“He’s well, he’s well!” Zossimov cried cheerily to greet the people entering. He had been there for about ten minutes already, and was sitting on the same end of the sofa as yesterday. Raskolnikov was sitting on the opposite end, fully dressed and even carefully washed and combed—something that had not happened with him for a long time. The room filled up immediately, but Nastasya still managed to slip in with the visitors and began to listen.
Indeed, Raskolnikov was almost well, especially as compared with yesterday, only he was very pale, distracted, and sullen. Externally, he seemed to resemble a wounded man or a man suffering from some acute physical pain: his brows were knitted, his lips compressed, his eyes inflamed. He spoke little and reluctantly, as if forcing himself or fulfilling a duty, and a certain anxiety showed every now and then in his movements.
All that was lacking was some bandage or gauze wrapping to complete his resemblance to a man with, for example, a painful abscess on his finger, or an injured hand, or something of the sort.
However, even this pale and sullen face brightened momentarily, as if with light, when his mother and sister entered; but this seemed to lend only a more concentrated torment to his expression, in place of the former anguished distraction. The light quickly faded but the torment remained, and Zossimov, observing and studying his patient with all the youthful ardor of a doctor just beginning to get a taste of practice, was surprised to note in him, instead of joy at his family’s arrival, something like a heavy, concealed determination to endure an hour or two of torture that could no longer be avoided. He saw later how almost every word of the ensuing conversation seemed to touch and reopen some wound in his patient; but at the same time he marveled somewhat that yesterday’s monomaniac, who all but flew into a rage at the slightest word, today was able to control himself and keep his feelings hidden.
“Yes, I myself can now see that I am almost well,” Raskolnikov said, kissing his mother and sister affably, at which Pulcheria Alexandrovna immediately beamed, “and I say it not as I did yesterday, “ he added, addressing Razumikhin and giving him a friendly handshake.
“And I even marveled at him today,” began Zossimov, who was glad to see the visitors, because in ten minutes he had already managed to lose the thread of his conversation with his patient. “If it goes on like this, in three or four days things will be just as they were—that is, as they were a month ago, or two…or maybe even three? Because this started and was coming on from way back…eh? Do you admit, now, that you yourself may be to blame?” he added with a cautious smile, as though still fearing to irritate him with something.
“Very likely,” Raskolnikov answered coldly.
“What I’m driving at,” Zossimov went on, with increasing relish, “is that your complete recovery now depends chiefly on you yourself. Since it’s become possible to talk with you, I should like to impress upon you that it is necessary to eliminate the original, so to speak, radical causes that influenced the onset of your ill condition; only then will you be cured; otherwise it will get even worse. I do not know these original causes, but they must be known to you. You are an intelligent man and, of course, have observed yourself. It seems to me that the beginning of your disorder to some extent coincides with your leaving the university. You cannot remain without occupation, and it seems to me, therefore, that hard work and a firmly set goal could be of great help to you.”
“Yes, yes, you’re entirely right. . . I’ll quickly get myself back into the university, and then everything will go…like clockwork.”
Zossimov, who had begun his sage advice partly for effect in front of the ladies, was naturally somewhat taken aback when, glancing at his listener as he finished his speech, he noticed a look of unmistakable derision on his face. However, this lasted only a moment. Pulcheria Alexandrovna began at once thanking Zossimov, especially for last night’s visit to their hotel.
“What? He went to see you during the night, too?” Raskolnikov asked, as if alarmed. “So then you didn’t get any sleep after your journey.”
“Ah, Rodya, it was all only until two o’clock. Dunya and I never go to bed before two, even at home.”
“I, too, don’t know how to thank him,” Raskolnikov continued, frowning suddenly and looking down. “Setting aside the question of money—you will excuse me for mentioning it” (he turned to Zossimov), “I really don’t know how I have deserved such special attention from you. I simply don’t understand…and…and it’s even burdensome to me, because I don’t understand it—I’m speaking frankly with you.”
“Now, don’t get yourself irritated,” Zossimov forced himself to laugh. “Suppose you’re my first patient; well, and our kind, when we’re just starting out in practice, love our first patients like our own children, and some almost fall in love with them. After all, I don’t have such a wealth of patients.”
“Not to mention him,” Raskolnikov added, pointing to Razumikhin, “he, too, has had nothing but insults and trouble from me.”
“Listen to this nonsense! Are you in a sentimental mood today, or what?” Razumikhin exclaimed.
