Crime And Punishment Page-207

Crime And Punishment

Raskolnikov sat seeming not to pay attention, plunged in thought with a strange smile on his pale lips. He was still meditating on something. “Well, what about the man who was run over? I interrupted you!” Razumihin cried hastily. “What?” Raskolnikov seemed to wake up. “Oh... I got spattered with blood helping to carry him to his lodging. By the way, mamma, I did an unpardonable thing yesterday. I was literally out of my mind. I gave away all the money you sent me... to his wife for the funeral. She’s a widow now, in consumption, a poor creature... three little children, starving... nothing in the house... there’s a daughter, too... perhaps you’d have given it yourself if you’d seen them. But I had no right to do it I admit, especially as I knew how you needed the money yourself. To help others one must have the right to do it, or else Crevez, chiens, si vous n’êtes pas contents.” He laughed, “That’s right, isn’t it, Dounia?” “No, it’s not,” answered Dounia firmly. “Bah! you, too, have ideals,” he muttered, looking at her almost with hatred, and smiling sarcastically. “I ought to have considered that.... Well, that’s praiseworthy, and it’s better for you... and if you reach a line you won’t overstep, you will be unhappy... and if you overstep it, maybe you will be still unhappier.... But all that’s nonsense,” he added irritably, vexed at being carried away. “I only meant to say that I beg your forgiveness, mother,” he concluded, shortly and abruptly. “That’s enough, Rodya, I am sure that everything you do is very good,” said his mother, delighted. “Don’t be too sure,” he answered, twisting his mouth into a smile. A silence followed. There was a certain constraint in all this conversation, and in the silence, and in the reconciliation, and in the forgiveness, and all were feeling it. “It is as though they were afraid of me,” Raskolnikov was thinking to himself, looking askance at his mother and sister. Pulcheria Alexandrovna was indeed growing more timid the longer she kept silent. “Yet in their absence I seemed to love them so much,” flashed through his mind. “Do you know, Rodya, Marfa Petrovna is dead,” Pulcheria Alexandrovna suddenly blurted out. “What Marfa Petrovna?” “Oh, mercy on us—Marfa Petrovna Svidrigaïlov. I wrote you so much about