I said,
" Suppose she falls in love with me!" "Oh,
no," said he, "no possibility. Bet twenty guineas
to one." Guineas !
(Backing off, with a gesture.)
Well, she has.
Fallen in love with you !
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 179
Yes. I m engaged to her. Mrs. Blackwell
er proposed this morning, and er told me
of Edith s affection for me.
Then you ve won your bet.
Oh, damn that ! There s the ahem moral
question. That s what troubles me. I m happy
to say I ll have a title of my own some day.
This has been a bit sudden, you know, but I
mean to stick by my word. Of course, my
governor will be horribly cut up he rather
wished me to marry into the aristocracy.
Your feelings do you credit.
Thanks, old chap. But now er how about
Mrs. Blackwell? I m afraid she ll rear a
bit, you know. I thought that you er as
a man of the world
(Seeing no encouragement in PEPYS S jace. )
Er what would you advise me to do ?
!8o THE TITLE-MART ACT in
Confess, my dear fellow. That s part of the
Yes. But, by jove, she s so erratic, you know.
She might do anything. You ll stand by me, old
chap. And then er it occurred to me last
night that Mr. Blackwell might take a shot at
me. I ve heard Americans were so handy with
revolvers, and all that.
You needn t be afraid of John; he isn t a very
good shot. No, take my advice and confess to
Mrs. Blackwell. The storm will blow over.
You re quite right to treat it as a joke. By the
way, here comes Mrs. Blackwell now. I d like
to stay here and see the fun if it wasn t for a
Oh, I say, delicacy be damned! Don t mind
that ! I say, I d like to have you here.
(He clutches PEPYS. Enter MRS. BLACK-
WELL, lower Left.)
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 181
I m so glad you ve taken a fancy to Larry,
James. He s a dear! But where is Edith?
(Looking at PEPYS.)
She has er stepped out. Yes, stepped
out that s it.
(Puts in his monocle, and gazes foolishly
off, lower Right.)
James, I hope you haven t quarrelled already.
(Aside, to PEPYS.)
I say, old chap, couldn t you drop her a hint?
I suppose James has told you, Larry. Yes, it s
When Lord Tredbury spoke to me this morning
it was a great shock, so sudden, and so little
time has elapsed.
(PEPYS turns away and laughs silently.)
182 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
But it is best to be sensible about these matters.
They are inevitable.
Oh, I say, Mrs. Blackwell, I must tell you
something about myself.
James, you are so painfully honest. Do let
youthful indiscretions be a closed book. We are
getting more and more sensible about that sort of
thing in America.
(The telephone on the table, down Left,
rings, and she goes to it. BARKING
gazes at her helplessly. PEPYS, with
his hand over his mouth, walks over
to the window, down Right, and stands
with his back to them during the fol
lowing scene, his shoulders shaking in
termittently with laughter.}
(Enter, quietly, by the rear windows, the REPORTER.
He has a rather large hand camera in his hand,
and unperceived by any one he levels it at BARK
ING, who is standing in an agonized position,
puts in the long stop, and photographs him.)
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 183
(At the telephone: simpering.}
Yes, dear, Lord TREDBURY is staying with us.
(Breaking in desperately.}
I say, Mrs. Blackwell, one moment.
(Waving him away with her hand, and
speaking into the telephone.}
He is just a nice, overgrown boy so English,
and he s actually trying to pull me away from the
(A pause. BARKING starts back.}
What s that?
Well, dear, how clever you are. Yes, you ve
guessed it Tredbury and Edith are engaged.
Oh, by jove, Mrs. Blackwell, you mustn t; you
know you mustn t. I ll tell you why if you ll
only listen! Oh, my God!
(MRS. BLACKWELL puts up her hand
and smiles absently, listening the while
to the remarks that come palpitating
through the telephone. In the rear
the REPORTER is writing rapidly, a
beatific smile on his face.)
184 THE TITLE-MART ACT m
(Into the telephone.)
