Emma Watson Pussy
War And Peace
referring to the abbe whom he
had met that evening.
"That is all nonsense." Prince Andrew again interrupted him, "let us
talk business. Have you been to the Horse Guards?"
"No, I have not; but this is what I have been thinking and wanted to
tell you. There is a war now against Napoleon. If it were a war for
freedom I could understand it and should be the first to enter the
army; but to help England and Austria against the greatest man in
the world is not right."
Prince Andrew only shrugged his shoulders at Pierres childish
words. He put on the air of one who finds it impossible to reply to
such nonsense, but it would in fact have been difficult to give any
other answer than the one Prince Andrew gave to this naive question.
"If no one fought except on his own conviction, there would be no
wars," he said.
"And that would be splendid," said Pierre.
Prince Andrew smiled ironically.
"Very likely it would be splendid, but it will never come about..."
"Well, why are you going to the war?" asked Pierre.
"What for? I dont know. I must. Besides that I am going..." He
paused. "I am going because the life I am leading here does not suit
The rustle of a womans dress was heard in the next room. Prince
Andrew shook himself as if waking up, and his face assumed the look it
had had in Anna Pavlovnas drawing room. Pierre removed his feet
from the sofa. The princess came in. She had changed her gown for a
house dress as fresh and elegant as the other. Prince Andrew rose
and politely placed a chair for her.
"How is it," she began, as usual in French, settling down briskly
and fussily in the easy chair, "how is it Annette never got married?
How stupid you men all are not to have married her! Excuse me for
saying so, but you have no sense about women. What an argumentative
fellow you are, Monsieur Pierre!"
"And I am still arguing with your husband. I cant understand why he
wants to go to the war," replied Pierre, addressing the princess
with none of the embarrassment so commonly shown by young men in their
intercourse with young women.
The princess started. Evidently Pierres words touched her to the
"Ah, that is just what I tell him!" said she. "I dont understand
it; I dont in the least understand why men cant live without wars.
How is it that we women dont want anything of the kind, dont need
it? Now you shall judge between us. I always tell him: Here he is
Uncles aide-de-camp, a most brilliant position. He is so well
known, so much appreciated by everyone. The other day at the
Apraksins I heard a lady asking, Is that the famous Prince
Andrew? I did indeed." She laughed. "He is so well received
everywhere. He might easily become aide-de-camp to the Emperor. You
know the Emperor spoke to him most graciously. Annette and I were
speaking of how to arrange it. What do you think?"
Pierre looked at his friend and, noticing that he did not like the
conversation, gave no reply.
"When are you starting?" he asked.
"Oh, dont speak of his going, dont! I wont hear it spoken of,"
said the princess in the same petulantly playful tone in which she had
spoken to Hippolyte in the drawing room and which was so plainly
ill-suited to the family circle of which Pierre was almost a member.
"Today when I remembered that all these delightful associations must
be broken off... and then you know, Andre..." (she looked
significantly at her husband) "Im afraid, Im afraid!" she whispered,
and a shudder ran down her back.
Her husband looked at her as if surprised to notice that someone
besides Pierre and himself was in the room, and addressed her in a
tone of frigid politeness.
"What is it you are afraid of, Lise? I dont understand," said he.
"There, what egotists men all are: all, all egotists! Just for a
whim of his own, goodness only knows why, he leaves me and locks me up
alone in the country."
"With my father and sister, remember," said Prince Andrew gently.
"Alone all the same, without my friends.... And he expects me not to
Her tone was now querulous and her lip drawn up, giving her not a
joyful, but an animal, squirrel-like expression. She paused as if
she felt it indecorous to speak of her pregnancy before Pierre, though
the gist of
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