La xasada la plu perilosa (“The most dangerous game”) es un nara corta par Richard Connell, prima publicida en 1924. Esta tradui es par Randy Hudson en 2012.
“Ala a la destra — a alga loca — on ave un isola grande.” — Whitney dise. “Lo es alga un misterio —”
“Off there to the right — somewhere — is a large island,” said Whitney. “It’s rather a mystery —”
“Cual isola es lo?” — Rainsford demanda.
“What island is it?” Rainsford asked.
“La cartas vea nomi lo ‘Isola Trapibarcon’.” — Whitney responde. “Un nom sujestosa, no? Marinores ave un teme surprendente de la loca. Me no sabe perce. Alga superstisio —”
“The old charts call it ‘Ship-Trap Island,”' Whitney replied. “A suggestive name, isn’t it? Sailors have a curious dread of the place. I don’t know why. Some superstition —”
“Me no pote vide lo.” — Rainsford comenta, en atenta regarda tra la note tropical e umida cual es palpable en cuando lo presa sua negria densa e calda sur la iato.
“Can’t see it,” remarked Rainsford, trying to peer through the dank tropical night that was palpable as it pressed its thick warm blackness in upon the yacht.
“Tu ave bon oios” — Whitney dise con un rie — “e me ia vide ce tu fusili un alce cual move en la savana brun de autono a cuatrosento metres, ma an tu no pote vide tra ses cilometres o simil de un note caribean sin luna.”
“You’ve good eyes,” said Whitney, with a laugh, “and I’ve seen you pick off a moose moving in the brown fall bush at four hundred yards, but even you can’t see four miles or so through a moonless Caribbean night.”
“An no ses metres.” — Rainsford confesa. “Iu! Lo es como veluda negra e umida.”
“Nor four yards,” admitted Rainsford. “Ugh! It’s like moist black velvet.”
“On va ave lus sufisinte en Rio.” — Whitney promete. “Nos ta debe es ala pos poca dias. Me espera ce la fusiles per jaguar veni ja de Purdey. Nos ta debe ave alga bon xasa a alta de la Amazonas. Un sporte grande, la xasa.”
“It will be light enough in Rio,” promised Whitney. “We should make it in a few days. I hope the jaguar guns have come from Purdey’s. We should have some good hunting up the Amazon. Great sport, hunting.”
“La sporte la plu bon de la mundo.” — Rainsford acorda.
“The best sport in the world,” agreed Rainsford.
“Per la xasor.” — Whitney ajunta. “No per la jaguar.”
“For the hunter,” amended Whitney. “Not for the jaguar.”
“No parla asurda, Whitney.” — Rainsford dise. “Tu es un xasor de bestias grande, no un filosofiste. Ci cura sur como un jaguar senti?”
“Don’t talk rot, Whitney,” said Rainsford. “You’re a big-game hunter, not a philosopher. Who cares how a jaguar feels?”
“Cisa la jaguar cura.” — Whitney oserva.
“Perhaps the jaguar does,” observed Whitney.
“Ba! Los ave no comprende.”
“Bah! They’ve no understanding.”
“An tal, me pensa alga los comprende un cosa — la teme. La teme de dole e la teme de mori.”
“Even so, I rather think they understand one thing — fear. The fear of pain and the fear of death.”
“Babela.” — Rainsford dise riente. “Esta clima calda moli tu, Whitney. Tu debe es un realiste. La mundo es fada de du clases — la xasores e la xasadas. Fortunosa, tu e me es xasores. Esce tu pensa nos ia pasa ancora acel isola?”
“Nonsense,” laughed Rainsford. “This hot weather is making you soft, Whitney. Be a realist. The world is made up of two classes — the hunters and the huntees. Luckily, you and I are hunters. Do you think we’ve passed that island yet?”
“Me no pote sabe en la oscur. Me espera tal.”
“I can’t tell in the dark. I hope so.”
“Perce?” — Rainsford demanda.
“Why?” asked Rainsford.
“La loca ave un reputa — un mal.”
“The place has a reputation — a bad one.”
“Canibales?” — Rainsford sujesta.
“Cannibals?” suggested Rainsford.
“Tota no. An canibales no ta abita en tal loca abandonada de Dio. Ma lo ia entra la racontas de marinores, en alga modo. Esce tu no ia nota ce la nervos de la ecipo ia pare alga ajitable oji?”
“Hardly. Even cannibals wouldn’t live in such a God-forsaken place. But it’s gotten into sailor lore, somehow. Didn’t you notice that the crew’s nerves seemed a bit jumpy today?”
“Los ia es alga nonusual, si, como tu dise. An capitan Nielsen —”
“They were a bit strange, now you mention it. Even Captain Nielsen —”
“Si, an acel svensce vea de mente durida, ci ta prosimi a la diablo mesma per demanda un ensende de el. Acel oios blu e pexin ia ave un aspeta cual me ia vide nunca ala. Tota cual me ia pote evoca de el ia es — ‘Esta loca ave un mal nom entre omes de la mar, senior.’ Alora el ia dise a me, multe grave — ‘Esce tu no senti alga cosa?’ — como si la aira sirca nos ia es vera venenosa. Alora, tu debe no rie cuando me raconta esta: me ia senti alga cosa como un fria subita.”
“Yes, even that tough-minded old Swede, who’d go up to the devil himself and ask him for a light. Those fishy blue eyes held a look I never saw there before. All I could get out of him was ‘This place has an evil name among seafaring men, sir.’ Then he said to me, very gravely, ‘Don’t you feel anything?’ — as if the air about us was actually poisonous. Now, you mustn’t laugh when I tell you this — I did feel something like a sudden chill.”
El continua — “On ia ave no venta. La mar ia es tan plata como un fenetra de vitro grande. Nos ia prosimi a la isola alora. Lo cual me ia senti ia es un — un fria mental, un tipo de teme subita.”
“There was no breeze. The sea was as flat as a plate-glass window. We were drawing near the island then. What I felt was a — a mental chill; a sort of sudden dread.”
“La imajina pur.” — Rainsford dise. “Un sola marinor superstisiosa pote infeta la ecipo intera de un barcon con sua teme.”
“Pure imagination,” said Rainsford. “One superstitious sailor can taint the whole ship’s company with his fear.”
“Cisa. Ma a veses me pensa ce marinores ave un sensa ajuntada cual indica a los lo cuando los es en peril. A veses me pensa ce la malia es un cosa palpable — con longias de onda, tal como la sona e la lus ave. Un loca de malia pote, on ta dise, transmete ondas de malia. An tal, me es felis ce nos sorti de esta zona. Alora, me pensa ce me retira aora, Rainsford.”
“Maybe. But sometimes I think sailors have an extra sense that tells them when they are in danger. Sometimes I think evil is a tangible thing — with wave lengths, just as sound and light have. An evil place can, so to speak, broadcast vibrations of evil. Anyhow, I’m glad we’re getting out of this zone. Well, I think I’ll turn in now, Rainsford.”
“Me no es dormosa.” — Rainsford dise. “Me va fumi un otra pipa a supra sur la nivel retro.”
“I’m not sleepy,” said Rainsford. “I’m going to smoke another pipe up on the afterdeck.”
“Bon note, alora, Rainsford. Asta la come de matina.”
“Good night, then, Rainsford. See you at breakfast.”
“Si. Bon note, Whitney.”
“Right. Good night, Whitney.”
On ave no sona en la note en cuando Rainsford senta ala, esetante la palpita amortida de la motor cual move rapida la iato tra la oscuria, e la pluf e salpica de la ondas seguente de la elica.
There was no sound in the night as Rainsford sat there but the muffled throb of the engine that drove the yacht swiftly through the darkness, and the swish and ripple of the wash of the propeller.
Rainsford, reclinante en un amaceta, enspira pigra de sua pipa favoreda. La dormosia lusosa de la note es sur el. “Lo es tan oscur” — el pensa — “ce me ta pote dormi sin clui mea oios; la note ta es mea palpebras — ”
Rainsford, reclining in a steamer chair, indolently puffed on his favorite brier. The sensuous drowsiness of the night was on him. “It’s so dark,” he thought, “that I could sleep without closing my eyes; the night would be my eyelids ”
Un sona subita surprende el. A distante a destra el oia lo, e sua oreas, esperta sur tal cosas, no pote es erante. Denova el oia la sona, e denova. A alga loca, a via en la negria, algun ia xuta un fusil a tre veses.
An abrupt sound startled him. Off to the right he heard it, and his ears, expert in such matters, could not be mistaken. Again he heard the sound, and again. Somewhere, off in the blackness, someone had fired a gun three times.
Rainsford leva saltante e move rapida a la rel, confondeda. El regarda con oios tensada en dirije a de cual la xutas ia veni, ma lo es como atenta vide tra un covreleto. El salta a sur la rel e ecuilibra se ala, per deveni plu alta; sua pipa, colpante un corda, cade de sua boca. El atenta saisi lo; un cria corta e roncin veni de sua labios en cuando el sensa ce el ia estende se tro longa e ia perde sua ecuilibra. La cria es cortida cuando la acuas tan calda como sangue de la Mar Caribean clui supra sua testa.
Rainsford sprang up and moved quickly to the rail, mystified. He strained his eyes in the direction from which the reports had come, but it was like trying to see through a blanket. He leaped upon the rail and balanced himself there, to get greater elevation; his pipe, striking a rope, was knocked from his mouth. He lunged for it; a short, hoarse cry came from his lips as he realized he had reached too far and had lost his balance. The cry was pinched off short as the blood-warm waters of the Caribbean Sea closed over his head.
El luta a la surfas e atenta clama, ma la ondas seguente de la iato rapida colpa el en la fas e la acua salin en sua boca abrida sofoca el. Desperante el nada con brasis forte en dirije a la lampas retirante de la iato, ma el sesa ante cuando el ia nada des-sinco metres. Un alga nonajitadia ia veni a el; esta no es la prima ves ce el ia es en peril. Lo es un posiblia ce sua crias pote es oiada par algun sur la iato, ma acel posiblia es pico e deveni plu pico en cuando la iato parti corsin. El desvesti lutante e cria con tota sua fortia. La lampas de la iato deveni lampetas debil e sempre diminuinte; alora los es tota asorbeda par la note.
He struggled up to the surface and tried to cry out, but the wash from the speeding yacht slapped him in the face and the salt water in his open mouth made him gag and strangle. Desperately he struck out with strong strokes after the receding lights of the yacht, but he stopped before he had swum fifty feet. A certain coolheadedness had come to him; it was not the first time he had been in a tight place. There was a chance that his cries could be heard by someone aboard the yacht, but that chance was slender and grew more slender as the yacht raced on. He wrestled himself out of his clothes and shouted with all his power. The lights of the yacht became faint and ever-vanishing fireflies; then they were blotted out entirely by the night.
