The scene opens with Cleopatra instructing her attendants, Charmian, Alexas, and Iras, to aid her in a plan. They are to find Antony and observe what sort of mood he is in. If he seems to be happy, they are to tell him that Cleopatra is ill. But if he seems sad or moody, on the other hand, they are to tell him that she is "dancing." Presumably, her purpose is to make Antony feel guilty about being away from her; she wants to make him think about her — anything to draw his attention to her. It is a transparent and childish device, more typical of an adolescent than of a woman deeply in love.Antony enters and wants to tell Cleopatra the sad news of Fulvia's death. However, Cleopatra is so involved in the game that she is playing that she doesn't notice that Antony is trying to tell her something important. He keeps trying to interrupt her egotistical monologue, but he cannot manage
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