~ Agravio ~

Courage, Betrayal and a Woman Scorned


A translation and adaptation
of

Ana Caro’s

Valor, agravio y mujer

ca. 1637—1650

New Adaptation by

Ian Borden © 2012


Original Translation by

Amy Williamsen (c) 2010


Adapted by Ian Borden with Amy Williamsen
Copyright 2010

2

Cast of Speaking Characters:

Don Juan de Cordoba, once promised marriage to Leonora
Tomillo, his servant
Don Fernando de Ribera, in love with Estella
Ludovico, Prince of Pinoy, friend to Fernando and also in love with Estella
Tibaldo, a bandit (played by the actor who plays Tomillo)
Rufino, a bandit (played by the actor who plays Fernando)
Astolfo, a bandit (played by the actor who plays Ludovico)
Doňa Leonora, disguised as Don Leonardo and sister to Fernando
Flora, disguised as Ribete and maid to Leonora
Estela, a Condesa (Countess)
Lisarda, her overly romantic cousin


~ Act One ~
Scene 1.1
[Enter Leonora holding a letter, followed by Flora.]
Flora:
Leonora, stop! You mustn’t act so rashly!
Leonora:
My deadly destiny awaits, Flora! When passion reigns, the heart can only burn!
Flora:
But when all that’s left is a cinder, that’s no good for anything. [Aside.] Young women in love these days — the way they talk!
Leonora:
And yet reason spurs me, too. I must take my revenge — I cannot eat, barely sleep, he haunts my dreams with his betrayal — Don Juan must die!
Flora:
[Aside.] See what I mean? [Aloud.] But why now? It’s been weeks since he left you.
Leonora:
My sister sends news that Don Juan has traveled north. Rumor says he will join the Spanish forces in Flandes.
Flora:
You will pursue him?
Leonora:
Across the sea if necessary!
Flora:
But why? Your brother is in Flandes. Don Fernando’s courage is legendary —let him take your revenge.
Leonora:
No, no one must know what I have done—oh, Don Juan, how could I have believed you? I returned your vows with kisses, matched you sigh for sigh, and you left me shamed, disgraced, and hiding from my family in this convent. My tears are my prayers —
Flora:
Oh, stop that. No more wallowing in self pity. Go to your sister, let her explain to your father and all will be made right again —

4
Leonora:
No! My father would kill me—and he would be right to do so. I have shamed the name of Ribera. All I can do is take my revenge.
Flora:
And how will you do that? Don Juan is a great swordsman.
Leonora:
I must try! His betrayal left me without honor, without family. I must slay him or die in the attempt.
Flora:
[Sighs to audience.] So you insist on traveling north.
Leonora:
I must.
Flora:
It’s a perilous journey.
Leonora:
What greater peril could I face than what I know now?
Flora:
But I’ve heard it’s awfully cold there. Not like the beautiful climes of Madrid.
Leonora:
It doesn’t matter. I will find him whatever the cost.
Flora:
All right, fine. If you insist on going on and on like that, I guess you mean it.
Leonora:
I have no choice. A woman’s shame can never truly be extinguished —
Flora:
I said stop that. I’ve already told you once. [Aside.] I love her like my own, but she really does prattle on. [Aloud.] Now, you can’t travel looking like this. A woman alone is never safe.
Leonora:
There is no safety, no refuge, I have —
Flora:
I know, I know, you have no choice. Well, if you must, you must. Just let me think for a second. [Pause.] Wait here a moment. I have an idea.
[Flora exits.]

5
Leonora:
My disgrace forced my retreat to this most secret convent. I hid even from my family; No one knows but my sister, who already knew my heart’s terrible sadness.
Yet even she did not know the depths of my desperation and how I have vowed to regain my lost honor. How could I have been so foolish, how could I have believed Don Juan? When he said he loved me, when he vowed to marry me—oh, what a faithless, cruel heart beats in his chest.
[Flora returns with a bundle of clothing.]
Only, you Flora, have faithfully stood by me, showing that a servant, and a woman at that, can have more courage, more honor than a gallant of Spain.
Flora:
Yes, yes, yes. Here, put these on. People who spent their last days at the convent left them behind. Not the way I’d normally choose my clothing, but beggars can’t be choosers. And yes, I left a donation. Now get dressed—if we’re lucky, no one will know you in these old clothes.
[She begins dressing Leonora in gentleman’s clothing.]
Leonora:
You’re right. I’ll make myself an Amazon —
Flora:
No, you’ll make yourself a man.
Leonora:
A man?
Flora:
As a man you can go where a woman can’t go, meet him face to face.
Leonora:
You’re right, for I must challenge him.
Flora:
Now if we can just fix your hair — there! You look like the God of love. What a physique, what legs, what feet! [Aside.] What a ridiculous getup for a young noblewoman.
Leonora:
But I must have a sword —
Flora:
Here.
Leonora:
Now I swear to all the skies, I will have his heart on my blade or die in the attempt.

6
Flora:
By Christ, I think the clothes have given you a new kind of courage.
Leonora:
I’m ready. I feel reborn. From henceforth, you shall call me Don Leonardo.
Flora:
But how shall I forget that you are my little Leonora?
Leonora:
You are mistaken, Flora. I am no longer a woman. His betrayal has changed me, made me a man, made me hard.
Flora:
[Aside.]Betrayal causes strange effects, but I’ve never heard of that before. [Aloud.] But, back to your plan, how can you travel alone, even in disguise?
Leonora:
You’re right, Flora. [Pause.] You must come with me.
Flora:
Me?!
Leonora:
Yes. You will dress like a male servant—named Ribete! A gallant always has a faithful servant. Side by side we’ll seek revenge!
Flora:
Side by side we’ll eat candies and drink tea!
Leonora:
We’ll chase him to the ends of the earth!
Flora:
We’ll sit by the fire and read a nice book!
Leonora:
We’ll find adventure on our epic journey!
Flora:
We’ll find adventure by going to the theatre!
Leonora:
No, Flora. You must help me find Don Juan.
Flora:
[Sighs.] And when you find him, you’ll kill him?

7
Leonora:
I will — por Dios. Don Juan shall not escape his fate!
Flora:
[Aside.] And, it seems, neither will my feet. Oh well. Someone’s got to look after her.
[Exit Leonora and Flora.]

8
Scene 1.2
[ Twilight. Outside, at the foot of a mountain. Sounds of lightning and wind gusts. Enter Don Juan.]
Juan:
Por dios! What a night! Caught in a tempest like no other! The rain, the wind!—and now I've lost my way—and is there any chance of finding a guide? No. Not in a wilderness like this. It almost feels like divine punishment —
[Enter Tomillo, with a huge pack on his back.]
Tomillo:
Don Juan! May a tiger, a rhinoceros,a crocodile, a serpent, a Cyclops, a condemned spirit,
and a devil—Dios forgive me—take you away!
Juan:
Tomillo, you fool, what are you on about?
Tomillo:
That you must pay for your terrible sacrilege—bringing us here—when you could have stayed with that angel —
Juan:
Stop spewing nonsense.
Tomillo:
Nonsense!? If you wouldn’t keep making vows and then —
Juan:
Shut your mouth! Your mumbling is maddening —
Tomillo:
Fine! But let me tell you one thing — I need to rest.
Juan:
No, Tomillo, I will lie down here amongst these trees, while you forage ahead to find our way.
Tomillo:
But, just for a little while?
Juan:
Had you not lost our mules, your burden would be lighter.
Tomillo:
I—lost the mules! Me?! When you—but—we had to leave so fast we never brought them along!
Juan:
Well, we can’t worry about that now. Go find a town with an inn and bring a horse to get me.

9
[Tomillo exits sullenly. Juan lies down and covers himself against the weather, sheltering against a tree. Estela and Lisarda enter from the opposite side, dressed for hunting and carrying bows. As Lisarda indulges in the romance of her words, Estela reacts with exasperation.]
Lisarda:
This way, Estela, down from this wild and lonely mountain, from this magnificent giant that stands against the stars. You will be able to reach the valley below where heaven's labors, less severe and more merciful, lighten the threatening blackness of the skies. Follow me cousin!
Estela:
Are you sure of the way? I’m cold. Me, a huntress? A curse on my pretensions.
[They walk down slowly, talking as they go.]
Lisarda:
And on the deer who so easily eluded you, whose haughtiness foiled your skill, and evaded the deadly point shot forth from your bow. Its swift steps urged us on, leaving us lost among these mighty forest giants. And now the heavens shake against us! Do you not see how the unstable crystal moves from its sphere, tearing the columns out of their orbs? And how the turbulent sky stages the fall of Phaeton? I have never seen such a frightening portent!
Estela:
Calm yourself, Lisarda ...
Lisarda:
Fear will turn me to stone, Estela. How can I go on in such a state?
Estela:
We’ll stop for a while and shelter beneath these oaks —
[Estela shares her disdain with the audience as Lisarda pontificates.]
Lisarda:
Yes, we'll defy the stormy heavens, or heaven will save us, for in the West a warm red glow already appears.
[They go off to one side as the bandits Tibaldo, Rufino, and Astolfo enter.]
Tibaldo:
Fine bandits we are, por Dios! Bandits—hah! Your laziness —
Astolfo:
Or bad luck —
Rufino:
Or bad weather —

10
Tibaldo:
Excuses. You’re like little girls with their sewing! Years of dedication to Mars’ warlike training—and what does it get us?
Rufino:
Daring!
Astolfo:
Pride!
Tibaldo:
Empty purses!
Rufino:
Don’t blame us! It’s not guts we’re lacking —
Tibaldo:
Huh!
Rufino:
It’s opportunity!
Astolfo:
Pssst! [Whispering.] Por Dios, if I'm not mistaken, opportunity is knocking right now.
Tibaldo:
May heaven grant us such pleasure!
Astolfo:
Shhh. Two women. Beauties. Over there. [He points to Estela and Lisarda.]
Tibaldo:
Let's approach like gallants.
Estela:
Oh, look, Lisarda, do you see those peasants?
Lisarda:
Yes, and they're coming our way.
Estela:
Help at last. Thank heavens! Good gentlemen, can you take us to shelter?
Lisarda:
Is the estate of Ludovico, the Prince of Pinoy, very far from here?
Tibaldo:
It's very close.

