thoughts of home, of her husband and son, and the details of the day ahead, and days to follow, came thronging upon her.

At Peterburg, as soon as the train stopped and she got out, the first face that attracted her attention was that of her husband. `Oh, my God! What has happened to his ears?' she thought looking at his frigid and imposing figure, and especially the ears, that struck her so now, as they propped up the brim of his round hat. Catching sight of her he went to meet her, pursing his lips into their habitual mocking smile, and fixing her with his big, tired eyes. Some unpleasant sensation contracted her heart as she met his obdurate and tired glance, as though she had expected to see him a different man. She was particularly struck by that feeling of dissatisfaction with herself which she experienced on meeting him. This was an intimate, familiar feeling, like that state of dissimulation which she experienced in her relations with her husband; but hitherto she had not taken note of the feeling; now she was clearly and painfully aware of it.

`Yes, as you see, your tender spouse, as devoted as he was during the second year after marriage, was consumed by the desire of seeing you,' he said in his dilatory, high-pitched voice, and in that tone which he almost always used to her - a tone of bantering at anyone who should speak thus in earnest.

`Is Seriozha quite well?' she asked.

`And is this all the reward,' said he, `for my ardor? He's well - quite well....'

  By PanEris using Melati.

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