Trifles - Act SCENE The kitchen in the now abandoned...

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Act SCENE The kitchen in the now abandoned farmhouse of JOHN WRIGHT, a gloomy kitchen, and left without having been put in order -- unwashed pans under the sink, a loaf of bread outside the bread-box, a dish- towel on the table -- other signs of incompleted work. At the rear the outer door opens and the SHERIFF comes in followed by the COUNTY ATTORNEY and HALE. The SHERIFF and HALE are men in middle life, the COUNTY ATTORNEY is a young man; all are much bundled up and go at once to the stove. They are followed by the two women -- the SHERIFF'S wife first; she is a slight wiry woman, a thin nervous face. MRS. HALE is larger and would ordinarily be called more comfortable looking, but she is disturbed now and looks fearfully about as she enters. The women have come in stowly, and stand close together near the door. COUNTY ATTORNEY [ Rubbing his hands. ] This feels good. Come up to the fire, ladies. MRS. PETERS [ After taking a step forward. ] I'm not -- cold. SHERIFF [ Unbuttoning his overcoat and stepping away from the stove as if to mark the beginning of official business. ] Now, Mr. Hale, before we move things about, you explain to Mr. Henderson just what you saw when you came here yesterday morning. -- 3 -- COUNTY ATTORNEY By the way, has anything been moved? Are things just as you left them yesterday? SHERIFF [ Looking about. ] It's just the same. When it dropped below zero last night I thought I'd better send Frank out this morning to make a fire for us -- no use getting pneumonia with a big case on, but I told him not to touch anything except the stove -- and you know Frank. COUNTY ATTORNEY Somebody should have been left here yesterday. SHERIFF Oh -- yesterday. When I had to send Frank to Morris Center for that man who went crazy -- I want you to know I had my hands full yesterday. I knew you could get back from Omaha by today and as long as I went over everything here myself -- COUNTY ATTORNEY Well, Mr. Hale, tell just what happened when you came here yesterday morning. HALE Harry and I had started to town with a load of potatoes. We came along the road from my place and as I got here I said, "I'm going to see if I can't get John Wright to go in with me on a party telephone." I spoke to Wright about it once before and he put me off, saying folks talked too much anyway, and all he asked was peace and quiet -- I guess you know about how much he talked himself; but I thought maybe if I went to the house and talked about it before his wife, though I said to Harry that I didn't know as what his wife wanted made much difference to John -- -- 4 --
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COUNTY ATTORNEY Let's talk about that later, Mr. Hale. I do want to talk about that, but tell now just what happened when you got to the house. HALE I didn't hear or see anything; I knocked at the door, and still it was all quiet inside. I knew they must be up, it was past eight o'clock. So I knocked again, and I thought I heard somebody say, "Come in." I wasn't sure, I'm not sure yet, but I opened the door -- this door [ indicating the door by which the two women are still standing ] and there in that rocker -- [ pointing to it ] sat MRS. Wright.
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