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Anna Karenina 400

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Anna Karenina

War And Peace

expression, ostensibly addressing her brother, but unmistakably intending her words only for Levin, "now when I have such need of some occupation, I cannot." And suddenly frowning (Levin saw that she was frowning at herself for talking about herself) she changed the subject. "I know about you," she said to Levin; "that youre not a public-spirited citizen, and I have defended you to the best of my ability." "How have you defended me?" "Oh, according to the attacks made on you. But wont you have some tea?" She rose and took up a book bound in morocco. "Give it to me, Anna Arkadyevna," said Vorkuev, indicating the book. "Its well worth taking up." "Oh, no, its all so sketchy." "I told him about it," Stepan Arkadyevitch said to his sister, nodding at Levin. "You shouldnt have. My writing is something after the fashion of those little baskets and carving which Liza Mertsalova used to sell me from the prisons. She had the direction of the prison department in that society," she turned to Levin; "and they were miracles of patience, the work of those poor wretches." And Levin saw a new trait in this woman, who attracted him so extraordinarily. Besides wit, grace, and beauty, she had truth. She had no wish to hide from him all the bitterness of her position. As she said that she sighed, and her face suddenly taking a hard expression, looked as it were turned to stone. With that expression on her face she was more beautiful than ever; but the expression was new; it was utterly unlike that expression, radiant with happiness and creating happiness, which had been caught by the painter in her portrait. Levin looked more than once at the portrait and at her figure, as taking her brothers arm she walked with him to the high doors and he felt for her a tenderness and pity at which he wondered himself. She asked Levin and Vorkuev to go into the drawing room, while she stayed behind to say a few words to her brother. "About her divorce, about Vronsky, and what hes doing at the club, about me?" wondered Levin. And he was so keenly interested by the question of what she was saying to Stepan Arkadyevitch, that he scarcely heard what Vorkuev was telling him of the qualities of the story for children Anna Arkadyevna had written. At tea the same pleasant sort of talk, full of interesting matter, continued. There was not a single instant when a subject for conversation was to seek; on the contrary, it was felt that one had hardly time to say what one had to say, and eagerly held back to hear what the others were saying. And all that was said, not only by her, but by Vorkuev and Stepan Arkadyevitch--all, so it seemed to Levin, gained peculiar significance from her appreciation and her criticism. While he followed this interesting conversation, Levin was all the time admiring her-- her beauty, her intelligence, her culture, and at the same time her directness and genuine depth of feeling. He listened and talked, and all the while he was thinking of her inner life, trying to divine her feelings. And though he had judged her so severely hitherto, now by some strange chain of reasoning he was justifying her and was also sorry for her, and afraid that Vronsky did not fully understand her. At eleven oclock, when Stepan Arkadyevitch got up to go (Vorkuev had left earlier), it seemed to Levin that he had only just come. Regretfully Levin too rose. "Good-bye," she said, holding his hand and glancing into his face with a winning look. "I am very glad _que la glace est rompue._" She dropped his hand, and half closed her eyes. "Tell your wife that I love her as before, and that if she cannot pardon me my position, then my wish for her is that she may never pardon it. To pardon it, one must go through what I have gone through, and may God spare her that." "Certainly, yes, I will tell her..." Levin said, blushing. Chapter 11 "What a marvelous, sweet and unhappy woman!" he was thinking, as he stepped out into the frosty air with Stepan Arkadyevitch. "Well, didnt I tell you?" said Stepan Arkadyevitch, seeing that Levin had been completely won over. "Yes," said Levin dreamily, "an extraordinary woman! Its not her cleverness, but she has such wonderful depth of feeling. Im awfully sorry for her!" "Now, please God,

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