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Anna Karenina 458

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Anna Karenina

War And Peace

shown him. Katavasov was very fond of discussing metaphysics, having derived his notions from natural science writers who had never studied metaphysics, and in Moscow Levin had had many arguments with him of late. And one of these arguments, in which Katavasov had obviously considered that he came off victorious, was the first thing Levin thought of as he recognized him. "No, whatever I do, I wont argue and give utterance to my ideas lightly," he thought. Getting out of the trap and greeting his brother and Katavasov, Levin asked about his wife. "She has taken Mitya to Kolok" (a copse near the house). "She meant to have him out there because its so hot indoors," said Dolly. Levin had always advised his wife not to take the baby to the wood, thinking it unsafe, and he was not pleased to hear this. "She rushes about from place to place with him," said the prince, smiling. "I advised her to try putting him in the ice cellar." "She meant to come to the bee house. She thought you would be there. We are going there," said Dolly. "Well, and what are you doing?" said Sergey Ivanovitch, falling back from the rest and walking beside him. "Oh, nothing special. Busy as usual with the land," answered Levin. "Well, and what about you? Come for long? We have been expecting you for such a long time." "Only for a fortnight. Ive a great deal to do in Moscow." At these words the brothers eyes met, and Levin, in spite of the desire he always had, stronger than ever just now, to be on affectionate and still more open terms with his brother, felt an awkwardness in looking at him. He dropped his eyes and did not know what to say. Casting over the subjects of conversation that would be pleasant to Sergey Ivanovitch, and would keep him off the subject of the Servian war and the Slavonic question, at which he had hinted by the allusion to what he had to do in Moscow, Levin began to talk of Sergey Ivanovitchs book. "Well, have there been reviews of your book?" he asked. Sergey Ivanovitch smiled at the intentional character of the question. "No one is interested in that now, and I less than anyone," he said. "Just look, Darya Alexandrovna, we shall have a shower," he added, pointing with a sunshade at the white rain clouds that showed above the aspen tree-tops. And these words were enough to re-establish again between the brothers that tone--hardly hostile, but chilly--which Levin had been so longing to avoid. Levin went up to Katavasov. "It was jolly of you to make up your mind to come," he said to him. "Ive been meaning to a long while. Now we shall have some discussion, well see to that. Have you been reading Spencer?" "No, Ive not finished reading him," said Levin. "But I dont need him now." "Hows that? thats interesting. Why so?" "I mean that Im fully convinced that the solution of the problems that interest me I shall never find in him and his like. Now..." But Katavasovs serene and good-humored expression suddenly struck him, and he felt such tenderness for his own happy mood, which he was unmistakably disturbing by this conversation, that he remembered his resolution and stopped short. "But well talk later on," he added. "If were going to the bee house, its this way, along this little path," he said, addressing them all. Going along the narrow path to a little uncut meadow covered on one side with thick clumps of brilliant hearts-ease among which stood up here and there tall, dark green tufts of hellebore, Levin settled his guests in the dense, cool shade of the young aspens on a bench and some stumps purposely put there for visitors to the bee house who might be afraid of the bees, and he went off himself to the hut to get bread, cucumbers, and fresh honey, to regale them with. Trying to make his movements as deliberate as possible, and listening to the bees that buzzed more and more frequently past him, he walked along the little path to the hut. In the very entry one bee hummed angrily, caught in his beard, but he carefully extricated it. Going into the shady outer room, he took down from the wall his veil, that hung on a peg, and putting it on, and thrusting his hands into his pockets, he went into the fenced-in bee-garden, where there stood in the midst

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