Emma Watson Pussy
War And Peace
really the exquisite creature I imagine you to be? But for
goodness sake dont suppose," her eyes added, "that I would
force my acquaintance on you, I simply admire you and like you."
"I like you too, and youre very, very sweet. And I should like
you better still, if I had time," answered the eyes of the
unknown girl. Kitty saw indeed, that she was always busy.
Either she was taking the children of a Russian family home from
the springs, or fetching a shawl for a sick lady, and wrapping
her up in it, or trying to interest an irritable invalid, or
selecting and buying cakes for tea for someone.
Soon after the arrival of the Shtcherbatskys there appeared in
the morning crowd at the springs two persons who attracted
universal and unfavorable attention. These were a tall man with
a stooping figure, and huge hands, in an old coat too short for
him, with black, simple, and yet terrible eyes, and a pockmarked,
kind-looking woman, very badly and tastelessly dressed.
Recognizing these persons as Russians, Kitty had already in her
imagination begun constructing a delightful and touching romance
about them. But the princess, having ascertained from the
visitors list that this was Nikolay Levin and Marya Nikolaevna,
explained to Kitty what a bad man this Levin was, and all her
fancies about these two people vanished. Not so much from what
her mother told her, as from the fact that it was Konstantins
brother, this pair suddenly seemed to Kitty intensely unpleasant.
This Levin, with his continual twitching of his head, aroused in
her now an irrepressible feeling of disgust.
It seemed to her that his big, terrible eyes, which persistently
pursued her, expressed a feeling of hatred and contempt, and she
tried to avoid meeting him.
It was a wet day; it had been raining all the morning, and the
invalids, with their parasols, had flocked into the arcades.
Kitty was walking there with her mother and the Moscow colonel,
smart and jaunty in his European coat, bought ready-made at
Frankfort. They were walking on one side of the arcade, trying
to avoid Levin, who was walking on the other side. Varenka, in
her dark dress, in a black hat with a turn-down brim, was walking
up and down the whole length of the arcade with a blind
Frenchwoman, and, every time she met Kitty, they exchanged
"Mamma, couldnt I speak to her?" said Kitty, watching her
unknown friend, and noticing that she was going up to the spring,
and that they might come there together.
"Oh, if you want to so much, Ill find out about her first and
make her acquaintance myself," answered her mother. "What do you
see in her out of the way? A companion, she must be. If you
like, Ill make acquaintance with Madame Stahl; I used to know
her _belle-soeur_," added the princess, lifting her head haughtily.
Kitty knew that the princess was offended that Madame Stahl had
seemed to avoid making her acquaintance. Kitty did not insist.
"How wonderfully sweet she is!" she said, gazing at Varenka just
as she handed a glass to the Frenchwoman. "Look how natural and
sweet it all is."
"Its so funny to see your _engouements_," said the princess.
"No, wed better go back," she added, noticing Levin coming towards
them with his companion and a German doctor, to whom he was
talking very noisily and angrily.
They turned to go back, when suddenly they heard, not noisy talk,
but shouting. Levin, stopping short, was shouting at the doctor,
and the doctor, too, was excited. A crowd gathered about them.
The princess and Kitty beat a hasty retreat, while the colonel
joined the crowd to find out what was the matter.
A few minutes later the colonel overtook them.
"What was it?" inquired the princess.
"Scandalous and disgraceful!" answered the colonel. "The one
thing to be dreaded is meeting Russians abroad. That tall
gentleman was abusing the doctor, flinging all sorts of insults
at him because he wasnt treating him quite as he liked, and he
began waving his stick at him. Its simply a scandal!"
"Oh, how unpleasant!" said the princess. "Well, and how did it
"Luckily at that point that...the one in the mushroom hat...
intervened. A Russian lady, I think she is," said the colonel.
"Mademoiselle Varenka?" asked Kitty.
"Yes, yes. She came to the rescue before anyone; she took the
man by the arm and led him away."
Anna Karenina page 123 Anna Karenina page 125