The Man Called Bacchus

Playwright/Director: Tani Masazumi

Julian Grandgeorges (former commanding officer of the Imperial Guard) – Mirai Yuuki
Anne d'Autriche (Queen of France) – Konno Mahiru
Michel Valor (troubadour) – Ranka Rea
Cardinal Mazarin (France's chief minister) – Tatsuki You
Manderen (leader of a band of thieves) – Otozuki Kei
Louis II, Duke of Enghien (France's commander-in-chief) – Amase Izuru
Duke of Orléans – Tachibana Riya
Duchess of Orléans – Asaka Serena
Lazlo (the Marquis Flovel's manservant) – Aomi Taku
Charlotte (Flovel's eldest daughter. Lazlo's lover) – Aida Megu
Paulette (Michel's lover) – Mio Urara
Athos (musketeer) – Sugata Kou
Aramis (musketeer) – Machika Meguru
Porthos (musketeer) – Minaho Karin
Duke of Orléans (Louis XIII's younger brother) – Tachibana Riya
Müller (captain of the German army) – Rei Yuuki
Blanchet (Julian's manservant) – Saezuki Akira
Adelle (Manderen's lover) – Kasumi Fuuka
Marquis Flovel (master of Riquewhir) – Kazami Yoshiki
Marchioness Flovel – Ai Youko
Nana (Flovels' maid) – Asaki Yumemi

Scene 1 – The French Imperial Guard

A giant flag with the seal of the Bourbon kings, the fleur-de-lis, hangs in a prominent place. Beneath the flag, the valorous imperial guard sing to the imperial family.

“We Shall Not Die Under the Flag”

Imperial Guard:
We are sworn to the king with one word: Loyalty
We, the imperial guard!
The very spirit of celebrated swordsmen
We shall not die under the flag
We shall not die under the flag

From their midst emerges Count Julian Grandgeorges, commanding officer of the imperial guard.

Julian: (In French) Battle formation!

Julian draws his sword, and all of the imperial guard follows him.

Julian: (In French) Present!

Julian presents, the guard follows.

Julian: (In French) Advance!

Julian advances, the guard follows.

Julian dances, and the guard dances around him. Julian sinks down in the lift, and the guard dances in his place, holding the fleur-de-lis flag. They all pledge their loyalty to the flag, and the scene changes.


Scene 2 – The Wandering Chansonnier

Julian Grandgeorges comes up the lift in the guise of a wandering chansonnier, and crosses the ginkyo singing.

“The Wandering Chansonnier”

Julian:
A chansonnier without a sword
Slaying evil with voice alone
Words welling out like a spring
Sarcasm mingled with humor
Wiles, jealousy
Plotting rebellion, toadying
If you want words that poke fun at the nobility
It's no inconvenience, there are more than enough
Born from the mouth of a chansonnier

In the agony of love, in the pain of love
Love is mysterious, love is a riddle
In the madness of love, in the rejection of love
Pray to love, love is a riddle
I’ll unravel entangled love
And entice you to cushions of sweet delights

Lalala, lalala
Lalala, lalala

A chansonnier goes from journey to journey
Living freely on the road
The soul of the wandering god Bacchus
Wine in one hand, irony in the other
Getting rich quick, marrying money
Don’t count your chickens before they’re hatched

Along with an avarice that doesn’t recognize your own social position
I shall give you a proverb, some candid advice
The deceptive eloquence of a chansonnier
Impolite, discourteous, disgraceful insult
The kind-hearted chansonnier
Frankness alone brings a profit….

As Julian reaches the other end of the ginkyo, the scene changes.


Scene 3A – Queen Anne d'Autriche

1643, Paris, France. An inner garden of the Palais-Royal. There is a throne, and the flag with the fleur-de-lis hangs back in an alcove. Braziers line the garden so that it is bright as day.

With the death of Louis XIII on May 15th, Anne d’Autriche rules as regent for her infant son Louis XIV, with Cardinal Mazarin as her adviser, and bows to the wills of the influential people in the Palais-Royal.

The noblemen and their ladies dance. They dance earnestly in the Spanish style, as if to impress this queen who came from the Spanish Habsburgs to marry into the French royal family.

Some members of the household sing a greeting to the queen’s arrival at the palais.

“The Queen Arrives”

Ceremony Chamberlains:
A brilliance which even the sun cannot surpass
A lovely visage, like a goddess
That is the queen
Anne d’Autriche

Queen Anne arrives brilliantly with Cardinal Mazarin and many courtiers.

Everyone bows deeply.

Queen Anne: Everyone, tonight’s banquet is a joyful one. With the death of the late King Louis XIII, I Anne d’Autriche became regent for my infant son Louis XIV. I have no more joyful news than that which I would tell you today…. Cardinal Mazarin, tell everyone this joyful news.

Mazarin: Yes, Your Majesty. ….. The queen’s good spirits which have made her so lovely are due to news from the north of France. One of the Habsburg fortifications, whose name is well-known–Rocroi, which has withstood repeated attacks from our army–has been overthrown by our young Duke of Enghien.

Nobles: Huzzah for France!

Nobles: Huzzah for the Queen!

Queen Anne: Now, let this brave young man approach.

The ceremony chamberlains sing for the triumphal return of the young Duke of Enghien from the northern battlefield of Rocroi.

Ceremony Chamberlains:
The conquering hero comes
With triumph and loyalty
The young god of war, the Duke of Enghien

The Duke of Enghien and the imperial guard enter with a flourish and fall into line before the queen.

Queen Anne: Duke, you have done well. How skillfully you overthrew the battlements of Rocroi which no one could overcome. I thank you for King Louis XIV.

Enghien: Let us turn these words of thanks into praise for the soldiers who risked their lives on the battlefield.

Queen Anne: (laughing) Now, fire the guns in salute, that the people of Paris might learn of this joy.

A cannonade rings out.

Queen Anne: Your Highness, what is wrong? Your complexion has gone strange……

Enghien: It cannot be—

Mazarin: Of course the Duke of Orléans also lead assaults on Rocroi. Seven times you made an onslaught, seven times you were made to take to your heels….

Orléans: Mazarin! Are you trying to slander me?

Duchess of Orléans: Yes. Our lineage is descended from the Bourbon kings. You, only a chief minister born in Italy, are out of line!

Mazarin: These are not words of slander against the Duke of Orléans, younger brother of the departed King Louis XIII. Though Your Royal Highness is a highly respected war hero, you did not overthrow Rocroi, and I am merely extolling the deeds of arms of the Duke of Enghien, who did overthrow it.

Orléans: …….

Enghien: Your Eminence, when both sides are struggling for supremacy, victory or defeat on the battlefield is a matter of the luck of timing, if the Duke of Orléans had been the one to attack that time, the battlements would have certainly been overthrown.

Queen Anne: No haughtiness in victory…. My Lord Duke, so long as you are here, France is invincible. …. Next we will defeat the German Habsburgs, and the strength of France will be known throughout Europe.

Enghien: As you command. Though this body should fall to dust, I shall do my utmost to fulfill the commands of my queen.

Queen Anne: Now then, everyone. Let us roll back the curtain of darkness with braziers and the glory of France. Now, let the joyful banquet continue!

Accompanied by gay music, a masked chansonnier enters, dressed as Bacchus.

It is the former commander of the Imperial Guard….. Julian. He enters and sings.

“What Is War?”

Julian:
I didn’t understand the reason for the tears
“Mama, why are you crying?”
The letter said that father had died in battle
While Paris was drunk on victory

“Mama, it hurts!”
She held me so tightly
Because she needed a prop

I didn’t understand the reason for war
“I shall fight too! Do glorious things,
And make my mother happy.”
A glorious departure for the front in a new war
I was so excited my hands shook

“Why do you hit me?”
I only said I wanted to make you happy—
My mother’s tightly closed lips were
Faintly twisted and blotted with blood

Mazarin realizes what Julian is singing.

Mazarin: Enough! You would sing this sort of song at a victory celebration? It is not in keeping with the occasion.

