Crime And Punishment Page-35

Crime And Punishment

She set before him her own cracked teapot full of weak and stale tea and laid two yellow lumps of sugar by the side of it. “Here, Nastasya, take it please,” he said, fumbling in his pocket (for he had slept in his clothes) and taking out a handful of coppers—“run and buy me a loaf. And get me a little sausage, the cheapest, at the pork-butcher’s.” “The loaf I’ll fetch you this very minute, but wouldn’t you rather have some cabbage soup instead of sausage? It’s capital soup, yesterday’s. I saved it for you yesterday, but you came in late. It’s fine soup.” When the soup had been brought, and he had begun upon it, Nastasya sat down beside him on the sofa and began chatting. She was a country peasant￾woman and a very talkative one. “Praskovya Pavlovna means to complain to the police about you,” she said. He scowled. “To the police? What does she want?” “You don’t pay her money and you won’t turn out of the room. That’s what she wants, to be sure.” “The devil, that’s the last straw,” he muttered, grinding his teeth, “no, that would not suit me... just now. She is a fool,” he added aloud. “I’ll go and talk to her to-day.” “Fool she is and no mistake, just as I am. But why, if you are so clever, do you lie here like a sack and have nothing to show for it? One time you used to go out, you say, to teach children. But why is it you do nothing now?” “I am doing...” Raskolnikov began sullenly and reluctantly. “What are you doing?” “Work...” “What sort of work?” “I am thinking,” he answered seriously after a pause. Nastasya was overcome with a fit of laughter. She was given to laughter and when anything amused her, she laughed inaudibly, quivering and shaking all over till she felt ill. “And have you made much money by your thinking?” she managed to articulate at last. “One can’t go out to give lessons without boots. And I’m sick of it.” “Don’t quarrel with your bread and butter.” “They pay so little for lessons. What’s the use of a few coppers?” he