10. CHAPTER X.
THE entrance-hall suddenly became full of noise and people. To
judge from the sounds which penetrated to the drawing-room, a
number of people had already come in, and the stampede continued.
Several voices were talking and shouting at once; others were
talking and shouting on the stairs outside; it was evidently a
most extraordinary visit that was about to take place.
Everyone exchanged startled glances. Gania rushed out towards the
dining-room, but a number of men had already made their way in,
and met him.
"Ah! here he is, the Judas!" cried a voice which the prince
recognized at once. "How d'ye do, Gania, you old blackguard?"
"Yes, that's the man!" said another voice.
There was no room for doubt in the prince's mind: one of the
voices was Rogojin's, and the other Lebedeff's.
Gania stood at the door like a block and looked on in silence,
putting no obstacle in the way of their entrance, and ten or a
dozen men marched in behind Parfen Rogojin. They were a decidedly
mixed-looking collection, and some of them came in in their furs
and caps. None of them were quite drunk, but all appeared to De
They seemed to need each other's support, morally, before they
dared come in; not one of them would have entered alone but with
the rest each one was brave enough. Even Rogojin entered rather
cautiously at the head of his troop; but he was evidently
preoccupied. He appeared to be gloomy and morose, and had clearly
come with some end in view. All the rest were merely chorus,
brought in to support the chief character. Besides Lebedeff there
was the dandy Zalesheff, who came in without his coat and hat,
two or three others followed his example; the rest were more
uncouth. They included a couple of young merchants, a man in a
great-coat, a medical student, a little Pole, a small fat man who
laughed continuously, and an enormously tall stout one who
apparently put great faith in the strength of his fists. A couple
of "ladies" of some sort put their heads in at the front door,
but did not dare come any farther. Colia promptly banged the door
in their faces and locked it.