The Age of Innocence  纯真年代

Archer was sure that Madame Olenska's decisionhad not been influenced by the change in her financialsituation. He knew the exact figure of the small incomewhich her husband had allowed her at their separation.Without the addition of her grandmother's allowance itwas hardly enough to live on, in any sense known tothe Mingott vocabulary; and now that Medora Manson,who shared her life, had been ruined, such apittance would barely keep the two women clothed andfed. Yet Archer was convinced that Madame Olenskahad not accepted her grandmother's offer from interestedmotives.

阿切尔确信奥兰斯卡夫人的决定并非由于经济状况的变化所致。他知道她丈夫在分手时给她的那一小笔钱的确切数目,在明戈特家的人看来,没有祖母的贴补,靠这点儿钱她无论如何都难以维持生计。既然与她一起生活的梅多拉已经破了产,这样一点点收入几乎难于维持两个女人的衣食。然而阿切尔深信,奥兰斯卡夫人接受祖母的提议决非出于利益的驱动。

She had the heedless generosity and the spasmodicextravagance of persons used to large fortunes, andindifferent to money; but she could go without manythings which her relations considered indispensable,and Mrs. Lovell Mingott and Mrs. Welland had oftenbeen heard to deplore that any one who had enjoyedthe cosmopolitan luxuries of Count Olenski's establishmentsshould care so little about "how things weredone." Moreover, as Archer knew, several months hadpassed since her allowance had been cut off; yet in theinterval she had made no effort to regain her grand-mother's favour. Therefore if she had changed her courseit must be for a different reason.

她具有那些习惯于拥有巨额家产而对金钱却满不在乎的人们的特点:任性随意的慷慨大方,抽风式的奢侈挥霍。但她也能在缺少亲戚们认为是不可或缺的许多东西的条件下生存。洛弗尔·明戈特太太与韦兰太太经常感叹地说,像她这样一个享受过奥兰斯基家那种大都市奢华生活的人,怎么对钱财的事如此不关心。而且据阿切尔所知,对她的补贴已经取消了好几个月,这期间她并没有想方设法重新博取祖母的宠爱。所以,如果说她改变了方针,那一定是另有原因。

He did not have far to seek for that reason. On theway from the ferry she had told him that he and shemust remain apart; but she had said it with her headon his breast. He knew that there was no calculatedcoquetry in her words; she was fighting her fate as hehad fought his, and clinging desperately to her resolvethat they should not break faith with the people whotrusted them. But during the ten days which had elapsedsince her return to New York she had perhaps guessedfrom his silence, and from the fact of his making noattempt to see her, that he was meditating a decisivestep, a step from which there was no turning back. Atthe thought, a sudden fear of her own weakness mighthave seized her, and she might have felt that, after all,it was better to accept the compromise usual in suchcases, and follow the line of least resistance.

这原因他无须到远处去找。就在他们从渡口回家的路上,她曾对他讲他们俩一定得分开,不过她说这话的时候,脑袋是贴在他胸膛上的。他知道她说这些话并不是故意卖弄风情,她跟他一样是在与命运抗争,不顾一切地坚持着自己的决定:决不背弃那些信任他们的人。然而,在她回纽约后10天的时间里,她大概已经从他的沉默中、从他没有设法见她的事实中推测到,他正在筹划一种断然的措施,他将走出不留退路的关键一步。她想到这一点,可能突然对自己的脆弱产生了恐惧,觉得最好还是接受这类情况中常见的妥协方案,采取最省力的办法。

An hour earlier, when he had rung Mrs. Mingott'sbell, Archer had fancied that his path was clear beforehim. He had meant to have a word alone with MadameOlenska, and failing that, to learn from hergrandmother on what day, and by which train, she wasreturning to Washington. In that train he intended tojoin her, and travel with her to Washington, or asmuch farther as she was willing to go. His own fancyinclined to Japan. At any rate she would understand atonce that, wherever she went, he was going. He meantto leave a note for May that should cut off any otheralternative.

一小时之前,在阿切尔拉响明戈特太太家的门铃时,他还以为自己要走的路已经确定无疑。他本来打算单独跟奥兰斯卡夫人说句话,如若不成,也要从她祖母口中探听出她哪一天、坐哪列车回华盛顿去。他打算到车上与她会合,并跟她一起去华盛顿,或者按她的意愿,去更远更远的地方。他本人倾向于去日本。不管怎样,她立即就会明白,无论她到哪里,他都会与她形影相随。他准备给梅留下一封信,以杜绝任何其他的可能。

He had fancied himself not only nerved for thisplunge but eager to take it; yet his first feeling onhearing that the course of events was changed had beenone of relief. Now, however, as he walked home fromMrs. Mingott's, he was conscious of a growing distastefor what lay before him. There was nothing unknownor unfamiliar in the path he was presumably to tread;but when he had trodden it before it was as a free man,who was accountable to no one for his actions, andcould lend himself with an amused detachment to thegame of precautions and prevarications, concealmentsand compliances, that the part required. This procedurewas called "protecting a woman's honour"; andthe best fiction, combined with the after-dinner talk ofhis elders, had long since initiated him into every detailof its code.