Rainsford recorda la xutas. El ia veni de la destra, e el nada ostinosa en acel dirije, con brasis lenta e curante, conservante sua fortia. Tra un tempo parente sin fini, el luta contra la mar. El comensa conta sua brasis; cisa el pote fa sento plu e alora —
Rainsford remembered the shots. They had come from the right, and doggedly he swam in that direction, swimming with slow, deliberate strokes, conserving his strength. For a seemingly endless time he fought the sea. He began to count his strokes; he could do possibly a hundred more and then —
Rainsford oia un sona. Lo veni de la oscuria, un sona alta e xiliante, la sona de un animal en un estrema de angusa e teror.
Rainsford heard a sound. It came out of the darkness, a high screaming sound, the sound of an animal in an extremity of anguish and terror.
El no reconose la animal cual fa la sona; el no atenta; con vivosia fresca el nada en dirije a la sona. El oia lo denova; alora lo es cortida per un otra ruido cracosa e agu.
He did not recognize the animal that made the sound; he did not try to; with fresh vitality he swam toward the sound. He heard it again; then it was cut short by another noise, crisp, staccato.
“Un xuta de pistol.” — Rainsford murmura e continua nada.
“Pistol shot,” muttered Rainsford, swimming on.
Des minutos de fortia ostinosa trae un otra sona a sua oreas — la plu bonvenida cual el ia oia sempre — la murmura e ronca de la mar rompente sur un costa rocosa. El es cuasi sur la rocas ante cuando el vide los; a un note min calma el ta es fratida contra los. Con sua fortia restante el tira se de la acuas jirante. Presipes sierin pare protendente a supra a la opacia; el forsa se a alta, par mano pos mano. Con enspiras subita e manos despelida, el ateni un loca plata a la alta. Un jungla densa veni esata a la borda de la presipes. Cualce periles cual acel marania de arbores e subosce ta ave per el no preocupa Rainsford a la momento. Tota cual el sabe es ce el es secur de sua enemi, la mar, e ce fatiga completa es sur el. El lansa se a tera a la borda de la jungla e cade direta en la dormi la plu profonda de sua vive.
Ten minutes of determined effort brought another sound to his ears — the most welcome he had ever heard — the muttering and growling of the sea breaking on a rocky shore. He was almost on the rocks before he saw them; on a night less calm he would have been shattered against them. With his remaining strength he dragged himself from the swirling waters. Jagged crags appeared to jut up into the opaqueness; he forced himself upward, hand over hand. Gasping, his hands raw, he reached a flat place at the top. Dense jungle came down to the very edge of the cliffs. What perils that tangle of trees and underbrush might hold for him did not concern Rainsford just then. All he knew was that he was safe from his enemy, the sea, and that utter weariness was on him. He flung himself down at the jungle edge and tumbled headlong into the deepest sleep of his life.
Cuando el abri sua oios el sabe par la posa de la sol ce lo es tarda en la posmedia. La dormi ia dona a el un enerjia nova; un famia agu pica el. El regarda sirca se, cuasi felis.
When he opened his eyes he knew from the position of the sun that it was late in the afternoon. Sleep had given him new vigor; a sharp hunger was picking at him. He looked about him, almost cheerfully.
“Do on ave xutas de pistol, on ave omes. Do on ave omes, on ave comeda.” — el pensa. Ma cual tipo de omes, el vole sabe, en un loca tan repulsante? Un fronte sin interompe de jungla maraniada e ru borda la costa.
“Where there are pistol shots, there are men. Where there are men, there is food,” he thought. But what kind of men, he wondered, in so forbidding a place? An unbroken front of snarled and ragged jungle fringed the shore.
El vide no sinia de un curso tra la rede streta texeda de plantas e arbores; lo es plu fasil ce el vade longo la costa, e Rainsford pasea lutante longo la acua. Nondistante de la loca do el ia atera, el para.
He saw no sign of a trail through the closely knit web of weeds and trees; it was easier to go along the shore, and Rainsford floundered along by the water. Not far from where he landed, he stopped.
Un ferida — par la indicas, un animal grande — ia bate a sirca en la subosce; la plantas de jungla es craseda e la mos es laserada; un parte de plantas es tinjeda a carmesi. Un cosa peti e briliante saisi la oio de Rainsford e el prende lo de su. Lo es un cartux vacua.
Some wounded thing — by the evidence, a large animal — had thrashed about in the underbrush; the jungle weeds were crushed down and the moss was lacerated; one patch of weeds was stained crimson. A small, glittering object not far away caught Rainsford’s eye and he picked it up. It was an empty cartridge.
“Un 5.6 mm.” — el comenta. “Strana. Lo debe es ce lo ia es un animal alga grande ance. La xasor ia ave sua coraje con se per ataca lo con un fusil lejera. Lo es clar ce la bestia ia fa un batalia. Me suposa la prima tre xutas cual me ia oia ia es cuando la xasor ia fa ce sua xasada fuji e ia feri lo. La xuta ultima ia es cuando el ia segue lo a asi e ia fini lo.”
“A twenty-two,” he remarked. “That’s odd. It must have been a fairly large animal too. The hunter had his nerve with him to tackle it with a light gun. It’s clear that the brute put up a fight. I suppose the first three shots I heard was when the hunter flushed his quarry and wounded it. The last shot was when he trailed it here and finished it.”
El esamina atendosa la tera e trova lo cual el ia espera trova — la impresas de botas de xasa. Los punta longo la presipe en la dirije cual el vade ja. Zelosa el vade fretante, de ves a ves liscante sur un tronco putrida o un petra nonfisada, ma progresante; la note comensa reposa sur la isola.
He examined the ground closely and found what he had hoped to find — the print of hunting boots. They pointed along the cliff in the direction he had been going. Eagerly he hurried along, now slipping on a rotten log or a loose stone, but making headway; night was beginning to settle down on the island.
Oscuria sombre es en negri la mar e la jungla cuando Rainsford vide la lampas. El encontra los cuando el verje a un curva en la linia de costa; e sua pensa prima es ce el ia veni a un vileta, car on ave multe lampas. Ma en cuando el vade sua via, el vide a sua stona grande ce tota la lampas es en un sola construida enorme — un strutur alta con tores cual asende en la oscuria. Sua oios deteta la linias limitante de un cason palasin; lo es poneda sur un promontania alta, e sur tre lados de lo presipes desende agu a do la mar leca labios avar en la ombras.
Bleak darkness was blacking out the sea and jungle when Rainsford sighted the lights. He came upon them as he turned a crook in the coast line; and his first thought was that be had come upon a village, for there were many lights. But as he forged along he saw to his great astonishment that all the lights were in one enormous building — a lofty structure with pointed towers plunging upward into the gloom. His eyes made out the shadowy outlines of a palatial chateau; it was set on a high bluff, and on three sides of it cliffs dived down to where the sea licked greedy lips in the shadows.
“Miraje” — Rainsford pensa. Ma lo es no miraje, el descovre, cuando el abri la porton de fero alta e spinada. La grados de petra es sufisinte real; la porte masosa con un gargola mal suriente per bateporte es sufisinte real; ma supra tota de lo un aira de nonrealia pende.
“Mirage,” thought Rainsford. But it was no mirage, he found, when he opened the tall spiked iron gate. The stone steps were real enough; the massive door with a leering gargoyle for a knocker was real enough; yet above it all hung an air of unreality.
El leva la bateporte, e lo asende grinsente e rijida como si lo ia es usada nunca a ante. El lasa lo cade, e lo surprende el par sua fortia bumante. El pensa el oia pasos de interna; la porte resta cluida. Denova el leva la bateporte pesosa e lasa lo cade. La porte abri alora — tan subita como si lo es sur un mola — e Rainsford sta giniante en la rio de lus briliante e oro cual versa a estra. La cosa prima cual sua oios deteta es la om la plu grande cual Rainsford ia vide sempre — un vivente jigante, solida fada con barba negra asta la taie. En sua mano la om teni un revolver con canon longa, e el punta lo direta a la cor de Rainsford.
He lifted the knocker, and it creaked up stiffly, as if it had never before been used. He let it fall, and it startled him with its booming loudness. He thought he heard steps within; the door remained closed. Again Rainsford lifted the heavy knocker, and let it fall. The door opened then — opened as suddenly as if it were on a spring — and Rainsford stood blinking in the river of glaring gold light that poured out. The first thing Rainsford’s eyes discerned was the largest man Rainsford had ever seen — a gigantic creature, solidly made and black bearded to the waist. In his hand the man held a long-barreled revolver, and he was pointing it straight at Rainsford’s heart.
De la marania de barba du oios peti regarda Rainsford.
Out of the snarl of beard two small eyes regarded Rainsford.
“Ta ce tu no es ajitada.” — Rainsford dise, con un surie cual el espera es encantante. “Me es no furor. Me ia cade de un iato. Mea nom es Sanger Rainsford de la Site de New York.”
“Don’t be alarmed,” said Rainsford, with a smile which he hoped was disarming. “I’m no robber. I fell off a yacht. My name is Sanger Rainsford of New York City.”
La aspeta menasante en la oios no cambia. La revolver punta tan rijida como si la jigante ta es un sculta. El dona no sinia ce el comprende la parolas de Rainsford, o an ce el ia oia los. El es vestida en un uniforma — un uniforma negra e decorada con lana de Astrahan gris.
The menacing look in the eyes did not change. The revolver pointing as rigidly as if the giant were a statue. He gave no sign that he understood Rainsford’s words, or that he had even heard them. He was dressed in uniform — a black uniform trimmed with gray astrakhan.
“Me es Sanger Rainsford de New York.” — Rainsford comensa denova. “Me ia cade de un iato. Me es fame.”
“I’m Sanger Rainsford of New York,” Rainsford began again. “I fell off a yacht. I am hungry.”
La sola responde de la om es ce el leva con sua diton la martel de sua revolver. Alora Rainsford vide la mano libre de la om move a sua fronte en un saluta militar, e el vide ce el clica sua talones la un contra la otra e sta firma. Un otra om desende la grados larga de marmo, un om reta e magra en vestes de sera. El avansa a Rainsford e estende sua mano.
The man’s only answer was to raise with his thumb the hammer of his revolver. Then Rainsford saw the man’s free hand go to his forehead in a military salute, and he saw him click his heels together and stand at attention. Another man was coming down the broad marble steps, an erect, slender man in evening clothes. He advanced to Rainsford and held out his hand.
En un vose bon elevada, marcada par un pronunsia pico stranjer cual aumenta sua esatia e curantia, el dise — “Lo es un plaser e onora multe grande ce me bonveni sr Sanger Rainsford, la xasor selebrada, a mea casa.”
In a cultivated voice marked by a slight accent that gave it added precision and deliberateness, he said, “It is a very great pleasure and honor to welcome Mr. Sanger Rainsford, the celebrated hunter, to my home.”