Dear Isabel, I don t know Lord Tredbury
made his proposal in form this morning ; he was
so nice about it, so comme il jaut. I ll take Edith
to Paris in September. I think November s a
good month, but it s difficult for people to get into
town so early.
(A pause, during which BARKING stands
Dear Isabel, I don t wonder you re excited. I
couldn t help telling you. Good-by, dear, James
has taken such a fancy to me that he won t even
let me talk.
(She puts down the receiver.)
My God, Mrs. Blackwell, what have you done ?
(Looking up, beatifically.)
James, don t be ridiculous. There s no use
trying to keep a thing like that a secret.
(REPORTER coughs discreetly and MRS.
BLACKWELL, BARKING, and PEPYS
all turn and face him.)
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 185
What are you doing here again? You have
great temerity, sir, to return.
I was once a war correspondent, and my paper
telegraphed me last night to get the news at any
Well, since you are here, I may as well tell you
that a marriage has been arranged
Stop, Mrs. Blackwell, stop, I command you!
You must not ! I must see you alone. I insist
upon it. I demand it.
(Enter EDITH, lower Right.)
(Picks up his camera, and backs away
jearfally at sight o) her: to MRS.
Thank you, I think I know everything I
1 86 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
think I have enough. Good day, Mrs. Black-
(Exit, precipitately, by the rear win
(Aside, to EDITH, as she passes him:
Oh, you vixen !
What s the matter?
(Enter, lower Left, LADY MARJORIE.)
Whatever s the matter?
(Rushing to her, tearfully.)
Dearest Marjorie, don t you know? You
should have been told first, the very first, you are
such a near friend of Tredbury s.
(MARJORIE bewilderingly tries to dis
Lord Tredbury, I mean James
(Waves at BARKING.)
and Edith are engaged to be married. I am so
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 187
excited. It only happened a little while ago, and
I haven t had a chance to tell you.
(Dramatic, for once, pointing at BARK
Do you mean that man? Is he engaged to
Certainly. He made his proposal in form half
an hour ago and in such good form.
Great heavens, I shall go mad. I did nothing
of the sort. I have been trying to tell her all
morning, but she won t listen -
James, you can t mean that you have another
No, no, my God, no -
Then what are you saying?
1 88 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
I I I am not
I think he s been trying to tell you, Grace, that
he is not Lord Tredbury.
Er I was just coming to that.
Just coming to it? What do you mean? Is
it that you haven t yet come into your title ?
Precisely that s it. My governor s er
services er have meant so much to the
party, and all that sort of thing
Your governor !
(Glancing from PEPYS to MARJORIE.)
Has the man gone mad?
What are you talking about?
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 189
I was referring to my father. He was ill
advised enough to make a great fortune in er
well, in china.
(With an agonized shriek.)
China ! China !
(Overpowered by the enormity of the
news, she gazes at him speechless.)
(With an attempt to assert his dignity.)
My father s choice of a commodity may have
been misguided, but nevertheless by his industry
and ability he has built up a business that is
known wherever wherever
(He hesitates, seeing that MRS. BLACK-
WELL is paying no attention to him.)
Dishes are washed.
Tredbury is so shy, Grace so sensitive about
people thinking that he wants to sell his title
THE TITLE-MART ACT in
And when you took me for him he er
just backed out. And then you snubbed him,
You don t mean to tell me it was Lord Tred-
bury that I -
(At this point MRS. BLACKWELL S eye
lights on the telephone instrument on
the table, and, gazing at it, she sud
denly becomes transfixed with horror,
struck dumb, as it were. They all
move a step towards her anxiously.)
What s the matter, Grace?
The telephone !
I ve announced the engagement. I ve told
Isabel Sibley, and I m sure it s all around the
lake by this! Oh, what shall I do? And the
reporter! Larry, do try to catch him, and tell
him it s all a mistake. He s only had ten minutes
ACT in THE TITLE-MART
start. If you run fast, you can catch him before
he reaches the village.