在他的想象中,自己不仅有足够的勇气,而且还迫不及待地期望着采取这种断然的行动。然而听说事情进程发生变化之后,他的第一反应却是一种宽慰的感觉。不过此刻,在他从明戈特太太家返回的路上,他对摆在他前面的前景却越来越觉得厌恶。在他可能要走的道路上没有任何新奇的东西,只不过他以前走上这条路时还是个无牵无挂的男人,自己的行为无须对任何人负责,并且可以自得其乐地超然于游戏所要求的防范与推诿、躲藏与顺从。那种行为被称作“保护女人名誉”,这一绝妙的谎言,连同长辈们饭后的闲谈,早已将规则详尽地灌输给了他。

Now he saw the matter in a new light, and his partin it seemed singularly diminished. It was, in fact, thatwhich, with a secret fatuity, he had watched Mrs.Thorley Rushworth play toward a fond and unperceivinghusband: a smiling, bantering, humouring, watchfuland incessant lie. A lie by day, a lie by night, a lie inevery touch and every look; a lie in every caress andevery quarrel; a lie in every word and in every silence.

现在他以新的眼光看待这件事,他个人在其中扮演的角色似乎就无足轻重了。事实上,他曾经自以为是地暗中观察过托雷·拉什沃斯太太对那位痴情的、没有眼力的丈夫的表演:那是一种含笑的、挑逗的、诙谐的、提防的、持续不断的欺诈——白天欺诈,晚上欺诈,爱也是欺诈,吵也是欺诈,一举一动、一言一行——全都是欺诈。

It was easier, and less dastardly on the whole, for awife to play such a part toward her husband. A woman'sstandard of truthfulness was tacitly held to belower: she was the subject creature, and versed in thearts of the enslaved. Then she could always plead moodsand nerves, and the right not to be held too strictly toaccount; and even in the most strait-laced societies thelaugh was always against the husband.

一位妻子对丈夫扮演这种角色还是比较轻松的,总体看来也算不上卑劣。对于女人的忠诚,人们心照不宣地将标准放得较低,她们是附属品,谙熟被奴役者的阴谋。于是她们总是可以从心境、情绪中找到借口,有权不承担严格的责任。即使在最拘泥的上流社会里,嘲笑也总是针对着丈夫们的。

But in Archer's little world no one laughed at a wifedeceived, and a certain measure of contempt wasattached to men who continued their philandering aftermarriage. In the rotation of crops there was a recognisedseason for wild oats; but they were not to be sownmore than once.

而在阿切尔的小圈子里,没有人嘲笑受骗的妻子,而且,对于婚后继续追逐女性的男人,都给予一定程度的蔑视。在男人一生中有一段得到默许的拈花惹草的时期,但那种事不得超过一次。

Archer had always shared this view: in his heart hethought Lefferts despicable. But to love Ellen Olenskawas not to become a man like Lefferts: for the firsttime Archer found himself face to face with the dreadargument of the individual case. Ellen Olenska was likeno other woman, he was like no other man: theirsituation, therefore, resembled no one else's, and theywere answerable to no tribunal but that of their ownjudgment.

阿切尔一贯赞同这种观点,在他心目中莱弗茨是个卑鄙小人。然而,爱上埃伦·奥兰斯卡却不等于变成莱弗茨那样的人。破天荒第一次,阿切尔发现自己面对 “各人有各人的情况”这一讨厌的论点。埃伦·奥兰斯卡不同于任何女人,他也不同于任何男人,因此,他们的情况与任何人都不同,除了他们自己的判断,他们不对任何裁决负责。

Yes, but in ten minutes more he would be mountinghis own doorstep; and there were May, and habit, andhonour, and all the old decencies that he and his peoplehad always believed in . . .

话虽这么说,然而再过10分钟,他就要踏上自己的门阶,那里有梅、有习俗、有名誉,以及他与他周围的人们一贯信奉的所有体面……

At his corner he hesitated, and then walked on downFifth Avenue.

他在转弯处犹豫了一番,然后沿第五大街向前走去。

Ahead of him, in the winter night, loomed a big unlithouse. As he drew near he thought how often he hadseen it blazing with lights, its steps awninged and carpeted,and carriages waiting in double line to draw upat the curbstone. It was in the conservatory that stretchedits dead-black bulk down the side street that he hadtaken his first kiss from May; it was under the myriadcandles of the ball-room that he had seen her appear,tall and silver-shining as a young Diana.

