he entire play takes place in the family room of the Tyrones' summer home. The year is 1912, the time is one August morning, and Mary and James enter after breakfast. We soon learn that Mary has recently returned from treatment at a sanatorium for her morphine addiction. In Act One's opening, we also learn that Edmund has been away traveling, and that recently his health has been deteriorating. He's developed a terrible cough. Jamie and Edmund enter, and James and Tyrone can't seem to resist fighting. A bit of teasing becomes bitter arguing, but Edmund and Mary intercede and calm them down. Edmund tries to tell a humorous story about one of their tenants, but Tyrone doesn't appreciate and Edmund's interpretation of events. Tyrone calls him a socialist and an anarchist, and Edmund, sick of being criticized, goes upstairs coughing. Mary is worried but refuses to hear talk that Edmund might be truly sick. She goes into the kitchen to supervise the help. With her gone, Jamie and Tyrone talk frankly about Edmund: he might have consumption.