(Exit PEPYS, rear.)
I hope he can run faster than that. And where
is Lord Tredbury? John had him here only
last night. I might have known him, he was
such a mauvais garcon.
(To BARKING, pointing at the bell.)
Ring the bell !
(BARKING obeys mechanically.)
Tredbury must be found!
(Enter BUTLER, lower Left.)
Stetson, do you remember a a Mr. Barking
who was visiting Mr. Blackwell?
(He points out of the window, indig
E was ere not an hour ago, Madam. I seed
a man a-hidin be ind the balustrade, and I goes
out to ask im is business, and e was gone.
Once I seed im a-hidin in the syringes.
He must be found, Stetson. Telephone his
description to the stables, to the lodge, to the
192 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
village everywhere. He must be treated with
every courtesy and brought back. Do you under
stand, Stetson? He is Lord Tredbury.
Very good, Madam.
The aristocracy is unaccountable! Oh, what
shall I do !
(As the BUTLER exits Left, he runs into
MR. BLACKWELL in a linen duster.
MR. BLACKWELL exclaims, BUTLER
begs his pardon, and exits. As MR.
BLACKWELL recoils from the shock,
his eye lights on BARKING, and at the
same time MR. BLACKWELL puts his
hand to his hip pocket. BARKING
exits precipitately, lower Left, and
MR. BLACKWELL produces a handker
chief from his pocket.)
(Looking after BARKING in astonish
Is everybody crazy? I just met Larry Pepys
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 193
going like a madman at hare and hounds. He
wouldn t pay any attention to me. I never saw
him move faster than a walk in his life. And
why did he run away?
(Rising: not noticing BARKING S exit.)
John, has he run away? I was in hopes you
Had him ! Oh, you re talking about the other
one. That s what I came in for. Haven t you
got him? It wouldn t be the first time you d
enticed one of my guests away from me. I
thought you d be after him.
Oh, John, you don t mean to say you ve lost
him. How stupid of you 1
(With some heat.)
Stupid ! I don t see why you are so interested,
Grace, when you snubbed him. How was I
to know he wanted to escape 1 I went into
Fowler s chicken yard about half -past seven this
J 94 THE TITLE-MART ACT m
morning, left this Barking in the buggy, and
when I came out, he d tied the horse to the fence
Yes, skipped. Thank God he didn t take the
horse and buggy. I call that a durned mean
return for my kindness, when I was going to
show him the country and the house I was born
in. I ll never forgive him. He deceived me
went to bed last night before I had finished my
dinner so that he might be fresh for to-day s
(Snorts. Looks around and his eye
lights on MARJORIE. Sternly.)
But I have a notion who s responsible. Have
you any other ladies in your house party ?
(Interrupting: to MARJORIE.)
Then I ll thank you to keep out of my rooms.
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 195
Out of your rooms !
Yes, out of my rooms. The view is very fine
from my window, is it?
I don t know anything about your view.
Humph ! Of course not. I ll have you under
stand I m a respectable man, and not given to
intrigues. I won t have my good name ruined
by any woman, and I won t have any woman
talk about me familiarly behind my back.
(To MRS. BLACKWELL.)
You can have your lords and actresses, Madam,
as long as they are harmless tomfooleries, but I
stipulate they shan t interfere with me. When
the actresses come into my rooms, and talk about
the view from my window, out they go. I mean
it. Ask this Miss Davenport, or whatever her
name is, where Mr. Barking s gone. She can
tell you if she will.
196 THE TITLE-MART ACT m
(Towards the end of this speech, BARKING
is seen peering in through rear win
dows. M ARJORIE now walks out through
a rear window, her nose in the air. Is
seen to join BARKING, and they have a
short conversation in pantomime before
MRS. BLACK WELL
(Who has been fidgeting in horror. Run
ning to MR. BLACKWELL.)
John, there s some terrible mistake. You don t
know what you ve done.
