5. CHAPTER V
"Let me go," Dounia implored. Svidrigailov shuddered. Her voice now
was quite different.
"Then you don't love me?" he asked softly. Dounia shook her head.
"And . . . and you can't? Never?" he whispered in despair.
There followed a moment of terrible, dumb struggle in the heart of
Svidrigailov. He looked at her with an indescribable gaze. Suddenly he
withdrew his arm, turned quickly to the window and stood facing it.
Another moment passed.
"Here's the key."
He took it out of the left pocket of his coat and laid it on the table
behind him, without turning or looking at Dounia.
"Take it! Make haste!"
He looked stubbornly out of the window. Dounia went up to the table to
take the key.
"Make haste! Make haste!" repeated Svidrigailov, still without turning
or moving. But there seemed a terrible significance in the tone of
that "make haste."
Dounia understood it, snatched up the key, flew to the door, unlocked
it quickly and rushed out of the room. A minute later, beside herself,
she ran out on to the canal bank in the direction of X. Bridge.
Svidrigailov remained three minutes standing at the window. At last he
slowly turned, looked about him and passed his hand over his forehead.
A strange smile contorted his face, a pitiful, sad, weak smile, a
smile of despair. The blood, which was already getting dry, smeared
his hand. He looked angrily at it, then wetted a towel and washed his
temple. The revolver which Dounia had flung away lay near the door and
suddenly caught his eye. He picked it up and examined it. It was a
little pocket three-barrel revolver of old-fashioned construction.
There were still two charges and one capsule left in it. It could be
fired again. He thought a little, put the revolver in his pocket, took
his hat and went out.