Had he been more perceptive, he would have seen that there was no question here of a sentimental mood, but something even quite the opposite. Avdotya Romanovna noticed it. She was watching her brother closely and anxiously.
“And of you, mama, I don’t even dare to speak,” he went on, as if reciting a lesson learned by heart that morning. “Only today have I been able to realize something of the torment you must have suffered yesterday, waiting here for me to return.” Having said this, he suddenly held out his hand to his sister, silently and with a smile. But this time there was a flash of genuine, unfeigned emotion in his smile. Dunya at once seized the hand he held out to her and pressed it ardently, with joy and gratitude. It was the first time he had addressed her since yesterday’s falling-out. Their mother’s face lit up with rapture and happiness at the sight of this final and wordless reconciliation of brother and sister.
“That’s what I love him for!” whispered Razumikhin, who exaggerated everything, turning energetically on his chair. “These sudden gestures of his! . . .”
“And how well he does it all,” his mother thought to herself. “He has such noble impulses, and how simply, how delicately he has ended yesterday’s misunderstanding with his sister—just by offering her his hand at the right moment and giving her a nice look…And what beautiful eyes he has, what a beautiful face! … He’s even better looking than Dunechka…But, my God, what clothes! How terribly he’s dressed! The errand-boy Vasya, in Afanasy Ivanovich’s shop, is dressed better! … I think I could just rush to him and embrace him, and…weep—but I’m afraid, afraid…he’s so…Lord! He speaks so tenderly now, yet I’m afraid! What am I afraid of? . . .”
“Ah, Rodya,” she suddenly picked up, hurrying to answer his remark, “you wouldn’t believe how unhappy Dunechka and I were…yesterday! Now that everything’s over and done with, and we’re all happy again, I can tell you. Imagine, we came running here to embrace you, almost straight from the train, and that woman—ah, here she is! How do you do, Nastasya! … She suddenly told us you had been in a fever and had just run away from the doctor, out of the house, delirious, and that people had gone running to look for you. You wouldn’t believe how we felt! I could only picture to myself the tragic death of Lieutenant Potanchikov, our acquaintance, your father’s friend—you won’t remember him, Rodya—who ran out in just the same way, also in delirium, and fell into the well in the yard, and they only managed to get him out the next day. And, of course, we exaggerated it even more. We were about to rush and look for Pyotr Petrovich, so that with his help at least. . . because we were alone, completely alone,” she trailed off in a pitiful voice, and suddenly stopped altogether, remembering that it was still rather dangerous to start talking about Pyotr Petrovich, even though “everyone was now completely happy again.”
“Yes, yes…it’s all a pity, of course . . .” Raskolnikov muttered in reply, but with so distracted and almost inattentive an air that Dunya looked at him in amazement.
“What else was I going to say . . .” he continued, making an effort to recall. “Ah, yes: mama, and you, too, Dunechka, please do not think that I did not want to come to you first this morning and was waiting for you to come to me.”
“But what is it, Rodya!” Pulcheria Alexandrovna cried out, also surprised.
“Is he just answering us out of duty, or what?” thought Dunechka. “He’s making peace and asking forgiveness as if he were performing a service or had memorized a lesson.”
“I was about to come as soon as I woke up, but I was delayed by my clothes; last night I forgot to tell her…Nastasya…to wash off that blood…I’ve only just managed to get dressed.”
“Blood! What blood!” Pulcheria Alexandrovna became alarmed.
“Never mind…don’t worry. It was blood from yesterday, when I was wandering around somewhat delirious and came upon a man who had been run over…some official . . .”
“Delirious? But you remember everything,” Razumikhin interrupted.
“That’s true,” Raskolnikov replied, somehow especially carefully, “I remember everything, down to the smallest detail, but try asking me why I did this, or went there, or said that—I’d have a hard time explaining.”
“A phenomenon known only too well,” Zossimov mixed in. “The performance is sometimes masterful, extremely clever, but the control of the actions, their source, is deranged and depends on various morbid impressions. As in a dream.”
“Perhaps it’s even good that he considers me almost crazy,” Raskolnikov thought.
“But healthy people are perhaps no different,” Dunechka observed, looking anxiously at Zossimov.
