Emma Watson Pussy
War And Peace
how come you to be here?" asked the doctor.
"Well, you know, I wanted to see..."
"Yes, yes, there will be something to see...."
Pierre got out and talked to the doctor, explaining his intention of
taking part in a battle.
The doctor advised him to apply direct to Kutuzov.
"Why should you be God knows where out of sight, during the battle?"
he said, exchanging glances with his young companion. "Anyhow his
Serene Highness knows you and will receive you graciously. Thats what
you must do."
The doctor seemed tired and in a hurry.
"You think so?... Ah, I also wanted to ask you where our position is
exactly?" said Pierre.
"The position?" repeated the doctor. "Well, thats not my line.
Drive past Tatarinova, a lot of digging is going on there. Go up the
hillock and youll see."
"Can one see from there?... If you would..."
But the doctor interrupted him and moved toward his gig.
"I would go with you but on my honor Im up to here"--and he pointed
to his throat. "Im galloping to the commander of the corps. How do
matters stand?... You know, Count, therell be a battle tomorrow.
Out of an army of a hundred thousand we must expect at least twenty
thousand wounded, and we havent stretchers, or bunks, or dressers, or
doctors enough for six thousand. We have ten thousand carts, but we
need other things as well--we must manage as best we can!"
The strange thought that of the thousands of men, young and old, who
had stared with merry surprise at his hat (perhaps the very men he had
noticed), twenty thousand were inevitably doomed to wounds and death
"They may die tomorrow; why are they thinking of anything but
death?" And by some latent sequence of thought the descent of the
Mozhaysk hill, the carts with the wounded, the ringing bells, the
slanting rays of the sun, and the songs of the cavalrymen vividly
recurred to his mind.
"The cavalry ride to battle and meet the wounded and do not for a
moment think of what awaits them, but pass by, winking at the wounded.
Yet from among these men twenty thousand are doomed to die, and they
wonder at my hat! Strange!" thought Pierre, continuing his way to
In front of a landowners house to the left of the road stood
carriages, wagons, and crowds of orderlies and sentinels. The
commander in chief was putting up there, but just when Pierre
arrived he was not in and hardly any of the staff were there--they had
gone to the church service. Pierre drove on toward Gorki.
When he had ascended the hill and reached the little village street,
he saw for the first time peasant militiamen in their white shirts and
with crosses on their caps, who, talking and laughing loudly, animated
and perspiring, were at work on a huge knoll overgrown with grass to
the right of the road.
Some of them were digging, others were wheeling barrowloads of earth
along planks, while others stood about doing nothing.
Two officers were standing on the knoll, directing the men. On
seeing these peasants, who were evidently still amused by the
novelty of their position as soldiers, Pierre once more thought of the
wounded men at Mozhaysk and understood what the soldier had meant when
he said: "They want the whole nation to fall on them." The sight of
these bearded peasants at work on the battlefield, with their queer,
clumsy boots and perspiring necks, and their shirts opening from the
left toward the middle, unfastened, exposing their sunburned
collarbones, impressed Pierre more strongly with the solemnity and
importance of the moment than anything he had yet seen or heard.
Pierre stepped out of his carriage and, passing the toiling
militiamen, ascended the knoll from which, according to the doctor,
the battlefield could be seen.
It was about eleven oclock. The sun shone somewhat to the left
and behind him and brightly lit up the enormous panorama which, rising
like an amphitheater, extended before him in the clear rarefied
From above on the left, bisecting that amphitheater, wound the
Smolensk highroad, passing through a village with a white church
some five hundred paces in front of the knoll and below it. This was
Borodino. Below the village the road crossed the river by a bridge
and, winding down and up, rose higher and higher to the village of
Valuevo visible about four miles away, where Napoleon was then
stationed. Beyond Valuevo the road disappeared into a yellowing forest
on the horizon. Far in the distance in that birch
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