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IF I HAD A FATHER.
SCENE.-A Sculptor's studio. ARTHUR GER
VAISE working at a clay figure and humming a tune. A knock.
Ger. Come in. (Throws a wet cloth over the clay. Enter WARREN by the door communicating with the house.) Ah, Warren! How do you
do ? War. How are you, Gervaise ? I'm delighted to see you once more. I have but just heard of your return.
Ger. I've been home but a fortnight. I was just thinking of
War. I was certain I should find you at work.
Ger. You see my work can go on by any light. It is more independent than yours.
War. I wish it weren't, then.
War. Because there would be a chance of our getting you out of your den sometimes.
Ger. Like any other wild beast when the dark falls—eh ?
War. Just so.
War. Why shouldn't you roar a little now and then like other honest lions ?
Ger. I doubt if the roaring lions do much beyond roaring
War. And I doubt whether the lion that won't even whisk his tail, will get food enough shoved through his bars to make it worth his while to keep a cage in London.
Ger. I certainly shall not make use of myself to recommend my work.
War. What is it now?
Ger. Oh, nothing !-only a little fancy of my own.
War. There again! The moment I set foot in your study, you throw the sheet over your clay, and when I ask
what working at—“Oh-a little fancy of my own!"
Ger. I couldn't tell it was you coming.
War. Let me see what you've been doing, then.
Ger. Oh, she's a mere Lot's-wife as yet!
War. (approaching the figure). Of course, of course! I understand all that.
Ger. (laying his hand on his arm). Excuse me : I would rather not show it.
War. I beg your pardon. I couldn't believe you really meant it. Ger. I'll show you the mould if you
like. War. I don't know what you mean by that: you would never throw a wet sheet over a cast! (GER. lifts a painting from the floor and sets it on an easel. War. regards it