在他的前方,冬季的黑夜中朦胧现出一幢没有灯光的大宅子。他走近宅子时心想,过去他有多少次见过它的灯火辉煌啊。那时,它的门阶铺着地毯,上方搭起凉棚,马车排成双行等待拴停在栏石上。就是在沿人行道的那个阴沉沉的黑色大温室里,阿切尔得到了梅的第一个吻。他就是在舞厅的一片烛光底下看见她露面的,颀长的身材,周身银光闪闪,宛如一位小狄安娜女神。

Now the house was as dark as the grave, except for afaint flare of gas in the basement, and a light in oneupstairs room where the blind had not been lowered.As Archer reached the corner he saw that the carriagestanding at the door was Mrs. Manson Mingott's. Whatan opportunity for Sillerton Jackson, if he should chanceto pass! Archer had been greatly moved by old Catherine'saccount of Madame Olenska's attitude towardMrs. Beaufort; it made the righteous reprobation ofNew York seem like a passing by on the other side. Buthe knew well enough what construction the clubs anddrawing-rooms would put on Ellen Olenska's visits toher cousin.

如今这宅子像坟墓般一片漆黑,只有地下室里闪烁着暗淡的煤气灯光,楼上也只有一个没有放下百叶窗的房间亮着灯。阿切尔走到墙角跟前,发现停在门口的马车是曼森·明戈特太太的。假如西勒顿·杰克逊碰巧路过这儿,这对他该是多好的机会啊!老凯瑟琳讲述的奥兰斯卡夫人对博福特太太的态度曾让阿切尔深为感动,它使得纽约社会的正义谴责显得格外无情。不过,他深知俱乐部与客厅里的那些人将会就奥兰斯卡对堂姊的拜访,作出怎样的推测。

He paused and looked up at the lighted window. Nodoubt the two women were sitting together in thatroom: Beaufort had probably sought consolation elsewhere.There were even rumours that he had left NewYork with Fanny Ring; but Mrs. Beaufort's attitudemade the report seem improbable.

他停住脚步,抬头看了看那个有灯光的窗子。两位女子肯定一起坐在那间屋里,博福特很可能到别处去寻求安慰了。甚至有传言说他已带着范妮·琳离开了纽约,但博福特太太的态度使这则报道显得很不可信。

Archer had the nocturnal perspective of Fifth Avenuealmost to himself. At that hour most people wereindoors, dressing for dinner; and he was secretly gladthat Ellen's exit was likely to be unobserved. As thethought passed through his mind the door opened, andshe came out. Behind her was a faint light, such asmight have been carried down the stairs to show herthe way. She turned to say a word to some one; thenthe door closed, and she came down the steps.

阿切尔几乎是独自观察第五大街的夜景,这时刻大多数人都在家中整装准备参加晚宴。他暗自庆幸埃伦离开时可能不会被人看见。正想到这里,只见大门开了,她走了出来。她身后是一盏昏暗的灯,可能是有人拿着下楼为她照路的,她转过身去对什么人说了句话,接着门就关上了,她走下了台阶。

"Ellen," he said in a low voice, as she reached thepavement.

“埃伦,”她走到人行道上时他低声喊道。

She stopped with a slight start, and just then he sawtwo young men of fashionable cut approaching. Therewas a familiar air about their overcoats and the waytheir smart silk mufflers were folded over their whiteties; and he wondered how youths of their qualityhappened to be dining out so early. Then he rememberedthat the Reggie Chiverses, whose house was afew doors above, were taking a large party that eveningto see Adelaide Neilson in Romeo and Juliet, and guessedthat the two were of the number. They passed under alamp, and he recognised Lawrence Lefferts and a youngChivers.

她略显惊讶地停住脚步。正在这时,他看见有两位装束入时的年轻人朝这边走来,他们穿的外套和折叠在白领带上面的漂亮白丝巾看起来有点眼熟。阿切尔奇怪,这种身份的年轻人怎么这么早就外出赴宴。接着他想起住在几步之外的里吉·奇弗斯夫妇今晚要邀请好几个人去观看阿德莱德·尼尔森演的《罗密欧与朱利叶》。他想这二位可能就属于那伙人。他们走到一盏路灯下,他认出原来是劳伦斯·莱弗茨和一位小奇弗斯。

A mean desire not to have Madame Olenska seen atthe Beauforts' door vanished as he felt the penetratingwarmth of her hand.

当他感觉到她手上那股有穿透力的暖流时,那种不愿让人在博福特门前看见奥兰斯卡夫人的俗念消失得无影无踪了。

"I shall see you now--we shall be together," hebroke out, hardly knowing what he said.

