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308

The Bride

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Chekhov, A. (2010). The Bride. In Chekhov, A. The Lady with the Little Dog and Other Stories. Penguin Classics, pp. 308-345

317

After that came a sitting-room, with a round table, sofa and armchairs upholstered in a bright blue material. A large photograph of Father Andrey, in priest’s hat and wearing decorations, hung over the sofa. Then they entered the dining-room, with its sideboard, and then the bedroom. Here in the half-light, two beds stood side by side, giving the impression that the room had been furnished with the intention that everything there would always be perfect and could never be otherwise. Andrey Andreich led Nadya through the whole house, keeping his arm around her waist all the time. But she felt weak and guilty, hating all those rooms, beds and armchairs, and nauseated by that naked lady. Now she clearly understood that she no longer loved Andrey Andreich and that perhaps she never had. But how could she put it into words, whom could she tell and what good would it do? This was something she did not and could not understand, although she had thought about it for days and nights on end. He was holding her round the waist, talking to her so affectionately, so modestly – he was happy walking around his new house. But all she saw was vulgarity, stupid, fatuous, intolerable vulgarity, and that arm round her waist seemed as hard and cold as an iron hoop. Every minute she was on the verge of running away, sobbing, throwing herself out of the window. Andrey Andreich led her to the bathroom, where he placed his hand on a tap set in the wall – and suddenly water flowed.

—p.317 by Anton Chekhov 2 months, 3 weeks ago

After that came a sitting-room, with a round table, sofa and armchairs upholstered in a bright blue material. A large photograph of Father Andrey, in priest’s hat and wearing decorations, hung over the sofa. Then they entered the dining-room, with its sideboard, and then the bedroom. Here in the half-light, two beds stood side by side, giving the impression that the room had been furnished with the intention that everything there would always be perfect and could never be otherwise. Andrey Andreich led Nadya through the whole house, keeping his arm around her waist all the time. But she felt weak and guilty, hating all those rooms, beds and armchairs, and nauseated by that naked lady. Now she clearly understood that she no longer loved Andrey Andreich and that perhaps she never had. But how could she put it into words, whom could she tell and what good would it do? This was something she did not and could not understand, although she had thought about it for days and nights on end. He was holding her round the waist, talking to her so affectionately, so modestly – he was happy walking around his new house. But all she saw was vulgarity, stupid, fatuous, intolerable vulgarity, and that arm round her waist seemed as hard and cold as an iron hoop. Every minute she was on the verge of running away, sobbing, throwing herself out of the window. Andrey Andreich led her to the bathroom, where he placed his hand on a tap set in the wall – and suddenly water flowed.

—p.317 by Anton Chekhov 2 months, 3 weeks ago
322

Only now did Nadya begin to cry. Only now did she realize that she was actually leaving – even when she had said goodbye to Grandmother and looked at her mother she still hadn’t believed it. Farewell, dear old town! Suddenly she remembered everything: Andrey, his father, the new house, the naked lady with the vase. None of these things frightened or oppressed her any more – it all seemed so mindless and trivial, and was receding ever further into the past. When they climbed into the carriage and the train moved off, all that past existence which had seemed so large, so serious, now dwindled into insignificance, and a vast, broad future opened out before her, a future she had hardly dreamt of. The rain beat against the carriage windows and all she could see was green fields, with glimpses of telegraph poles and birds on the wires. Suddenly she gasped for joy: she remembered that she was travelling to freedom, that she was going to study – it was exactly the same as running away to join the Cossacks, as it was called long, long ago. She laughed, she wept, she prayed.

‘Don’t worry!’ Sasha said, grinning. ‘Everything’s going to be all right!’

—p.322 by Anton Chekhov 2 months, 3 weeks ago

Only now did Nadya begin to cry. Only now did she realize that she was actually leaving – even when she had said goodbye to Grandmother and looked at her mother she still hadn’t believed it. Farewell, dear old town! Suddenly she remembered everything: Andrey, his father, the new house, the naked lady with the vase. None of these things frightened or oppressed her any more – it all seemed so mindless and trivial, and was receding ever further into the past. When they climbed into the carriage and the train moved off, all that past existence which had seemed so large, so serious, now dwindled into insignificance, and a vast, broad future opened out before her, a future she had hardly dreamt of. The rain beat against the carriage windows and all she could see was green fields, with glimpses of telegraph poles and birds on the wires. Suddenly she gasped for joy: she remembered that she was travelling to freedom, that she was going to study – it was exactly the same as running away to join the Cossacks, as it was called long, long ago. She laughed, she wept, she prayed.

‘Don’t worry!’ Sasha said, grinning. ‘Everything’s going to be all right!’

—p.322 by Anton Chekhov 2 months, 3 weeks ago
324

‘I’m going down to the Volga the day after tomorrow,’ Sasha said, ‘and then I’ll be taking the fermented mare’s milk cure – drinking koumiss. A friend of mine and his wife are coming with me. The wife’s quite amazing. I’ve been trying to win her over and persuade her to go and study. I want her life to be transformed.’

what a mensch

—p.324 by Anton Chekhov 2 months, 3 weeks ago

‘I’m going down to the Volga the day after tomorrow,’ Sasha said, ‘and then I’ll be taking the fermented mare’s milk cure – drinking koumiss. A friend of mine and his wife are coming with me. The wife’s quite amazing. I’ve been trying to win her over and persuade her to go and study. I want her life to be transformed.’

what a mensch

—p.324 by Anton Chekhov 2 months, 3 weeks ago