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When the lovers enter the stage again in Scene 2, their first night together has already been arranged by mutual consent, with Pandarus as the stage manager. Pandarus tells Troilus that Cressida is readying herself to come to him, and that she is blushing and panting, and as short of breath as if she had been frightened by a ghost. Troilus says that a similar passion is consuming him. Pandarus reenters with Cressida and proceeds to bring the couple together. When the lovers are alone at last, there is a prose ‘wooing’, then Pandarus reenters and the lovers enact a verse ‘wooing.’ Troilus has spoken of the gap between promise and performance; now Cressida speaks of the gap between her behavior in the past and her true feelings. She moves on to regret the double self that she finds in herself: the one that is at her command and can withdraw from Troilus and the other that having divided her would stay in order to be deceived by her lover’s promises.
Cressida confesses her love to Troilus. When Troilus asks her why she was so hard to get, she says she was ‘Hard to seem won’ and then adds that if she confesses too much he ‘will play the tyrant.’ Then in growing confusion, she attempts to flee the scene. Troilus affirms his faith that Cressida will indeed prove to be what he believes she is: a woman not subject to time and change. Her body might in time destroy itself, but her mind would maintain its constancy. The scene then ends with a formal statement by the lovers and by Pandarus of their function as seen by history and tradition - faithful Troilus, faithless Cressida and Pandarus the go- between. The couple exit for the bedchamber.
Ulysses tells everybody to ignore Achilles who is standing in his tent with Patroclus, and to treat him as distantly as they would a stranger. He tells them to go ahead while he would form the tail end of the party so that Achilles could question him about their behavior. So, all of them are terse with Achilles who at first thinks that Agamemnon is making another trip to convince him to fight Troy. After he is snubbed by the Greeks, Achilles becomes unsure of his status and asks Ulysses who is sauntering by pretending to read something, what he is reading. Ulysses says that the author believes that a man does not know of his own qualities until others applaud him, and that those qualities would exist only in a conceptual sense if they were not recognized. Ulysses pretends to be very impressed with this argument and says it reminded him of Ajax. He says that the fight with Hector will ‘create’ an Ajax of great consequence. Subtly inciting Achilles, Ulysses comments on how one man takes advantage of the idle pride of another, while the proud man perversely destroys his reputation just as a fasting man starves himself. Achilles asks Ulysses if his own deeds have been forgotten. He tells Achilles that his name was once in everyone’s mouth and might again be if he stopped hiding his reputation in his tent.
Achilles says he has reasons. Ulysses counters that it was known that he is in love with Polyxena, Priam’s daughter and that the Greek leadership was aware of his dealings with Troy. Achilles understands that his reputation is at stake. He decided to send a message to Ajax asking him to invite the Trojans after the duel so that he might see Hector in his "weeds of peace" and talk with him. Thersites enters and tells them that Ajax is stalking about the field, so full of pride and assured of his success that he had mistaken him, Thersites for Agamemnon. Thersites and Patroclus act out a burlesque ‘pageant of Ajax’ for Achilles. Eventually, Thersites is told to take a letter to Ajax.