Crime And Punishment Page-204

Crime And Punishment

tentative smile, as though still afraid of irritating him. “It is very possible,” answered Raskolnikov coldly. “I should say, too,” continued Zossimov with zest, “that your complete recovery depends solely on yourself. Now that one can talk to you, I should like to impress upon you that it is essential to avoid the elementary, so to speak, fundamental causes tending to produce your morbid condition: in that case you will be cured, if not, it will go from bad to worse. These fundamental causes I don’t know, but they must be known to you. You are an intelligent man, and must have observed yourself, of course. I fancy the first stage of your derangement coincides with your leaving the university. You must not be left without occupation, and so, work and a definite aim set before you might, I fancy, be very beneficial.” “Yes, yes; you are perfectly right.... I will make haste and return to the university: and then everything will go smoothly....” Zossimov, who had begun his sage advice partly to make an effect before the ladies, was certainly somewhat mystified, when, glancing at his patient, he observed unmistakable mockery on his face. This lasted an instant, however. Pulcheria Alexandrovna began at once thanking Zossimov, especially for his visit to their lodging the previous night. “What! he saw you last night?” Raskolnikov asked, as though startled. “Then you have not slept either after your journey.” “Ach, Rodya, that was only till two o’clock. Dounia and I never go to bed before two at home.” “I don’t know how to thank him either,” Raskolnikov went on, suddenly frowning and looking down. “Setting aside the question of payment—forgive me for referring to it (he turned to Zossimov)—I really don’t know what I have done to deserve such special attention from you! I simply don’t understand it... and... and... it weighs upon me, indeed, because I don’t understand it. I tell you so candidly.” “Don’t be irritated.” Zossimov forced himself to laugh. “Assume that you are my first patient—well—we fellows just beginning to practise love our first patients as if they were our children, and some almost fall in love with them. And, of course, I am not rich in patients.” “I say nothing about him,” added Raskolnikov, pointing to Razumihin, “though he has had nothing from me either but insult and trouble.” “What nonsense he is talking! Why, you are in a sentimental mood to-day, are