Automata Rainsford presa la manos con la om.
Automatically Rainsford shook the man’s hand.
“Me ia leje tua libro sur xasa leopardos de neva en Tibet, tu vide.” — la om esplica. “Me es jeneral Zarof.”
“I’ve read your book about hunting snow leopards in Tibet, you see,” explained the man. “I am General Zaroff.”
La persepi prima de Rainsford es ce la om es unica bela; sua numero du es ce la fas de la jeneral ave un cualia orijinal, cuasi bizara. El es un om alta e pos eda media, car sua capeles es intensa blanca; ma sua suprasiles densa e mustax militar e agu es tan negra como la note de cual Rainsford ia veni. Sua oios, ance, es negra e multe briliante. El ave osos de jena alta, un nas agu, un fas oscur e magra — la fas de un om ci abitua comanda, la fas de un aristocrata. Turnante a la jigante uniformada, la jeneral fa un sinia. La jigante pone sua pistol a via, saluta, e sorti.
Rainsford’s first impression was that the man was singularly handsome; his second was that there was an original, almost bizarre quality about the general’s face. He was a tall man past middle age, for his hair was a vivid white; but his thick eyebrows and pointed military mustache were as black as the night from which Rainsford had come. His eyes, too, were black and very bright. He had high cheekbones, a sharpcut nose, a spare, dark face — the face of a man used to giving orders, the face of an aristocrat. Turning to the giant in uniform, the general made a sign. The giant put away his pistol, saluted, withdrew.
“Ivan es un om noncredable forte” — la jeneral comenta — “ma el ave la mal fortuna de es sorda e muda. Un om simple, ma, me teme, como tota sua rasa, alga un savaje.”
“Ivan is an incredibly strong fellow,” remarked the general, “but he has the misfortune to be deaf and dumb. A simple fellow, but, I’m afraid, like all his race, a bit of a savage.”
“Esce el es rusce?”
“Is he Russian?”
“El es un cosac.” — la jeneral dise, e sua surie mostra labios roja e dentes agu. “Ance me es.”
“He is a Cossack,” said the general, and his smile showed red lips and pointed teeth. “So am I.”
“Veni,” — el dise — “nos no ta debe conversa asi. Nos pote parla a pos. Aora tu desira vestes, comeda, reposa. Tu va ave los. Esta es un loca la plu repososa.”
“Come,” he said, “we shouldn’t be chatting here. We can talk later. Now you want clothes, food, rest. You shall have them. This is a most restful spot.”
Ivan ia reapare, e la jeneral parla a el con labios cual move ma emete no sona.
Ivan had reappeared, and the general spoke to him with lips that moved but gave forth no sound.
“Segue Ivan, si lo plase tu, sr Rainsford” — la jeneral dise. “Me ia es a punto de ave mea come de sera cuando tu ia veni. Me va pausa per espeta tu. Tu va trova ce mea vestes va conveni per tu, me pensa.”
“Follow Ivan, if you please, Mr. Rainsford,” said the general. “I was about to have my dinner when you came. I’ll wait for you. You’ll find that my clothes will fit you, I think.”
Lo es un sala de dormi enorme, con un sofito de faxon e un leto con baldacin cual es sufisinte grande per ses omes, a cual Rainsford segue la jigante silente. Ivan trae un completa de sera, e Rainsford, en cuando el apone lo, nota ce lo veni de un talior de London ci talia e cose usual per nun su la grado de duxe.
It was to a huge, beam-ceilinged bedroom with a canopied bed big enough for six men that Rainsford followed the silent giant. Ivan laid out an evening suit, and Rainsford, as he put it on, noticed that it came from a London tailor who ordinarily cut and sewed for none below the rank of duke.
La sala de come a cual Ivan gida el es en multe modos notable. On ave un gloriosia medieval sur lo; lo sujesta un salon baronal de edas feudal con sua paneles de cuerco, sua sofito alta, sua tables comunial vasta do cuatrodes omes ta pote senta per come. Sirca la salon on ave testas esibida de multe animales — leones, tigres, elefantes, alces, ursos; Rainsford ia vide nunca esemplos plu grande o plu perfeta. A la table vasta la jeneral senta solitar.
The dining room to which Ivan conducted him was in many ways remarkable. There was a medieval magnificence about it; it suggested a baronial hall of feudal times with its oaken panels, its high ceiling, its vast refectory tables where twoscore men could sit down to eat. About the hall were mounted heads of many animals — lions, tigers, elephants, moose, bears; larger or more perfect specimens Rainsford had never seen. At the great table the general was sitting, alone.
“Tu va ave un coctel, sr Rainsford” — el sujesta. La coctel es suprapasante bon; e, Rainsford nota, la furnis de table es de la plu bela — la lino, la cristal, la arjento, la porselana.
“You’ll have a cocktail, Mr. Rainsford,” he suggested. The cocktail was surpassingly good; and, Rainsford noted, the table apointments were of the finest — the linen, the crystal, the silver, the china.
Los come borxt, la sopa rica e roja con crema bateda cual es tan cara a palatos rusce. En modo dui escusante jeneral Zarof dise — “Nos fa nosa atentas la plu bon per manteni la plaseres de sivilia asi. Per favore pardona alga liscas. Nos es multe distante de la vias multe usada, tu sabe. Esce tu pensa ce la xampania ia sufri de sua viaja longa de mar?”
They were eating borsch, the rich, red soup with whipped cream so dear to Russian palates. Half apologetically General Zaroff said, “We do our best to preserve the amenities of civilization here. Please forgive any lapses. We are well off the beaten track, you know. Do you think the champagne has suffered from its long ocean trip?”
“No a la min.” — Rainsford proclama. El trova ce la jeneral es un ospitor la plu compatiosa e jentil, un internasional vera. Ma on ave un cualia peti de la jeneral cual descomforta Rainsford. A cada ves ce el leva sua regarda de sua plato, el trova la jeneral en studia el e evalua atendosa el.
“Not in the least,” declared Rainsford. He was finding the general a most thoughtful and affable host, a true cosmopolite. But there was one small trait of the general’s that made Rainsford uncomfortable. Whenever he looked up from his plate he found the general studying him, appraising him narrowly.
“Cisa” — jeneral Zarof dise — “tu ia es surprendeda ce me ia reconose tua nom. Tu vide, me leje tota la libros sur la xasa publicida en engles, franses, e rusce. Me ave un sola pasion en mea vive, sr Rainsford, e acel es la xasa.”
“Perhaps,” said General Zaroff, “you were surprised that I recognized your name. You see, I read all books on hunting published in English, French, and Russian. I have but one passion in my life, Mr. Rainsford, and it is the hunt.”
“Tu ave alga testas merveliosa asi.” — Rainsford dise en cuando el come un filete minion esata bon cosinida. “Acel bufalo african es la plu grande cual me ia vide a cualce ves.”
“You have some wonderful heads here,” said Rainsford as he ate a particularly well-cooked filet mignon. “That Cape buffalo is the largest I ever saw.”
“A, acel mas. Si, el es un monstro.”
“Oh, that fellow. Yes, he was a monster.”
“Esce el ia ataca tu?”
“Did he charge you?”
“Lo ia lansa me contra un arbor,” — la jeneral dise — “e ia frati mea cranio. Ma me ia prende la savaje.”
“Hurled me against a tree,” said the general. “Fractured my skull. But I got the brute.”
“Me pensa ja sempre” — Rainsford dise — “ce la bufalo african es la plu perilosa de tota la xasadas grande.”
“I’ve always thought,” said Rainsford, “that the Cape buffalo is the most dangerous of all big game.”
Per un momento la jeneral no responde; el surie sua surie strana con labios roja. Alora el dise lenta — “No. Tu era, senior. La bufalo african no es la xasada la plu perilosa.” El sorbe sua vino. “Asi en mea conserveria sur esta isola” — el dise en la mesma tono lenta — “me xasa un tipo plu perilosa.”
For a moment the general did not reply; he was smiling his curious red-lipped smile. Then he said slowly, “No. You are wrong, sir. The Cape buffalo is not the most dangerous big game.” He sipped his wine. “Here in my preserve on this island,” he said in the same slow tone, “I hunt more dangerous game.”
Rainsford espresa sua surprende. “Esce on ave xasadas grande sur esta isola?”
Rainsford expressed his surprise. “Is there big game on this island?”
La jeneral acorda con sua testa. “La plu grandes.”
The general nodded. “The biggest.”
“O, los no es asi par natur, evidente. Me debe furni los a la isola.”
“Oh, it isn’t here naturally, of course. I have to stock the island.”
“Cual tu emporta, jeneral?” — Rainsford demanda. “Tigres?”
“What have you imported, general?” Rainsford asked. “Tigers?”
La jeneral surie. “No.” — el dise. “La xasa de tigres ia sesa interesa me ante alga anios. Me ia consuma sua posiblias, tu vide. On ave no stimula restante en tigres, no peril real. Me vive per peril, sr Rainsford.”
The general smiled. “No,” he said. “Hunting tigers ceased to interest me some years ago. I exhausted their possibilities, you see. No thrill left in tigers, no real danger. I live for danger, Mr. Rainsford.”
La jeneral prende de sua pox un caxa orosa de sigareta e ofre a sua visitor un sigareta longa e negra con un fini arjento; lo es parfumida e emete un odor insensin.
The general took from his pocket a gold cigarette case and offered his guest a long black cigarette with a silver tip; it was perfumed and gave off a smell like incense.
“Nos va ave alga de xasa eselente, tu e me.” — la jeneral dise. “Me va es multe felis per tua acompania.”
“We will have some capital hunting, you and I,” said the general. “I shall be most glad to have your society.”
“Ma cual xasada — ” Rainsford comensa.
“But what game — ” began Rainsford.
“Me va dise a tu.” — la jeneral dise. “Tu va es divertida, me sabe. Me pensa ce me pote dise, con tota umilia, ce me ia fa un cosa rara. Me ia inventa un sensada nova. Permete ce me versa per tu un otra vitro de Porto?”
“I’ll tell you,” said the general. “You will be amused, I know. I think I may say, in all modesty, that I have done a rare thing. I have invented a new sensation. May I pour you another glass of port?”
“Thank you, general.”
La jeneral pleni ambos vitros, e dise — “Dio fa alga omes como poesistes. El fa alga como res, alga como mendicores. Me, el fa me como xasor. Mea mano es fada per la gatilio, mea padre ia dise. El ia es un om multe rica con cuatri milion acres en Crimea, e el ia es un sportor ardente. Cuando me ia ave mera sinco anios el ia dona a me un fusil peti, spesial fada en Moscva per me, per xuta pasaros. Cuando me ia xuta alga de sua pavos premiorin con lo, el no ia puni me; el loda me per mea xutoria. Me ia mata mea urso prima en Caucaso cuando me ave des anios. Mea vive tota es un sola xasa longida. Me ia entra la armada — lo ia es espetada de la fios de aristocratas — e per un tempo ia comanda un divide de cavalores cosac, ma mea interesa real ia es sempre la xasa. Me xasa ja cada spesie de xasada en cada pais. Lo ta es nonposible per me dise a tu cuanto animales me ia mati.”
