A carriage carrying Roxane has just arrived at the camp. Christian rushes forward to embrace Roxane, and asks her why she’s here. Cyrano mutters to himself, “dare I look at her?” Roxane explains that she’s arranged for a royal carriage to drive her out into the war-torn country. She was able to move past enemy lines, she says, with “woman’s tricks.” Whenever a soldier asked her where she was going, she would give a dazzling smile and explain that she was going to see her lover.
Cyrano’s love for Roxane seems almost purely intellectual and spiritual at this point, however it may have started out: he can’t even stand to look at her, so painful is the knowledge that she’s married to someone else. We’re also reminded here that Roxane is a match for Cyrano’s cleverness and bravery—like Cyrano himself, she sneaks across enemy lines for the sake of love. She also exhibits her own kind of “panache” here.
Reluctantly, Christian tells Roxane that she’ll need to leave immediately—a battle is about to begin. Roxane refuses to leave, though, and promises to stay with Christian, her beloved husband. The other cadets promise to protect both Roxane and Christian. Roxane accuses de Guiche of deliberately trying to make her a widow, but he denies this. Then the Count leaves, saying he needs to inspect a cannon.
There are many different kinds of love on display in this part of the play, but the one thing that unites them all is the willingness to sacrifice one’s own interests for another person. Cyrano sacrifices his own happiness to keep a promise to Roxane, and Roxane is willing to risk her life to be with Christian. De Guiche’s selfish pettiness then seems especially out of place in this moment.