“The most difficult thing is the subjection of man’s will to the law of God,” said the voice. “Simplicity is the submission to God; there is no escaping from Him. And they are simple. They do not talk, but act. A word uttered is silver, but unuttered is golden. No one can be master of anything while he fears death. And all things belong to him who fears it not. If it were not for suffering, a man would know not his limits, would know not himself. The hardest thing” (Pierre thought or heard in his dream) “is to know how to unite in one’s soul the significance of the whole. To unite the whole?” Pierre said to himself. “No, not to unite. One cannot unite one’s thoughts, but to harness together all those ideas, that’s what’s wanted. Yes, one must harness together, harness together,” Pierre repeated to himself with a thrill of ecstasy, feeling that those words, and only those words, expressed what he wanted to express, and solved the whole problem fretting him.

“Yes, one must harness together; it’s time to harness…”

“We want to harness the horses; it’s time to harness the horses, your excellency! Your excellency,” some voice was repeating, “we want to harness the horses; it’s time…”

It was the groom waking Pierre. The sun was shining full in Pierre’s face. He glanced at the dirty tavern yard; at the well in the middle of it soldiers were watering their thin horses; and waggons were moving out of the gate.

He turned away with repugnance, and shutting his eyes, made haste to huddle up again on the seat of the carriage. “No, I don’t want that; I don’t want to see and understand that; I want to understand what was revealed to me in my sleep. Another second and I should have understood it all. But what am I to do? To harness, but how to harness all together?” And Pierre felt with horror that the whole meaning of what he had seen and thought in his dream had slipped away.

The groom, the coachman, and the porter told Pierre that an officer had come with the news that the French were advancing on Mozhaisk and our troops were retreating.

Pierre got up, and ordering the carriage to be got out and to drive after him, crossed the town on foot.

The troops were marching out, leaving tens of thousands of wounded behind. The wounded could be seen at the windows of the houses, and were crowding the yards and streets. Screams, oaths, and blows could be heard in the streets about the carts which were to carry away the wounded. Pierre put his carriage at the service of a wounded general of his acquaintance, and drove with him to Moscow. On the way he was told of the death of his brother-in-law, Anatole, and of the death of Prince Andrey.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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