“现在我可以看见你了——我们要在一起了,”他脱口说道,几乎不知自己在讲什么。

"Ah," she answered, "Granny has told you?"

“啊,”她回答,“奶奶已经告诉你了?”

While he watched her he was aware that Lefferts andChivers, on reaching the farther side of the street corner,had discreetly struck away across Fifth Avenue. Itwas the kind of masculine solidarity that he himselfoften practised; now he sickened at their connivance.Did she really imagine that he and she could live likethis? And if not, what else did she imagine?

当他看着她的时候,他注意到莱弗茨和奇弗斯在走到拐角的另一端后,识趣地穿过第五大街走开了。这是一种他本人也经常履行的男性团结一致的原则,不过此刻他对他们的默许却感到恶心。难道她真以为他们可以这样生活下去吗?若不然,她还有什么想法呢?

"Tomorrow I must see you--somewhere where wecan be alone," he said, in a voice that sounded almostangry to his own ears.

“明天我一定要见你——找个只有我们两人的地方,”他说,那声音他自己听着也像是怒气冲冲似的。

She wavered, and moved toward the carriage.

她踌躇着,朝马车的方向移动。

"But I shall be at Granny's--for the present that is,"she added, as if conscious that her change of plansrequired some explanation.

“可是我要呆在奶奶家——我是说,目前,”她补充说,仿佛意识到她的改变计划需要做一定说明。

"Somewhere where we can be alone," he insisted.

“找个只有我们两人的地方,”他坚持说。

She gave a faint laugh that grated on him.

她轻声一笑,让他有些受不了。

"In New York? But there are no churches . . . nomonuments."

“你说在纽约吗?但这里没有教堂……也没有纪念馆。”

"There's the Art Museum--in the Park," he explained,as she looked puzzled. "At half-past two. I shall be atthe door . . ."

“可是有艺术博物馆——在公园里,”正当她有些为难时他大声说,“两点半,我在门口……”

She turned away without answering and got quicklyinto the carriage. As it drove off she leaned forward,and he thought she waved her hand in the obscurity.He stared after her in a turmoil of contradictory feelings.It seemed to him that he had been speaking not tothe woman he loved but to another, a woman he wasindebted to for pleasures already wearied of: it washateful to find himself the prisoner of this hackneyedvocabulary.

她没有回答便转过身去,立即上了马车。马车驶走的时候,她向前探了探身,他觉得她好像在黑暗中摆了摆手。他怀着矛盾混乱的心情从后面凝望着她,觉得自己仿佛不是在跟他心爱的女人谈话,他面对的好像是他已经厌倦、欠下感情债的另一个女人。发现自己老是摆脱不掉这些陈腐的词语,他对自己深感气愤。

"She'll come!" he said to himself, almost contemptuously.

“她会来的!”他几乎是轻蔑地对自己说。

Avoiding the popular "Wolfe collection," whose anecdoticcanvases filled one of the main galleries of the queerwilderness of cast-iron and encaustic tiles known as theMetropolitan Museum, they had wandered down apassage to the room where the "Cesnola antiquities"mouldered in unvisited loneliness.

称作都会博物馆的这一由铸铁与彩瓦构成的古里古怪的建筑物,有几个主要的画廊。其中之一挂满了描绘轶事趣闻的油画。他们躲开了这个最受欢迎的“伍尔夫珍藏”画廊,沿过道漫步来到一间房于,里面陈列的“查兹诺拉古代文物”在无人问津的孤独中渐渐消蚀。

They had this melancholy retreat to themselves, andseated on the divan enclosing the central steam-radiator,they were staring silently at the glass cabinets mountedin ebonised wood which contained the recovered fragmentsof Ilium.

他们两人来到这样一个忧郁的隐避之处,坐在环绕中央散热器的长沙发椅上,默默地凝视着架在黑檀木上的那些玻璃柜,里面陈列着发掘出土的骼骨碎片。

"It's odd," Madame Olenska said, "I never camehere before."

“真奇怪,”奥兰斯卡夫人说,“我以前从没来过这儿。”

"Ah, well--. Some day, I suppose, it will be a greatMuseum."

“啊,唔——我想,有一天它会变成一个了不起的博物馆。”

"Yes," she assented absently.

“是啊,”她心不在焉地赞同说。

She stood up and wandered across the room. Archer,remaining seated, watched the light movements of herfigure, so girlish even under its heavy furs, the cleverlyplanted heron wing in her fur cap, and the way a darkcurl lay like a flattened vine spiral on each cheek abovethe ear. His mind, as always when they first met, waswholly absorbed in the delicious details that made herherself and no other. Presently he rose and approachedthe case before which she stood. Its glass shelves werecrowded with small broken objects--hardly recognisabledomestic utensils, ornaments and personal trifles--madeof glass, of clay, of discoloured bronze and other time-blurred substances.