Julian: (With a great laugh) I’m pleased to say that we disagree on this. The merit of we chansonniers is that we sing about the reality of the people, without bowing to the occasion. Thus when you send for a chansonnier, it is quite absurd to say that we should keep with the occasion.

Mazarin: What!

Julian: Having said that, it would be hard on me to incur the wrath of the chief minister who has collected so much of the queen’s favor. I shall change my merit, keep to the occasion, and change the song.

“Paris’s Most Bustling District”

Julian:
“Paris’s most populous place,
That would be the Bastille prison”
If you lament of hunger—
the crime is treason!
If you speak the truth— the crime is treason!
If you simply walk— the crime is treason!

Mazarin: Seize this man!

The guard surrounds Julian.

Julian: As you see, I speak thus, and it is treason. ….. Governance is to rule people with benevolence. But in France, the people are ruled with fear.

Mazarin: No matter, kill him.

The guard moves to cut Julian down. Julian fights them. Through his maneuvers, Julian moves around behind the queen, holding her prisoner with drawn sword.

Enghien: Move back, move back!

With the queen held at swordspoint, no one can move.

Queen Anne: (laughing) Julian. Now then, take off that mask and show me your dear face.

Julian takes off the mask.

Everyone is shocked by the appearance of the former commander of the Imperial Guard.

?: Julian!

?: Commander!

?: Count Grandgeorges!

Julian: Your Majesty, forgive me all my offenses.

Julian bows deeply.

Queen Anne: Everyone, Count Grandgeorges, former commander of the Imperial Guard who won fame among the swordsmen of France, has returned to the palace. Now then, put up your swords, and return once more to the joys of dancing….. Julian, you can partner me, can you not?

Julian: If the queen commands….

The music commences, and with Julian and the queen in the lead, the dancers return to their circle.

Julian: Even the Bacchus disguise was useless against you, Your Majesty?

Queen Anne: When I came from Spain at fourteen as a bride, you were the first one to come meet me…. And I could not mistake someone who guarded me for so long.

Queen Anne: Julian, when you had your sword at my throat, I wanted you to steal me away….

Forgetting her position and the place for a moment, she clings to Julian.

Julian: My Queen!

Queen Anne: When the king died and I assumed the government, that day was the last. You disappeared from my sight; when I needed your help the most, you were gone….. And then when I meet you by chance again, a wandering chansonnier…..

Julian: Your Majesty, the song of that chansonnier is the lamenting voices of the people; won’t you listen to the voices of the people?

Queen Anne: … The voices of the people….?

Julian: France is in pain now……. The war with the Habsburgs has continued for so many years, the land is in ruin and the people are gasping for breath beneath starvation and heavy taxation. Any more war will simply be an invitation to the populace to revolt.

The queen stops dancing.

Queen Anne: (Returned to herself) At this time when France has achieved a great victory, what would the people say if I ended the war? They would certainly attack me for seeking conciliation because I thought more of the safety of my parents' home than of victory for the France I was married to. I, who came as a bride from Spain, have no option to keep the faith of the people of France other than to continue the war and destroy the Habsburgs.

Julian: More than voices of censure, please allow yourself to hear the cries of your voiceless people!

Mazarin: Count Grandgeorges, although you may be the former commander of the Imperial Guard, you are now simply a chansonnier living off the charity of many. Remember your station when interposing on the government.

At that moment, there are voices raised in uproar, and Lazlo (a manservant from Alsace) enters followed by the guard.

Mazarin: What is this?

Lazlo: Your Majesty, Your Majesty. Please protect Alsace, please! Your Majesty, Alsace…!

The guard restrain Lazlo.

Lazlo: Your Majesty, please!

Mazarin: Silence! Stealing into the Palais-Royal is an inexcusable crime. Immediate beheading.

Charlotte, who has been brought from Riquewihr in Alsace as a hostage, comes running out of the dancing circle.

Charlotte: Your Majesty, mercy, please!

Lazlo: Lady Charlotte!

Charlotte: Your Majesty, this man is not dangerous. He’s a servant in our household…… He would not have done something so insolent without extreme cause. Please, please listen to what he has to say.

Queen Anne: Who is this girl?

Mazarin: A hostage from the land of Alsace, which falls on our border with Germany.

Queen Anne: Alsace…. I will listen, you may speak.

Lazlo: Your Majesty, we received word that the Imperial Habsburg army is headed for Alsace, and soldiers have been surfacing. Our Marquis Flovel intends to attack, but ours is a small, powerless land, and so I come to beg French troops be dispatched.

Queen Anne: I cannot allow Alsace, which we finally wrested away, to be overrun under my very nose…… My Lord Duke, you have just returned and must be tired, but I must ask you to deploy once more.

Enghien: Your will.

Mazarin: Please wait, Your Majesty. Alsace was once a country which paid tribute to the Habsburgs. They have pledged their loyalty to France now, but would they really intend to attack the Habsburgs?

Lazlo: Forgive me, but now Lady Charlotte has been sent as a hostage, as proof of our loyalty.

Mazarin: Loyalty….. The marquis’s household has another young lady, does it not? Where is that young lady now?

Lazlo: Well….

Mazarin: According to the report of a local supervisor, she was sent as a hostage to the Habsburgs. They’ve pledged loyalty to both armies, with the motive of surviving. If they want the aid of France, let them fight one battle against the Habsburgs, and prove their loyalty in spilled blood….. Your majesty, let the Duke of Enghien recover from his exhaustion, and dispatch him when his war potential is in good order. How does this sound?

Julian: Your Majesty!

Queen Anne: As Mazarin says, that is the best measure.

Guard 1: Your Eminence, what shall we do with this man?

Mazarin: Put him in the Bastille.

Guard 1: Now, come along.

Lazlo: Lady Charlotte!

Charlotte: Lazlo!

The guard carry off Lazlo, and when Charlotte follows after, they carry her off as well.

Mazarin: Your Majesty, may I have the honor of this dance?

Conscious of Julian, Queen Anne begins to dance with Mazarin. Julian remains alone amid the dancers, and the scene changes.


Scene 3B – The Eloquent Valet Blanchet

Julian is left alone on stage, and his valet Blanchet (who has been with him since he was commander of the Imperial Guards) joins him.

Blanchet: Master, stop please.

Julian: Blanchet, I’m not doing anything yet.

The two walk across the ginkyo as they speak.

Blanchet: It’s too late after you’ve already done it, so I’m telling you now….. When you have your sights set on something, master, you’re asking for trouble. When you left the Imperial Guards, and when you gave up the wealth of your title……. Back then I received all of my wages…… And then now, a wandering chansonnier. When you have no income, you rely on my savings….. Master, you are going to pay back the 500 francs you borrowed from me?

Julian: All right, mayfly.

Blanchet: Then, let’s go back. There’s only danger waiting ahead.

Julian: Blanchet. I don’t enjoy traveling down dangerous paths. Danger comes to me on the paths I travel. So even if I go back, I can’t run away from the danger. That’s why I go forward.

Blanchet: Master, you’ve reached a respectable, mature age, but this hair-splitting—

Julian: Blanchet! Hair-splitting? You can’t split hairs!

Blanchet: Master, that’s splitting hairs.

The two return to the main stage, and the next scene.


Scene 4 – The Elderly Three Musketeers

Below the Pont Neuf. A poor stage made up of only a curtain is set up, and several actresses are singing sadly while picking up the small theater space. Julian and Blanchet enter.

Julian: Paris's most popular Pont Neuf Theater is usually overflowing with an audience, yet... (to the girls) Hey there, what's happened? Don't fret, I am a fellow artist, a chansonnier.

Margot: The cardinal's guard raided us and accused the theater of leading the populace into rebellion.

Marquise: The crowd went wild when I lifted my skirt a little to show them my lovely legs. That was a treasonous crime.

Ketty: They barricaded the theater and sent all the men in our company to the Bastille.

Paulette begins to sing.

Julian: Who is that girl?

Margot: A new member. Her lover is a troubador. Mazarin hates him. That's all I need to say for you to understand, eh?

Marquise: Men are selfish. Doing what they like and getting put into jail, that's an honor. But all women can do is wait for them.

Ketty: The area around the Bastille is littered with women waiting for men who have been imprisoned there!

