Of Human Bondage  人性的枷锁

One day Philip, with the bluntness of his age, asked him if it was true he had been with Garibaldi. The old man did not seem to attach any importance to the question. He answered quite quietly in as low a voice as usual.

一天,菲利普带着他那种年纪所特有的愣劲,问起他过去是否真的同加里波迪在一起呆过。那老头似乎一点儿没把这个问题当作一回事。他用平日里的那种低沉声调,十分平静地应答了一声:

‘Oui, monsieur.’

"Oui Monsieur."

‘They say you were in the Commune?’

"听别人说,你参加过公社。"

‘Do they? Shall we get on with our work?’

"别人这么说的吗?让我们开始上课吧,呃"

He held the book open and Philip, intimidated, began to translate the passage he had prepared.

他把书本翻开,菲利普战战兢兢地开始翻译那段他已准备好的课文。

One day Monsieur Ducroz seemed to be in great pain. He had been scarcely able to drag himself up the many stairs to Philip’s room: and when he arrived sat down heavily, his sallow face drawn, with beads of sweat on his forehead, trying to recover himself.

有一天,迪克罗先生好像受到巨大的疼痛折磨,几乎连那几级楼梯也爬不动,一进菲利普的屋就沉沉地往椅子上一坐,想歇歇喘口气,那张灰黄色的脸歪扭着,额头上沁出一颗颗汗珠。

‘I’m afraid you’re ill,’ said Philip.

"恐怕您病了吧,"菲利普说。

‘It’s of no consequence.’

"没关系。"

But Philip saw that he was suffering, and at the end of the hour asked whether he would not prefer to give no more lessons till he was better.

但是菲利普看得出他病得不轻,等上完课、菲利普问他是否最好歇几天,等身体好些再继续上课。

‘No,’ said the old man, in his even low voice. ‘I prefer to go on while I am able.’

"不,"老头说,声调还是那么平稳、低沉,"我身体还行,我愿意继续教下去。"

Philip, morbidly nervous when he had to make any reference to money, reddened.

菲利普在不得不提及钱的事儿时,心里总是紧得发慌,这会儿他脸涨得通红。

‘But it won’t make any difference to you,’ he said. ‘I’ll pay for the lessons just the same. If you wouldn’t mind I’d like to give you the money for next week in advance.’

"但这反正对您没什么影响,"菲利普说,"我课金还是照付不误。要是您不介意,我想现在就把下星期的课金预付给您。"

Monsieur Ducroz charged eighteen pence an hour. Philip took a ten-mark piece out of his pocket and shyly put it on the table. He could not bring himself to offer it as if the old man were a beggar.

迪克罗先生的课金,一小时十八个便士。菲利普从口袋里掏出一枚十马克的硬币,很难为情地把它放在桌子上。他怎么能把钱塞到老头手里呢,好像他是个乞丐似的。

‘In that case I think I won’t come again till I’m better.’ He took the coin and, without anything more than the elaborate bow with which he always took his leave, went out.

"既然这样,我想我就等身体好些再来吧。"他收下了那枚硬币,还是问往常一样,向菲利普一躬到底之后就走了出去,再没有什么别的表示。

‘Bonjour, monsieur.’

"Bonjour,Monsieur."

Philip was vaguely disappointed. Thinking he had done a generous thing, he had expected that Monsieur Ducroz would overwhelm him with expressions of gratitude. He was taken aback to find that the old teacher accepted the present as though it were his due. He was so young, he did not realise how much less is the sense of obligation in those who receive favours than in those who grant them. Monsieur Ducroz appeared again five or six days later. He tottered a little more and was very weak, but seemed to have overcome the severity of the attack. He was no more communicative than he had been before. He remained mysterious, aloof, and dirty. He made no reference to his illness till after the lesson: and then, just as he was leaving, at the door, which he held open, he paused. He hesitated, as though to speak were difficult.

菲利普隐隐感到有点失望。想想自己如此慷慨解囊,迪克罗先生总该对他千恩万谢,感激涕零吧,哪知这位年迈的教师,收下这笔赠金就像是理所当然似的,菲利普颇感意外。他年纪还轻,不懂得人情世故。实际上,受惠者的知恩报答心理,要比施惠者的施恩图报心理淡薄得多。五六大之后,迪克罗先生又来了,步履越发踉跄,身体显得很衰弱,不过重病一场现在总算挺过来了。他仍旧像过去那样沉默寡言,还是那么神秘、孤僻、邋遢。一直等到上完了课,他才提到自己生病的事。接着,他起身告辞,就在他打开房门的时候,突然在门口刹住了脚。他犹豫着,仿佛有什么难言之隐似的。

‘If it hadn’t been for the money you gave me I should have starved. It was all I had to live on.’

"要不是您给我的那点钱,我早就饿死了。我全靠那点钱过日子。"

He made his solemn, obsequious bow, and went out. Philip felt a little lump in his throat. He seemed to realise in a fashion the hopeless bitterness of the old man’s struggle, and how hard life was for him when to himself it was so pleasant.

他庄重而巴结地鞠了一躬,走出房去。菲利普一阵心酸,喉咙口哽住了。他似乎多少有点明白过来,这位老人是在绝望的痛苦中挣扎着,就在菲利普觉着生活如此美好的时候,生活对这位老人来说却是多么艰难。