The general filled both glasses, and said, “God makes some men poets. Some He makes kings, some beggars. Me He made a hunter. My hand was made for the trigger, my father said. He was a very rich man with a quarter of a million acres in the Crimea, and he was an ardent sportsman. When I was only five years old he gave me a little gun, specially made in Moscow for me, to shoot sparrows with. When I shot some of his prize turkeys with it, he did not punish me; he complimented me on my marksmanship. I killed my first bear in the Caucasus when I was ten. My whole life has been one prolonged hunt. I went into the army — it was expected of noblemen’s sons — and for a time commanded a division of Cossack cavalry, but my real interest was always the hunt. I have hunted every kind of game in every land. It would be impossible for me to tell you how many animals I have killed.”
La jeneral enspira de sua sigareta.
The general puffed at his cigarette.
“Pos la fiasco en Rusia me ia parti de la pais, car lo ia es noncauta ce un ofisior de la tsar resta ala. Multe arisocrates rusce ia perde cada cosa. Fortunosa, me ia investi ja en titulos finansial de America, donce nunca me va debe abri un sala de te en Monte Carlo o gida un taxi en Paris. Natural, me ia continua xasa — ursos gris en tua Rockies, crocodiles en la Ganga, rinoseros en Africa Este. Lo ia es en Africa ce la bufalo ia colpa me e ia restrinje me a leto per ses menses. Direta pos cuando me ia recovre me ia vade a la Amazonas per xasa jaguares, car me ia oia ja ce los es multe astuta. Los no ia es.” La cosac suspira. “Los ia es tota no egal a un xasor vijilante e sua fusil de potia alta. Me ia es amarga deludeda. Me ia reclina en mea tenda a alga note con un dole de testa fendente cuando un pensa asustante ia entra mea mente. La xasa ia comensa noia me! E la xasa, recorda, ia es ja mea vive. On dise ce en America a multe veses comersiores desintegra cuando los abandona la comersia cual ia es la sua vive.”
“After the debacle in Russia I left the country, for it was imprudent for an officer of the Czar to stay there. Many noble Russians lost everything. I, luckily, had invested heavily in American securities, so I shall never have to open a tearoom in Monte Carlo or drive a taxi in Paris. Naturally, I continued to hunt — grizzlies in your Rockies, crocodiles in the Ganges, rhinoceroses in East Africa. It was in Africa that the Cape buffalo hit me and laid me up for six months. As soon as I recovered I started for the Amazon to hunt jaguars, for I had heard they were unusually cunning. They weren’t.” The Cossack sighed. “They were no match at all for a hunter with his wits about him, and a high-powered rifle. I was bitterly disappointed. I was lying in my tent with a splitting headache one night when a terrible thought pushed its way into my mind. Hunting was beginning to bore me! And hunting, remember, had been my life. I have heard that in America businessmen often go to pieces when they give up the business that has been their life.”
“Si, acel es vera.” — Rainsford dise.
“Yes, that’s so,” said Rainsford.
La jeneral surie. “Me ia ave no desira per desintegra.” — el dise. “Me ia debe fa alga cosa. Alora, me ave un mente analisal, sr Rainsford. Sin duta acel es perce me gusta la problemes de la xasa.”
The general smiled. “I had no wish to go to pieces,” he said. “I must do something. Now, mine is an analytical mind, Mr. Rainsford. Doubtless that is why I enjoy the problems of the chase.”
“Sin duta, jeneral Zarof.”
“No doubt, General Zaroff.”
“Donce,” — la jeneral continua — “me demanda de me perce la xasa ia fasina me no plu. Tu es multe plu joven ca me, sr Rainsford, e no ia xasa tan multe, ma cisa tu pote divina la responde.”
“So,” continued the general, “I asked myself why the hunt no longer fascinated me. You are much younger than I am, Mr. Rainsford, and have not hunted as much, but you perhaps can guess the answer.”
“Cual ia es?”
“What was it?”
“Simple esta: la xasa ia sesa es un risca. Lo ia deveni tro fasil. Me ia gania sempre mea xasada. Sempre. On ave no noia plu grande ca perfetia.”
“Simply this: hunting had ceased to be what you call `a sporting proposition.’ It had become too easy. I always got my quarry. Always. There is no greater bore than perfection.”
La jeneral ensende un sigareta fresca.
The general lit a fresh cigarette.
“No animal ia ave plu un oportun con me. Acel es no vanta; lo es un serta matematical. La animal ia ave no cosa estra sua gamas e sua instinto. Instinto es no egal a razona. Lo cuando me ia pensa de esta ia es un momento trajedial per me, me pote dise a tu.”
“No animal had a chance with me any more. That is no boast; it is a mathematical certainty. The animal had nothing but his legs and his instinct. Instinct is no match for reason. When I thought of this it was a tragic moment for me, I can tell you.”
Rainsford apoia supra la table, tota atendente a cual sua ospitor dise.
Rainsford leaned across the table, absorbed in what his host was saying.
“Lo ia veni a me como un inspira, lo cual me debe fa.” — la jeneral continua.
“It came to me as an inspiration what I must do,” the general went on.
“E acel ia es?”
“And that was?”
La jeneral surie la surie cuieta de on ci ia fasa un impedi e ia vinse lo susedente. “Me ia debe inventa un animal nova per xasa.” — el dise.
The general smiled the quiet smile of one who has faced an obstacle and surmounted it with success. “I had to invent a new animal to hunt,” he said.
“Un animal nova? Tu broma.” “Tota no.” — la jeneral dise. “Me broma nunca sur xasa. Me ia nesesa un animal nova. Me ia trova un. Donce me ia compra esta isola, ia construi esta casa, e asi me fa mea xasa. La isola es perfeta per mea usas — on ave junglas con un labirinto de cualias en los, colinas, pantanes —”
“A new animal? You’re joking.” “Not at all,” said the general. “I never joke about hunting. I needed a new animal. I found one. So I bought this island built this house, and here I do my hunting. The island is perfect for my purposes — there are jungles with a maze of traits in them, hills, swamps — ”
“Ma la animal, jeneral Zarof?”
“But the animal, General Zaroff?”
“O,” — la jeneral dise — “lo furni me con la xasa la plu stimulante en la mundo. No otra xasa compara con lo per un momento. A cada dia me xasa, e me deveni nunca noiada aora, car me ave un xasada con cual me pote fa un max de astutia.”
“Oh,” said the general, “it supplies me with the most exciting hunting in the world. No other hunting compares with it for an instant. Every day I hunt, and I never grow bored now, for I have a quarry with which I can match my wits.”
La confusa de Rainsford mostra en sua fas.
Rainsford’s bewilderment showed in his face.
“Me ia vole la animal ideal per xasa.” — la jeneral esplica. “Donce me ia dise — ‘Cual es la cualias de un xasada ideal?’ E la responde, natural, ia es — ‘Lo debe ave coraje, astutia, e, supra tota, lo debe pote razona.’”
“I wanted the ideal animal to hunt,” explained the general. “So I said, ‘What are the attributes of an ideal quarry?’ And the answer was, of course, ‘It must have courage, cunning, and, above all, it must be able to reason.’”
“Ma no animal pote razona.” — Rainsford oposa.
“But no animal can reason,” objected Rainsford.
“Mea cara bonom,” — la jeneral dise — “on ave un cual pote.”
“My dear fellow,” said the general, “there is one that can.”
“Ma tu no vole dise —” — Rainsford dise stonada.
“But you can’t mean —” gasped Rainsford.
“E perce no?”
“And why not?”
“Me no pote crede ce tu es seria, jeneral Zarof. Esta es un broma repulsante.”
“I can’t believe you are serious, General Zaroff. This is a grisly joke.”
“Perce me no debe es seria? Me parla sur xasa.”
“Why should I not be serious? I am speaking of hunting.”
“Xasa? Cual de enferno, jeneral Zarof, lo de cual tu parla es asasina.”
“Hunting? Great Guns, General Zaroff, what you speak of is murder.”
La jeneral rie tota amable. El regarda Rainsford con considera. “Me refusa crede ce un om joven tan moderna e sivilida como tu pare, ta refuja ideas romantica sur la valua de la vive umana. Serta tua esperias en la gera —”
The general laughed with entire good nature. He regarded Rainsford quizzically. “I refuse to believe that so modern and civilized a young man as you seem to be harbors romantic ideas about the value of human life. Surely your experiences in the war —”
“— no ia fa ce me aseta asasina con sangue fria.” — Rainsford fini rijida.
“Did not make me condone cold-blooded murder,” finished Rainsford stiffly.
La rie secute la jeneral. “Tu es tan estracomun divertinte!” — el dise. “On no espeta a esta dias trova un om joven de la clase instruida, an en America, con un punto de vista tan naive, e, me ta dise, media victorian. Lo es como trova un caxa de ensoflable en un auto de luso. A, bon, sin duta tu ia ave asendentes puritan, como parente tan multe americanes. Me va aposta ce tu va oblida tua ideas cuando tu xasa con me. Tu ave un stimula vera nova per tua espeta, sr Rainsford.”
Laughter shook the general. “How extraordinarily droll you are!” he said. “One does not expect nowadays to find a young man of the educated class, even in America, with such a naive, and, if I may say so, mid-Victorian point of view. It’s like finding a snuffbox in a limousine. Ah, well, doubtless you had Puritan ancestors. So many Americans appear to have had. I’ll wager you’ll forget your notions when you go hunting with me. You’ve a genuine new thrill in store for you, Mr. Rainsford.”
“Grasias, me es un xasor, no un asasinor.”
“Thank you, I’m a hunter, not a murderer.”
“Ai me,” — la jeneral dise, multe nonturbada — “denova acel parola nonplasente. Ma me pensa ce me pote mostra a tu ce tu dutas es multe mal fundida.”
“Dear me,” said the general, quite unruffled, “again that unpleasant word. But I think I can show you that your scruples are quite ill founded.”
“La vive es per la fortes, per es viveda par la fortes, e, si nesesa, prendeda par la fortes. La debiles de la mundo ia es poneda asi per dona plaser a la fortes. Me es forte. Perce me debe no usa mea donada? Si me vole xasa, perce me debe no fa? Me xasa la melma de la mundo: marinores de barcones vagante — indianes, negras, xineses, blancas, miscadas — un cavalo o can de linia pur ave plu valua ca dudes de los.”
