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Rada - A Drama of War in One Act

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41 pages
The Project Gutenberg EBook of Rada, by Alfred NoyesThis eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it,give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online atwww.gutenberg.netTitle: Rada A Drama of War in One ActAuthor: Alfred NoyesRelease Date: April 30, 2004 [EBook #12220]Language: English*** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK RADA ***Produced by Juliet Sutherland, Juliet Sutherland, Charles M. Bidwell and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team.RADAA DRAMA OF WAR IN ONE ACTBY ALFRED NOYESAuthor of "The Wine Press," "Tales of the Mermaid Tavern," Etc.1913PERSONS OF THE PLAYRADA, wife of the village doctor.SUBKA, her daughter, aged twelve.ARRAM } two hostile soldiers quarteredMICHAEL } in her house, in time of war.NANKO, a half-witted schoolmaster.Several soldiers.THE SCENE is in the Balkans, in a village which has just been taken by the enemy, on Christmas Eve.RADASCENE—_A guest-chamber, the typical living-room of a prosperous village doctor in the Balkans. On the left,a small window and an entrance door. On the right, a door leading into a bedroom. At the back, an open fire oflogs is burning brightly. Over the fireplace is the eikonostasis, with three richly coloured and gilded eikons,the central one of the Madonna. The light, which is never allowed to go out, is burning before it. The room is litat present only by ...
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The Project Gutenberg EBook of Rada, by AlfredseyoNThis eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere atno cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever.You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under theterms of the Project Gutenberg License includedwith this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.netTitle: Rada A Drama of War in One ActAuthor: Alfred NoyesRelease Date: April 30, 2004 [EBook #12220]Language: English*E*B* OSTOAK RRT AODFA  T**H*IS PROJECT GUTENBERGProduced by Juliet Sutherland, Juliet Sutherland,Charles M. Bidwell and the Online DistributedProofreading Team.
ADARA DRAMA OF WAR IN ONE ACTBY ALFRED NOYESAuthor of "The Wine Press," "Tales of the MermaidTavern," Etc.3191PERSONS OF THE PLAYRADA, wife of the village doctor.SUBKA, her daughter, aged twelve.ARRAM } two hostile soldiers quarteredMICHAEL } in her house, in time of war.NANKO, a half-witted schoolmaster.Several soldiers.THE SCENE is in the Balkans, in a village whichhas just been taken by the enemy, on Christmas.evE
ADARSCENE—_A guest-chamber, the typical living-room of a prosperous village doctor in theBalkans. On the left, a small window and anentrance door. On the right, a door leading intoa bedroom. At the back, an open fire of logs isburning brightly. Over the fireplace is theeikonostasis, with three richly coloured andgilded eikons, the central one of the Madonna.The light, which is never allowed to go out, isburning before it. The room is lit at presentonly by this, the fire-light, and two candles inbrass candlesticks on a black wooden tableunder the window. Rows of porcelain platesround the walls gleam fitfully. On either side ofthe eikonostasis is a large chibouk, with inlaidbowl and amber mouth-piece. There is a divanwith scarlet rugs flung across it to the right ofthe fire; and there are several skins and rugson the floor.TMIwCo HRAoEuLm, aanriea ns esaotledide rast _t,h eA tRaRblAe,M _d riannkding.hReAr DhAe,a ad  dbaorwk ehda inn dhseor mhea nwdosm, aonn,  tshites  diwveaenp.ing withNANKO, the idiot, sits on the floor, rubbing hishands, snapping his fingers, chuckling to himself,and staring into the fire.
ARRAM Look here, my girl, where's the use ofsnivelling? You ought to think yourself damnedlucky to be alive.ADARO my God! My God!MICHAELThis is war, this is! And you can't expect war to beall cakes and cream.[They laugh and drink.]ARRAM You ought to think yourself damned luckyto be alive, and have two men quartered on youinstead of one. If your husband and the rest of thevillagers hadn't made such a disturbance, theymight have been alive, too.NANKO Exactly! Exactly! I used to be aschoolmaster, you know, in the old days; and, ifyou knew what I know, you'd understand, my dear,it's entirely a question of the survival of the fittest!The survival of the fittest! That's what it is.ARRAM Wouldn't they have done the same to us,if they'd had the chance? We've got women andchildren at home snivelling and saying, "O my God,O my God," just like you. Don't you trouble aboutGod. What can He do when both sides go down ontheir marrow-bones? He can't make both sides win,can He?
