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War And Peace 217


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he had read on the face of his dead wife: "Ah, why have you done this to me?" Soon after Prince Andrews return the old prince made over to him a large estate, Bogucharovo, about twenty-five miles from Bald Hills. Partly because of the depressing memories associated with Bald Hills, partly because Prince Andrew did not always feel equal to bearing with his fathers peculiarities, and partly because he needed solitude, Prince Andrew made use of Bogucharovo, began building and spent most of his time there. After the Austerlitz campaign Prince Andrew had firmly resolved not to continue his military service, and when the war recommenced and everybody had to serve, he took a post under his father in the recruitment so as to avoid active service. The old prince and his son seemed to have changed roles since the campaign of 1805. The old man, roused by activity, expected the best results from the new campaign, while Prince Andrew on the contrary, taking no part in the war and secretly regretting this, saw only the dark side. On February 26, 1807, the old prince set off on one of his circuits. Prince Andrew remained at Bald Hills as usual during his fathers absence. Little Nicholas had been unwell for four days. The coachman who had driven the old prince to town returned bringing papers and letters for Prince Andrew. Not finding the young prince in his study the valet went with the letters to Princess Marys apartments, but did not find him there. He was told that the prince had gone to the nursery. "If you please, your excellency, Petrusha has brought some papers," said one of the nursemaids to Prince Andrew who was sitting on a childs little chair while, frowning and with trembling hands, he poured drops from a medicine bottle into a wineglass half full of water. "What is it?" he said crossly, and, his hand shaking unintentionally, he poured too many drops into the glass. He threw the mixture onto the floor and asked for some more water. The maid brought it. There were in the room a childs cot, two boxes, two armchairs, a table, a childs table, and the little chair on which Prince Andrew was sitting. The curtains were drawn, and a single candle was burning on the table, screened by a bound music book so that the light did not fall on the cot. "My dear," said Princess Mary, addressing her brother from beside the cot where she was standing, "better wait a bit... later..." "Oh, leave off, you always talk nonsense and keep putting things off--and this is what comes of it!" said Prince Andrew in an exasperated whisper, evidently meaning to wound his sister. "My dear, really... its better not to wake him... hes asleep," said the princess in a tone of entreaty. Prince Andrew got up and went on tiptoe up to the little bed, wineglass in hand. "Perhaps wed really better not wake him," he said hesitating. "As you please... really... I think so... but as you please," said Princess Mary, evidently intimidated and confused that her opinion had prevailed. She drew her brothers attention to the maid who was calling him in a whisper. It was the second night that neither of them had slept, watching the boy who was in a high fever. These last days, mistrusting their household doctor and expecting another for whom they had sent to town, they had been trying first one remedy and then another. Worn out by sleeplessness and anxiety they threw their burden of sorrow on one another and reproached and disputed with each other. "Petrusha has come with papers from your father," whispered the maid. Prince Andrew went out. "Devil take them!" he muttered, and after listening to the verbal instructions his father had sent and taking the correspondence and his fathers letter, he returned to the nursery. "Well?" he asked. "Still the same. Wait, for heavens sake. Karl Ivanich always says that sleep is more important than anything," whispered Princess Mary with a sigh. Prince Andrew went up to the child and felt him. He was burning hot. "Confound you and your Karl Ivanich!" He took the glass with the drops and again went up to the cot. "Andrew, dont!" said Princess Mary. But he scowled at her angrily though also with suffering in his eyes, and stooped glass in hand over the infant. "But I wish it," he said. "I beg you--give it him!" Princess Mary shrugged her shoulders but took the glass submissively and calling the nurse began giving the medicine. The child screamed hoarsely. Prince Andrew winced and, clutching his head, went

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