Part 3 out of 3
_Fifth Child (Rag doll_):
My dolly did not come from France,
Nor faraway Japan;
She's neither Spanish, Dutch nor Swiss,
She's just A-mer-i-can.
I know she is not beautiful,
Nor very finely dressed,
But I don't care for that--I think
American dolls are best.
_Sixth Child (Eskimo):_
My dolly is an Eskimo
From near the Arctic Sea;
Kris Kringle brought her in his sleigh
On Christmas eve for me.
She always wears this dress of fur,
Because where she was born
It is so very, very cold,
No light clothes can be worn.
But when she's been with me awhile
I think I'll make a change
And dress my doll in colors bright;
Then she'll not look so strange.
_Seventh Child (Holding a Teddy bear behind her_):
Now you all think your dolls are fine.
Of that I'm well aware;
But I have one to beat them all--
For mine's a Teddy bear _(holding it up_).
He doesn't wear a fancy dress,
He likes his coat of brown,
And he is just as handsome
As any doll in town.
I like to hold him in my arms,
And rock him in my chair,
Because he looks so cunning--
My little baby bear.
_Eighth Child (Doll dressed as infant_):
My doll's so very sleepy
She can't hold up her head;
She's just a wee, small infant,
And it's time she was in bed.
Your dollies all look sleepy, too,
And so I'm going to say,
"Let's sing our little lullaby
And carry them away."
(Tune--"There is a Happy Land.")
_(To be sung very slowly and softly_.)
Here comes the old Sand Man,
Close, close your eyes;
He'll catch you if he can,
So now be wise.
Then while you sweetly sleep,
Angels their watch will keep,
Bright stars will o'er you peep
Down from the skies.
_(Tiptoe softly off the stage, holding the dolls as though asleep, and
humming the tune very faintly_.)
* * * * *
BY A. CONSTANCE SMEDLEY.
_Greening, Sweeting_, Ladies to the Princess.
_Red Pepper_, the scullion _(Prince Fairasday)_.
_Frip, Tip, Snip, Pip_, Brownies.
Chorus of Cooks and Brownies, if desired.
TIME. Christmas Eve.
SCENE: The Kitchen in the Castle of Princess Fadeaway. Open
fireplace down R. in which the fire burns, and casts a red
light on the scene. Dresser against wall L. on which stands
a pile of dirty plates, tin basin and soap, various culinary
utensils, and a huge pepper-pot. Door up back L. Table centre,
which is spread with white cloth, bordered with a quaint
design. An old-fashioned wooden armchair R. of fireplace. Door
up R. Stool by dresser. Chair behind table. As the curtain
rises, the stage is quite dark, lit by a faint gleam from
fireplace. Mysterious music, which resolves itself into the
air of "Whist, whist, whist. Here Comes the Bogie Man." The
_Brownies_ heard singing behind the scenes. They dance in one
by one mysteriously round stage, in follow-my-leader fashion,
over chair and stool, and crawl under table, round and round
room as they sing.
OPENING CHORUS. (Air: "Whist, whist, whist! Here Comes the
Whist, whist, whist!
Here comes the Brownie man!
The Christmas pie is made to-night!
We'll steal it if we can.
Whist, whist, whist!
The scullions will be fled!
Oh, what a time we'll have to-night
When everyone's in bed.
_(Enter Frip dramatically L.)_
_Brownies_: Frip! _(All prostrate themselves, touching ground with
_Frip_: The deed is done! The scullions all are packing!
_Brownies_: Oh, noble Frip!
_Tip_: How did you manage it?
_Frip (seating himself on arm of chair. Brownies sit on floor centre,
facing him, sideface to audience):_ I bellowed so--Oooooooh!!!!
_(groans)_ and tweaked their ugly noses, and whispered through the
keyhole, "Wait till you guard the Christmas pie to-night!" until they
all fled shivering to the cook, to give him notice! And now none will
be left to guard the pie!
_Brownies_: 'Tis ours! 'Tis ours! _(Brownies rub themselves
_Frip_: Hush! Now the kitchenmaid and cooklet come, to make all ready
for his highness the head cook! We must leave them in peace until the
pie is made! But then--
_Brownies_: We'll steal it! _(Singing.)_
Whist, whist, whist!
Here comes the Brownie man,
The Christmas pie is made to-night
We'll steal it if we can!
Whist, whist, whist!
The scullions will be fled!
Oh! what a time we'll have to-night
When everyone's in bed!
