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Contents   Prologue   I   II   III  Epilogue


PROLOGUE

SCENEA dark room, the library of a house in a fashionable New York suburb. In the rear, french windows looking out on the lawn and the driveway in front of the house. On the left, a doorway leading to the main hall. On the right, another doorway screened by heavy portieres. Bookcases around the walls. In the center of the room, a table with books, periodicals, and a reading lamp on it.

  The room is in darkness except for the light from the hallway. The portieres on the right are cautiously parted and LUCY enters. She stops and stands motionless for a moment or so in an attitude of strained attention, evidently listening for some sound from the hallway. Hearing nothing, she goes to the table and throws herself into a chair beside it. She rests her head on her outstretched arms and sobs softly. Making an effort to control herself she dries her eyes hastily with her handkerchief, gets up, and walks nervously from the table to the windows and back again.

  She stands by the table for a minute staring straight before her, her expression betraying the somber thoughts which are passing through her brain. Then, with a quick movement of decision, she pulls out a drawer in the table and slowly takes a revolver from it. She looks at it with frightened eyes and puts it down on the table with a convulsive shudder.

  There is the sound of a motor from the roadway outside. LUCY gives a nervous start and looks quickly around the room as if searching for a hiding place. She finally hurries back into the room on the right, pulling the portieres together behind her. The noise of the motor grows steadily louder. At last the machine stops in front of the main entrance of the house, and only the soft purr of the engine is heard. The glare from the headlamps pierces the darkness beyond the french windows.

  Someone is heard walking along the hallway to the front door. The outer door is heard opening. There is a brief murmur of the voices of chauffer and the maid. Then the door is closed again. TOM's voice is heard calling from the top of the hall stairs: "Is that the car?" The maid's voice answers: "Yes, sir.", and she is heard returning to the rear of the house.

  TOM and LEONORA are heard conversing as they come down the stairs in the hall. LEONORA's infectious laughter rings out. TOM appears in evening dress in the doorway, left, and looks toward the door at the right. He calls softly: "Lucy"; then takes a step forward into the room. LEONORA calls to him from the hall: "We'll be late." TOM makes a movement of impatience and raises his voice: "Lucy!"

  LEONORA(from the hallway) She's probably out in the garden mooning with Gab. Come on!

  TOM allows a muttered "damn" to escape him, and walks back into the hall.

  The outer door is again opened and shut. LUCY comes out from behind the portieres and goes quickly to the table. The sound of the limousine door being slammed is heard. A wild look of determination comes into LUCY's face and she snatches the revolver from the table. The noise of the motor increases in volume. The curtain starts to fall. The car outside starts. Closing her eyes tightly, LUCY lifts the revolver to her temple. The curtain hides her from view. As it touches the stage there is the sound of a shot.


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