“Quite a true observation,” the latter replied. “Indeed, in that sense we’re all rather often almost like mad people, only with the slight difference that the ‘sick’ are somewhat madder than we are, so that it’s necessary to draw a line here. And the harmonious man, it’s true, almost doesn’t exist; out of tens, maybe hundreds of thousands, one will be found, and quite a weak specimen at that . . .”
The word “mad,” imprudently dropped by Zossimov, whose favorite subject was running away with him, made everyone wince.
Raskolnikov sat as though he were not paying attention, deep in thought, and with a strange smile on his pale lips. He went on puzzling over something.
“Well, what about this man who was run over? I interrupted you!” Razumikhin hastened to exclaim.
“What?” the other asked, as if waking up. “Ah, yes…so I got stained with blood when I helped carry him into his apartment…Incidentally, mama, I did an unpardonable thing yesterday; I was truly out of my mind. Yesterday I gave all the money you sent me…to his wife…for the funeral. She’s a widow now, consumptive, a pitiful woman…three little orphans, hungry…they have nothing in the house…and there’s yet another daughter…Perhaps you’d have given her the money yourself, if you’d seen…However, I had no right, I admit, especially knowing how hard it was for you to get it. Before helping people, one must first have the right; otherwise— ‘Crevez, chiens, si vous n’êtes pas contents! ‘ “ He laughed. “Right, Dunya?”
“No, not right,” Dunya answered firmly.
“Bah! So you, too…have your notions! . . .” he muttered, looking at her almost with hatred and smiling derisively. “I should have realized it…Well, that’s praiseworthy; it’s better for you…and you’ll come to a certain line, and if you don’t cross it, you’ll be unhappy, and if you do, maybe you’ll be even more unhappy…However, it’s all nonsense!” he added irritably, annoyed at getting involuntarily carried away. “I only wanted to say that I ask your forgiveness, mama,” he concluded sharply and abruptly.
“Ah, Rodya, there’s no need; I’m sure everything you do is wonderful!” his gladdened mother said.
“Don’t be sure,” he said, twisting his mouth into a smile. Silence ensued. There was something tense in this whole conversation, and in the silence, and in the reconciliation, and in the forgiveness, and everyone felt it.
“So they really are afraid of me,” Raskolnikov thought to himself, glancing sullenly at his mother and sister. Indeed, the longer Pulcheria Alexandrovna remained silent, the more timid she became.
“I seemed to love them so much when they weren’t here,” flashed through his head.
“You know, Rodya, Marfa Petrovna died!” Pulcheria Alexandrovna suddenly popped up.
“What Marfa Petrovna?”
“Ah, my God—Marfa Petrovna—Svidrigailov! I wrote you so much about her.”
“A-a-ah, yes, I remember…So she died? Ah, did she?” he suddenly roused himself, as if waking up. “She really died? Of what?”
“Just imagine, it was a sudden death!” Pulcheria Alexandrovna hurried on, encouraged by his curiosity. “And just at the same time as I sent you that letter, even the same day! Imagine, that terrible man seems to have been the cause of her death. They say he gave her a terrible beating!”
“Is that how they were?” he asked, turning to his sister.
“No, quite the opposite. He was always very patient with her, even polite. In many cases he was even too indulgent of her nature, for all those seven years…Somehow he suddenly lost patience.”
“So he’s not so terrible, if he managed to restrain himself for seven years? You seem to be vindicating him, Dunechka?”
“No, no, he’s a terrible man! I can’t even imagine anything more terrible,” Dunya answered, almost with a shudder, and she frowned and lapsed into thought.
“That was in the morning,” Pulcheria Alexandrovna hurriedly continued. “Afterwards she immediately ordered the horses to be harnessed, to go to town right after dinner, because she always used to go to town in such cases; they say she ate dinner with great appetite…”
“In spite of the beating, eh?”
“. . . But then, that was always her…habit; and as soon as she finished dinner, so as not to be late to town, she went straight to the bathhouse…You see, she was taking some sort of bathing cure; they have a cold spring there, and she bathed in it regularly, every day, and as soon as she got into the water, she suddenly had a stroke!”
“Sure enough!” said Zossimov.
“And was it a bad beating?”
“That hardly matters,” Dunya responded.
“Hm! Anyway, mama, why do you bother telling me about such nonsense?” Raskolnikov suddenly said, irritably and as if inadvertently.
“Ah, my friend, I just didn’t know what to talk about,” escaped from Pulcheria Alexandrovna.
“What is it, are you all afraid of me or something?” he said with a twisted smile.
