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当前位置:主页 > 英国小说 > 德伯家的苔丝 > 第7章 团圆 The Fulfilment
第5节 第五十七章 【
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与此同时,安琪尔·克莱尔沿着他来时走的路往回走着,进了他住的旅馆,一双眼睛茫然地瞪着,坐一下来吃早饭。他毫无知觉地又吃又喝,然后突然吩咐结账;付完了账,就提起来的时候随身带的唯一行李——一只装洗梳用具的小旅行袋,出了旅馆。
正当他要离开的时候,一封电报送到了他的手上——那是他的母亲给他打来的,只有寥寥数语,说的是他们收到了他的地址,很高兴,同时又告诉他,他的哥哥卡斯伯特向梅茜·羌特求婚,梅茜小姐已经答应了。
克莱尔把电报揉成一团,向火车站走去;到了火车站,才知道还要等一个多小时火车才会开走。他坐下来等候,他等了一刻钟的时间,就觉得再也等不下去了。他的心已破碎,感觉麻木,再也没有什么要急着去办的事了;但是,他在这个城市里有了这样一番经历和感受,就希望离开这儿;于是他转身向外面的一个车站走去,打算在那儿上火车。
他走的是一条宽阔的大路,前面不远,大路就进入一个山谷,从远处看去,大路从山谷的这一头到另一头穿谷而过,他把这段山谷中的道路走了一大半,然后走上了西边的山坡,在他停下来喘一口气的时候,无意间向后看了一眼。为什么向后看去,他自己也说不清楚,不过似乎有一种力量非逼着他向后看不可。他只见身后的那条大路像一根带子,越远越细,但是当他向后看的时候,在那条空旷的白色大路上出现了一个移动着的小点。
那个小点是一个奔跑的人影。克莱尔模模糊糊地觉得那个人是来追赶他的,就停下来等着。
跑下山坡的人影是一个女人,不过他完全没有想到他的妻子会跟着他追来。他现在看见的她已经完全换了装束,所以当她走得很近了的时候,他也没有认出她来。直到她走到了他的跟前,他才敢相信她就是苔丝。
“我看见你——离开火车站的——刚好我走到那儿之前——我就一路追来了!”
她的脸色惨白,上气不接下气,身上的每一块肌肉都在颤抖,他什么也没有问她,只是抓住她的一只手,把它夹在自己的胳膊里,带着她往前走。为了避免遇见任何有可能遇见的行人,他就离开大路,走进枞树林中的一条小路。当他们走进了枞树林的深处,听见枞树枝叶的呜咽声时,他才停了下来,带着疑问的神情看着她。
“安琪尔,”她说,仿佛在等着问她。“你知道为什么我一路追了来吗?告诉你吧,我已经把他杀了!”她说的时候,脸上露出一点儿可怜的惨笑。
“什么?”他想到她奇怪的神情,以为她神经错乱了,所以问她。