_(They dance off_ R. _Music changes to a bright march. Enter the
Kitchenmaid and Cooklet. The Kitchenmaid is a short, fat, rosy, brisk
little girl. The Cooklet is a lanky, lazy, sentimental-looking girl.
The Kitchenmaid carries pasteboard, with pie-disk, rolling-pin, basin
of pastry, mince meat, etc., and enters staggering under her burden.
The Cooklet carries a small basin with three apples and a knife, and
eats apples as she peels them.)_
_Kitchen_: Oh, my eye and Betty Martin! What a pie we're going to make
to-night! Now look sharp, Cooklet, and peel the apples, for the head
cook will be here in half a minute, and the Princess, too, to give the
final stir-about; and if things aren't ready for her, we shall have
our heads chopped off. Oh, dearie, dearie, dearie, dear! _(Takes
apples from Cooklet and peels them briskly.)_
_Cooklet (sitting on stool, yawning)_: Ah, it's all very well for the
Princess! Nothing to do but eat and sleep all day. I wish I were she!
_Kitchen_: My word! I thank my stars I'm not! There she sits all day
with those stuck-up ladies, who rule her and fool her and manage her
and bully her till she can't call her soul her own! And all the nice
young princes who come riding to the castle are sent away without
getting so much as a peep at her, because her ladies are so afraid
she'll marry one, and then their turned-up noses would be out of
_Cooklet_: They tell the princes that the Princess is too weary to be
troubled with them!
_Kitchen_: Trouble, indeed! She'd find it no trouble to choose a
sweetheart from those nice young men if she were allowed to see them,
but she'll never do that, if her ladies have a word in the matter!
_(Furious talking outside.)_
_Kitchen_: Oh dearie, dearie, dearie, dear! If it isn't the head cook!
And oh, my stars, what's happened?
_(Enter Head Cook, angrily. Kitchenmaid and Cooklet both stand
trembling with fright.)_
_Head Cook_: Nevaire did I hear such impertinence. Who has gone, do
you sink? Who has packed up their traps and left me to-night--to-night
of all nights! Ze night I make ze Christmas pie! Ze night ze Princess
comes with all her ladies to give ze final stir-about! Who? Vat? Ven?
Vy? Vy?? vy???
_Cooklet and Kitchen (falling on their knees, clasping their hands
entreatingly)_: O sir, pray calm yourself!
_Head Cook (dancing about with rage, and shouting)_: Calm! I am
nevaire so perfectly calm in my life! My scullions have gone! Zey vill
not vatch ze pie! Because zey fear ze Brownies!
_Kitchen_: The scullions gone?
_Cooklet_: Then who's to guard it?
_Head Cook_: You--of course--you earthworms!
_Both_: O dear, kind cook, we daren't! _(They grovel with fear.)_
_Head Cook (thunderously)_: Daren't?
_Cooklet_: We're afraid of the dark!
_Kitchen_: And oh, we're afraid of the Brownies!
_Head Cook_: Afraid--afraid--but vat is zere to be afraid? If ze
Brownies come, you have only to sprinkle zem with ze magical red
_Cooklet_: I should faint directly I saw them!
_Kitchen_: O dear, good, handsome, gentle cook, please don't leave us
alone down here to-night!
_Head Cook (almost speechless with rage)_: But vat you vant? Do
you mean to say--you--vant--Me--so gr-r-r-reat--so gr-r-rand--so
mightiful--Me--Chief Head Cook--you vant zat I should keep my eyes
avake all night--ven I have a kitchenmaid and cooklet to suffaire for
me? Is zat vat you mean, heh?
_(They nod sheepishly.)_
_Cooklet_: You're a man!
_Head Cook_: Me--a man! Vat nonsense! I am cook! You have ze
most enormous cheek I've ever hit upon! Bah! _(Hits them with
rolling-pin.)_ Get up--you cr-r-r-rawling caterpillars! _(Knock at the
door; they scream.)_ Vat! now you make a noise, you squeaking beetles!
_Kitchen_: There's some one at the door. _(They stand trembling.)_
_Cooklet_: Oh, it sounds like a man!
_Head Cook (excitedly)_: A man--my scullions--they have retur-r-rned
_Cooklet_: The scullions! Saved! _(Runs to door_ R; _opens it.)_
_Kitchen_: Oh, it's only a beggar! Be off! _(About to shut door.)_
_Prince (outside)_: Nay, mistress, I come in search of work!
_(Enter Prince Fairasday, disguised in ragged tunic. He is red-haired,
and very handsome.)_
_Cooklet_: Work! O sir, here is a scullion for you!