11
Estela:
Would you please show us the way?
Astolfo:
Of course, we’d be happy to escort such beautiful ladies.
Lisarda:
Your courtesy is the compass that guides us.
Rufino:
Don’t worry, we’ve got the perfect place to take you.
[The bandits grab the ladies. They scream. Don Juan awakes.]
Tibaldo:
And we won’t take no for an answer.
Lisarda:
Savages! What are you after?
Astolfo:
Don’t get upset, it will only make things worse for you.
Lisarda:
Get your hands off me!
Estela:
Take our jewels, you villains, and leave us alone. Oh, Lisarda!
Lisarda:
Oh, Estela!
Juan:
What do I see?
Two suns suffering an unjust eclipse?
O, troubled splendor!
O, barbarians who treacherously threaten their light!
Once again, beauty calls me to service.
Lisarda :
How can heaven hide its mercy?
Estela:
Why don’t you just kill us, you bastards.
Rufino:
That's not what we're after, dear lady —

12
Juan:
Well, what are you after?
[Juan attacks the three bandits.]
Perhaps to feel the sting of my sword.
Tibaldo:
El Diablo!
Juan:
You vile lowlifes, cowards, base slaves —
Tibaldo:
Shoot him, Rufino!
Astolfo:
Now!
[Rufino shoots and misses. He is threatened by Juan’s sword and flees.]
Rufino:
[As he exits.] Run! Tibaldo, Astolfo, run!
Tibaldo:
Let's get out of here!
Astolfo;
He fights like a demon!
Juan:
Not a demon, you swine! A much more dangerous foe—a man of honor!
[They exit and Don Juan chases them off stage. Estela and Lisarda recover alone on stage.]
Lisarda:
Oh, Estela.
Estela:
My dear Lisarda, your prayers were answered.
Lisarda:
Were they?
Here we are, alone, wilderness surrounds us —
The storm abates, but now the darkened claw of evening approaches.
What new torments await us?
Lions, wolves, bears?
What evil haunts this inky wood?

13
Estela:
All that haunts it is your tongue. I wouldn’t be half so frightened if you’d just be quiet. Ah! Someone else is coming. Hide.
[They duck behind a bush as Don Fernando de Ribera enters.]
Fernando:
I thought I heard their voices, but they're not here. This maze of a forest hides them like magic.
[The ladies emerge from hiding.]
Estela:
Oh, Don Fernando!
Fernando:
Estela! Are you all right? What happened? How?
Lisarda:
Subjected to the chaos of fortune —
Estela:
Oh, shush. Three bandits assaulted us.
Fernando:
Were you hurt? No greater misfortune?
Estela:
No Fernando; heaven was kind to us —
[Don Juan enters.]
Juan:
The barbarians who assaulted such perfection, such beautiful innocents, have seen their just punishment —
Fernando:
Die, bandit!
[He draws his sword and attacks Don Juan. They fight.]
Lisarda:
Don Fernando! No! This gentleman saved us!
Estela:
We owe him our lives and our honor.
[They stop fighting at Estela’s and Lisarda’s urging.]

14
Fernando:
Forgive me! My ingratitude doubles my debt. I am Don Fernando de Ribera. [He kneels.] Please, pardon my ignorance.
Juan:
There is nothing to forgive: Honor is its own defense.
Estela:
Give me your name, senor and tell me where you're from, so that I may know who has earned the debt of my heart and the reward of my purse.
Fernando:
I would ask the same, and if in the court of Flandes there is anything I can do for you, on behalf of the Condesa or for my own debt, come to me, and whatever you need I will gladly give.
Lisarda:
We are all so humbly obliged to you.
Estela:
Please tell us who you are.
Juan:
How could I resist the pleas of such a beautiful lady,
Whose eyes, like stars, guide my soul,
Whose voice washes through me like the waters of a cool stream,
Whose utterance is my very command.
Lisarda:
[Aside.] A true gallant!
Juan:
I was born in the city celebrated as the origin of letters,
Epilogue of valor and center of nobility:
In Cordoba was I born, and inherited its noble blood.
I was blessed to spend my youth in Madrid, and there found a thousand favors.
But like ivy, envy sprouted up around me; from one root came infinite shoots. And soon a thousand jealousies forced me from the city I loved.
I returned home, where the pleasures of Sevilla washed my sorrows from me.
I bathed in her beauty and her greatness —
[Prince Ludovico and Tomillo enter.]
Ludovico:
Don Fernando, you're here? Oh, my friend!

15
Fernando:
Prince Ludovico, has anything happened?
Ludovico:
You should tell me, it seems. Thank heavens you found Doña Lisarda and the Condesa. A coach awaits only a short ways off to take you to the palace.
Estela:
Let us go then, and please, have this gentleman come with us.
Fernando:
Condesa, go ahead in the coach; we will follow you.
Estela:
[To Lisarda.] I hope that he won't finish his story without us!
Lisarda:
[To Estela.] Not to worry, you'll find it out —
[The women leave with Prince Ludovico and Tomillo.]
Juan:
[Aside.] I was lucky the Prince came for Estela—my soul has already surrendered to her beauty—
and it may be best she not know my past.
Fernando:
The stars have aligned to bring us together. I would be obliged if you would call me friend.
Juan:
You make me think myself fortunate.
Fernando:
What brings you to Flandes?
Juan:
As I was saying, I was admiring the wonders of Sevilla, when one day I saw a woman whose beauty overshadowed everything around her. I saw her, loved her and in an instant, I wooed her.
Entreating her surrender, I pledged to be her husband; I shouldn’t tell you the rest. I left her without a goodbye, chasing the inconstant stars that guide me.
This is my story. I am Don Juan de Cordoba. Let the spirits of Andalusian hearts, of Spanish nobility shine. May I honor you as you honor me.
Fernando:
I am delighted to meet you Don Juan. I only wish my power in court equaled my affection for you. I will beg the Condesa to satisfy the debt that we all owe you. Until then, my home, my possessions and my service are yours.

16
Juan:
Por Dios, I don’t know how to thank you for so many favors!
Fernando:
Follow me.
[Tomillo enters.]
Tomillo:
Senors, in the fourth sphere, in imitation of Apollo's chariot, vying with the forest giants —
Juan:
Tomillo.
Tomillo:
A carriage is waiting.
Juan:
Show us the way.
[They exit.]

17
Scene 1.3
[Enter Doña Leonora and Flora in their disguises as Don Leonardo and Ribete.]
Leonora:
At last, my destiny can be realized. In disguise we traveled across Spain, and undaunted, went to sea.
Flora:
You may have been undaunted, but my stomach wasn’t.
Leonora:
Driven by the sadness of my heart, I have arrived more determined than ever. I will find Don Juan, I will find that traitor, and I will have his heart on my blade —
Flora:
[Aside.] What a grand thought for a young lady.
Leonora:
Or I shall die in the attempt!
Flora:
Let’s try to avoid that.
Leonora:
The ungrateful cur will die!
Flora:
No doubt?
Leonora:
I will have my revenge or I shall — [Sobs.] With Christ as my witness —
Flora:
[Aside.] More swearing? I thought I taught her better.
Leonora:
Oh, Flora, I don’t know if I can go on!
Flora:
Is this the heart that took us across Spain, across the sea, and now to Flandes! We should have a score of Don Juans, hundreds, thousands, even, so we may kill them all!
Leonora:
Please. Don’t mock me.
Flora:
I’m not. Your courage is inspiring. I will be heroic, too. Can't there be a brave manservant?

18
Leonora:
What’s got into you?
Flora:
I’m fed up with playwrights who depict all lackeys as frightened chickens. I may not be noble, but who says I can’t be brave? Por Dios, can't a servant be twice as brave as the master?
Leonora:
You've spoken well. And you are more than a servant; I couldn’t have made this journey without you, my dear friend, Flora.
Flora:
No, no longer Flora, my child. Ribete, Ribete de Sevilla, at your service. A brave man, a great duelist—
Leonora:
Yes indeed! Who one day fought three, four — no, twenty villains, one after another —
Flora:
And before he was through, Ribete had turned Sevilla’s stones to rust!
Leonora:
And the city feared the deadly blade of Ribete!
Flora:
Indeed. [Pause.] But really, how shall we stay alive? What do we do next?
Leonora:
The first thing we must do, Flora—Ribete, is search for my brother.
Flora:
And if he recognizes you?
Leonora:
He couldn’t. He left home when I was only six years old; there's no way he can know my face. If I can gain his favor at court, I will surely achieve my vengeance.
Flora:
Then, your name is to be —
Leonora:
No longer Leonora, but Don Leonardo Ponce de Leon. Don Leonardo—yes, that shall be my name...
Flora:
How many times, Don Leonardo, will women pester me with notes for you?! [Aside.] This already seems like a play where everything is resolved by a matchmaking buffoon. Next thing you know, I’ll end up stuck with some sort of clownish servant.
Leonora:
Oh, Flora — Ribete. People are coming. Hide!

19
[Don Fernando and Prince Ludovico enter.]
Fernando:
Well, senor, that's what happened.
Ludovico:
Astonishing!
Fernando:
Don Juan’s courage has led to more good fortune; as a reward, Estela has made him her steward.
Leonora:
Did he say Don Juan?!
Flora:
Shhh!
Ludovico:
That's fine, the Cordoban deserves her royal favor.
Fernando:
Indeed, her gratitude provides for him well. [Aside.] And yet I wish she favored me with such thanks.
Ludovico:
[Aside.] How this news tears at my heart!
[Fernando and Ludovico talk by themselves.]
Leonora:
[Aside.] Oh Dios, Don Juan — the Cordoban, he said! It must be him! So many sorrows I can’t hide them!
Fernando:
I'll speak to her on your behalf.
Ludovico:
I don’t understand, Fernando. Could Estela aspire to any greater height? Her wealth, her beauty, who could be better suited for her than I?
Fernando:
True.
Ludovico:
Is there in all of Flandes a more gallant, a more chivalrous man?
Flora:
[Aside.] And modest too!

