Youll hear nothing from me. If she is a child I am not her nurse. Be quiet, Alexey. Dont go on about her. I am not even thinking about it.
They were silent again for a moment.
She will be praying all night now to the Mother of God to show her how to act to-morrow at the trial, he said sharply and angrily again.
You you mean Katerina Ivanovna?
Yes. Whether shes to save Mitya or ruin him. Shell pray for light from above. She cant make up her mind for herself, you see. She has not had time to decide yet. She takes me for her nurse, too. She wants me to sing lullabys to her.
Katerina Ivanovna loves you, brother, said Alyosha sadly.
Perhaps; but I am not very keen on her.
She is suffering. Why do you sometimes say things to her that give her hope? Alyosha went on, with timid reproach. I know that youve given her hope. Forgive me for speaking to you like this, he added.
I cant behave to her as I oughtbreak off altogether and tell her so straight out, Ivan, irritably. I must wait till sentence is passed on the murderer. If I break off with her now, she will avenge herself on me by ruining that scoundrel to-morrow at the trial, for she hates him and knows she hates him. Its all a lielie upon lie! As long as I dont break off with her, she goes on hoping, and she wont ruin that monster, knowing how I want to get him out of trouble. If only that damned verdict would come!
The words murderer and monster echoed painfully in Alyoshas heart.
But how can she ruin Mitya? he asked, pondering on Ivans words. What evidence can she give that would ruin Mitya?
You dont know that yet. Shes got a document in her hands, in Mityas own writing, that proves conclusively that he did murder Fyodor Pavlovitch.
Thats impossible! cried Alyosha.
Why is it impossible? Ive read it myself.
There cant be such a document! Alyosha repeated warmly. There cant be, because hes not the murderer. Its not he murdered father, not he!
Ivan suddenly stopped.
Who is the murderer then, according to you? he asked, with apparent coldness. There was even a supercilious note in his voice.
You know who, Alyosha pronounced in a low, penetrating voice.
Who? You mean the myth about that crazy idiot, the epileptic, Smerdyakov?
Alyosha suddenly felt himself trembling all over.
You know who, broke helplessly from him. He could scarcely breathe.
Who? Who? Ivan cried almost fiercely. All his restraint suddenly vanished.
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