Monday, February 15, 2010

Volume I, Book I, Chapter XXI

Pierre's an orphan. It happens. Bezukhov dies.

There is some wrangling and excitement, and an honest-to-god tug of war for the will between and Anna and Catiche (which must mean "bitter Princess" in Russian). Catiche keeps trying to go into the room and get the Count to denounce it, obviously, and finally when she drops it, Anna picks it up and runs into the bedroom, followed closely by Catiche and Vassily.

Since we're from Pierre's POV, next is Catiche coming back out, saying "You've been waiting for this" then bursting into sobs, and then Vassily coming out and bursting into sobs after pontificating about the pointlessness of it all. Anna comes out last to tell him that his Father has died. She is crying as well, and tells him to cry as well, but Pierre was glad that nobody could see his face -- he seems to be as flummoxed as before. T really makes him seem simple. Meanwhile, is challenging to tell if Catiche and Vassily are sad from the death or the possible loss of a fortune.

The next morning Anna tells Pierre (completely in French) that he is hopefully the head of a large fortune, to remember his Father's promise to Boris and that if she hadn't been there god know what would have happened. Pierre understood nothing and silently gazed at Anna Mikhailovna, blushing shyly. T says she goes to the Rostov's, tells of how Pierre bravely hid his sorrow, that the last meeting between father and son was so touching she could not recall it without tears, and lastly that she told everyone about what Catiche and Vassily had done, but as a great secret and in a whisper.

I love that last bit. Such a great detail. Telling everyone, but as a secret and in a whisper. Ha. She's quite an engineer. Catiche calls her an Intriguer!, which is a fun accusation, and it's unclear if she poisoned the Count's mind to her and Vassily. It's apparent how conniving they were as well, but she does seem a bit more sympathetic. A complete pro, though, as they all are. It's hard to believe Pierre is that daft. I'm having a bit of an issue with that. One would think he'd have some clue of the world around him, but I guess not. We'll see what's next

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