"This is what I have lived to see," he kept repeating; "these are the thanks I get for serving my masters! An old cur, a swineherd, and it is again I who have caused thy wound! No, my little father, Piotr Andreitch, it is not I, but the d——d monssié who is to blame for it all. It is he who taught thee to flourish iron spits about, and stamp with thy foot, as if by flourishing and stamping one could defend oneself against a bad man! Yes, truly, it was necessary to engage monssié, and waste one's money!"
"But who could have taken the trouble to inform my father of my conduct? The general? He did not seem to care very much about me, and Ivan Kouzmitch had not considered it necessary to report my duel."
I was lost in surmises; my suspicion fell on Shvabrine. He alone could have benefited by such a denunciation, which might possibly have resulted in my removal from the fortress, and my separation from the commandant's family. I went to Maria Ivanovna to tell her all. She met me at the porch.
"What is the matter with you?" said she, on seeing me. "How pale you are!"
"Everything is at an end!" answered I, handing to her my father's letter.
It was now her turn to look pale. Having read it, she returned it with a trembling hand, and said in an agitated voice, "It is not my fate . . . . your parents do not wish to admit me into their family. God's will be done! He knows better what is good for us. There is