(In an awed voice.)
That was Lady Marjorie Ticknor!
Well, I beg Lady Marjorie s pardon. I thought
you told me all the women were here. Where is
this Davenport woman?
By George, I have it ! Barking s gone off with
(Distractedly: going of} Left.)
Oh, I can t waste any more time with you.
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 19?
Everything s ruined now by your stupidity.
Something must be done !
(Exit, lower Lejt. MR. BLACKWELL
watches her go in astonishment, and
then turns to EDITH, bewildered.)
Well, this beats me ! I ve seen Grace and her
parties in a ruction before, but never to equal
this. Edith, you look sane. Tell me, what the
deuce is the matter?
(Putting her arms around his neck.)
Dear old Daddy, I ll tell you all about it. I
never meant to fool you.
Oh, it s some of your tricks. I might have
But don t you think it s a little dangerous to push
Grace as far as that? She s really in a pretty
bad way. What have you done you you
<98 THE TITLE-MART ACT m
Really, it wasn t my fault, Dad. That is,
most of it wasn t. It s so mixed up I scarcely
know where to begin.
(Enter FOOTMAN, upper Left.)
Please, Miss, Doctor Awkins appened to be
up at Mr. Townsend s and card about your mare.
E s in the stable now, Miss.
Daddy, wait till I come back, and I ll tell you
all about it.
(Exit, through rear windows.)
Where is this actress who s visiting Mrs. Black-
There s no h actress in the ouse, as I know of,
You re a darned fool, too.
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 199
(FOOTMAN still stands respectfully.)
What are you waiting for?
If you please, sir, a groom was returning from
the village with the mail and found Mr. Pepys
sitting by the road, all in a eat, sir, wet through.
E s taken im into your study. It looks remark
able like h apoplexy, sir.
Well, I ll be - I ll go to him.
(Exit, upper Left, followed by FOOTMAN.
At the same instant, BARKING and
LADY MARJORIE are seen looking in
at the windows, rear. MARJORIE enters
boldly, followed with some caution, by
BARKING. They come down centre.)
There s no one here.
For title-hunters, commend me to the free and
democratic American nation. These people mean
to have poor Treddy dead or alive.
(Looking up at BARKING.)
You had a narrow escape, rather.
200 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
I was quite defenceless, you know. There
was nothing better than a paper cutter at hand.
I was talking about the other danger. As
I said just now, I could have told you she was
a designing, cold-blooded girl, if I had dared to
Dared ! Oh, Lady Marjorie ! If you had only
given me a hint last night that I occupied even a
small niche in in your er thoughts !
How could I? You were in bed.
(Looking up at him, ingenuously.)
Mr. Barking, I hope you ll forgive me for talking
to you on the terrace just now like a grandmother.
I say, you don t look like a grandmother, and
er I don t feel as if you were.
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 201
Flatterer! Well, then, as I tried to impress
upon you, a man of your career, and your future,
should marry a woman of the world ; a woman of
tact, a grande dame, if you like, a person of whom
you would be proud when you become Prime
(A step towards her.)
Lady Marjorie .
(Without seeming to pay attention.)
She need not be rich necessarily, nor a
beauty, but she should have well friends at
court, who will help you to a title of your own,
when the time comes. A a duke in the family
goes a long way, you know, even in these days.
There, I ve said it !
Lady Marjorie ! When I saw you
(MARJORIE goes off, Left.)
Where are you going?
To tell my maid to pack. I really can t stay
with Grace after this, and that horrible Mr.
Blackwell has insulted me.
202 THE TITLE-MART ACT m
you are going on my account.
(Standing with her back to him, looking
over her shoulder, smiling.)
Let s call it national pride. It sounds better.
(Turns her head away, but does not go.)
(Taking a step or two after her.)
Oh, Lady Marjorie, if I only dared.
I thought you would dare anything.
I do. I dare! You are the one I have been
waiting for all my life. You little know it, but
you have sketched yourself as I have always seen
you in my heart !