Julian: Then those three old men are...?

Margot: Ah, those three.... They were injured but they're as well as could be expected.

Julian: Thank goodness. I've known them for years. Could you call them for me?

Margot: (laughing) No need to call them, all you have to do is this and they'll come running. …. Help, the cardinal's guard have come to take us away!

Ketty: Help!

At the sound of the shouts, three older men who were once musketeers (Athos, Aramis, Porthos) come running, flailing their swords.

Athos: (His head is wrapped in a bandage) Hey, stop that racket! I, Athos, former musketeer, will not forgive those that come trespassing here without good manners.

Aramis: (His arm is in a sling) Hey! God says love thy enemies, therefor I shall pierce you with love. With this golden sword, I, Aramis, former musketeer-!

Porthos: (Dragging one of his legs behind him) Ooh, I am not like those other two, I shall mince you into pieces! I, Porthos, former musketeer-!

Musketeers: Soldiers all for one and one for all.... If you would face musketeers, come against us!

They try to make a brave force, but their wounds get the better of them. Julian laughs.

Julian: As valiant as ever!

Musketeers: Commander!

They surround Julian.

Julian: I heard you were wounded by the cardinal's guard.

Athos: What are you saying? They were the ones injured.

Aramis: They really came at us, but they were such children that I went a little easy on them.

Porthos: We have aged, and now feel what might be called tenderer emotions.

Julian: You are reliable companions. …. Speaking of, I have an earnest request to make of you.

Athos: How reserved, commander. Don't request, command us! For you, commander, we would do anything.

Aramis: Indeed, for the commander, be it going into fire or into water....

Porthos: We would accompany you into the depths of hell.

Julian: I am pleased, musketeers. Then I shall be frank.... In truth, there is a man I wish to rescue from the Bastille.

Musketeers: The Bastille!

Blanchet is so startled that his cigarette goes flying. The three musketeers become completely flustered when they hear the Bastille named.

Julian: What, does hearing of the Bastille make you timid?

Athos: I-It is unthinkable that I be timid.... But although it is easy to enter, leaving is....

Julian: Athos, even though it is my command you balk? …. Aramis, you said even into fire or into water.... Porthos, you said you would accompany me to the very depths of hell.

Musketeers: But, the Bastille is-

Julian: We musketeers, full of glory!

Musketeers: In life and in death, all for one, one for all.

Julian: I have come to believe that no matter when, you would always rescue a comrade. But perhaps now it is no more than an old tale.... Well, there's nothing for it. You'll send me on my way alone?

Musketeers: Commander.

Julian: Although I joined the guard so recently, I had often heard of the legendary courage of the three musketeers. My dream was to become like them.

Musketeers: Commander........

Julian: That's right, the tale of how you rescued Henri IV from the Bastille where he had been imprisoned by the rebel army was interesting........ Wasn't it, Athos?

Athos: It was an underground passage. Below the Bastille there is a maze of passages, and it was by creeping in through them that we were able to rescue the king.

Aramis: That's right.... That was the best moment of my life..... Those sweet days when we were given such words of praise by the peerless guard, and were so admired by the noble ladies...... The tempestuous love with the Duchess Grange. My breast trembled so for my beloved Simone. Jacqueline, such cruel things happened to you, youth toyed with your affections.

Porthos: Aramis, is this the time to be overcome by memories!? But, Athos, the underground is a maze; once you lose your way you won't return alive. Do you remember the way?

Athos: I have absolutely no confidence.

Julian: Even without confidence you have the ability, and that is enough for musketeers to move forward with.

Musketeers: But......

Knowing them so well, Julian caries them away with him.

Julian: We musketeers, full of glory!

Musketeers: In life and in death, all for one, one for all!

Julian: All right, move out!

Musketeers: Yessir!

The four exit.


Scene 5 – Good Men in Jail

The setting is the inner Bastille, where men chained at their ankles and wrists dance forlornly while guards look on. Once their dance is finished, the guards lock them into individual cells.

The three old musketeers enter in new royal guard uniforms, with Julian in their midst dressed as a priest.

Athos: We did it! We made it at last! I've regained the memories from forty years ago!

Julian: Athos, please keep quiet. To come this far and then be captured would be terrible.

Athos: They've returned, my memories of forty years ago. How could I not be excited? Oh, thanks be to God!

Aramis: Don't push! Porthos, don't push!

Porthos: Hurry! Aramis, hurry!

Julian: Please, keep quiet! …. Your bodies have grown feeble, but your voices have gotten louder.... We musketeers, full of glory.

Musketeers: In life and in death, all for one, one for all.

Julian: … All right, commence operations. Go!

The four enter and draw close to the jailors.

Jailor 1: Who are you?

Julian: Servus sit clericorum sermo.

Jailor 1: Huh?

Julian: Prorsus admirabile.

Athos: This man is here at the request of Cardinal Mazarin, and has come from Italy where he is a renowned priest. He is here to receive the confession of one prisoner Lazlo, who was arrested at the Palais-Royal.

Jailor 2: If that's the criminal you want he's here in this cell block, but we didn't receive any such orders.

Athos: Our words are the cardinal's orders.

Jailor 2: But... if there's no decree-

At that moment Aramis and Porthos jump the two jailors and knock them out.

Julian: O Lord, forgive them their violence. …. Now then, Athos, the keys!

Athos takes the keys from the jailors and begins unlocking the cells.

Julian: Messenger from Alsace, come out quickly!

At those words, Lazlo comes out timidly.

Athos: Now then, escape.

Lazlo: Who are you...?

Julian casts aside his priest's robes.

Julian: There's no time for explanations now, but I'll say that we're not enemies. Now, this is a jailbreak. Athos, can you return by the way we came?

Athos: Hmmmm. …. If my memory doesn't fail me, I believe when we escaped we took a different path.....

Julian: Please, remember quickly!

From the same cell as Lazlo, the voice of the troubadour Michel Valor is heard.

Michel: The door is left open.... So, may we all also leave?

Julian: You are?

Michel exits the cell.

Michel: Michel Valor, traveling troubadour. ….. Words of beauty well up as from an inexhaustible fountain, and sometimes they bring courage to men timid in love, and sometimes they bring gentle comfort to ladies wounded by love...... But for others I am a simple chattering fellow.

Julian: I wonder if you could tell us the charges against you?

Michel: Crimes committed by traveling troubadours don't amount to much. We borrow the fronts of other people's houses without permission and one night even use it as a bedroom, but in Paris it is a crime of treason to make others listen to punning poetry. And this is the result! .... After all, to stay silent is to obey the authorities. The rightness of their commands. However, to not go along with them is the natural way of things, self-determination....... Karma I was born with?—A life of treason for being unable to keep quiet in the face of political power and injustice. My criminal record is a medal of honor for a troubadour: a heretic, a swindler, a traitor—more crimes than you can count. However, I am an entertainer who has never made his audience yawn. Shall I give you a performance in lieu of an introduction?

Julian: You certainly are talkative, but you don't seem to be a bad sort. All right.

Michel: My thanks and joy.

Julian: However, it would be unfair to rescue only you. We'll allow everyone here to escape.

Musketeer: Commander, Paris will be covered with criminals!

Michel: Don't fuss, if you want to speak of criminals, there are 50,000 in the Palais-Royal.

Julian hands Michel the keys.

Julian: Now then, hurry!

Michel: Are there any here who bear Mazarin ill-will? If so, revile him and come out of the prison!

The prisoners denounce Mazarin and Michel opens their cells to free them.

Athos: I've remembered the way out! Oh, thanks be to God! He has returned my memories of forty years ago.

Aramis: Forty years ago..... Ahh, those days of my youth.....

Porthos: Forty years ago.... What was I doing then, I wonder?

Julian: Now, Athos, lead the way!

Athos: This way.

Athos leads them from the Bastille.


Scene 6 – The Traveling Troupe / Bacchus' Players

Julian and the three musketeers arrive at the theater under Pon Neuf, leading the escaped prisoners, all making a great deal of noise. When the women hear the loud voices they come out, and run to hug the men from their troupe.

Blanchet catches sight of Julian.

