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I am quite distracted in mind! for this misfortune so unexpectedly to befall me, that I neither know what to do with myself, or how to act! My limbs are enfeebled through fear, my faculties bewildered with apprehension; no counsel is able to find a place within my breast. Alas! how to extricate myself from this perplexity I know not; so strong a suspicion has taken possession of them about me; not without some reason too: Sostrata believes that I have purchased this Music-girl for myself: the old woman informed me of that. For by accident, when she was sent for the midwife, I saw her, and at once went up to her. "How is Pamphila?" I inquired; "is her delivery at hand? Is it for that she is sending for the midwife?" "Away, away, Aeschinus," cries she; "you have deceived us long enough; already have your promises disappointed us sufficiently." "Ha !" said I; "pray what is the meaning of this?" "Farewell," she cries; "keep to her who is your choice." I instantly guessed what it was they suspected, but still I checked myself, that I might not be telling that gossip any thing about my brother, whereby it might be divulged. Now what am I to do? Shall I say she is for my brother, a thing that ought:by no means to be repeated any where? However, let that pass. It is possible it might go no further. I am afraid they would not believe it, so many probabilities concur against it; 'twas I myself carried her off; 'twas I, my own self, that paid the money for her; 'twas my own house she was carried to. This I confess has been entirely my own fault. Ought I not to have disclosed this affair, just as it happened, to my father? I might have obtained his consent to marry her. I have been too negligent hitherto; henceforth, then, arouse yourself, Aeschinus. This then is the first thing; to go to them and clear myself. I'll approach the door. Advances to the door of SOSTRATA'S house. Confusion! I always tremble most dreadfully when I go to knock at that door. Knocking and calling to them within. Ho there, ho there! it is Aeschinus; open the door immediately, some one. The door opens. Some person, I know not who, is coming out; I'll step aside here. He stands apart.
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