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War And Peace 557


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Where?" said Pierre. "There! There!" shouted the Frenchman at the window, pointing to the garden at the back of the house. "Wait a bit--Im coming down." And a minute or two later the Frenchman, a black-eyed fellow with a spot on his cheek, in shirt sleeves, really did jump out of a window on the ground floor, and clapping Pierre on the shoulder ran with him into the garden. "Hurry up, you others!" he called out to his comrades. "Its getting hot." When they reached a gravel path behind the house the Frenchman pulled Pierre by the arm and pointed to a round, graveled space where a three-year-old girl in a pink dress was lying under a seat. "There is your child! Oh, a girl, so much the better!" said the Frenchman. "Good-by, Fatty. We must be human, we are all mortal you know!" and the Frenchman with the spot on his cheek ran back to his comrades. Breathless with joy, Pierre ran to the little girl and was going to take her in his arms. But seeing a stranger the sickly, scrofulous-looking child, unattractively like her mother, began to yell and run away. Pierre, however, seized her and lifted her in his arms. She screamed desperately and angrily and tried with her little hands to pull Pierres hands away and to bite them with her slobbering mouth. Pierre was seized by a sense of horror and repulsion such as he had experienced when touching some nasty little animal. But he made an effort not to throw the child down and ran with her to the large house. It was now, however, impossible to get back the way he had come; the maid, Aniska, was no longer there, and Pierre with a feeling of pity and disgust pressed the wet, painfully sobbing child to himself as tenderly as he could and ran with her through the garden seeking another way out. CHAPTER XXXIV Having run through different yards and side streets, Pierre got back with his little burden to the Gruzinski garden at the corner of the Povarskoy. He did not at first recognize the place from which he had set out to look for the child, so crowded was it now with people and goods that had been dragged out of the houses. Besides Russian families who had taken refuge here from the fire with their belongings, there were several French soldiers in a variety of clothing. Pierre took no notice of them. He hurried to find the family of that civil servant in order to restore the daughter to her mother and go to save someone else. Pierre felt that he had still much to do and to do quickly. Glowing with the heat and from running, he felt at that moment more strongly than ever the sense of youth, animation, and determination that had come on him when he ran to save the child. She had now become quiet and, clinging with her little hands to Pierres coat, sat on his arm gazing about her like some little wild animal. He glanced at her occasionally with a slight smile. He fancied he saw something pathetically innocent in that frightened, sickly little face. He did not find the civil servant or his wife where he had left them. He walked among the crowd with rapid steps, scanning the various faces he met. Involuntarily he noticed a Georgian or Armenian family consisting of a very handsome old man of Oriental type, wearing a new, cloth-covered, sheepskin coat and new boots, an old woman of similar type, and a young woman. That very young woman seemed to Pierre the perfection of Oriental beauty, with her sharply outlined, arched, black eyebrows and the extraordinarily soft, bright color of her long, beautiful, expressionless face. Amid the scattered property and the crowd on the open space, she, in her rich satin cloak with a bright lilac shawl on her head, suggested a delicate exotic plant thrown out onto the snow. She was sitting on some bundles a little behind the old woman, and looked from under her long lashes with motionless, large, almond-shaped eyes at the ground before her. Evidently she was aware of her beauty and fearful because of it. Her face struck Pierre and, hurrying along by the fence, he turned several times to look at her. When he had reached the fence, still without finding those he sought, he stopped and looked about him. With the child in his arms his figure was now more conspicuous than before, and a group of Russians, both men and women, gathered about

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