“我真的把他杀了——我不知道我是怎么把他杀了的。”她继续说。“安琪尔,杀他是为了你,也是为了我。早在我用手套打他的嘴的时候,我就想过,因为他在我年幼无知的时候设陷阱害我,又通过我间接害了你,恐怕总有一天我也许要杀了他。他来这儿拆散了我们,毁了我们,现在他再也不能害我们了。安琪尔,我从来就没有像爱你一样爱过他。这你是知道的,是不是?你一直不肯回来找我,我是没有办法才跟了他的。你为什么要离开我呢——当时我那样爱你,你为什么要离开我呢?我想不出来你为什么要离开我。但是我不怪你;只是,安琪尔,既然我已经把他杀了,你能不能宽恕我对不住你的罪过?我一路跑来的时候,我就想过,你一定会因为我把他杀了而宽恕我的。杀他的想法就像一道亮光,让我感到只有那样你才能回到我的身边来。我再也不能忍受失去你了——我完全无法忍受你不爱我,这你是不知道的!现在你跟我说你爱我吧,亲爱的亲爱的丈夫;既然我已经把他杀了,跟我说你爱我吧!”
“我真的爱你,苔丝——啊,我真的爱你——所有的爱都回来了!”他热烈地把她拥抱在怀里说。“可是你说你把他杀了这句话是什么意思呢?”
“我的意思是说我真的把他杀了,”她嘟哝着说,好像在梦里一样。
“什么,是杀在他的身上吗?他死了吗?”
“不错。他听见我在那儿为你哭着,就尖刻地嘲弄我;用难听的话骂你;后来,我就把他杀了。我心里忍受不了啦。他以前就因为你而挖苦我。接着我就穿好衣服出来找你了。”
克莱尔开始慢慢地相信,她至少稍微地动过杀机,想做她刚才说的事;他一面对她的动机感到恐惧,一面又惊讶她对他自己的爱情的力量,惊讶这种奇特的爱情,为了爱情,她竟然完全不顾道德。由于还没有意识到她的行为的严重性,她似乎终于感到了满足;她伏在他的肩上,高兴地哭着,他看着她,不知道在德贝维尔家族的血统中究竟有什么秘密特点,才导致苔丝这种精神错乱的举动——如果说她只是一种错乱举动的话。他突然在心里想到,之所以会产生关于马车和凶杀的家族传说,大概就是因为知道德贝维尔家里出过这种事情。同时他也按照他混乱的和激动的思想推理,认为苔丝只是在她提到的过度悲伤下一时失去了心理平衡,才陷入这种深渊的。
这件事如果是真的,那就太令人可怕了;如果只是一种暂时的幻觉,那也太令人悲伤了。不过无论如何,现在站在他面前的就是曾经被他遗弃了的妻子,这个感情热烈的女人紧紧地靠着他,一点儿也不怀疑他就是她的保护者。他看出来,在她的心里,在可能的范围内,她认为他只能是她的保护者。柔情终于彻底战胜了克莱尔。他用他苍白的嘴唇不停地吻她,握住她的手,说——
“我再也不会离开你了!我最亲爱的人,无论是你杀了人还是没有杀人,我都要尽我的一切力量保护你!”
于是他们在树林里往前走,苔丝不时地把头转过去,看一看安琪尔,虽然他疲惫不堪,一脸憔悴,但是她在他的形貌上一点儿也看不出毛病来。在她的眼里,他无论在形体还是在心灵上,还是像过去一样完美。他仍然是他的安提诺俄斯①,甚至是她的阿波罗②;他那张满是病容的脸,今天在她爱情的眼光看来,还是和她第一次见到他的时候一样,像黎明一样美丽,因为在这个世界上,只有这个人的脸曾经纯洁地爱过她,也只有这个人相信她是一个纯洁的人。
 
