The Little Manby John Galsworthy
Format of Original Source: Play
Recommended Adaptation Length:
Candidate for Adaptation? Not Reviewed
AMERICAN. What does that body-snatcher say?
GERMAN. He say this man use the baby to save himself from arrest. Very smart–he say.
AMERICAN. I judge you do him an injustice. [Showing off the LITTLE MAN with a sweep of his arm.] This is a vurry white man. He’s got a black baby, and he won’t leave it in the lurch. Guess we would all act noble, that way, give us the chance. [The LITTLE MAN rises, holding out the BABY, and advances a step or two. The half-moon at once gives, increasing its size; the AMERICAN climbs onto a higher trunk. The LITTLE MAN retires and again sits down.]
AMERICAN [addressing the OFFICIAL]. Guess you’d better go out of business and wait for the mother.
OFFICIAL [stamping his foot]. Die Mutter sall ‘rested be for taking out baby mit typhus. Ha! [To the LITTLE MAN.] Put ze baby down! [The LITTLE MAN smiles.] Do you ‘ear?
AMERICAN [addressing the OFFICIAL]. Now, see here. ‘Pears to me you don’t suspicion just how beautiful this is. Here we have a man giving his life for that old baby that’s got no claim on him. This is not a baby of his own making. No, sir, this a vurry Christ-like proposition in the gentleman.
OFFICIAL. Put ze baby down, or ich will gommand someone it to do.
AMERICAN. That will be vurry interesting to watch.
OFFICIAL [to POLICEMAN]. Nehmen Sie den Buben. Dake it vrom him. [The POLICEMAN mutters, but does not.]
AMERICAN [to the GERMAN]. Guess I lost that.
GERMAN. He say he is not his officer.
AMERICAN. That just tickles me to death.
OFFICIAL [looking round]. Vill nobody dake ze Bub’?
ENGLISHWOMAN [moving a step–faintly]. Yes–I–
ENGLISHMAN [grasping her arm]. By Jove! Will you!
OFFICIAL [gathering himself for a great effort to take the BABY, and advancing two steps]. Zen I gommand you–[He stops and his voice dies away.] Zit dere!
AMERICAN. My! That’s wonderful. What a man this is! What a sublime sense of duty!
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