Blanchet: Oh, thanks be to God, my five-hundred francs have returned.

Paulette catches sight of Michel and runs to him, but she is too overcome to embrace him or say a word, and simply cries. The depth of their affections is clear to anyone watching them gaze at each other wordlessly.

Julian: Michel, I hate to interrupt such a joyful reunion, but now is not the time to take our ease.

Michel: Of course you're right; they'll be following us soon.

Julian: One can never be too careful of Mazarin; he will be smoking us out by any means. With a charge of treason, if you are captured again you'll certainly be sent to the gallows.

Prisoner 1: So what would you have those of us that you broke out of prison do?

Prisoner 2: That's right!

Julian leads Lazlo forward.

Julian: He is from Alsace. Everyone knows the tragedy of Alsace. Alcase has been made the battle ground between France and the Habsburgs for twenty-five years—the fields have been trampled, the towns burned..... When the French win they must fight with the French army against Germany, when the Germans win they must fight against the French..... They came to France seeking aid. Mazarin refused. If you think yourself Mazarin's enemy, won't you work against Mazarin to aid Alsace's wretched condition?

Prisoner 2: You're telling us to start a war against France? Are you insane?

Julian: Not to go to war, to prevent war.

Prisoner 1: It's not possible!

Prisoners: That's right!

Michel: It sounds interesting....... If you're rebels, then act like rebels, instead of living hidden and scuttling in the belly of Paris, you can rampage openly in a new world. We have a debt of gratitude for our release. ….. Somehow this declaration of preventing war seems a means to that end.

Manderen, leader of a band of Parisian thieves, steps forward from the shadows.

Manderen: Sorry, but I have to refuse. ….. It's not that I've forgotten my debt to my rescuers, nor that I believe Alsace's condition to be someone else's problem..... But I'm not a political criminal like the rest of you. I'm just the leader of a band of thieves. I might be honorable enough not to steal from the poor, but other than that I have no principles. …. Still, someone must pull together those who are driven to stealing because of starvation, or they'll end up struggling amongst themselves. I want to live, for the sake of my companions who have no better way to live, and for the sake of the woman who is waiting for me to return home.

Adelle: I heard what you just said!

Manderen: Adelle.

Adelle: What is this, spouting such self-important words while saying you want to go home to the woman who is waiting for you. You must really love me then!

Gaspar: I heard! I heard! I quite clearly heard the boss's epiphany of love!

Manderen: You idiot!

Julian: You are no common thief. What is your name?

Manderen: Manderen. I'm not as famous as you, but I'm a fairly well-known petty thief..... A wandering chansonnier—really the former commander of the Imperial Guard, Count Julian Grandgeorges.

At the name, everyone is shocked.

Manderen: Don't worry. He hates the rotten royal palace, and left it; he's Mazarin's enemy.

Julian: You are well informed.

Manderen: I have sharp ears. …. Count, I am a man who doesn't forget his debts. If you ever have need of me, call.

Julian: I don't think the time when we'll need your aid is far off.

Manderen: Until that time, we'll both take care. …. You lot, sneaking about doesn't suit me. There's been a general mobilization of the soldiers to pursue the fugitives.

Adelle: Meaning a lack of guards at the mansions.

Manderen: Now then, thieves of ancient and honorable origin, away!

Manderen runs off.

Julian: Now then, Lazlo. I'm depending on you to show us the way to Alsace.

Lazlo: …. But, my lady is a hostage.....

Julian: If you bring her back to Alsace now, you will make France your implacable enemy. For the sake of preventing a war, you can't afford to make any enemies....

Lazlo: But, how are you intending to—

Julian: Don't worry, I will get your lady out. Michel, so that we're not suspected along the way, what do you say to the strategy of disguising ourselves as a traveling troupe?

Michel: If I can get the starring role in the troupe-!

Julian: Well then, I shall take on the role of the buffoon!

Amidst laughter, everyone begins to sing.

“A Traveling Troupe”

Julian:
A traveling troupe moving from one journey to the next
In this place: a performance, greetings

Michel:
Tragedy, comedy, classics
A treasure box of everything

All:
Old and young, men and women
We'd like everyone to come and see
A traveling troupe moving from one journey to the next
Applause and acclaim makes us glad
But money makes us gladdest
Rude and crude, insults and shame
If we offend, we beg pardon
We kindhearted traveling performers
Honesty is our only merit

The troupe formed, the scene ends.


Scene 7 – The Tragedy of Riquewihr Principality

The setting is the town square of lovely village of Riquewihr, which is called the Pearl of Alsace.

In contrast to the lovely town, it is empty of people and seems almost to be sleeping.

Lazlo comes racing in.

Lazlo: My lord, I have returned! …. Everyone, come out! … It is I, Lazlo! ….. I've returned from Paris. My lord!

The people come out of their homes cautiously, one by one.

Last to emerge are the Marquis and Marchioness Flovel and their two sons, Günter and Martin.

Marquis: Lazlo?

Lazlo: My lord.

Marquis: How was the reply of France? Good news? Is it good news?

Marchioness: Lazlo, please tell us. We have sent both of our daughters out as hostages, there is no information that could surprise us.

Lazlo: My lord and lady..... France refused to send reinforcements.

Marquis: Lazlo, did you relay our message clearly? Did you relay clearly that we have sent Charlotte to them as a pledge of our loyalty?

Lazlo: Cardinal Mazarin had a report from the Alsace district supervisor; he knew everything. Even that Lady Margitta was sent as a hostage to the Habsburgs.

Marquis: What!

Lazlo: The scheme to pledge loyalty to both sides so that we have a chance of survival. He said if we want the aid of France, we should fight against the Habsburgs and pledge our loyalty in spilt blood.

Marquis: It is over, then.

He begins to weep.

The people also collapse.

Marquis: Both France and the Habsburgs have abandoned us, and there is nothing more we can do.

Lazlo: Then the Habsburgs also....

Marquis: Told us to prove our loyalty by fighting against France.

Marchioness: Our small country in Alsace has made it thus far without being subjected to the harsh rule of a larger nation because we were border land between distant nations. But now being such a border land has repeatedly brought us the ill-luck of becoming a battle ground. …. And to survive we have sent our sweet children away to both sides as hostages. …. Then, if there is to be no relief, there is only one way open to us. Everyone here must separate and ally themselves with one side or the other.

Marquis: What are you saying!

Marchioness: Günter, Martin, my beloved sons. Come here. …. Günter, you will volunteer for the French army.

Günter: Mother!

Marchioness: Martin, you will go to the Habsburg army.

Martin: But-

Marchioness: And you will both fight hard to advance through the enemy. You will use all your power to defeat your enemy.

Günter: But if the enemy to defeat is Martin-

Martin: Are you telling me to fight my own brother?

Marchioness: Yes. You shall prove your loyalty by spilling the blood of your kin in battle. And when the winner remains, he shall request the continuation of Riquewihr as his reward for his deeds on the battlefield. …. If you are unable to make the final blow against your kin which would grant you this reward, then even if you are on the winning side, this land will go to a larger.... There is no other way for Riquewihr to survive.

Marquis: I will not listen any longer.

Marchioness: Dear, please listen. We also must go to opposite sides.

Marquis: No! To be separated from you who have been my wife for so many years....

Marchioness: There is no other means of survival for this land.

Lazlo: My lady, there is another means.

Marquis & Marchioness: Lazlo!

Lazlo: The former commander of the French Imperial Guard and his companions have heard of Riquewihr's circumstances, and have hastened here. I am certain that they can save us.

Marquis: Lazlo, is this true?

Lazlo: Yes.

Marquis: (to his wife) Then, we can continue to live together without separating! Günter, Martin, you shall remain as brothers....! Now then, Lazlo, where are these people?

Lazlo: There!

The traveling troupe emerges with Julian and Michel at their head, and the three old musketeers being pulled in a cart.

“A Traveling Troupe”

Troupe:
A traveling troupe moving from one journey to the next
In this place: a performance, greetings
Tragedy, comedy, classics
A treasure box of everything

Old and young, men and women
We'd like everyone to come and see
A traveling troupe moving from one journey to the next
Applause and acclaim makes us glad
But money makes us gladdest

Lazlo: My lord, this is the former commander of the Imperial Guard, Count Julian Grandgeorges.