“Life is for the strong, to be lived by the strong, and, if needs be, taken by the strong. The weak of the world were put here to give the strong pleasure. I am strong. Why should I not use my gift? If I wish to hunt, why should I not? I hunt the scum of the earth: sailors from tramp ships — lascars, blacks, Chinese, whites, mongrels — a thoroughbred horse or hound is worth more than a score of them.”
“Ma los es omes.” — Rainsford dise calda.
“But they are men,” said Rainsford hotly.
“Esata.” — la jeneral dise. “Acel es perce me usa los. Lo dona plaser a me. Los pote razona, a alga grado. Donce los es perilosa.”
“Precisely,” said the general. “That is why I use them. It gives me pleasure. They can reason, after a fashion. So they are dangerous.”
“Ma do tu oteni los?”
“But where do you get them?”
La palpebra sinistra de la jeneral ginia ondetante. “Esta isola es nomida Trapibarcon.” — el responde. “A veses un dio coler de la mares alta envia los a me. A veses, cuando Favore Divin es no tan amante, me aida pico Favore Divin. Veni a la fenetra con me.”
The general’s left eyelid fluttered down in a wink. “This island is called Ship Trap,” he answered. “Sometimes an angry god of the high seas sends them to me. Sometimes, when Providence is not so kind, I help Providence a bit. Come to the window with me.”
Rainsford vade a la fenetra e regarda a la mar.
Rainsford went to the window and looked out toward the sea.
“Regarda! A ala!” — la jeneral esclama, puntante a en la note. La oios de Rainsford vide sola negria, e alora, cuando la jeneral presa un boton, a distante en la mar Rainsford vide la flaxi de lampas.
“Watch! Out there!” exclaimed the general, pointing into the night. Rainsford’s eyes saw only blackness, and then, as the general pressed a button, far out to sea Rainsford saw the flash of lights.
La jeneral cacareta. “Los indica un canal” — el dise — “do on no ave un; roces jigante con bordas lamin acrupi como un monstro de mar con mandibulas larga abrida. Los pote crase un barcon tan fasil como me crase esta noza.” El cade un noza a la solo de lenio dur e presa molente lo con sua talon. “A, si,” — el dise casual, como si en responde a un demanda — “me ave eletrica. Nos atenta es sivilida asi.”
The general chuckled. “They indicate a channel,” he said, “where there’s none; giant rocks with razor edges crouch like a sea monster with wide-open jaws. They can crush a ship as easily as I crush this nut.” He dropped a walnut on the hardwood floor and brought his heel grinding down on it. “Oh, yes,” he said, casually, as if in answer to a question, “I have electricity. We try to be civilized here.”
“Sivilida? E tu fusili omes?”
“Civilized? And you shoot down men?”
Un pico de coler es en la oios negra de la jeneral, ma lo es mera ala per un secondo; e el dise, en sua modo la plu plasente, “Ai me, tan un om joven e virtuosa es tu! Me serti a tu ce me no fa la cosa cual tu sujesta. Acel ta es barbar. Me trata esta visitores con cada compati. Los reseta un abunda de bon comeda e eserse. Sua state corpal deveni eselente. Tu va vide per tu mesma doman.”
A trace of anger was in the general’s black eyes, but it was there for but a second; and he said, in his most pleasant manner, “Dear me, what a righteous young man you are! I assure you I do not do the thing you suggest. That would be barbarous. I treat these visitors with every consideration. They get plenty of good food and exercise. They get into splendid physical condition. You shall see for yourself tomorrow.”
“Cual tu vole dise?”
“What do you mean?”
“Nos va visita mea scola de instrui.” — la jeneral dise suriente. “Lo es en la sutera. Me ave aora sirca un desduple de studiantes a su. Los es de la barcon espaniol San Lucar cual ia ave la mal fortuna de vade sur la rocas a estra. Un grupo multe inferior, me regrete. Mal esemplos e plu abituada a la nivel ca a la jungla.” El leva sua mano, e Ivan, como la servor, trae cafe turces densa. Rainsford, con labora, freni sua lingua.
“We’ll visit my training school,” smiled the general. “It’s in the cellar. I have about a dozen pupils down there now. They’re from the Spanish bark San Lucar that had the bad luck to go on the rocks out there. A very inferior lot, I regret to say. Poor specimens and more accustomed to the deck than to the jungle.” He raised his hand, and Ivan, who served as waiter, brought thick Turkish coffee. Rainsford, with an effort, held his tongue in check.
“Lo es un jua, tu vide.” — la jeneral continua blanda. “Me sujesta a un de los ce nos vade per xasa. Me dona a el un furni de comeda e un cotel de xasa eselente. Me dona a el un vantaje de tre oras. Me debe segue, armada sola con un pistol de diametre e estende la plu peti. Si mea xasada evita me per tre dias intera, el gania la jua. Si me trova el,” — la jeneral surie — “el perde.”
“It’s a game, you see,” pursued the general blandly. “I suggest to one of them that we go hunting. I give him a supply of food and an excellent hunting knife. I give him three hours’ start. I am to follow, armed only with a pistol of the smallest caliber and range. If my quarry eludes me for three whole days, he wins the game. If I find him” — the general smiled — “he loses.”
“E si el refusa es xasada?”
“Suppose he refuses to be hunted?”
“O,” — la jeneral dise — “me dona a el sua eleje, natural. El no debe jua si el no vole. Ma si el no vole xasa, me dona sua cura a Ivan. A un ves Ivan ia ave la onora de la posto de flajelor ofisial per la Grande Tsar Blanca, e el ave sua propre ideas de sporte. Nonvariable, sr Rainsford, nonvariable los eleje la xasa.”
“Oh,” said the general, “I give him his option, of course. He need not play that game if he doesn’t wish to. If he does not wish to hunt, I turn him over to Ivan. Ivan once had the honor of serving as official knouter to the Great White Czar, and he has his own ideas of sport. Invariably, Mr. Rainsford, invariably they choose the hunt.”
“E si los gania?”
“And if they win?”
La surie sur la fas de la jeneral largi. “Asta aora me no perde.” — el dise. Alora el ajunta fretante — “Me no vole ce tu pensa me es un vantor, sr Rainsford. Multe de los ofre sola un tipo la plu simple de problem. A veses me trova un dur. Un de los ia gania cuasi. Final me ia debe usa la canes.”
The smile on the general’s face widened. “To date I have not lost,” he said. Then he added, hastily: “I don’t wish you to think me a braggart, Mr. Rainsford. Many of them afford only the most elementary sort of problem. Occasionally I strike a tartar. One almost did win. I eventually had to use the dogs.”
“A esta via, per favore. Me va mostra a tu.”
“This way, please. I’ll show you.”
La jeneral gida Rainsford a un fenetra. La lampas tra la fenetras emete un lumina vibrante cual fa motifes asustante sur la patio a su, e Rainsford pote vide ala sirca un desduple de formas negra e enorme e movente; cuando los turna a el, sua oios brilia verde.
The general steered Rainsford to a window. The lights from the windows sent a flickering illumination that made grotesque patterns on the courtyard below, and Rainsford could see moving about there a dozen or so huge black shapes; as they turned toward him, their eyes glittered greenly.
“Un manada alga bon, me pensa.” — la jeneral oserva. “Los es lasada a estra a la ora sete a cada note. Si algun ta atenta entra mea casa — o sorti — alga cosa estrema regretable ta aveni a el.” El zumbi un pico de canta de la Folies Bergere.
“A rather good lot, I think,” observed the general. “They are let out at seven every night. If anyone should try to get into my house — or out of it — something extremely regrettable would occur to him.” He hummed a snatch of song from the Folies Bergere.
“E aora,” — la jeneral dise — “me vole mostra a tu mea colie nova de testas. Esce tu va veni con me a la biblioteca?”
“And now,” said the general, “I want to show you my new collection of heads. Will you come with me to the library?”
“Me espera” — Rainsford dise — “ce tu va escusa me a esta sera, jeneral Zarof. Vera me no senti bon.”
“I hope,” said Rainsford, “that you will excuse me tonight, General Zaroff. I’m really not feeling well.”
“A, vera?” — la jeneral demanda curosa. “Alora, me suposa acel es tota natural, pos tua nada longa. Tu nesesa un note de dormi bon e reposante. Doman tu va senti como un om nova, me aposta. Alora nos va xasa, no? Me ave un posible alga prometente — ” Rainsford es en sorti fretante de la sala.
“Ah, indeed?” the general inquired solicitously. “Well, I suppose that’s only natural, after your long swim. You need a good, restful night’s sleep. Tomorrow you’ll feel like a new man, I’ll wager. Then we’ll hunt, eh? I’ve one rather promising prospect — ” Rainsford was hurrying from the room.
“Me regrete ce tu no pote vade con me a esta note” — la jeneral clama. “Me espeta un diverti alga bon — un negra grande e forte. El aspeta recursosa — alora, bon note, sr Rainsford; me espera ce tu ave un note de bon reposa.”
“Sorry you can’t go with me tonight,” called the general. “I expect rather fair sport — a big, strong, black. He looks resourceful — Well, good night, Mr. Rainsford; I hope you have a good night’s rest.”
La leto es bon, e la pijama es de seda la plu suave, e el es fatigada en cada fibre de sua esente, ma ancora Rainsford no pote cuieti sua mente con la opio de dormi. El reclina con oios larga abrida. A un ves el pensa ce el oia pasos cuieta en la coredor estra sua sala. El atenta abri la porte; lo no abri. El vade a la fenetra e regarda a estra. Sua sala es alta en un de la tores. La lampas de la cason es estinguida aora, e a estra lo es oscur e silente; ma on ave un frato de luna susia jala, e par sua lus pal el pote vide oscur la patio. Ala, texente a en e a estra en la trama de ombra, on ave formas negra sin ruido; la canes oia el a la fenetra e regarda a supra, espetante, con sua oios verde. Rainsford reveni a la leto e reclina. Par multe metodos el atenta dormi se. El ateni apena un dormeta cuando, direta cuando la matina comensa veni, el oia, de multe distante en la jungla, la xuta cuieta de un pistol.
The bed was good, and the pajamas of the softest silk, and he was tired in every fiber of his being, but nevertheless Rainsford could not quiet his brain with the opiate of sleep. He lay, eyes wide open. Once he thought he heard stealthy steps in the corridor outside his room. He sought to throw open the door; it would not open. He went to the window and looked out. His room was high up in one of the towers. The lights of the chateau were out now, and it was dark and silent; but there was a fragment of sallow moon, and by its wan light he could see, dimly, the courtyard. There, weaving in and out in the pattern of shadow, were black, noiseless forms; the hounds heard him at the window and looked up, expectantly, with their green eyes. Rainsford went back to the bed and lay down. By many methods he tried to put himself to sleep. He had achieved a doze when, just as morning began to come, he heard, far off in the jungle, the faint report of a pistol.
