Stage 2 (Apprentice): Anna Karenina, chapter 5


Vronsky soon resigned(2) his military post. Never had he thought that he would do this so quickly, without having even a second thought.  Then, Vronsky,along with his small and cozy family,left St.Petersburg and went to Italy. Without doubt(3), Anna and Vronsky had the best time together during the journey through Europe. Finally,they bought a house in an Italian town and started their new life. At first, both of them were extremely contented(4)with it but Vronsky soon grew bored as he didn’t have any proper employment(5). Hence, their intended to move to Vronsky’s large family estate in the vicinity of St.Petersburg(6) and to stop at St.Petersburg first so Anna could visit her son, Seriozha.

It was only when Anna had left that Karenin realized that he couldn’t move on with his life. He was unhappy most of the time and had to deal with humiliation(7) when people gossiped(8) about him. He just wanted to shut himself out from society. But one single lady did care for him. Her name was Countess Lydia Ivanova, a religious woman who married at a very young age. After 2 months, her husband left her and as soon as she heard people talking about Karenin, she pitied him deeply. She thought that he would sympathise with her as well and that they would be good friends.

One day, she made up her mind(9) : she would visit Karenin.

Upon meeting Karenin, she told him in a sympathetic voice:

“ My dear, I know that you are in hard time but listen to me, you must be strong!”

To her suprise as well as his, Karenin looked up at Lydia and cried dreadfully(10):

“It is not only Anna’s leaving but also the gossips of my neighbors which make me feel so embarrassed and humiliated. To add up to this, I have to deal with tons of things now, from household matters to paying the bills.”

Countess Lydia replied sympathetically:

“ I understand that. The thing here is that you should have a woman to help you manage those affairs and no one is more trustworthy than me, your dear friend. Will you allow me to do that for you?”

Karenin pressed Countess Lydia’s hand to express his gratitude to her.

When Lydia heard of Anna’s upcoming arrival, she felt horrified and tried to come up with as many ways to prevent this meeting as possible since she didn’t want Karenin to meet Anna at all.

The very next day, Lydia got a note written by Anna. It seemed that Anna’s only purpose of going back to St.Petersburg was to see Seriozha and she wrote the letter to inform Lydia about that. Still, Lydia didn’t want this to happen and she showed it to Karenin. She tried to talk him into denying(11) Anna’s request, saying that the boy thought that his mother was dead anyway.

Reluctantly(12), Karenin allowed Lydia to write a response turning down Anna’s request. On seeing the letter, Anna hit the roof(12) and despite Lydia’s disapproval, decided to meet her son the next morning.

And so she went, creeping noiselessly into the house that was once hers, the corridors that she had just recently left, and the room where her dear little boy was lying, peacefully asleep.

As soon as her footsteps were heard, however, the tiny eyes opened, and little Seriozha jumped out of bed wide awake

After rubbing his eyes quite a few times, Seriozha realized that he was not dreaming and that the woman sitting on his bed was actually his mom. He ran to his her promptly and kissed her on the cheeks.

Needless to say, Anna also missed her son a lot. She asked the boy:

“ Did you think that I was dead?”

He replied:

“ Never have I believed that, mama. I love you so much!.”

Suddenly, the door opened and standing next to it was Karenin. Seriozha cried as he was scared that a quarrel would begino. But he was wrong. After kissing him, Anna quickly went to the door and the two didn’t even talk to each other.

When Anna came back to her hotel room, she started crying uncontrollably. She thought that she was all alone in this big world. Even Vronsky wasn’t there with her. She sent a note to him, asking where he had been. A moment later, a servant brought her a reply note from him. It said that he would go home soon with his friend.

A crazy thought crossed Anna’s mind:

“Does he still love me? Why won’t he come home alone? Is he trying to not be alone with me? Then he should tell me!”.

Finally, Vronsky and his friend got home. During dinner, they talked a lot about politics. Anna soon realized that Vronsky wanted to move to Moscow to run for an office in the government.

In the next few days, Vronsky went to a lot of parties without Anna. This was partly because, if she had gone, she would have been the topic of others’ gossip. And on the other hand, Vronsky needed to make new aquaintances to attain his objective(13) of becoming a politician. Anna soon grew jealous. She was afraid that in those luxurious parties, Vronsky would fall in love with another beautiful and young woman. This was her worst fear because Vronsky had once told her that his mother would like him to marry a young, rich and noble woman, the Princess Sorokina.

One evening, as Anna could not contain her jealousy any longer, Anna and Vronsky argued violently. It began becasue Stiva sent her a telegram which that there was no hope for the divorce. Anna was so upset, she started blaming everyone else, including Vronsky, for not loving her enough. She also insulted Vronsky’s mother, mocking him and her about the intended match with Princess Sorokina.

Because he loved both Anna and his mother, Vronsky became very angry. He left Anna alone and went out, not bothering to tell her his destination. Anna then spent the whole day in her room crying and thinking that her death would be the best measure to address this miserable situation.

She laid down for a nap and an old peasant bending down and muttering in French appeared in her dream. When she woke up, she heard a carriage outside. Sitting in it was a young and pretty lady.

To her surprise, Vronsky ran out, helped the girl out of her carriage and offered to carry her bag. They chatted a bit and she could saw that Vronsky smiled at the girl. Anna went straight to Vronsky’s study to ask who that was. He explained:

“That’s Soronkina. She brought me some documents which I will give to my mother tomorrow. We’ll visit her,won’t we?”.

Anna said she would not go and went to her room. A few minutes later, another carriage came and Vronsky went to see his moher alone. Fearfully, Anna ran upstairs and wrote Vronsky a notes saying that she had been acting wrongly and that he must come back.

But it was too late, and the servants couldn’t send the note to him. So Anna decided to get there herself to talk to Vronsky.

She prepared to get in a train to follow him. Through the window, she saw a filthy man bending over and muttering something. She remembered her dream and became really afraid.

Suddenly, Anna received Vronsky’s reply to her telegram, saying:

“Just received your telegram. I cannot return by ten.”.

“It’s all over!” Anna thought. “He doesn’t love me any more.”

Just as she was wondering where to go then, another train came. Anna knew exactly what to do. As it approached her, she went straight to the rails and knelt down. For a moment, she could escape from everything, from the world, from her sins, from the hatred of others. But just as quickly, the light died out in her, and was lost forever.



-resigned from(p.v): to stop working inyour comapany,corporation etc

-without doubt(exp): doubtless

-contented(adj): happy

-employment(n): job

-in the vicinity of [a place]: around that place


-gossiped(v)(v bare:gossip): to talk informally about other people

-make up one’s mind: decide

-dreadfully(adv): a lot

-talk sb into doing sth(p.v): persuade sb to do sth\

-reluctantly (adv) in a reluctant way

-hit the roof(idm): suddently become angry





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