Александр Куприн. The Duel
Отрывок из книги
THE soldiers marched home to their quarters in platoon order. The square was deserted. Romashov stood hesitating for a moment at the causeway. It was not the first time during the year and a half he had been in the service he had experienced that painful feeling of loneliness, of being lost among strangers either hostile or indifferent, or that distressful hesitation as to where one shall spend the evening. To go home or spend the evening at the officers’ mess was equally distasteful to him. At the latter place, at that time of day, there was hardly a soul, at most a couple of ensigns who, whilst they drank ale and smoked to excess and indulged in as many oaths and unseemly words as possible, played pyramids in the wretched little narrow billiard-room; in addition to all this, the horrible smell of food pervading all the rooms.
“I shall go down to the railway-station,” said Romashov at last. “That will be something to do.”
Shurochka looked at him roguishly from her half-closed eyes, and a turbulent curl got loose and fell over her forehead.
“Romochka, how funny you are!” she twittered in a rather thin, girlish voice. The sub-lieutenant blushed and thought according to his wont —