Schavinsky, an employee of a large Petersburg newspaper, met Rybnikov in the company of well-known St. Petersburg reporters. The miserable and miserable staff captain spoke, thundering a mediocre command and extolling – with some affectation – a Russian soldier. After observing him, Schavinsky noticed some ambiguity in his appearance. At first glance, he had an ordinary face with a snub nose, in profile he looked mocking and clever, and in the face – even arrogant. At this time, the drunk poet Petrukhin woke up, stared at the officer with a dull look: “Ah, the Japanese muzzle, are you still here?”
“Japanese, that’s who he looks like,” Schavinsky thought. This idea was strengthened when Rybnikov tried to demonstrate his wounded leg: the underwear of an army infantry officer was made of fine silk.
Schavinsky bent over to the captain and said that he was not Rybnikov, but a Japanese military agent in Russia. But he did not react. The journalist even began to doubt: in fact, among the Ural and Orenburg Cossacks there are many such Mongolian, with yellow faces, people. But no, a slanting, cheeky face, constant obeisances and rubbing his hands – all this is not accidental. And aloud: “Nobody in the world will know about our conversation, but you are Japanese.” You are safe, I will not bring it, I admire your composure. ” And Schavinsky sang an enthusiastic praise to Japanese contempt for death. But the compliment was not accepted: the Russian soldier is no worse. The journalist then tried to touch his patriotic feelings: the...
In the morning they decided to continue the carousing of the “girls”. Klotilda led Rybnikov to the second floor. An hour later, she joined a company that invariably formed around her mysterious client, Lenka, who was apparently related to the police, and told about her strange guest, whom they called with him, then General Oyama, then Major Fukushima. They were drunk and joking, but Clotilde thought that the staff captain reminded her of a mikado. In addition, its ordinary customers are ugly rude. The caresses of this elderly officer were distinguished by insinuating caution and simultaneously surrounded by an atmosphere of tense, almost savage passion, although it was evident that he was madly tired. Resting, he plunged into a state similar to delirium, and strange words ran from his lips. Among them, she disassembled the one she knew: banzai!
A minute later, Lyonka was on the porch and called the policemen with alarming whistles.
When heavy footsteps of many feet were heard at the beginning of the corridor, Rybnikov woke up and ran to the door, turned the key, and then jumped to the sill with a gentle movement and opened the window. The woman grabbed his hand with a cry. He broke free and jumped uncomfortably. At the same instant, the door collapsed under the blows and Lyonka jumped with a run after him. Rybnikov lay motionless and did not resist when the pursuer leaned against him. He only whispered: “Do not press, I broke my leg.”