Dido & Mabel + Dido’s self consciousness and bonding (extract taken from script)

DIDO, in night-clothes, drags a brush through tight ringlets. She stops, observes, a moment as ELIZABETH runs a comb through her own silken hair. DIDO You are so beautiful, Bette. A tentative knock and MABEL enters - DIDO becomes tense. MABEL speaks gently - strong Welsh accent. […] MABEL pauses as DIDO struggles with her hair. MABEL Can I help you with that, Miss Lindsay? DIDO struggles once again, wrenching the brush. MABEL You must start from the ends, miss. DIDO stares at her - a long beat

Candle lit faces… DIDO’s reflection in the mirror - her hair separated into four sections. In the reflection BG, ELIZABETH sits serenely watching MABEL brushing through each section from ends to roots. MABEL (CONT’D) My Mam taught me, see? DIDO stares at her a moment, some kind of pain resonates in her eyes as her face softens and she begins to relax.


LADY ASHFORD: Then let me be clear that I have understood. Your charge - your mulatto charge… LADY MANSFIELD: (fiercely protective) That is enough! DIDO sits staring at the floor. OLIVER cuts in, aggrieved. OLIVER: (to Lady Mansfield) Is it not true enough, your ladyship? LADY ASHFORD: whose unfortunate circumstances of birth, we chose to forgive - has decided she no longer wishes the match with my son - a gentleman and an officer. OLIVER stares across at DIDO. He speaks quietly. OLIVER: Why, Miss Lindsay? DIDO is silent. LADY ASHFORD: (poignant and pained) Do you feel I have any lesser need to ensure my child’s wellbeing and future than you?…(beat)…Does she still have a tongue?
― Excerpt taken from script