_Head Cook_: Tut, tut, tut! Zat is for me to say, impertinence! You
may come in, young man. _(Prince comes down stage. Cook seats himself
importantly at table.)_ Now! Why have you come so late to ask for
_Prince_: I lost my way in the forest.
_Cook_: Sir! Say, "Sir" ven you spik to me if you do not say "Most
Royal Sir." Vatever you like--but do be respectful.
_Prince (furious)_: Sir!!!!!
_Head Cook_: Zat is better--
_Head Cook_: It does not matter vat you mean so long as you say,
"Sir." Now answer, if you wish for a place here! You do--eh?
_Prince_: Why--why, yes!
_Head Cook:_ Ver' good. Zen vere is your last place?
_Prince:_ I lived in the castle of Prince Fairasday--_(Cook raps on
table, annoyed.)_ Eh?
_Head Cook (shouting furiously):_ Sir!
_Prince:_ Oh--oh, yes, I beg your pardon _(humbly, laughing),_ sir.
_Head Cook:_ Vell, zen, I must know vy you leave.
_Prince:_ Why--sir--my master has fallen in love with the Princess
Fadeaway--and so I thought I would come and see what sort of a
princess she was--for my master in his love-sick fever is sad company
for any one.
_Head Cook:_ But if he is so in lof, vy does not your master come to
woo the Princess?
_Prince:_ Why, sir _(bowing)_, he had heard of too many who had been
denied admittance, and as my master is proud and determined, he made
up his mind he would not risk being turned away like the others.
But, sir, if you will let me stay and work for you, in whatever post,
however humble, I promise you if my answers do not satisfy, my service
_Head Cook:_ You are villing--ah, but zey all say that. H'm--let me
see what you can do. Vash up these. _(Points to dirty plates.)_
_Prince:_ Those! Why, that is scullion's work!
_Head Cook:_ Yes, and there is a scullion's place all ready.
_Prince (indignantly):_ A scullion! I had meant a place with
horses--in the garden--where I might work out-of-doors.
_Kitchen:_ O dear, kind young man, pray, pray do not speak like that.
_Cooklet:_ Oh, we beseech you, take the place! _(Both fall on knees
_Prince_: Why, what's the matter?
_Kitchen_: If there's no scullion here we have to guard the Christmas
pie, and if we guard the pie we d-d-die!
_Prince_: What danger threatens you?
_Both_: The Brownies!
_Prince_: Brownies! What are Brownies?
_Head Cook_: Vy, vat sort of kitchen have you lived in, if you have
never seen ze Brownies?
_Prince_: Oh, I was more like a friend than a page to my master, sir,
and the fact is, I've never been in a kitchen before. Er--what are
_(Brownies cackle with laughter outside.)_
_Head Cook_: Zey are ze evilest leetle beasts in all ze vorld! Venever
you sink you are rid of zem, zere zey are at your elbow. (_Brownies
laugh again_.) Vey steal, zey pinch, zey poke, zey pry, and at night,
ven all ze house is still, zey come out, and if you do not keep your
eyes ver' wide awake zey vill pinch you till you die--zat is, ven you
guard the Christmas pie.
_Prince_: I? Oh, this pleasant little job is meant for me--me? I thank
you, sir? (_Indignantly takes up his cap, preparing to go_.)
_Head Cook_: Not so fast, young man. Zey will come, yes; zey vill
try to steal, yes--but zere is vun sing zat vill send them avay
quick--slick--like zat. It is--RED PEPPER!
_Prince_: Red Pepper! How dare you call me that?
_Head Cook_: Eh?
_Prince_: Who told you I was called Red Pepper?
_Head Cook_: You?
_Prince_: Why, yes. Did you not mean me?
_Head Cook_: Why no. I mean red pepper, from the pepper-pot (_taking
it off shelf_).
_Prince_: Strange, for that's the name by which I'm known among my
people. Why--sir--how can red pepper help me against the Brownies.
DUET (_Cook_ and _Prince_).
(Air: "There Lived a King, as I've Been Told."--_The Gondoliers_.)
_Cook_: Now very hard it is to make
A Brownie his bad ways forsake,
For it's a fact he takes the cake,
If he can't find the candy!
And if you clap your hands and shoo,
He'll only make a face at you;
There's only one thing you can do--
Just keep the pepper handy!
For, as a Brownie hates to sneeze,
Or blow his nose if it should tease,
Or any wholesome acts like these,
He can't abide Red Pepper!
