I warn you, don't, I'm in danger!
[He takes another step. She smashes a bottle on the table and faces him, clutching the broken
What did you do that for?
So I could twist the broken end in your face!
I bet you would do that!
I would! I will if you--
Oh! So you want some rough-house! All right, let's have some rough-house!
[He springs toward her, overturning the table. She cries out and strikes at him with the bottle top
but he catches her wrist.]
Tiger--tiger! Drop the bottle top! Drop it! We've had this date with each other from the
[She moans. The bottle top falls. She sinks to her knees. He picks up her inert figure and carries
her to the bed. The hot trumpet and drums from the Four Deuces sound loudly.]
It is some weeks later. Stella is packing Blanche's things. Sounds of water can be heard running
in the bathroom. The portieres are partly open on the poker players--Stanley, Steve, Mitch and
Pablo--who sit around the table in the kitchen. The atmosphere of the kitchen is now the same
raw, lurid one of the disastrous poker night. The building is framed by the sky of turquoise.
Stella has been crying as she arranges the flowery dresses in the open trunk. Eunice comes down
the steps from her flat above and enters the kitchen. There is an outburst from the poker table.
Drew to an inside straight and made it, by God.
Maldita sea to suerte!
Put it in English, greaseball!
I am cursing your rutting luck.
STANLEY [prodigiously elated]:
You know what luck is? Luck is believing you're lucky. Take at Salerno. I believed I was lucky.
I figured that 4 out of 5 would not come through but I would... and I did. I put that down as a
rule. To hold front position in this rat-race you've got to believe you are lucky.
You... you... you... Brag... brag... bull... bull.
[Stella goes into the bedroom and starts folding a dress.]
What's the matter with him?
EUNICE [walking past the table]:
I always did say that men are callous things with no feelings, but this does beat anything. Making
pigs of yourselves.
[She comes through the portieres into the bedroom.]
What's the matter with her?
How is my baby?
Sleeping like a little angel. Brought you some grapes.
[She puts them on a stool and lowers her voice.] Blanche?
How is she?
She wouldn't eat anything but asked for a drink.
What did you tell her?
I--just told her that--we'd made arrangements for her to rest in the country. She's got it mixed in
her mind with Shep Huntleigh.
[Blanche opens the bathroom door slightly.]
If anyone calls while I'm bathing take the number and tell them I'll call right back.
That cool yellow silk--the boucle. See if it's crushed. If it's not too crushed I'll wear it and on the
lapel that silver and turquoise pin in the shape of a seahorse. You will find them in the heart-
shaped box I keep my accessories in. And Stella... Try and locate a bunch of artificial violets in
that box, too, to pin with the seahorse on the lapel of the jacket.
[She closes the door. Stella turns to Eunice.]
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I don't know if I did the right thing.
What else could you do?
I couldn't believe her story and go on living with Stanley.
Don't ever believe it. Life has got to go on. No matter what happens, you've got to keep on going.
[The bathroom door opens a little.]
BLANCHE [looking out]:
Is the coast clear?
Tell her how well she's looking.
Please close the curtains before I come out.
--How many for you?
[Blanche appears in the amber tight of the door. She has a tragic radiance in her red satin robe
following the sculptural lines of her body. The "Varsouviana" rises audibly as Blanche enters the
BLANCHE [with faintly hysterical vivacity]:
I have just washed my hair.
I'm not sure I got the soap out.
Such fine hair!
BLANCHE [accepting the compliment]:
It's a problem. Didn't I get a call?
Who from, Blanche?
Why, not yet, honey!
How strange! I--
[At the sound of Blanche's voice Mitch's arm supporting his cards has sagged and his gaze is
dissolved into space. Stanley slaps him on the shoulder.]
Hey, Mitch, come to!
[The sound of this new voice shocks Blanche. She makes a shocked gesture, forming his name
with her lips. Stella nods and looks quickly away. Blanche stands quite still for some moments--
the silver-backed mirror in her hand and a look of sorrowful perplexity as though all human
experience shows on her face. Blanche finally speaks but with sudden hysteria.]
