Emma Watson Pussy
War And Peace
been trying all that
evening to get in) "I only wished to say that we are wrong to fight
pour le Roi de Prusse!"
Boris smiled circumspectly, so that it might be taken as ironical or
appreciative according to the way the joke was received. Everybody
"Your joke is too bad, its witty but unjust," said Anna Pavlovna,
shaking her little shriveled finger at him.
"We are not fighting pour le Roi de Prusse, but for right
principles. Oh, that wicked Prince Hippolyte!" she said.
The conversation did not flag all evening and turned chiefly on
the political news. It became particularly animated toward the end
of the evening when the rewards bestowed by the Emperor were
"You know N-- N-- received a snuffbox with the portrait last
year?" said "the man of profound intellect." "Why shouldnt
S-- S-- get the same distinction?"
"Pardon me! A snuffbox with the Emperors portrait is a reward but
not a distinction," said the diplomatist--"a gift, rather."
"There are precedents, I may mention Schwarzenberg."
"Its impossible," replied another.
"Will you bet? The ribbon of the order is a different matter...."
When everybody rose to go, Helene who had spoken very little all the
evening again turned to Boris, asking him in a tone of caressing
significant command to come to her on Tuesday.
"It is of great importance to me," she said, turning with a smile
toward Anna Pavlovna, and Anna Pavlovna, with the same sad smile
with which she spoke of her exalted patroness, supported Helenes
It seemed as if from some words Boris had spoken that evening
about the Prussian army, Helene had suddenly found it necessary to see
him. She seemed to promise to explain that necessity to him when he
came on Tuesday.
But on Tuesday evening, having come to Helenes splendid salon,
Boris received no clear explanation of why it had been necessary for
him to come. There were other guests and the countess talked little to
him, and only as he kissed her hand on taking leave said
unexpectedly and in a whisper, with a strangely unsmiling face:
"Come to dinner tomorrow... in the evening. You must come.... Come!"
During that stay in Petersburg, Boris became an intimate in the
The war was flaming up and nearing the Russian frontier.
Everywhere one heard curses on Bonaparte, "the enemy of mankind."
Militiamen and recruits were being enrolled in the villages, and
from the seat of war came contradictory news, false as usual and
therefore variously interpreted. The life of old Prince Bolkonski,
Prince Andrew, and Princess Mary had greatly changed since 1805.
In 1806 the old prince was made one of the eight commanders in chief
then appointed to supervise the enrollment decreed throughout
Russia. Despite the weakness of age, which had become particularly
noticeable since the time when he thought his son had been killed,
he did not think it right to refuse a duty to which he had been
appointed by the Emperor himself, and this fresh opportunity for
action gave him new energy and strength. He was continually
traveling through the three provinces entrusted to him, was pedantic
in the fulfillment of his duties, severe to cruelty with his
subordinates, and went into everything down to the minutest details
himself. Princess Mary had ceased taking lessons in mathematics from
her father, and when the old prince was at home went to his study with
the wet nurse and little Prince Nicholas (as his grandfather called
him). The baby Prince Nicholas lived with his wet nurse and nurse
Savishna in the late princess rooms and Princess Mary spent most of
the day in the nursery, taking a mothers place to her little nephew
as best she could. Mademoiselle Bourienne, too, seemed passionately
fond of the boy, and Princess Mary often deprived herself to give
her friend the pleasure of dandling the little angel--as she called
her nephew--and playing with him.
Near the altar of the church at Bald Hills there was a chapel over
the tomb of the little princess, and in this chapel was a marble
monument brought from Italy, representing an angel with outspread
wings ready to fly upwards. The angels upper lip was slightly
raised as though about to smile, and once on coming out of the
chapel Prince Andrew and Princess Mary admitted to one another that
the angels face reminded them strangely of the little princess. But
what was still stranger, though of this Prince Andrew said nothing
to his sister, was that in the expression the sculptor had happened to
give the angels face, Prince Andrew read the same mild reproach
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