I’ll put my whole grey head into the fire for it!
I have a poor lame wife and thirteen children. My father died of starvation last week. Nastasia Philipovna, Nastasia Philipovna!” The wretched little man wept, and groaned, and crawled towards the fire.
“Away, out of the way!” cried Nastasia. “Make room, all of you! Gania, what are you standing there for? Don’t stand on ceremony. Put in your hand! There’s your whole happiness smouldering away, look! Quick!”
But Gania had borne too much that day, and especially this evening, and he was not prepared for this last, quite unexpected trial.
The crowd parted on each side of him and he was left face