(Runs to her, seizes her hand. Her
head is still turned away.)
Won t you look at me?
ACT in THE TITLE-MART
(Turns her head and looks at him.)
We ll talk about it at Lenox.
(Suddenly EDITH appears in the French
window, rear, and MARJORIE drops
BARKING S hand hastily.)
(Entering and smiling at them. To
It s much more appropriate than if you were to
marry me, isn t it?
(BARKING, hugely embarrassed, does not
I could have told you that Lady Marjorie
admired you tremendously.
Er admired me ?
It s quite evident why you didn t.
Quite. He was making love to me as Lord
THE TITLE-MART ACT in
And of course you couldn t afford to run the
risk of losing a title.
I felt that Mr. Barking couldn t afford to run
that risk either. That s the reason I didn t show
him this letter which I believe Lady Marjorie
wrote to Lord Tredbury.
(Produces jrom her pocket the letter.
MARJORIE recognizes it and starts
If you knew the very complimentary things
Lady Marjorie wrote about you in this letter, I
am sure you would be convinced.
I say, did she? I had no idea
(Looks slyly at MARJORIE.)
I don t think it quite honorable, let us say, to
read other people s letters.
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 205
(Looking at her.)
Neither do I.
I happen to know the contents because Lord
Tredbury read this letter aloud
Lord Tredbury read that letter aloud?
To Dotty Davenport. You were not the only
person mentioned, Mr. Barking.
(Looking at MARJORIE.)
There was something said about the unattractive,
impossible, and hoidenish Miss Blackwell. But
it s all quite true, so there s no harm done.
(MARJORIE and BARKING are speechless.)
If I had not had other indications, I should
have guessed from this
that you were not Lord Tredbury.
206 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
You knew I was not Lord Tredbury? You
knew all the time ? Oh, by jove !
I am going to give back Lady Marjorie her
letter, but I hope she will not tell you what is in
(A slight pause.)
It might turn your head.
(Hands MARJORIE the letter.)
(Takes it and crushes it.)
And now, if you will accept my congratu
(Starts forward and takes her hand.)
Upon my word, Miss Blackwell, you re a brick.
I I don t know what to say.
Don t say anything.
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 207
(Taking EDITH S hand.)
Edith, I m afraid I did you an an injustice.
I m afraid you did.
If I ever can be of service to you, in England
You are very kind. I shall remember it
if I ever go to England. And now, if you don t
object to my giving you both a tip, I think if
I were you I should take a walk in the pine
Er do you mind ?
(Hesitating: then deciding.)
Well, I ll go if you like.
(Exeunt MARJORIE and BARKING, lower
(A commotion is heard and HIRAM and TRED-
BURY, accompanied by MR. BLACKWELL, are
208 THE TITLE-MART ACT m
seen crossing the terrace, all talking, and ap
proaching the windows in the rear. Enter
these three, all talking at once, HIRAM carry
ing a heavy dressing case, TREDBURY a hand
bag, which each deposits as he comes down.
MR. BLACKWELL and TREDBURY are together,
HIRAM a little apart and behind them. EDITH
runs to upper Lejt where she remains, unseen
by the three.)
You thought my daughter was an actress?
Why the devil didn t you say Miss Blackwell
told you to arrest me? I wouldn t have men
tioned the ambassador.
(Who is apologizing to MR. BLACKWELL.)
Wimmen is awful critters to tempt a man,
John, you know that. But, by godfrey, he did
look like a crook when he was workin through
Easy Jones woods with that there sample case.
(Points to dressing case.)
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 209
So you re a lord ! I want to know ! I don t
mind shakin hands with ye, anyhow, and sayin
I m sorry. You ain t such a durned fool after all.
(Puts out his hand.)
(Taking it: laughing.)
Thanks, Mr. Peters. If you d only mentioned
who made the complaint, I would have led the
(EDITH disappears, upper Left.)