_Prince_: Yet that's the name that's given me,
For, as you all can plainly see,
My hair is red as red can be--
In fact it's fiery scarlet!
And as my hair, my temper is;
So if a page my hair should quiz,
I waste no time, but straight pull his,
And thrash the saucy varlet!
So that is why the name I've got,
And as, when I am waxing hot
I frequently dismiss the lot,
They can't abide Red Pepper!
(_A dance can be arranged here with Prince, Cook, Kitchenmaid and
_Kitchen_: Ah, sir, you will be brave and take the place?
_Cooklet_: Oh, yes, dear, brave, kind handsome man! Say, "Yes," and
calm our fluttering hearts!
_Kitchen_: For if we saw a Brownie we should only scream!
_Cooklet_: And die!
_Prince_: Why, then, if there's no choice save between myself and you
poor maids, why--I must do it. So, sir, I'll guard your pie to-night.
_Cooklet_: O dear, good, kind young man!
_Kitchen_: O noble, bold young man! (_Both kneel gratefully_.)
_Head Cook_: Get up, I say, get up! You kneel to me--not to zis beggar
fellow! And you, sir, get these dishes washed quick, slick, for here
ze Princess Fadeaway is coming with her ladies!
_Prince_: The Princess coming! (_He is agitated_.)
_Head Cook_: Yes. Every Christmas night she comes to pat ze crust wiz
her own fair fingers!
_Prince_: Then I shall see her!
_Head Cook_: Yes--but you need not let zat discompose you--she vill
not notice you. It is only to me she vill spik! Because I am Head
Cook! I am like royalty--only more so. She comes--she comes--let each
be in your place! Now bow, all bow!
(_A graceful march played. Enter Princess Fadeaway, attended by
Greening and Sweeting. The Princess is a sweet-voiced, gentle little
girl. Her ladies are gorgeously attired, and walk and talk in a
disagreeable, affected manner_.)
_Head Cook_: Welcome, Princess; the pie awaits your pleasure!
_Princess_: Good! (_She comes to the table, sees Prince, who starts,
and drops dishes. He stands staring at her; does not pick dishes up_.)
_Princess_: Why--who is this strange gentleman--
_Head Cook (shocked)_: Hush--hush--Your Highness, it is only the new
_Princess (amazed)_: Scullion!
_Greening_: O Princess, how could you take that ragged creature for a
_Sweeting_: I think he looks too fierce for safety. Look how the
jackanapes eyes Your Highness!
_Princess_: He is, indeed, in sorry plight.
_Prince_: Sorry, indeed, if my rags offend Your Highness--
_Greening_: Address yourself to us, fellow! 'Tis not for such as you
to speak to the Princess!
_Prince_: Nay, I am in her service, ladies, and it is her I answer if
she desires to question me!
_Greening_: Insolent! I'd have him put in the stocks.
_Sweeting_: Or whipped at the whipping-post!
_Princess_: Peace, ladies! I would hear him. How is it you are not in
my livery, if you are in my service?
_Prince_: I have but just this moment reached the castle. I have been
traveling in the forest, where the wolves and brambles alike delayed
_Princess_: The wolves? Oh, they have hurt you
_Ladies (trying to stop her)_: Your Highness!
_Princess_: But see--his wrist is bleeding. I am sure it hurts you!
Let me bind it for you (_to Prince_).
_Greening_: Princess! how can you stoop to touch a scullion?
_Sweeting_: Your Highness is strangely forgetting yourself!
_Princess_: Nay, ladies, it is you who forget yourselves!
DUET (_Princess_ and _Prince_).
(Air, "When We Are Married."--_Belle of New York_.)
_Princess_: You should be thinking what you can do
To help the people who live to serve you!
Though I'm a princess, plainly I see
I must act kindly to those who serve me!
_Prince_: Long was my journey, I'm weary and sore,
But such a princess I've ne'er seen before!
Nothing I ask for, save only to be
Here in the castle, my Princess to see!
_Princess_: Though I am a princess, plainly I see,
I must act kindly to those who serve me!
_Prince_: Nothing I ask for, save only to be
Here in the castle, my Princess to see!
(_The Princess binds up his wrist up stage_.)
_Greening (furiously to Head Cook)_: How did you come to engage such a
_Head Cook_: Of a truth, madame, I vould not have done so, madame, but
my scullions have all gone, and I had none to guard ze Christmas pie
_Sweeting_: The Christmas pie!
_Head Cook_: Yes, madame, from ze Brownies. He has consent, now I have
told him of ze pepper-pot.
