JACK ARNOLD, Major of
Lieutenant of Infantry, U.S.A.
ROBERT WAYNE, Medical
SCENE—A corner in
the grill of the New York club of a large Eastern University. Six tables
with chairs placed about them are set at regular intervals in two rows of
three from left to right. On the left, three windows looking out on a side
street. In the rear, four windows opening on an avenue. On the right,
forward, the main entrance to the grill.
It is the middle of the afternoon of a
hot day in September, 1918. Through the open windows, the white curtains
of which hang motionless, unstirred by the faintest breeze, a sultry vapor
of dustclogged sunlight can be seen steaming over the hot asphalt. Here,
in the grill, it is cool. The drowsy humming of an electric fan on the
left wall lulls to inertness. A bored, middle-aged waiter stands leaning
wearily against the wall between the tables in the rear, gaping and
staring listlessly out at the avenue. Every now and then he casts an
indifferent glance at the only other occupant of the room, a young man of
about thirty dressed in the uniform of an officer in the Medical Corps who
is sitting at the middle table, front, sipping a glass of iced coffee and
reading a newspaper. The officer is under medium
height, slight and wiry, with a thin, pale face, light brown hair and
mustache, and grey eyes peering keenly through tortoise-rimmed spectacles.
As the curtain rises there is a sound of
footsteps from the entrance. The waiter half-straightens into an attitude
of respectful attention. A moment later Herbert Roylston enters. He is a
brawny young fellow of twenty-seven or so, clad in the uniform of a first
lieutenant of infantry. Blond and clean-shaven, his rather heavy,
good-natured face noticeably bears the marks of a recent convalescence
from serious illness. Lines of suffering about the lips contrast with his
ever-ready, jovial grin; and his blue eyes of a healthy child seem
shadowed by the remembrance of pain, witnessed and not by them to be
Roylston stands at the entrance and
glances about the grill. The waiter starts forward with an
inquiring "Yes, sir?". The medical officer is engrossed in some bit of
news and does not look up. Roylston walks forward to his table and glances
at the other curiously. Then the paper is put down and the eyes of the two
men meet. A look of perplexed recognition comes over both their faces.
a boyish grin) I know you. Wait a minute! (The other smiles.) Ah! Now I've
got it—Wayne, isn't it—Bobby Wayne? You used to room with Jack Arnold at
and this is—Roylston, isn't it? I met you here with Jack?
who. (The two men shake hands heartily, evidently greatly pleased at this
WAYNE—I'm very glad
to see you again. Sit down. Won't you have something to drink? (He beckons
to the waiter.)
thing. That's what I came in for—that, and to try and find someone to talk
to, and write a couple of letters. (to the waiter) Iced coffee, please.
(The waiter goes out.) Its a sure enough broiler in the streets. Whew! (He
mops his face with his handkerchief—then continues apologetically) I guess
I'm still a bit weak. You know I had rather a close shave, thanks to the Bosche.
can see by your face that you've been through the mill. What was it—shrapnel?
a grin) A touch of that in both legs; and afterward machine gun here and
here. (He touches the upper part of his chest.) They nearly had me.
(showing emotion) If it hadn't been for Jack—
Eh? You don't mean Jack Arnold?
sure do! He came out into No Mans Land and got me.
When was this—after Chateau Thierry?
Then you were the one he brought back—that exploit—
don't know about the one. I was a one, at any rate. (with enthusiasm)
Jack's got a whole caboodle of such stunts to his credit. I wouldn't dare
say that I—
I heard—they didn't give the name—but I understood it was the body of a
dead officer he risked his life to get.
I guess they did think I was a gone goose at the time; but I managed to
pull through. You can't put a squirrel in the ground. (The waiter comes
back bringing the iced coffee which he sets on the table. Roylston takes a
sip and sighs contentedly.)
waiter has resumed his post by the rear windows) Tell me about it, will
you, Roylston? The reports have been so meager, and I'm so damn interested
in all Jack does. You see Jack and I have palled together ever since we
He's told me.
WAYNE—But he's such
a rotten correspondent that, even when I was in France, I had to depend on
the war correspondents and the official reports for any news about him. So
it'd be a favor if you'd—
There isn't much to tell. We got caught in a bit of barrage half-way to
the third Bosche trench—we'd captured the first two and should have
stopped, but you get drunk with the joy of chasing them back and you don't
stop to think.
that was where I got mine—in both legs. I went down and couldn't get up.
