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suddenly felt a pang, as though he were preparing to pronounce his own sentence on himself. 'It only remains for me to hope that you will not remember evil against me, and . . . and that if we ever——'

Irina again cut him short.

'Wait a little, Grigory Mihalitch, don't say good-bye to me yet. That would be too hurried.'

Something wavered in Litvinov, but the burning pain broke out again and with redoubled violence in his heart.

'But I can't stay,' he cried. 'What for? Why prolong this torture?'

'Don't say good-bye to me yet,' repeated Irina. 'I must see you once more. . . . Another such dumb parting as in Moscow again——no, I don't want that. You can go now, but you must promise me, give me your word of honour that you won't go away without seeing me once more.'

'You wish that?'

'I insist on it. If you go away without saying good-bye to me, I shall never forgive it, do you hear, never! Strange!' she added as though to herself, 'I cannot persuade myself that I am in Baden. . . . I keep feeling that I am in Moscow. . . . Go now.'

Litvinov got up.