Julian: I threw away my title of count long ago, now I am a wandering performer.

Julian begins to dance, and seeing him in the costume of a buffoon, the townspeople are dismayed. The three musketeers climb down from the cart.

Athos: People of Riquewihr, be at ease! We former elite Imperial Guardsmen have come, so there is no need to worry. …. After such a long journey my back is—uhh!

Aramis: Athos, if your back is paining you, take this medicine. …. Rub it in frequently and prevent it from getting chill. …. When the mass of enemies descends, we shall drive them away with these hands! ...Ah-!

Porthos: Aramis, is your rheumatism quite terrible?

Aramis: It really hurts about here.

Porthos: I see, take care. ….. Never fear! The time has come for we former Imperial Guardsmen to act! Ack!

Marquis: A clown of a former commander leading chronically diseased soldiers.... Günter, Martin, you have only tonight for your sorrowful farewells.

The Marquis runs away, weeping.

Marchioness: Lazlo, you took great pains to come here. Please let me offer our wine storehouse as a place to rest.

Porthos: Wine storehouse, you say? Perchance an opportunity to drink as much as we can? Well then, I'm to bed, where I'll drink the night away!

Marchioness: Unfortunately, there is no wine. The French army took it all for taxes. And food as well.... There's just enough left to keep us alive.

Unable to keep her composure, the marchioness also leaves.

Lazlo: My apologies, this is the state of Riquewihr. ….. Now then, follow me.

Everyone follows Lazlo, except Julian and Michel. The two remove their costumes.

Michel: It seems we overdid our temporary disguises to hide from the world. ….. But, it's understandable for everyone to be disappointed. A former commander of the imperial guard acting like a clown, three old musketeers, and a bunch of unarmed performers. It would be absurd to get your hopes up.

Julian: That is certainly true.

Michel: You say without a hint of worry. …. I put on the air of a rebel, but am just a powerless troubadour after all. But you, you are marshaling these small bits of power and planning to stop a war? Turning a small power into a large one!…. So, tell me please, what is your surprising strategy?

Julian: Michel, you are a poet. Look at this lovely row of houses and what do you see?

Michel: It is as if... they are like a single pearl amidst the vineyards. ….In the moment when I awoke from a deep dream, wrapped in a rich fragrance, and the grapes had turned to wine much like a girl who has learned of love turns into a woman...... A lovely town suitable to this kind of poetry.

Julian: But if you were a carpenter, this is what you would think: ….That window has become crooked, that pillar is rotting. This village could be my livelihood.

Michel: (laughs) I suppose that would be the reality.

Julian: If I were a soldier, I would have no chance. But I am a traveling chansonnier.... If I can create a strategy in the head of that chansonnier, there is a possibility. ….. And with some sharp-eared companions..... This is as much as I'll say right now.

Michel: Hey now, will you leave me in suspense?

Julian: Today's maxim: All good things come to those who wait.

Michel: Julian, I'm glad I was in that jail. This will be quite the ruckus!

Michel leaves with Paulette.

Nana enters, doing her best to avoid catching anyone's attention. A loaf of bread falls out of her basket. She picks it up, dusts it off, and puts it back. Seeing her act suspiciously, Julian follows her in secret.


Scene 8 – The Orphans of War

Evening light illuminates the burned out shell of a church high on a hill above Riquewihr.

Nana approaches the church ruins by crossing the ginkyo.

From out of the ruins come four children orphaned by the war: Judith, Cecilee, Frida, Laura.

Nana: I'm sorry I'm late. Here, bread and dried meat.

Judith: We've been waiting. Hey, Frida, divide everything up carefully.

Frida: I know! This one small loaf of bread divided amongst so many. It's not the kind of thing you can do without experience.

Nana: I'm sorry it's so small....

Judith: Just as we were about to harvest the grapes, another war. Even children like us can work at harvesting, enough to live off of. …. To have to hide out here in these burnt ruins--

Laura: Nothing to eat but wild strawberries and potato leaves.....

Nana: Just endure it a little longer. The war will be over soon, and then we can make our appeal to the marchioness. All right?

Julian comes out of the shadows.

Julian: I'll help as well.

At his sudden appearance, the children hide behind Nana.

Julian: Are you taking care of these children all by yourself?

Nana: These children haven't stolen anything, they aren't thieves! Please, believe me.

Julian: Do not worry. I haven't come here to arrest the children.

The children are reassured by Julian's smiles.

Nana: Really?

Julian: But, why are they living in hiding here?

Judith: We are children who have lost our parents to war. Our homes were burned and our fields ravaged. But we have managed to survive...

Nana: ...by stealing and hiding out here. …. Every village has their hands full just feeding themselves. Children who live by stealing are treated as nuisances, hit, and rejected..... I'm an orphan too. But because of the marchioness's kindness I work for her family. Judith and Cecile here were the first that I caught trying to steal from the marquis's household. …. I couldn't coldly drive away two people in the same circumstances as myself.

Judith: Nana hasn't done anything wrong. We were the ones planning to steal.

Cecile: Please, don't beat Nana!

Julian: Nana has done a very good thing. There's no need to worry.

Nana: Oh, everyone, this man was the commander of the French Imperial Guard. He's come to save this village from war.

The children pull away from Julian.

Nana: What's wrong with all of you? He's come to save this village.

Judith: …. A French soldier...? …. That's who killed our father and mother. A French soldier.....

Cecile: This man killed father? …. This man killed mother?

The children begin to cry. Julian sings softly.

“The Children Who Know No Lullabies”

Julian:
What should I sing for
the children who know no lullabies?
What should I sing for
the children who know no warmth?
These children need
not short-lived kindness
but the bells tolling peace



Scene 9 – Peace in Alasace

The square in Riquewihr. The church bells begin to ring.

Marquis: An attack! An attack! An attack!

He runs about aimlessly.

Michel: Is the enemy German or French?

Athos: How many?

Aramis: From which direction are they attacking?

The people continue to panic, aimlessly.

Porthos: Who rang the bells?

Julian and Blanchet enter.

Julian: I did.

Michel: Julian. Then the enemy...?

Julian: Well, Blanchet, tell everyone!

Blanchet: I attend upon Count Julian Grandgeorges, and am his devoted manservant Blanchet. This here is our first meeting.

Julian: Never mind the introduction.

Blanchet: Well then... the French army with the Duke of Enghien as their field marshal, has set out from Paris, and is on the march towards Alsace..... At any rate, not being able to allow this force to arrive before news, I raced and raced here, changing stagecoaches along the way. ….. Master, I paid on your behalf, and have added it to the 500 francs.

Julian: Yes, yes. And then their arrival here?

Blanchet: At any rate, it's a large army, so they won't be able to advance as they'd like. With speed, perhaps in a few days.... On my way here I heard from a traveler from Germany, and he said that the German army will likely arrive here first.

Marquis: What shall we do? Will we be separated, I to Germany and you to France?

He begins to cry loudly.

Michel: In a few days both armies will begin to fight. … Julian.

Julian: Michel, I told you. We will not permit a war.

Michel: But how?

Julian unveils his plan.

Julian: Athos, when soldiers go to battle they bring their food with them, but in a protracted war the supplies to get them through....?

Athos: In that case, the baggage train grows until there are more wagons than soldiers. Food is provided along the way.

Julian: Aramis, if the place they are headed to is starving and they aren't able to raise provisions, then what?

Aramis: Then there is no choice but to have them sent from their own country.

Julian: Porthos, if those supplies sent from their own country don't arrive, then what?

Porthos: In that case there'd be no battle.

Michel: Julian, I've finally come to understand your plan.

Julian: Michel and the members of the troupe will go around forewarning the towns that the armies will march through, allowing the villagers to flee. Of course they won't leave any food behind. …. With nothing to eat, they'll have no choice but to turn back.

Michel: No need to tell us everything, leave it to Michel the Great!

Julian: Blanchet, return to Paris once more.

Blanchet: What!? But I've only just arrived!