20
Fernando:
Leave it to me.
Ludovico:
I shall. My trust is in you, my dear friend.
[Ludovico exits.]
Fernando:
[Aside.] Who knew the bonds of friendship could lead to such pain? To woo Estela for another!
Leonora:
[To Flora.] Flora, I’m going to ask him about my brother.
Flora:
[To Leonora.] If he knows him?
Leonora:
[To Flora.] Exactly. [Aloud.] Excuse me, senor.
Fernando:
Can I help you, young gentleman?
Leonora:
Perhaps, senor; I just wanted to know about a Captain.
Fernando:
A Captain? By what name?
[Leonora takes out some letters.]
Leonora:
These will tell you. I’m looking for Don Fernando de Ribera, Master of the Horse and Captain of the Royal Guard.
Fernando:
[Aside.] A charming young man! Perhaps he brings news of my family? [Aloud.] Well, here I am, young senor. You see before you Don Fernando de Ribera.
Leonora:
Fernando! [Catches herself.] Captain, I am Don Leonardo Ponce de Leon. [Gives Fernando the letters. Then aside.] Maybe luck is with me today!
Fernando:
From my sister?
Leonora:
You'll know by the handwriting.

21
[Don Fernando reads.]
Leonora:
[To Flora.] Flora, I'm scared.
Flora:
[To Leonora.] About what?
Leonora:
[To Flora.] What if he sees through my disguise?
Flora:
[To Leonora.] Is that the famous courage of Sevilla?
Leonora:
[To Flora.] Well said. Honor must give me courage—for without honor there is nothing.
Fernando:
You would have my favor regardless, Don Leonardo, but my sister’s wishes guarantee my service. How is she?
Leonora:
She misses you, as is only right.
Fernando:
Is she very beautiful?
Leonora:
And virtuous.
[Flora snorts.]
Fernando:
By my life, what brings you to Flandes?
Leonora:
Though my story is a painful one, Don Fernando, courtesy demands that I tell you.
Secretly I served a heavenly beauty, Juan — ita, the dearest friend of your sister, Leonora. Our love was a glorious union of two souls.
But an upstart Marqués — [She searches for a name to call him.]
Flora:
[Aside to Leonora.] Ricardo.
Leonora:
Ricardo, declared his love for my lady. How could I compete with his wealth and station?

22
He bought his way into her house with false pledges of marriage. Juanita spurned him, and Ricardo soiled her reputation in revenge. Her sorrow was mine. And when Ricardo appeared at her door, demanding favors to restore her name, justice gave my blade such thundering strength that I was able to chase him and his two bravos away.
The Marqués, scorned by my lady, defeated, jealous and desperate, now threw his power against me. I was forced to leave Sevilla. Before I embarked, your sister gave me those letters and this ring of hers, to prove the truth of my story.
Fernando:
I was happy just to know you, but now you have left me saddened and astonished. Do not worry, for in my heart you find a kindred spirit, a friend's kindness, a brother's love, for I couldn't love Leonora more dearly. This ring I gave to my beautiful young sister, may heaven keep her, when I left Spain many years ago. I haven’t seen her since, but you say she is doing well?
Leonora:
As well as I, standing before you.
Fernando:
Don Leonardo, I consider you my brother!
Flora:
[Aside.] How charming. Sometimes the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.
Leonora:
Your reputation for honor is justified.
Fernando:
We have another guest, but I trust you'll be comfortable sharing Don Juan’s chambers.
Leonora:
Don Juan?
Fernando:
A gallant gentleman from Cordoba.
Leonora:
I cannot allow this gentleman any inconvenience for the sake of my comfort.
Fernando:
Don Juan has his own rooms. It shouldn’t be any inconvenience. The Prince of Pinoy honors him for his great courage.
Leonora:
He has proven himself worthy?

23
Fernando:
The ladies certainly find him charming! But between us gentlemen, he’s dangerously inconstant—he told me he seduced and abandoned a woman from Sevilla. Now he says he loathes her and adores the Condesa Estela.
Flora:
[Aside to Leonora.] Be brave, my young master!
Leonora:
Perhaps he is not to blame.
Fernando:
Don Juan sang her praises, brought her jewels, promised marriage.
Leonora:
[Aside.] And so he won my heart. [Aloud.] And now he loathes her?
Fernando:
He's lost his senses over the Condesa.
Leonora:
[Aside.] Oh, cruel man! [Aloud.] And does she return his feelings faithfully?
Fernando:
She is grateful to him. I pray she only repays his bravery—for my heart is hers, if she would have it.
Leonora:
[Aside.] Oh, poor brother. [Aloud.] You too, know love’s pain!
Fernando:
But how he saved Doña Estela and Doña Lisarda is a story for later. Here is the key to Don Juan’s apartments. Why don’t you have your servant prepare your chamber?
Leonora:
[Aside.] This will kill me!
Flora:
[Aside to Leonora.] Courage, Leonora.
Leonora:
[Aside.] Right. [Aloud.] Go on in Ribete, I'll follow you.
Fernando:
I must meet Prince Ludovico, please excuse me.
[Fernando exits. Leonora slumps to the ground.]
Flora:
Leonora! Let's go back to Spain; there’s no good that can come of this.

24
Leonora:
Leave me alone.
Flora:
[Aside.] What a scene! If only she’d listen to me. [Aloud.] What are you moaning about now?
Leonora:
Didn’t you hear? Don Juan has given his heart to another.
Flora:
So? I thought the only reason you wanted his heart was to put a sword through it!
Leonora:
Go away — or I’ll put a sword through yours!
Flora:
Fine. So be it. [Aside.] Rages, fits, jealousies — Lightning and thunder, what’s next?
[Flora exits.]
Leonora:
Oh, Flora wait, I shouldn’t have — Heavens! What am I doing? Do these unwomanly clothes make me unkind to my friends? Or has my blood, steeped in bitterness, become poison, blackened by injustice?
Heavens, where are your thunderbolts? How can you allow such evil? How can you allow Don Juan to walk this earth?
Oh, I could die! Vengeance, por Dios, vengeance! My honor shall be restored, there on the proud summit of heaven for all to see!
[Leonora exits, sobbing.]

25
Scene 1.4
[A garden in Estela's home. Estela and Lisarda enter.]
Lisarda:
You’re thinking about Don Juan again, aren’t you? You seem to favor him.
Estela:
He seems nice enough.
Lisarda:
He certainly deserves our gratitude. How valiant and brave, how daring, how courageous he was!
Estela:
And in choosing you he has proven his good taste.
Lisarda:
Very witty, cousin. But I have seen the little looks he gives you, heard the way he praises you, even smelled the blossoms he sent to your chamber.
Estela:
[Sighs.] I admit, I admired his charm and his courage, but it didn’t last. I don’t ask for his smiles, his flattery or his gifts. I simply observe the courtesy due his service.
Lidarda:
And what about Ludovico, the Prince from Pinoy?
Estela:
Oh! Don’t even mention his name! Heaven save me from his ambition.
Lisarda:
[Aside.] Then perhaps Love rewards my sleepless nights!
Estela:
He’s a barbarian!
Lisarda:
You don’t love the Prince?
Estela:
No.
Lisarda:
No? But there is someone, is there not, who has finally breached those barricades of yours? Who has found his way into that too, too sensible heart of yours?
Estela:
Perhaps.

26
Lisarda:
Is that so? It couldn’t be that new gallant at court, Don Leonardo, could it? Discreet, handsome, unmarried —
Estela:
Oh, I don’t know what to do cousin — love has overwhelmed me! I am so restless, so anxious when I think of him. I am obliged to Don Juan. But the sight of Don Leonardo—oh—this young God of Love—he makes me think of no other.
Lisarda:
That's how the heartbeat of love begins.
Estela:
And my heart beats faster just thinking of him!
[Enter Don Fernando, Doña Leonora as Leonardo and Flora as Ribete.]
Fernando:
Estela, most beautiful Condesa, the duties of friendship bring me before you.
First, Ludovico, the Prince of Pinoy, begs your heart.
Second, Don Juan has surrendered his soul to you.
On their behalf, humbly, at your feet — [Aside.] If only I could reveal my own love, but I don’t dare! [Aloud.] I come to ask you —
Estela:
It doesn't matter what you come to ask, Don Fernando, since I do not wish to choose.
Fernando:
Then may I —
Estela:
Tell me no more about Don Juan or Ludovico.
Fernando:
[Aside.] Her disdain gives me hope.
Leonora:
[Aside.] She loathes Don Juan, what fortune.
Estela:
Don Leonardo, won't you speak to me? It’s been too long since I’ve seen you. How poorly you comply with the laws of courtesy, the obligations of a suitor.
Fernando:
[Aside.] And now a third rival that I am obliged to abide! [Aloud.] Since you have no message for Prince Ludovico or Don Juan, I must excuse myself.

27
Estela:
On my behalf , Don Fernando, tell them both that I do not love nor do I intend to marry.
Fernando:
[To Leonora.] Leonardo, you wait on the Condesa?
Leonora:
Si, Fernando.
Fernando;
Then I shall take my leave of both of you.
Estela:
Good bye.
[Fernando exits.]
Leonora:
[Aside.] And now my plan must go into effect. [Aloud.] My silence, most beauteous Estela, tells you more than words. Your eyes are two suns that are my dawn, two lightning bolts that flash your glory, two arrows that pierce my heart. They have so overwhelmed me that silent affection is the only language left me.
Estela:
Don Leonardo —
Leonora:
You are my life, my death. Without you I am all sorrow.
You render harm to gentleness; make severity appealing; thought, indispensable. You are discretion and beauty.
You turn my sorrow to joy: I humbly beg that you allow my love, that I may court you. My soul searches for favor in your sight: if your eyes deny me, where will my soul be?
Flora:
[Aside.] Not bad for a beginner. But she copies Don Juan! These are the verses he sang when he played the nightingale to her!
Estela:
Don Leonardo, do you flatter me or are you in earnest?
Leonora:
Let me prove my love.
I drink in the scent of you, sweeter than jasmine or the rose.
I glory in watching you—two stars are your eyes, your beauty greater than the heavens.

