Pyotr Alekseevich Marakulin colleagues of his fun and carelessness infected. Sam – a narrow-chested, mustache with a thread, about thirty years old, but he felt almost twelve years old. Marakulin was famous for his handwriting, the reports showed the letter after the letter: he scribbled exactly as if he were beading down, and more than once he would rewrite it, but afterwards – at least carry it to the exhibition. And Marakulin knew joy: he flees to work once more in the morning, and suddenly he will fill his chest and become unusually.
At the time everything changed. Waited for Easter Marakulin enhancement and reward – and instead he was expelled from the service. For five years, Pyotr Alexeyevich was in charge of coupons, and everything was in good order, and the directors started to check before the holiday – something does not fit. They said later – the cashier, a friend of Marakulin, “enumerated.” Pyotr Alekseevich tried to prove
that there was some mistake – they did not listen. And then Marakulin understood: “A man is a log to man.”
I walked through the summer without work, I put things back, sold them, and made fun of myself. And the apartment had to move out. Peter Alexeyevich settled in Burkovsky house, opposite the Obukhov hospital, where people wander in hospital gowns and the red cross of white sisters flashed. From the front end of the house there live the rich: Burkov, the former governor, and the attorney, and the doctor of medicine, and the general’s wife Kholmogorova – “a louse,” the percentage of some of her enough to death. From black – the apartment is small. There are shoemakers, tailors, bakers, bath attendants, hairdressers and others. Here is the apartment of mistress Marakulina, Adonia Ivoylovny. She is a widow, rich, loves blissful and holy fools. In summer she leaves on a pilgrimage, leaving the apartment for Akumovna, the cook. In the yard they love Akumovna: Akumovna was in the next world, she was walking in torments-divine! From home she is almost nowhere,
neighbors of Marakulina are the brothers Damaskin: Vasily Alexandrovich, the clown, and Sergey Alexandrovich, who dances in the theater, walks – the land does not concern. And even closer – two Faiths. Vera Nikolaevna Klikacheva, from the Nadezhdinsky courses, pale, thin, earns a massage, wants to prepare for a matriculation certificate to enter a medical institute, and it’s hard to learn to tears, and Vera howls like a loop in the night. Vera, Vera Ivanovna Vekhoreva, is a student at the Theater School. Verochka liked Marakulina. She danced well, read with a voice. But she was amazed by her arrogance, said that she was a great actress, she shouted: “I will show who I am to the whole world.” And Marakulin felt that she wanted to show Vakuyeva to the breeder: she kept the year, but was tired – sent to Petersburg, to study for thirty rubles a month. At night Vera’s head was beating against the wall.
For the summer everyone left, and in the autumn Verochka did not return. After seeing her on the boulevard, with different men. In her place, Anna Stepanovna, a gymnasium teacher, settled down-her husband was generalized, offended, abandoned. In the autumn everyone had a hard time. Clown Vasiliy Alexandrovich fell from the trapezium, his legs hurt, Anna Stepanovna paid a salary, Marakulina – the work was over. And suddenly – a call to him from Moscow, from Pavel Plotnikov. Itself Marakulin Moscow. Went – remembered.
In those early years, Peter was busy with Pasha, and Plotnikov listened to him as an elder. And later, when the adult Plotnikov drank and was ready to throw out anything, only Peter Alekseevich could stop the unrestrained friend. Marakulin also thought about his mother, Eugenia Aleksandrovna: we must go to the grave. He remembered her in a coffin, – he was then ten years old, could see her cross on the waxen forehead from under the white corolla.
Zhenya’s father served as a factory doctor at Plotnikov’s father, often took her with him. Zhenya had seen enough of the factory life, the soul had recovered. She helped me to help the young technician Tsyganov, who arranged for factory readings, picked up books. Once, when everything was done, she hurried home. Yes, suddenly Tsyganov rushed at her and threw him to the floor. I did not say anything at home, I was tormented by horror and shame. Itself in all blamed: Tsyganov “just blind”. And every time she came to help him, it was that same evening. And begged him to spare, not to touch, but he did not want to hear. A year later, Tsyganov disappeared from the factory, Zhenya sighed, but the same happened the same thing the other time, only with her brother, the cadet. And he begged him, but he did not want to hear either. And when a year later my brother left Moscow – a young doctor, an assistant to his father, replaced his brother. And for three years she was silent. And I blamed myself. The father, looking at her, was worried: was not she overtired? Persuaded to go to the village. And there in the Great Post on Holy Week on Tuesday she went to the forest and prayed for three days and three nights with all the burning of horror, shame and torment. And on Good Friday appeared in the church, completely naked, with a razor in his hand. And when they carried the shroud, she began to cut herself, placing crosses on her forehead, on her shoulders, on her hands, on her chest. And her blood was pouring on the shroud.
