Pavlusha grew up, began driving over to call on Ivan Andreevitch on his own account, fell in love with Olga Ivanovna, and offered her his hand and heart not to her personally, but to her benefactors. Her benefactors gave their consent. They never even thought of asking Olga Ivanovna whether she liked Rogatchov.
What'll Afanasey Lukitch say? Why, he'll drive us all out of the light of day.... Why are you fellows standing still? Take the uninvited guest in hand and show him out of the house, so that not a trace be left of him. 'Rogatchov! Vassily Ivanovitch shouted menacingly. 'You are crazy, Efimovna, you are shaming me, come, come... said Pavel Afanasievitch.
In the summer Ivan Andreevitch died; the wedding was deferred till the following spring. In the winter Vassily Ivanovitch arrived. Rogatchov was presented to him; he received him coldly and contemptuously, and as time went on, he, so alarmed him by his haughty behaviour that poor Rogatchov trembled like a leaf at the very sight of him, was tongue-tied and smiled nervously.
'Listen! shouted Lutchinov, 'you drive me out of patience.... Either give me your word to marry her at once, or fight...or I'll thrash you with my cane like a coward, do you understand? 'Come into the garden, Rogatchov answered through his teeth.
Vassily had begun to explain to her the inevitableness of her parting from him and marrying Rogatchov. Olga Ivanovna looked at him in dumb horror. Vassily talked in a cool, business-like, practical way, blamed himself, expressed his regret, but concluded all his remarks with the following words: 'There's no going back on the past; we've got to act.
'Good God!... You'll send me out of my mind.... What do you mean, explain, for God's sake! Vassily bent down and whispered something in his ear. Rogatchov cried out, 'What!...!? Vassily stamped. 'Olga Ivanovna? Olga?... 'Yes... your betrothed... 'My betrothed... Vassily Ivanovitch... she... she... Why, I never wish to see her again, cried Pavel Afanasievitch. 'Good-bye to her for ever!
'Excuse me, excuse me, objected Rogatchov, not rising from his seat; 'you order me. I sought Olga Ivanovna's hand of myself and there's no need to give me orders.... I confess, Vassily Ivanovitch, I don't quite understand you. 'You don't understand me? 'No, really, I don't understand you. 'Do you give me your word to marry her to-morrow?
His own serfs did not obey him, and would sometimes all go off, down to the least of them, and leave poor Rogatchov without any dinner... but nothing could trouble the peace of his soul. From his childhood he had been stout and indolent, had never been in the government service, and was fond of going to church and singing in the choir.
'You're a nobleman, you're a man of honour, so you'll be so good as to fight with me. 'Vassily Ivanovitch! 'You are frightened, I think, Mr. Rogatchov. 'I'm not in the least frightened, Vassily Ivanovitch. You thought you would frighten me, Vassily Ivanovitch.
Vassily once almost annihilated him altogether by making him a bet, that he, Rogatchov, was not able to stop smiling. Poor Pavel Afanasievitch almost cried with, embarrassment, but actually! a smile, a stupid, nervous smile refused to leave his perspiring face! Vassily toyed deliberately with the ends of his neckerchief, and looked at him with supreme contempt.