28
Estela:
[Aside.] His words are music!
[Aside to Leonora.] Enough, Leonardo, you have persuaded me. But we mustn’t be seen too often together. Come alone to the terrace tonight—by the gate that leads to the garden.
Leonora:
My soul awaits you.
Estela:
Until then, good bye. Come Lisarda.
[Estela and Lisarda exit.]
Leonora:
Well, what do you think of Estela?
Flora:
Poor girl — she dreams of getting a spark from two cold flints. But she’s already hot, full of love’s fire. And the only thing that will cool her down, you haven’t got! False love is dangerous, I say.
Leonora:
Oh no, Love is on my side. [Aside to Flora.] Ah, here comes the Prince of Pinoy (his vanity is written all over him, but his friendship matters to me).
Flora:
[Aside.] A pretty trinket, indeed.
[Ludovico enters.]
Ludovico:
Don Leonardo.
Leonora:
Prince Ludovico. It seems a century since I saw you last.
Ludovico:
I’m glad you value our friendship so.
Leonora:
I do, and that is why I must share a confidence with you —
Ludovico:
What do you mean?
Leonora:
It’s about Estela.

29
Ludovico:
What about Estela? Fernando told me of her disdain for me—that I was to leave her alone.
Leonora:
Are we friends?
Ludovico:
Who deserves my friendship more than you?
Leonora:
Then I have news that will touch your heart.
Flora:
[Aside to Leonora.] Watch yourself.
Leonora:
Estela told me she was mine; but for your sake I will not love her, were my life to depend on it.
But I have a plan that can help you. She expects to see me tonight at her terrace. Take my place. Speak to her using my name.
Ludovico:
What are you saying?
Leonora:
That by doing me a favor, you will do one for yourself; come, and I will tell you the rest.
[Ludovico and Leonora exit.]
Flora:
What is Leonora doing? If she's a woman like me, what won't she do? The most refined of us can scheme like the devil if we need to!
[Tomillo enters.]
Tomillo:
Por Dios, I don’t know where I'm supposed to find Don Juan.
Flora:
[Aside.] Don Juan’s servant, Tomillo. When Don Juan pledged his love to Leonora, this buffoon tried to have his way with me. Well, that’s what he thought he’d do, anyway. [Aloud.] Do my eyes deceive me, or do I see before me a man of Sevilla?
Tomillo:
Oh, paisano! Seeing a true Spaniard is a delight!
Flora:
[Aside.] I couldn’t agree less.

30
Tomillo:
You serve in Don Fernando's rooms.
Flora:
True, I am valet to Don Leonardo.
Tomillo:
How's the pay?
Flora:
He pays in advance.
Tomillo:
And does he give you provisions?
Flora:
As much as I want.
Tomillo:
It's not so good on my side. You are from Sevilla?
Flora:
Indeed. It must be six months since we left that beautiful city.
Tomillo:
I’ve been away longer than that. Any news?
Flora:
No—everything is very old there. The only thing new are the poets—there are so many that even women are daring to write plays!
Tomillo:
Dios save me! Wouldn't it be better for them to spin and sew? Women poets?!
Flora:
Yes, but if Rome could have women philosophers, who are we to say that women couldn’t bring fame to Spain?
Tomillo:
Well I can scarcely believe it. But what other news do you have?
Flora:
[Aside.] These questions could go on for a long time. I’ll ditch him as fast as I can.
[Tomillo and Flora exit and Don Juan enters.]
Juan:
Oh, the restlessness in my chest, the passion in my soul, so much yearning and no satisfaction—such trembling, such burning, such pleasure in suffering.

31
Fortune blesses me with the sight of Estela, but she is snow to my fire, a moth to another's flame. Leonardo has captured her love.
But how can his speech, his face, his physique and his name all resemble Leonora?
She still haunts me, slays me, as if Leonora came from Spain just to vex my eyes.
Estela’s love turns to Leonardo and I — my fears, my sorrows, my desires make my heart a burning volcano, my soul a fiery Etna. And I can do nothing but let my heart burn away to ashes.
[Flora re- enters, still as Ribete.]
Flora:
What love does to women! One moment Leonora is biting my head off, the next she’s holding my hand and crying. Such worry, such strife.
And such tricks! Now she wants me to give Don Juan this letter, but tell him it comes from Estela. [Sees him.] Aha! This will make his day!
Juan:
I love without prize and conquer nothing.
Flora:
This paper summons you to a pleasant task.
Juan:
Ah, you don’t know my misfortune. Only words from Estela could cool this burning torment.
Flora:
Then I hold ice in my hand. Por Dios, this paper is from the Condesa Estela.
Juan:
I could kiss the paper a thousand times!
[Reading.] “If you are certain of your affections, if you love me truly, your destiny awaits you. My love calls—come alone to see me in the garden.”
Oh, how my fortunes change! My faith has made me worthy. My constancy triumphed over her disdain. Oh, happiness—my suffering didn’t kill me, but such pleasure might.
Flora:
[Aside.] This one’s as bad as Leonora, one moment he’s in torment, the next it’s ecstasy!
Juan:
[Hands Flora a gold chain.] Take this as a token of my love.
Flora:
You really know romance! [She bites the chain to test the gold.]

32
Juan:
Tell her I will obey. Tell my beautiful Mistress that I am hers.
Flora:
Dios guide you.
Juan:
And you.
[Flora exits.]
Juan:
Quickly, shining orb, give way to the dark that follows in your path. My soul is singing, for soon I will possess Estela!
[Don Juan exits.]

33
Scene 1.5
[It is night. A terrace or courtyard with two balconies.]
Leonora:
[Pacing nervously.] What if he doesn’t take the bait? All this risk for nothing —
[Flora enters.]
At last! What happened, Flora?
Flora:
Hah! The ingrate took the note. And he rewarded me for it! [Shows chain]. I am to ‘tell my beautiful mistress that I am hers.’
Leonora:
Good.
Flora:
Are you sure this will work?
Leonora:
Tonight is my cure—or my death.
Flora:
[Aside.] I keep trying to make her avoid the second option, but she won’t listen. [Aloud.] Be careful, Leonora.
Leonora:
It must be done.
Flora:
Dios willing you won't screw it up.
Leonora:
You underestimate me!
Flora:
I didn’t say you were afraid. Take a look at you—brave, skilled, daring, even gallant. I am amazed by your strength!
Leonora:
Semiramis, wasn't she heroic? The Amazons, Zenobia, Camilla and thousands of others—they are my strength, my example—if I can be as strong as they, I can take on any man!
Flora:
Dios take pity on all the gallants in Flandes!

34
Leonora:
I’ve already taken pity on one. Prince Ludovico shall speak to Estela in my place—maybe then he’ll be cured of her, poor man!
Flora:
Well, go ahead—this is the window to the Condesa’s room. She spoke to me here the other day.
Leonora:
And you still have the key Fernando gave you?
Flora:
Yes. I’ve opened up the balcony.
Leonora:
Good—when you give it back to him, tell him that he is to meet Leonardo tonight on the terrace.
Flora:
[Aside.] Another of her crazy schemes, no doubt.
Leonora:
And be ready with my dress: my life depends on it.
Flora:
I should stay here with you—what if Don Juan —
Leonora:
No need! I know what I can do, Flora.
Flora:
Well, as long as you know. [Flora starts to exit, turns back and hugs Leonora.] Dios be with you, my lady.
[Flora exits.]
Leonora:
Dios willing, Don Juan will come calling long before Ludovico.
[Don Juan enters.]
Juan:
[Aside.] Por Dios, there’s someone here! I’ll try and find out who he is.
Leonora:
[Aside.] Even in this darkness, he seems quite handsome. I wonder if it's Don Juan? I’ll get closer.
Juan:
[Aside.] If he'd only speak, I'd know if he's Prince Ludovico.
[They walk toward each other].

35
Leonora:
[Aside.] Close enough. [Aloud.] Who goes there?
Juan:
One who goes where he pleases.
Leonora:
[Aside.] An arrogant reply—it must be him!
[Aloud.] You won't go anywhere if I don’t want you to.
Juan:
Who are you to decide my fate?
Leonora:
El Diablo.
Juan:
El Diablo? Hah! No big deal.
Leonora:
I am as a hundred, thousands, even millions when I am angry.
Juan:
Quite an army!
Leonora:
You mock me?
Juan:
It’s just that I’d rather not fight a legion from hell—I entreat you, if courtesy will work with demons, send them somewhere else—they couldn’t have any business with me. [Aside.] This madman could cost me my chance with Estela.
Leonora:
Indeed they do—there’s a thousand torments for a deceiver like you.
Juan:
A deceiver?
Leonora:
As bad as El Diablo himself!
Juan:
You make strange accusations for one I don’t even know —
Leonora:
And you have the tongue of a snake. Either we fight or you run in fear. It doesn't matter which.

36
Juan:
You’re mad! I don’t want to kill you. But I have given my word that I shall wait right here.
Leonora:
But you never keep your promises—why do you make them?
Juan:
[Aside.] He has mistaken me for someone who has offended him. Maybe I can make him see his mistake. [Aloud.] I don’t understand you, por Dios!
Leonora:
Well I understand, and since you know I speak the truth, that’s enough.
Juan:
You have a great spirit, great courage— I'm beginning to like you.
Leonora:
Hah! Your admiration means nothing—you are disloyal and unjust; deceitful, barbaric, and without true faith!
Juan:
I have never given any one cause to speak against me. What is it you want?
Leonora:
What do I want? You vow, beg, swear on your word as a nobleman and, false to your blood, your honor and your obligations, you flee at the first opportunity—now your sword gives you a chance to explain yourself, for mine demands reparation.
Juan:
You are mistaken.
Leonora:
I wish I were.
Juan:
The sun would stop shining before I’d break my word.
Leonora:
I know you did!
Juan:
I don’t understand what you say.
Leonora:
I do. That’s enough.
Juan:
Listen to me.