The boys had to go back to the trench we'd just captured. They didn't have
time to do any picking up. I must have seemed dead anyway. I remember the
Bosche counter-attacked and caught hell. Then the lights went out
completely as far as I was concerned.
you've heard how Jack's company got cut off in that second trench, haven't
you? How the Hun barrage cut all communication between them and the rest
of the army? (enthusiastically) Jack's company held out for three days and
nights against all kinds of terrific shelling and counter attacks, without
support or relief, until the rest of the division advanced again and
caught up with them. Nearly every member of the company was either killed
or wounded—but they stuck it out! It was a wonderful example of what our
boys can do in a pinch!
sure was great stuff! I heard about that part of it afterward in hospital;
but at the time it all happened I wasn't especially interested in what was
going on around me.
it Jack came out to get you?
after the division pushed up and they were relieved.
That third night?
was at night, I know.
him with wondering admiration) Then—you were lying in No Mans Land three
days and nights—badly wounded?
I must have been, I guess. I didn't notice time much. I was sort of out of
my head with thirst and pain, or in a numb trance most of the time. You
know how one gets. (Wayne nods.) I'd see dark and light but—I didn't think
of anything at all—not even of death. (He pauses and then continues
shamefacedly.) Finally I came to in the dark. I heard someone screaming—damn
horribly! I listened and discovered that I was doing it—screaming at the
top of my lungs! Honestly, I was ashamed to death of myself. I managed to
get to my feet. I had a mad hunch to get back to our lines. Then a Bosche
machine gun commenced to rattle, and I felt a terrific thud in the chest—and
the ground came up and hit me. The Bosche artillery loosened up and a
shower of star shells made it light as day. I saw a man come running
through that hell straight for me. The air was fairly sizzling with
bullets but he kept right on, and then when he came close I saw it was
Jack. He shouted: Roylston, and hauled me up on his shoulder. The pain of
it knocked me into a faint. When I came to I was in hospital. (with a shy
grin of relief) So that's all I know about it.
had a frightful time of it, old man.
worse than the rest of the boys. We all have to take our medicine sooner
or later. But its lucky for me Jack saw me stand up that time.
WAYNE—You think he
a wry face) I hope so. I'd hate to think he heard me balling out there. I
guess they all thought me dead or they'd have been out looking for me
before that. (He drinks the rest of his coffee.) Well, I've got to toddle
upstairs and write—
minute, will you, Roylston? There's something I want to talk over with
you. It's about Jack—and perhaps you can help me.
(as the other hesitates) Something about Jack, you say?
first let me explain how I happen to be here at home. I'm not on leave,
and I wasn't sent back from France on account of
ill health, as you might think. At the base hospital over there I was
assigned to treating victims of shell-shock. I'd made quite a study of the
disease since it first became known and as a consequence was more
successful than most at treating it. So a few months ago when the sick
commenced to be sent home in appreciable numbers, I was ordered back here
to help on shock patients.
WAYNE—(with a keen
glance at the other—lowering his voice) And, this is strictly
confidential, of course, it appears from a letter I recently received, as
if Jack Arnold is likely to become one of my patients.
What! Not shell shock?
God! But there must be some mistake. Why Jack has the nerves of an ox!
Don't forget he's been in there three years now without a let-up—when you
come to count the two he was with the Canadians before he was transferred
to ours. That's a long stretch.
the last I remember of him he was A1.
WAYNE—It hits you
all of a sudden usually; besides, it's by no means certain in Jacks case.
The letter I spoke of was from a Doctor Thompson over there, one of the
heads. He wrote that Jack had been sent to the base hospital with a leg
wound, nothing serious in itself. But, knowing I was a friend of Jack's,
Thompson wrote to tell me Jack had been invalided home, and for me to
study him carefully when he arrived. His trouble seemed to be plain
nervous break-down, Thompson said, but still there was something queer
about the case he couldn't get hold of and he hadn't the time to devote to
individuals. So he left it up to me.
he give you some hint as to just what he meant was the trouble with Jack?
postscript evidently scribbled in a hurry. He wrote: "Watch Arnold—cigarettes!"—with
the word cigarettes deeply underlined.
ridiculous, doesn't it? Especially as Jack never smokes.
Oh, he did over there—a great deal. As I remember him he had one stuck in
his mouth all the time.
What? Why, when I knew him he wouldn't touch one on a bet. (The two men
look at each other for a moment deeply puzzled.) There's something queer
about it, evidently—from that postscript.
a moment) Oh, I guess it's just that your Thompson is one of those
Quite the contrary. He smokes incessantly himself. There must be something
in it. Thompson is one of our keenest diagnosticians.
