Emma Watson Pussy
War And Peace
every Russian," said the lawyer, bowing.
Alexey Alexandrovitch sighed, plucking up his courage. But
having once made up his mind he went on in his shrill voice,
without timidity--or hesitation, accentuating here and there a
"I have the misfortune," Alexey Alexandrovitch began, "to have
been deceived in my married life, and I desire to break off all
relations with my wife by legal means--that is, to be divorced,
but to do this so that my son may not remain with his mother."
The lawyers gray eyes tried not to laugh, but they were dancing
with irrepressible glee, and Alexey Alexandrovitch saw that it
was not simply the delight of a man who has just got a profitable
job: there was triumph and joy, there was a gleam like the
malignant gleam he saw in his wifes eyes.
"You desire my assistance in securing a divorce?"
"Yes, precisely so; but I ought to warn you that I may be
wasting your time and attention. I have come simply to consult
you as a preliminary step. I want a divorce, but the form in
which it is possible is of great consequence to me. It is very
possible that if that form does not correspond with my
requirements I may give up a legal divorce."
"Oh, thats always the case," said the lawyer, "and thats always
for you to decide."
He let his eyes rest on Alexey Alexandrovitchs feet, feeling
that he might offend his client by the sight of his irrepressible
amusement. He looked at a moth that flew before his nose, and
moved his hands, but did not catch it from regard for Alexey
"Though in their general features our laws on this subject are
known to me," pursued Alexey Alexandrovitch, "I should be glad
to have an idea of the forms in which such things are done in
"You would be glad," the lawyer, without lifting his eyes,
responded, adopting, with a certain satisfaction, the tone of his
clients remarks, "for me to lay before you all the methods by
which you could secure what you desire?"
And on receiving an assuring nod from Alexey Alexandrovitch, he
went on, stealing a glance now and then at Alexey
Alexandrovitchs face, which was growing red in patches.
"Divorce by our laws," he said, with a slight shade of
disapprobation of our laws, "is possible, as you are aware, in
the following cases.... Wait a little!" he called to a clerk
who put his head in at the door, but he got up all the same, said
a few words to him, and sat down again. "...In the following
cases: physical defect in the married parties, desertion without
communication for five years," he said, crooking a short finger
covered with hair, "adultery" (this word he pronounced with
obvious satisfaction), "subdivided as follows" (he continued to
crook his fat fingers, though the three cases and their
subdivisions could obviously not be classified together):
"physical defect of the husband or of the wife, adultery of the
husband or of the wife." As by now all his fingers were used up,
he uncrooked all his fingers and went on: "This is the
theoretical view; but I imagine you have done me the honor to
apply to me in order to learn its application in practice. And
therefore, guided by precedents, I must inform you that in
practice cases of divorce may all be reduced to the following--
theres no physical defect, I may assume, nor desertion?..."
Alexey Alexandrovitch bowed his head in assent.
"--May be reduced to the following: adultery of one of the
married parties, and the detection in the fact of the guilty
party by mutual agreement, and failing such agreement, accidental
detection. It must be admitted that the latter case is rarely
met with in practice," said the lawyer, and stealing a glance at
Alexey Alexandrovitch he paused, as a man selling pistols, after
enlarging on the advantages of each weapon, might await his
customers choice. But Alexey Alexandrovitch said nothing, and
therefore the lawyer went on: "The most usual and simple, the
sensible course, I consider, is adultery by mutual consent. I
should not permit myself to express it so, speaking with a man of
no education," he said, "but I imagine that to you this is
Alexey Alexandrovitch was, however, so perturbed that he did not
immediately comprehend all the good sense of adultery by mutual
consent, and his eyes expressed this uncertainty; but the lawyer
promptly came to his assistance.
"People cannot go on living together--here you have a
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