For a year I lay in the hospital, hardly noticeable scar remained on my forehead, and even then under the hair is not visible. And when my father’s acquaintance, the accountant Aleksei Ivanovich Marakulin, explained to her-decided, told everything without concealment. He listened humbly and cried – he loved her. And the son remembered only: his mother was strange.
All night, Marakulin did not fall asleep, just forgot for a minute, and a dream occurred to him, as if Plotnikov persuaded: it is better to live without a head, and cut his neck with a razor. And there came a fever at Plotnikov: “There is no head, no mouth on his back, and eyes are on his shoulders.” He is a beehive. ” And not that – the king of the polar state, he controls the whole world, he wants – he rotates to the left, he wants – to the right, he will stop, then he will start. Suddenly, after a month’s drinking-bout, Plotnikov recognized Marakulina: “Petrusha, the tail-scoundrel…” – and, staggering to the sofa, fell asleep for two days. A mother – crying and thanking: “Healed him, my father!”
When Pavel woke up, he dragged Marakulin to a tavern, and at the table confessed: “I believe in you, Petrusha, as I believe in God, I will not get by in business – I’ll name your name,” you look, everything is the same as before. ” And he dragged him along, then he went to the station. Already in the car, Marakulin recalled: he had not been in time to visit his mother’s grave. And a kind of anguish poured into him…
Unhappily, the lodgers met Easter. Vasily Alexandrovich discharged from the hospital, walked with difficulty, as if without a heel. Vera Nikolaevna is not up to the certificate – the doctor advised somewhere in Abastuman to go: with the lungs wrong. Anna Stepanovna fell from her feet, waited for her dismissal, and all smiled with her sick, terrible smile. And when Sergei Aleksandrovich made a condition with the theater about a trip abroad, other herds call: “Russia suffocates among all the Bourkovs.” Everyone should go abroad, at least for a week. ” – “What kind of money will we go to?” Anna Stepanovna smiled. “I’ll get money,” Marakulin said, remembering Plotnikov, “I’ll get a thousand rubles!” And everyone believed it. And the heads began to spin. There, in Paris, they will find themselves all a place on the earth, a job, a certificate of maturity, a lost joy. “I’d like to find Verochka,”
In the evenings Akumovna wondered, and a big change came to everyone. “And will not we take Akumovna?” – Sergey Alexandrovich winked. “Well, I’ll go and get some air!”
And finally the answer came from Plotnikov: through the bank he transferred Marakulin twenty-five rubles. And Sergei Alexandrovich left with the theater abroad, and Vera Nikolaevna and Anna Stepanovna persuaded to settle with Vasily Alexandrovich in Finland, in Tour-Kiel, – he needs care. From morning till night Marakulin walked around Petersburg from end to end, like a mouse in a mousetrap. And at night, he was snub-nosed, toothed, naked: “On Saturday,” she chattered, laughing, “my mother will be in white!” Marakulin woke with a deadly longing. It was Friday. And he froze completely from the thought: the term to him is the Sabbath. And he did not want to believe in sleep, and he believed, and, believing himself, he sentenced himself to death. And Marakulin felt that he could not stand it, the Sabbath would not wait, and in the anguish of death from the morning, wandering the streets, he only waited for the night: to see Vera, tell her everything and say goodbye. The trouble led him, metal from the street to the street, confused – it’s fate, from which not to leave. And the night was winding – I tried to find Verochka. And Saturday came and was already coming to an end, the hour was drawing near. And Marakulin went to himself: maybe a dream of another means that Akumovny did not ask him?
For a long time he called and came in from the back door. The door to the kitchen was unlocked. Akumovna was sitting in a white kerchief. “Mother will be in white!” Marakulin recalled and groaned.
Akumovna jumped up and told me how she climbed into the attic in the morning, the clothes were hanging there, but someone locked it. I climbed out onto the roof, almost slipped off, I tried to scream, there was no voice. I wanted to go down the chute, but the janitor saw: “Do not climb,” he cries, “otpru!”
Marakulin told his own story. “What does this dream mean, Akumovna?” The old woman is silent. The clock in the kitchen rattled, twisted for twelve hours. “Akumovna?” Marakulin asked, “is it Sunday?” – “Sunday, sleep peacefully.” And, waiting for Akumovna to calm down, took Marakulin’s pillow and, like summer Burkovo residents, putting it on the windowsill, was moved to freedom. And suddenly I saw green birches on rubbish and bricks along the stall-boxes, I felt the former, his lost joy roll up slowly, roll over. And, unable to resist, with a pillow flew from the window sill down. “The times are ripe,” he heard from the bottom of the well, “the punishment is close.” Lie, marsh head. ” Marakulin was lying in the blood with a broken skull in the Burkovaya yard.