她站起来,在屋里来回走动。阿切尔仍旧坐着,观察她身体轻盈的动作。即使穿着厚重的毛皮外衣她也显得像个小姑娘似的。她的皮帽子上巧妙地插了一片鹭翅,两颊各有一个深色发鬈像螺旋形藤蔓平伏在耳朵上方。他的思想又像他们刚一见面时总会发生的那样,完全集中在使她区别于他人的那些,冶人的微枝末节上了。接着他起身走到她伫立的匣子跟前,匣子的玻璃搁板上堆满了破碎的小物件——几乎无法辨认的家用器皿、装饰品及个人用的小东西,有玻璃制的,泥土制的,褪色的铜制品,以及被时光模糊了的其他材料的物品。

"It seems cruel," she said, "that after a while nothingmatters . . . any more than these little things, that usedto be necessary and important to forgotten people, andnow have to be guessed at under a magnifying glassand labelled: `Use unknown.'"

“看起来好残酷啊,”她说。“过上一段时间,一切都会变得无关紧要了……就跟这些小东西一样。对那些被遗忘的人来说,它们当初都是重要的必需品,可如今只有放在放大镜下去猜测了,并且还加上标签:‘用途不详’。”

"Yes; but meanwhile--"

“是啊;可与此同时——”

"Ah, meanwhile--"

“哦,与此同时——”

As she stood there, in her long sealskin coat, herhands thrust in a small round muff, her veil drawndown like a transparent mask to the tip of her nose,and the bunch of violets he had brought her stirringwith her quickly-taken breath, it seemed incredible thatthis pure harmony of line and colour should ever sufferthe stupid law of change.

她站在那儿,身穿海豹皮的外套,两手插在一只小小的圆套筒里,面纱像层透明的面具一样垂到鼻尖上,他给她带来的那束紫罗兰伴随她快节奏的呼吸一抖一动的。这样和谐的线条与色彩也会受讨厌的规律支配而发生变化,简直是不可思议啊。

"Meanwhile everything matters--that concerns you,"he said.

“与此同时,一切又都至关重要——只要关系到你,”他说。

She looked at him thoughtfully, and turned back tothe divan. He sat down beside her and waited; butsuddenly he heard a step echoing far off down theempty rooms, and felt the pressure of the minutes.

她若有所思地看了看他,又坐回到沙发椅子上。他坐在她身旁,等待着。突然,他听到一声脚步声从那些空屋子的远处传来,并立即意识到时间的紧迫。

"What is it you wanted to tell me?" she asked, as ifshe had received the same warning.

“你想对我说什么?”她问,似乎也接到了同样的警告。

"What I wanted to tell you?" he rejoined. "Why,that I believe you came to New York because you wereafraid."

“我想对你说什么?”他应声道。“唔,我认为你来纽约是因为害怕了。”

"Afraid?"

“害怕什么?”

"Of my coming to Washington."

“怕我到华盛顿去。”

She looked down at her muff, and he saw her handsstir in it uneasily.

她低下头看着她的手筒,他见她的双手在里面不安地抖动。

"Well--?"

“嗯——?”

"Well--yes," she said.

“嗯——是的,”她说。

"You WERE afraid? You knew--?"

“你是害怕了?你明白了——?”

"Yes: I knew . . ."

“是的,我明白了……”

"Well, then?" he insisted.

“唔,那又怎样?”

"Well, then: this is better, isn't it?" she returned witha long questioning sigh.

“哦,所以还是这样比较好,不是吗?”她以疑问的语气拖着长音说。

"Better--?"

“比较好——?”

"We shall hurt others less. Isn't it, after all, what youalways wanted?"

“我们给别人的伤害会少一些,说起来,这不正是你一直想往的吗?”

"To have you here, you mean--in reach and yet outof reach? To meet you in this way, on the sly? It's thevery reverse of what I want. I told you the other daywhat I wanted."

“你是说,让你留在这儿——看得见却又摸不着?就这样子与你秘密相会?这与我想的正相反。那天我已经告诉过你我想怎样了。”

She hesitated. "And you still think this--worse?"

她迟疑了。“你仍然认为这样——更糟?”

"A thousand times!" He paused. "It would be easyto lie to you; but the truth is I think it detestable."

“糟一百倍!”他停顿一下又说:“对你说谎很容易,可事实是我认为那很讨厌。”

"Oh, so do I!" she cried with a deep breath of relief.

“啊,我也一样!”她喊道,并宽心地舒了口气。

He sprang up impatiently. "Well, then--it's my turnto ask: what is it, in God's name, that you thinkbetter?"

