Emma Watson Pussy
War And Peace
to conviction. When asked what he was doing when he was arrested,
Pierre replied in a rather tragic manner that he was restoring to
its parents a child he had saved from the flames. Why had he fought
the marauder? Pierre answered that he "was protecting a woman," and
that "to protect a woman who was being insulted was the duty of
every man; that..." They interrupted him, for this was not to the
point. Why was he in the yard of a burning house where witnesses had
seen him? He replied that he had gone out to see what was happening in
Moscow. Again they interrupted him: they had not asked where he was
going, but why he was found near the fire? Who was he? they asked,
repeating their first question, which he had declined to answer. Again
he replied that he could not answer it.
"Put that down, thats bad... very bad," sternly remarked the
general with the white mustache and red flushed face.
On the fourth day fires broke out on the Zubovski rampart.
Pierre and thirteen others were moved to the coach house of a
merchants house near the Crimean bridge. On his way through the
streets Pierre felt stifled by the smoke which seemed to hang over the
whole city. Fires were visible on all sides. He did not then realize
the significance of the burning of Moscow, and looked at the fires
He passed four days in the coach house near the Crimean bridge and
during that time learned, from the talk of the French soldiers, that
all those confined there were awaiting a decision which might come any
day from the marshal. What marshal this was, Pierre could not learn
from the soldiers. Evidently for them "the marshal" represented a very
high and rather mysterious power.
These first days, before the eighth of September when the
prisoners were had up for a second examination, were the hardest of
all for Pierre.
On the eighth of September an officer--a very important one
judging by the respect the guards showed him--entered the coach
house where the prisoners were. This officer, probably someone on
the staff, was holding a paper in his hand, and called over all the
Russians there, naming Pierre as "the man who does not give his name."
Glancing indolently and indifferently at all the prisoners, he ordered
the officer in charge to have them decently dressed and tidied up
before taking them to the marshal. An hour later a squad of soldiers
arrived and Pierre with thirteen others was led to the Virgins Field.
It was a fine day, sunny after rain, and the air was unusually pure.
The smoke did not hang low as on the day when Pierre had been taken
from the guardhouse on the Zubovski rampart, but rose through the pure
air in columns. No flames were seen, but columns of smoke rose on
all sides, and all Moscow as far as Pierre could see was one vast
charred ruin. On all sides there were waste spaces with only stoves
and chimney stacks still standing, and here and there the blackened
walls of some brick houses. Pierre gazed at the ruins and did not
recognize districts he had known well. Here and there he could see
churches that had not been burned. The Kremlin, which was not
destroyed, gleamed white in the distance with its towers and the
belfry of Ivan the Great. The domes of the New Convent of the Virgin
glittered brightly and its bells were ringing particularly clearly.
These bells reminded Pierre that it was Sunday and the feast of the
Nativity of the Virgin. But there seemed to be no one to celebrate
this holiday: everywhere were blackened ruins, and the few Russians to
be seen were tattered and frightened people who tried to hide when
they saw the French.
It was plain that the Russian nest was ruined and destroyed, but
in place of the Russian order of life that had been destroyed,
Pierre unconsciously felt that a quite different, firm, French order
had been established over this ruined nest. He felt this in the
looks of the soldiers who, marching in regular ranks briskly and
gaily, were escorting him and the other criminals; he felt it in the
looks of an important French official in a carriage and pair driven by
a soldier, whom they met on the way. He felt it in the merry sounds of
regimental music he heard from the left side of the field, and felt
and realized it especially
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