ADARO God! God! God!MICHAEL [Getting up and standing in front of her.]Look here. We've had enough of this music. We'vebeen cutting throats all day, and now we want tounbuckle a bit. There'll be hell to pay when theother boys come back. A pretty wild-goose chaseyou've sent them on, too, with your tale about theold Jew's money-bags. What was the game? Youseemed mighty anxious to wheedle us all out of thehouse; and you'd never get out of the village aliveto-night. Listen to that![There is an uproar outside, a shot, and a woman'sscream, followed by the terrified cry of a child: "Ah!Ah! Father!"]ARRAM The men are mad with zaki and blood andfroomth tehr et hcihnilgdsr.e Tn.h eWreh'ast  ncoh ahnolcdei nwg otuhled mt hienr, ee vbee nfora fine-looking wench like yourself?MICHAEL Don't tell me you were going out intothat? [He points in the direction of the uproar.]Something to hide on the spot, eh? Well, nowyou've got the others out of the way, we're going tohave a look. What's in there? [He points to the littledoor on the left.]RADA [Rising to her feet slowly, steadying herselfowint hh ios nfea chea.]n dT haisg aiisn swt atrh, eis nw'ta lilt, ?a Inf dI  fcixhionog she etro eyesrevenge myself on those I hate— listen to me. I
suppose you—want money. And I can tell youwhere to find it.MARRAAnother wild-goose chase to the other end of thevalley?RADA No. In the old mill-house. Not a hundredyards away. Money, money enough to make us allrich. But [a cunning expression comes into herface] if I tell you where to find it, you must comeback and give me my share.MICHAEL [Staring at her.] Another pack of lies!What are you up to, eh?ARRAM It's been too much for her nerves. Don'tworry her, or she'll go out of her mind, and thenthere'll be nobody to get us our supper.NANKO That would be selfish, Rada. You know it'sChristmas Eve. Nobody ought to think ofunpleasant things on Christmas Eve. I don't thinkit's right to spoil people's pleasure on ChristmasEve. What have you done with the Christmas tree,?adaRARRAM And who's to blame? That's what I want toaksn onwo.t , Ywoeu  sdhoanl'lt  bbel afimgeh tiunsg,  doon  yyoouur?  siWdhey ,a gaasi nlisktelysomebody else before next Christmas.MICHAEL What have you got in there? [He pointsto the door on the left again and advances toward].ti
oRpAeDnAs  [a Hcuurrpibeodlayr da nbde tawse ife nm hisiumn adnerds tthaen ddinogo r.h]im,fFoor oad !w Foolfo-pd!a cFko. oCd ofomre  hounn, ghrye lpm eyon!u rFsoeolvde es!noughtMhiIsC, HAArrEaLm .H oHlye rSe't.s  Pa edtienr,n ewr hfaotr  fa olratryd emr!e nL.ook atbReAfoDrAe  [tLhae uogthhienrgs  wcilodmlye.].  IBt'est toeru rt aCkher iystomura psi cdiknner.[b_eSgihnes  tlhoraudsitnsg  dtihseh etsa bilnet ow iMthI CfoHoAdE._L]'S hands andpNluAmNsK tOh Iefr ey,o uR ahdaap,p yeon ut om higahvte  gaivney  mcrey sotnaleli.zedARRAM Lord, what a sight for hungry soldiers!wWaet'erre!  iIn' mlu hcku'ns grwya; y.b uHt etrhee,r fee tacrhe  tmime eas  bwohwel no fyoucan't enjoy food without washing your hands.[RADA hesitates, then goes out of the room.ARRAM holds out a ring toMICHAEL.]Her husband's ring. I got it off his fingerWhen he went down. He lay there on his backHowling like a wolf, with his belly blown out.I put him out of his misery. Look at my hands.Ugh! I want to wash.[NANKO rises and peers at them.]
OKNANAh, but they're red.Red, aren't they? And there's red on your coat,.oot[He fingers it curiously.]I suppose that's blood, eh? People are suchcowards.Many of them never seem to understandTDrheata dmfuallny' sa far afiigd hotifn tgh ea nsiimghatl . oTf hbeloy'orde. afraid,IY tohui nkkn ito'sw , ai nb tehaeu tiOfludl  cToelsotuar,m beenat,u ttihfuely! usedTo splash it on the door-posts.MARRA[Pushing him off.]YGoo u acnrda zsiyt  odlod wdne,vil![RADA enters with a bowl of water, sets it on abench and returns to her place. ARRAM washeshis hands.]MICHAELMy hands want washing, too.O Lord, you've turned the water into wine!Fetch me some fresh.[bRaAckD, As wapaypirnoga cah liettsl,e ,s taasr eifs  faait ntth.]e bowl and movesMARRA[Roughly]
I'll empty it. Give it to me.[He goes out]OKNANThe Old Testament, you know, is full of it.Who is this, it says, that cometh from EdomIn dyed garments from Bozrah? It was bloodThat dyed their garments. And in RevelationsBlood came out of the wine-press, till it splashedThe bridles of the horses; and the seasWere all turned into blood. Doesn't that showThat man's a fighting animal?tMo IoCpHeAn EitL. ][ GWoheast' st oi nt hhee rdeo?or on the right and triesdRoAoDr.A]  [NToh!r uNsot!i nDg ohn'etr sgeol fi nb tehtewreee! nD hoinm't  agno di nt htehere!MICHAELSo that's the treasury, is it? Loot? More loot?What is it? The family stocking?[TAhReRn AgoMe es nttoe rtsh ew titahb lteh ea nbdo wble aginnds  seeattsi nitg .d]own.OKNANO, no! no!The stocking is in the chimney-corner, see![He shakes the empty stocking that hangs in thefireplace.]All ready for Santa Claus. It's a new custom.They do it in Germany. The children, there,Believe that Santa Claus comes down the chimney.The doctor studied in Germany, you know.
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