General Zarof no apare asta la come media. El es vestida sin falta en la tuides de un senior campanial. El es curosa sur la state de sana de Rainsford.
General Zaroff did not appear until luncheon. He was dressed faultlessly in the tweeds of a country squire. He was solicitous about the state of Rainsford’s health.
“Sur me,” — la jeneral dise suspirante — “me ne senti multe bon. Me es ansiosa, sr Rainsford. A note ier me ia deteta picos de mea maladia vea.”
“As for me,” sighed the general, “I do not feel so well. I am worried, Mr. Rainsford. Last night I detected traces of my old complaint.”
A la regardeta demandante de Rainsford la jeneral dise — “Nonsasia. Noia.”
To Rainsford’s questioning glance the general said, “Ennui. Boredom.”
Alora, en prende un comparti du de crêpes Suzette, la jeneral esplica — “La xasa no ia es bon a note ier. La om ia perde sua testa. El ia fa un trasa reta cual presenta tota no problemes. Acel es la problem con esta marinores; los ave serebros nonagu a prima, e los no sabe lo como move en la foresta. Los fa cosas tro multe stupida e evidente. Lo es la plu iritante. Esce tu va ave un otra vitro de Chablis, sr Rainsford?”
Then, taking a second helping of crêpes Suzette, the general explained: “The hunting was not good last night. The fellow lost his head. He made a straight trail that offered no problems at all. That’s the trouble with these sailors; they have dull brains to begin with, and they do not know how to get about in the woods. They do excessively stupid and obvious things. It’s most annoying. Will you have another glass of Chablis, Mr. Rainsford?”
“Jeneral,” — Rainsford dise firma — “me desira parti direta de esta isola.”
“General,” said Rainsford firmly, “I wish to leave this island at once.”
La jeneral leva sua maranias de suprasiles; el pare turbada. “Ma, mea cara bonom,” — la general protesta — “tu es a fini de ariva. Tu ia ave no xasa — ”
The general raised his thickets of eyebrows; he seemed hurt. “But, my dear fellow,” the general protested, “you’ve only just come. You’ve had no hunting — ”
“Me vole vade oji.” — Rainsford dise. El vide la oios mor negra de la jeneral sur el, studiante el. La fas de jeneral Zarof lumina subita.
“I wish to go today,” said Rainsford. He saw the dead black eyes of the general on him, studying him. General Zaroff’s face suddenly brightened.
El pleni la vitro de Rainsford con Chablis respetada de un botela polvosa.
He filled Rainsford’s glass with venerable Chablis from a dusty bottle.
“A sera oji” — la jeneral dise — “nos xasa — tu e me.”
“Tonight,” said the general, “we will hunt — you and I.”
Rainsford nega con sua testa. “No, jeneral.” — el dise. “Me no va xasa.”
Rainsford shook his head. “No, general,” he said. “I will not hunt.”
La jeneral leva sua spalas e come delicata un uva de inverneria. “Como tu vole, mea ami.” — el dise. “La eleje resta tota con tu. Ma esce me no sujesta ce tu va trova mea idea de sporte como plu divertinte ca acel de Ivan?”
The general shrugged his shoulders and delicately ate a hothouse grape. “As you wish, my friend,” he said. “The choice rests entirely with you. But may I not venture to suggest that you will find my idea of sport more diverting than Ivan’s?”
El inclina sua testa a la angulo do la jigante sta, grimante, con ce sua brasos spesa es crusada sur sua baril de peto.
He nodded toward the corner to where the giant stood, scowling, his thick arms crossed on his hogshead of chest.
“Tu no vole dise —” — Rainsford cria.
“You don’t mean —” cried Rainsford.
“Mea cara om,” — la jeneral dise — “esce me no ia dise a tu ce me intende sempre lo cual me dise sur la xasa? Esta es vera un inspira. Me bevi a un oposor ci merita mea aser — final.” La jeneral leva sua vitro, ma Rainsford senta en regarda intensa el.
“My dear fellow,” said the general, “have I not told you I always mean what I say about hunting? This is really an inspiration. I drink to a foeman worthy of my steel — at last.” The general raised his glass, but Rainsford sat staring at him.
“Tu va trova esta compete merita es juada.” — la jeneral dise zelosa. “Tua serebro contra la mea. Tua capasia forestal contra la mea. Tua fortia e dura contra la mea. La xace estra casa! E la apostada no es sin valua, si?”
“You’ll find this game worth playing,” the general said enthusiastically. “Your brain against mine. Your woodcraft against mine. Your strength and stamina against mine. Outdoor chess! And the stake is not without value, eh?”
“E si me gania —” Rainsford comensa roncin.
“And if I win —” began Rainsford huskily.
“Me va reconose felis mea defeta si me no trova tu ante medianote de la dia tre.” — jeneral Zarof dise. “Mea barco de vela va pone tu sur la continente a prosima de un vila.” La jeneral leje lo cual Rainsford pensa.
“I’ll cheerfully acknowledge myself defeat if I do not find you by midnight of the third day,” said General Zaroff. “My sloop will place you on the mainland near a town.” The general read what Rainsford was thinking.
“O, tu pote fida me” — la cosac dise. “Me va dona a tu mea parola como un senior e un sportor. Natural tu, corespondente, debe acorda dise no cosa sur tua visita asi.”
“Oh, you can trust me,” said the Cossack. “I will give you my word as a gentleman and a sportsman. Of course you, in turn, must agree to say nothing of your visit here.”
“Me va acorda a no cosa de la tipo.” — Rainsford dise.
“I’ll agree to nothing of the kind,” said Rainsford.
“O,” — la jeneral dise, “a acel caso — ma perce discute acel aora? Pos tre dias nos pote discute lo con un botela de Veuve Cliquot, estra si —”
“Oh,” said the general, “in that case — But why discuss that now? Three days hence we can discuss it over a bottle of Veuve Cliquot, unless —”
La jeneral sorbe sua vino.
The general sipped his wine.
Alora un umor pratical anima el. “Ivan” — el dise a Rainsford — “va furni a tu vestes de xasa, comeda, un cotel. Me sujesta ce tu porta mocasines; los lasa un trasa min bon. Me sujesta, ance, ce tu evita la pantan grande a la angulo sude-este de la isola. Nos nomi lo la Pantan de Moria. On ave arena movente ala. Un om fol ia atenta lo. La parte deplorable de lo ia es ce Lazaro ia segue el. Tu pote imajina mea sentis, sr Rainsford. Me ia ama Lazaro; el ia es la can la plu eselente en mea manada. Bon, tu debe pardona me aora. Me fa sempre un dormeta pos la come media. Tu va ave apena la tempo per un dormeta, me teme. Tu va vole comensa, sin duta. Me no va segue ante noti. La xasa en la note es tan plu stimulante ca en la dia, esce tu no pensa? Au revoir, sr Rainsford, au revoir.” Jeneral Zarof, con un inclina profonda e cortal, pasea lenta de la sala.
Then a businesslike air animated him. “Ivan,” he said to Rainsford, “will supply you with hunting clothes, food, a knife. I suggest you wear moccasins; they leave a poorer trail. I suggest, too, that you avoid the big swamp in the southeast corner of the island. We call it Death Swamp. There’s quicksand there. One foolish fellow tried it. The deplorable part of it was that Lazarus followed him. You can imagine my feelings, Mr. Rainsford. I loved Lazarus; he was the finest hound in my pack. Well, I must beg you to excuse me now. I always take a siesta after lunch. You’ll hardly have time for a nap, I fear. You’ll want to start, no doubt. I shall not follow till dusk. Hunting at night is so much more exciting than by day, don’t you think? Au revoir, Mr. Rainsford, au revoir.” General Zaroff, with a deep, courtly bow, strolled from the room.
De un otra porte Ivan veni. Su un braso el porta vestes de xasa caci, un bolson de comeda, un gaina de cuoro conteninte un cotel de xasa con lama longa; sua mano destra resta sur un revolver preparada cual es puxada en la xarpe carmesi sirca sua taie.
From another door came Ivan. Under one arm he carried khaki hunting clothes, a haversack of food, a leather sheath containing a long-bladed hunting knife; his right hand rested on a cocked revolver thrust in the crimson sash about his waist.
Rainsford vade ja lutante a sua via tra la subosce tra du oras. “Me debe manteni mea coraje. Me debe manteni mea coraje.” — el dise tra dentes streta.
Rainsford had fought his way through the bush for two hours. “I must keep my nerve. I must keep my nerve,” he said through tight teeth.
El no ia es tota clar pensante cuando la portones de cason clui agu ante el. Sua idea intera a prima ia es ce el pone la distantia entre se mesma e jeneral Zarof, e, a esta ojeto, el ia lansa se a longo, speronida par la roladores agu de alga cosa multe como panica. Aora el ia recovre sua autocontrola, ia para, e evalua atendosa se mesma e la situa. El vide ce la fuji direta es futil; nonevitable lo ta porta el a fas a fas con la mar. El es en un pitur con un moldur de acua, e sua operas, clar, debe aveni en acel moldur.
He had not been entirely clearheaded when the chateau gates snapped shut behind him. His whole idea at first was to put distance between himself and General Zaroff; and, to this end, he had plunged along, spurred on by the sharp rowers of something very like panic. Now he had got a grip on himself, had stopped, and was taking stock of himself and the situation. He saw that straight flight was futile; inevitably it would bring him face to face with the sea. He was in a picture with a frame of water, and his operations, clearly, must take place within that frame.
“Me va dona el un trasa per segue.” — Rainsford murmura, e el diverje de la curso bruta cual el ia segue a en la tera savaje e sin curso. El esecuta un serie de sicles complicada; el dupli sur sua curso denova e denova, recordante tota la sabe de la xasa per volpe, e tota la ruses de la volpe. La nota trova ce el es fatigada de gama, con manos e fas flajelida par ramos, sur un cresta con bosce densa. El sabe ce lo ta es demente ce el ta bambola tra la oscuria, an si el ta ave la fortia. Sua nesesa per reposa es comandante e el pensa — “Me ia finje la volpe, aora me debe finje la gato de la fable.” Un arbor grande con un tronco spesa e ramos estendeda es prosima, e, en atende no lasa an un marca, el asende trepante a en la force, e, estendente se sur un de la ramos larga, en alga modo, el reposa. La reposa trae a el confida nova e cuasi un senti de securia. An un xasor tan zelosa como jeneral Zarof no pote segue el a asi, el dise a se; sola la diablo mesma pote segue acel curso complicada tra la jungla en la note. Ma cisa la jeneral es un diablo —
“I’ll give him a trail to follow,” muttered Rainsford, and he struck off from the rude path he had been following into the trackless wilderness. He executed a series of intricate loops; he doubled on his trail again and again, recalling all the lore of the fox hunt, and all the dodges of the fox. Night found him leg-weary, with hands and face lashed by the branches, on a thickly wooded ridge. He knew it would be insane to blunder on through the dark, even if he had the strength. His need for rest was imperative and he thought, “I have played the fox, now I must play the cat of the fable.” A big tree with a thick trunk and outspread branches was near by, and, taking care to leave not the slightest mark, he climbed up into the crotch, and, stretching out on one of the broad limbs, after a fashion, rested. Rest brought him new confidence and almost a feeling of security. Even so zealous a hunter as General Zaroff could not trace him there, he told himself; only the devil himself could follow that complicated trail through the jungle after dark. But perhaps the general was a devil —
Un note ansiosa pasa lenta rampente como un serpe ferida e la dormi no visita Rainsford, an si la silentia de un mundo mor es sur la jungla. Alga ante la matina, cuando un gris sombre vernisi la sielos, la cria de alga avia surprendeda foca la atende de Rainsform a acel dirije. Alga cosa veni tra la subosce, veninte lenta, curante, veninte par la mesma via serpentin cual Rainsford ia veni. El plati se a su sur la ramo e, tra un scermo de folias cuasi tan densa como tapeto, el regarda. … La prosiminte es un om.
