Pygmalion (ACT V, page 1 of 24)


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Mrs. Higgins's drawing-room. She is at her writing-table as before. The
parlor-maid comes in.

THE PARLOR-MAID [at the door] Mr. Henry, mam, is downstairs with
Colonel Pickering.

MRS. HIGGINS. Well, show them up.

THE PARLOR-MAID. They're using the telephone, mam. Telephoning to the
police, I think.

MRS. HIGGINS. What!

THE PARLOR-MAID [coming further in and lowering her voice] Mr. Henry's
in a state, mam. I thought I'd better tell you.

MRS. HIGGINS. If you had told me that Mr. Henry was not in a state it
would have been more surprising. Tell them to come up when they've
finished with the police. I suppose he's lost something.

THE PARLOR-MAID. Yes, mam [going].

MRS. HIGGINS. Go upstairs and tell Miss Doolittle that Mr. Henry and
the Colonel are here. Ask her not to come down till I send for her.

THE PARLOR-MAID. Yes, mam.

Higgins bursts in. He is, as the parlor-maid has said, in a state.

HIGGINS. Look here, mother: here's a confounded thing!

MRS. HIGGINS. Yes, dear. Good-morning. [He checks his impatience and
kisses her, whilst the parlor-maid goes out]. What is it?

HIGGINS. Eliza's bolted.

MRS. HIGGINS [calmly continuing her writing] You must have frightened
her.

HIGGINS. Frightened her! nonsense! She was left last night, as usual,
to turn out the lights and all that; and instead of going to bed she
changed her clothes and went right off: her bed wasn't slept in. She
came in a cab for her things before seven this morning; and that fool
Mrs. Pearce let her have them without telling me a word about it. What
am I to do?

MRS. HIGGINS. Do without, I'm afraid, Henry. The girl has a perfect
right to leave if she chooses.

HIGGINS [wandering distractedly across the room] But I can't find
anything. I don't know what appointments I've got. I'm-- [Pickering
comes in. Mrs. Higgins puts down her pen and turns away from the
writing-table].

PICKERING [shaking hands] Good-morning, Mrs. Higgins. Has Henry told
you? [He sits down on the ottoman].

HIGGINS. What does that ass of an inspector say? Have you offered a
reward?

MRS. HIGGINS [rising in indignant amazement] You don't mean to say you
have set the police after Eliza?

HIGGINS. Of course. What are the police for? What else could we do? [He
sits in the Elizabethan chair].

PICKERING. The inspector made a lot of difficulties. I really think he
suspected us of some improper purpose.

MRS. HIGGINS. Well, of course he did. What right have you to go to the
police and give the girl's name as if she were a thief, or a lost
umbrella, or something? Really! [She sits down again, deeply vexed].

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