Clarissa's as happy as a clam before her parents forbid her
from talking to her new crush, Lovelace. She's dead-set against marrying gross
old Mr. Solmes, but her BFF Anna tries to stop her from doing anything rash.
When Lovelace tricks Clarissa into running away with him, her family assumes
she's a ruined lady. The stage is set for some serious complication in Act II.
Clarissa thinks Lovelace is moving her to a more respectable
living situation, but her new hangout is actually a brothel. She manages to
escape, but Lovelace reels her back in by getting prostitutes to pretend to be
his family (y'know, that old trick). Clarissa continues to resist until
Lovelace drugs and rapes her while she's unconscious. We're about as far from a
happy ending as it's possible to imagine—which is a good place for Act II to
Clarissa's a dying woman, and only Lovelace's pal Belford
can help. The prostitutes from Mrs. Sinclair's have Clarissa thrown into jail,
but Belford gets her out and finds her a doctor. Lovelace repents and wants to
put a ring on it for real, but Clarissa's already bought a coffin. Clarissa
dies, everyone repents, and Colonel Morden kills Lovelace in a duel. Bow: tied.