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  Vortigern Studies > Vortigern > Art & Literature > Play 3 > Act 2, scene 1

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ACT II.

SCENE I. - ROME.

Enter AURELIUS and UTER, CONSTANTIUS' two Brothers.[1]

Uter. E'en now in Rome have we for seven long years
Made this our wearisome and constant sojourn:
I would we were again in Britain.

Aur. Even so, good Uter, stands it with myself;
Nay, an thou yearn'st to see thy native land,
How is it, then, with me, that there have left
The jewel of my soul, my dearest Flavia!

Uter. Nay, good my brother, patience yet a little :
All will he well, Flavia doth love you still.

Aur. I cannot, will not bear this absence longer.

Enter Servant.

Serv. A messenger, my lord, attends without,
On business of great import.

Aur. Whence comes he?

Serv. From Britain.

Aur. From Britain, say'st thou? then admit him straight.

[Exit Serv.

Enter Messenger.

Mes. My gracious lord, are you the eldest son
Of our good King Constantius ?

Aur. Even so.

Mes. This packet, then, I fear, will news contain
The most afflicting.

Aurelius reads.

These letters we in haste despatch, to tell you
Of your dear father's death, and to forewarn you
Of your own danger: - murder most foul hath ta'en him.
Vortigern on the Scots hath laid the murder;
Yet, under this pretence, much lies conceal'd.
Till you arrive, he is to rule deputed:
But as you prize your lives return not yet.

Aur. Oh! horror! horror! my dear father murder'd!

Uter. By whom? speak. Messenger, where, when, and
how?

Mes. The plot, good princes, hath been deeply laid.

Aur. This is, indeed, most foul! say on, my friend;
Speak quickly, I entreat thee !

Mes. Then, thus it is Vortigern hath done the deed;
His love of splendour, pomp, and sovereignty,
And his great int'rest in the people's minds,
All, all did prompt him to this hellish act.

Aur. Uter,oh, heavens ! the father of my Flavia!
It is impossible! It cannot be!

Uter. Oh! this, indeed, is damned treachery.
My dear Aurelius, let not stupor choak
The worthy feeling of a just revenge.
Courage, Aurelius! courage, my dear brother!

Aur. Speak on, speak on, and end thy sad discourse !

Mes. Thy friends in Britain long suspected this,
And to each port despatch'd their trusty spies,
To learn what vessels there for Rome were bound.
Haply that which hither hath convey'd me,
Was to have brought your executioners.

Aur. Oh! would it had been so. Uter support me!

Uter. Let us retire awhile, my gentle brother;
Hereafter, we will send and question thee,
Touching thy tidings, and their direful cause. [Exeunt.

Notes

[1] This is a very silly mistake - Aurelius and Uter were the sons of Constantius!

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