An apprehensive night crawled slowly by like a wounded snake and sleep did not visit Rainsford, although the silence of a dead world was on the jungle. Toward morning when a dingy gray was varnishing the sky, the cry of some startled bird focused Rainsford’s attention in that direction. Something was coming through the bush, coming slowly, carefully, coming by the same winding way Rainsford had come. He flattened himself down on the limb and, through a screen of leaves almost as thick as tapestry, he watched. … That which was approaching was a man.
Lo es jeneral Zarof. El vade sur sua via a longo con sua oios fisada con consentra estrema sur la tera ante el. El pausa, cuasi su la arbor, cade a sua jenos e studia la tera. La impulsa de Rainsford es per lansa se a su como un pantera, ma el vide ce la mano destra de la jeneral teni alga cosa metalin — un pistol automata e pico.
It was General Zaroff. He made his way along with his eyes fixed in utmost concentration on the ground before him. He paused, almost beneath the tree, dropped to his knees and studied the ground. Rainsford’s impulse was to hurl himself down like a panther, but he saw that the general’s right hand held something metallic — a small automatic pistol.
La xasor nega con sua testa a alga veses, como si el ta es confondeda. Alora el reti se e prende de sua caxa un de sua sigaretas negra; la fuma agu e insensin flota supra a la narinas de Rainsford.
The hunter shook his head several times, as if he were puzzled. Then he straightened up and took from his case one of his black cigarettes; its pungent incenselike smoke floated up to Rainsford’s nostrils.
Rainsford teni sua respira. Le oios de la jeneral ia lasa la tera e move par cada sentimetre a alta de la arbor. Rainsford jela ala, con cada musculo tensada per un salta. Ma la oios agu de la xasor para ante cuando el ateni la ramo do Rainsford reclina; un surie estende sur se fas brun. Multe intendente el sofla un anelo de fuma en la aira; alora el turna sua dorso contra la arbor e pasea noncurante a via, reveninte longo la curso par cual el ia veni. La xuxa de la subosce contra sua botas de xasa deveni sempre plu cuieta.
Rainsford held his breath. The general’s eyes had left the ground and were traveling inch by inch up the tree. Rainsford froze there, every muscle tensed for a spring. But the sharp eyes of the hunter stopped before they reached the limb where Rainsford lay; a smile spread over his brown face. Very deliberately he blew a smoke ring into the air; then he turned his back on the tree and walked carelessly away, back along the trail he had come. The swish of the underbrush against his hunting boots grew fainter and fainter.
La aira restrinjeda esplode calda de la pulmones de Rainsford. Sua prima pensa fa ce el senti malada e nonsensosa. La jeneral pote segue un curso tra la jungla a note; el pote segue un curso estrema difisil; el ave serta potias turbante grande; sola par la acaso la plu pico la cosac ia fali vide sua xasada.
The pent-up air burst hotly from Rainsford’s lungs. His first thought made him feel sick and numb. The general could follow a trail through the woods at night; he could follow an extremely difficult trail; he must have uncanny powers; only by the merest chance had the Cossack failed to see his quarry.
La pensa du de Rainsford es an plu asustante. Lo fa un trema de teror fria vade tra sua esente intera. Perce la jeneral ia surie? Perce el ia reversa?
Rainsford’s second thought was even more terrible. It sent a shudder of cold horror through his whole being. Why had the general smiled? Why had he turned back?
Rainsford no vole crede lo cual sua razona dise a el, ma la vera es tan evidente como la sol cual ia presa ja tra la nebletas matinal. La jeneral jua con el! La jeneral reserva el per un otra dia de sporte! La cosac es la gato; el es la mus. Alora es cuando Rainsford sabe la sinifia plen de teror.
Rainsford did not want to believe what his reason told him was true, but the truth was as evident as the sun that had by now pushed through the morning mists. The general was playing with him! The general was saving him for another day’s sport! The Cossack was the cat; he was the mouse. Then it was that Rainsford knew the full meaning of terror.
“Me no va perde mea coraje. Me no va fa.”
“I will not lose my nerve. I will not.”
El desende liscante la arbor, e vade denova a en la foresta. Sua fas es fisada e el forsa la macinas de sua mente a opera. A tresento metres de sua loca de asconde, el para do un grande arbor mor apoia nonstable sur un otra vivente e plu pico. Desaponente sua sacon de comeda, Rainsford prende sua cotel de la gaina e comensa labora con tota de sua enerjia.
He slid down from the tree, and struck off again into the woods. His face was set and he forced the machinery of his mind to function. Three hundred yards from his hiding place he stopped where a huge dead tree leaned precariously on a smaller, living one. Throwing off his sack of food, Rainsford took his knife from its sheath and began to work with all his energy.
La taxe es finida pos alga tempo, e el lansa se a retro de un tronco cadeda a distantia de tredes metres. El no debe espeta longa. La gato reveni per jua con la mus.
The job was finished at last, and he threw himself down behind a fallen log a hundred feet away. He did not have to wait long. The cat was coming again to play with the mouse.
Seguente la curso con la serta de un sanumberto, jeneral Zarof veni. No cosa evita acel oios xercante, no folia craseda de erba, no basteta pliada, no marca, an tan cuieta, en la mos. La cosac es tan consentrada sur sua xasa ce el es a la cosa cual Rainsford ia fa ante cuando el vide lo. Sua pede toca la ramo protendente cual es la gatilio. An cuando el toca lo, la jeneral sensa sua peril e salta a retro con la ajilia de un primate. Ma el no es sufisinte rapida; la arbor mor, delicata ajustada per resta sur la vivente cotelida, cade xocante e colpa tanjente la jeneral sur la spala; sin sua vijila, el ta es craseda su lo. El bambola, ma el no cade; e el no cade sua revolver. El sta ala, frotante sua spala ferida, e Rainsford, denova con la teme saisinte sua cor, oia la rie burlante de la jeneral sona tra la jungla.
Following the trail with the sureness of a bloodhound came General Zaroff. Nothing escaped those searching black eyes, no crushed blade of grass, no bent twig, no mark, no matter how faint, in the moss. So intent was the Cossack on his stalking that he was upon the thing Rainsford had made before he saw it. His foot touched the protruding bough that was the trigger. Even as he touched it, the general sensed his danger and leaped back with the agility of an ape. But he was not quite quick enough; the dead tree, delicately adjusted to rest on the cut living one, crashed down and struck the general a glancing blow on the shoulder as it fell; but for his alertness, he must have been smashed beneath it. He staggered, but he did not fall; nor did he drop his revolver. He stood there, rubbing his injured shoulder, and Rainsford, with fear again gripping his heart, heard the general’s mocking laugh ring through the jungle.
“Rainsford,” — la jeneral esclama — “si tu es en la estende de mea vose, como me suposa tu es, permete ce me loda tu. No multe omes sabe lo como fa un caturaom malaisian. Fortunosa per me, me ance ia xasa en Melaca. Tu evidenti interesante, sr Rainsford. Me vade aora per fa ce on vesti mea feri; lo es mera minor. Ma me va reveni. Me va reveni.”
“Rainsford,” called the general, “if you are within sound of my voice, as I suppose you are, let me congratulate you. Not many men know how to make a Malay mancatcher. Luckily for me I, too, have hunted in Malacca. You are proving interesting, Mr. Rainsford. I am going now to have my wound dressed; it’s only a slight one. But I shall be back. I shall be back.”
Cuando la jeneral, curante sua spala contusada, ia vade, Rainsford continua sua fuji. Lo es fuji aora, un fuji desperante, cual porta el per alga oras. Lus final veni, alora la oscuria, e ancora el continua. La tera deveni plu mol su sua mocasines; la plantas deveni plu densa; insetos morde el savaje.
When the general, nursing his bruised shoulder, had gone, Rainsford took up his flight again. It was flight now, a desperate, hopeless flight, that carried him on for some hours. Dusk came, then darkness, and still he pressed on. The ground grew softer under his moccasins; the vegetation grew ranker, denser; insects bit him savagely.
Alora, cuando el fa un paso, sua pede fonda en la suda. El atenta tira lo a retro, ma la mugre suca cruel a sua pede como si lo ta es un sucasangue jigante. Con un labora violente, e retira sua pede. El sabe do el es aora. La Pantan de Moria e sua arena movente.
Then, as he stepped forward, his foot sank into the ooze. He tried to wrench it back, but the muck sucked viciously at his foot as if it were a giant leech. With a violent effort, he tore his feet loose. He knew where he was now. Death Swamp and its quicksand.
Sua manos es streta cluida como si sua coraje es un cosa concreta cual algun en la oscuria atenta aranca de sua teni. La molia de la tera ia dona a el un idea. El vade a tre o cuatro metres a retro de la arena movente, e como alga castor preistorial e jigante, el comensa escava.
His hands were tight closed as if his nerve were something tangible that someone in the darkness was trying to tear from his grip. The softness of the earth had given him an idea. He stepped back from the quicksand a dozen feet or so and, like some huge prehistoric beaver, he began to dig.
Rainsford ia fa escavas per se mesma en Frans cuando un retarda de un secondo sinifia la mor. Acel ia un pasatempo pasosa comparada con sua escava aora. La buco deveni plu profonda; cuando lo es supra sua spalas, el asende e de alga arbores joven e dur el coteli palos e agi los a puntos pico. El planta esta palos en la fondo de la buco con la puntos a alta. Con ditos volante el texe un tapeta bruta de erbas e ramos e con lo el covre la boca de la buco. Alora, moiada con suo e dolente de fatiga, el acrupi se a retro de la tronco de un arbor carbonida par lampo.