他急不可耐地跃身站了起来。“哎,既然这样——就该由我来问你了:你认为更好的办法究竟是什么呢?”

She hung her head and continued to clasp and unclaspher hands in her muff. The step drew nearer, anda guardian in a braided cap walked listlessly throughthe room like a ghost stalking through a necropolis.They fixed their eyes simultaneously on the case oppositethem, and when the official figure had vanisheddown a vista of mummies and sarcophagi Archer spokeagain.

她低下头,两只手在手筒里不停地握住又松开。那脚步声越来越近,一名戴穗带帽的警卫无精打采地从屋里走过,像个鬼魂蹑手蹑脚穿过墓地一样。他们俩同时把眼睛盯在对面的匣子上。警卫的身影在那些僵尸与石棺中间消失之后,阿切尔又开口了。

"What do you think better?"

“你认为怎样更好呢?”

Instead of answering she murmured: "I promisedGranny to stay with her because it seemed to me thathere I should be safer."

她没有回答,却嗫嚅地说:“我答应奶奶跟她住在一起,因为我觉得在这里没有危险。”

"From me?"

“没有我的危险?”

She bent her head slightly, without looking at him.

她略微低下头,没有正眼看他。

"Safer from loving me?"

“没有爱我的危险?”

Her profile did not stir, but he saw a tear overflowon her lashes and hang in a mesh of her veil.

她的侧影一动不动,但他发现一滴眼泪从她的睫毛间涌出,挂在了面纱的网孔上。

"Safer from doing irreparable harm. Don't let us belike all the others!" she protested.

“没有对别人造成不可挽回的伤害的危险。我们还是不要像其他人那样吧!”她提出异议说。

"What others? I don't profess to be different frommy kind. I'm consumed by the same wants and thesame longings."

“其他什么人?我不想假装与我的同类有什么不同,我也有同样的梦想与渴望。”

She glanced at him with a kind of terror, and he sawa faint colour steal into her cheeks.

她有些恐惧地瞥了他一眼。他发现她两颊泛起一片淡淡的红晕。

"Shall I--once come to you; and then go home?" shesuddenly hazarded in a low clear voice.

“如果我到你身边来一次,然后就回家,那样成吗?”她突然大着胆子、声音清晰地低声问道。

The blood rushed to the young man's forehead."Dearest!" he said, without moving. It seemed as if heheld his heart in his hands, like a full cup that the leastmotion might overbrim.

热血涌上了年轻人的额头。“最亲爱的!”他说,身体一动不动。仿佛他把心捧在了手中,像满满的一杯水,稍一动弹就会溢出来似的。

Then her last phrase struck his ear and his faceclouded. "Go home? What do you mean by goinghome?"

随着她后面的半句话传到耳中,他的脸又阴沉了下来。“回家?你说回家是什么意思?”

"Home to my husband."

“回我丈夫家。”

"And you expect me to say yes to that?"

“你指望我会同意吗?”

She raised her troubled eyes to his. "What else isthere? I can't stay here and lie to the people who'vebeen good to me."

她抬起头,用困惑的目光看着他。“还有什么办法呢?我可不能留在这儿,对那些善待我的人撒谎呀。”

"But that's the very reason why I ask you to comeaway!"

“正是为了这个理由,我才要你跟我远走高飞!”

"And destroy their lives, when they've helped me toremake mine?"

“在他们帮我重新生活之后,去毁掉他们的生活?”

Archer sprang to his feet and stood looking down onher in inarticulate despair. It would have been easy tosay: "Yes, come; come once." He knew the power shewould put in his hands if she consented; there wouldbe no difficulty then in persuading her not to go backto her husband.

阿切尔一跃站了起来。他低头看着她,心里充满一种难以名状的绝望。他本来可以不费力地说:“‘对,来吧,来一次吧。”他知道她一旦同意就会把决定权交给他,到时候劝她别回丈夫那儿去不会有什么困难。

But something silenced the word on his lips. A sortof passionate honesty in her made it inconceivable thathe should try to draw her into that familiar trap. "If Iwere to let her come," he said to himself, "I shouldhave to let her go again." And that was not to beimagined.

然而话到嘴边却又噎住了,她那副真挚诚恳的样子使他根本不可能冒昧地把她引进那种常见的陷阱。“假如我让她来,”他自己心里想,“我还得再放她走。”那后果是不可想象的。

But he saw the shadow of the lashes on her wetcheek, and wavered.

然而看着她湿润的面颊上睫毛的阴影,他动摇了。

"After all," he began again, "we have lives of ourown. . . . There's no use attempting the impossible.You're so unprejudiced about some things, so used, asyou say, to looking at the Gorgon, that I don't knowwhy you're afraid to face our case, and see it as itreally is--unless you think the sacrifice is not worthmaking."