Julian: Complaints and repayments will come after everything is finished. Return to Paris and seek out the aid of Manderen, the leader of the thieves. Tell him to steal the provisions carried in those wagons. Stealing is their specialty; tell him we're employing starvation tactics against the army.

Blanchet: And then, the stolen wagons?

Julian: Manderen will know what to do with them.

Blanchet can't quite understand.

Marchioness: What should we do?

Julian: Harvest the grapes.

Marquis: You say a war is beginning, yet we should harvest? ….. To say nothing of being too short-handed.

Lazlo: But if we don't harvest now, we won't be able to make the wine. And if we don't make the wine our livelihoods will be....

Julian: Exactly. Why does war occur? For territory and the taxes which can be exploited from it. Till now you haven't had to think about war during harvest time. Well, even if someone gains a victory, without a harvest there would be no future. Yet it has begun. With this war, you have begun to be wrapped up in the fight between two powerful nations. If you falter......

Athos: Commander, what is our role?

Julian: Your role is an important one that only you can do. Together with the children, you will be part of the harvest crowd. ….. Nana.

Nana and the orphan children come out.

Marquis: Aren't those the thieving orphans?

Marchioness: Where have all these children....

Nana: My lady-

Julian: I will explain everything later..... Judith, you'll help?

Judith: …. This will really stop the war, right? …. There won't be any more orphans like us, right?

Julian: Yes, I promise.

Cecile: I'll help too!

Julian: Thank you. … Now then, everyone, please give an extraordinary performance; with this acting you will re-write history. This theatrical piece which began in a wine village, associated with the god of wine Bacchus, and it will be called “Bacchus's Holy Battle”!


Scene 10 – Bacchus's Holy War

Julian alone remains in front of the curtain.

“Bacchus's Holy War”

Julian:
I do not need to be the one
who becomes happy
If just one smile
is born, somewhere
It is worth the risk to my life

Like Bacchus,
bestowing love on mankind
Like Bacchus,
bestowing courage on mankind
Like Bacchus
Like Bacchus,
flying beneath the heavens!

Julian exits via a lift.

Manderen enters via a lift.

Manderen: Count, I told you that I never forgot a debt. ….I'll undertake this job. Neither the French nor the Habsburgs will be able to give a single slice of bread to their soldiers.

The blow of the oppressed
struck in anger
will change into a tempestuous wave
A giant wave which demolishes a fortress

Those who are clumsy at living
Who seem like simple-minded fools
The lovable fools are my companions
Banding together to live

Elusive Manderen
Attacking injustice
in place of Heaven

: Count, what shall we do with the wagons? I know!

Manderen exits.

The three old musketeers enter, leading the orphans. The villagers are with them, acting downtrodden and overwhelmed.

Athos: Officer, please! If we do not harvest the grapes now, they will over-ripen and we will not be able to make wine.

Aramis: Wine-making is the only livelihood of this village. If we can't make wine, we can't pay our taxes.

Porthos: All that are left are the women and children, or the infirm. There is only us and the vineyards are so large....

Athos: If you soldiers lend us a hand, we'll be able to complete the harvest.

All:
We curse the fate
which brings us a life worse than death
Reliant on one straightforward truth
The peace at the side of Our Lord

The old musketeers, children, and women leave.

Michel and the actors enter.

Michel: The soldiers are coming! Their food rations are limited, so they are going into homes and stealing any food they can lay their hands on, without mercy. When we heard that, we fled. …. This girl was the first to warn us. ….. Won't you tell everyone once more about how cruel they were?

Adelle: No! No! I don't want to remember!

Adelle bursts into frightened tears.

Michel: You should all flee quickly too. Don't leave those soldiers so much as a bread crumb.

The villagers flee when they hear Michel's words.

Everyone leaves except Michel and Paulette. Michel crosses the ginkyo.

Michel:
I do not need to be the one
who becomes happy
If just one smile
is born, somewhere
It is worth the risk to my life

Like Bacchus,
bestowing love on mankind
Like Bacchus,
bestowing dreams on mankind
Like Bacchus
Like Bacchus,
flying beneath the heavens!

Michel exits.


Scene 11 – Falling into a Forbidden Love

The Palais-Royal gardens. Julian appears, bringing Charlotte behind him.

Julian: Now, hurry. … But softly. Softly and quickly.

Charlotte: But..... For a hostage like me to run away, won't that bring calamity down on my mother and father, on Riquewihr?

Julian: France and the Habsburgs... both armies have been circled by an enemy, and the curtain has already fallen on that great performance. This is only the prelude; never fear. …. Rather than worry, Lazlo is waiting for you.

Charlotte: Lazlo. … Lazlo is?

Julian: Before we slip away and meet Lazlo, there is something I would like to ask you, my lady. …. The young lady of a ducal family and a servant. Even if you love each other, such mingling between classes would never be permitted. … My lady, when you meet Lazlo, what will you do? Will you take his hand in yours, will such a mismatched love be permitted in this new world? Or will you return to enduring your love in secret once more?

The queen enters.

Queen Anne: I would also like to know.

Julian: My Queen....

Queen Anne: That night, when I received word of the flashy escape from the Bastille, I knew at once. Julian, that was your doing, wasn't it? And then, knowing you would next be returning for the young lady held hostage, I have been keeping watch.

Charlotte: Your Majesty, forgive me.

Charlotte falls to her knees.

Queen Anne: I also was married at my parents' command. Yes, a political marriage. A fourteen-year-old girl could never understand what such a marriage meant.... So I want to know, what would I have done had I been your age?

Charlotte: A woman must abide by her fate. …. I know this in my head. But my heart is opposed. …. To throw everything aside and run into his arms.... Your Majesty, please laugh at such a disgraceful woman.

Queen Anne: Disgraceful, you say? Your heart is beautiful. … I also had someone who made me want to throw everything aside to run into his arms. …. The king was lead to believe that I had come from Spain to assassinate him by those who slandered me, and wouldn't allow me to approach him. Those in the imperial court also avoided me for some reason. Only one person was kind to me (laughs). Strange behavior for a girl, don't you think, wanting to monopolize him and purposefully dropping the ring my mother gave me into a ditch. While he was looking for it, I could imagine that he lived for me alone. …. I, a widow, wanted to throw aside my position as queen, my position as regent, even my son, to run into his arms. … And yet, he removed himself from my sight. ….. Julian, why did he disappear?

Julian: Your Majesty, people want to rely on someone, but we must not allow ourselves to rely too much. Those who rely too much become faint of heart. I am certain that he knew of your tender heart. I suppose that he wanted you to live strongly, to protect your child as a mother, and your kingdom as regent. ….. Do you not believe that he wanted you to live strongly, not as a woman, but as a mother?

Queen Anne: To live strongly... not as a woman, but as a mother.

Julian: Even so.

Queen Anne: Now then, young lady of Alsace..... fly into his arms.

Charlotte: Then you are allowing me-?

Queen Anne: You are free. ….. I permit this as queen, do not be anxious.

Charlotte: Your Majesty. (She bows)

The two move to leave.

Queen Anne: Julian.

Julian pauses.

Queen Anne: Do you think he loved me?

Julian: Love is not something that is pursued.... It is something that is endured, and so he loved his queen more than anyone.

Queen Anne: Even now?

Julian: An enduring love does not fade beneath the flow of time.

Queen Anne: Julian.

Julian departs, leaving the queen alone.


Scene 12 – Becoming the Queen's Shield

The Palais-Royal. Noblemen and their wives enter from stage right, including Cardinal Mazarin and the Duke of Orléans. The Duke of Enghien and some soldiers enter from stage left. Enghien is plainly angry.

Enghien: Your Eminence!

Mazarin: My Lord Duke....

Enghien: Your Eminence, do you perhaps have some secret design to completely destroy your army from the rear? …. Although we have repeatedly requested rations be sent to us, not one wagon has arrived. When permission to return to France was delayed, the French army of 100,000 was completely destroyed without a battle fought!

Mazarin: We sent many wagons loaded with provisions.

Enghien: They never arrived, Your Eminence, pray tell us where they were sent?