37
Leonora:
No—your lips do nothing but lie!
Juan.
Wait —
Leonora:
No need. Draw your blade. [She draws.]
Juan:
[Aside.] The challenge forces me.
[Prince Ludovico enters.]
Ludovico:
[Aside.] Don Leonardo told me to wait for him here.
Juan:
Out of courtesy, I restrained myself, knowing that you had mistaken me for another, but you have forced my hand and my blade. [He draws.]
Ludovico:
[Aside.] Swords on the terrace!
Leonora:
Disloyalty personified, I know you well.
Juan:
Come, then, if we must cross swords—
[They fight. Leonora wounds Don Juan.]
Ludovico:
[Aside.] This is Don Juan! Fortune smiles on me at last! I shall kill him by helping his enemy!
[He draws and stands beside Leonora.]
I'm with you—let the villain die!
Leonora:
No, that cannot be!
[She moves to Don Juan's side.]
I shall save him from a thousand deaths.
Juan:
[Aside.] Could anything stranger happen?

38
Ludovico:
Now you defend the offender?
Leonora:
His life matters to me.
Juan:
[Aside.] What is this, by heavens above? Such a change in a mere instant?
Ludovico:
Don Juan must die!
Leonora:
Not by your sword.
[Leonora fights with Ludovico.]
Ludovico:
[Aside.] I can barely catch my breath — what terrible skill!
Leonora:
It'd be better, senor, since this doesn't concern you, to leave before you are hurt.
Ludovico:
[Aside.] His advice seems sound—and as I must have privacy to meet Estela —
[Aloud.] Sound the alarum!
[Aside.] I’ll slip away, and return when the commotion has died down.
[Ludovico retreats and exits as a bell begins to toll. Leonora moves away from Don Juan.]
Leonora:
Ha! No fighting spirit in that one.
Juan:
[Aside.] A gallant and daring youth! He challenges me, fights furiously against both blade and reason, swears he’ll kill me, and then a moment later he defends me—but I don’t understand why.
Leonora:
The interloper is gone.
Juan:
You attack me, you defend me—why, por Dios? I will not fight you, senor. [He sheathes his sword.] Ample proof of my gratitude.
Leonora:
You mistake me! I acted out of greed—my happiness depends on killing you myself.

39
Juan:
You are wrong to believe I offended you.
Leonora:
I have been wronged, and by you.
Juan:
Then tell me who you are.
Leonora:
No. But I ask you—how could you turn your back on Leonora?
Juan:
Leonora?!
Leonora:
Now I must apologize. This alarum prevents us from finishing our dance. Buenos noches, senor.
Juan:
Wait! Tell me—Por Dios—How can you know such things? About my past? About Leonora?
Leonora:
Don’t worry—we will meet again soon, and my sword will sing vengeance for Leonora!
[Leonora and Don Juan exit in different directions.]
End of Act One

40
~ Act Two ~
Scene 2.1
[Night time. A courtyard with two balconies, separate enough that a scene can occur at each without interfering with the other.]
[Flora and Leonora, dressed as women, enter on one of the balconies.]
Leonora:
Dios, if you can ever help a deceiver, help me now. That alarum nearly spoiled all my plans. But if Don Juan pursues Estela as he pursued me, he will return. Just let him believe I am Estela. For if he can be disillusioned by her, he might break off his suit —
Flora
[Aside.] I don’t know why she pretends — she’s still passionate about Don Juan — but not for revenge. Crying every night—at least when she’s dressed like this it suits her—now a man like Ribete doesn’t—won’t—cry, oh, no —
Leonora:
Flora, go below and keep an eye out for Don Juan. [She exits.]
[Estela and Lisarda appear on the opposite balcony.]
Estela:
I can’t stand it when Leonardo is gone! Love makes my heart tremble. Oh, Lisarda, I don’t think I could do this without you.
Lisarda:
Estela, I can’t believe you dreamed up this foolish plan. How can I pretend to be you?
Estela:
In the darkness he’ll never know.
Lisarda:
But surely he’ll recognize my voice.
Estela:
No, you remember when he heard us singing in the courtyard—he couldn’t tell us apart!
Lisarda:
But why would you have me do this?

41
Estela:
How many times have you teased me for being the sensible one, for mocking romance, for having no need of poems and love sonnets? Well, now that I need words of love, my lips can’t make them. And so I need you to say them for me.
Lisarda:
But —
Estela:
If you are my friend, Lisarda, you will do this for me.
Lisarda:
It will never work —
Estela:
It will, just this once. But why is Leonardo so late? Maybe it was he that was dueling—the alarum might have been for him!
Lisarda:
Perhaps he's just waiting for the palace to settle down.
Estela:
Or maybe the delights of another woman detain him.
Lisarda:
Oh, stop it, I’m sure he’ll be here.
Estela:
Then you’ll do it? Oh, thank you. Oh, I think he's coming. I’ll hide!
[Estela moves to the back of the balcony out of sight to those below.
Ludovico enters at ground level.]
Ludovico:
I had to wait forever for the palace to settle down. And still Leonardo isn’t here. Or perhaps he’s gone already, tired of waiting for me.
[Fernando enters at ground level.]
I hear someone. Leonardo?
Fernando:
Ludovico?
Ludovico:
Fernando? What are you doing here?

42
Fernando:
Leonardo sent me to find you. But he wouldn’t say exactly why.
Ludovico:
Shhh! I need your help. I am to woo Estela tonight. At this very balcony.
Fernando:
[Aside.] Once again my loyalty is to be tested.
Ludovico:
Fernando, you know me. I am a soldier, a gentleman, a scholar, even. But I am no poet. Leonardo was going to help me. Now it must be you.
Fernando:
But I am no more poet than you!
[Don Juan enters below Leonora’s balcony.]
Don Juan:
I’m stunned —how could anyone have known about Leonora? That could ruin all my plans. But at least I’m here in time to meet my beautiful Estela.
Leonora:
There he is. Careful, love, careful. Tonight I shall either lose, or regain my life.
[Estela pushes Lisarda forward.]
Lisarda:
Is that you, Leonardo?
Ludovico:
It is I, my lady. [Aside to Fernando.] If am to pretend to be Leonardo, what do I say?
[Ludovico and Fernando move so that Fernando can’t be seen.]
Leonora:
Who's there?
Juan:
[Aside.] There’s Estela! [Aloud.] A sentinel lost in the battle of love.
Fernando:
Your slave thanks his good fortune that he is yours.

43
Ludovico:
Your slave thanks his good fortune that he is yours.
Leonora:
Love’s battles require brave soldiers. Are you such a soldier Don Juan?
Juan:
Indeed! Forced by the joy of your eyes, I have surrendered my soul so that nothing exists that is not subject to your will.
Leonora:
What? You love me so much?
Juan:
Your beauty demands it. Look in a mirror and you’ll understand my compulsion.
Leonora:
You disillusion me; perhaps vanity played too great a role in your passion.
Lisarda:
I was worried by your delay.
Fernando:
Then I find pleasure in this moment.
Ludovico:
Then I find pleasure in this moment.
Lisarda:
Why?
Fernando:
Because now I know my absence worries you.
Ludovico:
Because now I know my absence worries you.
Juan:
But no portrait, no mirror could ever reflect the glory that is before me —
Leonora:
Don Juan, I do not seek flattery. I just want to see you less ungracious.

44
Juan:
Me, ungracious? Por Dios, I adore you, zealously, absolutely!
Lisarda:
What kept you?
Fernando:
I was — playing cards.
Ludovico:
I was playing cards for a while.
Lisarda:
Did you win?
Ludovico.
Si.
Lisarda:
Then you’d best give me my share.
Fernando:
I cannot give you just a share—for I am all yours.
Ludovico:
I cannot give you just a share—for I am all yours.
Lisarda:
You're trying to get out of it— Come closer, listen.
Ludovico:
What a pleasant task! [Aside.] But I cannot let my face be seen!
Leonora:
You adore me absolutely? What about Doña Leonora, the lady from Sevilla. You stole her honor and her love.
Juan:
What Leonora? What lady?
Leonora:
No lies! Sometimes the truth can’t be hidden.
Juan:
[Aside.] Don Fernando must have exposed me.
Ludovico:
What do I do? I cannot reveal myself.

45
Fernando:
Stay in the shadows, and I will speak for you.
[Fernando has moved forward towards Lisarda and has taken Ludovico’s position.]
Fernando:
I am your slave, beautiful Estela.
Lisarda:
And I am yours. Our hearts have been one since the moment I saw you. Like the sun and moon together our glorious love will shine.
Leonora:
What good are your excuses? Confess that you loved Leonora.
Juan:
I confess it.
Leonora:
[Aside.] Oh, my heart! [Aloud.] Everything else is betrayal.
Juan:
That I loved her is true, but I didn't offend her honor, I promise you.
Lisarda:
And then, like an eclipse, you stole my heart completely Ludovico — Leonardo.
[Lisarda, realizing her mistake, moves away from the edge of the balcony.]
Ludovico:
Oh, I dream that she called my name—how her beautiful words inflame me!
Fernando:
I know Prince Ludovico pines for you. He's rich, he's noble—love may conquer all, but I can’t consider myself that fortunate.
Leonora:
You are fickle, Don Juan. Having enjoyed her favors, you could forget her?
Juan:
Your beauty alone is to blame.