No matter how sharp he is I'll bet he's all wrong about Jack. Why—hell—Jack's
made of iron. I've seen him in the trenches and I know. If he'd been shot
or gassed or—but shell shock—Bosh! Jack'd laugh
at that. (eagerly) But when do you expect him to get here?
WAYNE—Any day now.
I sure hope he arrives before I leave. I want to see him above all other
people in the world—to thank him, if I can, for my presence in our midst.
(impulsively) If you only knew how I feel about Jack! (inconsequentially)
You remember his senior year at college when he was AllAmerican half—and
his touchdown that won the Harvard game? (Wayne nods.) I was just a
Freshman then and you can imagine what a hero he was to me. (Wayne
smiles.) And then to go over there and find myself directly under his
command—to become his friend! It meant a devil of a lot, I tell you!
WAYNE—It must have.
then to cap the climax he saved my life when not one man in a million
would have tried it—and no blame to them, either! It was rank suicide. The
chances were a thousand to one against his coming out of it alive. (with a
grin) When I get started on that subject I never stop, so I guess I better
beat it to my letter writing. Be sure and let me know when Jack arrives, I
sure want to see him.
WAYNE—(as they both
stand and shake hands) I'll be sure to.
Well, so long for the present.
WAYNE—So long. (He
sits down again. Roylston goes out. Wayne drums
on the table with his fingers and stares before him, deep in his thoughts.
After a moment steps are heard from the entrance, right, and Jack Arnold
comes into the grill. He is a tall, broad-shouldered, and sinewy-built man
of about thirty with black hair and mustache. The sun tan on his strong
featured, handsome face has been faded to a sickly yellow by illness.
Lines of nervous tension are deep about his mouth and nose, and his cheeks
are hollow, the skin drawn taut over the cheek bones. His dark eyes have a
strained expression of uncertain expectancy as if he were constantly
holding himself in check while he waited for a mine to explode. His hands
tremble a little. He has a queer mannerism of continually raising the fore
and middle fingers of his right hand to his lips as though he were smoking
an invisible cigarette. He wears the uniform of a major of infantry.)
recognizes Wayne and calls out casually) Hello, Bobby. (He strides toward
WAYNE—(jumps to his
feet, nearly upsetting the table) Jack! (his face glowing with pleasure as
he pumps his friend's hand up and down) By all that's wonderful! When did
you get in?
into a chair) Sit down, you old scoundrel! I've been expecting to hear of
your arrival every day. (slapping him on the back affectionately) It's
certainly a sight for sore eyes to see you alive and kicking again!
glad to be back for a bit. I was rather done up in a nervous way.
Thompson wrote me.
uneasiness) Oh, he wrote you, did he?
WAYNE—Yes; said you
were coming back.
He's a fossilized old woman, your Thompson—fusses like a wet hen about
WAYNE—Yet he's one
of the best in his line.
Perhaps; but you'll not convince me of it. (He makes the peculiar motion
of fingers to his lips.) He got on my nerves frightfully with his
incessant examinations—pure rot, if you want my opinion.
WAYNE—(with a keen
professional glance at his friend's face—from
this time he studies Arnold as a patient) But, honestly, you do look as if
you'd been knocked out for a time.
No; fit as a fiddle. (vaguely) It's only the silence. (He again makes the
motion to his lips.)
appearing to notice this question—with sudden eagerness) Have you a
his case and offers it to Arnold) You're smoking now?
(He lights the cigarette and, drawing in a deep inhale, exhales it with a
sigh of relief.)
naturally? You didn't use to, you know—nary a puff.
ARNOLD—Had to over
there. (with sudden remembrance) I was forgetting—it's such a damn long
while since I've seen you, Bobby.
lot of things can happen in that time, what? (With a detached air, as if
he were unconscious of what he is doing, he puts out the cigarette from
which he has hardly taken more than a few puffs, and carefully puts the
butt into a pocket of his uniform.)
curiously) What—? (He suddenly thinks better of his question and stops.)
(as Jack stares at him) How's the wound in your leg?
ARNOLD—All O. K.
Only a scratch. (He again puts his fingers to his lips nervously—then his
eyes fall on the cigarette case on the table.) I'll graft another of your
fags, Bobby, if I may.
up) I went straight to your house from the dock. Saw your mother. She told
me I'd probably find you here. (with a display of affection) It's good to
see you again, Bobby, damn good! Like a tonic, by Jove! I feel bucked up
smile) I'm glad of that, Jack.
