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Full Online Book HomeLong StoriesAnna Karenina - Part Seven - Chapter 29
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Anna Karenina - Part Seven - Chapter 29 Post by :Morningwing Category :Long Stories Author :Leo Tolstoy Date :January 2011 Read :1574

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Anna Karenina - Part Seven - Chapter 29

Anna got into the carriage again in aneven worse frame of mind
than Xt when she set out from home. To her previous tortures was
added now that sense of mortification and of being an outcast
which she had felt so distinctly on meeting Kitty.

"Where to? Home?" asked Pyotr.

"Yes, home," she said, not even thinking now where she was going.

"How they looked at me as something dreadful, incomprehensible,
and curious! What can he be telling the other with such warmth?"
she thought, staring at two men who walked by. "Can one ever tell
any one what one is feeling? I meant to tell Dolly, and it's a
good thing I didn't tell her. How pleased she would have been at
my miseryl She would have concealed it, but her chief feeling
would have been delight at my being punished for the happiness
she envied me for. Kitty, she would have been even more pleased.
How I can see through herl She knows I was more than usually
sweet to her husband. And she's jealous and hates me. And she
despises me. In her eyes I'm an immoral woman. If I were an
immoral woman I could have made her husband fall in love with me
...if I'd cared to. And, indeed, I did care to. There's some
one who's pleased with himself," she thought, as she saw a fat,
rubicund gentleman coming towards her. He took her for an
acquaintance, and lifted his glossy hat above his bald, glossy
head, and then perceived his mistake. "He thought he knew me.
Well, he knows me as well as any one in the world knows me. I
don't know myself. I know my appetites, as the French say. They
want that dirty ice-cream, that they do know for certain," she
thought, looking at two boys stopping an ice-cream seller, who
took a barrel off his head and began wiping his perspiring face
with a towel. "We all want what is sweet and nice. If not
sweetmeats, then a dirty ice. And Kitty's the same--if not
Vronsky, then Levin. And she envies me, and hates me. And we all
hate each other. I Kitty, Kitty me. Yes, that's the truth.
'Tiutkin, coiffeur.' Je me fais coiffer par Tiutkin.... I'll tell
him that when he comes," she thought and smiled. But the same
instant she remembered that she had no one now to tell anything
amusing to. "And there's nothing amusing, nothing mirthful,
really. It's all hateful. They're singing for vespers, and how
carefully that merchant crosses himself! as if he were afraid of
missing something. Why these churches and this singing and this
humbug? Simply to conceal that we all hate each other like these
cab-drivers who are abusing each other so angrily. Yashvin says,
'He wants to strip me of my shirt, and I him of his.' Yes, that's
the truth!"

She was plunged in these thoughts, which so engrossed her that
she left off thinking of her own position, when the carriage drew
up at the steps of her house. It was only when she saw the porter
running out to meet her that she remembered she had sent the note
and the telegram

"Is there an answer?" she inquired.

"I'll see this minute," answered the porter, and glancing into
his room, he took out and gave her the thin square envelope of a
telegram. "I can't come before ten o'clock.--Vronsky," she read.

"And hasn't the messenger come back?"

"No," answered the porter.

"Then, since it's so, I know what I must do," she said, and
feeling a vague fury and craving for revenge rising up within
her, she ran upstairs. "I'll go to him myself. Before going away
forever, I'll tell him all. Never have I hated any one as I hate
that manl" she thought. Seeing his hat on the rack, she shuddered
with aversion. She did not consider that his telegram was an
answer to her telegram and that he had not yet received her note.
She pictured him to herself as talking calmly to his mother and
Princess Sorokina and rejoicing at her sufferings. "Yes, I must
go quickly," she said, not knowing yet where she was going. She
longed to get away as quickly as possible from the feelings she
had gone through in that awful house. The servants, the walls,
the things in that house--all aroused repulsion and hatred in her
and lay like a weight upon her.

"Yes, I must go to the railway station, and if he's not there,
then go there and catch him." Anna looked at the railway
timetable in the newspapers. An evening train went at two minutes
past eight. "Yes, I shall be in time." She gave orders for the
other horses to be put in the carriage, and packed in a
traveling-bag the things needed for a few days. She knew she
would never come back here again.

Among the plans that came into her head she vaguely determined
that after what would happen at the station or at the countess's
house, she would go as far as the first town on the Nizhni road
and stop there.

Dinner was on the table; she went up, but the smell of the bread
and cheese was enough to make her feel that all food was
disgusting. She ordered the carriage and went out. The house
threw a shadow now right across the street, but it was a bright
evening and still warm in the sunshine. Annushka, who came down
with her things, and Pyotr, who put the things in the carriage,
and the coachman, evidently out of humor, were all hateful to
her, and irritated her by their words and actions.

"I don't want you, Pyotr."

"But how about the ticket?"

"Well, as you like, it doesn't matter," she said crossly.

Pyotr jumped on the box, and putting his arms akimbo, told the
coachman to drive to the booking-office.

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"There it is again! Again I understand it all!" Anna said toherself, as soon as the carriage had started and swaying lightly,rumbled over the tiny cobbles of the paved road, and again oneimpression followed rapidly upon another."Yes; what was the last thing I thought of so clearly?" she triedto recall it. "'Tiutkin, coiffeur?'--no, not that. Yes, of whatYashvin says, the struggle for existence and hatred is the onething that holds men together. No, it's a useless journey you'remaking," she said, mentally addressing a party in a coach andfour, evidently going for an excursion into the country. "And thedog you're taking with
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It was bright and sunny. A fine rain had been falling all themorning, and now it had not long cleared up. The iron roofs, theflags of the roads, the flints of the pavements, the wheels andleather, the brass and the tinplate of the carriages--allglistened brightly in the May sunshine. It was three o'clock, andthe very liveliest time in the streets.As she sat in a corner of the comfortable carriage, that hardlyswayed on its supple springs, while the grays trotted swiftly, inthe midst of the unceasing rattle of wheels and the changingimpressions in the pure air, Anna ran over the events of
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