away, that pure soul?' Irina interrupted a second time.
'I know nothing,' answered Litvinov. 'I am to see her again. But she will not stay.'
'Ah! bon voyage! '
'No, she will not stay. But I 'm not thinking of her either now, I am thinking of what you said to me, what you have promised me.'
Irina looked up at him from under her eyelids.
'Ungrateful one! aren't you content yet?'
'No, Irina, I 'm not content. You have made me happy, but I 'm not content, and you understand me.'
'That is, I——'
'Yes, you understand me. Remember your words, remember what you wrote to me. I can't share you with others; no, no, I can't consent to the pitiful role of secret lover; not my life alone, this other life too I have flung at your feet, I have renounced everything, I have crushed it all to dust, without compunction and beyond recall; but in return I trust, I firmly believe, that you too will keep your promise, and unite your lot with mine for ever.'
'You want me to run away with you? I am ready. . . .' (Litvinov bent down to her hands in ecstasy.) 'I am ready. I will not go back from my word. But have you yourself thought