_Greening_: The pepper-pot! You may go, fellow!
(_The Cook retires up back, annoyed; bullies Kitchenmaid and Cooklet_,
R. _Prince and Princess center, making pie. Prince helps her. Head
_Greening_: Listen, I have an idea! That man is no scullion!
_Sweeting_: No scullion?
_Greening_: I am sure of it! See how he holds himself! How easily he
talks with the Princess! I believe he is some prince who has made his
way into the castle in disguise--
_Sweeting_: Yes, look! His sword peeps out beneath his rags! When did
a scullion ever wear a sword? Oh, what are we to do?
_Greening_: I told you I had an idea. (_To dresser_.) He is to watch
the pie to-night! We'll take the pepper-pot!
_Sweeting_: But they'll see us!
_Greening_: Not if you stand before me!
(_Sweeting stands before Greening, holding out her dress while
Greening reaches down pepper-pot from dresser_.)
_Greening_: Now when the Brownies come, he'll find his sword will be
of little use! See, let us make the Princess come, or she will talk
_Sweeting_: Your Highness--
_Greening_: Your Highness!
_Sweeting_: If Your Highness is quite finished, I pray that Your
Highness will not tarry longer in this odious kitchen! The heat is
_Greening_: And I could never stand the smell of raw pastry!
_Sweeting_: So if Your Highness has quite finished--
_Princess (regretfully)_: Oh, dear, I suppose I must go then! And you
will guard the pie to-night! You are sure you are not afraid!
_Prince_: Afraid! Of course not! If the Brownies come I have the
_Greening (vindictively, aside, and holding the pepper-pot)_: Have
you. (_To Princess_) Princess, I faint for want of sleep!
_Sweeting_: And I expire! (_Yawning_) I droop--I yawn!
_Princess_: Yes, I see you do! As you're so sleepy, I must consider
you and go to bed (_sighing_). But oh, I shall be glad when morning
comes (_to Prince_), and I am sure you're safe again!
(_Graceful march again played. The Princess goes out, followed by
ladies; she turns at door, and looks at Prince and sighs, then exit
followed by Greening and Sweeting. The Prince stands gazing after
_Head Cook_: Come, come, come, young man; 'tis time the lights were
out and other folk in bed besides Her Highness! And if, instead of
staring after her, you'd lend a hand and set the kitchen straight, it
would be more seemly.
(_Cook, Kitchenmaid and Cooklet bustle about, putting cooking things
away from table, leaving only pie_.)
_Prince (dreamily)_: Eh? Did you speak?
_Head Cook_: Shall I tell you what it is? Your head is turned right
around! When royalty speaks to me, do I swell out? No! I know
my place! I take no notice! But you--you are nosing but a
_Prince_: Why, sir, I've been engaged to guard the Christmas pie, and
not to listen to your rating, so the sooner you are off to bed the
better am I pleased!
(_Lights candles and hands them to Cooklet and Kitchenmaid_.)
_Head Cook (furious, spluttering with rage_): Vat--vat--vat--how dare
_Kitchenmaid_: O dear, good, kind young man, how can we leave you?
(_Both tearfully fall on knees_.)
_Cooklet_: Oh, pray, dear, good young man, be careful.
_Kitchen_: Yes, dashing, bold young man--don't--don't be careless!
(_Both howl loudly_).
_Head Cook_: Hussies! Arise! You concern yourselves much too much for
zis young man! I cannot sink why so much notice should be taken of
a scullion! Yes! (_To Prince_.) 'Twere better fit I should have told
your tale unto Her Highness; and if she questioned you, it was for you
to bow and say, "My gr-r-racious master, ze Head Cook, vill spik for
me!" In future--please--r-r-remember! (_Exit, with dignity, followed
by Kitchenmaid and Cooklet. The Brownies cackle with laughter outside.
The stage is now dark, lit only by firelight_.)
_Prince_: And so my lady sleeps above, and I am in the kitchen, her
humblest scullion! Well, at least I have the chance to serve her now,
and guard the dainty pie her dainty fingers touched! _(Brownies
cackle outside_.) What's that? The rats, perhaps, that scutter in the
wainscot. Still, if the Brownies come, I'd best have the pepper-pot.
_If they come_--there's little fear of that! I've never seen a
Brownie, and what I've never seen, I own, I've little faith in.
(_Yawning, sitting in armchair_.) Well, as I'm to stay all night here,
I might as well make myself at ease! (_Yawning again_.) Oh, dear; I'm
very sleepy. (_Stretches himself_.)
