Emma Watson Pussy
War And Peace
stood among the Austrian officers as he had
been told to, and the Emperor Francis merely looked fixedly into his
face and just nodded to him with his long head. But after it was over,
the adjutant he had seen the previous day ceremoniously informed
Bolkonski that the Emperor desired to give him an audience. The
Emperor Francis received him standing in the middle of the room.
Before the conversation began Prince Andrew was struck by the fact
that the Emperor seemed confused and blushed as if not knowing what to
"Tell me, when did the battle begin?" he asked hurriedly.
Prince Andrew replied. Then followed other questions just as simple:
"Was Kutuzov well? When had he left Krems?" and so on. The Emperor
spoke as if his sole aim were to put a given number of questions--the
answers to these questions, as was only too evident, did not interest
"At what oclock did the battle begin?" asked the Emperor.
"I cannot inform Your Majesty at what oclock the battle began at
the front, but at Durrenstein, where I was, our attack began after
five in the afternoon," replied Bolkonski growing more animated and
expecting that he would have a chance to give a reliable account,
which he had ready in his mind, of all he knew and had seen. But the
Emperor smiled and interrupted him.
"How many miles?"
"From where to where, Your Majesty?"
"From Durrenstein to Krems."
"Three and a half miles, Your Majesty."
"The French have abandoned the left bank?"
"According to the scouts the last of them crossed on rafts during
"Is there sufficient forage in Krems?"
"Forage has not been supplied to the extent..."
The Emperor interrupted him.
"At what oclock was General Schmidt killed?"
"At seven oclock, I believe."
"At seven oclock? Its very sad, very sad!"
The Emperor thanked Prince Andrew and bowed. Prince Andrew
withdrew and was immediately surrounded by courtiers on all sides.
Everywhere he saw friendly looks and heard friendly words. Yesterdays
adjutant reproached him for not having stayed at the palace, and
offered him his own house. The Minister of War came up and
congratulated him on the Maria Theresa Order of the third grade, which
the Emperor was conferring on him. The Empress chamberlain invited
him to see Her Majesty. The archduchess also wished to see him. He did
not know whom to answer, and for a few seconds collected his thoughts.
Then the Russian ambassador took him by the shoulder, led him to the
window, and began to talk to him.
Contrary to Bilibins forecast the news he had brought was
joyfully received. A thanksgiving service was arranged, Kutuzov was
awarded the Grand Cross of Maria Theresa, and the whole army
received rewards. Bolkonski was invited everywhere, and had to spend
the whole morning calling on the principal Austrian dignitaries.
Between four and five in the afternoon, having made all his calls,
he was returning to Bilibins house thinking out a letter to his
father about the battle and his visit to Brunn. At the door he found a
vehicle half full of luggage. Franz, Bilibins man, was dragging a
portmanteau with some difficulty out of the front door.
Before returning to Bilibins Prince Andrew had gone to a bookshop
to provide himself with some books for the campaign, and had spent
some time in the shop.
"What is it?" he asked.
"Oh, your excellency!" said Franz, with difficulty rolling the
portmanteau into the vehicle, "we are to move on still farther. The
scoundrel is again at our heels!"
"Eh? What?" asked Prince Andrew.
Bilibin came out to meet him. His usually calm face showed
"There now! Confess that this is delightful," said he. "This
affair of the Thabor Bridge, at Vienna.... They have crossed without
striking a blow!"
Prince Andrew could not understand.
"But where do you come from not to know what every coachman in the
"I come from the archduchess. I heard nothing there."
"And you didnt see that everybody is packing up?"
"I did not... What is it all about?" inquired Prince Andrew
"Whats it all about? Why, the French have crossed the bridge that
Auersperg was defending, and the bridge was not blown up: so Murat
is now rushing along the road to Brunn and will be here in a day or
"What? Here? But why did they not blow up the bridge, if it was
"That is what I ask you. No one, not even Bonaparte, knows why."
Bolkonski shrugged his shoulders.
"But if the bridge is crossed it means that the army too is lost? It
will be cut off," said he.
"Thats just it,"
War And Peace page 90 War And Peace page 92