whispered: 'We must get
cowshed; we can
lead the calf out and lay him down on the bench, let him lie in state
if he likes...such a one as he has been!'
to get him out
fetch him out then.'
wait till it's day,
people will see you.'
'You go if
you are so keen.'
coming, you carrion,
or are you not?' he shouted at her; 'he's your father, not mine.' And
flung out of the room in a rage.
followed him without
entered the pigsty,
a breath of horror struck them, like the exhalation from a corpse. The
old man was lying there, cold as ice; one half of his body had frozen
to the floor; they had to tear him off forcibly before they could drag
him across the threshold and into the yard.
began to tremble
violently at the sight of him; he looked terrifying in the light of the
grey dawn, on the white coverlet of snow, with his anguished face,
eyes, and drooping tongue on which the teeth had closed firmly. There
blue patches on his skin, and he was covered with filth from head to
hold,' whispered the
man, bending over him. 'How horribly cold he is!'
wind which rises
just before the sun, blew into their faces, and shook the snow off the
swinging twigs with a dry crackle.
there a star was
still visible against the leaden background of the sky. From the
came the creaking noise of the hauling of water, and the cocks crew as
if the weather were going to change.
shut her eyes and
covered her hands with her apron, before she took hold of the old man's
feet; they could hardly lift him, he was so heavy. They had barely put
him down on a bench when she fled back into the house, throwing out a
to her husband to cover the corpse.
children were busy scraping
potatoes; she waited impatiently at the door.
Lord, how long you are!'
get some one to
come and wash him,' she said, laying the breakfast, when he had come in.
fetch the deaf-mute.'
to work to-day.'
not speak again,
and ate their breakfast without appetite, although as a rule they
their four quarts of soup between them.
went out into the
yard they walked quickly, and did not turn their heads towards the
side. They were worried, but did not know why; they felt no remorse; it
was perhaps more a vague fear of the corpse, or fear of death, that
them and made them silent.
When it was
broad day, Antek
fetched the village deaf-mute, who washed and dressed the old man, laid
him out, and put a consecrated candle at his head.
went to give notice
to the priest and to the Soltys of his father-in-law's death and his
inability to pay for the funeral.
bury him; he has
got all the money.'