The Da Vinci Code  达芬奇密码

As the church's conservatrice d'affaires, Sister Sandrine was responsible for overseeing all nonreligious aspects of church operations—general maintenance, hiring support staff and guides, securing the building after hours, and ordering supplies like communion wine and wafers.

今夜,刺耳的电话铃声突然把熟睡在小床上的她惊醒。她有气无力地拿起听筒。"我是桑德琳修女。这是圣叙尔皮斯教堂。""你好,桑德琳。"那人用法语说。

Tonight, asleep in her small bed, she awoke to the shrill of her telephone. Tiredly, she lifted the receiver.

桑德琳坐了起来。几点钟了?虽然她听出了是她老板的声音,但十五年来他从未在夜间打电话把她叫醒过。那位修道院院长非常虔诚,弥撒过后立即回家睡觉。

"Soeur Sandrine. Eglise Saint-Sulpice."

"对不起把你吵醒了,桑德琳。"修道院院长说。从声音听他本人也有些昏头昏脑,心烦意乱。"我得请你帮个忙,我刚刚接到美国一位颇有影响的主教的电话。你可能知道他,曼努埃尔。阿林加洛沙,知道吗?"

"Hello, Sister," the man said in French.

"是天主事工会主教吗?"教会中人谁会不知道他?阿林加洛沙保守的教派近年来愈来愈有势力。1982 年教皇约翰。保罗二世出人意料地将天主事工会提升为自己的个人直辖教派,正式恩准了他们所有的行为。从此,他们的地位突然飙升了许多。令人起疑的是,天主事工会地位提升的这一年,正是这个富有的教派被指控划拨给通常被称作梵蒂冈银行的梵蒂冈宗教著作研究院十亿美元,并将其从破产的窘境中挽救出来的那一年。第二件让人蹙眉的事是,教皇把天主事工会创始人圣徒化的过程推上了"快车道",把获得"圣徒"的时限从通常的一个世纪缩短至二十年。桑德琳禁不住要怀疑天主事工会为什么在罗马有这么高的地位,但一般人是不与神圣的罗马教皇发生龃龉的。

Sister Sandrine sat up. What time is it? Although she recognized her boss's voice, in fifteen years she had never been awoken by him. The abbé was a deeply pious man who went home to bed immediately after mass.

"阿林加洛沙主教打电话要我帮忙。"修道院院长声音紧张地告诉她说。"他的一个手下今晚到巴黎……"桑德琳听着这个古怪的请求,感到丈二和尚摸不着头脑。"对不起,你是说这个天主事工会客人等天亮也等不及?"

"I apologize if I have awoken you, Sister," the abbé said, his own voice sounding groggy and on edge. "I have a favor to ask of you. I just received a call from an influential American bishop. Perhaps you know him? Manuel Aringarosa?"

"恐怕等不及。他的飞机很早就起飞了。他正期待着见到圣叙尔皮斯教堂。"

"The head of Opus Dei?" Of course I know of him. Who in the Church doesn't? Aringarosa's conservative prelature had grown powerful in recent years. Their ascension to grace was jump-started in 1982 when Pope John Paul II unexpectedly elevated them to a "personal prelature of the Pope," officially sanctioning all of their practices. Suspiciously, Opus Dei's elevation occurred the same year the wealthy sect allegedly had transferred almost one billion dollars into the Vatican's Institute for Religious Works—commonly known as the Vatican Bank—bailing it out of an embarrassing bankruptcy. In a second maneuver that raised eyebrows, the Pope placed the founder of Opus Dei on the "fast track" for sainthood, accelerating an often century-long waiting period for canonization to a mere twenty years. Sister Sandrine could not help but feel that Opus Dei's good standing in Rome was suspect, but one did not argue with the Holy See.

"但是白天看教堂要有意思得多。太阳的光线透过眼洞窗照射进来,逐渐倾斜的阴影落在圭表上,这些才是使圣叙尔皮斯教堂与众不同之处呀。""桑德琳,这我知道,就算你帮我私人一个忙,今晚让他进去。他可能差不多一点钟到。也就是二十分钟后。"修女桑德琳蹙起眉头。"当然。我很乐意。"修道院院长对她表示了感谢,挂上了电话。

"Bishop Aringarosa called to ask me a favor," the abbé told her, his voice nervous. "One of his numeraries is in Paris tonight...."

桑德琳还是疑惑不解。她又在暖和的被窝里躺了一会儿,同时又尽力赶走睡意。她六十五岁的身体不如从前醒得快,虽然今晚的电话无疑已唤醒了她的感官。天主事工会一直令她心里不舒服。且不说这个教派固守着肉体惩罚的秘密仪式,他们对女人的看法充其量也只是中世纪的。她曾非常吃惊地了解到男会员在作弥撒时,女会员得被迫无偿地为他清洁住所;女人睡在硬木地板上,而男人却有干草床垫;女人被迫做额外的肉体惩罚--都是为了抵赎原罪。似乎夏娃在智慧树上咬的那一口成了女人注定要永远偿还的债务。令人伤心的是,虽然世界上大多数天主教堂都朝着尊重妇女权力的正确方向发展,而天主事工会却威胁要将这趋势逆转过来。即使有这些想法,修女桑德琳还是接受了命令。

As Sister Sandrine listened to the odd request, she felt a deepening confusion. "I'm sorry, you say this visiting Opus Dei numerary cannot wait until morning?"

她抬腿下床,慢慢站起来,光着脚踩在鞋里冰冷的石头上,觉得刺骨的凉。这冷意沿着她的身体上升,一种突如其来的恐惧感向她袭来。

"I'm afraid not. His plane leaves very early. He has always dreamed of seeing Saint-Sulpice."

女人的直觉吗?

"But the church is far more interesting by day. The sun's rays through the oculus, the graduated shadows on the gnomon, this is what makes Saint-Sulpice unique."

作为上帝的信徒,修女桑德琳已经学会从自己灵魂的冷静的声音中找到安宁。但今夜,那些声音全没了,像她周围空空的教堂一样寂静。

"Sister, I agree, and yet I would consider it a personal favor if you could let him in tonight. He can be there at... say one o'clock? That's in twenty minutes."

Sister Sandrine frowned. "Of course. It would be my pleasure."

The abbé thanked her and hung up.

Puzzled, Sister Sandrine remained a moment in the warmth of her bed, trying to shake off the cobwebs of sleep. Her sixty-year-old body did not awake as fast as it used to, although tonight's phone call had certainly roused her senses. Opus Dei had always made her uneasy. Beyond the prelature's adherence to the arcane ritual of corporal mortification, their views on women were medieval at best. She had been shocked to learn that female numeraries were forced to clean the men's residence halls for no pay while the men were at mass; women slept on hardwood floors, while the men had straw mats; and women were forced to endure additional requirements of corporal mortification... all as added penance for original sin. It seemed Eve's bite from the apple of knowledge was a debt women were doomed to pay for eternity. Sadly, while most of the Catholic Church was gradually moving in the right direction with respect to women's rights, Opus Dei threatened to reverse the progress. Even so, Sister Sandrine had her orders.

Swinging her legs off the bed, she stood slowly, chilled by the cold stone on the soles of her bare feet. As the chill rose through her flesh, she felt an unexpected apprehension.

Women's intuition?

A follower of God, Sister Sandrine had learned to find peace in the calming voices of her own soul. Tonight, however, those voices were as silent as the empty church around her.