Title- The Contrabandista

   

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Act 1
Dialogue Following Song No. 1a

Josť:
We have been watching for five days, and seen no one, not even a person with a ransom for the girl, Rita, our latest captive.

Inez:
Ha! I had forgotten her. Summon her.

Josť:

(C. to hut) Female prisoner, come forth

Sancho:

(R. of hut) Contemptible captive, appear. (Enter Rita from hut, and down R.S.)

Rita:

Why am I so called?

Inez:

My husband brought you here a captive.

Rita:

He had some quarrel with Vasquez.

Inez:

The Count Vasquez, I know, to whom you were to be married.

Rita:

Whom I love dearly. What have I done? Why was I, on the eve of our wedding, while wandering some distance from home to meet him, seized by some of your band, who, stifling my cries, bore me hither?

Inez:

'Twas the revenge of Ferdinand di Roxas.

Rita:

Oh, give me back to my friends, and sacred will I keep the secret of these hills.

Inez:

No. My husband's revenge I must complete. We know that within three days of thy capture he fought and fell by the hand of your lover.

Rita:

Vasquez! Was he wounded?

Inez:

He lives. But let our band gain such another leader as my Ferdinand, and the day of the Count Vasquez are numbered.

Josť:

The days of the Count Vasquez----

Sancho:

Are numbered. (Josť goes up on to rock.) Such is the law of the Ladrones. (Sheep bells heard, and a Shepherd's pipe.)

Inez:

Who goes there?

Josť:

A goatherd and his boy, on their way home.

Inez:

Bring them hither. (Sancho goes up rock and stands at back, L.H., as if looking down below.)

Sancho:

Ho! Shepherd. This way. We would speck with ye. (Presents pistol.)

Inez:

Listen, girl. The band need money more than thy life. (Enter Shepherd and Boy.) I have fixed the sum, which thy rich friends who dwell in the city yonder will gladly pay for thy delivery. (Goes from C. to L .)

Rita:

How can I reach them?

Inez:

By a trusty messenger---this boy. Take off that ring, 'twill be a token.

Rita:

(writing on a small ivory tablet) Take this to note to my Vasquez, and this ring take to my friends.

Inez:

And say, unless the ransom's in our hands before the morning sun shall warm the plain, their Rita dies; quickly or by torture. This tell Count Vasquez; say you have it from the chieftain's wife, made widow by his hand.

Josť:

(Stopping the Old Man, who is following the Boy up the platform, and exit Boy.) We'd better keep old Goatskin as security. He'll guard the girl while we are on the watch.

Inez:

Go, boy, and do our bidding. (The Shepherd kisses the lad, who is rudely pushed down the platform at back, L.H., by Josť, and disappears.) Hast seen a stranger on your road today?

Shepherd:

One, Madame, and him a foreigner, I fancy. He's lost his way and can't be very far from this.

Josť:

Ha!

Sancho:

Ha!

Inez:

Silence! This may be the leader sent by fate. Show us the path, old man, by which he is likely to approach; there we will place our spies, and you will return to guard our captive, for whom you must answer with your life. Come!



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