Anna did not even glance at him; but again it seemed to Darya
Alexandrovna out of place to enter upon such a long conversation
in the carriage, and so she cut short her thought.
"I don't think anything," she said, "but I always loved you, and
if one loves anyone, one loves the whole person, just as they
are and not as one would like them to be...."
Anna, taking her eyes off her friend's face and dropping her
eyelids (this was a new habit Dolly had not seen in her before),
pondered, trying to penetrate the full significance of the words.
And obviously interpreting them as she would have wished, she
glanced at Dolly.
"If you had any sins," she said, "they would all be forgiven you
for your coming to see me and these words."
And Dolly saw that tears stood in her eyes. She pressed Anna's
hand in silence.
"Well, what are these buildings? How many there are of them!"
After a moment's silence she repeated her question.
"These are the servants' houses, barns, and stables," answered
Anna. "And there the park begins. It had all gone to ruin, but
Alexey had everything renewed. He is very fond of this place,
and, what I never expected, he has become intensely interested in
looking after it. But his is such a rich nature! Whatever he
takes up, he does splendidly. So far from being bored by it, he
works with passionate interest. He--with his temperament as I
know it--he has become careful and businesslike, a first-rate
manager, he positively reckons every penny in his management of
the land. But only in that. When it's a question of tens of
thousands, he doesn't think of money." She spoke with that
gleefully sly smile with which women often talk of the secret
characteristics only known to them--of those they love. "Do you
see that big building? that's the new hospital. I believe it
will cost over a hundred thousand; that's his hobby just now.
And do you know how it all came about? The peasants asked him
for some meadowland, I think it was, at a cheaper rate, and he
refused, and I accused him of being miserly. Of course it was
not really because of that, but everything together, he began
this hospital to prove, do you see, that he was not miserly about
money. C'est une petitesse, if you like, but I love him all the
more for it. And now you'll see the house in a moment. It was
his grandfather's house, and he has had nothing changed outside."