①安提诺俄斯(Antinous),古代罗马美男子,为罗马皇帝哈德林(Hadrian)所爱。
②阿波罗(Appollo),希腊神话中的太阳神,以美和勇敢著名。

他有一种直觉,现在不能像他想的那样去镇外的第一个车站了;这儿的枞树林绵延数英里,于是他们仍然往枞树林的深处钻去。他们互相搂着对方的腰,踩着枞树干枯的针状叶子漫步走去;他们意识到他们终于又在一起了,这儿没有任何人来打扰他们,便把那具死尸抛在脑后,沉浸在如痴如醉,似真似幻的气氛中。他们就这样向前走了好几英里,直到苔丝惊醒了,看看四周,胆怯地问——
“我们这是在向什么地方走呢?”
“我不知道,最亲爱的。怎么啦?”
“我也不知道。”
“哦,我们往前再走几英里吧,到了天黑的时候,我们再找地方住吧——也许,我们可以在一个僻静的草屋里找到一个住处。你能走吗,苔丝?”
“啊,能走!只要你搂着我,我就能永远永远走下去!”
总的来说,事情也只能如此了。因此他们就加快了步伐,避开大路,沿着偏僻的小路大致上往北走。整整一天,他们的行动都是不切实际的,没有明确的企图;他们两个人似乎谁也没有考虑到逃跑的有用办法,如化装或者长期躲藏。他们就像两个小孩子,所有的想法都是临时的,不是防范的。
在中午的时候,他们走近了一个路边的客栈,苔丝想和他一起进去吃点儿东西,但是安琪尔劝她还是留在这儿,呆在这块差不多还是林地和树林的灌木丛里,等着他回来。她穿的衣服是当时流行的样式,就是她带的那把伞柄是象牙的阳伞,在他们信步来到的这个偏僻地点,也是没有人看见过的东西。这些时兴的物品,一定会引起酒店里坐在长椅上的人的注意。不久安琪尔回来了,带回来的食物够六个人吃,还有两瓶酒——这些东西,即使有什么意外发生,也够他们支持一两天的了。
他们在一些枯树枝上坐下来,一起分享食物。在一两点钟之间,他们把没有吃完的东西包好,又继续朝前走。
“我感到无论走多远我都走得动!”他说。
“我想我们也许要往去内地的路上走,在内地我们可以躲一些时候,除了靠近沿海的一些地方,他们很可能不会到内地去追捕我们,”克莱尔说。“躲上一段时间,等他们把我们忘了,我们才能从某个港口出去。”
她什么也没有回答,只是紧紧地握住他的手,于是他们继续往内地走去。虽然那时候是英国的五月季节,但是天气却清明晴朗,下午的天气更加暖和。后来他们又沿着那条小路走了许多英里,一直走进了叫做新林的树林的深处;到了傍晚,他们从一条篱路的拐弯处绕过去,看见一条小溪,小溪上有一座小桥,小桥后面有一块大木板,上面用白色的油漆写着几个大字:“理想房屋,家具齐全,待租入住”;下面写着详细说明,以及同某几个伦敦代理机构联系的地址。他们走进栅栏门,只见这座房屋是一座古建筑,是用砖建造的,式样整齐,面积很大。
“我知道这座房屋,”克莱尔说,“这是布兰夏斯特庄园。你看,门关着,走道上都长满了草。”
“有几个窗户开着哪!”苔丝说。
“我想那是让房间透气的。”
“所有的房间都空着,可是我们连一个住处也没有!”
“你一定累了,我的苔丝!”他说。“我们马上就不走了。”他吻了吻她那悲伤的嘴,又带着她往前走。
他也同样渐渐累了,因为他们已经走了十二英里到十五英里的路程,所以他们必须考虑怎样休息的问题了。他们远远望着那些孤独的小屋和小客栈,很想找一个客栈住下来。但是他们心里害怕,只好躲开了。走到后来,他们迈不动脚步了,只好停下来不走了。
“我们能不能在树下睡觉呢?”她问。
克莱尔认为还没有到在外面睡觉的节气。
“我一直在想我们路过的那座空房屋,”他说。“让我们再回到那座房屋那儿去吧。”
他们又迈开了往回走的脚步,走了半个小时,才走到他们先前路过的栅栏门外。他先让苔丝在外面等着,自己进去看看有没有人。
苔丝在栅栏门里的灌木丛中坐下来,克莱尔悄悄地向房屋走去。克莱尔进去了相当长的时间,回来的时候都把苔丝急坏了,其实她不是为自己着急,而是为他着急。他找到了一个小孩子,从他那儿打听出,看管房子的是一个老太太,她住在附近那个村子里,只是在天气好的时候才到这儿来打开窗户,要等太阳落山了她才来把窗户关上。“现在,我们可以从楼下的一个窗户里进去,在里面睡觉了。”他说。
苔丝由他保护着,慢慢地向正门走去;百叶窗关上了,它们像看不见的眼珠,防止有人偷看。他们又向前走了几步,来到门口;门旁有一个窗户开着。克莱尔翻身爬了进去,接着又把身后的苔丝拉了进去。
除了大厅,所有的房间都一团漆黑,他们就上了楼。楼上所有的百叶窗也关得紧紧的,让空气流通的工作敷衍了事,至少那天如此,因为只有前面大厅的一个窗户和楼上后面的一个窗户开着。克莱尔拉开一个大房间的门栓,摸索着走进去,把百叶窗户打开了两三寸。一束炫目的夕阳照进房间,照出了笨重的老式家具,红色的绵缎窗帘,还有一张有四根柱子的大床;那张大床的床头雕刻着奔跑的人物,显然是赛跑中的阿塔兰塔①。
 