Orléans: The cardinal is from Italy. Perhaps these wagons were sent to Italy?

The ladies titter behind their fans.

Mazarin: Word has come that the wagons were all stolen by thieves en route.

Enghien: Simple thieves? If they were stolen, then the problem isn't unsolvable.

Mazarin: Indeed. However, it seems that they were not simple thieves.

Enghien: What?

Mazarin: I had men follow the stolen wagons to discover their destination.

Enghien: And, it was?

Mazarin: The Duke of Orléans' lands.

Uproar.

Orléans: Your Eminence, what is your proof for such a fabricated tale?

Mazarin: It is no fabrication. I have a reliable witness.

Orléans: A witness.... I see, your secret design is to falsely accuse me, and embezzle the cost of the goods that were never sent, lining your own pockets? They do say that the cardinal's vaults overflow with gold, eh?

Mazarin: My Lord Duke, so you go on the aggressive when your crimes are brought to light?

Orléans: What! You are the same, Your Eminence-!

Orléans puts his hand on his sword. Enghien also starts forward with his hand on his sword.

The queen arrives.

Queen Anne: Both of you gentlemen will stand down.

All: Your Majesty.

The court bows.

Queen Anne: In the midst of a war with the Habsburgs, to continue this fighting would simply be to act as the enemy wills, would it not?

Orléans: Be that as it may, Your Majesty, to have been accused of a crime I have no knowledge of involves the honor of the royal family, and I must prove my innocence.

Queen Anne: Be silent. … This affair will be settled by the queen. You will wait upon my verdict. Understood?

All Three: Yes.

Queen Anne: Then you may leave.

Mazarin remains, the rest of the court departs.

Queen Anne: Mazarin, you are well known for angering others. …. Do you particularly enjoy being hated?

Mazarin: People constantly hate those who are placed above them. Therefore, I wish to take on the role hated in all respects. …. For the sake of my queen.

Queen Anne: For my sake......

Mazarin: So that the people's anger does not find the queen as its target. Repressing the appeals of the people through fear turns their anger on me. I shall be the queen's shield, and continue to be hated.

Queen Anne: …. Be my shield.....

Mazarin: Yes.

Queen Anne: I am pleased by your heart. However, I-

Mazarin: Your Majesty, it is because I shall have no reward that I have become your shield. I desire nothing, I simply wish to go through this life as your shield. That is all.

Queen Anne: ….. Mazarin, the opportune moment to end this war-?

Mazarin: Now is certainly the moment. The Duke of Orléans still has ambitions to the throne, but even if it were to expand into civil war now, he can fall prey to a foreign power....

Queen Anne: I see. Quickly, see to a messenger for the truce.

Mazarin: As you command.

Queen Anne: It was a long journey, but this war is finally at its end.

Quiet music begins.

Queen Anne: Mazarin, what if this incident were all the contrivance of someone, meant to bring about the end of the war?

Mazarin: There is no person other than the queen who could end the war.

Queen Anne: (laughs) And if it were no person, but a god...? If it were the god Bacchus, wandering beneath Heaven...?

The queen exits, laughing. Mazarin remains behind, watching her depart.


Scene 13A – The Young Lady Held Hostage

The square in Riquewihr. The marchioness and Lazlo enter. The women and children are harvesting the grapes.

Marchioness: The harvest is progressing well with the help of all the German soldiers. Lazlo, if the war ends soon, we can hold the Festival of St. Vincent.

Lazlo: Yes. The people of Alsace love the festival. Their joy will be clear to see.

Marchioness: A day hasn't gone by without my wishing for the end of this war and the return of the smiling faces, smiling faces of joy at the festival.

Charlotte comes running in.

Charlotte: Mother!

Marchioness: Charlotte! … Charlotte!

The two embrace.

Marchioness: But, how...?

Charlotte: The count rescued me.

Julian enters.

Marchioness: Count Grandgeorges.

Julian: We received the queen's pardon. Do not fret.

Marchioness: …. Charlotte. ... (calling) Dear! Dear!

The marquis enters.

Marquis: An attack? An attack? … Charlotte!

He runs toward his daughter with open arms, and she seems to do the same, except she veers off at the last moment to embrace Lazlo.

Charlotte: Lazlo!

Marquis: What is this!

Julian: They love each other. Will you not approve of them?

Marquis: I'll do no such thing! A daughter of our glorious House of Flovel, and a servant of all things-!

Julian: You made this same daughter of the glorious House of Flovel into a tool as a hostage. You made your daughter a sacrifice so that you could survive. But Lazlo would give his life for his lady's sake, would he not?

Marquis: But, a servant-

Julian: Those of rank do not push for their own happiness, but achieve joy in the happy faces of their people, is that not so?

Marchioness: Dear.

Charlotte: Father.

Lazlo: My lord.

The marquis nods.

Manderen enters.

Manderen: Count, the grand finale from up close, I see.

Julian: Oh, Manderen!

Manderen: We took the opportunity for a little more meddling, and stole away one other young lady from Schönbrunn.

Adelle enters with Lady Margitta.

Marquis: Margitta!

Margitta: Mother!

Margitta passes her father's open arms to hug her mother.

Julian: Manderen, what stylish choreography!

Manderen: A Parisian is always stylish.

Julian: Because of your activities, the French army has gone home with an empty stomach. …. With this, the war will be over. …. Thanks to you. (He bows his head.)

Manderen: Stop that. Whoever heard of being thanked for stealing?

Adelle: That's right.

Gaspar: From now on we can walk about with pride in being thieves.

Julian: And now for the grape harvest. Forget your different countries and different stations, and make wine. Manderen, how about it?

Manderen: I suppose it's nice from time to time to work up a sweat.


Scene 13B – The East Wind and the West Wind

The town square of Riquewihr.

First the marchioness, then the women and children, then the three old musketeers and the German soldiers appear, carrying heavy baskets of grapes.

Non-commissioned officer Müller, one of the German soldiers, calls out.

Müller: Hey, old man, that looks heavy. Don't overdo it!

Athos: Oh no, I just piled on a little too much. I mean, it's nothing important.

He slowly sinks down and takes off his basket.

Child: Nothing for it, I'll just have to carry it.

He picks it up as if it weighs nothing.

Müller: (laughs) I don't think it's the grapes piled on too much, but the years!

Porthos: Rude lout, have some sense! I won't forgive rash remarks!

Porthos looses his balance and wobbles.

Müller: Is your voice the only brave thing about you?

Aramis runs out of patience.

Aramis: Oh-ho! Those who are far lend me your ears, those who are near, your eyes! For we are the glorious.... The glorious.....

Aramis hesitates over revealing their true identity.

Müller: Have you forgotten even your name? I don't want to age.

The German soldiers laugh. The three old musketeers fume. The marquis, Charlotte, and Margitta come bearing food.

Marquis: Everyone, here is food.

The German soldiers gather. The marquis passes around bread, cheese, and wine.

Porthos: Hey, Athos, Aramis, look, wine! Although they said there wasn't a bottle left, they were hiding it! Curse them!

Athos: A lie to keep them alive. The last fortress of farmers continually robbed, you can forgive them, surely?

Aramis: But, I really want just.... one drop.....

All three gaze at the German soldiers.

Müller: Where is the food for the elderly and the children?

Marquis: Oh no, you have gone out of your way to help us with the harvest. There would be no honor in feeding you the same as all of the people in the village.

Müller: …. Thank you.....

Marquis: Think nothing of it! Thanks to you we will soon finish a successful harvest. We should be the ones bowing to you, of course.

Soldier 1: Just two or three days later and the wine would be sour and sticky. …. We make wine in my village as well. …. I wonder if they finished the harvest on time? It's all I can worry about now.

Müller: Everyone helping here are farmers themselves, worried about their own fields. However, it is impossible for them to return, so they are distracting themselves with work in the fields.

Marquis: I see.

Cecile moves forward slightly, drawn by the food.

Müller: Are you hungry?

Cecile: …...

Judith: Cecile, come here!

Cecile reluctantly goes back.

Müller: Won't you give this food to the children? And the wine to the elderly.... We are farmers, too, and used to a simple diet.