What's going on here?
[She turns from Stella to Eunice and back to Stella. Her rising voice penetrates the concentration
of the game. Mitch ducks his head lower but Stanley shoves back his chair as if about to rise.
Steve places a restraining hand on his arm.]
What's happened here? I want an explanation of what's happened here.
Hush! Hush! Honey.
Why are you looking at me like that? Is something wrong with me?
You look wonderful, Blanche. Don't she look wonderful?
I understand you are going on a trip.
Yes, Blanche is. She's going on a vacation.
I'm green with envy.
Help me, help me get dressed!
STELLA [handing her dress]:
Is this what you--
Yes, it will do! I'm anxious to get out of here--this place is a trap!
What a pretty blue jacket.
It's lilac colored.
You're both mistaken. It's Delia Robbia blue. The blue of the robe in the old Madonna pictures.
Are these grapes washed?
[She fingers the bunch of grapes which Eunice had brought in.]
Washed, I said. Are they washed?
They're from the French Market.
That doesn't mean they've been washed.
[The cathedral bells chime]
Those cathedral bells--they're the only clean thing in the Quarter. Well, I'm going now. I'm ready
She's going to walk out before they get here.
I don't want to pass in front of those men.
Then wait'll the game breaks up.
Sit down and...
[Blanche turns weakly, hesitantly about. She lets them push her into a chair.]
I can smell the sea air. The rest of my time I'm going to spend on the sea. And when I die, I'm
going to die on the sea. You know what I shall die of?
[She plucks a grape]
I shall die of eating an unwashed grape one day out on the ocean. I will die--with my hand in the
hand of some nice-looking ship's doctor, a very young one with a small blond mustache and a
big silver watch. "Poor lady," they'll say, "the quinine did her no good. That unwashed grape has
transported her soul to heaven."
[The cathedral chimes are heard]
And I'll be buried at sea sewn up in a clean white sack and dropped overboard--at noon--in the
blaze of summer--and into an ocean as blue as
my first lover's eyes!
[A Doctor and a Matron have appeared around the corner of the building and climbed the steps
to the porch. The gravity of their profession is exaggerated--the unmistakable aura of the state
institution with its cynical detachment. The Doctor rings the doorbell. The murmur of the game
EUNICE [whispering to Stella]:
That must be them.
[Stella presses her fists to her lips.]
BLANCHE [rising slowly]:
What is it?
EUNICE [affectedly casual]:
Excuse me while I see who's at the door.
[Eunice goes into the kitchen.]
I wonder if it's for me.
[A whispered colloquy takes place at the door.]
EUNICE [returning, brightly]:
Someone is calling for Blanche.
It is for me, then!
[She looks fearfully from one to the other and then to the portieres. The "Varsouviana" faintly
Is it the gentleman I was expecting from Dallas?
I think it is, Blanche.
I'm not quite ready.
Ask him to wait outside.
[Eunice goes back to the portieres. Drums sound very softly.]
My silver toilet articles are still out.
They're waiting in front of the house.
They! Who's "they"?
[The "Varsouviana" is playing distantly.
[Stella stares back at Blanche. Eunice is holding Stella's arm. There is a moment of silence--no
sound but that of Stanley steadily shuffling the cards.]
[Blanche catches her breath again and slips back into the flat with a peculiar smile, her eyes wide
and brilliant. As soon as her sister goes past her, Stella closes her eyes and clenches her hands.
Eunice throws her arms comforting about her. Then she starts up to her flat. Blanche stops just
inside the door. Mitch keeps staring down at his hands on the table, but the other men look at her
curiously. At last she starts around the table toward the bedroom. As she does, Stanley suddenly
pushes back his chair and rises as if to block her way. The Matron follows her into the flat.]
Did you forget something?
Yes! Yes, I forgot something!
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