Hilde. Would you like that?
Lyngstrand. I hardly know. Yes; I almost think I should. But now,
for this summer, I would rather you were like yourself alone, and
exactly as you are.
Hilde. Do you like me best as I am?
Lyngstrand. Yes, I like you immensely as you are.
Hilde. Hm. Tell me, you who are an artist, do you think I'm right
always to wear bright-coloured summer dresses?
Lyngstrand. Yes; I think you're quite right!
Hilde. You think bright colours suit me, then?
Lyngstrand. They suit you charmingly--to my taste.
Hilde. But tell me, as an artist, how do you think I should look
Lyngstrand. In black, Miss Hilde?
Hilde. Yes, all in black. Do you think I should look well?
Lyngstrand. Black's hardly suitable for the summer. However,
you'd probably look remarkably well in black, especially with
Hilde (looking straight in front of her). All in black, up to the
throat; black frilling round that, black gloves, and a long black
veil hanging down behind.
Lyngstrand. If you were dressed so, Miss Hilde, I should wish I
were a painter, and I'd paint you as a young, beautiful,
Hilde. Or as a young, sorrowing, betrothed girl!
Lyngstrand. Yes, that would be better still. But you can't wish
to be dressed like that?
Hilde. I hardly know; but I think it's fascinating.
Hilde. Fascinating to think of, yes. (Suddenly pointing to the
left.) Oh, just look there!
Lyngstrand (looking). The great English steamer; and right by the
(WANGEL and ELLIDA come in past the pond.)
Wangel. No; I assure you, dear Ellida, you are mistaken. (Seeing
the others.) What, are you two here? It's not in sight yet; is
Lyngstrand. The great English ship?
Lyngstrand (pointing). There she is already, doctor.
Ellida. I knew it.
Lyngstrand. Come like a thief in the night, as one might say, so
quietly and noiselessly.
Wangel. You must go to the pier with Hilde. Be quick! I'm sure
she wants to hear the music.
Lyngstrand. Yes; we were just going there, doctor.
Wangel. Perhaps we'll follow you. We'll come directly.
Hilde (whispering to LYNGSTRAND). They're hunting in couples,
(HILDE and LYNGSTRAND go out through the garden. Music is heard
in the distance out at the fiord during the following.)
Ellida. Come! He is here! Yes, yes--I feel it.
Wangel. You'd better go in, Ellida. Let me talk with him alone.
Ellida. Oh! that's impossible--impossible, I say. (With a cry.)
Ah! do you see him, Wangel?
(The STRANGER enters from the left, and remains on the pathway
outside the fence.)
The Stranger (bowing). Good-evening. You see I am here again,
Ellida. Yes, yes. The time has come now.
The Stranger. And are you ready to start, or not?
Wangel. You can see for yourself that she is not.
The Stranger. I'm not asking about a travelling dress, or
anything of that kind, nor about packed trunks. All that is
needed for a journey I have with me on board. I've also secured a
cabin for her. (To ELLIDA.) So I ask you if you are ready to go
with me, to go with me--freely?
Ellida. Oh! do not ask me! Do not tempt me!
(A ship's bell is heard in the distance.)
The Stranger. That is the first bell for going on board. Now you
must say "Yes" or "No."