The Picture by Alexander Kuprin

Russian LiteratureChildren BooksRussian PoetryAlexander Kuprin – The Picture – Contents

< < < . VII .
. IX . > > >


The prince’s love for Marya Gavrilovna did not become less, it even increased in fervency, but he had no success with the lady. He pressed his hands to his heart, and went down on his knees to her many times, but she had only one answer for him: “But what can I do if I don’t love you?” “Well, don’t love me,” said the prince; “perhaps you will love me by and by, but I can’t be happy without you.” Then she would say, “I’m very sorry for you, but I can’t help your unhappiness.” “You love someone else, perhaps,” said the prince. “Perhaps I love someone else,” said she, and she laughed.

The prince grew very sad about it. He would lie at home on the sofa, gloomy and silent, turn his face to the wall, and even refuse to take any food. Everybody in the house went about on tip-toe…. One day Rozanof called when the prince was in this state, and he too looked out of sorts. He came into the prince’s room, said “Good morning,” and nothing more. They were both silent. At length the artist pulled himself together and said to the prince, “Listen, Andrey Lvovitch. I’m very sorry that with my friendly hand I have got to deal you a blow.”

The prince, who was lying with his face to the wall, said, “Please come straight to the point without any introduction.”

Then the artist explained what he meant.

“Marya Gavrilovna is going to live with me as my wife,” said he.

“You’re going out of your mind,” said the prince.

“No,” said the artist, “I’m not going out of my mind. I have loved Marya Gavrilovna for a long time, but I never dared tell her so. But to-day she said to me: ‘Why do we hide things from one another? I’ve seen for a long time that you love me, and I also love you. I won’t marry you, but we can live together….’”

The artist told the whole story, and the prince lay on the sofa neither moving nor saying a word. Rozanof sat there and looked at him, and presently he went quietly away.

< < < . VII .
. IX . > > >

Russian LiteratureChildren BooksRussian PoetryAlexander Kuprin – The Picture – Contents

Copyright holders –  Public Domain Book

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