“In fact, it’s true,” said Dunya, looking directly and sternly at her brother. “Mama was so afraid coming up the stairs that she even crossed herself.”
His face became all contorted as if in a spasm.
“Ah, Dunya, stop it! Rodya, please don’t be angry…How could you, Dunya!” Pulcheria Alexandrovna started to say in confusion. “The truth is that as we were coming here, I was dreaming all the way, on the train, of how we would see each other, how we would tell each other everything…and I was so happy that I didn’t even notice the journey! But what am I saying! I’m happy now, too…Dunya, you really shouldn’t! It makes me happy just to see you, Rodya . . .”
“Enough, mama,” he muttered in confusion, pressing her hand without looking at her. “We’ll have time to talk all we want!”
Having said this, he suddenly became confused and turned pale: again that terrible, recent feeling passed like a deathly chill over his soul; again it suddenly became perfectly plain and clear to him that he had just uttered a terrible lie, that not only would he never have the chance to talk all he wanted, but that it was no longer possible for him to talk at all, with anyone, about anything, ever. The impression of this tormenting thought was so strong that for a moment he almost forgot himself entirely; he rose from his place and, without looking at anyone, started out the door.
“What are you doing?” Razumikhin exclaimed, seizing his arm.
He sat down again and began silently looking around him; everyone was looking at him in perplexity.
“But why are you all so dull!” he suddenly cried out, quite unexpectedly. “Say something! What’s the point of sitting here like this! Well, speak! Let’s talk…We got together and don’t open our mouths…So, say something!”
“Thank God! I thought it was going to be the same as yesterday,” Pulcheria Alexandrovna said, crossing herself.
“What is it, Rodya?” Avdotya Romanovna asked mistrustfully.
“Nothing. I just remembered something,” he answered, and suddenly laughed.
“Well, that’s good. At least it was something! Otherwise I’d have thought. . .” Zossimov muttered, rising from the sofa. “However, it’s time I was going; maybe I’ll stop by later…if you’re here . . .”
He made his bows and left.
“What a wonderful man!” Pulcheria Alexandrovna observed.
“Yes, wonderful, excellent, educated, intelligent . . .” Raskolnikov suddenly started saying in a sort of unexpected patter, and with hitherto unusual animation. “I can’t recall where I met him before my illness…I think I did meet him somewhere…And here is another good man!” He motioned towards Razumikhin. “Do you like him, Dunya?” he asked, and for no apparent reason suddenly burst out laughing.
“Very much,” Dunya replied.
“Pah, you’re a real…little swine!” said Razumikhin, frightfully abashed and blushing, and he rose from his chair. Pulcheria Alexandrovna smiled slightly, and Raskolnikov roared with laughter.
“But where are you off to?”
“I also…have to . . .”
“You don’t have to at all; stay here! Zossimov left, so you also have to. Don’t go…What time is it? Twelve already? What a pretty watch you have, Dunya! But why are you all silent again? I’m the only one who keeps talking! . . .”
“It was a present from Marfa Petrovna,” Dunya replied.
“And a very expensive one,” Pulcheria Alexandrovna added.
“Ahh! Look at the size of it—almost too big for a lady.”
“I like it like that,” said Dunya.
Razumikhin thought to himself: “So it’s not from her fiancé,” and for some reason he rejoiced.
“And I thought it was Luzhin’s present,” Raskolnikov remarked.
“No, he hasn’t given Dunya anything yet.”
“Ahh! And do you remember how I was in love, mama, and wanted to get married?” he said suddenly, looking at his mother, who was struck by this unexpected turn and the tone in which he began talking about it.
“Ah, my friend, of course!” Pulcheria Alexandrovna exchanged glances with Dunechka and Razumikhin.
“Hm! Yes! Well, what can I tell you. I don’t even remember much. She was such a sickly girl,” he went on, as if suddenly lapsing into thought again, and looking down, “quite ill; she liked giving alms and kept dreaming of a convent, and once she broke down in tears when she began talking about it; yes, yes…I remember…I remember very well. She was so…homely. Really, I don’t know why I got so attached to her then; I think it was because she was always sick…If she’d been lame or hunchbacked, I think I would have loved her even more . . .” (He smiled pensively.) “It was just…some spring delirium . . .”
“No, it was not just a spring delirium,” Dunechka said animatedly.