What times we used to have together, eh?
in the city when you came on from Baltimore—when
you were a grinding medical stude and I was a—(scornfully) scribbler!
managed to get any writing done over there?
frown) No. What's the use? It's not a thing one can write about, is it?
(There is a pause. Arnold mechanically puts out his cigarette and is just
placing it in his pocket when he looks up and catches his friend's eye
probing into his strange action. He immediately becomes conscious of what
he is doing and shamefacedly hurls his cigarette on the floor and stamps
on it.) Damn it all! (irritably) What are you staring at, Bobby?
must think me a thundering ass when you catch me in a childish act like
that—just like a kid on the streets "sniping butts". I can't seem to break
myself of the devilish habit—must have contracted it in the front line
trenches—saving up butts for an emergency when I'd be without a smoke. And
now I do it mechanically—(hesitates—then moodily in a low voice) whenever
the silence comes over me.
friend's embarrassment—soothingly) It's natural enough.
ARNOLD—(as if he
were talking to himself) There's something back of it I can't get at—something
that drives me to do it. (He shakes his head as if banishing some painful
thought, and producing an unopened box of cigarettes from each of his
pockets, turns to Wayne with a forced laugh.) Here I've got a full box in
each pocket and yet I'll bet I've been grafting yours as though there
wasn't one for sale in the whole world. It's a disgusting obsession. I've
got to break myself of it or people will think I've a screw loose
somewhere. It's up to you, Bobby, to call me down every time you catch me.
That'll do the trick. (Forgetful of the full boxes on the table he calls
to the waiter roughly) Hey, waiter!
out of his doze) Yes, sir?
ARNOLD—A box of
kind would you like, sir?
all those unopened on the table, Jack.
Yes—so I have—I was forgetting. (to the waiter)
Never mind about them now. (There is a pause during which Arnold presses
his hands to his forehead as if he were trying to focus his thoughts.
Finally he mutters in a low voice) It's the silence. That does it.
him keenly) That's the third time you've mentioned the silence, Jack. What
do you mean, exactly? What silence?
pause) Just that—the silence. It hits you when you're sent back home after
you've been in the lines for a long time—say a year or more without a
holiday. (He laughs mockingly.) A holiday! A rest period! Rest! Good God!
(He turns to Wayne excitedly.) Understand that I'm only speaking from my
own experience and my feelings may have no general significance. But I
believe they have. I've seen them verified in the faces of those men who
come back to the trenches after a leave at home—their expression of
genuine happiness at being back—Why, man, they look relieved, freed from
slavery! (He pauses for a moment, reflecting—then continues intensely.)
You've been hearing the rumble and crash of the big guns, the rat-a-pet rivetting of the machine-guns, the crack of rifles, the whine of bullets,
the roar of bursting shells. Everything whirls in a constant feverish
movement around you; the earth trembles and quakes beneath your feet; even
the darkness is only an intermittent phenomena snatching greedily at the
earth between the wane of one star shell and the bursting brilliance of
the next; even the night is goaded into insomnia by the everlasting
fireworks. Nothing is fixed or certain. The next moment of your life never
attains to the stability of even a probable occurrence. It hits you with
the speed of a bullet, passes through you, is gone. (He pauses.) And then
you come out into the old peaceful world you once knew—for a rest—and it
seems as if you were burried in the tomb of a pyramid erected before the
stars were born. Time has died of old age; and the silence, like the old
Chinese water torture, drips leadenly drop by drop—on your brain—and then
you think—you have to think—about the things you ought to forget—
WAYNE—(in a brisk
voice—trying to rouse his friend) You'll get used to the quiet after a
bit. You're letting your imagination run away with you. (Arnold looks at
him with a curious, haggard smile.) Do you know—it's
a curious coincidence—I was just talking about you with a friend of yours
before you came in. Speak of the devil, you know. Guess who it was?
I don't know. Who?
It's funny you didn't run into him.
interest—as if he hadn't heard the name) I saw someone in uniform going up
the stairs—didn't get a look at his face. Who did you say it was?
emphasis on the name) Roylston—Herb Roylston—the man you dragged out of No
Mans Land after Chateau Thierry when you won your load of medals, you
You don't mean—Herb?
exactly who I do mean.
excited) Here—in this club—Herb? But that's impossible. Herb was dead, I
WAYNE—You may think
so; but you'll be doubly glad to hear he's very much alive, and he wants
to see you and thank you for—
his face with his hands) Oh God!