46
Leonora:
My beauty? That's your excuse? Then you’ll simply chase the next beauty you see.
Juan:
Listen, on my life —!
[Lisarda pushes Estela forward.]
Fernando:
Before I press my suit further, I must know your true feelings for Ludovico.
Estela:
He is tiresome, proud, and ambitious, I loathe his very name.
Ludovico:
[Aside.] Shall my love suit, my gifts, my very name be treated so?
Juan:
[Aside.] Estela knows about Leonora. This is madness.
Leonora:
What’s your answer, Don Juan? Tell me.
Fernando:
And Don Juan?
Estela:
He doesn't please me, I was only grateful because he saved me—I love you alone, Leonardo.
Ludovico:
[Aside.] I desperately wish that she loved me so! A heart that can express love so well!
Juan:
Estela, listen! I’m as one who sees the morning star, who falls in love with its brilliant glow—but then, as the lantern of the heavens arising at dawn, you appeared. Leonora is but a far off star, and you the sun with its glorious rays.
Fernando:
Yet I know you doted on Don Juan.
Estela:
It would be wrong to deny it, but it was ... listen —

47
Ludovico:
Tell me.
Estela:
Like this.
[Estela forces Lisarda to take up the game again.]
Leonora:
So Leonora was but a shining star that dims in the daylight?
Juan:
Si.
Leonora:
[Aside.] I'm struggling with so many sorrows. [Aloud.] Then hear me.
Juan:
Your command is all.
Leonora:
[Aside.] What shall I say?
Lisarda:
As one who plucks a rose found deep in the shadowy wood, so did I choose Don Juan, obliged by his courage to accept him as a suitor. But then you appeared—as jasmine, your delicate scent drawing my soul. Though I admire the beauty of the rose, the jasmine holds more fragrant promise.
[Ludovico moves closer and speaks before Fernando can respond.]
Ludovico:
That is a strange metaphor, Estela, comparing Don Juan and his gallantry to the rose.
Leonora:
In the darkness you should adore the star; its light is a true guide, as Leonora guided you through the nights. Then, unfaithful, you abandoned her in search of my love. You loathed the star before you ever saw the sun.
Juan:
False reasoning!
Estela:
You're mistaken, Leonardo.

48
Ludovico:
Listen, by my life! The rose, to the very end, remains sweet and potent, a more powerful and lovely fragrance than jasmine ever bore. You should choose the rose.
Estela:
I cannot change my heart.
Leonora:
I have told you how I feel. Go back, back to Spain. It is no honorable feat to deceive a true and noble woman.
Ludovico:
You only confirm your inconstancy—my heart can take no more.
[Ludovico exits. Fernando moves to follow, then stays behind.]
Estela:
Don Leonardo, your words make me weep! But my love is firm. No misfortune will make me stop loving you.
Fernando:
Then I will be blessed as either a jasmine or a rose, and my love will bloom forever, Estela.
Juan:
I will hate Leonora more, then, for the love of you alone, Estela, and dream of your reward.
Leonora:
Then give up hope. I only asked you to come, Don Juan, to leave you disillusioned.
[Leonora exits.]
Estela:
Goodbye, my love, the glow of dawn is breaking.
Fernando:
Then don’t leave, so the sun can envy the light of your eyes.
Juan:
Estela! Can you leave so? Is there any greater despair? My heart pounds in the prison that holds it.
Estela:
Alas, that I could seal my love with a kiss.

49
Fernando:
I shall not disappoint.
[Fernando has climbed to the top of the balcony and kisses Estela.]
Estela:
There is no empty flattery in your lips. But I must run—adios my love!
[Estela retires with Lisarda.]
Fernando:
Oh, Estela! My lips burn from your glory!
[Fernando climbs down and exits.]
Juan:
Why do I falter? Where's my courage? My spirit? Love drives me on: I must conquer her disdain. If I do not, let my life die in the storm of my sorrows.
[Don Juan exits.]
Estela:
Oh, Lisarda—such a kiss! Only love could feel this way.
Lisarda:
[Aside.] How I envy her—if only the Prince would woo me so!
[Estela and Lisarda exit.]
[Leonora enters the courtyard and meets Flora.]
Leonora:
Oh, Flora, what have I done? I could have gone on, not knowing the truth—but now, now I know he loathes me —
Flora:
I warned you this was a dangerous game. [Sees Leonora crying.] Oh no, no more crying. You must be strong. We are in this so far, that the only course is for you to finish what you started.
Leonora:
You’re right. I have nothing left. No family, no honor, no friends.
Flora:
Hmmph!

50
Leonora:
Oh, Flora, how could I be so foolish? Of course you are my friend, and I shall cherish you always. But now you must help me—steel my resolve.
Flora:
Then what do I see before me? Is this the gallant that is the toast of all Flandes? Is this the swordsman feared by all? Is this the face that has made a thousand ladies swoon?
Leonora:
You’re right—I must again become Don Leonardo. It is time to finish our game.
[Leonora and Flora exit.]

51
Scene 2.2
[The next morning. A clearing in the woods. Enter Don Fernando, Don Juan and Tomillo.]
Juan:
O—I could wish a thousand ills on you for spilling my secrets! No other man knows my story.
Fernando:
You insult my courage, even more my affection; were my life in peril, my soul at risk, I would never betray you.
Juan:
Then why did you duel with me last night on the terrace? It had to be you — no one else could know!
Fernando:
I wasn’t there, I swear to you. Here is my sword: if I betrayed you, let your hand guide its point through my heart!
Juan:
Don Fernando, calm down—I believe you but, por Dios, this treachery is a torture!
Fernando:
Shhh. The Condesa.
[Estela enters with Lisarda and Flora.]
Juan:
[Aside to Fernando.] Oh, my restless soul. Don’t tell her anything.
Fernando:
Beautiful Estela, lovely Lisarda, today morning comes late, for together you are the sun and the dawn.
Estela:
More flattery on behalf of Don Juan?
Juan:
Never flattery; just the simple truth of your beauty.
Estela:
Enough, please. Don Juan, how long must I be obliged to your courage and courtesy?
Lisarda:
[To Estela.] Careful, Estela; you must hide your love for Leonardo—and Don Juan can serve as a shield from other eyes.
Juan:
When you are ungrateful, how can I be happy?

52
Estela:
No, Don Juan, not ungrateful. I have been, perhaps, careless in serving you.
Juan:
Your lack of care is killing me.
Estela:
Then you must pardon me, Don Juan. You will see how gratefully I will repay your affection.
Juan:
[Aside to Fernando.] Don Fernando, what a transformation!
Fernando:
[Aside to Juan.] See how mistaken you were?
[Fernando move away a short distance.]
[Aside.] That's the end of my hopes for Estela.
Juan:
Tell me, Estela, on your life, one truth.
Estela:
Upon my life.
Juan:
Who told you that before I arrived here I courted and seduced Doña Leonora?
Estela:
Who? You yourself did.
Juan:
Me? When?
Estela:
Now! Your tongue just shattered my ignorance.
Juan:
And, before now, who?
Estela:
No one.
Juan:
Then why did you chide me last night?
Estela:
Do you hear that, Lisarda? Don Juan says I spoke to him.

53
Lisarda:
It's clear he's mistaken.
Juan:
Mistaken how? From the balcony you accused me of seducing a lady from Sevilla.
Estela:
A poor joke, Don Juan, I would never do such a thing.
Juan:
[Aside.] Heaven help me. Is there another secret?—perhaps Estela loves me and wants to pretend for Don Fernando and Lisarda. Oh, love, to arms, to arms! Return to the battle—I must feign innocence. [Aloud.] Forgive me, I was only jesting to pass the time.
[Fernando returns to the group.]
Fernando:
I think the joke’s on you.
Lisarda:
Don Juan, was your lady very beautiful? For women from Sevilla are very famous —
Juan:
It was all a joke, I swear.
Estela:
If you deceived her it would be no joke, Don Juan.
Juan:
No, believe me! [Aside.] She’s like the ocean, ever changing; first she favors me, then she is angry, then favors me again, then denies me once more! And I, like a rock against the battering waves, never tire of adoring her.
Estela:
I will speak with you later. Don Juan, you must be more steadfast with women.
Juan:
Your disdain is unjust, fair Estela—you have my absolute devotion.
Estela:
Perhaps your beauty from Sevilla was the one treated unjustly?
Juan:
[Aside.] I mustn’t let her know I understand. [Aloud.] Fernando, we must go. Ladies, allow my servant Tomillo to stay and wait on you. [Aside.] I’ll let him be my eyes and ears.
Fernando:
Adios, dear ladies. [Aside.] How I wish that I could say more!

54
Estela:
Adios.
[Fernando and Don Juan exit.]
Did that seem odd to you?
Lisarda:
What, cousin?
Estela:
I don’t know. But somehow it feels like a woman's wiles are at work. Call Tomillo over—let’s see if he will tell us the truth.
Lisarda:
Good idea. Tomillo —
Tomillo:
How may I serve you?
Estela:
Tell me, who was this Leonora from Sevilla that Don Juan mentioned? Tell us the truth, and this purse is yours.
Tomillo:
Who? Leonora? [Aside.] The truth might be worth such a reward—but only if needed. [Aloud.] Oh, si—si, si. I didn't remember at first—little Leonoralita the streetwalker who made her living in Cantarranas.
Estela:
Yes, that must be the one.
Tomillo:
[Aside.] How easily she is deceived.
Estela:
What kind of a woman was she?
Tomillo:
Oh. Ugh! She wasn't a woman but a monster, with a wide forehead, narrow temples and a heavy brow.
Estela:
[Aside to Lisarda.] I must congratulate Don Juan on his selection.
Lisarda:
[Aside to Estela.] There’s no truth to be had here. [Aloud.] Thank you Tomillo. Feel free to follow your master.
[Tomillo exits.]