He looked with strained attention at his sister, but either did not hear or did not understand her words. Then he rose, deep in thought, went over to his mother, kissed her, returned to his place, and sat down.
“You love her even now!” Pulcheria Alexandrovna said, touched.
“Her? Now? Ah…you mean her! No. It’s all as if in another world now…and so long ago. And everything around seems not to be happening here . . .”
He looked at them attentively.
“And you, too…it’s as if I were looking at you from a thousand miles away…Besides, devil knows why we’re talking about it! What’s the point of asking questions?” he added in vexation, and fell silent, biting his nails and lapsing into thought again.
“What an awful apartment you have, Rodya; like a coffin,” Pulcheria Alexandrovna said suddenly, breaking the heavy silence. “I’m sure it’s half on account of this apartment that you’ve become so melancholic.”
“Apartment? . . .” he replied distractedly. “Yes, the apartment contributed a lot. . . I’ve thought about that myself…But if you knew what a strange thought you just said, mama,” he added suddenly, with a strange smirk.
A little longer and this company, this family, after their three-year separation, this familial tone of conversation, together with the complete impossibility of talking about anything at all, would finally become decidedly unbearable to him. There was, however, one pressing matter that absolutely had to be resolved that day, one way or the other—so he had resolved when he woke up in the morning. He was glad, now, to have this matter as a way out.
“Listen, Dunya,” he began seriously and dryly, “I must, of course, ask your forgiveness for yesterday, but I consider it my duty to remind you again that I will not renounce my main point. It’s either me or Luzhin. I may be vile, but you must not be. One of us is enough. And if you marry Luzhin, I will immediately cease to regard you as my sister.”
“Rodya, Rodya! But this is all the same as yesterday,” Pulcheria Alexandrovna exclaimed ruefully. “And why do you keep calling yourself vile—I can’t bear it! It was the same yesterday . . .”
“Brother,” Dunya replied firmly and also dryly, “there is a mistake on your part in all this. I thought it over during the night and found the mistake. The point is that you seem to think I’m sacrificing myself to someone and for someone. That is not so at all. I am marrying simply for myself, because things are hard for me; of course, I shall be glad if I also manage to be of use to my family, but that is not the main motive for my determination . . .”
“She’s lying!” he thought to himself, biting his nails in anger. “The proud thing! She doesn’t want to admit that she’d like playing the benefactress! Oh, base characters! They love, and it comes out like hate…Oh, how I…hate them all!”
“In short, I am marrying Pyotr Petrovich,” Dunechka went on, “because I prefer the lesser of two evils. I intend honestly to fulfill all that he expects of me, and therefore I am not deceiving him…Why did you just smile like that?”
She, too, became flushed, and wrath shone in her eyes.
“You’ll fulfill everything?” he asked, grinning venomously.
“Up to a point. Both the manner and the form of Pyotr Petrovich’s proposal showed me at once what he requires. He may, of course, value himself too highly, but I hope that he also values me…Why are you laughing again?”
“And why are you blushing again? You’re lying, sister, you’re lying on purpose, solely out of your woman’s stubbornness, just to insist on your point before me…You cannot respect Luzhin—I’ve seen him and talked with him. Which means you’re selling yourself for money, and that means that in any case you’re acting basely, and I’m glad you’re at least able to blush!”
“It’s not true, I’m not lying! . . .” Dunechka cried out, losing all her composure. “I won’t marry him unless I’m convinced that he values and appreciates me; I won’t marry him unless I’m convinced that I can respect him. Fortunately, I can be convinced of that quite certainly, and even today. And such a marriage is not vile, as you say! And if you were right, and I had really made up my mind to do something vile, isn’t it merciless on your part to talk to me that way? Why do you demand a heroism of me that you may not even have in yourself? That is despotism; that is coercion! If I ruin anyone, it will only be myself…I haven’t gone and put a knife into anyone yet! … Why are you looking at me like that? Why did you get so pale? Rodya, what’s wrong? Rodya, dear!”
“Lord! She’s made him faint!” Pulcheria Alexandrovna cried out.
“No, no…nonsense…it’s nothing! … I just felt a little dizzy. Not faint at all…You and your faints! … Hm! yes…what was I going to say? Ah, yes: how could you be convinced today that you can respect him, and that he…values you, or however you put it? I think you said something about today? Or did I not hear right?”
“Mama, show my brother Pyotr Petrovich’s letter,” said Dunechka.