Jack! What's the trouble?
himself with an effort) Nothing—only it brings it all back. (His fingers
flutter to his mouth. He murmurs hoarsely) Got a cigarette, Bobby?
does not touch his own boxes but picks a cigarette from his friend's case
and lights it. He takes a deep inhale and commences to talk volubly in a
forced tone as if he were trying to cover up his apparent indifference in
the matter of Roylston.) I'm damn glad to hear about Herb. So he's alive—really
alive! It seems incredible. He was swimming in his own blood. I carried
him over my shoulder. I was soaked with it. Ugh! (He shudders at the
recollection but talks rapidly again, trying to drown his memories.) I'll
be damn glad to see him again—damn glad. Herb's a corking chap—one of the
best. He and I were great chums over there. (He puts his cigarette out and
sticks it hastily in his pocket. Wayne sees this and seems about to speak
but thinks better of it. Arnold goes on in an agitated tone.) Yes, Herb's
one fine chap. That was an awful mess—the worst ever—that Chateau Thierry
affair. I'll have to tell you about it. We ran
out of cigarettes you know—not a damn one in the whole company—not a smoke
of any description. It was hell. Speaking of smokes—you've another fag,
haven't you, Bobby?
the table, Jack.
again takes one from Wayne's case and puffs nervously.) You can't realize
what a smoke comes to mean to you in a first line trench. You'd have to
have been there, Bobby. You wondered at my smoking now when I never had in
the old days. I didn't at first—then I had to—had to, I tell you! You know—the
stench and the lice and the rest of it. A smoke takes your mind off them,
I know it's a good thing.
(complainingly) And that time in that Chateau Thierry trench there was
nothing. The Bosche barrage cut us off completely from the rest of the
army—not a smoke in the whole company! No chance of getting one! We only
had emergency field rations and when they gave out some of the boys—toward
the end—those who were still unwounded—were wild with hunger and thirst. I
can remember Billy Sterett—a corporal—he went west with a bullet through
his heart later on, poor fellow—singing some idiotic nonsense about beef
steak pie over and over again—till it drove you nearly mad to listen to
him. He must have been clean out of his head. But I didn't feel hunger or
thirst at all. All I wanted was a smoke—and not a one! (He puffs furiously
at his cigarette.)
about your famous three days, Jack. It was a glorious thing but I can well
imagine how terrible it was also.
Terrible? No word for it! Man alive, you couldn't know! We'd crouch down
in the mud with the trench rats squeaking and scampering with fright over
our feet—nipping at your legs—while we waited for the next counter attack,
wondering if the Bosche would get through the next time, gritting our
teeth to stick it out. Their artillery played hell with us. The world
seemed flying to bits. The concussions of the bursting shells—all about us—would
jar your heart right back against your spine. It rained shell splinters.
Men kept falling, writhing and groaning in the
muck—one's friends!—and nothing to do. A little Italian private—Tony—he
used to sing for us in camp—don't know his second name—used to be a
bootblack here at home—was standing near me. A shell fragment came down on
his skull—his brains spattered all over—(shuddering)—over my face. And all
that time not a cigarette—not a damned smoke of any kind—to take your mind
Arnold's rapidly increasing excitement) You ought to try and forget those
unavoidable horrors, Jack. War has to be what it is—until we make an end
to it forever.
remark aside) You've got to know about it, all you others—then you'll send
us the things we need, smokes and the rest. (He throws his cigarette away
and lights another.) And at nights it was frightful, expecting a surprise
attack every minute—watching—straining your eyes! We had to pile the dead
up against the rear wall of the trench; and when you'd stumble in the dark
you'd put your hand out and touch a—a face, or a leg—or—something sticky
with blood. Not a wink of sleep! You couldn't! Even when the guns let up
for a moment there were the screams of the wounded out in No Mans Land.
They'd keep the dead awake—lying out there dying by bits. And you couldn't
go out to get them in that fire. It was suicide. I told the men that. They
wanted to go out and get their friends, and I couldn't give permission. We
needed every man. It was suicide. I told them so. They wept and cursed. It
was my duty. They would have been killed—uselessly.