55
Estela:
Look, here comes Don Leonardo.
[Enter Leonora dressed as Leonardo.]
Leonora:
I asked my heart, most beautiful Estela, and it replied that I would find myself in you. And I must believe it, for seeing you, I discover myself in your eyes.
Estela:
Then, you cannot find yourself without me.
Leonora:
But I am not satisfied as to why you would love me. How can I merit —
Estela:
You are unjust to yourself, Don Leonardo. Have faith in your worth. I am traveling to the orchard this afternoon. Will you visit with me?
Leonora:
My pleasure is in obeying you.
Estela:
Then I will see you there.
[Estela and Lisarda exit.]
Leonora:
Dios keep me from evil. My adventure gets more and more dangerous!
[Don Juan enters.]
Juan:
[Aside.] Ha! Leonardo is here. I knew there was a reason for Estela to dismiss me so quickly.
[Aloud.] Don Leonardo.
Leonora:
My friend. [Aside.] Por Dios, I wish you really were! [Aloud.] How may I serve you?
Juan:
I beg you to grant me a favor: I have come to you, as a nobleman, to ask you since you are —
Leonora:
Go on. [Aside.] What ruse is this?

56
Juan:
I had won the favor of the Condesa Estella; I considered myself the happy master of her heart—until you arrived and bewitched her eyes.
For the nobleman you are, hear my plea and abandon your suit; not only was I first to love her, but I have pursued her like a hero of old.
Leonora:
[Aside.] Oh, you ignoble creature! [Aloud.] Your sighs of love well suit you, Don Juan. I can imagine your sorrows as if they were mine, so that I wish, por Dios— [Aside.] that you still pursued me! [Aloud.] — to free us both from grief, one way or another.
But I have different motives, other obligations. I am not your rival—for my soul is conquered by another—my Glory is in another’s eyes.
Juan:
You do not love Estela?
Leonora:
My words may not convince you, but this portrait shall. [Aside.] Now betrayal earns its punishment!
Juan:
[Looking at the portrait.] Heaven help me!
Leonora:
See if this perfection, this grace, this beauty, this charm —
Juan:
I am losing my mind!
Leonora:
— can be forgotten for Estela.
Juan:
[Aside.] This portrait is a basilisk to my eyes. As if I had beheld the face of Medusa and been turned to stone.
Leonora:
You look surprised.
Juan:
I have seen that lady before. [Aside.] Oh heavens—and that lady once was mine.
Leonora:
Her love bathes me in glory—if I live, the sweet bonds of marriage will join us. But first I must punish an insult and kill a criminal.

57
Juan:
[Aside.] What is happening? How do I not respond?—challenge this slight to my honor? Leonora unfaithful? She promised she was only mine!
Leonora:
Don Juan, you seem ill.
Juan:
[Aside.] But I vowed to be her husband. I abandoned her. I am the guilty one. [Aloud.] Don Leonardo—
Leonora:
What is it?
Juan:
In this portrait, I have seen my death.
Leonora:
[Aside.] Oh, you fool! You see the portrait but not the original. Do you now deceive even yourself?
Juan:
What pledge of love do you owe this lady?
Leonora:
I have earned her arms and her favor; I leave the rest to your imagination.
Juan:
[Aside.] The wingéd archer tortures me! [Aloud.] I confess, I still adore her. But her offense will ever ring in my ears. Who could imagine Leonora's honor so easily stained? But it is no matter—for honor’s sake I must kill you!
Leonora:
[Aside.] He testifies both for and against me. Let's twist the cords even tighter. [Aloud.] So you are my enemy?
Juan:
Unfortunately, yes Leonardo.
Leonora:
Leonora could not bear to tell me your name. I am sad to learn it, Don Juan de Cordoba—my heart darkens to know I must kill you.
[They fight. Don Fernando enters.]
Fernando:
[Aside.] Don Leonardo and Don Juan fighting! [Aloud.] My friends, cease your quarrel!
[Fernando interrupts the fight.]

58
Fernando:
What were you thinking?! Why the naked steel of your blades?
Leonora:
Naked blades? Indeed, the only way to practice fencing.
Juan:
Yes, the way to discuss the work of the masters, of Caranza, Narvaez.
Fernando:
Sharp edges to discuss fencing techniques?
Leonora:
Yes, to truly learn the art of the punto, the curves and angles of the famous fencing master — [To Juan.] What if he heard what we were talking about?
Juan:
[To Leonora.] I don’t care, let the world know.
Leonora:
[To Juan.] Keep this hidden or I will denounce you to the world.
Juan:
[To Leonora.] No promises when I am angry, Leonardo.
Fernando:
Did my eyes and ears deceive me? You fought furiously.
Juan:
It is the art of fencing. Even when I practice, I fight in earnest. Can you do less, Leonardo?
Leonora:
Not if I am to take your lesson to heart. [Aside.] Dios preserve me.
Juan:
[Aside.] Ah! Why must Fernando interfere?
Leonora:
[Aside.] Interrupted by my brother—if he only knew his honor was at stake, too!
Juan:
I'm going to Armindo's gardens for a while this afternoon, Leonardo. Meet me, if you wish.
Leonora:
I'll come with great delight. Perhaps, to please Fernando, I’ll bring blunted swords.
Juan:
An excellent idea. Are you staying here, Fernando?

59
Fernando:
Si.
Juan:
Then, adios, mi amigo. [To Leonora.] Your word, Don Leonardo?
Leonora:
[To Juan.] Of course.
[Don Juan exits.]
Fernando:
Leonardo?
Leonora:
Si?
Fernando:
Estela tells me Prince Ludovico is courting her again—and to deflect him she has expressed her gratitude to Don Juan—but I suspect her true favor is for you —
Leonora:
Stop, please.
Fernando:
Then you already understand. Why must you incite such public favor from the Condesa? [Aside.] Heaven knows how it hurts to be her go-between.
Leonora:
Don Fernando, if I have encouraged Estela's love, I will abandon it.
Fernando:
What change is this?
Leonora:
[Aside.] Careful Leonora.
Fernando:
I would ask that you share your intentions with me.
Leonora:
In time, I promise. [Aside.] I had better distract him with some ploy. [Aloud.] I hear the Condesa has wondrous horses. Will you show me?
Fernando:
I’d be happy to, Don Leonardo.
[Fernando and Leonora exit].

60
Scene 2.3
[A courtyard. Tomillo enters.]
Tomillo:
[To the audience.] Let me tell you, a servant’s life is never an easy one, and maybe I tend to escape a little too often into the realm of the grape, but today I am paying for it. Oh, my head. Feels like a melon about to split. Ribete gave me some medicine, but all I feel is sleepy.
[Flora enters, dressed as herself.]
My master is on another mad quest—one of these days he’ll get himself killed, and I won’t be party to it! To hell with it all! I'll just lie down—right here. Whew! That medicine Ribete gave me is strong stuff! How soft the ground feels!!
[He lies down.]
And here I thought it might break my bones. Here’s a happy change—the servant gets to sleep while the master chases all over the —
[He snores.]
Flora:
[To the audience.] Happy medicine indeed: he fell like a rock!
[She begins taking everything out of his pockets and undressing him and putting on his clothes while she talks.]
Let see what he’s got. A handkerchief. Or so it seems—it boasts tobacco stains and a bad cold! Hmm, a pair of knuckle-bones, what a great martyr's relic this bum brings along! A deck of cards: what a devout book of prayers the lout carries! What's this? [Pulls out a sausage.] What a silly shape these things are. Men—to think that this could give you pleasure! [She starts to turn him over.]. Ooh! He’s a fat one, the rogue! Don’t let him wake up, by all the saints!
[She turns him over.]
At last, his purse! One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight. Oh, sweet archive of coins and hope, I look at you with reverence. Now ladies, if a man ever asks you to give up your treasure, make sure he has some of his own first! [Having finished dressing in Tomillo’s clothes, she pockets the purse. She now looks like Ribete. Tomillo is in his underclothes.]
Meanwhile, Leonora is all stirred up, without telling me why or where she’s going—she just keeps muttering something about a garden and Don Juan. I'll trace her steps, for I can't believe that any good will come from this. But I’d better wake this lump of clay just in case I need help. Come on, you big sack of potatoes! [She shakes him awake.]
Tomillo:
Oh, my head!

61
Flora:
[Aside.] This guy hunts hangovers for a living.
Tomillo:
No need to talk so loud —
Flora:
You’re not sleeping, are you Tomillo?
Tomillo:
No.
Flora:
Not dreaming?
Tomillo:
No, not that either. [Aside.] This lunatic wakes me up then asks me if I'm sleeping!
Flora:
But where are your clothes?
[Tomillo stands up.]
Tomillo:
What? Ah! Where’s my purse?!
[Upset, he searches.]
Flora:
Your purse? Where did you put it?
Tomillo:
It was in my pocket.
Flora:
But you don’t have any pockets.
Tomillo:
Don’t you think I know that?!
Flora:
Wait. Don’t get upset. Let's look for it.
Tomillo:
Why bother? My life has been stolen! Oh, purse of my soul!
Flora:
Shall we compose an elegy in its honor —

62
Tomillo:
Oh, I could weep! More than women, more than drink, did I love it so.
Flora:
[Aside.] What? I swear to Christ I'll hit him. But no— [Aloud.] Tomillo, I think I know how to get your purse back.
Tomillo:
How? Quickly, tell me.
Flora:
Are you a Christian, Tomillo?
Tomillo:
Through and through.
Flora:
Think of Dios—perhaps you are being punished for your wickedness.
Tomillo:
What wickedness? I’ve done nothing that needs penance.
Flora:
No women? No drink?
Tomillo:
Well—maybe.
Flora:
Well, if you swear to give those up, you may be rewarded with the return of your purse.
Tomillo:
Yes, maybe you’re correct. [Aside.] I will swear, but unless my purse miraculously appears, my vow will mean nothing, for I’ll never give up drinking and women!
[Aloud.] I swear to Dios almighty and all the saints above that I will give up drinking and women if my purse is returned to me.
Flora:
And you must promise, that if you ever meet a woman more clever than you, you will marry her.
Tomillo:
Why not? [Aside.] As if that would ever happen. [Aloud.] And I swear by the baby Jesus and his mother Mary that I will marry any woman who can outsmart me—if my purse is returned.
Flora:
And here you are.
[Hands him the purse.]