Rainsford had dug himself in in France when a second’s delay meant death. That had been a placid pastime compared to his digging now. The pit grew deeper; when it was above his shoulders, he climbed out and from some hard saplings cut stakes and sharpened them to a fine point. These stakes he planted in the bottom of the pit with the points sticking up. With flying fingers he wove a rough carpet of weeds and branches and with it he covered the mouth of the pit. Then, wet with sweat and aching with tiredness, he crouched behind the stump of a lightning-charred tree.
El sabe sua xasor prosimi; el oia la sona de pasos sur la tera mol, e la venteta notal trae a el la parfum de la sigareta de la jeneral. Lo pare a Rainsford ce la jeneral veni con rapidia nonusual; el no palpa sua via par paso pos paso. Rainsford, en acrupi, no pote vide la jeneral, e no pote vide la buco. El vive tra un anio en un minuto. Alora el senti un impulsa per cria a vose con felisia, car el oia la crepita agu de ramos rompente cuando la covre de la buco separa; el oia la xilia agu de dole cuando la palos puntida trova sua ojeto. El salta de sua loca de asconde. Alora el retira temosa. A un metre de la buco un om sta, con un torxa eletrical en sua mano.
He knew his pursuer was coming; he heard the padding sound of feet on the soft earth, and the night breeze brought him the perfume of the general’s cigarette. It seemed to Rainsford that the general was coming with unusual swiftness; he was not feeling his way along, foot by foot. Rainsford, crouching there, could not see the general, nor could he see the pit. He lived a year in a minute. Then he felt an impulse to cry aloud with joy, for he heard the sharp crackle of the breaking branches as the cover of the pit gave way; he heard the sharp scream of pain as the pointed stakes found their mark. He leaped up from his place of concealment. Then he cowered back. Three feet from the pit a man was standing, with an electric torch in his hand.
“Tu fa ja bon, Rainsford.” — la vose de la jeneral clama. “Tua buco de tigre de Burma ia reclama un de mea canes la plu bon. Denova tu fa un gol. Me pensa, sr Rainsford, ce me va vide lo cual tu va pote fa contra mea manada intera. Me reveni a casa per un reposa aora. Grasias per un note la plu divertinte.”
“You’ve done well, Rainsford,” the voice of the general called. “Your Burmese tiger pit has claimed one of my best dogs. Again you score. I think, Mr. Rainsford, Ill see what you can do against my whole pack. I’m going home for a rest now. Thank you for a most amusing evening.”
A leva de sol Rainsford, reclinante a prosima de la pantan, es veliada par un sona cual fa ce el sabe ce el ave cosas nova per aprende sur teme. Lo es un sona distante, cuieta e ondante, ma el sabe lo. Lo es la abaia de un manada de canes-xasores.
At daybreak Rainsford, lying near the swamp, was awakened by a sound that made him know that he had new things to learn about fear. It was a distant sound, faint and wavering, but he knew it. It was the baying of a pack of hounds.
Rainsford sabe ce el pote fa un de du cosas. El pote resta do el es e espeta. Acel es suiside. El pote fuji. Acel es pospone la nonevitable. Per un momento el sta ala, pensante. Un idea cual teni un posiblia pico veni a el, e, stretinte sua sintur, el vade a via de la pantan.
Rainsford knew he could do one of two things. He could stay where he was and wait. That was suicide. He could flee. That was postponing the inevitable. For a moment he stood there, thinking. An idea that held a wild chance came to him, and, tightening his belt, he headed away from the swamp.
La abaia de la xasores deveni plu prosima, alora an plu prosima, plu prosima, sempre plu prosima. Sur un cresta Rainsford asende un arbor. A basa de un curso de acua, a min ca cuatrosento metres distante, el pote vide la subosce move. Tensante sua oios, el vide la figur magra de jeneral Zarof; direta ante el Rainsford persepi un otra figur, de ci sua spalas larga aradi tra la plantas alta de la jungla; lo es la jigante Ivan, e el pare tirada a ante par alga forsa nonvideda; Rainsford sabe ce lo debe es ce Ivan teni la manada a corea.
The baying of the hounds drew nearer, then still nearer, nearer, ever nearer. On a ridge Rainsford climbed a tree. Down a watercourse, not a quarter of a mile away, he could see the bush moving. Straining his eyes, he saw the lean figure of General Zaroff; just ahead of him Rainsford made out another figure whose wide shoulders surged through the tall jungle weeds; it was the giant Ivan, and he seemed pulled forward by some unseen force; Rainsford knew that Ivan must be holding the pack in leash.
Los va es a el pronto. Sua mente opera ajitada. El recorda un truco nativa cual el ia aprende en Uganda. El desende liscante la arbor. El teni un arbor joven e flexable e a lo el fisa sua cotel de xasa, con la lama puntante a retro longo la curso; con un pico de uvo savaje el lia curvida la arbor. Alora el core per sua vive. La canes alti sua voses en cuando los deteta la odor fresca. Rainsford sabe aora lo como un animal ultra fuji senti.
They would be on him any minute now. His mind worked frantically. He thought of a native trick he had learned in Uganda. He slid down the tree. He caught hold of a springy young sapling and to it he fastened his hunting knife, with the blade pointing down the trail; with a bit of wild grapevine he tied back the sapling. Then he ran for his life. The hounds raised their voices as they hit the fresh scent. Rainsford knew now how an animal at bay feels.
El debe para per recovre sua respira. La abaia de la canes para subita, e sua cor para ance. Lo debe es ce los ateni ja la cotel.
He had to stop to get his breath. The baying of the hounds stopped abruptly, and Rainsford’s heart stopped too. They must have reached the knife.
El asende stimulada un arbor e regarda a retro. Sua xasores ia para. Ma la espera en sua serebro cuando el ia asende mori, car el vide en la vale basa ce jeneral Zarof es ancora sur sua pedes. Ma Ivan no es. La cotel, forsada par la retira de la arbor curvida, no falta intera.
He shinned excitedly up a tree and looked back. His pursuers had stopped. But the hope that was in Rainsford’s brain when he climbed died, for he saw in the shallow valley that General Zaroff was still on his feet. But Ivan was not. The knife, driven by the recoil of the springing tree, had not wholly failed.
Rainsford ia cade apena a tera cuando la manada comensa la cria denova.
Rainsford had hardly tumbled to the ground when the pack took up the cry again.
“Coraje, coraje, coraje!” — el dise con respiras rapida, en cuando el freta a longo. Un fesur blu mostra se entre la arbores direta a ante. Sempre plu prosima la canes veni. Rainsford forsa se a dirije de acel fesur. El ateni lo. Lo es la costa de la mar. Ultra un baieta el pote vide la petra gris e sombre de la cason. Ses metres a basa de el la mar ronca e sisa. Rainsford esita. El oia la canes. Alora el salta a distante en la mar. …
“Nerve, nerve, nerve!” he panted, as he dashed along. A blue gap showed between the trees dead ahead. Ever nearer drew the hounds. Rainsford forced himself on toward that gap. He reached it. It was the shore of the sea. Across a cove he could see the gloomy gray stone of the chateau. Twenty feet below him the sea rumbled and hissed. Rainsford hesitated. He heard the hounds. Then he leaped far out into the sea. …
Cuando la jeneral e sua manada ateni la loca a lado de la mar, la cosac para. A alga minutos el sta en regarda la estende blu-verde de acua. El leva sua spalas. Alora el senta, bevi coniac de un botela de arjento, ensende un sigareta, e zumbi un pico de Madama Butterfly.
When the general and his pack reached the place by the sea, the Cossack stopped. For some minutes he stood regarding the blue-green expanse of water. He shrugged his shoulders. Then be sat down, took a drink of brandy from a silver flask, lit a cigarette, and hummed a bit from Madame Butterfly.
Jeneral Zarof ave un come esedente bon en sua salon de come grande e panelida a acel sera. Con lo el ave un botela de Pol Roger e un dui de un botela de Chambertin. Du iritas minor preveni el de la plaser perfeta. La un es la pensa ce lo va es difisil per recambia Ivan; la otra es ce sua xasada ia evade el; natural, la american no ia fa la jua — tal la jeneral pensa en cuando el saborea sua distilada pos come. En sua biblioteca el leje, per consola se, la operas de Marco Aurelio. A la ora des el asende a sua sala de dormi. El es deletosa fatigada, el dise a se mesma, en cuando el clavi la porte pos el. On ave un poca de lus de luna, donce, ante abri sua lampa, el vade a la fenetra e basi sua regarda a la patio. El pote vide la canes grande, e el dise — “Fortuna plu bon a otra ves” — a los. Alora el ensende la lampa.
General Zaroff had an exceedingly good dinner in his great paneled dining hall that evening. With it he had a bottle of Pol Roger and half a bottle of Chambertin. Two slight annoyances kept him from perfect enjoyment. One was the thought that it would be difficult to replace Ivan; the other was that his quarry had escaped him; of course, the American hadn’t played the game — so thought the general as he tasted his after-dinner liqueur. In his library he read, to soothe himself, from the works of Marcus Aurelius. At ten he went up to his bedroom. He was deliciously tired, he said to himself, as he locked himself in. There was a little moonlight, so, before turning on his light, he went to the window and looked down at the courtyard. He could see the great hounds, and he called, “Better luck another time,” to them. Then he switched on the light.
Un om, ci ia asconde se en la cortinas de la leto, sta ala.
A man, who had been hiding in the curtains of the bed, was standing there.
“Rainsford!” — la jeneral cria. “Como de nom de Dio tu ia ariva asi?”
“Rainsford!” screamed the general. “How in God’s name did you get here?”
“Par nada.” — Rainsford dise. “Me ia trova ce lo es plu rapida ca pasea tra la jungla.”
“Swam,” said Rainsford. “I found it quicker than walking through the jungle.”
La jeneral enspira e surie. “Me loda tu.” — el dise. “Tu ia gania la jua.”
The general sucked in his breath and smiled. “I congratulate you,” he said. “You have won the game.”
Rainsford no surie. “Me es ancora un bestia trapida.” — el dise con un vose basa e roncin. “Prepara, jeneral Zarof.”
Rainsford did not smile. “I am still a beast at bay,” he said, in a low, hoarse voice. “Get ready, General Zaroff.”
La jeneral fa un de sua inclinas la plu profonda. “Me vide.” — el dise. “Eselente! Un de nos es per furni un come a la canes. La otra va dormi en esta leto multe eselente. A garda, Rainsford.” …
The general made one of his deepest bows. “I see,” he said. “Splendid! One of us is to furnish a repast for the hounds. The other will sleep in this very excellent bed. On guard, Rainsford.” …
El ia dormi nunca en un leto plu bon, Rainsford deside.
He had never slept in a better bed, Rainsford decided.