While he was writing his ideas she was thinking how unnaturally
cordial her husband had been to young Prince Tcharsky, who had,
with great want of tact, flirted with her the day before they
left Moscow. "He's jealous," she thought. "Goodness! how sweet
and silly he is! He's jealous of me! If he knew that I think no
more of them than of Piotr the cook," she thought, looking at his
head and red neck with a feeling of possession strange to
herself. "Though it's a pity to take him from his work (but he
has plenty of time!), I must look at his face; will he feel I'm
looking at him? I wish he'd turn round...I'll WILL him to!"
and she opened her eyes wide, as though to intensify the
influence of her gaze.
"Yes, they draw away all the sap and give a false appearance of
prosperity," he muttered, stopping to write, and, feeling that
she was looking at him and smiling, he looked round.
"Well?" he queried, smiling, and getting up.
"He looked round," she thought.
"It's nothing; I wanted you to look round," she said, watching
him, and trying to guess whether he was vexed at being
interrupted or not.
"How happy we are alone together!--I am, that is," he said,
going up to her with a radiant smile of happiness.
"I'm just as happy. I'll never go anywhere, especially not to
"And what were you thinking about?"
"I? I was thinking.... No, no, go along, go on writing; don't
break off," she said, pursing up her lips, "and I must cut out
these little holes now, do you see?"
She took up her scissors and began cutting them out.
"No; tell me, what was it?" he said, sitting down beside her and
watching the tiny scissors moving round.