①阿塔兰塔(Atalanta)希腊神话中著名的阿耳卡狄亚女猎手。凡向她求婚者都要同她赛跑,凡是赛跑输了的她都要用矛刺死。弥拉尼翁同她赛跑时得到女神相助,边跑边扔金苹果。阿塔兰塔因捡金苹果而落在后面,最后做了弥拉尼翁的妻子。

“终于可以休息了!”克莱尔把他的旅行小袋和食物包放下说。
他们两个人极其安静地呆在房间里,等着照看房子的人来关窗子:为了小心起见,他们又把百叶窗照原样关好,让他们完全隐藏在黑暗中,防止照看房子的老太太因为偶然的原因把他们房间的门打开了。在六点到七点之间,老太太来了,不过没有到他们躲藏的那一边去。他们听见她把窗子关上,拴好,然后走了。接着克莱尔又悄悄把窗户打开一点,透进来一些亮光,一起把晚饭吃了,苍茫的夜色渐渐袭来,他们没有蜡烛驱散黑暗,也就只好呆在黑暗中了。
 

Meanwhile Angel Clare had walked automatically along the way by which he had come, and, entering his hotel, sat down over the breakfast, staring at nothingness. He went on eating and drinking unconsciously till on a sudden he demanded his bill; having paid which he took his dressing-bag in his hand, the only luggage he had brought with him, and went out.

At the moment of his departure a telegram was handed to him a few words from his mother, stating that they were glad to know his address, and informing him that his brother Cuthbert had proposed to and been accepted by Mercy Chant.

Clare crumpled up the paper, and followed the route to the station; reaching it, he found that there would be no train leaving for an hour and more. He sat down to wait, and having waited a quarter of an hour felt that he could wait there no longer. Broken in heart and numbed, he had nothing to hurry for; but he wished to get out of a town which had been the scene of such an experience, and turned to walk to the first station onward, and let the train pick him up there.

The highway that he followed was open, and at a little distance dipped into a valley, across which it could be seen running from edge to edge. He had traversed the greater part of this depression, and was climbing the western acclivity, when, pausing for breath, he unconsciously looked back. Why he did so he could not say, but something seemed to impel him to the act. The tape-like surface of the road diminished in his rear as far as he could see, and as he gazed a moving spot intruded on the white vacuity of its perspective.

It was a human figure running. Clare waited, with a dim sense that somebody was trying to overtake him.

The form descending the incline was a woman's, yet so entirely was his mind blinded to the idea of his wife's following him that even when she came nearer he did not recognize her under the totally changed attire in which he now beheld her. It was not till she was quite close that he could believe her to be Tess.

`I saw you - turn away from the station - just before I got there - and I have been following you all this way!'

She was so pale, so breathless, so quivering in every muscle, that he did not ask her a single question, but seizing her hand, and pulling it within his arm, he led her along. To avoid meeting any possible wayfarers he left the high road, and took a footpath under some fir-trees. When they were deep among the moaning boughs he stopped and looked at her inquiringly.

`Angel,' she said, as if waiting for this, `do you know what I have been running after you for? To tell you that I have killed him!' A pitiful white smile lit her face as she spoke.

`What!' said he, thinking from the strangeness of her manner that she was in some delirium.