63
Tomillo:
Mysterious ways, indeed.
Flora:
[Aside.] I'm leaving before I beat this poor guy. [Aloud.] Senor Tomillo. [Aside.] Now to check on Leonora.
[Flora exits.]
Tomillo:
If I was back in Sevilla, I’d swear that Flora was behind all this—nah! Couldn’t be. But even if she had her vengeance, at least I have my coins!
[Tomillo exits.]

64
Scene 2.4
[Scene changes to a garden at sunset. Don Juan enters.]
Juan:
Madness! Confusion! Sorrow overwhelms me, infamy condemns me, and jealousy burns my soul! My only hope is death—with honor.
[Leonora enters.]
Leonora:
Forgive me for being late; I could not escape Don Fernando.
Juan:
But you are here, Don Leonardo, as honor demands. Death may call me, but I am ready.
Leonora:
Don Juan, I too am ready. By killing you, I'll be free to marry the one I chose.
Juan:
Just remember that if you kill me, you marry my widow.
Leonora:
At last you admit your offense. But enough, steel speaks better than words.
[They fight as Don Fernando and Prince Ludovico enter.]
Fernando:
Ribete told me to come as quickly as possible, and now I see why.
Ludovico:
Gentlemen—stop this at once!
[Fernando and Ludovico get between them. Don Juan and Leonora cease fighting.]
Well, gentlemen?! Friends and bare steel?
Juan:
[Aside.] Oh, ungrateful Fortune, to steal my end from me!
Fernando:
This is practicing with blunt swords? These are the steps of Narvaez? Don Juan, you duel with Don Leonardo, to whom I am bound by honor: is this how you repay my friendship?
Don Juan:
[Aside.] Leonora, your curse follows me.
Fernando:
You, Don Leonardo, how can you be so senseless, courting danger in this manner?

65
Leonora:
I am doing what honor demands. You have no reason to berate me.
Fernando:
Then explain yourself.
Leonora:
Don Juan will tell it better.
Juan:
[Aside.] How can I admit what I have done?
Fernando:
What’s this? You don’t respond?
Juan:
Let Leonardo explain the reason.
Leonora:
Shall I announce the fullness of your sin? Don Juan told you—oh faithless!—about his secret love and his betrayal. And still he courted Estela and sought to marry her. But here is the most painful part for you, Don Fernando. The object of his betrayal was Doña Leonora de Ribera, your sister.
Fernando:
Leonora?!
Juan:
Wait, wait, Leonardo. [Aside.] Ice has covered me. [Aloud.] Leonora is Fernando's sister?!
Leonora:
Yes, Don Fernando. I fight Don Juan for Leonora’s honor.
Fernando:
Don Juan, is this how you repaid my friendship?!
Leonora:
Don Juan promised her marriage, stole her heart and then crushed it with his betrayal. I, too, loved her, Fernando. She confessed to me the shameful history, saying more with the pearls she cried than with the words she said; and I, a true lover, promised to avenge her offense. With Don Juan's death, I was to be her husband. And I will be, Don Fernando, if I don’t die by Don Juan’s hand. In the name of honor, I must avenge this offense as it is mine and Leonora's.
Juan:
She will never be yours! Heaven help me!
Fernando:
Is there any greater confusion? Today, I lose life and honor. Oh, my lascivious sister! Don Juan, I sever the bonds of friendship.

66
Juan:
[Aside.] My shame overwhelms me. [Aloud.] If I had known she were your sister —
Fernando:
What would you have done? Is there an end to such misfortune, Prince Ludovico?
Leonora:
[Aside.] At last, revenge begins its work, and yet I feel no pleasure. [Aloud.] I adore her, Don Fernando, and I still would have her.
Juan:
No! I love her. [Aside.] Oh, confusion. [Aloud.] And yet I cannot marry Leonora, even if Leonardo dies. Oh, if she'd only been honorable!
Fernando:
What a labyrinth!
Ludovico:
Don Juan speaks rightly. If you marry Leonora to Don Leonardo, how can she accept him if Don Juan lives? And Don Juan must kill Leonardo. And then you must kill Don Juan. But he is under my protection, so then I must kill you. So go the precepts of honor.
Fernando:
You’re right. We must all kill each other. I can see no other solution.
Ludovico:
Nor can I, por Dios, barbaric and bloody as it is.
Leonora:
[To Juan.] If Leonora had not broken the bonds of your love, if she hadn't responded to my advances, you would love her?
Juan:
I would adore her.
Leonora:
Then perhaps she can satisfy your misgivings.
Juan:
What do you mean?
Fernando:
Where is she?
Leonora:
Nearer than you think.
Juan:
What? How?

67
Leonora:
Have patience for a moment and I will bring her.
[Leonora exits as Estela, Lisarda, Flora (as Ribete) and Tomillo rush in.]
Estela:
Prince Ludovico, Don Fernando. Is it true? Has Don Leonardo been fighting with Don Juan?
Fernando:
Si, Condesa.
Flora:
Isn’t that just what I said?
Lisarda:
But Don Leonardo isn't here.
Estela:
Gentlemen, what happened?
Fernando:
I don’t know what to say, I can't speak.
Lisarda:
Ludovico, listen.
Ludovico:
[Aside.] The sight of Estela stings again—those words of passion—if only they’d been to me. [Aloud.] What did you say?
Estela:
What has happened to Don Leonardo? Where is he?
Ludovico:
I will tell you as best I can.
[Ludovico, Estela and Lisarda move apart.]
Fernando:
[Aside.] I must satisfy my honor or lose my life—and sister, you must lose yours! Oh, I'm losing my mind!
Flora:
[Aside.] Where is Leonora? This mess must be her doing!
Tomillo:
Flora, come over here.

68
Flora:
Why would I want to?
Tomillo:
So I can ask you a question —
[Tomillo undoes some aspect of Flora’s costume to reveal that she is a woman.]
Aha!—how long have you been here?
Flora:
Why would you want to know?
Tomillo:
Just wondering if you knew anything about a missing purse.
Flora:
Don’t worry, I wouldn’t steal your coins.
Tomillo:
It’s not the coins I was worried about —
Fernando:
[Aside.] I can stand it no longer. [Aloud.] Don Juan! You have dishonored my family, broken the bonds of friendship. If you have any honor left, draw and face me!
Juan:
I still consider you my friend, but I will never deny the duties of honor!
[Don Juan and Fernando draw and begin to fight.]
Flora:
Wait! Cease that silliness. If you’d only turn around you’d see the object of your quarrel.
[Leonora enters, dressed beautifully as a woman.]
Fernando:
Leonora?!
Ludovico:
What's this?!
Juan:
Leonora!
Leonora:
Brother, prince, and husband—I forgive you for the poor opinion you have of my love. Be satisfied that I have arrived, constant and resolute —

69
Juan:
What?!
Leonora:
I traveled from Spain to Flandes to defend my honor. I came to take Don Juan’s life—that's what betrayal can do to a woman’s heart. I would have killed him, too—and my heart would have died in the same moment—but then I saw him repent. I was Leonardo, but now I am once again Leonora. Will you love me?
Juan:
I will adore you.
Flora:
[Aside to audience.] At last! Leonora's plots are coming to an end.
Fernando:
Such good news leaves me confused and amazed, sister.
Ludovico:
Could there be any happier development?
Estela:
Leonardo? Leonora? You deceived me?
Leonora:
It was necessary, Condesa. I beg you to forgive me.
Estela:
No need, Leonora. Let us be sisters. But—oh!
Leonora:
What’s the matter?
Estela:
Did you—last night—no, it couldn’t be —
Leonora:
No Estela, it wasn’t me.
Estela:
But then who came to see me on the balcony?
Juan:
It was I, Estela.
Estela:
Don Juan?

70
Leonora:
No husband, it was I whose beauties you praised last night.
Juan:
Then my heart sang true.
Estela:
Then who?
Ludovico:
It was I, Estela, who looked up to see your glory, and whose words set a fire in my heart.
Estela:
Then Ludovico, I judged you wrongly, that such a kiss could set a fire in mine.
Ludovico:
A kiss? I experienced no such joy!
Fernando:
Forgive me Estela. I can explain.
Estela:
Fernando?
Fernando:
I have loved you since I first saw you. Friendship to Prince Ludovico and Don Juan forced me to woo you on their behalf. Last night, inspired by passion, I trespassed beyond my place. Forgive me, but it was I who kissed you.
Estela:
No trespass at all. [Pause.] You love me, Fernando?
Fernando:
I am yours if you will have me. But we must thank Leonora—her intrigues caused this great fortune.
Flora:
And if her servant can be so bold, there is one more trick to go.
Leonora:
What do you mean, Flora?
Flora:
Lisarda confessed to me that—last night at the balcony—but it is Lisarda’s story to tell.
Ludovico:
Lisarda?
Lisarda:
It was I, Ludovico, who spoke for Estela. It was I whose words of love moved you so.

71
Ludovico:
Then my happiness lies with you. Lovely Lisarda, please, give me your hand.
Lisarda:
I pledge you my hand and my soul.
Flora:
Three by three they've paired off in marriage. To make it four, Tomillo, you only have to obey your oath.
Tomillo:
But how did you—I see I have been tricked again. But an oath is an oath and so it must be. [Aside.] I may become husband, but in my house I will be no master.
Leonora:
Fernando, Flora has been a faithful companion on my journey and shared the risks to life and reputation. Can you not reward her?
Estela:
Indeed, I will provide a dowry of six thousand ducats.
Flora:
And I will keep track of the coins, since any fool who marries a fool will need them.
Tomillo:
And I lose it all: freedom and coins in one blow.
Flora:
Well leave me the coins and we can both keep our freedom. [Pause.] Well?
Tomillo:
I’m thinking, I’m thinking!
Don Juan:
Do not think too long my friend. You’ll lose a heart to share your life, and nothing could be more precious.
Leonora:
A lesson to be shared by all. And here, esteemed audience, our story ends, with courage rewarded, betrayal undone and scorn turned to love.
End