“毕竟,”他又开口说,“我们也有自己的生活……办不到的事想也没用。你对一些事情那样不带偏见,用你的话说——那样习惯于看戈尔工的脸色,所以,我不明白你为什么不敢正视我们的关系,实事求是地看待它——除非你认为这种牺牲不值得。”

She stood up also, her lips tightening under a rapidfrown.

她也站了起来,迅即皱起眉头,闭紧了双唇。

"Call it that, then--I must go," she said, drawing herlittle watch from her bosom.

“既然你这么说,那——我一定要走了,”她说着,从胸前掏出她的小怀表。

She turned away, and he followed and caught her bythe wrist. "Well, then: come to me once," he said, hishead turning suddenly at the thought of losing her; andfor a second or two they looked at each other almostlike enemies.

她转身就走,他跟上去,一把抓住她的手腕。“哎,既然这样,那就来找我一次吧,”他说。一想到要失去她,他猛地转过头去。转瞬间,他们俩几乎像仇人似的你看着我,我看着你。

"When?" he insisted. "Tomorrow?"

“什么时间?”他紧逼地问。“明天?”

She hesitated. "The day after."

她踌躇了。“后天吧。”

"Dearest--!" he said again.

“最亲爱的——!”他又说。

She had disengaged her wrist; but for a moment theycontinued to hold each other's eyes, and he saw thather face, which had grown very pale, was flooded witha deep inner radiance. His heart beat with awe: he feltthat he had never before beheld love visible.

她已经把手腕挣脱出来,但他们的目光一时还对视着。他见她那苍白的脸上焕发着内心的光华,他的心恐惧地跳动着,觉得自己从未见到过爱是这样明明白白。

"Oh, I shall be late--good-bye. No, don't come anyfarther than this," she cried, walking hurriedly awaydown the long room, as if the reflected radiance in hiseyes had frightened her. When she reached the door sheturned for a moment to wave a quick farewell.

“哎呀,我要晚了——再见。不,你别再往前走了,”她喊道,一面急匆匆地沿着长长的屋子走去,仿佛他眼睛里折射的神色吓坏了她。她走到门口,转过身停了一下,挥手匆匆告别。

Archer walked home alone. Darkness was falling whenhe let himself into his house, and he looked about atthe familiar objects in the hall as if he viewed themfrom the other side of the grave.

阿切尔一个人走回家。等他进家时夜幕已经降临。他打量着门厅里熟悉的物品,仿佛是从坟墓另一端观察似的。

The parlour-maid, hearing his step, ran up the stairsto light the gas on the upper landing.

客厅女佣听到他的脚步声,跑上楼梯去点上面梯台上的煤气灯。

"Is Mrs. Archer in?"

“阿切尔太太在家吗?”

"No, sir; Mrs. Archer went out in the carriage afterluncheon, and hasn't come back."

“不在,老爷。阿切尔太太午饭后坐马车出去了,现在还没回来。”

With a sense of relief he entered the library and flunghimself down in his armchair. The parlour-maid followed,bringing the student lamp and shaking somecoals onto the dying fire. When she left he continued tosit motionless, his elbows on his knees, his chin on hisclasped hands, his eyes fixed on the red grate.

他怀着一种宽慰走进图书室,一屁股坐到扶手椅上。女佣跟在后面,带来了台灯,并向快要熄灭的壁炉里加了点煤。她走后他继续一动不动地坐着,双肘压在膝上,两手交叉托着下巴,眼睛盯着发红的炉格。

He sat there without conscious thoughts, withoutsense of the lapse of time, in a deep and grave amazementthat seemed to suspend life rather than quicken it."This was what had to be, then . . . this was what hadto be," he kept repeating to himself, as if he hung inthe clutch of doom. What he had dreamed of had beenso different that there was a mortal chill in his rapture.

他坐在那儿,思绪纷乱,忘记了时间的流逝,深深陷入惊愕之中,仿佛生活不是加快了,而是被中止了。“这是迫不得已的,那么……这是迫不得已的,”他心里反复地说,好像遭了厄运似的。这结局与他梦寐以求的相去太远,给他的狂喜泼上一盆彻骨的冰水。

The door opened and May came in.

门开了,梅走了进来。

"I'm dreadfully late--you weren't worried, were you?"she asked, laying her hand on his shoulder with one ofher rare caresses.

“我回来太晚了——没让你担心吧?”她问,一面把头靠在他的肩上,难得地拥抱着他。

He looked up astonished. "Is it late?"

他愕然地抬起头问:“已经很晚了吗?”

"After seven. I believe you've been asleep!" Shelaughed, and drawing out her hat pins tossed her velvethat on the sofa. She looked paler than usual, but sparklingwith an unwonted animation.