`I have done it - I don't know how,' she continued. `Still, I owed it to you, and to myself, Angel. I feared long ago, when I struck him on the mouth with my glove, that I might do it some day for the trap he set for me in my simple youth, and his wrong to you through me. He has come between us and ruined us, and now he can never do it any more. I never loved him at all, Angel, as I loved you. You know it, don't you? You believe it? You didn't come back to me, and I was obliged to go back to him. Why did you go away - why did you - when I loved you so? I can't think why you did it. But I don't blame you; only, Angel, will you forgive me my sin against you, now I have killed him? I thought as I ran along that you would be sure to forgive me now I have done that. It came to me as a shining light that I should get you back that way. I could not bear the loss of you any longer - you don't know how entirely I was unable to bear your not loving me! Say you do now, dear, dear husband; say you do, now I have killed him!'

`I do love you, Tess - O, I do - it is all come back!' he said, tightening his arms round her with fervid pressure. `But how do you mean - you have killed him?'

`I mean that I have,' she murmured in a reverie.

`What, bodily? Is he dead?'

`Yes. He heard me crying about you, and he bitterly taunted me; and called you by a foul name; and then I did it. My heart could not bear it. He had nagged me about you before. And then I dressed myself and came away to find you.'

By degrees he was inclined to believe that she had faintly attempted, at least, what she said she had done; and his horror at her impulse was mixed with amazement at the strength of her affection for himself, and at the strangeness of its quality, which had apparently extinguished her moral sense altogether. Unable to realize the gravity of her conduct she seemed at last content; and he looked at her as she lay upon his shoulder, weeping with happiness, and wondered what obscure strain in the d'Urberville blood had led to this aberration - if it were an aberration. There momentarily flashed through his mind that the family tradition of the coach and murder might have arisen because the d'Urbervilles had been known to do these things. As well as his confused and excited ideas could reason, he supposed that in the moment of mad grief of which she spoke her mind had lost its balance, and plunged her into this abyss.

It was very terrible if true; if a temporary hallucination, sad. But, anyhow, here was this deserted wife of his, this passionately fond woman, clinging to him without a suspicion that he would be anything to her but a protector. He saw that for him to be otherwise was not, in her mind, within the region of the possible. Tenderness was absolutely dominant in Clare at last. He kissed her endlessly with his white lips, and held her hand, and said `I will not desert you! I will protect you by every means in my power, dearest love, whatever you may have done or not have done!'

They then walked on under the trees, Tess turning her head every now and then to look at him. Worn and unhandsome as he had become, it was plain that she did not discern the least fault in his appearance. To her he was, as of old, all that was perfection, personally and mentally. He was still her Antinous, her Apollo even; his sickly face was beautiful as the morning to her affectionate regard on this day no less than when she first beheld him; for was it not the face of the one man on earth who had loved her purely, and who had believed in her as pure.

With an instinct as to possibilities he did not now, as he had intended, make for the first station beyond the town, but plunged still farther under the firs, which here abounded for miles. Each clasping the other round the waist they promenaded over the dry bed of fir-needles, thrown into a vague intoxicating atmosphere at the consciousness of being together at last, with no living soul between them; ignoring that there was a corpse. Thus they proceeded for several miles till Tess, arousing herself, looked about her, and said, timidly--

`Are we going anywhere in particular?'

`I don't know, dearest. Why?'

`I don't know.'

`Well, we might walk a few miles further, and when it is evening find lodgings somewhere or other - in a lonely cottage, perhaps. Can you walk well, Tessy?'

`O yes! I could walk for ever and ever with your arm round me!' Upon the whole it seemed a good thing to do. Thereupon they quickened their pace, avoiding high roads, and following obscure paths tending more or less northward. But there was an unpractical vagueness in their movements throughout the day; neither one of them seemed to consider any question of effectual escape, disguise, or long concealment. Their every idea was temporary and unforefending, like the plans of two children.

