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There are stains

Le 20 février 2017, 05:41 dans Humeurs 0

 all covered with dirt, and rubbed and already discoloured. No one who had no suspicion could distinguish anything. Nastasya from a distance could not have noticed, thank God!" Then with a tremor he broke the seal of the notice and began reading; he was a long while reading, before he understood. It was an ordinary summons from the district police-station to appear that day at half-past nine at the office of the district superintendent.

"But when has such a thing happened? I never have anything to do with the police! And why just to-day?" he thought in agonising bewilderment. "Good God, only get it over soon!"

He was flinging himself on his knees to pray, but broke into laughter --not at the idea of prayer, but at himself.

He began, hurriedly dressing. "If I'm lost, I am lost, I don't care! Shall I put the sock on?" he suddenly wondered, "it will get dustier still and the traces will be gone."

But no sooner had he put it on than he pulled it off again in loathing and horror. He pulled it off, but reflecting that he had no other socks, he picked it up and put it on again--and again he laughed.

"That's all conventional, that's all relative, merely a way of looking at it," he thought in a flash, but only on the top surface of his mind, while he was shuddering all over, "there, I've got it on! I have finished by getting it on!"

But his laughter was quickly followed by despair.

"No, it's too much for me . . ." he thought. His legs shook. "From fear," he muttered. His head swam and ached with fever. "It's a trick! They want to decoy me there and confound me over everything," he mused, as he went out on to the stairs--"the worst of it is I'm almost light-headed . . . I may blurt out something stupid . . ."

On the stairs he remembered that he was leaving all the things just as they were in the hole in the wall, "and very likely, it's on purpose to search when I'm out," he thought, and stopped short. But he was possessed by such despair, such cynicism of misery, if one may so call it, that with a wave of his hand he went on. "Only to get it over!"

In the street the heat was insufferable again; not a drop of rain had fallen all those days. Again dust, bricks and mortar, again the stench from the shops and pot-houses, again the drunken men, the Finnish pedlars and half-broken-down cabs. The sun shone straight in his eyes, so that it hurt him to look out of them, and he felt his head going round--as a man in a fever is apt to feel when he comes out into the street on a bright sunny day.

this minute without lingering

Le 15 février 2017, 05:30 dans Humeurs 0

In the stove? But they would ransack the stove first of all. Burn them? But what can I burn them with? There are no matches even. No, better go out and throw it all away somewhere. Yes, better throw it away," he repeated, sitting down on the sofa again, "and at once, . . ."

But his head sank on the pillow instead. Again the unbearable icy shivering came over him; again he drew his coat over him.

And for a long while, for some hours, he was haunted by the impulse to "go off somewhere at once, this moment, and fling it all away Jingling the change in his hand he shook his head, so that it may be out of sight and done with, at once, at once!" Several times he tried to rise from the sofa, but could not.

He was thoroughly waked up at last by a violent knocking at his door.

"Open, do, are you dead or alive? He keeps sleeping here!" shouted Nastasya, banging with her fist on the door. "For whole days together he's snoring here like a dog! A dog he is too. Open I tell you. It's past ten."

"Maybe he's not at home," said a man's voice.

"Ha! that's the porter's voice. . . . What does he want?"

He jumped up and sat on the sofa. The beating of his heart was a positive pain.

"Then who can have latched the door?" retorted Nastasya. "He's taken to bolting himself in! As if he were worth stealing! Open, you stupid, wake up!"

"What do they want? Why the porter? All's discovered. Resist or open? Come what may! . . ."

He half rose, stooped forward and unlatched the door.

His room was so small that he could undo the latch without leaving the bed. Yes; the porter and Nastasya were standing there.

Nastasya stared at him in a strange way. He glanced with a defiant and desperate air at the porter, who without a word held out a grey folded paper sealed with bottle-wax.

"A notice from the office," he announced, as he gave him the paper.

"From what office?"

"A summons to the police office, of course. You know which office."

"To the police? . . . What for? . . ."

"How can I tell? You're sent for, so you go."

The man looked at him attentively, looked round the room and turned to go away.

"He's downright ill!" observed Nastasya, not taking her eyes off him. The porter turned his head for a moment. "He's been in a fever since yesterday," she added.

Raskolnikov made no response and held the paper in his hands, without opening it. "Don't you get up then," Nastasya went on compassionately, seeing that he was letting his feet down from the sofa. "You're ill, and so don't go; there's no such hurry. What have you got there?"

He looked; in his right hand he held the shreds he had cut from his trousers, the sock, and the rags of the pocket. So he had been asleep with them in his hand. Afterwards reflecting upon it, he remembered that half waking up in his fever, he had grasped all this tightly in his hand and so fallen asleep again.

He had not far to go

Le 7 février 2017, 05:29 dans Humeurs 0

 he knew indeed how many steps it was from the gate of his lodging house: exactly seven hundred and thirty. He had counted them once when he had been lost in dreams. At the time he had put no faith in those dreams and was only tantalising himself by their hideous but daring recklessness. Now, a month later, he had begun to look upon them differently, and, in spite of the monologues in which he jeered at his own impotence and indecision, he had involuntarily come to regard this "hideous" dream as an exploit to be attempted, although he still did not realise this himself. He was positively going now for a "rehearsal" of his project, and at every step his excitement grew more and more violent.

With a sinking heart and a nervous tremor, he went up to a huge house which on one side looked on to the canal Jingling the change in his hand he shook his head, and on the other into the street. This house was let out in tiny tenements and was inhabited by working people of all kinds--tailors, locksmiths, cooks, Germans of sorts, girls picking up a living as best they could, petty clerks, etc. There was a continual coming and going through the two gates and in the two courtyards of the house. Three or four door-keepers were employed on the building. The young man was very glad to meet none of them, and at once slipped unnoticed through the door on the right, and up the staircase. It was a back staircase, dark and narrow, but he was familiar with it already, and knew his way, and he liked all these surroundings: in such darkness even the most inquisitive eyes were not to be dreaded.

"If I am so scared now, what would it be if it somehow came to pass that I were really going to do it?" he could not help asking himself as he reached the fourth storey. There his progress was barred by some porters who were engaged in moving furniture out of a flat. He knew that the flat had been occupied by a German clerk in the civil service, and his family. This German was moving out then, and so the fourth floor on this staircase would be untenanted except by the old woman. "That's a good thing anyway," he thought to himself, as he rang the bell of the old woman's flat. The bell gave a faint tinkle as though it were made of tin and not of copper. The little flats in such houses always have bells that ring like that. He had forgotten the note of that bell, and now its peculiar tinkle seemed to remind him of something and to bring it clearly before him. . . . He started, his nerves were terribly overstrained by now. In a little while, the door was opened a tiny crack: the old woman eyed her visitor with evident distrust through the crack, and nothing could be seen but her little eyes, glittering in the darkness. But, seeing a number of people on the landing, she grew bolder, and opened the door wide. The young man stepped into the dark entry, which was partitioned off from the tiny kitchen. The old woman stood facing him in silence and looking inquiringly at him. She was a diminutive, withered up old woman of sixty, with sharp malignant eyes and a sharp little nose. Her colourless, somewhat grizzled hair was thickly smeared with oil, and she wore no kerchief over it. Round her thin long neck, which looked like a hen's leg, was knotted some sort of flannel rag, and, in spite of the heat, there hung flapping on her shoulders, a mangy fur cape, yellow with age. The old woman coughed and groaned at every instant. The young man must have looked at her with a rather peculiar expression, for a gleam of mistrust came into her eyes again.

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