“都7点多了,我以为你已经睡了呢!”她笑着说。随后拍下帽子上的别针,把她的丝绒帽丢到沙发上。她比平时显得苍白些,但精神异常焕发。

"I went to see Granny, and just as I was going awayEllen came in from a walk; so I stayed and had a longtalk with her. It was ages since we'd had a real talk. . . ."She had dropped into her usual armchair, facing his,and was running her fingers through her rumpled hair.He fancied she expected him to speak.

“我去看外婆了,正当我要走的时候,埃伦散步回来了,于是我又留下,跟她进行了一次长谈,我们许久没有这样真诚地交谈了……”她坐在平时坐的那把扶手椅上,面对着他,用手指梳理着纷乱的头发。他觉得她在等他说话。

"A really good talk," she went on, smiling with whatseemed to Archer an unnatural vividness. "She was sodear--just like the old Ellen. I'm afraid I haven't beenfair to her lately. I've sometimes thought--"

“是真正亲切的交谈,”她接着说,脸上活泼的笑容让阿切尔感到有些做作。“她非常可爱——完全像是过去那个埃伦。恐怕我最近对她不够公平,有时我认为——”

Archer stood up and leaned against the mantelpiece,out of the radius of the lamp.

阿切尔站起来,倚在壁炉台上,躲开了灯光的照射范围。

"Yes, you've thought--?" he echoed as she paused.

“噢,你认为——?”见她打住话头,他重复一遍说。

"Well, perhaps I haven't judged her fairly. She's sodifferent--at least on the surface. She takes up suchodd people--she seems to like to make herself conspicuous.I suppose it's the life she's led in that fast Europeansociety; no doubt we seem dreadfully dull to her.But I don't want to judge her unfairly."

“唉,也许我对她评价不够公平。她是那么特殊——至少在表面上,她接纳那么古怪的人——好像她喜欢引人注意。我猜这就是她在放荡的欧洲社会所过的生活吧;我们这些人在她心目中无疑是很无聊。不过我不想对她做不公正的评价。”

She paused again, a little breathless with theunwonted length of her speech, and sat with her lipsslightly parted and a deep blush on her cheeks.

她又停住口,由于不习惯讲这么多而有点儿气喘吁吁。她坐在那儿,双唇微启,两颊绯红。

Archer, as he looked at her, was reminded of theglow which had suffused her face in the Mission Gardenat St. Augustine. He became aware of the sameobscure effort in her, the same reaching out towardsomething beyond the usual range of her vision.

阿切尔看着她,想起了在圣奥古斯汀教区花园里她那张涨红的脸。他注意到她内心那种同样的暗中努力,那种对超越她正常想像力的某种事情同样的企盼。

"She hates Ellen," he thought, "and she's trying toovercome the feeling, and to get me to help her toovercome it."

“她恨埃伦,”他心里想。“并且想要克服这种感情,还想让我帮她克服。”

The thought moved him, and for a moment he wason the point of breaking the silence between them, andthrowing himself on her mercy.

这一想法使他深受感动。有一会儿他直想打破两人之间的沉默,豁出去求助于她的宽恕。

"You understand, don't you," she went on, "whythe family have sometimes been annoyed? We all didwhat we could for her at first; but she never seemed tounderstand. And now this idea of going to see Mrs.Beaufort, of going there in Granny's carriage! I'm afraidshe's quite alienated the van der Luydens . . ."

“你知道家里人有时给弄得很烦恼,”她接着说,“对吗?开始我们都尽可能为她着想,可她好像根本就不理解。而现在又想起来去看博福特太太,还要坐外婆的马车去!我担心她已经使范德卢顿夫妇产生了不和……”

"Ah," said Archer with an impatient laugh. Theopen door had closed between them again.

“啊哈,”阿切尔不耐烦地笑道。他俩中间那道门重又关上了。

"It's time to dress; we're dining out, aren't we?" heasked, moving from the fire.

“到了换衣服的时间了。我们要出去吃饭,对吗?”他问道,一面离开火炉。

She rose also, but lingered near the hearth. As hewalked past her she moved forward impulsively, asthough to detain him: their eyes met, and he saw thathers were of the same swimming blue as when he hadleft her to drive to Jersey City.

她也站了起来,却继续在炉边磨蹭。当他走过她身边时,她冲动地迎上去,仿佛要留住他似的。他们的目光相遇了,他发觉她那双眼睛又蓝汪汪的,跟他告别她去泽西城时一样。

She flung her arms about his neck and pressed hercheek to his.

她张开双臂绕住他的脖子,把脸紧紧贴到他的脸上。

"You haven't kissed me today," she said in a whisper;and he felt her tremble in his arms.

“你今天还没吻我呢,”她悄声地说;他感觉到她在他怀中颤抖了。