At mid-day they drew near to a roadside inn, and Tess would have entered it with him to get something to eat, but he persuaded her to remain among the trees and bushes of this half-woodland, half-moorland part of the country, till he should come back. Her clothes were of recent fashion; even the ivory-handled parasol that she carried was of a shape unknown in the retired spot to which they had now wandered; and the cut of such articles would have attracted attention in the settle of a tavern. He soon returned, with food enough for half-a-dozen people and two bottles of wine - enough to last them for a day or more, should any emergency arise.

They sat down upon some dead boughs and shared their meal. Between one and two o'clock they packed up the remainder and went on again.

`I feel strong enough to walk any distance,' said she.

`I think we may as well steer in a general way towards the interior of the country, where we can hide for a time, and are less likely to be looked for than anywhere near the coast,' Clare remarked. `Later on, when they have forgotten us, we can make for some port.'

She made no reply to this beyond that of grasping him more tightly, and straight inland they went. Though the season was an English May the weather was serenely bright, and during the afternoon it was quite warm. Through the latter miles of their walk their footpath had taken them into the depths of the New Forest, and towards evening, turning the corner of a lane, they perceived behind a brook and bridge a large board on which was painted in white letters, `This desirable Mansion to be Let Furnished'; particulars following, with directions to apply to some London agents. Passing through the gate they could see the house, an old brick building of regular design and large accommodation.

`I know it,' said Clare. `It is Bramshurst Court. You can see that it is shut up, and grass is growing on the drive.'

`Some of the windows are open,' said Tess.

`Just to air the rooms, I suppose.'

`All these rooms empty, and we without a roof to our heads!'

`You are getting tired, my Tess!' he said. `We'll stop soon.' And kissing her sad mouth he again led her onwards.

He was growing weary likewise, for they had wandered a dozen or fifteen miles, and it became necessary to consider what they should do for rest. They looked from afar at isolated cottages and little inns, and were inclined to approach one of the latter, when their hearts failed them, and they sheered off. At length their gait dragged, and they stood still.

`Could we sleep under the trees?' she asked.

He thought the season insufficiently advanced.

`I have been thinking of that empty mansion we passed,' he said. `Let us go back towards it again.'

They retraced their steps, but it was half an hour before they stood without the entrance-gate as earlier. He then requested her to stay where she was, whilst he went to see who was within.

She sat down among the bushes within the gate, and Clare crept towards the house. His absence lasted some considerable time, and when he returned Tess was wildly anxious, not for herself, but for him. He had found out from a boy that there was only an old woman in charge as caretaker, and she only came there on fine days, from the hamlet near, to open and shut the windows. She would come to shut them at sunset. `Now, we can get in through one of the lower windows, and rest there,' said he.

Under his escort she went tardily forward to the main front, whose shuttered windows, like sightless eyeballs, excluded the possibility of watchers. The door was reached a few steps further, and one of the windows beside it was open. Clare clambered in, and pulled Tess in after him.

Except the hall the rooms were all in darkness, and they ascended the staircase. Up here also the shutters were tightly closed, the ventilation being perfunctorily done, for this day at least, by opening the hall-window in front and an upper window behind. Clare unlatched the door of a large chamber, felt his way across it, and parted the shutters to the width of two or three inches. A shaft of dazzling sunlight glanced into the room, revealing heavy, old-fashioned furniture, crimson damask hangings, and an enormous four-post bedstead, along the head of which were carved running figures, apparently Atalanta's race.

`Rest at last!' said he, setting down his bag and the parcel of viands.

They remained in great quietness till the caretaker should have come to shut the windows: as a precaution, putting themselves in total darkness by barring the shutters as before, lest the woman should open the door of their chamber for any casual reason. Between six and seven o'clock she came, but did not approach the wing they were in. They heard her close the windows, fasten them, lock the door, and go away. Then Clare again stole a chink of light from the window, and they shared another meal, till by-and-by they were enveloped in the shades of night which they had no candle to disperse.