WAYNE—But you went
out yourself—for Roylston.
his head) No; Roylston was dead. I saw him fall flat on his face. Then
after that for three days I didn't see or hear him—so he must have been
dead. (He hurries on volubly as if this thought of Roylston disturbed
him.) I thought I'd go mad. No place for the wounded to be cared for—groans
and shrieks on all sides! And not a thing to smoke! You had to think—think
about it! And the stench of the bodies rotting in the sun between the Bosche trench and ours! God! And not a single cigarette, do you
understand? Not one! You'd feel sick clear down to the soles of your feet.
You finally came to believe you were putrefying
yourself—alive!—and the living men around you—they too—rotten!
For heavens sake, Jack, cut it out!
would have been heaven—to fill your lungs with clean smoke—to cleanse the
stench out of your nostrils! But no! Not the tiniest butt! Not a damn
thing! Its unbelievable! (growing more and more excited) And when the
relief came—our boys—and I was weeping with the joy of it—and I prayed to
them—yes, actually prayed—Give me a cigarette, for God's sake! Not a one,
Bobby, do you hear? Not a blessed one of them had any. There'd been a
delay, a mistake, something. None had come up with the supplies. I was
wild. I cursed them. I suddenly remembered Roylston. He'd given me one
just before we charged. He had a whole case full I remembered, and I knew
the spot where he went down—the exact spot. After that—I forget. It's all
a blank. I must have gone over the top and brought him back. (His voice
sinks to a dull whisper. He notices the half-smoked cigarette in his hand
and throws it away with a gesture of loathing.)
him with horrified eyes) Then that was why—you saved Roylston—for a
cigarette—God! (As Arnold hides his face in his hands with a half-sob
Wayne hastens to add compassionately) No, it couldn't have been that. Your
mind is sick, old pal, do you know it? Very sick. Come with me, Jack.
Let's get out of here. (He gets to his feet putting his hand on his
his feet—in agonized tones) What have I been saying? I've never talked
about it before—but that's the thought that's been eating into my brain,
Bobby—what you just said. That's why I'm going mad—thinking about it—day
and night! (with frenzied protest) It couldn't have been that! I must have
gone out for him—for Herb! I must have suddenly realized that he was out
there—still alive—suffering! (breaking down) But how could I have known
that? I thought he was dead. How? I can't remember.
saw him when he stood up, of course—when he tried to get back to our
a groan) No—no—I saw noone—nothing.
Then you heard him screaming out there—screaming with pain in his
widening) Screaming? Yes—there was screaming—driving you mad— (His face
contracts convulsively. He beats his head with his hands, his eyes shut in
his effort to visualize the scene.) Yes—and then—God!—one voice—when all
the others were silent for a second—like this—(He throws his head back and
screams as if in horrible pain.)
waiter shrinks back against a window terrified) Jack! Stop!
ARNOLD—(in a frenzy
of joy) I remember it all now. It was his voice—Herb's—screaming—just at
the moment we were relieved! Then I knew he was out there alive. I
couldn't bear it! That's why I went over—to save him—Herb!—not the damned
cigarettes! (His face lights up and he grabs Wayne's hand and pumps it up
and down.) That's why I've been sick—queer—crazy—off my nut, Bobby!
They've all been telling what a hero I was—and I thought I'd done it all
for—I couldn't remember why I'd gone for him—except the cigarettes—and
they gave me medals for bravery—and all the time I've been going mad—slowly—inside—thinking
I was a damned cur! But now I know, Bobby. I remember every bit that
happened. I heard him scream—and I did go over to save Herb, Bobby! Thank
God! (He sinks down into a chair, weak but radiant.)
sure you did. It's only a touch of shock got the other fool notion into
your head. (with a grin) And now I can dismiss your case. You're cured
already. I'm some doctor, eh? (While he is speaking Roylston appears in
the doorway. When he sees Jack he gives a shout of delight and rushes over
throwing his arms around Arnold in a bear hug.)
him affectionately) Hello, Jack! (He holds him at arm's length—with
embarrassment) Here you are at last—I've wanted to see you—to try and tell—to
try and thank—damn it! (He fumbles in his pocket and pulls out his
cigarette case which he offers to Jack.) Its hard to speak about such
things—but you know—Have a cigarette.
ARNOLD—Not on your
life! Never another! A pipe for mine for the
rest of my life! (He beckons wildly to the waiter.) Hey, waiter! Bring on
a gallon of wine! Camouflage it in a teapot, if you have to, and pour it
through a strainer. Here's where we celebrate! (The astonished waiter
stands gaping at him in petrified wonder as Jack grabs Herb's hand and
shakes it up and down.) How are you, Herb, you old son of a gun?
(The Curtain Falls)