Marquis: Your words are too kind.

The food is shared among all of those who had been working on the harvest.

Marchioness: If everyone were able to share one loaf of bread, there would be no war. But when someone decides on a monopoly, then the fighting.... You will someday be married and have children of your own. When you have children, tell them this..... 'Always leave the windows of your house wide open, so that both the West Wind and the East Wind can blow in equally.'

Margitta: The French and the Germans are embracing each other.

Charlotte: If the war ends, the peace will have begun in Alsace, won't it?

Marchioness: That's right. …. In Alsace, where we knew the value of peace better than anyone.

The church bells begin to ring.

Marchioness: What is it? … Why are the bells ringing now?

Marquis: An attack, an attack!

Lazlo enters.

Lazlo: The war is over! France and the Habsburgs have entered into a peace agreement!

Everyone is overjoyed.


Scene 14 – The Festival of St. Vincent

The square in Riquewihr. The festival to St. Vincent, patron saint of grapes. Michel and Paulette, Manderen and Adelle, Lazlo and Charlotte, and other couples dance. The three old musketeers dance inebriatedly. Julian enters on the back of the wagon.

Julian:
I do not need to be the one
who becomes happy
If just one smile
is born, somewhere
It is worth the risk to my life

Like Bacchus,
bestowing love on mankind
Like Bacchus,
bestowing dreams on mankind
Like Bacchus
Like Bacchus,
flying beneath the heavens!

The marquis and marchioness enter and everyone dances once more, before leaving Julian and Michel alone in the square.


Scene 15 – When I Look Back, There is Love

Michel and Paulette walk forward.

Michel:
I do not need to be the one
who becomes happy

: If everyone is happy, that is enough. Bestowing love and bestowing courage, I can go forth watching the smiling faces of the people. A life without greed. …. But I like that way of life.

Julian joins them.

Michel: You'll leave without saying farewell to anyone?

Julian: If I continue my wandering travels, we will meet again someday. I'll look forward to that day..... So long.

Julian begins to walk away.

Michel: Always only a mediator, and where does that leave you?

Julian: (Walking away) Regarding what?

Michel: I'm asking if you are in love.

Julian: (Still walking) I am, a heroic love.

Michel: With whom?

Julian: (Still walking) Rather than worry about others, worry about yourself. So long, Michel.

Julian exits.

Michel: I'm fine. When I look back, my love is there.

Gentle music.

Michel: Paulette, a troubadour intoxicates people with pretty words of love. Words of love are the tools of my trade.... But the most suitable words aren't used as tools, they remain. For you.

“When I Look Back, There is My Love”

He chases a dream of freedom
and consoles himself over the prison at the end of the struggle
with the art of aloofness
There was a woman who waited
for his release

When I look back
you are always there
When I look back
love is always there
For a wanderer like me, you are my home
The peaceful place I will return to in the end

: From now on I will not be able to look back, because now I will go forward gazing only at you.

Paulette:
Even if you did not turn back to me
I would want to stay by your side
Having watched you, just that
and waiting for you bring me joy

God has granted me
my modest prayer
You cannot see
how overjoyed I am

Michel: Paulette, now it is your turn to look back.

Michel:
When I look back
you are always there
When I look back
love is always there
For a wanderer like me,
you are my home
The peaceful place
I will return to in the end
Paulette:
I followed,
you were always there
When I look back
love is always there
You, you
You, you
You, you
The peaceful place

Both:
When we look back
There are the footprints of our love
The footprints of our love

They embrace.


Scene 16 – A Love That Cannot Remain in This World

The courtyard of the Palais-Royal. The noblemen and women are lined up awaiting the king's arrival. The Master of Ceremonies announces the arrival of King Louis XIV.

“The King's Arrival”

Ceremony Chamberlains:
A great star
Has alighted amongst the Bourbon
Praised as the son of a god
He is the Sun King, His Majesty Louis XIV

Little King Louis XIV is barely seven years old. He follows Queen Anne in and settles on his throne as everyone bows to him. The queen takes her spot beside him.

Mazarin: Your Majesty, we are pleased to see you in good health.

King Louis XIV: Everyone, let us commence.

Mazarin: Your Majesty, a congress will be held with the Habsburgs over the armistice accord. If the war is at an end, rewards for deeds of arms must be awarded. Field Marshal Enghien had a great many military achievements in the Battle of Rocroi, but in Alsace-

Enghien: Whatever the reason; the truth is that we returned without once engaging the enemy. There is no excuse.

Mazarin: The reason is of utmost importance. Supplies from the rear were cut off; no matter how glorious a war hero the Duke of Enghien may be, he could not be victorious. …. And then, from his allies-

Orléans: Your Eminence, must you go on?

Queen Anne: Silence, you are in the presence of your king. Everyone, I declared that this affair would be settled by the queen. Your Eminence, it is the height of insolence to bring this before His Majesty without my approval.

Mazarin: My apologies.

Queen Anne: My judgment on this matter.... Duke of Enghien, you fought for your king, and so your military prowess is impeccable. As a reward, we will increase your holdings with Bayeux.

Enghien: My queen, it is an undeserved honor.

Queen Anne: My Lord Duke, your thanks are better due to your king.

Enghien bows to the little king.

Enghien: Your Majesty.

Queen Anne: Duke of Orléans, from you we shall receive the Dukedom of Blois. …. You understand our reasons without their being spoken.

Orléans: Your Majesty, we understand and agree to your discretion.

Queen Anne: Your Highness, this discretion was decided by myself. It will remain outside the knowledge of His Majesty. ….. His Majesty will now depart.

King Louis XIV makes a dignified exit at his mother's biding.

Everyone bows and departs as well, leaving only the queen and Mazarin.

Queen Anne: Mazarin, as you have been my shield, so shall I be His Majesty's shield and take the burden of all the hatred. ….. For my son's sake.

Mazarin bows and exits.

Queen Anne: To live strongly, not as a woman, but as a mother. …. Julian, this is well, is it not?

Julian emerges from the shadows.

Julian: Yes, it is well.

Queen Anne: Julian.... I didn't think I would see you again. …. Well met.

Julian: I have come for our final farewell.

Queen Anne: Where will you go this time? (laughs) There's no help for it, a wandering chansonnier will be off to his next destination.

Julian: I shall flit about beneath Heaven, and sing. Nothing more than that.

Queen Anne: So you shall live, turning your back on happiness?

Julian: Yes. I cannot endure the weight of my heart among happiness.

Queen Anne: Yes. You can forget amongst pain. …. It's snowing. ….. On the day we first met, it was snowing-

“A Love That Cannot Remain in This World”

Julian:
The dancing snow adorned our meeting
Burdened with a destined marriage
A girl shivering in an unknown land

So many years passed, gazing upon you
In time I was enchanted by you

Time accumulates mercilessly
Love so strong, bottomless
Love which has matured in the flow of time
Does not disappear, it scores the heart

A group of nuns crosses the courtyard, causing Julian and the queen to break apart.

Julian:
An unforgivable love
Kept hidden in my heart
Kept hidden, kept hidden, everlastingly
A love that cannot remain in this world

Queen Anne:
The dancing snow adorned our meeting
My solitary loneliness
was eased by a smile which softened my heart

So many years passed, depending upon you
In time I fell in love with you

Time accumulates mercilessly
Love so strong, bottomless
Love which has matured in the flow of time
Does not disappear, it scores the heart

Julian moves as if to hold the queen close, when the nuns pass through the courtyard again and they break apart.

Both:
An unforgivable love
Kept hidden in my heart
Kept hidden, kept hidden, everlastingly
A love that cannot remain in this world

Julian: It is time to part.

Queen Anne: Julian....

Julian: Your Majesty, let us stand strong against the love which cannot remain in this world.

Julian departs. The queen stands alone amongst the falling snow.

Queen Anne: Julian!

Only his voice echoes over the falling snow.

Julian:
An unforgivable love
Kept hidden in my heart
Kept hidden, kept hidden, everlastingly
A love that cannot remain in this world

An unforgivable love
Kept hidden in my heart
Kept hidden, kept hidden, everlastingly
A love that cannot remain in this world