The princess said nothing, and suddenly her short, downy lip began to quiver; Prince Andrey got up and walked about the room, shrugging his shoulders.

Pierre looked over his spectacles in naïve wonder from him to the princess, and stirred uneasily as though he too meant to get up, but had changed his mind.

“What do I care if Monsieur Pierre is here,” the little princess said suddenly, her pretty face contorted into a tearful grimace; “I have long wanted to say to you, Andrey, why are you so changed to me? What have I done? You go away to the war, you don’t feel for me. Why is it?”

“Liza!” was all Prince Andrey said, but in that one word there was entreaty and menace, and, most of all, conviction that she would herself regret her words; but she went on hurriedly.

“You treat me as though I were ill, or a child. I see it all. You weren’t like this six months ago.”

“Liza, I beg you to be silent,” said Prince Andrey, still more expressively.

Pierre, who had been growing more and more agitated during this conversation, got up and went to the princess. He seemed unable to endure the sight of her tears, and was ready to weep himself.

“Please don’t distress yourself, princess. You only fancy that because …I assure you, I’ve felt so myself…because…through…oh, excuse me, an outsider has no business…Oh, don’t distress yourself…goodbye.”

Prince Andrey held his hand and stopped him.

“No, stay a little, Pierre. The princess is so good, she would not wish to deprive me of the pleasure of spending an evening with you.”

“No, he thinks of nothing but himself,” the princess declared, not attempting to check her tears of anger.

“Liza,” said Prince Andrey drily, raising his voice to a pitch that showed his patience was exhausted.

All at once the angry squirrel expression of the princess’s lovely little face changed to an attractive look of terror that awakened sympathy. She glanced from under her brows with lovely eyes at her husband, and her face wore the timorous, deprecating look of a dog when it faintly but rapidly wags its tail in penitence.

Mon Dieu! mon Dieu!” murmured the princess, and holding her gown with one hand, she went to her husband and kissed him on the forehead.

“Good-night, Liza,” said Prince Andrey, getting up and kissing her hand courteously, as though she were a stranger.

The friends were silent. Neither of them began to talk. Pierre looked at Prince Andrey; Prince Andrey rubbed his forehead with his small hand.

“Let us go and have supper,” he said with a sigh, getting up and going to the door.

They went into the elegantly, newly and richly furnished dining-room. Everything from the dinner-napkins to the silver, the china and the glass, wore that peculiar stamp of newness that is seen in the household belongings of newly married couples. In the middle of supper Prince Andrey leaned on his elbow, and like a man who has long had something on his mind, and suddenly resolves on giving it utterance, he began to speak with an expression of nervous irritation which Pierre had never seen in his friend before.

“Never, never marry, my dear fellow; that’s my advice to you; don’t marry till you have faced the fact that you have done all you’re capable of doing, and till you cease to love the woman you have chosen, till you see her plainly, or else you will make a cruel mistake that can never be set right. Marry when you’re

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