(Air: "Little Dolly Daydream.")
_Prince_: Now every one has gone to rest,
To guard the pie I'll do my best;
But all are sleeping,
No one's peeping;
To take a little nap myself were best.
And if by chance the Brownies come,
The pepper-pot will drive them home.
For if I should be sleeping,
I'm sure to hear them creeping,
And then I can wake up before they come.
Little sleeping Princess now I'll dream of thee!
So sweet you be,
And soon you'll see
That I love you, darling, tenderly.
Little sleeping Princess, dream of me!
(_Prince sleeps in armchair. Soft music outside. Enter Brownies,
mysteriously, to the air: "Whist! whist! whist_!")
_Brownies (pianissimo)_: Whist! whist! whist!
Here comes the Brownie man!
To catch the rascal sleeping
Is now our little plan.
We'll tie the nasty scullion fast
And pinch him till he's sore.
The Christmas pie is ours at last;
The waiting time is o'er.
_Frip (softly)_: As we are so full of fun,
Ere the feasting is begun,
For a pleasant little game
We will make him blind and lame.
_Snip_: Pull his hair and poke his eyes--
Anything we can devise.
_Tip_: Kick him till he's black and blue.
_Pip_: Run with pins his fingers through.
_Frip_: And, because he's dared to scoff,
We will pull his toe-nails off!!!
(_They surround Prince. He wakes_.)
_Prince_: Why, what's this? (_Rising_) The Brownies! Where's the
pepper-pot! (_To dresser_) Gone! (_Brownies cackle_.)
_Frip_: Now you cannot sprinkle us.
It's no use to make a fuss!
(_Brownies dance about impishly_.)
_Tip_: Yes! In vain you squeal and cry.
We shall eat the Christmas pie!
_Snip_: Proud you may be, as Mazeppa!
But we only fear RED PEPPER!
DUET (_Prince_ and _Brownies_).
(Air: "There Lived a King."--_The Gondoliers_.)
_Prince_: If that is so, you'd better trot,
For if you stay you'll get it hot!
I swear that I will thrash the lot
For I'm the Prince, Red Pepper!
_Brownies (cowering, afraid)_: Now if we stay, we plainly see
That very soon there'll ructions be!
Observe his hair, how fi-er-y!
Oh, yes! He's a high-stepper!
And, though he cannot make us sneeze,
His sword will tickle and will tease;
I think the pie we'd better seize,
And run from this Red Pepper!
(_Music. Brownies seize pie_.)
_Prince_: Now, put that pie down straight away,
Or very rude things I shall say,
And run you through and through I may
If I become excited!
_Brownies (consulting together by table)_: I really think he means it, too!
Now what on earth are we to do?
We do not care to be run through!
_(Howling pitifully)_We don't like being fighted.
_Prince_: If that is so, I think you'll see
You'd better kneel at once to me,
And humbly beg for clemency!
For so is vice requited!
_Brownies (repeating chorus, kneeling round Prince)_: Oh, yes, dear sir, we plainly see
That we had better kneel to thee,
And humbly beg for clemency!
For so is vice requited!
_Prince (brandishing sword)_: Now, one, two, three, and off you fly,
Or ev'ry one of you shall die!
(_Brownies scream, and are about to run off as enter Princess_ R.
_Prince_: Princess! What brings you here?
_Princess_: They took the pepper-pot away from you! I found it
underneath my ladies' pillow, because they sneezed so much it wakened
me. But, oh, I see you have not needed it!
_Brownies_: Oh, no, no, no! Pray, do not pepper us! (_Brownies turn
and kneel to Princess imploringly_.)
_Prince_: And you came to save me?
_Princess_: Is it not my duty to protect my scullions?
_Prince_: Princess, I am no scullion (_throws off ragged cloak_.) This
was a disguise to help me gain admittance to your castle! It was
the only way in which I could find a means to woo you. But my name's
Prince Fairasday--or, if you like, or as my servants say--Red Pepper.
Am I forgiven?
_Princess_: Oh, yes, indeed you are! (_He embraces her_.) In the
strictest confidence I don't mind telling you I'm longing to be
married and get away from all these girls!
_Prince_: Then we'll be married in the morning!
