Give a brief account of Raina's first meeting with Bluntschli in "Arms and the Man".

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dymatsuoka eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Raina is readying for bed in the darkness of her chamber when she sees her shutters open and close and hears ragged breathing in her room.  A match is briefly lit and then put out, and a man's voice warns her not to shout out or she will be shot.  The man instructs Raina to strike a light, and when she does she sees "a man of about 35, in a deplorable plight, bespattered with mud and blood and snow".  The man reveals that he is a fugitive from a nearby battle, a mercenary member of the opposing army, and that it is imperative that he not be discovered by the homeland troops.  He points out Raina's skimpy night attire and refuses to allow her to get a cloak, shrewdly calculating that, dressed as she is, she would not want her room overrun by soldiers searching for him.  The two engage in a barbed but witty repartee; the soldier tells an incredulous Raina that he keeps chocolate in his revolver case instead of cartridges, as he has found the former to be more useful in battle.  He further expresses his unsentimental views of surviving under fire, views which contrast sharply with Raina's romantic perceptions of war.  After awhile, touched by the "chocolate soldier's" predicament, Raina agrees to give him refuge, and goes to tell her mother of his presence.  The exhausted soldier falls asleep on Raina's bed and cannot be roused, so Raina and her mother take pity on him and let him sleep (Act I).