Act 5, Scene III

Scene: Before the Citadel.

Enter MELANTIUS, DIPHILUS, and CALIANAX, on the Walls.

If the dull people can believe I am arm'd,
(Be constant, Diphilus!) now we have time,
Either to bring our banish'd honours home,
Or create new ones in our ends.
I fear not;
My spirit lies not that way.—Courage, Calianax.
'Would I had any I you should quickly know it.
Speak to the people: Thou art eloquent.
'Tis a fine eloquence to come to the gallows!
You were born to be my end. The devil take you!
Now must I hang for company. 'Tis strange,
I should be old, and neither wise nor valiant.

Enter below, LYSIPPUS, DIAGORAS, CLEON, STRATO, and Guard.

See where he stands, as boldly confident
As if he had his full command about him.
He looks as if he had the better cause, sir;
Under your gracious pardon, let me speak it!
Though he be mighty-spirited, and forward
To all great things; to all things of that danger
Worse men shake at the telling of; yet, certainly,
I do believe him noble; and this action
Rather pull'd on, than sought: his mind was ever
As worthy as his hand
'Tis my fear, too.
Heaven forgive all! Summon him, lord Cleon.
Ho, from the walls there!
Worthy Cleon, welcome.
We could have wish'd you here, lord. You are honest.
Well, thou art as flattering a knave, though
I dare not tell thee so—
I am sorry that we meet thus; our old love
Never required such distance. Pray Heaven,
You have not left yourself, and sought this safety
More out of fear than honour! You have lost
A noble master; which your faith, Melantius,
Some think, might have preserved: Yet you know best.
When time was, I was mad; some, that dares fight,
I hope will pay this rascal.
Royal young man, whose tears look lovely on thee;
Had they been shed for a deserving one,
They had been lasting monuments! Thy brother,
While he was good, I call'd him king; and served him
With that strong faith, that most unwearied valour,
Pull'd people from the farthest sun to seek him,
And beg his friendship. I was then his soldier.
But since his hot pride drew him to disgrace me,
And brand my noble actions with his lust
(That never-cured dishonour of my sister,
Base stain of whore! and, which is worse,
The joy to make it still so) like myself,
Thus I have flung him off with my allegiance;
And stand here mine own justice, to revenge
What I have suffered in him; and this old man,
Wronged almost to lunacy.
You would draw me in. I have had no wrong,
I do disclaim ye all.
The short is this:
'Tis no ambition to lift up myself
Urgeth me thus; I do desire again
To be a subject, so I may be free.
If not, I know my strength, and will unbuild
This goodly town. Be speedy and be wise,
In a reply.
Be sudden, sir, to tie
All up again: What's done is past recall,
And past you to revenge: and there are thousands,
That wait for such a troubled hour as this.
Throw him the blank.
Melantius, write in that
Thy choice: My seal is at it.
[Throws him a paper.
It was our honours drew us to this act,
Not gain: and we will only work our pardons.
Put my name in too.
You disclaim'd us all
But now, Calianax.
That is all one:
I'll not be hang'd hereafter by a trick:
I'll have it in.
You shall, you shall.—
Come to the back gate, and we'll call you king,
And give you up the fort.
Away, away.