_Princess_: As soon as you like--Oh (_screams_), my ladies! Look,
(_Enter Sweeting, Greening, Kitchenmaid, Cooklet and Head Cook, in
nightgowns and nightcaps, with candles. Stage light. The candles may
be blown out. Prince and Princess stand in center; Brownies kneel
before them humbly, backs to audience; Head Cook, Kitchenmaid and
Cooklet_, R. _of Princess and Prince. Greening and Sweeting disgusted
FINALE. _Cook, Kitchenmaid, Cooklet, Sweeting, Greening (as they
CHORUS. (Air: "Bogie Man.")Dear, dear, dear!
Now, what is all this fuss?
And what's the Princess doing here?
It really puzzles us!
_Brownies_: She came to save her scullion,
And found a Prince instead.
And we are kneeling down because
He nearly killed us dead!
DUET (_Prince_ and _Princess_). (Air: "When We Are Married.")
_Princess_: Now all is over, you will agree
The moral is plain as a moral can he:
If you act kindly, rewarded you'll be.
Have a prince for your husband, and end happily!
CHORUS. (Air: "There Lived a King.")
_Prince_: And boys must be both brave and strong,
And ever quick to right the wrong;
And now, ere I conclude my song,
I'll speak of pepper quickly!
For pepper stirs and brisks you up,
And makes you more inclined to sup,
And seasons many a loving cup
Which else would be too sickly!
_Brownies_: And though we are not killed quite dead,
With honest shame we hang our head,
And much regret the lives we led,
Before we met Red Pepper!
FULL CHORUS. So now our little play is done,
Before you people homeward run,
We hope to hear from every one
That you have liked Red Pepper!
* * * * *
=A Game of Letters.=
BY ELIZABETH J. ROOK.
(_For fourteen little ones. Each has a large card, his letter printed
on it in bright colors. As he recites, he holds it up in plain view,
but drops it to his side at the close of his recitation. S takes his
place to the Right, the others following in the order here given until
a straight line is formed_.)
We have a game of letters
Which we're going to show to you,
And each will name his letter
As he holds it up to view.
I have an S--a crooked S,
It stands for sugar sweet.
And here's an A for apple pie.
And M for good mince meat.
T stands for turkey, fat and brown,
We have on Christmas day.
And here is S for Santa Claus,
And also for his sleigh.
I stands for icicles and ice,
And R for reindeer gay.
H stands for home and happiness,
And C for Christmas day.
And next in line comes letter Y;
It stands for youth and you;
We couldn't do without it,
It's in the New Year, too.
I have an R, it stands for Right,
And I will hold it high;
And mine I'll place beside it,
For R also have I.
I like the letter E the best,
For what is Earth without it?
And Everything begins with E--
Does anybody doubt it?
I hold in hand a great big M,
It suits me to a T;
M stands for mother, money, too,
And, yes, it stands for me.
(_All now stand close together and hold their letters at the same
height. Then the following lines may be given in concert or spoken by
the leader [S] alone_.)
Now if you read our letters down
From left hand to the right,
You'll find a Christmas greeting
For one and all to-night.
Then beginning at the the left, each child may name his letter--
* * * * *
=Under the Christmas Tree.=
BY ARTHUR GUITERMAN.
TIME: Christmas Eve. CHARACTERS: _Arabella_, a heartless
French doll; _Koko_, a melodramatic Japanese doll;
_Jackski-in-the-Boxovitch,_ the Muscovite Mystery. SCENES: The
children's room. A Christmas tree, properly decorated, L. A
box or hamper with a hinged cover, large enough to contain
_Jack_, center. An entrance, R. _Arabella_ is costumed as
a lady doll should be. _Koko_ is attired in Japanese style,
either old or modern military, and wears a sword. _Jack_
should have abundant black hair and beard and should
be provided with a gilded club. When the curtain rises,
_Arabella_ is discovered seated under the Christmas tree,
eating comfits. The action should be stiff-jointed and
_Arabella (rising)_: Oh, marvelous is Nature! Only see
How bounteous the spreading Christmas tree
That bears upon its branches sugar-plums,
With candy canes and baskets, balls and drums
And trumpets, whistles, candles, pop-corn strings,
And countless kinds of gilt and tinsel things!
Beneath its shade I'll sit me down a while
And read, an idle moment to beguile,
These tender letters penned by suitors three
Who seek my hand--What _can_ they see in me?
(_Seating herself, she takes out three letters, opening one_.)
That sailor doll! He talks of foreign lands
And sings; but I can't bear his tarry hands!
Besides, 'tis rash to trust these roving men.
(_Tearing the letter_.)
So, Bobbie Shafto, go to sea again.
(_She opens another letter_.)
Poor Koko! How that soldier boy does tease!
