And Sergei Ivanovich took a note from under a paperweight and handed it to his brother.

Levin read in the queer, familiar handwriting: `I humbly beg you to leave me in peace. That's the only favor I ask of my gracious brothers. - Nikolai Levin.'

Levin read it, and without raising his head stood with the note in his hands opposite Sergei Ivanovich.

There was a struggle in his heart between the desire to forget his unhappy brother for the time, and the consciousness that it would be base to do so.

`He obviously wants to offend me,' pursued Sergei Ivanovich; `but he cannot offend me, and I should have wished with all my heart to assist him, but I know it's impossible to do that.'

`Yes, yes,' repeated Levin. `I understand and appreciate your attitude to him; but I shall go and see him.'

`If you want to, do; but I shouldn't advise it,' said Sergei Ivanovich. `As regards myself, I have no fear of your doing so; he will not make you quarrel with me; but for your own sake, I should say you would do better not to go. You can't do him any good; still, do as you please.'

`Very likely I can't do any good, but I feel - especially at such a moment - but that's another thing - I feel I could not be at peace.'

`Well, that's something I don't understand,' said Sergei Ivanovich. `One thing I do understand,' he added, `it's a lesson in humility. I have come to look very differently and more indulgently on what is called infamy since brother Nikolai has become what he is... you know what he did....'

`Oh, it's awful, awful!' repeated Levin.

After obtaining his brother's address from Sergei Ivanovich's footman, Levin was on the point of setting off at once to see him, but on second thought he decided to put off his visit till the evening. The thing to do to set his heart at rest was to accomplish what he had come to Moscow for. From his brother's Levin went to Oblonsky's office, and on getting news of the Shcherbatskys from him, he drove to the place where he had been told he might find Kitty.

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