(Biting off a cigar.)
Hiram, I guess young people will be young
I won t deny I ve had a prejudice against titles,
too ; you may have gathered that from my conver
sation. There, young man, I like you, and you ve
owned up honestly. I ll forgive you. But she s
very dear to me, in spite of her tricks.
(Brushes his eyes. TREDBURY seizes his
hand, and wrings it in silence. Sud
denly a great squawking is heard in the
rear, as of a general cock fight in prog
ress, and MR. BLACKWELL and HIRAM
210 THE TITLE- MART ACT in
both exit through the rear window, pre
cipitately. EDITH comes in, upper Lejt,
unconcernedly, and stands a moment gaz
ing out oj rear windows after them.)
How shameful of the sheriff to neglect his duty !
Why has he left the prisoner alone ?
Miss Blackwell !
(Coming down and seating herself in a
large armchair; with mock dignity,
imitating a judge.}
Why has the prisoner been released?
May it please your Lordship, the complainant
didn t appear, you know.
Well, what have you to say for yourself? Why
did you run away?
It s no easier to confess now than it was before
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 211
I went. Of course, I ve been an ass, I don t
If you were only Dotty Davenport, I could tell
That isn t a proper way to address a a
magistrate. And, besides, I don t expect you to
incriminate yourself. I will give the prisoner to
understand that this trial will be conducted in all
By jove, I should say it was a trial.
(A noise is heard off. TREDBURY looks
And, by the way, I m not supposed to come in
this part of the house, you know.
Oh, you needn t be alarmed ; Mrs. Blackwell is
off looking for Lord Tredbury.
Yes. He escaped, you know. Mrs. Blackwell
212 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
is having the surrounding country searched; the
woods beaten. I shouldn t wonder if she d of
fered a reward for him, if produced alive. The
demand for titles is so great in America that we
never let one escape without an effort to recap
(Laughs uneasily. )
So he s run away. Oh, by jove ! And do you
mean to tell me they re chasing him? I hope they
give him a good, round thrashing. You wouldn t
mind telling me the immediate cause of his flight.
Well, I think he ran away for fear he would
have to marry me.
(Starting forward: in anger and amaze
For fear You don t mean that. You re
joking you couldn t love him.
Love is bourgeois; only the lower classes and
fools marry for love. We are learning better in
America nowadays our marriages are arranged.
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 213
You didn t agree to marry him. I know you
didn t. If a man were poor and needy and re
No. I didn t agree to marry Mr. Barking.
(With a sudden flash of understanding.)
Don t interrupt. Mr. Barking has already been
sufficiently punished. He is about to serve a life
sentence he is going to marry Lady Marjorie.
(Bursting into laughter.)
To marry Marjorie ! I m I m revenged.
(Coming forward impetuously.)
Ah, was there ever such a woman in the world as
you ! How could I have been such a fool ! I see
it now, you ve known all the time you knew
who I was when we met at the Post-office. I
loved Dotty Davenport. I would have followed
her to the ends of the earth. I plead guilty, but
that s my excuse. I love you, Edith
214 THE TITLE-MART ACT in
Aren t you afraid of being fined for contempt?
The court will adjourn.
(Seizing her hands.)
I throw myself on the mercy of the court.
Edith ! Have you nothing to say ? Can you
give me no hope?
Well I think I will give you a life sen
(Seizing her in his arms.)
And I will love you and serve you all my life.
(Trying to disengage herself and glanc
ing out, Right, where the loggia is.)
Here comes Grace.
(Looking at him, with laughter in her
She will think we have been wrestling again.
(Enter, lower Right, MRS. BLACKWELL. She
takes in the situation at a glance.)
ACT in THE TITLE-MART 215
Edith ! You ve found him ! Thank heaven,
those women won t have a chance to talk ! I ve
never been so relieved in all my life.
(Sinking into a chair and fanning her
Oh, James, come here. How could you have
been so naughty !
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