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Princess Myakaya gleefully, "theyre going to ask Landau what hes to say." "Ask Landau? What for? Who or whats Landau?" "What! you dont know Jules Landau, _le fameux Jules Landau, le clairvoyant_? Hes crazy too, but on him your sisters fate depends. See what comes of living in the provinces--you know nothing about anything. Landau, do you see, was a _commis_ in a shop in Paris, and he went to a doctors; and in the doctors waiting room he fell asleep, and in his sleep he began giving advice to all the patients. And wonderful advice it was! Then the wife of Yury Meledinsky--you know, the invalid?--heard of this Landau, and had him to see her husband. And he cured her husband, though I cant say that I see he did him much good, for hes just as feeble a creature as ever he was, but they believed in him, and took him along with them and brought him to Russia. Here theres been a general rush to him, and hes begun doctoring everyone. He cured Countess Bezzubova, and she took such a fancy to him that she adopted him." "Adopted him?" "Yes, as her son. Hes not Landau any more now, but Count Bezzubov. Thats neither here nor there, though; but Lidia--Im very fond of her, but she has a screw loose somewhere--has lost her heart to this Landau now, and nothing is settled now in her house or Alexey Alexandrovitchs without him, and so your sisters fate is now in the hands of Landau, _alias_ Count Bezzubov." Chapter 21 After a capital dinner and a great deal of cognac drunk at Bartnyanskys, Stepan Arkadyevitch, only a little later than the appointed time, went in to Countess Lidia Ivanovnas. "Who else is with the countess?--a Frenchman?" Stepan Arkadyevitch asked the hall porter, as he glanced at the familiar overcoat of Alexey Alexandrovitch and a queer, rather artless-looking overcoat with clasps. "Alexey Alexandrovitch Karenin and Count Bezzubov," the porter answered severely. "Princess Myakaya guessed right," thought Stepan Arkadyevitch, as he went upstairs. "Curious! It would be quite as well, though, to get on friendly terms with her. She has immense influence. If she would say a word to Pomorsky, the thing would be a certainty." It was still quite light out-of-doors, but in Countess Lidia Ivanovnas little drawing room the blinds were drawn and the lamps lighted. At a round table under a lamp sat the countess and Alexey Alexandrovitch, talking softly. A short, thinnish man, very pale and handsome, with feminine hips and knock-kneed legs, with fine brilliant eyes and long hair lying on the collar of his coat, was standing at the end of the room gazing at the portraits on the wall. After greeting the lady of the house and Alexey Alexandrovitch, Stepan Arkadyevitch could not resist glancing once more at the unknown man. "Monsieur Landau!" the countess addressed him with a softness and caution that impressed Oblonsky. And she introduced them. Landau looked round hurriedly, came up, and smiling, laid his moist, lifeless hand in Stepan Arkadyevitchs outstretched hand and immediately walked away and fell to gazing at the portraits again. The countess and Alexey Alexandrovitch looked at each other significantly. "I am very glad to see you, particularly today," said Countess Lidia Ivanovna, pointing Stepan Arkadyevitch to a seat beside Karenin. "I introduced you to him as Landau," she said in a soft voice, glancing at the Frenchman and again immediately after at Alexey Alexandrovitch, "but he is really Count Bezzubov, as youre probably aware. Only he does not like the title." "Yes, I heard so," answered Stepan Arkadyevitch; "they say he completely cured Countess Bezzubova." "She was here today, poor thing!" the countess said, turning to Alexey Alexandrovitch. "This separation is awful for her. Its such a blow to her!" "And he positively is going?" queried Alexey Alexandrovitch. "Yes, hes going to Paris. He heard a voice yesterday," said Countess Lidia Ivanovna, looking at Stepan Arkadyevitch. "Ah, a voice!" repeated Oblonsky, feeling that he must be as circumspect as he possibly could in this society, where something peculiar was going on, or was to go on, to which he had not the key. A moments silence followed, after which Countess Lidia Ivanovna, as though approaching the main topic of conversation, said with a fine smile to Oblonsky: "Ive known you for a long while, and am very glad to make a closer acquaintance with you. _Les amis de nos amis sont nos amis._ But to be a true friend, one must

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