"Do you know, Kostya, with whom Sergey Ivanovitch traveled on his
way here?" said Dolly, doling out cucumbers and honey to the
children; "with Vronsky! He's going to Servia."
"And not alone; he's taking a squadron out with him at his own
expense," said Katavasov.
"That's the right thing for him," said Levin. "Are volunteers
still going out then?" he added, glancing at Sergey Ivanovitch.
Sergey Ivanovitch did not answer. He was carefully with a blunt
knife getting a live bee covered with sticky honey out of a cup
full of white honeycomb.
"I should think sol You should have seen what was going on at the
station yesterday!" said Katavasov, biting with a juicy sound
into a cucumber.
"Well, what is one to make of it? For mercy's sake, do explain
to me, Sergey Ivanovitch, where are all those volunteers going,
whom are they fighting with?" asked the old prince, unmistakably
taking up a conversation that had sprung up in Levin's absence.
"With the Turks," Sergey Ivanovitch answered, smiling serenely,
as he extricated the bee, dark with honey and helplessly kicking,
and put it with the knife on a stout aspen leaf.
"But who has declared war on the Turks?--Ivan Ivanovitch Ragozov
and Countess Lidia Ivanovna, assisted by Madame Stahl?"
"No one has declared war, but people sympathize with their
neighbors' sufferings and are eager to help them," said Sergey
"But the prince is not speaking of help," said Levin, coming to
the assistance of his father-in-law, "but of war. The prince
says that private persons cannot take part in war without the
permission of the government."
"Kostya, mind, that's a bee! Really, they'll sting us!" said
Dolly, waving away a wasp.
"But that's not a bee, it's a wasp," said Levin.