Pulcheria Alexandrovna handed over the letter with trembling hands. He took it with great curiosity. But before unfolding it, he suddenly looked at Dunya somehow with surprise.
“Strange,” he said slowly, as if suddenly struck by a new thought, “why am I making such a fuss? Why all this outcry? Go and marry whomever you like!”
He spoke as if to himself, though he said it aloud, and looked at his sister for some time as if in bewilderment.
Finally he unfolded the letter, still with an expression of some strange surprise; then he began reading slowly and attentively, and read it twice. Pulcheria Alexandrovna was especially uneasy, and everyone also expected something special.
“It surprises me,” he began, after some reflection, handing the letter back to his mother, but without addressing anyone in particular, “he handles cases, he’s a lawyer, and his conversation is so…pretentious— yet his writing is quite illiterate.”
Everyone stirred; this was not what they were expecting.
“But they all write like that,” Razumikhin observed abruptly.
“So you’ve read it?”
“We showed him, Rodya, we…asked his advice,” Pulcheria Alexandrovna began, embarrassed.
“It’s legal style, as a matter of fact,” Razumikhin interrupted, “legal documents are still written that way.”
“Legal? Yes, precisely legal, businesslike…Not so very illiterate, and not too literary either—a business style!”
“Pyotr Petrovich makes it no secret that he had to scrape up pennies for his education, and even boasts of having made his own way in life,” Avdotya Romanovna remarked, somewhat offended by her brother’s new tone.
“Let him boast, he has some reason—I don’t deny that. You seem to be offended, sister, that out of the entire letter I drew such a frivolous observation, and you think I began speaking of such trifles on purpose, in my vexation, just to put on an act in front of you. On the contrary, a certain observation to do with style occurred to me, which is not at all irrelevant in the present case. There is this one phrase: ‘you will have only yourself to blame’—very significantly and clearly put; and then there is the threat that he will leave at once if I come. This threat to leave is the same as a threat to abandon you both if you disobey, and to abandon you now, when he has already brought you to Petersburg. Now, tell me: can such a phrase from Luzhin be as offensive as it would be if he had written it” (he pointed to Razumikhin), “or Zossimov, or any one of us?”
“N-no,” Dunechka answered, perking up, “I understood very well that it was too naively expressed, and that he was perhaps simply not a very skillful writer…That’s good reasoning, brother. I didn’t even expect . . .”
“It’s put in a legal manner, there’s no other way to put it legally, and it came out coarser than he may have wanted. However, I must disappoint you somewhat: there is one other expression in this letter that is a bit of a slander against me, and rather a low one. Yesterday I gave money to a consumptive and broken-hearted widow, not ‘on the pretext of a funeral,’ but simply for the funeral, and I handed it not to the daughter—a girl, as he writes, ‘of notorious behavior’ (whom I saw yesterday for the first time in my life)—but precisely to the widow. In all this I see an overly hasty desire to sully me and make me quarrel with you. Again, he expresses himself legalistically—that is, revealing his purpose too plainly, and with rather naive haste. He’s an intelligent man, but it takes something more than intelligence to act intelligently. All this portrays the man, and…I don’t think he values you very much. I say this in admonition, because I sincerely wish you well…”
Dunechka did not reply; her decision had already been made, and she was only waiting for that evening.
“Well, what have you decided, Rodya?” asked Pulcheria Alexandrovna, troubled even more than before by his sudden, new businesslike tone of voice.
“What do you mean—’decided’?”
“But Pyotr Petrovich writes here that you mustn’t be with us in the evening, and that he will leave…if you come. So, will you…come?”
“That is, of course, not up to me to decide, but up to you, first, if such a demand from Pyotr Petrovich does not offend you, and, second, up to Dunya, if she also is not offended. I will do as you think best,” he added dryly.
“Dunechka has already decided, and I agree with her completely,” Pulcheria Alexandrovna hastened to put in.
“I decided to ask you, Rodya, to ask you earnestly to join us at this meeting without fail,” said Dunya. “Will you come?”
“I ask you, too, to join us at eight o’clock,” she turned to Razumikhin. “Mama, I’m inviting him, too.”
“That’s fine, Dunechka. Whatever you all decide,” Pulcheria Alexandrovna added, “so let it be. And it’s easier for me; I don’t like lying and pretending; better to tell the whole truth…and let Pyotr Petrovich be angry if he chooses!”
 “Drop dead, dogs, if you don’t like it!” (French).