“Go away!” she said quietly, with infinite hatred.
“Liuba ... Liubochka ...” Soloviev began to mumble. “I searched ... searched for you ... I ... Honest to God, I’m not like that one ... like Lichonin ... I’m in earnest ... even right now, even to-day.
“Go away!” still more quietly pronounced Liubka.
“I’m serious ... I’m serious ... I’m not trifling, I want to marry...”
“Oh, you creature!” suddenly squealed out Liubka, and quickly, hard, peasant-like, hit Soloviev on the cheek with her palm.
Soloviev stood a little while, slightly swaying. His eyes were like those of a martyr ... The mouth half-open, with mournful creases at the sides.
“Go away! Go away! I can’t bear to look at all of you!” Liubka was screaming with rage. “Hangmen, swine!”
Soloviev unexpectedly covered his face with his palms and went back, without knowing his way, with uncertain steps, like one drunk.
And in reality, the words of Tamara proved to be prophetic: since the funeral of Jennie not more than two weeks had passed, but during this brief space of time so many events burst over the house of Emma Edwardovna as do not befall sometimes even in half a decade.
On the very next day they had to send off to a charitable institution—into a lunatic asylum—the unfortunate Pashka, who had fallen completely into feeble-mindedness. The doctors said that there was no hope of her ever improving. And in reality, as they had placed her in the hospital on the floor, upon a straw mattress, so did she remain upon it without getting up from it to her very death; submerging more and more into the black, bottomless abyss of quiet feeble-mindedness; but she died only half a year later, from bed-sores and infection of the blood.
The next turn was Tamara’s.
For about half a month she fulfilled the duties of a housekeeper, was all the time unusually active, energetic; and somehow unwontedly wound up with that inner something of her own, which was so strongly fomenting within her. On a certain evening she vanished, and did not return at all to the establishment...
The matter of fact was, that in the city she had carried on a protracted romance with a certain notary—an elderly man, sufficiently rich, but exceedingly niggardly. Their acquaintance had been scraped up yet a year back, when they had been by chance travelling together on the same steamer to a suburban monastery, and had begun a conversation. The clever, handsome Tamara; her enigmatic, depraved smile; her entertaining conversation; her modest manner of deporting herself, had captivated the notary. She had even then marked down for herself this elderly man with picturesque gray hair, with seigniorial manners; an erstwhile jurisconsult and a man of good family. She did not tell him about her profession—it pleased her rather