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"Gloria, what are you trying to do to me? We open on Thursday night, remember? This is the first chance we've had at a full dress rehearsal, you still aren't dressed, and no rehearsal means no show. And if we haven't got a show, that's every last one of us posted up the jungle. Mallum?"

"Don't mention that place, please."

"Listen, we can't be posted anywhere without the colonel's permission, and the colonel happens to think very highly of us. So we don't give him any reason to stop thinking highly. We give him a show, and we'll sit out the war here, nice and cosy. And let's all try and be professional about it, alright?"

"Professional? How can I be professional when I'm surrounded by a bunch of amateurs?"

"Don't get hysterical, Gloria."

"I can't help it! My nerves are shot to pieces this week. First there was that demonstration outside the camp with all those Indians shouting and waving banners, then the Sergeant-Major had us parading out in the hot sun for two hours yesterday, and now I've lost my diamond necklace! How am I supposed to go on without my diamond necklace?"

"They ain't real diamonds, only paste."

"It's the preservation of the illusion!"

"Just stick a couple of melons down the front of your dress, then nobody'll notice whether the necklace is there or not."

"And that's another thing, Solly. I refuse to wear my army drawers under my dress. Every time Atlas picks me up and the audience get a glimpse of them, I lose all credibility!"

"Not as much as you'd lose without them. Here, are you getting ready or not?"

"Alright, alright! Come here and lace me up at the back."

"What do I look like, a lady of the Queen's bedchamber?"

"D'you want me on that stage or don't you?"

"I don't know why you're bothering with a corset. Nobody's going to know you're wearing it."

"I'll know. And if I don't feel authentic, I can't be authentic!"

"Yeah, well, don't get too authentic. Some of those soldiers haven't seen any girls for a long time. We don't want the audience to rush us."

"D'you remember that big tall Irish captain who was here last month? He was very appreciative of my work. He said I should dress up as Vivien Leigh. We could do Gone With the Wind."

"If you wear a hoop skirt in an open air show, we will be doing. How tight d'you want this, anyway?"

"I don't want anything pinching me."

"You should be so lucky."

"Belt up. And you're going to have to get closer than that to pull properly."

"Any closer and we'll both be on a charge."

"I wish I could find my necklace. You know, a lot of things go missing around here. Lofty told me this morning that he's lost his little Krishna."

"Beg pardon?"

"You know, that statue he bought from that bint down the bazaar."

"Oh, the one that's supposed to protect you from harm? He should've kept it near the food."

"D'you think there's a thief in our basha, Solly?"

"A loose wallah? Do me a favour. The only ones who think we've got anything worth half-inching are the kitehawks. Stand still, will you?"

"You've got hot hands. And hot breath."

"In case you've forgotten, sunshine, this is Doolally. Everything's hot."

"Yes, but some things are hotter than others."

"... ruddy hell!"

"What?"

"It keeps coming out."

"I told you before, just put it through the bottom hole and pull on the other side!"

"How can I pull hard enough if you keep moving?"

"Well, shove me up against the wall and put your knee in my back."

"Go on, then, brace yourself."

"That better?"

"Yeah, much."

"Solly?"

"What?"

"Is that definitely your knee?"

"Look, d'you really fancy being Vivien Leigh?"

"I can see it now! Me, all in white with a big straw hat with ribbons on it. I'm surrounded by my admirers, but I only have eyes for Clarke Gable. 'Course, I'd have to wear my corset under a dress like that, so we'd have to do this every night."

"Tell you the truth, I have been thinking we could do with a new number in the show. Something fresh. I think it could have a lot of potential."

"Oh, lots, yes. The possibilities are endless."

"Alright, breathe out."

"If I faint in this, will you catch me?"

"Don't I always? Will you finish getting dressed now?"

"Yes. Thankyou, Solly. You are good to me."

"Any time, sweetheart, any time."

"... is that a promise?"

"Gloria."

"Yes?"

"Shut up."