ACT I SCENE: The library of ASHER PINDAR'S house in Foxon Falls, a New Englandvillage of some three thousand souls, over the destinies of whichthe Pindars for three generations have presided. It is a large,dignified room, built early in the nineteenth century, with whitedoors and gloss woodwork. At the rear of the stage,—which is thefront of the house,—are three high windows with small, square panesof glass, and embrasures into which are fitted white insideshutters. These windows reach to within a foot or so of the floor;a person walking on the lawn or the sidewalk just beyond it may beseen through them. The trees bordering the Common are also seenthrough these windows, and through a gap in the foliage a glimpse ofthe terraced steeple of the Pindar Church, the architecture of whichis of the same period as the house. Upper right, at the end of thewall, is a glass door looking out on the lawn. There is anotherdoor, lower right, and a door, lower left, leading into ASHERPINDAR'S study. A marble mantel, which holds a clock and certainornaments, is just beyond this door. The wall spaces on the rightand left are occupied by high bookcases filled with respectablevolumes in calf and dark cloth bindings. Over the mantel is anoil painting of the Bierstadt school, cherished by ASHER as aninheritance from his father, a huge landscape with a self-conscioussky, mountains, plains, rivers and waterfalls, and two small figuresof Indians—who seem to have been talking to a missionary. In thespaces between the windows are two steel engravings, "The Death ofWolfe on the Plains of Abraham" and "Washington Crossing theDelaware!" The furniture, with the exception of a few heirlooms,such as the stiff sofa, is mostly of the Richardson period of the'80s and '90s. On a table, middle rear, are neatly spread outseveral conservative magazines and periodicals, including areligious publication.
TIME: A bright morning in October, 1917,GEORGE PINDAR, in the uniform of a first lieutenant of the army,enters by the doorway, upper right. He is a well set up young manof about twenty-seven, bronzed from his life in a training camp, ofan adventurous and social nature. He glances about the room, andthen lights a cigarette.ASHER PINDAR, his father, enters, lower right. He is a tall,strongly built man of about sixty, with iron grey hair and beard.His eyes are keen, shadowed by bushy brows, and his New Englandfeatures bear the stamp of inflexible "character." He wears a black"cutaway" coat and dark striped trousers; his voice is strong andresonant. But he is evidently preoccupied and worried, though hesmiles with affection as he perceives GEORGE. GEORGE'S fondness forhim is equally apparent.
GEORGE. Hello, dad.
ASHER. Oh, you're here, George.
GEORGE (looking, at ASHER). Something troubling you?
ASHER (attempting dissimulation). Well, you're going off to France, they've only given you two days' leave, and I've scarcely seen anything of you. Isn't that enough...?