To tell the truth, I like that Japanese:
But, no! 'twould never do. I can't afford
To wed a doll with nothing but a sword.
(_She sighs, folds the letter, and opens the third_.)
A crest! The Marquis!--Yes, he's dull, alas!
But think!--the Marchioness of Carabas!
(_Rising, she marches majestically_ R. _Koko enters hurriedly. He
throws himself at her feet and seizes her hand_.)
_Koko_: Hail, Arabella. (_She draws away_.) Nay, be not so nice!
Though I said "Hail!" yet do not turn to ice.
That chilly manner fairly makes one freeze.
Behold me down upon my Japan knees!
He bends to thee who never knelt before!
Thou art my all.
_Arabella (aside)_: Oh, sawdust! What a bore!
_Koko_: One word from thee would lift me to the skies.
Pray speak that word!
_Arabella_: I'll try to, sir. Arise!
_Koko_: Nay, mock me not! You know the word I mean.
_Arabella_: Oh, Captain Koko! please don't make a scene.
_Koko_: What! Do you spurn me?
_Arabella (soothingly)_: Now, I wouldn't care
To put it that way. Captain, don't despair!
That German doll would make a model wife.
But, frankly, I don't fancy army life.
_Koko_: Ha! scorned! I know what brings it to this pass.
That stupid Marquis--he of Carabas.
False girl, beware! You'll find, ere years have rolled,
That honest steel is better far than gold.
Farewell! (_Exit tragically_.)
_Arabella_: Good-by! Drop in some night for tea.
(_She stands_ L. _of box, musing_.)
I wonder what an "honest steal" can be!
Perhaps he'll soon return to make it clear.
I hope he does; it's awful lonely here.
(_Jack springs up in the box, holding his gilded club in his right
hand. With his left he seizes Arabella by the hair_.)
_Jack_: Be mine! be mine! I'm handsome, wise and rich;
My name is Jackski-in-the-Boxovitch!
In token of my boundless wealth, behold
This weighty war-club, made of massy gold.
My noble castle's built of wood and glue;
Within its walls is ample room for two;
Then be my bride and all my treasure share!
You know, I always fancied auburn hair.
_Arabella_: Help! help! Oh, save me from this horrid fright!
_Jack_: Now, don't call names; it's dreadful impolite.
_Koko_: What cries are these? What horror meets my view?
Unhand her, caitiff giant!
_Jack_: Not for you!
_Koko_: Then draw! (_Unsheathing his sword_.)
_Jack_: I can't. I'm not an artist, man. But I can fight.
_Koko_:'Tis time then we began.
_Jack_: Come on!
_Koko_: Come on!
_Jack_: Come on! I said it first
_Koko_: False traitor!
_Jack_: Feeble pigmy, do your worst!
(_They fight. Koko strikes the club from Jack's hand and drives him
down into the box_.)
_Koko_: Down! down! In the vile casket whence you sprung
Remain, unwept, unhonored, and unsung!
(_He picks up the golden war-club_.)
_Arabella_: My hero! (_She falls into Koko's arms_.)
_Koko_: Lady, thus the Fates reveal
How conquered gold is won by honest steel.
The tyrant's hoard is ours; and, if you'll deign
To say your Koko's suit is not in vain,
Within this lordly castle, warmed by steam,
We'll live on sugar, strawberries, and cream.
(_Jack pops up with a white handkerchief in one hand and stretches his
arms over the pair in front of his box_.)
_Jack_: Bless you, my children!
_Koko (hands on sword)_: What, again!
_Jack (waving the handkerchief)_: Hold, hold!
A truce to war! I would a tale unfold;
So, never let your angry passions rise.
In me you see a fairy in disguise--
A kindly fairy. Thus, with open hands,
I give to valiant Koko wealth and lands.
Fair Arabella! Nature, Fortune, Art,
Have made her perfect--lacking but a heart;
So let her take, that want to cure, I say,
These pleasant tablets, three times every day.
(_He gives her a handful of heart-shaped sugar-candies which she
obediently begins to eat_.)Now for your futures: Koko shall belong
To Master Lee; and, being very strong,
He won't be broken for a month or so.
But Arabella,--her I do bestow
On Baby Maud. Them shall you serve by day;
But oft at night, when toys are tucked away,
When all the house is hushed and no one sees,
We'll here enact such pleasant plays as these
Beneath the Christmas tree.
You've held the floor
_Arabella_ and _Koko (shutting down the cover)_:
For half an hour, Jack. Don't be a bore!